The Difficulty of Belief, the Power of Belief -- Interview with Ms. Wang Lianrong, Who Has Lost Three Children in the Persecution (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net) 64-year Ms. Wang Lianrong lost her three children, who were all in their 30s, within three years.
Ms. Wang Lianrong lives in Canfangying, Beixinbao Town, Huailai County, Zhangjiakou City, Hebei Province. Her husband, Mr. Chen Yunchuan, is 66 years old. The couple had two sons and two daughters. The two sons were twins. The whole family had practiced Falun Gong.
Since July 20, 1999, the persecution of Falun Gong brought about in succession the deaths of three of her four children. Their son Chen Aizhong died as a result of persecution on September 20, 2001 at age 33. Their second son was Chen Aili. His body was delivered home by two strangers on the evening of November 5, 2004. He was only 36 years old. The youngest daughter, Ms. Chen Hongping, died as a result of persecution at the age of 32 on March 5, 2003. The elder daughter, Ms. Chen Shulan, now 39 years old now, was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison. She is serving her illegal incarceration in the Tiantanghe Women's Prison in Beijing.
Before this Chinese lunar New Year's Day (February 9, 2005), after many difficulties, we finally met with Ms. Wang Lianrong. When we saw her for the first time she was weak and had difficulty breathing. She was at death's door, for she had been locked up in a brainwashing center. She had undergone a hunger strike there for over two months in protest. During that period she was brutally force-fed and had sustained severe lung injuries. She kept coughing and talked intermittently, without strength, which made this interview difficult. Still, the meeting profoundly affected us. Her eyes were filled with kindness but often empty as she told people of her overwhelming sadness for losing three children.
When we met with her again after the New Year's Day, she was almost recovered. Ms. Wang told us her whole family story.
Reporter: You recovered so soon; what's the miraculous cure?
Ms. Wang: There is no miraculous cure. It is Falun Gong that is powerful to heal illnesses and maintain fitness, which is demonstrated by the more than 100 million people in the world who practice it. If only we had good opportunities for practicing, everything would turn good.
Reporter: When we saw you before the New Year's Day, your health and mental state were really bad.
Ms. Wang: Alas. At that time I was just set free from the Shalingzi Brainwashing Center in Zhangjiakou City, Hebei province. In order to protest the brainwashing and illegal detention, I had undergone a hunger strike for over two months, which made me look like I was dying. They thought that I couldn't live much longer and didn't want to be responsible for that, so they set me free. At that time I already couldn't take care of myself, so they also released my husband. My husband was also extremely weak at the time because of the persecution.
Picture 1: Shalingzi Brainwashing Center in Zhangjiakou City
This center is located in Yangtai village and was rebuilt from the 5.7 Official School that was used to persecute veteran officials during the Cultural Revolution.
Reporter: Do you still remember the details of what happened?
Ms. Wang: It was about 4:00 p.m. on February 28, 2004. My husband had gone to work at the orchard and hadn't come back yet. Only my son and I were at home. The government had bought off a person named Li Fengxiang who ran a small shop about 20 meters (about 64 feet) away from our house. He specifically tailed us and then reported to the government people. He came to our home asking for hot water. I told him that we had none. He then left.
Reporter: How did you know that Li Fengxiang was tailing you?
Ms. Wang: He was used many times to report our actions. Before that I saw a few people in his small shop. One of them was our village Party Secretary named Ren Shujun. He was about thirty years old and kept participating in the persecution of Dafa practitioners.
Reporter: What happened later?
Ms. Wang: My son said, "Let me go outside to have a look." He never came back. About a little over ten minutes later several strangers burst into my house. They grabbed me by my arms and stuffed me into a vehicle waiting outside without saying anything. I knew one of them. He was from the town police station, named Bi. I asked them where they wanted to take me. They said, "You will know when you arrive there."
