Dangerous Love on National Security Education Day



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April 15 was China's first annual National Security Education Day, observed with speeches and distribution of materials to raise awareness of security problems. The images below come from a two poster campaign called "Dangerous Love" (危险的爱情)that appeared in residential communities all over Xicheng in Beijing.  To join in the first National Security Education Day, we have translated it below.

Related Translations: China’s Counter-Espionage Law China’s National Security Law China’s Cybersecurity Law

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  1. Was this meant as an object of ridicule? Because the scenario depicted is a bog-standard espionage device, used by intelligence services around the world. Gain the subject’s trust and then ask for something of value.

    They left out the part where the foreign spy comes back with the evidence of wrongdoing and threatens the source with exposure if she doesn’t keep producing, or help to recruit others. This stuff really happens.

    • Not sure what you mean. I don’t think the National Security Agency that made the posters intended them as objects of ridicule at all, but was trying to educate the public on increasing vigilance. I can’t explain why they omitted any content.

      If you are suggesting that our faithfully reproducing it here with English translation is ridicule, I can’t really see how – It’s a glimpse of the actual publicity campaign for the first ever National Security Education Day in China, that those outside of China would otherwise miss.

      I think what people find amusing is the execution, not the credibility of the threat. Similarly, the FBI’s “Game of Pawns” video, was unquestionably based on an actual case and risk, but was mocked for its bad production values and acting. https://www.fbi.gov/news/videos/game-of-pawns

      Here the choice of a comic strip format and the choice of a white male academic seducing a young Chinese female are all intentional decisions, interesting and worthy of scrutiny. It puts me in mind of WWII era posters with similar themes, like the “Don’t even try, she might be a spy” posters, or the racist depictions of Japanese listening in to U.S. secrets http://cache4.asset-cache.net/gc/590677427-propaganda-poster-from-wwii-poster-warning-gettyimages.jpg?v=1&c=IWSAsset&k=2&d=9QMziWNtBI6whP66vhs4oZj1V2MOgZHWSNy8kri092eHec9sAB2M0JpFrbjWja3pArr77xdQXsJEK%2BQgHsTiMa%2FBeNVw3qegfDrc4DF94FM%3D

      • It certainly has been mocked all over the English speaking China web the past few days. “LOL foreigners are dangerous don’t date them they’ll steal your sekrets! How stupid!” has been the attitude.

      • Well, they had to make a decision, it would be object for scrutiny regardless of which one it turned out to be. The execution is rather low key anyway, nothing outrageous by any means. And no people are generally not aware that this is handbook espionage, go figure…

  2. Don’t agree with “foreign publicity department”. “Publicity” is China’s new preferred translation of xuanchuan, but there’s no reason we should conform to the Party’s preferences. A reader who doesn’t know Chinese is never going to understand why “foreign publicity” is sensitive, or even what it means. (They might think it means a foreign advertising agency, for example.) How about “foreign-related propaganda department”?

    • Lot’s of people saying they see them inside residential communities and hutongs. Just bike around inside the second ring.

  3. What is the context of this? Who is it being distributed to? If it’s internal use only then it’s hardly different that what other countries do.

    • As the intro says, it appeared in most residential communities in Xicheng district of Beijing and also other downtown areas. I don’t think it is all that different from what other places do– take a look at some of the comments above.

  4. What a load of horsecrap. Espionage was this way maybe 40 or 50 years ago or more but everything today is electronic media and usually by inside agents. This is nothing more than “We want to label foreigners as criminals”. The Chinese men are no better and in most ways worse to women there. Absolutely ludicrous. As if.

  5. no “Don’t even try, she might be a spy” posters on yahoo or bing
    by the way, chinalawtranslate thumbs up

14 Trackbacks / Pingbacks

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  9. Warning of "Sea Turtle" Spies and Dangerous Love - China Digital Times (CDT)
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