By The Epoch Times Editorial Board, July 20, 2010 -
"Shaken" by Chen Xiaoping, the Gold Award-winning painting in the Second Chinese International Figure Painting Competition. (Provided by NTDTV)
Eleven years ago this week, Jiang Zemin, the former head of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), started an all-out persecution of Falun Gong on July 20, 1999. The years since have been extraordinary for Falun Gong practitioners, the people in China, and free nations around the world.
In the past 11 years, the world has witnessed the pain and suffering Falun Gong practitioners have gone through. The CCP, in addition to spreading outrageous lies, has tortured Falun Gong practitioners with means of torture used only in the darkest eras of humankind, such as the needle club, steel wire, copper whip, bramble whip, genital beating, rape, and the like.
A report by the United Nations special rapporteur on torture listed at least 40 types of torture used by the CCP against Falun Gong practitioners.
According to reports on Clearwisdom, a website run by Falun Gong practitioners, there have been at least 3,300 confirmed deaths of Falun Gong practitioners; over 100,000 have been sentenced to labor camps; thousands more have been sent to mental hospitals where the tortures may include nerve-damaging drugs.
Untold numbers of practitioners have been forced to attend brainwashing classes, and untold numbers have been beaten, made to stand for hours or days on end, and extorted by law- enforcement officials.
Because of the CCP’s information blockade, only a fraction of the abuses suffered in the ongoing persecution are known.
Moral Test Faced By All
The CCP has used its enormous political, economic, and diplomatic resources against Falun Gong, forcing everyone inside and outside of China to choose whether to side with the persecution or to oppose it. The persecution stands opposed to modern civilization, and so its continued existence only highlights the persecutors’ cruelty as well as the moral dilemma that our era faces.
The contest between good and evil always determines the course of civilization. For instance, by the end of World War II, freedom had prevailed over fascism. Civilization has been built on a set of universal moral principles, and when such principles are destroyed, civilization will cease to exist. The sharp decline in morality visible in China today is precisely due to the CCP’s destruction of traditional morality.
When the CCP persecutes a group that believes in truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance, it actually attacks the most fundamental standards of human morality. If the CCP were allowed to have its way, our moral heritage and our civilization would collapse.
The CCP’s attempt to persecute Falun Gong and the efforts to stop this persecution are a battle between good and evil. To keep silent in the face of the persecution is to stand idly by while the foundation of civilization is under attack. That this persecution has been allowed to last 11 years is an enormous shame for our age. The sustained persecution tries our conscience.
Starting 11 years ago, China slipped into a period of extreme darkness: Peasants have had their land expropriated; workers have been forced to retire early; people have seen their homes forcibly confiscated and torn down; underground Christians have endured harsh suppression; dissidents and human rights defenders have been jailed. Ordinary Chinese have experienced indescribable ordeals.
Turning Back the Darkness
On May 9, 2009, 6,000 Taiwanese practitioners in golden and white costumes formed an image of "Zhuan Falun," the book that guides practitioners in their cultivation. (The Epoch Times)
During the unprecedented, dark pressure of the past 11 years, Falun Gong practitioners’ behavior has surprised everyone. From the beginning to the end, they have remained peaceful and calm, a most remarkable characteristic. The practitioners’ peacefulness goes from the inside out, penetrates all around them, and reveals to those who wish to see it a path that might have otherwise been regarded as inconceivable.
Eleven years ago, Falun Gong was practiced in 30 countries. Since then, Falun Gong has been calmly and peacefully spreading and is now practiced in 114 countries. Today, Falun Gong can be found in most areas in Asia, North America, South America, and Europe, and in some African countries. Falun Gong books have been translated into over 40 languages.
Inside China, the unyielding spirit of Falun Gong practitioners has inadvertently reversed the dangerous trend of the moral collapse of the entire society.
In the most difficult of situations, Falun Gong practitioners have forged ahead and in doing so have revived the Chinese people’s upright spirit and morality, which was on the brink of extinction. As a result, the Chinese have found a way out of a fearsome impasse. People are starting to see hope and brightness at the end of the tunnel. In all of history, this is unprecedented.
In the shadow of the Berlin Wall that separated the free West from the communist East, President John F. Kennedy said, “Freedom is indivisible, and when one man is enslaved, all are not free.”
When Jiang Zemin wantonly twisted the law to persecute Falun Gong practitioners, the CCP officials at all levels began employing the same method to suppress other groups. That was the origin of China’s darkness and corruption we are witnessing today.
We are very fortunate to see how Falun Gong practitioners have responded to the persecution. They have manifested amazing will power, resisted the persecution unyieldingly and constantly, and told the truth to people compassionately, peacefully, and rationally.
Everything done by the practitioners has been done not been merely to protect their own rights, but to protect the legal rights of everyone. Evil can never prevail over good. Their spirit has become the great asset as well as the glory of our time because they have lightened the dark land with the light of their own lives.
- The Epochtimes