After arriving at the Beixinbao Town Government they took me into a room. I saw that my son was sitting on a bench, handcuffed behind his back and tightly bound to the bench, with a rope from his belly to his calves. His head was covered with a yellow plastic bag, which was sealed with wide adhesive tape around the back of his head and mouth. My husband was bound to another bench in the same way, his mouth gagged with a towel and head covered with a knit cap, looking like a masked person. His mouth was also tightly sealed with sticky tape.
Picture 2: Beixinbao Township Government in Huailai County, Hebei Province.
Picture 3: Mr. Chen Aili was gagged tightly this way for over four hours (re-enactment)
Picture 4: Mr. Chen Yunchuan was gagged tightly this way for over four hours (re-enactment).
Reporter: When did they arrest your husband?
Ms. Wang: I heard it from my husband later. At 4:00 P.M. that day, when he was trimming the fruit trees in our orchard, more than ten people came and took him away to the township government office.
They didn't give me any time to react and immediately covered my head with a knit wool hat. Then they taped my mouth and nose in a way which made it very hard to breathe. I felt so uncomfortable and was completely unable to speak. They handcuffed me and tied me onto a bench, making the rope extremely tight. It is indescribable how uncomfortable I felt - unable to breathe and unable to speak. I even had a thought that I wanted to die right then and there. I still have the hat. It is evidence of their persecution.
I was tied up for about two hours. The day became dark. They untied three of us but our mouths were still taped and we were still handcuffed. I was then neither able to stand up, nor walk. Two police officers held me and when we went up to the police car, they pulled my arms upward forcefully and threw me into the police car, which hurt me very bad. Many days later I was still unable to move my right arm. In the police car they handcuffed the three of us with our backs against the legs of the seat, making us unable to sit or lie down. It took two hours to arrive at Shalingzi.
I was worried about Chen Aili and was afraid that he might have suffocated to death. I was almost suffocated to death from the woolen hat that covered my head and the adhesive tape around my mouth. I can imagine how he must have felt with the plastic bag over his head and the tight adhesive tape around his mouth. Nevertheless, it was really miraculous! After four hours like that he was still alive. The first word coming out of his mouth after the plastic bag was removed was, "Falun Dafa is good." And his voice was loud and clear.
Picture 5: Wang Lianrong was subjected to suffocation like this for over four hours (Re-enactment photo)
Reporter: Why did they treat you like this?
Ms. Wang: These people stop at nothing and are more evil than gangsters. Simply because we practice Falun Gong, they took us to a brainwashing class, without showing any legal document or following any legal procedure and wanted to detain us long term. They were afraid we would expose their shameful crimes and made what my whole family suffered in the persecution public.
Reporter: Where was the brainwashing class located? How many people were detained?
Ms. Wang: It was in Shalingzhi County, Zhangjiakou City. The brainwashing class was located in a remote area. There was only one village nearby, called Yangtai. It was an isolated courtyard that was used to persecute senior officials during the Cultural Revolution. There were three rows of one-story apartments inside the court, surrounded by high walls capped by barbed wire. The huge metal gate was locked tight, regardless of day or night. Without permission from the Zhangjiakou 610 Office, no one was allowed in or out. More than ten practitioners were detained there. One would be released if one were "reformed"; otherwise one would be detained there without a specified term. I have never again seen my youngest son since I was detained there.
Reporter: When did your son pass away?
Picture 6: Chen Aili
Ms. Wang: When we were abducted and taken to the brainwashing class we started a hunger strike, refusing to eat or drink, to protest their savagery. On April 27 last year (2004), when my son's life was in danger, they released him and also allowed my husband to go back to take care of him. Later my husband told me what happened. After they returned home, Wang Chunquan from the township's general government office put them under house arrest and did not allow them to go out. They bribed neighbors Zheng Ruxi and Li Zhonglin to monitor them. My son felt he couldn't stay at home to rest and be possibly abducted again. On July 10, he jumped over the wall and left home. When my son left home he was still very weak. Later, the township officials abducted my husband again and sent him back to the brainwashing class.
