Oh Harry! What Have You Done?

Harry Wu Internationally Respected Champion Of Human Rights For China


Our colleagues who run @tibettruth recently launched an open appeal to the highly respected Chinese dissident, Mr Harry Wu and his organization the Laogai Museum, which is the leading research and campaign body on the issue of China’s slave labor camps. Having arranged last week an important  meeting on the human rights situation within Tibet, it was thought that due exposure would be given to China’s forcible sterilization of Tibetan women. After all this internationally known campaigner had previously spoken out on the subject of Chinese women suffering China’s coercive birth control program,  See Here so there was a hope for solidarity in exposing what is a major violation  of women’s rights in occupied Tibet.

On Friday June 8th @tibettruth contacted Harry Wu and his Institute via Twitter, here’s the record of their appeal:

“@TheHarryWu We wish your Laogai Conference Every Success & Applaud Your Remarkable Courage & Integrity, However We Do Have Some Concerns >> relating to the troubling issue of China’s forced sterilizations, a subject you have spoken out upon. >> likely-hood that once again a major human rights forum on China’s tyranny will do wonderful work YET give no exposure or >> or detail to the reality that Tibetan women are also being forcibly sterilized. We naturally are troubled by such a silence >> more so when one of your main panelists, the International Campaign For Tibet, has kept shamefully silent on the fact Tibetan >> women are subject to the horrifying atrocities of China’s population control program. We shall be posting further on this >>  We Have Challenged Your Guest Speaker Mary Beth Markey of the ICT to Address this question HERE http://bit.ly/LD5Huz >> As a main organizer & host for the conference on human rights violations in Tibet we call upon you & your organization to >> speak out on China’s forcible sterilization of Tibetan women. Continuing evasion and silence on this major human rights >> will completely undermine the credibility of orgs such as ICT while removing any moral integrity for them to speak >> on the issue of human rights in Tibet. We sincerely hope you may help us to ensure this subject is not ignored at your >> important conference. To that end we submit our report for your attention http://bit.ly/w5BGPn

For whatever reason this request was entirely ignored until on the last day of his Conference our colleagues received a private message in response to their tweets of June 12 “@LaogaiMuseum Our appeal was openly tweeted to @TheHarryWu on Friday June 8 Sadly No response >> We sincerely hope that your conference on human rights/Tibet did not ignore our appeal?” The message in reply stated:

“We apologize that we are unaware of your appeal. Please forward it to media@laogai.org, and we will ensure it gets to the appropriate people”

It was a disappointment to receive such a reply, as one of our many friends on Twitter  noted “all too little too late and evading entirely the appeal made by @tibettruth”.
Reading the Conference Statement
issued by Harry Wu and participants of his event there is not a single word on the atrocities being forced upon Tibetan women by China’s population control program, as anticipated by our Twitter colleagues. Once more evasion and silence has greeted this subject from those who gathered to discuss examine and condemn human rights violations in occupied Tibet. As another follower of @tibettruth stated “It’s very sad and I simply do not understand it”. Many will share that feeling at how and why such an eminent campaigner for human rights in China and a number of leading Tibetan organizations chose to ignore the forcible sterilization of Tibetan women. It is very troubling indeed and raises some key questions for Harry Wu a man of supreme integrity and amazing courage, yet whose decision to avoid this issue has invited scrutiny, as @tibettruth have since asked:

“We are asking publicly @Laogai Museum & @The HarryWu To Clarify If They Believe China’s Lie That Tibetan Women Are Not Forcibly Sterilized?” (Tweet Sent June 13)

We understand that this question continues to be ignored.

International Women’s Day Set To Again Ignore China’s Forced Sterilizations

Image: courtesy of @tibettruth

During previous activities to mark International Women’s Day on the 8th March much focus was rightly given to a range of themes. Unfortunately absent from the orchestrated championing of women’s human rights has been any prominent exposure concerning communist China’s treatment of women, and in particular its coercive population-control program. This year’s program looks likely to again ignore China’s sate engineered violence against women, indeed the only visible reference to China on the International Women’s Day website is a trumpeting that this day is a Chinese national holiday, hardly a cause for celebration given the harrowing reality of China’s targeting of women for forced sterilizations.These atrocities grossly violate the principle of freedom of choice and a woman’s right to control over her own body. In occupied Tibet, East Turkestan, Southern Mongolia, Manchuria and communist China women are denied these freedoms and subject to the dictate of a male-dominated regime that inflicts a series of draconian penalties; including financial/mental/physical coercion, forced sterilizations and forced abortions.

chinese propaganda

The extent of these state-engineered abuses is staggering, yet the collective apathy from the women’s movement is puzzling and alarming. Imagine the response if just one woman was dragged from her home in Washington DC, Paris or London, beaten, tied to a medical slab and forcibly sterilised. There would be riots on the streets and rightly so! Such barbarity is a central element in China’s population program and has traumatised countless women across the communist Chinese Empire and yet all we have from the concerned sisterhood is silence! How can supposed feminists claim to be genuinely concerned about human rights and yet ignore or deny the plight of women subject to this brutality?

