Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Capital Lockdown

Yesterday security was tense around the Olympic Green with the last dress rehearsal for the opening ceremonies on Friday.

Roads around that area were staffed with more security. It's so tight that traffic hardly moves.

Last night after work some friends and I tried to make our way southwards to Houhai for dinner.

But our taxis were inching down the road, having to pass numerous roadblocks police set up. I couldn't understand since we were trying to flee the area than approach it.

Many VIPs were expected to attend this dress rehearsal and hence the tight security. But imagine what it will be like on Friday?

My smart taxi driver took an opportunity to do a U-turn and go down a side street and we made substantial progress.

On one of those relatively empty streets, there was a long line of black Audis with police lights on them.

"This is too much," he said.

Traffic was fine until we were approaching Houhai which was again jammed. But then Houhai is always busy.

Even as we were at the entrance, there were more police cars there too.

On many street corners there are retired men and women in some kind of Olympic T-shirt, with red armbands. They're the friendly neighbourhood watch committee who sit out all day to see if there is any suspicious activity. It's eerily like the Cultural Revolution when people reported on their friends and neighbours if they weren't "red" enough.

Even in the shopping mall near where I live, at the food court, every stall has one staff member with the red armband that says something about security, as if they are the point person.

Do we really need to make sure the mall's food court will not be the site of a terrorist plotting?

But then again, you never know.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

yes we need to be vigilant. terrorists attack at places where it is least expected. just to make a scene to attract attention. the media will make a big deal of it. china is under the world's scrutiny. we have to be 110% safe.