"China's Third Republic"
Declaration passes at
CDP Party Congress
JPK reports from the site of
the CDP First Party Congress
in Rhode Island
By John P. Kusumi
June 4 is that day in every year that is the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown and massacre, as occurred in Beijing, China on June 4, 1989. That makes it a busy time for Chinese dissidents.
This year it was more busy than usual. Xu Wenli, a leading Chinese dissident who was a co-founder of the China Democracy Party (an opposition political party founded in Mainland China in 1998), chose June 4 of this year to open the First Party Congress, convened by the China Democracy Party United Headquarters - Overseas Division. (Note. Xu Wenli is among the dissidents now in exile, hence "overseas" to China. After his 2002 arrival in exile, Xu became a professor at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.)
Three more items this year made June 4 into a "busy news day" in the Chinese democracy movement.
The key public communique from the CDP Party Congress is the Declaration of China's Third Republic. This informs observers as to the intended shape of China's future, as envisioned by dissidents in the CDP. The vision held out is one that adheres closely to the Republic of China as it existed before the Communist Party took over in 1949. It may be a fair summary to say that CDP wants to "restore" the Republic of China.
The Declaration that was approved by the Party Congress on June 4, 2007 is a short three sentences. The text says--
"We shall pursue the spirit and tradition of the leaders of the Revolution of 1911 and their creation of 'Asia's First Republic.' We shall acknowledge and respect the 1946 People’s Constitutional Convention and the establishment of the Second Republic. And we solemnly declare our aspiration to build a Third Republic based on the principles of freedom, equality, human rights and constitutional democracy."
As seen above, the Declaration becomes the guiding star of the China Democracy Party, and will be added into the Party Constitution. Other orders of business at the Party Congress include the Party Constitution and leadership.
Also, this author gave "this year's June 4 speech" to the Congress, the third rendition of that speech in as many days. U.S. President George W. Bush was scolded for a third time for his weakness in the face of Communist China. (For web readers, see the speech in a separate blog post. For email readers, the speech is appended. See below.)
The speeches were incidental to dissident events -- there remains a second item beyond the Congress that made June 4 into a "busy news day" in the Chinese democracy movement. That other item is the arrest of Wei Jingsheng, another leading Chinese dissident known as "China's most famous dissident."
Wei traveled to Japan on June 1, expecting to speak at a gathering related to the Tiananmen Square crackdown. He never made it to his expected speaking engagement on June 3, 2007. Japanese customs police at Narita airport arrested him upon his arrival in Japan. Japan's government actually cared to stop Wei from speaking at the Tokyo observance of the Tiananmen anniversary. Apparently, there is a special variety of Japanese visa for which Wei did not apply. Instead, he sought "permission for landing in transit" on his way to Guam. This type of entry is routinely granted in Japan; evidently, someone in that government saw fit to object to Wei's attendance at a June 4 memorial observance.
I first heard the news during the June 2 rally, opposite China's embassy in Washington, while I waited to speak. Dr. Quan Nguyen was speaking, as a Vietnamese dissident offering solidarity to Chinese dissidents. (Vietnamese freedom lovers join in protest of the Tiananmen Square massacre.) From his speech, these words: "Before I finish my piece, I heard the bad news that our great friend Wei Jingsheng was arrested yesterday at the airport in Japan. I and my organization [the International Committee to Support the Non-Violent Movement for Human Rights in Vietnam] join with our friends, our Chinese friends, to protest [to] the Japanese government."
That same evening, the news appeared in emails from the Wei Jingsheng Foundation. At this writing, late on June 4 (U.S. east coast time), the disposition of Wei Jingsheng is unresolved. Japan is being accused of mistreating him. Concerned people can contact the Japanese embassy in the USA at 1-202-238-6700, or fax 1-202-328-2187. The Narita customs office in Japan is reachable at 81-476-326-848.
A third item, beyond the Congress, which made June 4 memorable was the arrest of 200 protestors at Tiananmen Square itself. They attempted to gather to commemorate the 18th anniversary of that massacre. Chinese police arrested all of them. Even so, the appearance of 200 people for that purpose speaks of brazen and open dissent. China is in fact changing. Dissidents in this year's gatherings have spoken about how many web postings show open contempt for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). China's internet police cannot erase the messages as quickly as they are posted. For the CCP, the gig is just about up.
When time permits, I will write a "think piece" of analysis, about the Third Republic of China and its meaning in the Chinese democracy movement. For now, I will sign off -- "In Providence, Rhode Island, this is your roving reporter. Back to you."
Published June 4, 2007 by the China Support Network (CSN). Begun as the American response group in 1989, CSN represents Americans who are "on the side" of the students in Tiananmen Square -- standing for democratic reform, human rights, and freedom in China. For dissident news; to support a stronger China policy; or get more information, see http://www.chinasupport.net/.