Press Conferences are easy in Communist Red China.
Don’t ask any difficult questions and it will be all good.
The air outside was a sickly shade of yellow. But there was not a single question about the environment at the Chinese premier's annual, televised news conference Wednesday.
In the two-hour news conference, Li Keqiang took pre-approved questions from foreign and domestic media. Some foreign journalists refused to take part, unwilling to submit questions for vetting, but many others did.
There was, of course, no mention of the detention of scores of lawyers, human rights and labor activists, and of Hong Kong booksellers;
no mention of the growing weight of censorship that has fallen on Chinese journalism and social media.
The Reuters news agency was granted the first question and chose to ask about financial reform and the economy -- but not why its own website remains blocked in China.
Li failed to mention several other touchy subjects, including North Korea's missile tests, soaring property prices in China’s main cities, last year’s stock market turbulence, reform of China’s mammoth state-owned enterprises, ethnic tensions or terrorism.