Gao Zhisheng's Open Letter to the Jury of Wang Wenyi

May 2, 2006 Updated: May 2, 2006

Respectable Ladies and Gentlemen of Wang Wenyi's Jury,

Greetings! First let me express my respect to you all.

When I take up my pen to write this letter to you from Beijing, China, my lawyer's certificate has been illegally suspended for nearly six months by my government. During this time, the Chinese communist authority has been using, each day, at least a hundred policemen, secret agents, and gang members to monitor me, my wife and my 12-year old daughter on a 24-hour basis. They follow us closely, harassing and terrifying us, disregarding any rationality, morality, commonly recognized principles, and even laws and regulations that this government has itself published.

My law firm has been forcibly closed by violent means. The Chinese regime's agents have not only cut off our family's connection and communication with the outside world; they have also, in the past six months, illegally kidnapped several hundred people who came to visit me. Many of them are still nowhere to be found. Still, my family and I are much “luckier” than the criminally-charged Ms. Wang Wenyi and many more Falun Gong practitioners who have been persecuted in the most inhumane means.

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, you are witnessing and serving the independent legal system of the US, a system that is as able as the human civilization and wisdom can offer thus far to prevent injustice. I should consider Ms. Wang Wenyi lucky to be tried under this kind of system instead of mainland China's Party-controlled and terror-filled “legal system.” However, as far as Ms. Wang Wenyi is concerned, this trial itself is unjust.

Even though I have much trust in the just nature of your country's legal system, each individual case will bring to bear its own underlying background. In the case of Ms. Wang Wenyi, what is the psychological background that is related to her action for which she is charged? What is the background against which Wang Wenyi raised her wish that Mr. Bush ask the Chinese communist regime to stop its persecution of Falun Gong?

In other words, what is happening in China, a country that is being violently controlled by the Communist Party? What is the nature of the atrocity that has happened in China that prompted Wang Wenyi to voice her urgent protest in that kind of setting? What is the magnitude of the atrocity? How do we consider the relationship between the atrocity that is taking place in China and the large tenet of human civilization? How do we balance the value of stopping this atrocity and the need to maintain order at the event?

If you do not consider these background factors that influenced or even determined Wang Wenyi's choice, you will not be able to ensure a just conclusion. If so, the value for legal justice in your country and the reputation of your legal system will suffer damage just as Ms. Wang Wenyi would on the receiving end of such a trial. Such damage should be avoidable.

As a reporter, Ms. Wang Wenyi is familiar with the rules set for people involved in situations like she faced. This is where each of you in the jury, as well as the judge, need to extend your normal consideration. For someone who knows the rules, for a believer (of Falun Gong), as a normal human being who did not have any negative record, why did she choose to violate the rules at the risk of bringing troubles for herself?

Dr. Wenyi Wang (C) demands that Chinese Communist Chairman Hu Jintao end the persecution of Falun Gong during a ceremony on the South Lawn off the White House on April 20, 2006 in Washington, DC. (Roger L. Wollenberg/Getty Images)
Dr. Wenyi Wang (C) demands that Chinese Communist Chairman Hu Jintao end the persecution of Falun Gong during a ceremony on the South Lawn off the White House on April 20, 2006 in Washington, DC. (Roger L. Wollenberg/Getty Images)

Respectable ladies and gentlemen of the jury, Ms. Wang Wenyi requested President Bush and Mr. Hu Jintao to “stop persecuting Falun Gong.” We must understand the extremely weighty background behind this simple request that involves the most inhumane treatment of Falun Gong practitioners in the last six years.

To understand fully the truth of the Chinese Communist regime's bloody persecution of Falun Gong practitioners, we face two limitations.

First, the horror of the persecution has surpassed any human imagination that all the human words and language expressions cannot express its cruelty and violence.

Second, the rest of the civilized world, the U.S. included, has shown a despairing level of numbness and a lack of concern in the face of the Chinese communist regime's open and bloody killing of free believers. This lack of concern not only encouraged the continuation of the Chinese communist regime's crimes in broad daylight, it also constitutes the necessary condition, a situation of extreme helplessness, under which Ms. Wang Wenyi broke the reporters' protocol.

After the disclosure of the Sujiatun camp, the Chinese Communist regime sped up the genocide in at least 36 similar concentration camps. And such genocide, while you debate how to punish Dr. Wang Wenyi, is still going on.

The brutal persecution of Falun Gong practitioners by the Chinese Communist party (CCP) is the key to Ms. Wang Wenyi's chosen behavior that is currently being criminally charged. To know (it is only possible to know partially) the truth of this persecution is absolutely necessary for your honor to make a fair judgment of this case.

