Sunday, April 27, 2008

White Flowers for June 4

White Flowers for June 4

A call for public action in China

By John Kusumi
Speech as delivered at rally on the Green of New Haven, CT – 4/26/2008

Hello! Well New Haven, I’m glad to be with you here. I’m glad that we’re putting some attention onto the crimes and the atrocities of Communist China.

You know, I stand before you as a man who is responsible for the China Support Network; and as a man who is saying, ‘stop the Olympics!’ These games are not possible in good conscience to countenance, if they are to be held in Communist-occupied Beijing, China. Just as we can regret that Tibet is Communist-occupied territory, we can also note that Beijing is Communist-occupied territory and that it too should be liberated. The government of China continues to be that of the CCP – the Chinese Communist Party.

Today, I am going to talk briefly about three crackdowns. Of course there are many more than three crackdowns in China, but I will make my point with these: The Tiananmen Square crackdown, the Falun Gong crackdown, and the Tibetan crackdown.

I am told by way of public opinion polling that most Americans feel that placing these Olympics in Communist China was a mistake; half of Americans support a boycott at the opening ceremony; and a third of Americans support a full and complete boycott of these Olympic games. That is where I stand, together with many leading Chinese dissidents. 23% would have the U.S. President order a boycott, as America once undertook when the Soviet Union had the games in 1980. I suppose that the U.S. President can make up his own mind; but in my view, to go to these games reflects a warped sense of priorities.

In this day of satellite and streaming video, I realize that many people will see this speech in Beijing and in Shanghai and elsewhere. I have some words for the Chinese people directly. Am I simply an outsider, bashing China? Or, is the China Support Network integrated with the Chinese democracy movement? I think you will come to see that I am standing with, and in support of, leading Chinese dissidents.

To me, this is not about international relations. This is not about ‘the West’ versus China. I am not hired by the American government; you’ve just heard my view that President George Bush has warped priorities; and I believe I can leave the matter right there – enough said about the American government. I believe that the Chinese democracy movement is of, by, and for the Chinese people. But my group the China Support Network was initially of Americans, by my hand, and for Chinese dissidents.

It began at a time when dissidents needed help. The June 4 crackdown had just occurred, and by that I mean the Tiananmen Square massacre of June 4, 1989. No one can say that this is outsiders against China. Who was rising up then? It was Beijing’s college students – China’s own elite – who wanted an improved version of China. The price of food was up, the price of gasoline was up, the government was a harsh and undemocratic system that ruled by fear and sheltered corruption. The people were not happy, and so they agreed with the students that “there’s got to be a better way” of life. For two months, Communist-occupied Beijing was challenged by student-occupied Tiananmen Square. We learned that in a place run by the Communist Party, there is fear; and, in a place run by students, there is freedom.

Some people have youth and idealism. Others have age and treachery. The treacherous old men who were China’s dictators –themselves became fearful. And so they cleared out the Square in the harshest way possible. 300,000 troops were sent to Beijing and used live ammunition to open fire on unsuspecting civilians, who were otherwise peaceful and unarmed. Some 3,000 people died.

Many died, but others lived, and came to the United States to finish their college educations. That is when the China Support Network and I began to help Chinese dissidents, and our association now has 19 years of history to it. What ever became of the June 4 student leaders? Well, one of them is named Tang Baiqiao, and you already heard a speech from him, earlier today on the program.

Tang Baiqiao tells me that he will participate in a new movement called the ‘Return to China’ movement. And that is necessary because certain exiled Chinese dissidents are blacklisted and not allowed to return to China. It is a profound violation of human rights to deny people their nationality; their citizenship; their full walking rights in their own homeland! Y’know – in the country that is their motherland.

The government of China ought to allow Chinese dissidents to return, unharmed, to China. And next month, I understand that Tang Baiqiao will attempt a return to China in an effort to begin a movement or a groundswell of returning Chinese dissidents. (Applause)

Tiananmen was not China’s last crackdown. In 1999, Jiang Zemin outlawed the practice of Falun Gong. Like the college students, these are peaceful, unarmed civilians. And like too many Chinese people before them, they are treated in a very hideous and cruel way by the CCP’s vile and vicious dictatorship system.

It seems that China’s regime always moves along to focus on the next group of people whom it singles out as a target for persecution. In 1998, Falun Gong was a fine upstanding group. One year later in 1999, they were enemies of the state. In previous persecutions, we have even seen the persecuted become rehabilitated and return to being an accepted group. The capricious CCP targets people by random, arbitrary, and even whimsical fiat.