Three months later, the evening of November 5, two strangers brought back my son's body in a car. At that time I was stunned. I couldn't accept such a cruel reality.
Reporter: When did you come back home from the brainwashing center?
Ms. Wang: After I was detained in the brainwashing center for over half a year I had symptoms of fever, cough and dizziness. I was sent to the Zhangjiakou City Infectious Diseases Hospital. I stayed there for over one month. My situation deteriorated and I became comatose. On October 19 they had to release me after they thought I was going to die. My husband was released as well for taking care of me since there was no one at home. In fact, my husband was persecuted very badly as well.
Reporter: Where did the two people come from who sent Chen Aili back home? What did they say to you?
Ms. Wang: My brain became numb and I can't remember clearly what they said. I only remember that they told me my son died after 5:00 P.M., on November 5. They left a little money and left hurriedly. To this day I still do not know how I can overcome such a tragedy. This is my third child that died from the persecution.
Reporter: When was your oldest son (Chen Aizhong) killed under the persecution? When did you see him for the last time?
Ms. Wang: I saw my other son for the last time on January 1, 2001. My whole family went to Beijing to appeal for Falun Gong and to say a just word. After all of us were arrested at Tiananmen Square I never saw my son again. Oh, he suffered so much! He had been detained in many places in Beijing and in Hebei province and suffered brutal tortures. They used all kinds of mean methods in order to make him give up his belief; however, my son didn't give up his belief. He was detained for the last time in the No.1 Forced Labor Camp, Hehuakeng, Tangshan City, Hebei Province. On the 8th day there he was tortured to death.
On September 20, 2001, my son Chen Aizhong left forever. He suffered so much torture. He was only 33 years old when he died.
Picture 7: Chen Aizhong
Reporter: What was it like for your family after the abduction?
Ms. Wang: I've been abducted so many times that I can't remember exactly how many. At that time, they took me to the Huairou Detention Center in Beijing. They pulled off all my clothes with the flimsy excuse of searching me. I was naked. I am so old, but still I encountered this kind of insult, and more than once. They also took my daughter Chen Hongping with me, and told both of us to take off our clothes. My younger daughter refused, and then they ordered two male prisoners to forcibly remove her clothes in front of me, and she too was stripped naked. Then a policewoman tortured my daughter with an electric baton. Afterwards, they threw our clothes out the door. There were many people outside, both men and women, we were naked and we had to put on our clothes in front of them.
Seeing them behave worse than animals, I thought, "It's the end for the CCP. Our whole family only wants to have our belief and be good people according to "Truthfulness- Compassion-Forbearance," but the CCP won't let us be good people."
On September 17, 2002, my elder daughter Chen Shulan and I were again abducted and detained at the Huailai Detention Center in Hebei Province.
Picture 8: Huairou Detention Center in Beijing
Reporter: You were abducted again? How many details can you remember?
Ms. Wang: I was at my elder daughter Chen Shulan's home in Changping, Beijing. After two o'clock, a group of people suddenly rushed into the house, they didn't show any identification or warrants, but ransacked the home like thieves, then they cuffed Shulan and I, and took us away by force. There were six to seven of them, and I didn't know any of them. Later I found out that they were from the National Security Team of the Changping Police Department in Beijing. Afterwards my daughter was sentenced to seven and a half years and detained at the Tiantanghe Women's Prison in Beijing.
Picture 9: Chen Shulan
Reporter: What about you?
