On 12 noon, August 15, attorney Gao Zhisheng was secretly arrested by a dozen plainclothes policemen at his sister's house in Dongying city, Shandong Province.
Human rights activists are deeply concerned about his sudden arrest.
An Epoch Times reporter called Gao Zhisheng's close friend Guo Feixiong at home.
Mr. Guo said that Gao's arrest this time was either an attempt by the Chinese communist regime to settle old debts or to sound things out. But this move will certainly provoke people's anger all over the world and bring about an "unprecedented scale" of rescue and democratic movement tide. Following is the conversation between the reporter and Mr Guo.
Reporter: I heard that you have spoken to many people on the telephone and exchanged views on the secret arrest of attorney Gao Zhisheng in Shandong. What is your opinion on this matter?
Guo Feixiong: Till now, I have not been able to get accurate information because there are several possibilities for this abduction. One possibility is because of the illegal trial of Chen Guangcheng. The authorities abduct people like Gao Zhisheng who might carry out a nonviolent protest beforehand in order to control the situation.
The second possibility is to put Gao in prison for a few months as punishment before passing a verdict to suspend the sentence.
The third possibility is to strike a vicious blow and sentence Gao to 8 to 10 years imprisonment. At this point, I am not sure which possibility is right but I think it is most likely to be the third possibility.
According to the usual practice of the autocratic regime, it always settles old debts after the autumn harvest. It is nearly autumn now and the regime must be thinking that it is time to seek revenge.
Reporter: Attorney Gao Zhisheng is now extremely well-known worldwide, yet the communist regime has now dealt with him so severely. Has it considered about domestic and international opinion and pressure?
Guo Feixiong: I think they must have weighed it repeatedly. If Gao Zhisheng has truly been arrested, this means that the autocratic power within the regime has come together once again to strike its enemies with vicious blows. I would like to express my strongest protest against their arrest of Gao Zhisheng and would like to devote most of my efforts to rescue Gao Zhisheng. I would also like to promote the concept of values, legal system and human rights represented by Gao Zhisheng. I think the communist regime will pay a high price for their illegal and groundless attacks on Gao Zhisheng, a price that they might not necessarily be able to afford.
For example, to my knowledge, amongst the ordinary public officials, those working in the legal system, attorneys, the national cadre, college professors, ordinary appellants and Christians, there are many who are sympathetic to Gao Zhisheng. In our day to day life, many have told me that if something happened to attorney Gao, they would come out to support him. I think it is time for them to honor their words. If we have a rescue plan that can be implemented, it would create a kind of surging power to fight against the autocratic regime.
Another point is that I believed Gao Zhisheng's friends overseas, including Falun Gong members, Chinese democratic movements, global Chinese people with conscience, will all take actions using various means to assist and rescue attorney Gao Zhisheng. It is my prediction that the scale of the domestic and international power to rescue Gao Zhisheng will be unprecedented.
Before the Olympics, the whole world is watching China. I think the international community will make a fair judgment as to what the Chinese communist regime has done and will revise their policy towards China in accordance with whether actions taken by the regime are acceptable by the international society. The future of Gao Zhisheng actually has an effect on the foreign relations of China. This is my prediction. I think global friends who appreciate Gao's character and the spirit he represents should make efforts to jointly rescue Gao Zhisheng.
Gao Zhisheng is a symbol of China. He marks the condition of human rights and the legal system in China. Today's China is already too dark, China is already lawless. If Gao Zhisheng encounters severe suppression without strong support, it is hard to imagine China's future direction. Therefore, we urge those who are able to bear the responsibility—this is the time to stand out for the sake of China and its people.
People in mainland China judged that arresting Gao Zhisheng is not a conclusion. If they put Gao Zhisheng in prison, they will arrest a dozen more to follow. We are mentally prepared; we are not afraid of the Chinese communist regime. No matter how many people get arrested, more will follow.
Reporter: There is a saying that the arrest of Gao Zhisheng also reflects the condition of the internal strife between the two systems in the Chinese communist regime. What do you think about this?
Guo Feixiong: A stern power struggle carried out during the 17th National People's Congress is inevitable. During this struggle, how to handle the uprising human rights force in the society is a big challenge for each faction. Looking at the current situation, their arrest of Gao proves that some of the people inside the Party have already colluded and are ready to strike a vicious blow. Often this is not a signal of violent power struggle but a signal that they have reached a secret dirty compromise. But if our civilian and global rescue of attorney Gao Zhisheng is formidable, the united power will be big. This will inspire a power struggle within the Party and promote people of conscience within the system to stand up.
Reporter: They arrested attorney Gao Zhisheng, is it because they are using this event to test how big is the strength of domestic anti-Chinese Communist regime factions?
Guo Feixiong: I think this might be a ploy. They want to see the extent of forces that can be formed by international society and China's grassroots organizations in the rescue of Gao Zhisheng and make their final decision based on the comparison of strength and the cost.
I think all these factors and considerations exist in the process of the illegal arrest of Gao. Therefore, I suggest that various international and domestic strengths need to be firm and unyielding in rescuing Gao Zhisheng. We are not rescuing one person, but China's entire morale and the human spirit. What we are helping is China's entire democratic movement and the human rights movement. Not only does it have an individual characteristic, but it also has a comprehensive overall significance.
Gao Zhisheng's sufferings are worthwhile. Generally, when a person's reputation reaches a certain degree, his imprisonment and the rescue actions that follow will make the forces for domestic freedom, democracy and human rights expand further. This despotic ruler did not believe this; they thought they were able to control us and strangle us. Now we must use our clear actions to tell them this is not possible!