What horrors do people suffer after they have been targeted for persecution? Well, there is laogai and laojiao, both of which should be abolished. Laogai refers to labor camps, the gulag of China. Laojiao refers to administrative detention with no due process of law, no appeals, and no recourse. Torture is common inside Chinese prisons. And the ultimate affront may be a system of involuntary, forced removal of human organs for medical transplant to others, who pay for organs harvested out of Falun Gong practitioners, who may still be alive up to the time of organ removal. That is a combination of theft plus murder plus profiteering – and it ranks in history much like the medical experiments on prisoners that were performed by Nazi Germany.

If a war were on, we would call it war crimes. Without a war, we call it crimes against humanity. Communist China will be happy to get you a rare human organ, lickety-split. And the speed of the waiting list can only be explained by the fact that hundreds of thousands of Falun Gong practitioners are kept in the incarceration inventory, with their blood types and tissue types tested and known. When their number is called, it is the end of their life; and their only crime would be matters of conscience and belief and religion. That is no crime, whatsoever – these people don’t belong in prison in the first place! This is persecution by capricious government fiat!

Now recently, there is a crackdown in Tibet. We have new photographs, of dead bodies with bullet holes in them. This reminds one of the June 4 occasion because similar photos came from that, and this is mass murder all over again.

Two days ago, I gave a speech and observed that Beijing is in a pickle, or a predicament, and that the only way out is to talk to the Dalai Lama. One day ago, Beijing announced that it will talk to emissaries of the Dalai Lama.

That is a change, and it sounds like a welcome step of progress. However, many people are skeptical because they expect that the government will be there in bad faith. In 1989, treacherous old men were China’s dictators. Treacherous old men do not negotiate in good faith. They do not serve the people or the nation. They only serve themselves.

Let me say this for inside China. Yang Jianli has called for a people’s movement of speaking the truth. That means speak out and speak fearlessly with your genuine and authentic stories and opinions. I endorse that, and I want to remember a group called the Tiananmen Mothers. They are mothers who had children killed in the June 4 massacre. They demand the right to mourn in public; to pay tribute to their dead children. That is a reasonable and righteous demand. The fact that such a right remains denied to them shows us that China lacks justice.

Can you imagine what this means? If, around June 4, they go to Tiananmen Square with a white flower – they may be arrested! Apparently, people with white flowers are enemies of the state! That makes me wonder – are white flowers illegal in China? Or, are people illegal in China? How profoundly wrong is that government – to outlaw either of those, or both of those together!

And so, I want to ask the Chinese people for the white flowers movement of June 4, 2008. Simply take a white flower and head for Tiananmen Square. If many, many people all try to smuggle in white flowers, they cannot stop all of them. If many people answer my call and participate in this activity, then there WILL be white flowers of mourning for the dead victims, finally at last this year, 19 years after the June 4 massacre. People everywhere can show solidarity with this idea by wearing a small white flower on Wednesdays – perhaps every Wednesday until the government meets the demand of the Tiananmen Mothers.

At this time, I want to thank the organizers for arranging many details in today’s event. We even got the sound and the electricity back on. Good work, guys. I want to remind people that there is a group called China Interim Government. It’s mission is to replace the government of Communist China. And a June 4 student leader, Tang Baiqiao as I mentioned, is an officer at the China Interim Government. And so I hope that we will heed his words and their words. And I thank you for your attention to my speech.

Friday, April 4, 2008

China is the new Soviet Union

China is the new Soviet Union

Speech from joint rally for Human Rights Torch Relay;
Boston Massachusetts, March 30 2008

As prepared
By John Kusumi

Thank you Boston; you are wonderful. And thank you to the organizers; today’s event needed your great work to come into being.

Chinese Communism is killing people today. This simple statement is obvious to those who have watched the news out of Tibet during this month, which has been quite intense as for issues of China, human rights abuse, and the summer Olympic Games, which must not take place in Beijing, beginning August 8th.

America used to know that a nuclear-armed, communist superpower is a bad thing. But, especially for our young people, it has become important to have a refresher. Younger folks may not remember when the Soviet Union was America’s enemy, and when certain things were widely and consistently upheld in America: national security, American values, and fundamental principles took precedence, and were more important than free trade. There was no free trade with the Soviet Union, and when they held Olympics in 1980, America boycotted the Games. America’s media was “with the program, on the same page;” between America and the Soviet Union, the was no question and no doubt: They were on America’s side.

We all were. There are always some in opposite positions politically, but Americans by and large were united in the Cold War with the Soviet Union. We all did -- what was best for national security -- which included no free trade with a nuclear-armed, communist superpower. As an aside, why is free trade bad with such a regime? –Because it enriches the dictators, and all parts of their regime. When Tibetans have been shot this month, the bullets are financed by such money, as you yourself may have spent in Wal*Mart. When free trade means a free lunch for communists, dictators, tyrants, and thugs – that is a flawed and faulty policy. And indeed, this is why Tibetans are telling us to boycott products that are Made in China. The China Support Network, my group, agrees and stands with the Tibetans in the Boycott Made In China Coalition.

