As the President of China, the General Secretary of the CCP and the Chairman of the Central Military Commission, Hu Jintao's first visit to the US was a long time in the planning, with careful consideration given to every aspect–or so they thought. No one on Hu's staff was able to predict Hurricane Katrina, who has so rudely dismantled the president's itinerary, leaving only a shadow of the original tour intact. Many observe that what was meant to be a smooth ride has become full of unexpected twists and turns.
What Is the Nature of Hu's Visit?
The answer to this question became somewhat of an issue between the Chinese and U.S. governments of late, with representatives from each side engaged in six to eight-month-long negotiations that have yet to yield an agreement.
On August 25, the spokesperson for China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kong Quan, announced that Hu Jintao would be leaving on a visit to the West, including stops in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Hu was set to be gone from the 5th to the 17th of September and had included in his itinerary a stop in New York for the 60th anniversary of the United Nations.
A White House official was quick to point out that Hu's scheduled visit to Washington DC is "by no means a state visit." This comment seems to signal a cool reception for the Chinese president, but on the other hand, the White House is still planning a welcome on the south lawn, accompanied by 21-gun salutes. A VIP brunch at the White House will also go ahead as planned, but the banquet and joint press conference were not put into the agenda.
According to a Washington D.C. source, the treatment of Hu Jintao's visit requested by the Chinese Embassy in the U.S. is extremely fierce and has astonished U.S. officials.
Falun Gong Practitioners in U.S. and Canada Request That Their Governments Deny Entrance to Hu's Entourage
When Falun Gong groups in both the U.S. and Canada first heard of Hu's intended visit, they reacted immediately by petitioning their governments to deny entrance to China's Secretary of Commerce Bo Xilai and the Vice Governor of Liaoning Province Fu Deren, both members of Hu's entourage, on the grounds that each stands accused of crimes committed against humanity in relation to the persecution of Falun Gong.
Many Canadian congresspeople and renowned international human rights attorneys attended a press conference held to call upon the Canadian government to "fulfill its responsibility and duty by denying entrance visas to Fu Deren and Bo Xilai."
On August 29, U.S. based Falun Gong students sent a letter to the U.S. government, requesting that it refuse entrance to Bo and Fu based on a July 28, 2004 decision in the D.C. district court that condemned both of these men for committing "crimes of torture and massacre" in persecuting Falun Gong practitioners
In 2004, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police placed 45 senior Chinese officials involved in the persecution of Falun Gong on a special surveillance list. Under Canadian law, anyone on the list can be refused entry into the country and could face possible expatriation and prosecution in the Canadian courts. Bo Xilai's name is on this list.
The CCP Struggles not to See or Hear Falun Gong Protestors
In anticipation of Hu's visit, Chinese Embassies in the US and Canada have been wracking their brains to devise effective measures for preventing human rights protesters from coming into contact with the Chinese president's group. They have strict instruction that protesters, especially Falun Gong practitioners, are to be neither seen nor heard.
When Hu's plane touches down in Seattle, it will not be at the international airport, but at private landing facilities provided by Boeing.
In order to not see the demonstration crowd, after Hu gets off the plane, he will immediately travel by car to Boeing's heliport. He will then travel by helicopter to the Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Seattle.
When the former Chinese Communist Party president Jiang Zemin visited the U.S., in order to avoid the Falun Gong crowd, he detoured via the hotel trash lane, which is a complete joke.
Local Chinese Embassies Pay Members of the Community to Welcome Hu
It has become the convention that when CCP leaders visit a foreign country, the Chinese Embassy there will pay poorer members of the local Chinese community to attend a welcoming ceremony. This has been the case preceding Hu's visit.
On September 3, a New York Chinese student association sent out a notice giving the location and details for the reception. Anyone who comes is promised free prepared food, subway fare, and a free buffet in the weekend.
Another source claims that participants will also receive money and free clothing.
Is it not humiliating to China that it must pay its own citizens to welcome its officials to a foreign land? Surely, no other country resorts to such bribery in an effort to save face.
Hiring a Welcome Crew is Shameful And Laughable
After the CCP leaders' need to hire people to welcome them was exposed overseas, many people came to despise them for bringing such shame to the Chinese people.
Renowned democracy activist Wei Jingsheng said that the CCP has set a tradition of these techniques, they threaten or bribe. This is the embassy's political duty every time.
The Epoch Times columnist Zhang Tianliang comments that there is a double shame in the welcome crowds. One is that the CCP is so despised by its own people that it must pay them to offer a proper welcome. The other is the farce of the officials pretending that the hired people are genuine when the world knows that they are not. These hirelings all have their own agendas, ranging from food and shelter to the acquisition of future business connections in China. None are genuine and all bring shame to the nation of China.