Jiang in May 2008
|State Chairman of Xiaodong|
21st May 2006 – 19th November 2016
|Preceded by||Yang Zhengming|
|Succeeded by||Yuan Xiannian|
|Vice Premier of Xiaodong|
18nd May 2002 – 21st May 2006
|Preceded by||Qiao Jianxing|
|Succeeded by||Luo Wenjing|
|Member of the State Presidium|
18nd May 2002 – 19th November 2016
|Born||April 27, 1950|
Kuoqing, Luoyuan Province, Xiaodong
|Political party||Constitutional Protection Society|
Righteous Harmony Association
|Alma mater||Kuoqing Technical College|
Jiang Zhongyu (Xiaodongese: 江终于; fuhao: Jiāng Zhōngyǔ) is a former Xiaodongese politician. He previously served as State Chairman of Xiaodong from 2006 to his resignation in 2016, Vice Premier from 2002 to 2006, Governor of Luoyuan from 1997 to 2002 and Mayor of Kuoqing from 1990 to 1997.
Jiang was one of the young technocrats that came to prominence during economic and political reform in the 1980's as a member of conservative Constitutional Protection Society. He rose rapidly in politics when he was appointed as Mayor of Kuoqing, Xiaodong's third largest city, in 1990 a position he used to ascend to the position of Governor of Luoyuan in 1997 which remains Xiaodong's largest province. Becoming on the more prominent leaders on a provincial level in 2002 Premier Han Guanzheng appointed him as vice-premier due to his expertise in financial and management affairs.
In 2006 Jiang succeeded longtime State Chairman Yang Zhengming in the role, with his ascent being due to factional manoeuvrings by Yang and conservative forces that sought to prevent Han from ascending to the position. Jiang upon coming to power alongside Han and new vice-premier Luo Wenjing implemented the world's largest stimulus package in response to the 2005 financial crisis alongside a series of economically liberal practices that aimed to modernise the Xiaodongese economy. However as a response of these policies inequality and unemployment increased. Shortly after coming to power Jiang bolstered his influence by merging the ruling coalition government into a single party, the Righteous Harmony Association, in 2007. The same year Jiang removed Han from the position of Premier replacing him with Yuan Xiannian.
In domestic policy Jiang was seen as a "conservative reformist", supporting greater free-market reforms in the economy but being more conservative in regards to political reform. Under his tenure Jiang largely focused on the effects of the 2005 crisis pursuing demand-side economics to maintain growth whilst continuing the economic reform agenda of privatisation and deregulation. Under Jiang Xiaodong enjoyed record economic growth continuing the so-called "supply side miracle" during the entirety of the 2000's. Jiang also expanded the Shujichu and was seen to introduce stricter surveillance over civil society.
As State Chairman Jiang took a renewed interest in foreign policy, distancing Xiaodong from strategic arms negotiations with Senria and instead promoted much stronger ties between ROSPO nations. Jiang did however support a strong role for Xiaodong in multilateral institutions and maintained cordial relations with Gaullica and Narozalica in his term. Jiang supported a two pronged approach to increasing Xiaodong's presence in the global south whilst also expanding its relations with Euclean and Asterian nations. This latter policy was opposed by Yuan and some conservatives who called for more independence from Euclea.
Jiang was initially hesitant to approve Operation Eastern Protection which led to a decline in his popularity. He was seen to lose influence following the operation as Yuan, foreign minister Xi Yao-tong and general Ren Shaokun stacked the government with Yuan's allies in the Righteous Harmony Association over Jiang's faction. As a result Jiang was active in opposing the policies of the Yuan government leading to conflict between the Premier's Office and the State Chairman with Jiang vetoing more legislation than any prior State Chairman.
Jiang's response to the 2013 avian flu outbreak was considered largely to be a failure due to what was seen as misinformation at the start of the crisis and allowing the disease to move through to other countries in Coius. Although the government was able to deal with the crisis Jiang was seen as largely having done a poor job and to have communicated poorly, leading to his popularity to decline. As a result the ruling party lost its supermajority in the 2014 elections.
In October 2016 Jiang was implicated in the Dianfu Banking Scandal which triggered the 2016-17 Xiaodongese Protests. Initially sending police units to repress the protests Jiang's actions led to a backlash and a greater expansion of the protests undermining Jiang's public image. After his political support in the government and the military collapsed on the 19th November 2016 Jiang announced he would resign from all state positions, handing power over to premier Yuan Xiannian. He continued as Chairman of the Steering Committee of the Righteous Harmony Association but was forced to relinquish that post as well when the organisation was dissolved by the Judicial Council in December 2019.
In 2017, as part of Normalisation Jiang was implicated by some in the so-called Lotus Group Conspiracy, an alleged attempted coup d'état by members of the military and the Yundong religious sect. Jiang has denied knowledge of the conspiracy and has not been formally accused by legal authorities of any wrong doing, although has since 2018 retired entirely from politics.
Jiang's tenure is mainly remembered for large-scale economic reforms especially from 2005-2008 that continued the privatisation and liberalisation policies of the Economic Reorganising Programme. The high economic growth Jiang presided over has led to some to comment that under his stewardship Xiaodong significantly increased in wealth as well as seeing large-scale technological modernisation especially after the more national-security focused atmosphere of the 1990's. However he has been accused of overseeing massive corruption and after initial reforms largely maintained the same political structures of his predecessors. His response to the 2013 avian flu outbreak has also been widely criticised. Recent critics have also stated that Jiang's government saw an expansion of the deep state which helped lead to Normalisation.
Jiang was born in the city of Heping the first son of Jiang Xingjian and Ma Ling in 1949. Jiang Xingjin was a veteran of the Senrian-Xiaodongese War prominent politician serving variously as Mayor of Kuoqing from 1940-1946, Minister of Development and Energy 1947-1958 and as Minister of Defence and Military Planning from 1958-1966 in the governments of Chen Xuechang. His mother Ma Ling worked as the deputy editor for the East Sea Daily, one of the propaganda outlets for the regime.
Jiang is seen as a conservative politician in Xiaodong being supportive of economic liberalism, managed democracy and a foreign policy focused around the International Forum for Developing States. Political scientist Hu Guxiang identified him with the nationalist, anti-Senrian and pro-market wing of the Regeneration Society.
Jiang has supported the idea of a "Xiaodongese approach to democracy". According to Jiang, Xiaodongese democracy differs from liberal democracy in that citizens have "fundamental responsibilities to the state just as the state grants them fundamental rights." The concept of "Xiaodongese democracy" that Jiang promotes has also been promoted by former First Ministers Qian Xingwen, Han Guanzheng and Yuan Xiannian.
In a speech made upon becoming State Chairman in 2005, Jiang explicitly ruled out the emergence of a western style democracy in Xiaodong, rejecting constitutional republicanism, a presidential system and separation of powers. Instead, Jiang proposed an strong government that requires the approval of the people and approved the idea of a form of "democratic centralism" as an efficient way of conducting Xiaodongese politics.
Unlike other prominent Xiaodongese officials Jiang has not denied the deaths of many Senrians during the Senrian Genocide. Jiang stated in 2013 that the "actions of units in the Senrian territories could be seen to constitute a form of mass murder" and that Xiaodong "apologises profusely to the Senrian people" over the actions of the 1930's. However, Jiang said that there was "no policy of genocide" and that the massacres were the brainchild of occupation authorities rather than the central government at the time. Jiang later clarified this statement by saying accusations of ethnic cleansing were overexaggerated.