Ms. Wang: They detained me at the Huailai Detention Center in Hebei Province. I protested by refusing to eat and drink. They saw my situation was becoming critical, so they released me on the tenth day of my detention. After I got home, I couldn't believe my eyes. The house was a disaster, there were holes in the ceiling; there was no glass in the windows; the electricity was off; many of the pillows had been cut open, and the buckwheat hull pillow stuffing was strewn about; the grain was scattered all over the floor; all the contents of the cupboards were missing, even the cooking-pots and bowls; they also poured salty vegetable soup, rice, flour, soybeans, salty flour, shampoo, washing powder, and glue for repairing tires on the floor and in the bedding; our life savings that we had hidden in an empty tank and the over 6,000 yuan that we put in a cabinet were all stolen. I had no money on me, and the grain was on the floor. I had nothing to eat for more than ten days after I returned home on top of the ten days I spent on the hunger strike at the detention center, so I had nothing to eat for more than twenty days.
Picture 10: Huailai County Detention Center in Hebei Province
Reporter: How was your health at that time?
Ms. Wang: Oh, my body was very good, but the spiritual pressure was overpowering, and I had a dark feeling. I picked up the rice from the floor. I had no choice but to eat the rice. There were more than 50 kilos of rice and 75 kilos of flour, but someone had intentionally thrown them on the floor, and they were mixed with so many messy things, including mouse excrement and buckwheat hulls, and they had been walked on by many people. They weren't in an edible condition, but I had no choice! I quickly sifted through them and washed them with water. The rice couldn't be cleaned no matter how many times I washed it, but I had to put up with it. Moreover, because we hadn't been home for a long time, the tap was rusted, and the water was red. I let the water run for a long time, but couldn't get rid of the red color. Also the quilts were too dirty to be used.
It was nearly winter, and cold. I thought about my broken family every day, my life was full of misery! My husband was detained at Shijiazhuang No. 4 Prison; I had four children, one of whom had been persecuted to death, with the three who remained in jail at that time, which left only me, an elderly lady, all alone. I lived in an ice-cold room, in darkness with wind blowing through the broken windows every night. Oh! Although the town government still sent people (six of them including Wang Chunquan and Wang Weidong) to supervise me 24 hours a day. Furthermore, they used wire to lock the gate, and wouldn't let me out. Sometimes they would open the door to see if I was there during the night. That period of time was truly difficult! I don't even know how I endured it.
Reporter: Did you report this to the police?
Ms. Wang: No. We Falun Gong practitioners have no human rights at all, and the town officials are very wicked. I feared they would abduct me and persecute me again. Once, Wang Weidong from the Township Administrative Office demanded money from me in the courtyard of township. I told him that I had no money, and he said, "You don't even have money for the bridge toll? No pocket money?" Then he spitefully slapped me twice in the face.
Liu Yufeng, the head of the police station is even more vicious. When my elder daughter and I were abducted and taken to the Chaofengan Brainwashing Center in Beijing, because we refused to give our names, one person pulled my hair and dragged me back and forth. Later, some officers from the town police station showed up. As soon as Liu Yufeng entered the room, he made a fist and brutally punched me twice in the head; instantly blackness swam before my eyes. Then they carried me to a car. He cuffed my hands behind my back so tightly that I was in a lot of pain. He also ordered two people to sit on my lap, with one person on each side. They cursed me wickedly using language I can't repeat. I asked them, "You're younger than I am, how dare you speak to me like this?"
They answered, "We'll open the door and throw you on the road and let the cars run over you!"
These are people who have lost all traces of human nature, and this is a man who has persecuted every member of my family. You tell me, where can I report what happened?
Picture 11: The Beixinbao Township Police Station
Reporter: When was the last time you saw your younger daughter (Chen Hongping)?
Ms. Wang: Oh. I saw her die. It was a terrible death. She was illegally sentenced to three years of forced labor in 2001, and detained at the Gaoyang Women's Forced Labor Camp in Hebei. She was subjected to so much torture that in the end she didn't even look human anymore.
