The changes in China have only begun. Since the former Chongqing police chief Wang Lijun fled for his life to the U.S. Consulate in Chengdu on Feb. 6, a hidden logic has led from one stunning, new development to another.
Bo Xilai, who at one point was touted as likely stepping up to a spot on the Politburo Permanent Standing Committee, was put under investigation and then relieved of all of his Chinese Communist Party (CCP) posts.
Next, Zhou Yongkang was put under investigation and then stripped of his authority over the powerful Political and Legal Affairs Committee (PLAC). It is only a matter of time until he, too, is removed from all his posts.
As Zhou is taken down through a slow-motion purge, look for other top officials in the bloody-hands faction—the officials that former CCP head Jiang Zemin promoted to implement his persecution of Falun Gong—to be targeted in turn.
But the progress of events will not stop as, one by one, criminals are removed from power. Rather, momentum will build for addressing the true causes of the crisis facing today’s China.
On July 20, 1999, Jiang launched a campaign to eradicate Falun Gong. The economic, legal, moral, and human costs of this persecution have been enormous. The path to China’s future lies in reversing Jiang’s disastrous policies, and thus the key to understanding today’s China lies in understanding the role played by Falun Gong.
When the blind human rights lawyer Chen Guangcheng escaped from his home in Shandong Province, the YouTube video he released documented the extraordinary expenses used to maintain his house arrest, with dozens of local security staff hired solely for the purpose of monitoring and harassing him.
Falun Gong practitioners have for 13 years been monitored and harassed by local security staff hired for only that purpose. In addition, individuals are given sizable cash rewards for informing on practitioners. The expenses, multiplied across the entire nation, are enormous.
And others are hired for other purposes. In some parts of China, individuals are paid to watch utility poles lest a Falun Gong practitioner climb up them, tap into the cable TV signal, and use it to broadcast information about the persecution of Falun Gong.
These kinds of expenses, in which private individuals are hired as independent contractors to harass their fellow citizens, are often off the books.
A few examples give a rough picture of the on-the-budget costs incurred by Jiang’s persecution. According to a report by the World Organization to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong (WOIPFG), expenditures for the Public Security Department, Procuratorial Department, and courts in Qingdao City, Shandong Province, increased 48.6 percent in 2000. In the four years after the persecution began, the executive and legal expenses of Dalian City, Liaoning Province, increased 467 percent.
In order to accommodate the flood of detained Falun Gong practitioners, provinces have engaged in massive prison and labor camp expansions. Money also flows to detain practitioners in brainwashing centers and psychiatric hospitals.
Mountains of money have gone into slandering Falun Gong and deceiving the Chinese people. The money pays for propaganda articles in newspapers and magazines, the publication of books, broadcasts on radio and TV, the production of TV dramas and feature-length movies, and fliers, DVDs, and posters circulated to every corner of China.
Controlling the Internet has cost huge amounts of money. Suppressing Falun Gong quickly became the primary mission for the Golden Shield Project, a comprehensive system for monitoring the Internet. As of 2002, the Golden Shield Project had cost 6 billion yuan (US$ 724.94 million).
In addition, specific software designed to identify Falun Gong-related content in PC networks and other software to monitor Falun Gong content in Web cafes has been developed.
Internet cops have been hired to monitor possible Falun Gong references in real time.
Large amounts have also been spent on controlling Chinese-language media outside China and in funding the monitoring of Falun Gong practitioners outside China.
At present, the publicly disclosed annual expenses of the PLAC, the main Party organ responsible for the persecution of Falun Gong, equals a total of 700 billion yuan (US$111 billion), an amount surpassing the expenses of the military.
It is impossible to calculate all of the costs associated with the persecution. Sources familiar with the situation have told The Epoch Times that during the peak period of 1999–2002, the expenses of the persecution could be considered as the social resources equivalent to half of China’s Gross National Product (GNP)
Continued on the next page: Legal system destroyed …