Saturday, June 15, 2013

NY Times Interviews Author of SOS Letters

The New York Times Interviews Author of Masanjia Labor Camp SOS Letters


Last year, an SOS letter was found
in a box of Halloween decorations.
This raised international concern.
The New York Times (NYT) recently
interviewed the author of the letter.
Let’s take a look.
Last December, Oregon local media reported
that a mysterious letter asking for help was
found hidden in a box of Halloween decorations.
In the letter, it describes the torture
of prisoners in Masanjia Labor Camp,
including Falun Gong practitioners.
It pleads for help from the international community.
On June 12, a NYT reporter interviewed
several victims from China’s labor camps.
One of them, a 47 year-old man, told
NYT that he was the author of the letter.
He said that the letter was one of over 20 secret letters
he wrote during 2 years of being in Masanjia labor camp.
This man is surnamed Zhang.
He said: “For a long time, I imagined that
some of the letters would be found overseas.
But as time passed, I gave up
hope, and forgot about them.”
The report emphasizes that other victims verify his words.
His handwriting and English ability also match the letter.
Zhang also says that it was
extremely risky to write the letters.
It was prohibited to have a pen and paper in the labor camp.
He took the pen and paper when cleaning the prison office.
He wrote letters when his cellmates were asleep.
He also had to be very careful not to wake others.
He hid the letter in the hollow
metal piping of the bunk bed.
He had to choose a good time to put
the letter in the box of decorations.
Political commentator Xia Xiaoqiang comments
that Mr. Zhang took great risks, in order to tell the
world the truth about the persecution to Falun Gong
practitioners, and to appeal to stop the persecution.
Xia Xiaoqiang: “Through Mr. Zhang’s hardships,
we can see that what the outside world knows
about the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP)
persecution of Falun Gong is only tip of an iceberg.
We don’t know how many more Falun Gong
practitioners are still being persecuted and killed.
Because the CCP has blocked all
information, these evil crimes remain hidden.”
According to NYT, all the victims agree that the prison
used the most ruthless methods of torture against
Falun Gong practitioners who refused to give up their faith.
Besides electric shock, prison guards would
tie each of a persons four limbs to one of four
beds, and kicked the beds apart little by little.
Some prisoners were tied like that for several days
without food or drink, lying on their excrement.
Mrs. Xie, Falun Gong practitioner:
“That’s the most infamous torture
in Masanjia, called stretch torture.
There were two bunk beds, one
on the left and one on the right.
They tie you onto the upper beds
with your arms open and legs spread.
There were people pulling the two beds at both sides.
Your arms and legs will be stretched to extreme.
It is just like being pulled apart by horses,
which was used in the ancient time.
The tendons of your legs and arms would
be injured, and you can’t move afterwards.”
Mrs. Xie, who was detained in the “Masanjia
Women’s Labor Camp”, told NTD that the CCP
authorities tried to force her to give up her faith.
They would not let her sleep for three consecutive
days, and threw ice on her until she passed out.
Mrs. Xie also indicates that there are various torture
methods used in “Masanjia Women’s Labor Camp”.
These include the “tiger bench, isolation in small
cell, hanging, and being tied to the dead bed”.
There was also a dungeon, a water
dungeon, and ‘death indicators’.
Death from torture was called
suicide or death from illness.
Xia Xiaoqiang: “The CCP’s persecution of
Falun Gong has been extended to other countries.
This is included in the US and other
western countries and governments.
For instance, a typical example is that the CCP
sabotaged freedom of speech in Denmark recently.
Similar cases have also occurred in many other countries.
It also indicates that the CCP is actually
challenging western civilization, and law.”
Xia Xiaoqiang highlights that the CCP’s
persecution of Falun Gong has lasted for 14 years.
It has used a huge amount of national sources
to maintain the persecution during those 14 years.
It also destroyed social morality in China,
seriously affected Chinese society.
No ruling power should act like that.