(Minghui.org) In the 11th ward at Shandong Province Women’s Prison, which was specifically set up to persecute Falun Gong practitioners, the guards use a combination of physical torture and mental exploitation in attempts to force the practitioners to renounce their faith.
This article focuses on the various steps the guards take to try to brainwash the practitioners.
The 11th ward is housed in an independent three-story building with a small courtyard and is separated from the other prison buildings. The entrance seems clean and friendly, but the screams coming from the west side of the building immediately remind one that this is hell in disguise.
When a practitioner first enters the ward, the guards set up a brainwashing team to monitor her. The practitioner has to ask for permission to do anything, including eat, drink, sit, or use the restroom. If she refuses to comply, she is first starved and then force-fed. The guards also threaten to force-feed them nerve-damaging drugs.
All members of the brainwashing team are former practitioners who have given up the practice under pressure and who now assist the guards in brainwashing newcomers. Based on their knowledge of the practitioner’s personality, they come up with a personalized strategy to shake her faith, including using persuasive talks and playing propaganda videos.
If the practitioner doesn’t succumb to the brainwashing, the guards send in inmates to beat her. One practitioner said the inmates slapped her in the face, held her arms behind her back, and pulled them up. They then pushed her down, pressed her face against the floor, and held her hand to sign the prepared statement to denounce Falun Gong.
Once the practitioner compromises with the initial intimidation and signs the statement to renounce Falun Gong, the next round of brainwashing starts.
In addition to writing daily thought reports to vilify Falun Gong, the practitioners are also forced to watch videos demonizing Falun Gong every day. The guards often use term reductions as incentives to promote more participation. Meanwhile, by “sharing their experiences,” the brainwashing assistants lead the practitioners to blame Falun Gong for the persecution they are suffering and turn them against the practice.
Most of the brainwashing assistants help the practitioners write the statements to condemn Falun Gong. The practitioners were then required to read their statements out loud in front of other practitioners as part of the brainwashing process. Most of these practitioners burst into tears as they read their statements, full of regret for practicing Falun Gong and blaming it for their imprisonment and separation from their families. Such emotions are very powerful in influencing those who miss their families or who are on the verge of a breakdown from the isolation and torture.
After the guards deem the brainwashing and conversion successful, they transfer the practitioner to a regular cell in the same ward and arrange for another inmate to monitor her. The practitioner is still required to write daily thought reports. The guards also continue to have them attend brainwashing lectures and watch videos to solidify the results. At this stage, the brainwashing videos and lectures are more detailed and carefully crafted, including some being presented as entertainment programs.
On the wall, the guards put up articles about traditional values to confuse the practitioners. They also arrange dancing and singing activities to praise how “righteous” and “just” the guards are.
Those who refuse to renounce Falun Gong are held in solitary confinement or transferred to a cell with no other practitioners so that they don’t hear anything positive about Falun Gong.
One head brainwashing assistant is Fu Guiying, who was once a volunteer coordinator of practitioners’ activities in Linyi City. Fu once forced Ms. Li Jianmei, who had a problem with her legs, to stand for a month. Ms. Li ended up having difficulty walking and has to use a wheelchair.
Fu claimed that the guards were her role models. Despite the fact that she spared no effort in helping the guards “transform” practitioners, the guards also added toxic drugs to her food.
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