Open Letter from DC Falun Dafa Association Regarding Chinese Embassy Officials' Interference with the Chinese New Year Spectacular
Embassy of the People's Republic of China in the United States of America, Ambassador Zhou Wenzhong & officials of the Chinese Embassy and Consulates in the United States:
Chinese New Year, the most important traditional holiday for Chinese around the globe, is approaching. As members of the Chinese community, we hope that our 5,000 year old civilization will be welcomed by the international community, and that traditional Chinese culture and heritage will be passed on to future generations.
The 2008 Holiday Wonders and Chinese New Year Spectacular, hosted by the Falun Dafa Association and New Tang Dynasty Television, is an annual American production of Chinese dance and music that tours more than 60 cities across four continents. This annual Chinese cultural extravaganza features the Divine Performing Arts Dance Company.
One audience member from mainland China remarked, "with such an impact on mainstream society in the United States, Divine Performing Arts should come to mainland China and bring traditional culture and values back to Shenzhou (the Divine Land, China). This show can help uplift the moral standard and spirituality of society."
An American-Chinese attendee remarked, "Divine Performing Arts represents the highest artistry of global Chinese...The principles and values expressed in the show are unforgettable."
Western audience members have said, "The message of truth and kindness portrayed in the show is valued in both the East and the West."
However, this production is not permitted in the birthplace of Chinese culture. And it is beyond understanding that Chinese diplomats stationed in the Unites States, with an important mission to spread Chinese culture, are playing the opposite role. Chinese embassy and consulate officials have spread defamatory and slanderous letters in the American and Chinese communities to interfere with this show.
Incidents listed below:
--On January 8, 2004, Zhou Xiaomei, an official with the Chinese Consulate General in Los Angeles sent a letter to a professor in New Mexico to defame NTDTV and the Chinese New Year Global Gala;
--On December 12, 2006, Zhou Xiaomei, the same official from the Chinese Consulate General in Los Angeles, sent letters to local government officials in an effort to discourage them from participating in the Chinese New Year Global Gala;
--In December of 2007, Baltimore's Lyric Opera House, the venue for the 2007 Holiday Wonders Baltimore show, received a phone call from the Chinese embassy harassing them to cancel the show;
--Before the Holiday Wonders show in Charlotte, North Carolina on December 19, the Chinese Embassy called the Owens Auditorium and claimed the show was related to Falun Gong in an attempt to get the show canceled.
--New York State Assemblyman Michael Benjamin of the Bronx received a letter from the Chinese Consulate General in New York City one week before the Holiday Wonders show opened. The letter told Benjamin "not to support in any way Holiday Wonders and the Chinese New Year Spectacular."
--The Chinese Consulate General in Houston, Texas wrote to Mayor Jim Naugle of Fort Lauderdale, reminding him not to attend the show or send a holiday greeting, or he risked damaging his reputation.
--A few elected officials in California, including Congresswoman Susan Davis, Orange County chairman of Orange County's Board of Supervisors, Chris Norby, and San Diego councilwoman Donna Frye, received similar letters, warning them not to support the shows in any form.
--A few local officials in the mid-West invited to attend the Spectacular also received faxed letters from the Chinese Consulate General in Chicago. The letter, entitled "Talking Points," has neither signature nor date. The contents include anti-Falun Gong propaganda, and advises against participating in the Chinese New Year Spectacular shows in Chicago, Detroit, or Minneapolis from January 23 to January 26, 2008.
--Chinese embassy and consulates have also sent private notices to Chinese-American communities, discouraging them from "supporting the performance of Divine Performing Arts in any format," or "attend the Chinese New Year Spectacular."
--The board of a Chinese language schools in New Jersey was notified by the Chinese Consulate General in New York in 2007 "not allow NTDTV to sell tickets in the school."
--From 11 pm of January 21, 2008, NTDTV's San Francisco office started to receive repeated phone calls that played a recorded message slandering the performance.
-- The Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CSSA) of Tokyo University sent an email to their internal email list. The email slandered the Chinese New Year Spectacular as "having ulterior motives" and asked the Chinese students "not to participate or promote" the show.
-- On January 3 and 15, 2008, Kyung Hee University and KBS Business in Korea unilaterally canceled their contracts with NTDTV respectively, under pressure from Chinese embassy in Korea.
Holiday Wonders and the Chinese New Year Spectacular presented by Divine Performing Arts should be a point of pride for Chinese around the globe. The performances are working to give new life to a fading Chinese culture. The Chinese consular official's work to defame and interfere with the show only brings shame to the Chinese people. By attempting to block this effort to bring about a rebirth of ancient Chinese culture, the Chinese regime is pursuing an anti-China agenda. The regime's disregard for basic human freedoms threatens not only every Chinese, but the entire world.
We have reported the activities of these Chinese diplomats such as Qiao Hong and Zhou Xiaomei to the United States Congress, the Department of State, the Department of Justice, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. If the harassment and interference continues in the future, we reserve the right to launch a media campaign to inform the American public and have these unscrupulous diplomats expelled from the United States.
While solemnly protesting the interference by consular officials from the People's Republic of China, we call on all Chinese embassy and consular officials to live dignified lives guided by their conscience, courage and the laws of the United States of America.
Washington DC Falun Dafa Practitioners Association
January 29, 2008