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Week of November 3, 2000

Week of August 10, 2001

The U.S. and China This Week

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DOMESTIC: Falun Gong Devastated by Crackdown

SUMMARY: (8/6) - Two years after the Chinese governmennt’s crackdown on Falun Gong began, the spiritual group has been decimated. “Falun Gong has been creative and has staying power far beyond what people thought,?a Western expert said. But as an organized protest movement it’s basically crushed.?According to internal Chinese research, Falun Gong once had tens of millions of members in China. Now estimates are that the group has only tens or hundreds of thousands of members. Those individuals still with the movement are clandestine and practice at home. On July 22, the two-year anniversary of the crackdown, just four protesters were arrested in Tiananmen Square.

The crackdown has involved arrests, reeducation programs, negative campaigning in the media, and, according to human rights groups, torture. “We are close to completely wiping out Falun Gong,?State Council official Zhao Chongxing said last month. Last January, several Falun Gong members set themselves on fire in Tiananmen Square and two died. That incident and the media attacks have eroded whatever legitimacy the group had with ordinary Chinese, even though Falun Gong officials in the US claim the group does not condone suicide and that the incident in Tiananmen Square was unsanctioned.

Recently, the Beijing government put on an anti-Falun Gong exhibit at the downtown Museum of Military Affairs. There were more than 850 photographs, drawings and editorials about 134 alleged cases of Falun Gong members hurting themselves or others. The English-language China Daily warned of “lurking danger,?spiritual poison,?and “bloodcurdling mayhem?brought about by the sect.

Falun Gong remains legal in Hong Kong, which has widespread autonomy under the “one country, two systems?formula that was set up for its governance when it became part of China again in 1997. However, Hong Kong’s chief executive, Tung Chee-hwa, has called the sect an “evil cult.?#060;/font>

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U.S.-CHINA RELATIONS: President Jiang Meets With U.S. Senators

SUMMARY:  (8/8) - Chinese President Jiang Zemin met with a group of U.S. senators August 8 and discussed various issues, including National Missile Defense (NMD), missile technology exports, and detained scholars with U.S. ties. According to Senator Joseph Biden (D-Del.), who headed the delegation, Jiang did not directly answer a question Biden asked about how China would react if the U.S. got Russia to accept America developing NMD. Instead, Jiang talked generally about the post-Cold War world; Biden interpreted Jiang’s response as showing flexibility. “I don’t think it’s the highest thing on their agenda,?Biden maintained. “It just didn’t seem to be the compelling issue for them at the moment.?#060;/font>

But Defense Minister Chi Haotian, in a separate meeting with the delegation, said NMD would be “detrimental to trust among nations around the world.?Biden said Jiang asserted China is abiding by all pledges on arms proliferation, and made a point of stressing China is not exporting missile technology to North Korea. Biden said Jiang indicated it would be bad if Korea had the capability to launch missiles. On the issue of detained scholars with ties to the U.S., Biden said Jiang agreed with another member of the delegation, Senator Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), that the U.S. and China should negotiate an agreement delineating the rights of American citizens detained in China.

Besides Biden and Specter, the delegation consisted of Senators Fred D. Thompson (R-Tenn.) and Paul S. Sarbanes (D-Md.).

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INTERNATIONAL: China Censors Memoirs of Lee Kuan Yew

SUMMARY: (8/8) - Chinese censors are deleting and rewriting sections of the second volume of memoirs of Lee Kuan Yew, who governed Singapore for 30 years, according to publishers in China and Singapore. China has recently closed several newspapers and warned editors not to go public with controversial stories before the 16th Communist Party Congress next year.

Zeng Huijie, an editor for the Chinese Foreign Language Press, said her company is rewriting sections of Lee’s book, The Singapore Story, which was published in Singapore last September and in Hong Kong and Taiwan last October. “Some of his political opinions may not be accepted here by the authorities, so they are changed in many places,?Zeng said.

In the book, Lee writes a considerable amount about China. While most of what he says is positive, at one point he maintains that Communism hurt China. He also criticizes high-ranking Communist Party official Li Peng. However, he praises President Jiang Zemin and former leader Deng Xiaoping. The first volume of Lee’s work came out in China a month after it was published in Singapore in September 1998. Sections about Lee’s efforts to suppress Communism in Southeast Asia in the 1950s and 1960s were struck from the Chinese version of that volume.

An editor at Lianhe Zaobao publishing house in Singapore, which published Lee’s book, said Lee or a publishing house representative would look over the Chinese version before it is published. The official said only Taiwan published the book without anything deleted.

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