What possible motivation or reasons may begin to understand such a troubling position? We must firstly discount any absence of evidence or testimony, as a wealth of detailed documentation has been assembled over the years, and material continues to emerge. Much of this has been made available to a number of women’s organisations, yet the indifference remains. Faced with years of in-action and fudging from women’s groups it seems we dealing, not with an absence of evidence, but a singular lack of integrity.

On an individual emotional level this is indeed an appalling subject and perhaps too horrific for some, better perhaps to pretend its not happening? For others not softened by such humanity it would appear that reducing global population levels is worth any price, including human rights violations (even the devastated lives of women across Tibet, East Turkestan and Communist China).

Perhaps others may hold all things Chinese, or socialist,  in fond regard and so shunt any inconvenient or odious manifestations of that culture or dogma into a siding, far away from any prying conscience. It appears easy for some, driven by their chosen world-view, to exclude any fact, which may destabilize a perspective that places economic rights above other freedoms. Surely all are equal and interdependent?


Consideration should also be given to the health of bank-balances, which for some women’s organisations may well have prospered considerably. As the saying goes ‘Silent Mouths Stuffed with Gold’ and one can only wonder to what degree the cynical and adamantine silence which has surrounded this issue is explained by merciless self-interest. Whatever the reasoning, this issue lies at the sensitive core of feminist ideology, touching, as it does, on freedom of choice and women having control over their own bodies. Such fundamental rights do not exist under communist Chinese rule, the state’s needs are seen as greater than those of the individual. It’s nearly eighteen years since delegates arrived in Beijing for the UN Conference on Women, fuelled by the noble vision of furthering women’s rights.

Yet during that time the systematic abuse against women has continued, making a mockery of the recommendations and agreements of the Platform for Action and Beijing Declaration. We were assured by the massed ranks of women’s groups, who attended, that active engagement with the Beijing Conference would help moderate the grim excesses of China’s totalitarian machine and improve the plight of women. As predicted by those organizations which boycotted the event the violations resulting from the program remain; forced sterilizations, torture, arbitrary arrests, forced abortions and infanticide.


Well one action you may wish to consider is contacting International Women’s Day and ask them, why each year they and their associates are silent on the subject of China’s forced sterilizations? They maybe contacted via Twitter at @womensday

However abhorrent this harrowing human rights issue, what is equally offensive is the cold-blooded response, which is shared by a considerable section of prominent women academics, campaigners and organizations. In remaining silent on the plight of Muslim-Uighur, Tibetan and Chinese women their inaction attracts the charge of complicity in a deliberate effort to conceal these atrocities.

Unlike the US Senate, Amnesty International USA,Congressional Committe on China, the British Medical Association, UK Parliamentary Foreign Parliamentary Committee and many other leading human rights groups and individuals, such as Dr Harry Wu, all of whom have acknowledged and condemned theses violations, many women’s organizations seem unwilling to engage this issue or campaign in support of their ‘sisters’. The traumatised women of East Turkestan, Tibet and communist China have little to thank them for and no reason to look forward to International Women’s Day.

CSW56 Another UN Session On Ignoring China’s Atrocities?

This Uyghur woman became another victim of China’s forced sterilization program


“Imagine the response if just one woman was dragged from her home in Washington DC, Paris or London, beaten, tied to a medical slab and forcibly sterilised. There would be riots on the streets and rightly so! Yet such violence is a central element in China’s population program and has traumatised countless women across the communist Chinese Empire. Sadly in the time since the Beijing Conference on Women all we have had is silence, how can anyone truly committed to the rights of women claim to be concerned about human rights, yet ignore or deny the plight of women subject to this brutality? Faced with years of in-action and evasion it seems we dealing, not with an absence of evidence, but a singular lack of integrity.” Extract from the Tibettruth Submission to the UN Commission on the Status of Women. View Here

From February 27 New York City will be the destination for a large number of female activists campaigning on a range of issues from women’s human rights to social and educational issues. In addition to that major international event a NGO women’s conference will also take place at which a number of key subjects relating to women’s rights will feature, enabling NGOs to submit ideas and raise concerns with the 56th Session of United Nations Commission On The Status Of Women (UNCSW56) conference

Absent however from both these events will be any examination of the abuses suffered by women as a consequence of China’s coercive population control program. Indeed in the months of preparations for the UNCSW 56 this major human rights subject has received virtually no attention from Women’s NGOs, despite the fact such organizations are aware of the atrocities inflicted upon women across the Chinese Empire.In 2010 Tibettruth drafted and distributed a document, which was submitted to the UNCSW and Women’s organizations.

