Cindy Yu

Cindy Yu

Cindy Yu is an assistant editor of The Spectator and presenter of our Chinese Whispers podcast. She was brought up in Nanjing. She tweets at @CindyXiaodanYu

What happened in the Commons chaos last night?

16 min listen

The Commons descended into farce and chaos last night. The SNP were not able to vote on their own motion on their own Opposition Day debate; the Conservatives walked out of the chamber in protest; and Lindsay Hoyle seemed tearful as he seemed to apologise for how the Gaza debate went down. On the episode,

What the Messi row reveals about Chinese football

40 min listen

The Argentinian football star Lionel Messi has been trending on Weibo – and unfortunately, not for a good reason. It all started when Messi sat out a match in Hong Kong earlier this month. His reason – that he was injured – wasn’t good enough for some fans, and keyboard nationalists quickly took offence when

Do accents still matter in politics?

14 min listen

The new MP for Kingswood has been under fire for apparently changing his accent over the course of his political career. Does this matter? And if so, what does this tell us about British politics today? Cindy Yu talks to James Heale and author and former cabinet minister, Nadine Dorries. Produced by Cindy Yu and

Is the Labour party already fractured?

25 min listen

Having ditched the green investment pledge, Keir Starmer faces questions over what the Labour party actually stands for. And without a clear vision, how can the Labour leader hold together a divided party? Cindy Yu speaks to Fraser Nelson and former Labour advisor Ayesha Hazarika.

What Liz Truss’s PopCon launch was really about

11 min listen

Liz Truss is back! This time with a conference called ‘Popular Conservatism’, bringing together voices in the Conservative party and aiming to ‘deliver popular conservative policies’. But what does the event really tells us about the state of right wing political thought in the UK today, and why were some of Truss’s key allies not

Why do people join the CCP?

36 min listen

At last count, the Chinese Communist Party has 98 million members, more people than the population of Germany. Its membership also continues to grow, making it one of the most successful and resilient political parties of the last a hundred years, perhaps with the exception of India’s BJP, which boasts 180 million members. And yet

Richard Dawkins, Douglas Murray and Cindy Yu

31 min listen

On this episode, Richard Dawkins explains how to convert an atheist like him to a Christian (00:37), Lisa Haseldine says the German army is in a dire state (05:53), Douglas Murray looks at the return of the Trump show (12:44), Cindy Yu reviews a Chinese intelligence officers account of life under the CCP (20:14), and

An insider’s account of the CCP’s stranglehold on China

All families have secrets, but few family histories are classified by the state. After the death of Snow’s father, his study is cleared out by officials from the Chinese Communist party; but Snow discovers letters and unmarked hard drives hidden in hollowed-out dictionaries that they’d missed. The material reveals that her father was a high-ranking

Was China’s economic boom ‘made in America’?

53 min listen

Today, the US and China are at loggerheads. There’s renewed talk of a Cold War as Washington finds various ways to cut China out of key supply chains and to block China’s economic development in areas like semiconductors and renewables. There’s trade, of course, but the imbalance in that (some $370 billion in 2022) tilts

Is the ERG a spent force?

12 min listen

After much back and forth, the Rwanda Bill passed last night with only 11 votes against while other critics, such as Lee Anderson who resigned his party role, abstained. Rishi Sunak can celebrate a small victory as it appears that the Brexit ‘Spartans’ of yesteryear are something of a spent force today. Cindy Yu talks

Cindy Yu, Mary Wakefield and Natasha Feroze

18 min listen

This week: Cindy Yu reads her piece ahead of the Taiwanese elections (00:54), Mary Wakefield discusses the US opioid crisis which she fears has come to the UK (07:13), and Natasha Feroze tells us about the rise of relationship contracts (13:26).  Produced and presented by Oscar Edmondson. 

Taiwan can’t escape China’s shadow

The Taiwanese rock band Mayday – ‘the Beatles of the Chinese-speaking world’ – are being investigated by the Chinese Communist party for the crime of lip syncing. Local authorities are combing through recordings of Mayday’s Shanghai concerts from November looking for evidence of ‘deceptive fake-singing’, as the CCP calls it, which has been illegal in

What lies at the root of the India-China rivalry?

45 min listen

India is the fifth largest economy in the world, and now has a population larger than China’s. It’s no surprise, then, that officials in Washington often see India as a powerful non-western bulwark to growing Chinese power. On this podcast, I look at where China and India’s rivalry comes from. How much have long-lasting skirmishes

2023: The year in review

27 min listen

How well did Rishi Sunak do on his five pledges? Are we any clearer on what Keir Starmer stands for? Is the SNP done for in Scotland? On this episode, Cindy Yu, Katy Balls, James Heale and Coffee House Shots regular Stephen Bush look back on the past year in British politics. Produced by Cindy

Who will be Taiwan’s next President?

43 min listen

Taiwan goes to the polls in just over a month. This is an election that could have wide repercussions, given the island’s status as a potential flashpoint in the coming years. The incumbent President, Tsai Ing-wen, is coming to the end of two elected terms, meaning that she cannot run again. Her party’s chosen successor

Is Rishi’s Rwanda Bill doomed?

10 min listen

Rishi Sunak is stuck in a migration quagmire and will be spending the weekend drumming up support from MPs ahead of the vote on his amended Rwanda bill on Tuesday. He will be hoping for a Christmas miracle in the form of support from both One Nation MPs and those on the right of the

Will Boris surprise at the Covid inquiry?

13 min listen

As Matt Hancock appears before the Covid inquiry for a second day, we take a look at the revelations from the former health secretary, including the allegation that involving the Prime Minister and former prime minister, Boris Johnson. Both are due to be up at the Covid inquiry in the coming weeks. Cindy Yu talks

Carbon capture: how China cornered the green market

30 min listen

On the podcast: In her cover piece for the magazine, The Spectator’s assistant editor Cindy Yu – writing ahead of the COP28 summit this weekend – describes how China has cornered the renewables market. She joins the podcast alongside Akshat Rathi, senior climate reporter for Bloomberg and author of Climate Capitalism: Winning the Global Race to Zero Emissions, to investigate China’s

How China cornered the green market

When Rishi Sunak announced that the 2030 ban on new petrol and diesel cars would be delayed by five years, he framed it as a common-sense move. What he didn’t say is that he had been advised that, had the original deadline stuck, Britain’s electric vehicle (EV) market would have been handed over to China.

Dialect and identity: is Mandarin bad for China?

44 min listen

Across the span of China, a country as big as Europe, there are countless regional dialects and accents – perhaps even languages. Often, they’re mutually unintelligible. The Chinese call these ‘fangyan’, and each Chinese person will likely be able to speak at least one fangyan, while also understanding Standard Mandarin, the official language of the