Witness at the Public Hearing at the University of UniMail in Geneva
On March 21, Amnesty International and Swiss Falun Gong Association jointly held a public hearing at the University of UniMail in Geneva. Professor Zhang Kunlun, a Canadian Citizen and Ms. Zhang Cuiying, an Australian Citizen were invited to speak about their persecution as Falun Gong practitioners in China to the government officials, professors and others. The University of UniMail Branch of Amnesty International presided over the conference.
I saw a couple of familiar faces at the conference. Among them, there were Chinese "reporters" who had repeatedly made trouble for Falun Gong at the news conferences; there was the "photographer" who, regardless of Falun Gong practitioners' warnings, had willfully taken many pictures during the large scale group practice on the previous day and fled hastily after the policeman came over; there was a so-called "anti pseudo-science celebrity" who had no scientific conscience at all and who defended the criminal actions of the Chinese government which tried to deprive citizens of their freedom of thinking. The Chinese government even sent a lady from Paris who claimed to be a legal expert to assist in the attack. There were also some people in charge of "videotaping" and "recording." It seemed like a new farce was being prepared for CCTV.
I'd like to talk about another issue. The so-called "reporters" sent overseas by the Chinese government always shamelessly spoke of freedom of information, freedom of reportage and freedom of speech, yet their real purpose was to enter the conference hall to make trouble. However, in China, Falun Dafa, which teaches people how to cultivate themselves to be benevolent, has consistently been denied these freedoms and has encountered purely factious slanders. Millions of Falun Dafa practitioners have suffered cruel and inhumane persecution. Has the Chinese government given even a little freedom of information and freedom of speech to Falun Gong practitioners? Have those rumor-making "reporters," who have completely lost their press morality, ever mentioned the denial of freedom of information and freedom of speech to Falun Gong as they shamelessly attacked Dafa? Those people, whose only purpose was to be mouthpieces for the logic of the inhumane oppressors, could not sincerely respect human rights and other people at all. Thus, they do not deserve to be called "reporters" since they lack any social conscience. To tolerate them is to collaborate with "those evil beings who no longer have any human nature or righteous thoughts to do evil without any limit." (From Teacher's article "Rationality.")
When the conference came to the question and answer stage, several people representing the Chinese government started to shout without considering the regular rules. They were restrained by sharp admonishments from the members of Amnesty International and the Falun Gong practitioners.
After practitioners answered all the questions, Professor Zhang, out of good will, discussed his own imprisonment experience to expose the criminal acts of Jiang Zemin's accomplices, who adopted mental and physical torture and deceitful measures to persecute Falun Gong practitioners, totally violating their human rights.
Facing the crude questions raised by Jiang Zemin's accomplices, Professor Zhang said in a kind way at the beginning, "I don't want to blame you at all. All you have seen is the propaganda of the Chinese government. Now I will talk about my own experiences so that you can make your judgement by yourselves."
First, Professor Zhang talked about a story told by a prisoner who was detained with him. In order to give the public an impression that prisoners were treated like family members, when leaders and the media came to the jail for inspection or interview, the wardens would change the prisoners' sanitary utilities and bed sheets to brand new ones, and made the quilts look very neat and organized like army barracks. However, as soon as the inspectors left, all the brand new utilities would be taken back. While the Chinese TV Station interviewed this prisoner, he was made to read a cue card on a board standing behind the video camera which had been prepared in advance. Professor Zhang said, "The measures used by the Chinese government are intended to give a false impression that there is a civilized management in the Chinese jails to those people who don't know the truth. However, all their fabrications have some loose threads. People can see from the video aired on TV that the brand new toothbrushes were still in plastic containers and were clearly not the toothbrushes used by prisoners."
Professor Zhang also recounted a story that happened to him showing how the Chinese government tried to deceive the people of the world. A few days ago CCTV aired a report showing Professor Zhang painting pictures, playing chess and playing cards with the prison wardens and used it to indicate that the Chinese prison wardens treated Professor Zhang as kindly as "one of their family members" thus, they could deny their brutal persecution against Professor Zhang. Not until Professor Zhang watched this report after he regained freedom and returned to Canada did he come to understand what happened at that time. The Chinese government, while planning to deceive people, was compelled to make a decision to release Professor Zhang Kunlun under great pressure from the international community.