Dictatorships are only maintained by hurting people. There is no such thing as a benevolent dictatorship, although in Chinese history the Tang Dynasty is remembered like it was the good old days of just and fair rulers. Some Chinese would be happy to turn back the clock to the Tang Dynasty; but leading Chinese dissidents actually have the year 1947 on their minds. It is not literally possible to turn back the hands of time, but it would be possible to have a rollback of China’s situation to 1947. That was two years before Communists came to power, and Chinese parties had conferred after the Second World War. They drew up a new Constitution to guide the new Republic of China, or ROC. That was a democratic Constitution; China did arrive at democracy in 1947. The entire reign of the Communist Party has been a rude interruption to Chinese democracy.

And that Constitution served to guide and govern Taiwan, a remnant of the ROC, for the past 61 years. Taiwan just had a presidential election last week. Taiwan is a splendid example of Chinese democracy, and congratulations are in order for the winner, Ma Ying-jeou.

I am also happy to greet a campaigner who is with us on today’s program. Yang Jianli, the Boston-based Chinese dissident, recently spent five years as a prisoner in China. Yang Jianli, welcome home to freedom, and may freedom go with you on your next trip to China. Congratulations on one victory, and may more success come your way in the future.

I’d say that America’s young people already know that a nuclear-armed, communist superpower is a bad thing. It’s a dictatorship that is hurting and killing people. That’s easy to learn, and it’s plain to see. Who needs a reminder might be Washington, DC. They have been absolutely remiss about Communist China, its abuses, its spying, and its threats to national security. Washington simply likes to keep up appearances while the free trade goes on and on, building up a nuclear-armed, communist superpower.

The very least that America’s politicians could do is to get behind a boycott or a change of venue for the Olympics. That’s the least they can do, short of economic sanctions, which may be preferred by some Chinese dissidents. They understand that a regime of cunning, conniving, and treachery will only respect pressure and strength. To stop the killing in China, every kind of pressure is in order.

The West should pressure China – the world’s leading abuser of human rights – and all of us, from the grass roots to the politicians, should pressure the IOC, the International Olympic Committee and its president, Jacques Rogge, to change the venue of these Olympics. Once again, I feel it is the least they can do in the West’s halls of power.

Alright then, what is the least that Chinese politicians could do? China’s politicians are now using Cultural Revolution rhetoric against the Dalai Lama and the Tibetans. Propaganda such as that is a laughable throwback to the Cultural Revolution, the time in China between 1966 and 1976.

I may feel that China’s leaders should simply surrender to a regime change. However, short of that, there are other steps, and I’ll name three: Stop the killing; release the prisoners; and talk to the Dalai Lama. It is the very least that Chinese leaders can do, and this is a call that is echoing all around the Western world, and from Chinese dissidents.

The intransigence of Beijing’s top Communists is hardening the hard line attitudes of Beijing’s opponents. I have worked to assemble the Freedom First, Olympics Second Coalition, and I bet that it will continue to grow, based on Beijing’s embrace of evil.

My group, the China Support Network, is still here in the wake of the Tiananmen Square massacre. That is when we began to assist Chinese dissidents. When you are on the web, surf on over to And in this year’s campaign, at the bottom line, our proposition is simple: Let’s pressure the IOC to pressure China to stop the killing. –This campaign has its own web site:

At this time, I want to present you with our next act: The band called Light Club is newly formed and making a debut appearance here. They have written a new song for our human rights situation, and so here and now, we are being treated to the first performance of the Freedom First, Olympics Second theme song. There may be one song or two which follow, and I thank them for being here. I thank the organizers once again, and please help me welcome – Light Club.

[Ed. Note--] More joint rallies are upcoming, each with many additional speakers representing persecuted groups, or U.S. officialdom. You are invited to join in support of the Human Rights Torch Relay. Come out for the cause!

  • Providence RI, April 5 at Roger Williams State Park Carousel / 1000 Elmwood Ave (runners at 10am, rally ~11:30-1:30)
  • Washington DC, April 6 at Freedom Plaza / 14th and Pennsylvania Ave
  • Portsmouth NH, April 12 at Market Square (9am-noon)
  • New York City, April 13 at Union Square (Manhattan)
  • Portland ME, April 19 (torch walk at noon at Congress Square; rally 1pm-3pm at City Hall Plaza / 389 Congress St)
  • Princeton NJ, April 24 at Tiger Park, downtown Princeton (noon-2pm)
  • New Haven CT, April 26 at New Haven Green (rally at 1pm followed by torch walk ~3pm)

CSN is participating in the above events. Light Club music will be performed at the New York and New Haven events. There are more events and details at