Courage in the Face of Persecution: Remembering Mr. Tang Jian, Who Was Tortured to Death at the Shuangkou Forced Labor Camp, Tianjin City
(Clearwisdom.net) The Fifth Brigade at the Shuangkou Forced Labor Camp is known as the "Demon's Brigade." In the summer of 2001, daytime temperatures often reached as high as 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit). The prison guards forced several practitioners to stand in the sun for a long time, and when the practitioners became thirsty, the guards put water in front of them to further torture them. They used other cruel methods to torture practitioners. Some practitioners gave up under the great pressure and signed the so-called "Guarantee Statement." Since the Fifth Brigade was the most vicious brigade in the labor camp, practitioners who did not yield in the other brigades were transferred there to suffer more severe tortures. Practitioner Tang Jian, who was in the First Brigade, together with practitioners Li Liang and Liu Zhonglin from the Second Brigade, and practitioner Wang Shiyuan from the Third Brigade, were all transferred to the Fifth Brigade.
The guards coerced several criminal detainees to beat newcomers to the Fifth Brigade on the first night of their arrival. When there was no work to do, detainees were forced to sit in their rooms until midnight before they were allowed to sleep, and were forced to get up at 4:30 a.m. If there was work to do, they might be allowed no sleep at all for several days and nights. Lead by instructor Yang Zhiqiu, the guards promised to reduce criminal detainees' term by 15 days for each practitioner they "Reformed" through torture. With this motivation, criminal detainees became extremely cruel in torturing practitioners. One practitioner was deprived of sleep for 13 days because he refused to write a Guarantee Statement, and was tortured with electric batons, beaten with wooden clubs, given no water to drink but was force-fed with wine, and the center of his palm was severely burned with cigarettes. Two practitioners were tortured until they lost consciousness, yet they still refused to write the Guarantee Statement.
During the summer of 2001, steadfast practitioners were moved into one room. We practitioners were not allowed to talk with each other, nor allowed contact with outsiders, and we were not even allowed to use the bathroom. At night, each of us was given a piece of cloth the size of a coin to clean the corridor and the bathroom. Our eating bowls were used as water containers. The cleaning would go on all night long. Prison guard Du Yingxin held an electric baton in his hand while monitoring our progress, and several criminal detainees were brought in to loudly read defamatory statements against Teacher Li and Falun Dafa. If we did not follow their orders completely, we'd be beaten. At 5:05 a.m., Du Yingxin told us to go to sleep; we were awakened at 5:25 a.m.
My first impression of Dafa practitioner Tang Jian: his height was between 5 feet 6 inches and 5 ft. 9 in.; he looked very thin and had a strong voice. A few days after Tang Jian arrived, Du Yingxin attempted to force him to write a "Report of Thoughts." Mr. Tang refused, and was beaten, forced to stand for the whole night, and then made to go to work the following day.
The camp broadcast news programs in the evening and played audiotapes during the day, the content of which was all focused on defaming Falun Dafa. In protest, Tang Jian and several other practitioners refused to work. Whenever possible, they would leave their rooms to shut off the tape player, and every time they did so they were beaten. Tang Jian always shouted out the Fa-rectification verses for sending forth righteous thoughts. The frightened guards then ordered some of the criminal inmates to wrap Tang Jian's arms and mouth with tape. To protest this brutality, Mr. Tang and several other practitioners went on a hunger strike. Late one night, shouting was heard in the corridor. We awoke to find police officers and their inmate assistants walking the halls, and heard the noise of electric batons being used to shock someone, and cursing from the criminal detainees. After a while we learned that Tang Jian was being tortured because he did the Falun Gong exercises. The following day, we found that due to the beating they gave him, Tang Jian's face was bruised and swollen, his eyes were nearly closed, and his clothes were very dirty.
Because of the growing number of practitioners who were refusing to work, the labor camp guards, led by instructor Yang Zhiqiu and Deputy Brigade Leader Lang Tao, intended to punish them. One day, they assembled the practitioners who refused to work in a room and said, "This place's function is to 'reform' people. As long as you are here, you must accept reform, otherwise, you'll be punished."
Tang Jian replied from the rear row, "We are law-abiding citizens, we need no reform."
Seeing as how it was Tang Jian speaking, Yang Zhiqiu shouted, "Take him!"
Several police officers dragged Mr. Tang away. Because Tang had been on a hunger strike for two months and had been subjected to force-feeding, he was very weak. When we heard the sound of him being repeatedly shocked with many electric batons, it pained our hearts. We all refused to go to work.
As so many of the practitioners would rather die than give up Falun Dafa, the guards routinely extended their prison terms. Officers used slanderous words while writing notices about the extension of practitioners' prison terms on a blackboard. Tang Jian always erased these defamatory words. Police officer Du Yingxin cursed Tang Jian and beat him most cruelly every time that happened.
Ever since Tang Jian came to the Fifth Brigade, dark burn marks caused by the application of electric batons were ever present on his body, as well as other injuries he sustained while being tortured. Once there was a big meeting. Since part of the purpose of the meeting was to defame Falun Dafa, Tang Jian refused to attend. The guards ordered two criminal detainees to force Mr. Tang into the meeting place by dragging him by his feet across the ground. Zhang, the head of the Tianjin City Forced Labor Camp Bureau, made defamatory statements about Falun Dafa in the meeting. Tang Jian tried to stand up and ask questions, but he was forcefully restrained by criminal detainees. Many practitioners stood up to challenge Zhang. As Zhang had no way to respond, the meeting was quickly concluded. No more meetings of this type were ever held again.
The scheme to force practitioners to give up under torture in the Fifth Brigade failed. Those practitioners were reassigned to various other brigades. Tang Jian's bravery, strength, and ability to withstand intense suffering shocked and amazed everyone around him. The practitioners all privately praised Tang Jian. As we were all transferred, I was separated from Tang Jian. A few days ago, I heard the news that he had been tortured to death. I am saddened by his death. I wrote the above from memory, in the hope that it will help us to remember him together.