China's Trial of the Century

So it begins:

The long awaited trial of disgraced Chinese politician, Bo Xilai, began on Thursday at the courthouse in China’s Jinan City.

The man once tipped for the highest level of government is charged with bribery, corruption and abuse of power.

In court he said that he is “willing to bear the legal responsibilities”. Chinese state television reported that Bo did not contest the evidence shown in court.

Bo supporters have camped outside the courthouse. He was, and remains a popular politician, known for his crackdown on crime and a drive to promote China’s old communist values.

You can’t help but feel this is an internal Communist Party power struggle, being waged on TV via the courtroom. The outcome in these things is always predetermined, but I can’t help wondering what Bo had on Beijing and vice versa. I don’t suppose we’ll ever find out, not with China returning to some of its Bad Old Ways from the Mao era.