Japanese completed the purchase of Diaoyu Islands from a private owner a few hours earlier at 11:00am today despite China's huff, puff and bluff. If Chinese government's words were to be taken seriously, then today would be marked as the official date China lost the islands forever.
The writing had been on the wall in days. Xinhua News, the official national mouthpiece warned the Japanese government to 'rein its horse at the edge of cliff'. Premier Wen Jiabao vowed China would not back off from territorial dispute, whatsoever. President Hu Jintao met Japanese PM at the APEC to deliver China's determination. The People's Liberation Army made solemn declaration of its intention to fight. The current Crown Prince Dr. Xi Jinping aborted a prearranged meeting with visiting Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, alleged to show a gesture of anger over US's military support to Japan.
There was a famous joke which was often attributed to former Chinese premier Chou Enlai. At a recession of the NPCC, he told a joke to the representatives. 'Long long ago, there was a eunuch', where he made a suggestive long pause. 'Go down the story!' curious audience demanded loudly. 'There's nothing down there', replied Chou.
Common people would not want to be associated with an eunuch, but CCP was no common people. And this was not the first time it would act one.
After the Chinese Embassy in Yugoslavia was bombed by the US on May 7, 1999, Mr. Hu Jintao, as the official crown prince, read an announcement on the national TV to declare the bombing was a deliberate attack by the US government, rather a human mistake as US had explained. And that's pretty much it. The US never apologized as it insisted it was an error made by a few guys on the battlefield in a blink of eye. And that's pretty much it.
A another few years earlier, on the eve of Taiwan's first democratic presidential election, China threatened people on the island not to vote independent-leaning candidates with missile launches to areas east, west, north and south to it. Half million troops were mobilized, but no action took place when the result of the election came exactly as CCP had warned against.
Hours before the Japanese Government and the private owner of Diaoyu Islands sealed the deal, China announced two ocean surveillance ships had arrived the area as a display China's sovereignty. Several hours after the signing ceremony, Japanese government said it still had not found any Chinese ships in the disputed water, when asked by reporters.
Any small time crook on the street would tell you that one has to follow up his word, otherwise he's doomed. China's handling of international dispute always starts with big words, and that's all of it.
One would be naive to draw a conclusion that the CCP does not have street smart. They do. The truth is that they really could care less on pretty much anything, with the only exception to maintain their ruling inside China. The huff, puff and bluff are just enough to fuel its propaganda machine to keep the Chinese people in place, for now.