Wednesday, June 15, 2005

News of the Day (June 15)

Farmers on land wanted by Communist power company attacked by thugs: A group of farmers in Shengyou “resisting official demands to surrender land to a state-owned power plant” (Washington Post) were attacked by hundreds of thugs “armed with shotguns, clubs and pipes.” Six farmers died and at least one hundred others were injured. The farmers, who despite the bloody assault refused to yield, have now “occupied the local headquarters of the ruling Communist Party, where they placed the bodies of six of their slain compatriots” after “party officials abandoned the building and fled town, apparently because they feared they would be blamed for the killings.” Among the many signs that such blame is justified: “Police failed to respond to calls for help until nearly six hours later, residents said, long after the assailants had departed.” Such attacks are becoming a common result of the Communists’ thirst for power (Shanghai has gone to rationing it – BBC) combined with the local cadres lining their pockets and throwing off residents to meet the need. The most dramatic example was last year’s Hanyuan County massacre.

Two more former cadres come forward to stand with Chen and Hao: Zhong Guichun was once a police officer in Communist China charged with monitoring Falun Gong. He soon “felt that Falun Gong was a good practice that could only bring benefits to people and society” (Epoch Times) and became a practitioner. For this he was jailed and sent to a labor camp before escaping to New Zealand. This week, he came forward to tell his story, and stand by his fellow escapees, Chen Yonglin and Hao Fengjun, and their accounts of overseas Communist spy networks. Meanwhile, Yuan Hongbing, a former Beijing professor, told Australia's ABC wire service (via Newsmax) that Communist China has plans to make Australia a “political colony,” which “means CCP [Chinese Communist Party] will use their ideology to influence Australia's politics and gradually to turn Australia to betray its fundamental principle of freedom and democracy.” He also “says he witnessed the work of the 1,000 spies defecting Chinese diplomat Chen Yonglin has spoken about.” Yuan’s protection visa application is still under review in Australia. We now add his name to Chen and Hao in our call for the U.S. to grant them asylum.

On Trade with Communist China: One of the ways the Communists “influence Australia's politics” is through trade and business ties (second item, second item). AAP (via Epoch Times) notes that several of the Australians engaged in business in Communist China “are having to deal with tough ethical dilemmas and not all are up to the challenge.” Meanwhile, Ethan Gutmann, author of Losing the New China, gives a scathing review of how American businessmen in Communist China have become an integral part of the corrupt regime in remarks reprinted by the Epoch Times.

EU plan to lift arms embargo set aside, but Israeli politician defends arms sales: The European Union “put off a plan to lift an arms embargo against China” (Cybercast News). In light of the fact that France’s push to lift the arms bad ran into opposition from several member states – “Even Germany, France's ally in the initiative, began to back away” – this comes as no surprise. However, no such good news came from Israel, where U.S. pressure on its arms sales (third item) to the Communists sparked Yuval Steinitz, chairman of its foreign affairs and defense committee, to insist “Israel must retain a measure of independence from its main ally” (Washington Times, last item).

Will House restore “one child” funding? The House of Representatives “is preparing to vote on an amendement (sic) that would restore U.S. funding for a United Nations agency accused of subsidizing communist China's coercive population control program” (World Net Daily). Said agency, the United Nations Population Fund, was found to “assist government efforts to force married couples to have only one or two children at most, according to an investigation by the Population Research Institute in 2001 and determinations by the U.S. State Department in 2002 and 2004.” The vote could come as early as today. Tell your Representative to vote no.

Majority-Communist committee puts Tsang on greased skids to “election” win: Acting Hong Kong Chief executive Donald Tsang “won 710 nominations from the 800-member group which chooses the territory's chief executive” (CNN), ensuring said panel, largely chosen by Communist China, would “elect” Tsang as the new leader. While most consider Tsang himself a vast improvement over Tung Chee-hwa (BBC), the nature of the “election” was derided by at least one pro-democracy activist as “a farce.”

Oops! AIDS activists still have to battle Communists: Less than twenty-four hours after a Communist vice health minister tried to sound sympathetic to AIDS sufferers (seventh item), Human Rights Watch pointed to the unspoken truth: “people working with Aids patients face intimidation and even imprisonment,” leaving the BBC to comment “China's communist government may be changing its attitude to those with Aids, but it appears it is still deeply hostile to those trying to help.” This corner still awaits the Communists’ new attitude in Henan, where one million still suffer from AIDS due to the cadres’ lack of hygienic standards during a 1980’s blood drive (fourth item).

Bush meeting with SNK dissident makes waves: Peter Baker and Glenn Kessler, Washington Post, examine the fallout from the President’s meetings with prominent dissidents, including former Stalinist prisoner Kang Chol Hwan (eleventh item).

On SNK’s nuclear arsenal: Speaking of “fallout,” Assistant Secretary of State for East Asia Christopher Hill, the Bush Administration’s point man on Stalinist North Korea’s nuclear weapons, told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee of his confidence that the regime will “give them up” – “The real issue for them is what are the terms” (Washington Times). Beyond that, Hill was maddeningly vague, leading Senator Joseph Biden (D-Delaware) to note that the U.S. “has been paralyzed by internal policy divisions.” Biden was joined in that criticism by Senator Chuck Hagel, (R-Nebraska), the editors of the Washington Times, and this corner, although we stand alone in calling for northern Korea’s liberation. Will they never learn?

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