It was after sundown, about 6 P.M. on January 31, 2003. A staff member from the Beixinbao township government with the surname of Yang knocked on my door and told me that my daughter Chen Hongping was back. My husband and I went outside, and at the roadside we saw a white van and two people holding Chen Hongping up. She saw me, but her eyes were dull, she made no reaction to my presence as if she didn't recognize me, and she was very emaciated. I felt sad, but I didn't dare cry in front of my daughter for fear she would suffer even more. I knew that my daughter had undoubtedly been severely persecuted by them, otherwise they wouldn't have brought her back, because she was sentenced to three years, and it had only been a year and a half. My younger daughter had never acted like that before; she'd always been very lively. Every time she'd come home she would cheerfully call me mom the moment she stepped in the door, but this time she didn't say a word when she saw me, as if she didn't know me.
Reporter: Did she say anything to you afterwards? Who persecuted her to such a degree?
Ms. Wang: She didn't say anything after she came home. At that time, her father and one of her brother's were both home. We asked her what happened, but she said nothing. She'd become extremely timid, she was frightened at the slightest sound, and sometimes she stared at my face strangely, and looked at me for a long time. Day or night she was afraid to be left alone, so somebody always had to stay with her. When she slept at night, she wanted me to hold her like a child, and she was afraid to sleep alone. When her brother saw her like that he burst into tears. We suspected that the police had drugged her, so we asked her, "Did they give you any drugs?"
She replied, "Yes, they gave me big yellow pills and injections."
Later my daughter haltingly told me that she didn't compromise with the persecutors at the Gaoyang Forced Labor Camp. I was convinced that they had definitely used inhumane and mysterious methods to persecute my daughter. She was so skinny she only weighted a little more than 50 pounds, and her legs and feet were swollen.
Once my younger daughter told me, "Mom, they destroyed me. After I was detained at Gaoyang Forced Labor Camp, I only had one period in two months, and then I didn't have another one for more than a year. My mind doesn't work right, I can't remember things, and can't think."
Picture 12: Donghuayuan Police Station in Huailai County
My younger daughter was tortured so badly that when she came home my whole family was suffering miserably. The day she came home was the last day of the year on the Chinese lunar calendar, and the next day was the traditional celebration of the Chinese New Year, but we had nothing at home. The windows were all broken, so we had to board them up to keep the wind out. It was only about 20 degrees Fahrenheit in the room, the water in the water tank was frozen and we had no electricity. My daughter was afraid of the dark so we lit candles. She had a high fever and a bad cough, she had difficulty breathing and she was dizzy, as her mother I could see she was suffering horribly.
Reporter: Didn't you take her to the hospital?
Ms. Wang: We had no money. [Note: In China, if people cannot pay the hospital in advance, they are denied treatment.] When she came home, it was during the Chinese New Year, and we didn't even have enough money to buy the food she needed to recover her strength. She continued to suffer after her release, and she didn't get good food. Moreover, she was wearing thin clothes when she got back, I wanted to buy some new clothes for her, but I had no money.
Picture 13: Chen Hongping before she died
Reporter: When did she pass away?
Ms. Wang: Early on the morning of March 5, 2003, my 32-year-old daughter, who was my most beloved, forever closed her eyes while being held in the arms of her brother. I suffered the indescribable feeling of watching my child dying in pain, without being able to do anything to help her.
Reporter: How can you bear the loss of three children?
Ms. Wang: I can only say that it's due to the power of faith, the power of "Truthfulness- Compassion-Forbearance" that I've been able to endure the loss of three children. Without it I would have gone mad, I wouldn't be alive today.
Reporter: I sincerely express my condolences, and I salute you and your family on behalf of good and kind-hearted people worldwide. Please take care.
Ms. Wang: Thank you.
Picture 14: Wang Lianrong, who has lost three children.
The moral cornerstone of humanity is faced with an unprecedented challenge.
In China, people are suffering greatly for their dedication to living their lives in accordance with "Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance." For six years, Falun Gong practitioners have upheld these principles while being subjected to extremely painful and cruel persecution, and have established forever the ultimate milestone in human history.
We call for justice, we call for conscience.