You can read/download the document in full Here

It would be extremely helpful if you would contribute to the effort to ensure this issue is not concealed and ignored by sharing this with friends and colleagues. Thank you for your continuing support and interest.

Zero Tolerance On Feminism’s Selective Outrage

State Department February 14, 2012


Whenever America’s banker flies into DC there’s a scramble to the wardrobes by the folks on the hill  to find a suitably complimentary color, a clear leader in this obsequious race is Hillary Clinton, whose eye for an outfit  never fails to impress. As China’s Vice President Xi Jinping  met with U.S. Secretary of State for a luncheon yesterday Hillary was resplendent in a eye-watering red jacket. Politics and low fashion collided in an effort to make China’s next President feel right at home, and what better way than to be dressed in the color so appreciated by the Chinese Communist Party. Officials at the State Department appear to have been busy getting up to speed with China’s favored decorations for such occasions, which usually involve masses of artificial or natural flowers in various combinations of red and yellow. This charming combination had clearly not escaped the attention of covert operations who dutifully briefed staff at the Department on which color scheme would send the right psycho-graphic message to Mr Jinping, which no doubt explains the various items and shades which dominate in the photograph above!

It’s a stressful few days for Hillary, apart from the priority of having to fawn over the Chinese delegation and attend to the seemingly endless guest list of corporate heads all seeking a chance of grovelling before Xi Jinping, watched over by that éminence grise of US-China relations, Henry Kissinger, she is scheduled on Thursday February 16 to present the opening address at a conference to commemorate the Ninth Anniversary of the International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting. Organized by the State Department and held at the aesthetically pleasing surroundings of Benjamin Franklin Diplomatic Reception Room, it is an important event highlighting a troubling violation of human rights. A number of prominent guest will also be giving speeches, following presentations by Joe Crowley and Hillary’s go to lady, Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, Melanne Verveer. These include, Molly Melching, Founder and Director of the non-governmental organization Tostan; Imam Mohamed Magid, President of the Islamic Society of North America; Thomas von der Osten-Sacken, General Manager of the German non-governmental organization Association for Crisis Assistance and Development Co-operation (WADI); Nafissatou J. Diop Director of the United Nations Population Fund and United Nations International Children’s Fund Joint Programme on FGM/C; and Zeinab Eyega, Executive Director of the Sauti Yetu Center for African Women.

Anyone concerned with women’s human rights will of course welcome this meeting and its objectives in terms of ending the practice of FGM and raising awareness of this harrowing subject, that it has established an international day of opposition reflects the degree of concern and political importance it has attracted, commanding the supported by Hillary and her Department. Of course Secretary Clinton is no stranger to issues of women’s human rights, and has on occasion spoken out on that equally disturbing issue, China’s policy of forcible sterilizations, on one memorable occasion, prior to the 1995 UN World Conference on Women in Beijing.


Apart however from such isolated criticisms a veil of silence and indifference surrounds the subject of China’s medical atrocities, this contrasts markedly with the response to female genital mutilation, to which feminists. women’s NGOs and bodies such as the United Nations Fund for Population and United Nations Commission On The Status of Women are rightly opposed. It is a vicious disfigurement and abuse of a woman’s freedom of control over her own body.to cut that area of female anatomy for the purposes of cultural practice has attracted concerted and fierce opposition.

What is disappointing is that the same people (including invited speakers at the  International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation) are utterly silent on China’s mass programs of forced sterilizations. Yet, is the slicing open of a woman against her will, forcibly sterilized through such ‘surgery’, any less barbarous than the practice of FGM? Clearly not as both constitute a violent abuse of women’s human rights. Yet the influential and agitated voices of condemnation on female genital mutilation, many of who will be attending the meeting, maintain a cold hearted silence on the countless numbers of women forcibly sterilized by China.

While we congratulate Ms Clinton for her championing of human rights and support this event, its moral   integrity is demeaned by the worrying absence of an equivalent day of action against China’s program of forced sterilizations. How about it Hillary? Will the State Department organize an International Day of Zero Tolerance to China’s Forced Sterilizations?