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Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Beijing hasn’t changed


Taipei Times: This year marks two anniversaries that are testimony to the brutality and ruthlessness of China’s despotic one-party state: the Tiananmen Square Massacre and the persecution of Falun Gong.

Twenty years ago on June 4, the world watched in horror as troops with tanks and machine guns stormed Tiananmen Square and crushed unarmed students who had gathered to demand democratic reform. Hundreds, possibly thousands, were killed.

On July 20, 1999, the regime launched the persecution of Falun Gong, complete with its own Krystallnacht-type middle-of-the-night mass arrests. Ten years later, the torturing and killing continue, with Falun Gong practitioners composing half of the quarter million labor-camp prisoners in China, US State Department figures show.

The June 1989 protests, which took place in many cities across China and involved millions, was a courageous bid to escape the repressive yoke of communism.

But alas, it wasn’t to be. While China’s economy has surged ahead, human rights and freedom of opinion for the Chinese people is still a pipe dream.

The nature of the Beijing regime is repression and killing. It’s a pattern begun by chairman Mao Zedong (毛澤東) that has not let up — it’s just done more covertly these days. The Tiananmen Square Massacre and the crackdown on Falun Gong, a non-political spiritual discipline, are proof of that. This particular leopard has not changed its spots.

I just hope that those who want to see China become the next great world power remember this.

JOAN QUAIN

Victoria, Canada

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