Thursday, April 20, 2006

China in the News

The MSM is finally beginning to cover news of the coerced organ harvesting from Falun Gong political prisoners in China.
Top British transplant surgeons have accused China of harvesting the organs of thousands of executed prisoners a year to sell for transplants.
In a statement released on Wednesday, the British Transplantation Society condemned the practice as unacceptable and a breach of human rights.

The move comes less than a week after Chinese officials publicly denied the practice...

Professor Stephen Wigmore, who chairs the society's ethics committee, told the BBC that the speed of matching donors and patients, sometimes as little as a week, implied prisoners were being selected before execution.

Chinese officials deny the allegations.

Just last week a Chinese health official said publicly that organs from executed prisoners were sometimes used, but only with prior permission and in a very few cases...

The emergence of transplant tourism has made the sale of health organs even more lucrative.

Patients increasingly come from Western countries, including the UK, as well as Japan and South Korea...

Secrecy surrounding executions in China has always made it difficult to gather facts.


The SeattlePI covers news of a small protest against Hu and the treatment of the Falun Gong in Washington, as Hu visited Bill Gates, a rally with about 200 people

Today, as Hu visited the White House, he was interrrupted by a journalist heckler who writes for Epoch Times, a Falun Gong paper, protesting the human rights abuses of Falun Gong prisoners in China.
The protester interrupted the ceremony by shouting to Bush to stop the Chinese president from "persecuting the Falun Gong."
Michelle Malkin has the video

It seems likely that Hu will be unused to dealing with heckling journalists, since, as Boris Johnson lets us know, the system works otherwise in China. There - reporters commended by government officials receive bonuses from their editors. Which nicely subverts the free practice of journalism with bribery essentially.
[T]he editor of one big paper recently admitted that he gave bonuses to reporters whose work was praised by the Ministry of Information. In many cities the journalists turn up at press conferences and are given little cash-stuffed envelopes to thank them for being there. When I asked the lecturers in journalism to name their professional heroes, they looked utterly bemused, eventually naming Edgar Snow, the American stooge and hagiographer of Mao. At the end of our session at the journalism college a pale, intense academic came up privately and said of course I was right to say that journalism should root out corruption, 'but we must also care about stability,' he said, and there is the nub.
Johnson is not yet ready to concede, as so many in Britain are already eager to do, that China is going to become the new world power:
But with Chinese per capita GDP still only $1,000 per year, and with all the corruption and inefficiency still generated by a one-party state, I am not yet convinced that we need to force all our children to learn Mandarin. If China is really to rule the world, she will need two things that America now has in superabundance: hard power and soft power.

As a military power, China is still relatively insignificant (her defence spending is smaller than that of the UK); and as for soft power - cultural projection abroad - what can China boast, apart from the occasional arrival in London of the state ballet or the Beijing People's Circus? ...

Soft power - cultural influence - is ultimately impossible without an appealing international brand, and for the foreseeable future China's international brand will be vitiated by her domestic political arrangements. China will never rule the world as long as the Forbidden City is adorned with the face of the biggest mass murderer in history. In the words of John Lennon, 'If you go carrying pictures of Chairman Mao/ You ain't gonna make it with anyone anyhow.'
And finally Bill Gertz reports that in the recent case of a Chinese man attempting to smuggle Chinese QW-2 anti-aircraft missiles into the United States, there is a Chinese military connection? Corruption? Or state policy? Whichever, it will certainly be denied.
Court papers made public yesterday in the case of a California man who pleaded guilty to trying to smuggle anti-aircraft missiles into the United States show that a Chinese general and state-run manufacturer are linked to the crime.

Chao Tung Wu, 51, of La Puente, Calif., pleaded guilty yesterday at U.S. District Court in Los Angeles to conspiracy to smuggle Chinese QW-2 anti-aircraft missiles into the United States. It was the first conviction under a 2004 anti-terrorism law aimed at preventing the spread of shoulder-fired and portable anti-aircraft missiles.

Wu and a second defendant who is awaiting trial, Yi Qing Chen, met an undercover FBI agent and sought to sell 200 QW-2s, as well as launcher and operational hardware for the missiles, according to court papers. A statement of facts read in court yesterday revealed that Wu had offered to provide enough missiles "for a regiment" of soldiers.

Wu told the undercover agent that the plan for getting the missiles out of China involved the help of a "corrupt customs broker" in China and falsified export papers, the statement said. The deal involved a "Gen. Wang" in China who was to supply the weapons.

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