The 2007 Chinese Classical Dance Competition that is scheduled to take place at the Skirball Center for the Performing Arts at New York University aims at promoting Chinese dance and traditional Chinese culture. Recently the New York University Chinese Culture Club (NYUCCC) published a statement attacking the competition in order to stop it from happening.
Mr. Chen Yonglin, a former Chinese diplomat in Sydney, says that the NYUCCC has been established and controlled by the Chinese Consulate in New York. Mr. Yang Lixin is able to speak from his own experience as a three-term vice-president of the Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CSSA) in Belgium about the role played by NYUCCC. Below is an interview reported from NTDTV in Brussels.
Some Chinese students believe that the NYUCCC, a Chinese club trying to sabotage NTDTV's Chinese dance competition, is controlled and funded by the Chinese Consulate. What exactly is the relationship between CSSAs and Chinese consulates in different countries? With this question in mind we interviewed Mr. Yang Lixin, who was a three-term vice-president of the Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CSSA) in Brussels, Belgium.
Yang: "In fact many activities of the CSSAs are joint efforts of the associations and the Chinese consulates, which carry out part of their political mission by mobilizing the CSSAs. Of course the consulates, especially the education division, will provide funding."
Responding to the actions of NYUCCC, Yang expressed his views, saying "Many Chinese students studying overseas think that maintaining a good relationship with the Chinese Consulates is a way to show their patriotism; they love their country, but have erroneously equated the Chinese communist regime with China." Yang: "I think that in reality Chinese students oftentimes may not know the orders issued by the consulates and the real purpose behind those orders, most of which have political goals. The overseas Chinese students should at least form their own opinions and judgments instead of being used as a political tool by the Chinese consulates. Otherwise they will discover that they have often been used."
In addition to Yang's account of the role of the CSSAs, from information on the CSSA websites in various countries, we can also see signs of the Chinese consulates' control. The CSSA in Wuerzburg, Germany, for example, has published its constitution on its website, which includes this clause: "In the event that the CSSA is closed, the [Chinese] Embassy must be informed, and the money left must be returned to the embassy."