The Canada file: With one month to go until Canada's election, for which we have endorsed the opposition Conservatives, events from the Great White North will receive added prominence between now and then. We start with the Ignorant Comment of the Day, won by Paul Waldie (Globe and Mail) for taking a case on possible Communist espionage in Canada (third, lead, lead, third, and sixth items) and turning it into an immigration puff piece. Kevin Steele, Western Standard, scores the Enlightened Comment of the Day by tracing the reality Waldie ignored (Shotgun). Fellow Friendly Blog Between Heaven and Earth highlights the Canadian Labour Congress report on toy making in Communist China. Finally, the British Columbia-based Asian Pacific Post tells the harrowing tale of a mother in Hunan province who was on the run for five months, escaped a Communist hospital, and had a Caesarian-section delivery, all to save her second child from the cadres' hideous "one child" policy.
Luo Gan was in Shanwei just before the shooting: The Epoch Times is reporting that Luo Gan, the Politburo Standing Committee member who was in Hanyuan just before the shooting started last year, "clandestinely arrived in Shanwei just before departing overseas," providing greater evidence the Shanwei massacre was at least condoned and probably encouraged by the Communist leadership in Beijing. There are also reports that cadres in the city personally stand to gain from the power plant at the center of the dispute. Gu Qinger and Gao Ling (Epoch Times) have the latest on the torture and fear in Shanwei, and Ye Deming (also Epoch Times) gives the background on the brutal Luo.
Communists charge New York Times journalist: Zhao Yan, the New York Times researcher and dissident journalist jailed last year, was finally indicted by the Communists for "fraud and illegally releasing state secrets" (CNN). His actual crime was revealing Jiang Zemin's plans to leave the Central Military Commission last year. Jiang's successor, Hu Jintao, has personally backed Zhao's persecution (fourth item).
PEN grants awards, expresses concern for Shi Tao's health under forced labor: The Independent Chinese PEN Center announced the Free-to-write and Lin Zhao Memorial awards for 2005. The former went to Beijing write Wu Si, the latter to university professor Lu Xuesong (Epoch Times). Meanwhile, International PEN expressed concern for Shi Tao (fourteenth, fifth, lead, third, eighth, seventh, third, fifth, eighth, last, and third items) "following reports that he is suffering from respiratory problems and a skin inflammation as a result of forced labor" (Boxun).
Communist thugs beaten priests and nuns, then police interrogate them: Another land dispute with a Catholic Church turned ugly, this time in Tianjin, where five priests and nuns were beaten by "more than 30 thugs" (Central News Agency, Taiwan, via Epoch Times). The police responded by detaining the priests and nuns for interrogation.
Dissident seized in Burma loses Beijing appeal: Peng Ming, an exiled dissident who according to associates went to Burma "to set up a haven for fleeing Chinese dissidents" (BBC), lost the appeal of the life sentence imposed upon him by the Communists, who claim he was "setting up a terrorist training base in Burma and inciting others to murder and kidnap people." They slapped the same charges, and sentence, on Wang Bingzhang.
Communist China shuts down Gay/Lesbian Event: Two days before the Beijing Gay and Lesbian Culture Festival was to begin, Communist China banned them from the location where it was to take place (Boxun). The festival was moved, but the new location was raided by police just before it was to begin. The shutdown, part of a longtime crackdown against homosexual activism in Communist China, may have also had something to do with the festival's focus on "sexual rights and health, specifically HIV/AIDS." They wouldn't want anyone to mention the one million infected in Henan Province from an earlier Communist blood drive (sixth, fourth, and sixth items).
Communists in Beijing and Hong Kong lash out at pro-democracy politicians: Stuck with the reality that their efforts at "reform" bait-and-switch were shot down by the pro-democracy members of Hong Kong's Legislative Council (tenth, second, and seventh items), the cadres in Beijing ripped the democracy supporters (BBC), as did their minions in the Hong Kong press (BBC). The anti-Communist Apple Daily backed the democrats.
Communist China says cadmium spill has been dammed up: Cadres in Guangdong Province, home of the cadmium-tainted Bei River (sixth item) now insist that the sludge "has been stopped by a dam, ensuring the water remains safe to use downstream" (BBC). Of course, the cadres in Jilin said the same thing about their benzene-tainted Songhua (seventh, fourth, ninth, fourth, fourth, fifth, fourth, fifth, third, seventh, and tenth items).
Mining officials punished (sort of), but no mines closed by the Communists: The cadres announced they had "taken action against more than 200 officials in connection with six major coal mining accidents" (BBC). However, nearly half of said officials will keep their jobs. More importantly, no mention was made of mines that had been shut down, despite earlier pledges to shut down thousands of them (sixth and eighth items).
Communists insist their "development" is "peaceful"; Japan remains unconvinced: Communist China issued a new white paper insisting it will "stick to the road of peaceful development" (Washington Post). It took little time for Japan to bring us all back to reality. New Opposition Leader Seiji Maehara called the Communist regime a "realistic threat" (World Net Daily). Foreign Minister Taro Aso went even further: "a neighbor with one billion people equipped with nuclear bombs and has expanded its military outlays by double digits for 17 years in a row, and it is unclear as to what this is being used for . . . It is beginning to be a considerable threat" (BBC). Also reporting: Cybercast News, United Press International via Washington Times
Communist China hosts OPEC officials: America may be grabbing the headlines in the Middle East, but Communist China certainly isn't avoiding the place. The cadres in Beijing are hosting the first ever talks between themselves and officials from the Mideast-heavy Oil Producing and Exporting Countries (OPEC) group. Sadly, the BBC story made no mention of Communist support for OPEC more terrorist-minded members.
Judge says cleared Uighurs are illegally held, but he cannot release them: Add District Court Judge James Robertson to the list of people (including this quarter) maddeningly frustrated by the fate of Uighurs from occupied East Turkestan who have been cleared of terrorist suspicion but can't leave Guantanamo Bay. Robertson called the detention "unlawful" (UPI via Washington Times), but could find nothing in the law that gave him the power to act. The U.S. has been trying to find a home for the Uighurs (except here), but have been rebuffed at every turn (fifth item).
The Falun Gong War overseas: In San Francisco, the Chinese Chamber of Commerce, which organizers the city's Chinese New Year Parade, are refusing to let Falun Gong practitioners participate (Epoch Times). In New Zealand, Wellington's city council has ordered the arrest of practitioners protesting in front of the Communist Embassy (Epoch Times). Finally, the beating of demonstrating practitioners in Argentina, and the government's refusal to stop it, earns opprobrium in Australia (Epoch Times).
Chen Yonglin speaks: The former Communist consular officer who defected to expose the Communists' international espionage activities testifies to the Sydney Tribunal during the Trial of the Chinese Communist Party for Crimes against Humanity about the persecution of Falun Gong (Epoch Times).
On Communist China and Christmas: Kery Nunez, Epoch Times, reveals how her attempts to avoid "Made in China" this Christmas helped her discover its true meaning.
On Stalinist North Korea: China Freedom Blog Alliance Member One Free Korea has the latest on the Stalinist counterfeiting flap, including the Communists trying to provide cover for their would-be colony, while guest blogger Andy Jackson wraps up his reports from the Seoul conference on human rights in the Stalinist North.