One day, the political commissioner of the jail asked Professor Zhang to teach the prison wardens how to paint. Professor Zhang graciously declined and said,"I'm not a painter. I'm a sculpture professor." The political commissioner shamelessly pleaded with him continuously, "We could hardly meet such a famous professor as you. We don't know how long we would have to wait in order to see you again." Professor Zhang, out of good will, painted a picture for them, and the political commissioner seized this opportunity to videotape him. This is the source of the deceitful report on CCTV. The Chinese government using the same plot videotaped the scenes of playing cards and playing chess.
Jiang Zemin and his accomplices not only tortured Falun Gong practitioners physically and used deceitful measures, but also systematically tortured them mentally and brainwashed them. The prison wardens forced Professor Zhang to watch the official TV propaganda for a long time. He had to keep a fixed posture, and in particular, he was not allowed to lower his head or close his eyes because those are the postures of people in a state of thinking. Jiang Zemin and his accomplices did this in order to achieve their goal of brainwashing through instilling the fabricated propaganda into people's minds and prohibiting them from thinking to eliminate their original memory.
Professor Zhang finally talked about the positive influence of Falun Gong practitioners cultivating Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance had on the people around them. At the beginning when Professor Zhang was sent to the ward, the prisoners said to him," The high authority said Falun Gong is our sworn enemy, and asked us not to talk to you." They treated him harshly. As time went on, Professor Zhang touched the prisoners' hearts with his benevolent words and deeds as a Falun Dafa practitioner; they became kind to him. One day, a head of the jail pulled out a prisoner in his ward and brutally beat him up simply because he was "so kind" to Falun Gong practitioners. From then on, the prisoners treated the practitioners ferociously again. However, after a period of time, the practitioners' benevolence once again moved the prisoners, and they became kind to the practitioners once again. The prison wardens had to use other methods to prevent the prisoners from being influenced by Falun Gong practitioners. They said to the prisoners, "As you can see, those Falun Gong practitioners are all talented professors and intellectuals, yet you are criminals; dregs of society. You do not deserve to talk to Falun Gong practitioners." Professor Zhang said to those Chinese officials on the spot, "Falun Gong teaches people to cultivate their heart to be benevolent, become good people and improve people's health. People all over the world have been welcomed Falun Dafa. Such a good cultivation practice was even able to touch the criminals' hearts. They said, 'If we had known Falun Dafa earlier, we would have not become criminals.' Why is it that only the Chinese government desperately persecutes Falun Dafa at any cost?!" Facing the Chinese officials' entanglement on the so-called "letter of repentance," Professor Zhang clearly answered, "Which do you find easier to believe, what I just said as a free man, or what I said when I was held in prison faced with extreme pressure and under the control of brainwashing?"
When the member of Amnesty International who was presiding over the conference declared that it was time to end the public hearing and that people could continue free discussion, several Chinese officials rushed up in front of Professor Zhang. Disregarding even the most minimal politeness between people, they shouted loudly and cursed at Professor Zhang while pointing fingers at him, not giving him any opportunity to speak. Seeing the Chinese officials' criminal act, the Amnesty International official was so irritated that his face became red with anger. He pointed back at a so-called "public figure" and rebuked him loudly, "Do not act like that! You are now in Switzerland where there is democracy and freedom!" People's righteousness compelled the "public figure" to continuously say, "I can lower my voice." Finally, after he found ferocity and slander could not shake Professor Zhang, he suddenly changed his demeanor and said in a pitiful voice, "Professor Zhang, we are fellow townsmen, and you cannot treat me in this manner." Professor Zhang still stood rock-firm. I was standing next to Professor Zhang at that time. Facing this vicious person, I clearly saw this person's frenzied behavior and helpless countenance. A thought suddenly came to mind; another vicious being was shattered because he could never shake the practitioner's firm belief in cultivating Dafa! That short moment could be said to shake the heaven and earth, and people's hearts!
This public hearing lasted one hour, and forcefully achieved the goal of clarifying the truth and suffocating the evil. Meanwhile, it also made the Swiss people personally encounter the ugly features of Jiang Zemin's accomplices.
March 25, 2001