Friday, May 04, 2012

Hillary, HELP!

Very likely because he is wise in the ways of Chinese fascism and also because he knows his family has been put in jeopardy by his daring escape from house arrest, Chen Guangcheng,  a blind activist who has publically called attention to Communist China’s forced abortion policy, will not go gentle into that good night.
Chen’s safety and the safety of his family now rest on his ability to publicize his plight.
After his escape from Chinese thugs who previously had beaten both Chen and his wife, the Chinese human rights activist took refuge for several days in the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. On the eve of important talks between the U.S. and China, most certainly a feather in President Barack Obama’s campaign cap, this orphan from oppression showed up on the doorstep of the embassy, generally considered for purposes of international law a piece of the U.S. mainland.
When Chen stepped into the American Embassy in Bejing, he set his foot on the same American shore over which the Statue of Liberty lifts its lamp:
"Give me your tired, your poor,
"Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
"The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
"Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
"I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
And there is no embassy official, no Obama administration official, no Secretary of State who does not know that in leaving the embassy Chen traveled from freedom back to prison.

Very quickly, arrangements were made between the U.S. and China to cough up what must have seemed to U.S. and Chinese diplomats a bothersome political hairball. Hours after Chen’s plight appeared in newspapers across the United States and Europe, the prisoner was out of the embassy and on his way to a hospital, there to be treated for a for an injury he had sustained during his flight from house arrest to the U.S. Embassy. Arrangements had been made to keep Chen in China. Since the trumped up charges against him had not been dropped – the prisoner had been accused of damaging property and "organizing a mob to disturb traffic" – the U.S. Embassy refugee American diplomats turned over to his persecutors was still a prisoner.

At the hospital, Chen called a hearing, according to a story in the The Hill, “set up to explore his efforts to leave China and escape persecution.

"’I want to meet with Secretary Clinton,’ he said on the phone. ‘I hope I can get more help from her. I also want to thank her face to face.’
“Chen added that he is most concerned with his family, and said, ‘I really want to know what's going on with them.’"
Mrs. Clinton, who has often spoken out against oppression by authoritarian regimes other than China, no doubt wishes to be of service.

According to the most recent report in the New York Times,  Mrs Clinton announced “she was encouraged by a statement earlier on Friday from China’s Foreign Ministry that said Mr. Chen could apply to study outside China. The proposal appeared to offer the possibility of a breakthrough in the crisis.”

However, totalitarian regimes are famous for holding family members as hostage to insure the “good behavior” of outspoken foreign travelers, and Mrs. Clinton made no mention of Chen’s family, which seems to be his primary concern.

President of China Aid Bob Fu seems confident, according to a report in the Heritage Foundation, that Bejing would be amenable to U.S. demands for asylum for Chen and his family.

If the U.S. government and President Obama have the will and determination to help do that, I think the Chinese government will let them go,”Mr. Fu said.

Chen told Mr. Fu that he “felt pressure to leave,” a charge denied by American officials.

Heritage reported in its story:

“But according to Fu, an American official relayed threats from the Chinese government that Gaungcheng’s wife and children would be returned to Shandong, which Fu described as “hell” for the abuse in captivity they have received in there for the past seven years, if Gaungcheng did not leave the American embassy.

“Hu wondered why American officials would relay the threat of returning them to their home-turned-prison if not to encourage Gaungcheng to return to Chinese soil.”

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