Seriously, I feel pressured to bring something fun to you, at least not appearing to be a hell-bent crusader. But then again, it’s hard to be cute when China is due to legalize disappearance and secret detention—something China has been doing all along anyway but now it will be doing it legally—of those who is deemed to be “harming the national security.” If you have read my recent post “Drinking Tea with the State Security Police”, you know how liberally that harm can be claimed. And this is not the only thing nauseating coming out of the Two Meetings (两会). Click date below for link to the original.
In light of the “KGB clause” (termed by Hu Jia (胡佳), one of China’s most respected dissidents), two lawyers ask, “What kind of country is China?”
- 袁裕来律师 /Yuan Yulai/(lawyer in Zhejiang, specializing in administrative procedures)/: All of a sudden, someone disappears, and, for months, no one knows his whereabouts. But he disappears legally. What kind of country is this?
- 天勇律师江 /Lawyer Jiang Tianyong/(renowned human rights lawyer)/: Last year, a friend of mine disappeared for two months. Family and friends looked for him everywhere, reported to the police, but didn’t find him. Two months later he returned, his wife received a dozen or so photographs of him with women in bed. The couple fought and filed for divorce. His younger brother was fired from his job for no particular reasons. He told me later that, over the two months, he was repeatedly beaten and 14 times he lost consciousness. Sometimes he was given only one piece of bread to eat in three days. Other times, he was forced to be in bed with a woman and embrace her….What kind of country is this?
- 文涛@wentommy/(former reporter with Global Times English edition, fired for reporting on a protest led by Ai Weiwei against forced demolition of an art area in Beijing by unidentified thugs in 2010 ) /: I once had a respectable job, [my history ] was rather clearly defined, and I was lawful in both my private and public life. But even I was detained for 83 days for I don’t know whatever reason. Not a single organization, nobody, not even Taliban, has claimed responsibility for my detention. When endorsing the new revisions to the Criminal Procedure Law, legislators believe they are fighting against the enemies of the state, but pretty soon, they will find the enemies are none other than themselves. The worst time is when no one feels safe. And don’t laugh—we’re all in it.
8:59 AM – 8 Mar 12via 母盟 32 Retweets 2 Favorites
- 五岳散人/Wu Yue San Ren/Idle man over the five mountains/(well-known opinion leader, restaurateur) /: On March 5, 1970, Yu Luoke (遇罗克) was executed for writing On Family Origin (a broadside, self-published in 1966 by the then 24-year-old young man, against targeting individuals according to family background). March 5 is also Lei Feng’s Day. Putting the two side by side, Yu Luoke is the real soldier. It doesn’t matter whether there is one more or one fewer Lei Feng; but for a nation, it matters very much whether we have more or fewer Yu Luoke.
Li Xiaolin (李小琳), member of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, Chairwoman of China Power International Development Ltd., and daughter of the former Prime Minister Li Peng (李鹏), proposed to establish morality file on each citizen so as to “discipline everyone and make sure everyone has a sense of shame.” As soon as her words were out, netizens pointed out how shamelessly she got her degree from Tsinghua University and how shamelessly her father oversaw the crackdown of the 1989 student movement. And I can assure you that there are more shameless things about the Lis that netizens can’t put their fingers on.
- 叶匡政 /Ye Kuangzheng/(Poet, cultural critic)/: The most terrifying proposal we have heard over the last few days is the one by Li Xiaolin to establish morality file on each citizen. The next step would then be issuing “Good Citizen Certificate.” The government doesn’t have to worry about the morality of the people; it is the people who need to be concerned with the ethics of the government. The Chinese government has been talking about anti-corruption for years, but no representative has so far proposed to adopt Government Ethics Act. …
- 袁裕来律师 /Lawyer Yuan Yulai/: Everyone is speculating about Bo Xilai’s fate, trying to outdo each other with more reliable sources or more superior analysis. It’s such a bore. The court is the court of a few princes; if Bo outrages them, he finds a well-connected friend, or a powerful uncle, to lobby on his behalf. If successful, Bo will pass through; if not, he’ll just step aside. That’s that, and it doesn’t seem to be so different from how we go about our own circle of friends.
On March 6, the deputy minister of the Ministry of Health admitted that “organs harvested from the executed prisoners are the main source of organ transplant in China.” Okay, one item off China’s long list of state secrets, but before we go, let’s refresh our memory:
- Mao Qun’an (毛群安), spokesman of the Ministry of Health, said in April, 2006: “Some overseas media purposefully fabricate the lie that China has been taking organs from executed prisoners for transplant. It is a malicious vilification of China’s judicial system. They misinform the public both inside and outside China, and they do so from ulterior motives.” (link)
Now, there are theories why China owns it up now and some believe it is to divert attention from something more sinister. But I will leave it to another time.