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If it were not for fact that PRC’s propaganda is meant to mask serious human rights violations including mass detentions and executions it would be almost comical similar in vein to “Keystone Cops”. The PRC has contradicted itself over their facts more times than can be touched on here. These contradictions are not minor, nor are they so deeply hidden that it would require minute investigate analysis to reveal. These are contradictions of purported facts that an average person, with half a day to spare, a computer, access to Internet and either CNN’s, BBC’s or People’s Daily archives would easily be able to uncover. Some examples are:
In 1999 it was reported that head of XUAR, Abdul’ahat Abdurxit, had stated that terrorist incidents had died down and had consisted of several bombing and one or two politically motivated assassinations in previous ten years. Then we have post “9/11” statements from PRC claiming over 200 hundred terrorist incidents since 1987 perpetrated by 15 Uygur terrorist organisations and resulting in 163 deaths and 440 injuries.
As recently as December 2003 we had an extraordinary series of events. On 15th December PRC, through it’s news organ People’s Daily, released an item naming for “first time publicly” Uygur terrorists organisations and their leaders and openly called upon rest of world to assist in their capture. One of those named was alleged leader of East Turkestan Islamic Movement, (ETIM) only internationally proscribed Uygur terrorist group and considered by Chinese, supposedly as one would think, public enemy number one.
On 23rd of same month PRC had to provide a statement saying that this Uygur “Bin Laden” had actually been killed in a raid by Pakistanis on a rag tag bunch of Al Qaeda suspects two months prior. To add insult to injury Pakistanis claimed that PRC had aided in his bodies’ identification at time. Is this tenor of a nation so in fear of it’s supposed terrorist threat?
The disturbing thing in all this, however, is that despite these and many more glaring anomalies; despite various Uygur diaspora organisations tearing apart every Chinese Communique for accuracy; despite remonstrations of several Human rights organisations such as Amnesty International ; despite warnings of UN Human Rights Commission and, despite analysis of academic experts, that world’s leaders continue to appear so “blind” to propaganda.
When US State department supported China in listing of ETIM as a proscribed organisation by United Nations it released a statement which said, in part, that it had done so based on facts provided by PRC and some nebulous news articles printed by Hong Kong and a Russian Newsagencies. Not only was this fairly weak “evidence” but it came less than a year after a US special envoy on counter terrorism stating that US did not consider Uygur independence organisations terrorists.
One simple “wink wink, nudge nudge, you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours’ for whatever reasons, in name of whatever “greater good”, had validated and provided endorsement to PRC’s policy of enforced Sinofication and effectively allowed PRC greater scope and freedom to complete task at hand. Without over dramatisation had we not seen this all before in diplomatic relations with pre War Nazi Germany?
Much harm has been caused, human rights have and continue to be to be severely violated, executions have not stopped all with nary a word of reproach from “Free World”. The time has come, some two and a half years after “War on Terrorism” was declared, for world to step back and re-identify it’s real enemies and then to strike them hard and relentlessly. The war on genuine terror must be pursued vigorously and ultimately be successful. But, it is also now time to identify those regimes that are using “War” to mask furtherance of their ethnic, religious and political agendas and strike them , metaphorically speaking, equally as hard.
It has to be remembered that a terrorist is not only person on a crowded bus with a bomb. Terrorist states have far greater power and projection than any supposed terrorist generalissimo whose end is dying in mud of some Pakistani backwater town.
Stephen Sullivan is an Australian and amateur "Uygurologist" who has written several articles on the Uygur people of China. He also publishes several web sites on the Turkic peoples of Central Asia under the masthead "uygurWORLD"