John Oliver has been scrubbed from Chinese social media site Weibo, after insulting President Xi Jinping during the latest episode of “Last Week Tonight.”
“While China has never exactly been known as a haven for free expression, (Xi) has clamped down noticeably on any form of dissent whatsoever,” Oliver said.
Proving Oliver’s point, Chinese censors have removed any mention of the show or the host from before June 12 on Weibo.
“Under Xi Jinping, China is becoming more authoritarian, just as it has major plans for expansion onto the world stage,” Oliver added. “It is arguably more important than ever that America be strategic and tactical about how to deal with China.”
Oliver also joked about Xi’s resemblance to Winnie the Pooh.
“Last Week Tonight” isn’t aired in China, but the show, along with several other American late-night programs, is usually uploaded to Chinese sites. The country has relied on the “Great Firewall,” as it has been dubbed, to stifle free speech online for years through a network of moderators, technical restraints and legislative regulations.