Over at Accidental Blogger a remembrance of travels in Xinjiang/East Turkestan. I think the best model for what's going on in China right now is a race riot catalyzed by economic resentment. Uighurs seem to be attacking Hui as well as Han, the Hui being Chinese speakers who are of Muslim background (and by and large are physically indistinguishable from the Han, for example, the Vice Premier of China is a Hui).. Though China is still a poor country much of it is lurching toward modernity; the Uighurs of Xinjiang are an exception to this trend. Related:Post from last year.