Nobel Peace Prize For Dissident. Chinese Government Furious
For most governments, an award of a Nobel Peace Prize for one of their citizens would be cause for celebration. Not so with China and the case of prisoner Liu Xiaobo, a democracy and human rights activist who has called for an opening up of the Chinese political system.
In fact, the government is so angry about this award that they've sent Liu's wife to prison to keep her away from news reporters. They also cut the television news feed when CNN reporters started reporting on the award. Needless, to say, this kind of proves Xiaobo's point, doesn't it?
For the record, this is how the Chinese goverment has treated their Nobel prize winner thus far:
June 1989 to January 1991. Charged with spreading messages to instigate counterrevolutionary behavior. Imprisoned in one of China's most well-known maximum security prisons, Qincheng Prison, and discharged when he signed a "letter of repentance."
May 1995 - January 1996. Charged with being involved in democracy and human rights movement, voicing publicly the need to redress mistakes. Released after being jailed for six months.
October 1996 - October 1999 Charged with disturbing the social order. Jailed in a labor education camp for three years. During this time, he married Liu Xia.
December 2009- 2020 Charged with spreading a message to subvert the country and authority (EDITOR'S NOTE: Liu was calling for freedom of speech and multiparty elections). Sentenced for 11 years and deprived of all political rights for two years.
Acting entirely in character, the Chinese government is now suggesting that trade and diplomatic ties with Norway may be affected. The Nobel Committee is not a Norwegian government agency. Nonetheless, it is impossible for the Chinese government to conceive of an independent organization with such international clout operating without government oversight. So of course, this travesty is merely an example of Norway's neocon imperialist plans for domination of China and the world. Naturally.
Where is the international condemnation of a government that jails a democracy activist for the crime of essentially arguing that jailing democracy activists is wrong? China is said to be "livid" over this development. Well, we ought to be, too. But from a different perspective.
Jonathon Narvey is the Editor of The Propagandist.