This article was first published in April 2010.
(Minghui.org) On April 25, 1999, more than ten thousand Falun Gong practitioners went to Beijing to peacefully appeal. Several months later, former Chinese Communist Party (CCP) head Jiang Zemin, using this event as a pretext, launched the persecution of Falun Gong. This brutal persecution is still going on in China.
Falun Gong practitioner Guoping Deng came to Australia over a year ago after working in DuPont's Shanghai Branch. He and his wife participated in the appeal on April 25, 1999. The following is an excerpt of an interview with him.
Reporter: As a participant in the April 25 appeal, can you tell me your feelings at that time?
Mr. Deng: I will never forget that day in my whole life. As time passes by, I feel more clearly the significance of the appeal. But speaking frankly, I did not have any special feeling at the time. I only noticed that there were so many people that day and everyone was kind, peaceful and full of trust in the government. I started practicing Falun Gong in 1996 and had significant changes in my view of the world and my deeds in daily life. I have a kind attitude towards others and don't hate others even if they frame me intentionally.
Reporter: Who organized you to have a group appeal that day?
Mr. Deng: Actually, no one. On that day, thousands of people came from all directions voluntarily. We did not know each other. We stood there for a whole day. Nobody issued a formal written notice telling us what we should or should not do. Around 9 p.m., information came from the front row near the appeals office and the words were passed on one after another: 'some practitioners have already met government officials. Tianjin has released the 45 practitioners. A new round of meetings with government officials will be held after a couple of days. Everyone should go home now.' Thus we believed that some of us had met government officials and trusted that the officials knew we were good people and got our message.
Reporter: Someone said that Falun Gong practitioners were highly disciplined, even better than the army, and those in power of course were afraid of the potential threat. What do you think?
Mr. Deng: When there are so many good people in a country, who are kind towards others and the government, isn't that a great benefit for those in power? Who would be afraid of more good people?
But the CCP started persecuting Falun Gong. The CCP propaganda intentionally twisted the April 25 appeal and implied that if it did not persecute Falun Gong, there would be chaos in the country. Many people believed the propaganda, as they did not know the facts.
Actually, the CCP knows very well that Falun Gong practitioners are good people. Why does it want to persecute good people? The book, Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party explains the reason very clearly. The former CCP head Jiang has strong jealousy and a narrow mind. In addition, the nature of the CCP determines its actions. The CCP depends on lies and violence to maintain its control. Its philosophy is completely opposite to Falun Gong's teaching. That is the fundamental reason why the CCP wants to persecute Falun Gong. It uses the April 25 appeal as a pretext. Without the April 25 appeal, it would have found another pretext to initiate the persecution.
Reporter: Why do you think that many Chinese people believe the CCP's propaganda?
Mr. Deng: In the current China, the CCP intentionally brainwashes the people, which leads to distorted thinking. There is no trust between people and no one easily trusts others. Many people believe that humans are selfish, and so they don't believe that Falun Gong practitioners are that good. The CCP takes advantage of this psychology and deceives many people to believe its propaganda. Thus people fall into the CCP's propaganda trap.
It has been nearly 11 years since the CCP initiated the persecution on July 20, 1999. Hundreds of thousands of Falun Gong practitioners have been brutally persecuted. I was sent to a forced labor camp for two years. What we do is just tell people that Falun Gong is good and we are innocent. We believe in Truth-Compassion-Forbearance. During the past 11 years, the documented death cases of practitioners due to police brutality totals more than 3300. Countless practitioners have been forced to stay away from home, were fired, or separated from their families. Many elderly people died due to police intimidation. In China, if you practice Falun Gong, various unexpected misfortunes can come to you under the CCP's persecution policy.
Currently, Falun Gong practitioners are still persecuted brutally by the CCP. But evil never prevails over justice in history. The April 25 appeal will be recorded in history and become a moral milestone for mankind through the ages.