By Gao Zhisheng, published: September 23, 2015
In a sudden move, according to sources, deputy secretary of State Tony Blinken is meeting families of Chinese political prisoners today, September 23rd, ahead of the Obama-Xi Jinping summit on Friday. Lawyer Gao Zhisheng’s wife is among those who are invited to the meeting which purportedly will discuss how human rights issues will be addressed during the summit. Gao Zhisheng was released from prison on August 7, 2014, but a year later he is still under house arrest and denied of proper medical treatment and freedom to travel. Calls for the U. S. to help the Gao family to reunite has gone fruitless. Ms. Geng He cancelled her trip and posted Gao’s message to her on Twitter. China Change offers an unauthorized translation below. – The Editors
When he heard that I was going to visit Washington to meet the Deputy Secretary of State, Gao Zhisheng wrote an urgent letter telling me not to go. It is a stirring letter, so I am publishing it for everyone.”
Dear wife, when I first heard that you were going to meet the Deputy Secretary of State in private on the 23rd, I thought it was very inappropriate. Forgive my direct speech: I strongly oppose this.
Firstly, even if it was an open meeting with the president, it’s not what we need right now—how much less a private meeting with his subordinate. Why go about it so secretly? What is there to be afraid of? Who’s the one afraid? Who doesn’t want to be seen in the light of day holding the meeting?
Secondly, while I don’t harbor any blame for any similar past meetings, at this point, it won’t help. In the future there shouldn’t be similar situations, especially at a time like now, when the Party head is rubbing shoulders and celebrating with American politicians.
Thirdly, Western politicians as a whole have a long history of getting along with evil regimes for their own selfish and greedy ends. During the final 60 years of the Qing Dynasty, Western powers knew how bad and dark the dynastic rule was, but they cooperated with that regime in order to gain special privileges; in 1941 America provided steel, fuel, and other materiel for the Japanese imperialist invaders conducting massacres in China. Since the Clinton era, the American political class has disregarded the basic calls of humanity and muddied itself by getting so close to the sinister Communist Party. When these politicians raise their glasses together, justice, human dignity, and conscience, are all given a price tag. The Party officials who commit crimes against humanity still go about with their heads high, having long forgotten their indelible bloody crimes. The Western politicians who have become their accomplices have forsaken the conscience and sense of honor that humans should have.
The wicked regime that has persecuted the Chinese people for 66 years shall collapse in 2017, a great people will eventually stand up. The era of Western politicians making deals with the despicable dregs of China, for their own profit, will be a thing of the past… Before that happens, you shouldn’t have more contact with those people. China’s change will be realized without them. When that happens, these shortsighted, greedy people will find that more than their reputation is damaged. Your effort to help me, especially your tireless effort in trying to get help from them, is too much for me to bear. But be sure to stay close to ordinary Americans. I love the American people, just as I have always loved American values. It was American people and values that gave you, my wife, and our two children, a new life and new hope.
During this temporary hardship, loving our children and relying on one another, and you taking care of yourself is more important than anything else to me. Please believe that I am acting in the face of this inhuman circumstance on the basis of love and responsibility. In about two years, when the Communist Party is no more, we’ll all as a family reunite in Beijing. I’ve never let you down before.
I love you, and thank you for your unfailing strength to shoulder all the responsibilities!
Gao Zhisheng, September 22, 2015
Gao Zhisheng (高智晟) is a prominent Chinese human rights lawyer. Once praised by the Ministry of Justice in 2001, Gao began taking on sensitive political cases, including those involving corrupt officials, rights activists, and in particular persecuted practitioners of Falun Gong. In 2005 he himself became a target of persecution by Communist Party security forces for his legal work, and over the following decade was detained without due process numerous times and subject to extensive torture. He was released from a three-year prison sentence last August, and is currently under a form of illegal house arrest in the far western region of Xinjiang.
AP Exclusive: Recent interview with Gao Zhisheng, September 23, 2015.
Save Gao Zhisheng, by Yaxue Cao,
Chronology of Gao Zhisheng by Human Rights Watch, updated on July 31, 2014
Dark Night, Dark Hood, and Kidnapping by the Dark Mafia, Gao Zhisheng’s account of his torment in 2007.
Gao Zhisheng, Missing Chinese Lawyer, Described Torture Before Disappearing, AP, January 2011.
Legal Gadfly Bites Hard, and Beijing Slaps Him, by Joseph Kahn, New York Times’ profile in 2005.
On the Eve of Gao Zhisheng’s Release, by Yaxue Cao
Transcending Fear, an extraordinary documentary about Gao Zhisheng, is available on Youtube.