New York Assemblyman Makes Public an Offensive Letter from the Chinese Consulate General (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net) On December 18, 2007, just before NTDTV's Holiday Wonders opening performance, New York Assemblyman Michael Benjamin received a letter from the Chinese Consulate General in New York. He made this letter public.
The slanderous letter relied on the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)'s usual tactics to defame Falun Gong. It pressured the assemblyman with "Chinese and American relations" to force him not to support Holiday Wonders or the Chinese New Year Spectacular shows in any way.
New York Assemblyman Michael Benjamin
The Chinese Consulate General in New York wrote to the New York Assemblyman on December 18, pressuring him with "Chinese and American relations" to force him not to support Holiday Wonders or the Chinese New Year Spectacular shows in any way.
The Chinese Consulate is pressuring a New York Assemblyman not to attend a show on Broadway that they feel is "humiliating" for the Chinese Communist regime back in the Mainland. The assemblyman, Michael Benjamin of the Bronx, has said he's not buying into the Communist agenda and plans on attending the show in question, Holiday Wonders, now playing at the Beacon Theatre in Manhattan.
"I believe that the Chinese Consulate is again seeking to discourage participation by elected officials in the Holiday Wonders show," said Assemblyman Benjamin in an e-mail statement to The Epoch Times earlier.
"The CCP insists to the world that there is only one China. They seek to drown out alternative voices. They fear that the world will learn the truth of their 'Animal Farm' regime," he added.
Benjamin received an unusual letter last week from the Chinese Consulate General in New York. The letter, sent via fax and received one week before the theatrical production, Holiday Wonders, opened, is addressed to Assemblyman Michael Benjamin.
The letter focuses on Holiday Wonders and its producer, New Tang Dynasty Television (NTDTV), telling Assemblyman Benjamin "not to support in any way the Holiday Wonders and the Chinese New Year Spectacular." Both shows are produced by NTDTV, an independent Chinese language television station that has faced repeated attacks by the CCP.
Assemblyman Benjamin has been honored by community members in the past for recognition of his work to promote diversity and freedom of belief.
Holiday Wonders is a colorful presentation of traditional, ancient Chinese culture with modern twists in some of the acts. At least one performance depicts the persecution of the spiritual practice Falun Gong, which the CCP has been brutally persecuting since 1999.
Westchester resident and Falun Gong practitioner Jeanne Mitchell has stayed in contact with Assemblyman Benjamin's office since 2005 to inform him about the ongoing persecution. She was contacted by a staff member of the office who alerted her of the letter received.
"They begin the letter by offering holiday greetings and promoting an economic business relationship," said Mitchell. "But what they really want is to defame Falun Gong. They talk about trade to keep people from really speaking out about what terrible human rights violations going on in China," she added.
Ms. Benjamin: "I wanted to see this show because of the letter."
Assemblyman Benjamin's wife, Ms. Kennedy Benjamin, said that originally she only planned to go to the reception, but she decided to make time to watch the show because of the slanderous letter.
Assemblyman Benjamin saw NTDTV's show two years ago. He called it "wonderful" and an embodiment of "traditional Chinese culture and values."
NTDTV: "The CCP's Defamation can only help promotion."NTDTV spokesperson Carrie Hong said that the CCP's letter is full of slander and defamatory remarks because NTDTV promotes culture and art that negate the Party's own culture. The CCP is fearful of NTDTV's mission.
Ms. Hong said that based on previous experience, each time the CCP has attempted to interfere with an NTDTV event, the event was actually promoted instead, including the annual New Year's show and the International Chinese Classical Dance Competition. Many people attended after they heard about the events from the CCP's efforts to defame them.
She pointed out that before NTDTV's Chinese New Year Spectacular show in Canberra, Australia last year, the Chinese Embassy wrote to members of Parliament and asked them not to see the show. Not surprisingly, all the members of Parliament went to see the show. One of them said humorously, "We can hold a session before the show."
Ms. Hong predicted a similar effect on the shows in North America.