Herein, I sincerely present my three open letters to the CCP leaders including Mr. Hu Jintao, which were written based on my on-site investigations of those being persecuted and the relatives of those being killed as well as those with inside information. The horrifying, suffocating and barbaric crimes described in these three letters are not even the tip of the iceberg of the extreme crimes the CCP has conducted against this unfortunate group over the last six years, yet these words can assist you to make a full and objective judgment over the value of Ms. Wang Wenyi's chosen behavior that is being charged.

Although I have provided the open letters I wrote to the CCP leaders on the persecution against Falun Gong, I still want to quote two paragraphs from the third letter. May every one of you pay attention to the tragedy as well as the threat and destruction by the CCP to human civilization:

“We can see that the power symbolized by the number 6-10 [ Editor's note: a reference to the 610 Office ] continues to 'interface' with the public through ways such as killing a person's physical body and spirit, shackles, chains, electric shock tortures, and “tiger benches.” The nature of this power has become that of a criminal gang. It continues to torture our mothers, sisters, children, and our entire nation. Mr. Hu and Mr. Wen, as members of our nation in special positions at this time, and especially as individuals who are perceived by the majority of the public as being conscientious, you should face everything together with all of us.”

“At this moment, with a trembling heart and a trembling pen, I am writing down the tragic experiences of those who have been persecuted in the last six years. Among the true accounts of unbelievable brutality, among the records of the government's inhuman torture of its own people, the immoral acts that shocked my soul the most were the lewd yet routine practice of attacking women's genitals by 6-10 Office staff and the police. Almost every woman's genitals and breasts or every man's genitals have been sexually assaulted during the persecution in a most vulgar fashion. Almost all who have been persecuted, be they male or female, were first stripped naked before any torture.

No language or words could describe or re-create our government's vulgarity and immorality in this respect. Who with a warm body could afford to stay silent when faced with such truths?”

Respected sir, when you have learned without any prejudice the truth of the CCP's inhumane persecution against Falun Gong practitioners in the past six years, you will come to a conclusion: Ms. Wang Wenyi is today's hero of humankind, her courage and morality demonstrate the glory of noble humanity; she represents the hope and the future of human civilization. Her behavior is not what the prosecutor has charged her with: a crime to harm civilization.

Another horrible phenomenon that I must mention, which was not covered in my third open letter, is the CCP's absolute control of the media to massively slander Falun Gong; the CCP forbids the media to ever mention a word about the inhumane circumstances Falun Gong practitioners are facing.

The recent incidents of the large-scale organ harvesting conducted by the Chinese communist regime in the Sujiatun concentration camp from still-living Falun Gong practitioners, whose bodies were then cremated, has been exposed by people who experienced or witnessed these crimes, and has been confirmed by additional evidence. Such crimes are more than enough to convict the CCP of “crimes against humanity” and “genocide.”

However, when such crimes are revealed to the world, with even greater pain we witness another equally horrible crime: the numbness and apathy of part of society, including the U.S. government and society, to such inhumane crimes. Shackled by greed and short-term economic benefit, man has degenerated into being indifferent to humanity, morality and civilization, factors deciding humans' future.

The evil suppression from the Chinese government that Dr. Wang Wenyi and other Falun Gong practitioners have been confronted with is beyond human imagination. These people have been shouting out the truth to the world at the top of their lungs for over six years, yet their calls still can not penetrate the shell of numbness and coldness the international world wraps itself in.

After the disclosure of the Sujiatun camp, the Chinese Communist regime sped up the genocide in at least 36 similar concentration camps in order to destroy evidence. And such genocide, while you are now debating how to punish Dr. Wang Wenyi just for what she said, is still going on.

This is the most harrowing scene in human history. When the leaders of the U.S. and the CCP meet, they surely want to present a peaceful, happy picture, and illustrate the dignity of the leaders. But comparing the value of such a picture with that of stopping the continuous inhumanity, we all know which is more important.

It is the CCP regime led by Mr. Hu Jintao that conducted the “crimes against humanity” and “genocide” that Dr. Wang Wenyi called to stop. Bush's government, however, most ridiculously chose to ignore such inhuman, immoral and brutal crimes, and to work out an “already mature Sino-America relationship” with this most tyrannical and inhuman devil in human history.

Such a heartless action by the U.S. government does not only strongly support the CCP regime to continue such inhuman crimes, but also leaves Dr. Wang Wenyi no other choice than to remind people in such a sensitive situation: “The world can not stay numb any more!” — a declaration that President Bush and the U.S. government should have voiced with the utmost determination.

Today, world media and Chinese people are all admiring Dr. Wang Wenyi for the noble halo of humanity around her. The U.S. legal system should be independent from all irrelevant forces and powers, but it can not be free from the common values of human civilization. The moment when Dr. Wang Wenyi is sentenced guilty would be the moment when the history of the judiciary gives birth to a monster independent from the principles of human civilization.

Thank you for your attention.

Gao Zhisheng At home in Beijing, China, besieged by secret agents April 29, 2006

[Based on the transcript of a telephone call]