In PRC, only liars like Wen survive

Former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein was captured recently without resisting. This surprised Westerners because it did not fit with his reputation for brutality. It shocked Arabs because some of them viewed him as a hero.

By Cao Chang-ching 曹長青
The Taipei Times
Dec 31, 2003

Former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein was captured recently without resisting. This surprised Westerners because it did not fit with his reputation for brutality. It shocked Arabs because some of them viewed him as a hero.

Saddam turned out to be a coward, cowering like a rat in a hole, and he gave up as soon as he saw US soldiers.

No dictator is a hero. They manage to appear mighty only because the media in their countries cannot reveal their ugliness. State-owned newspapers and TV stations glorify dictators every day.

This is exactly what is going on in today's China. According to the media reports that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) controls, all those in power are heroes and wise leaders.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's (溫家寶) recent US visit highlights this point. All the reports delivered by the CCP's propaganda tools portrayed Wen as friendly to the public, and wise and brilliant as well. At a welcome party organized by China's consulate in Washington, some people shouted, "Premier Wen is extremely gifted."

But in reality, all Wen does is repeat empty words formulated by the CCP, without sincerity or truthfulness.

Wen told at least three lies while he was in the US.

First, at a banquet held by the National Committee on US-China Relations on the day he met US President George W. Bush, Wen said that he "had to face the bayonets of fascist aggressors" when he was a child.

Wen is 61, which means that he was born in 1942. He was only three years old when Japan surrendered in 1945. How can he remember what happened when he was three? Isn't it more than clear that what he said is an implausible lie?

How could it be possible that his mother held her three-year-old child up to Japanese bayonets? Is this logical?

Now to the second lie. Wen probably did some homework before he flew to the US and found out that Americans often say, "When I was a kid, my mom said..." or "When I was young, my father taught me to..."

Therefore, Wen mentioned his family background in the opening remarks of a speech he delivered in the US.

He said that "I am a very ordinary person ... When I was very young, my mother told me that I should treat people with truthfulness, sincerity, cordiality and devotion (真實, 真情, 真摯, 真切)."

Some have commented that such sensational remarks are rare among China's high-ranking officials. But if Wen were sincere in making his remarks, it would not matter how sensational they were.

But did Wen's mother really say "truthfulness, sincerity, cordiality and devotion?" When talking to their children, mothers tend to use words that are simple, colloquial and easy to remember, not formal and hard-to-pronounce words. The words that Wen used are nothing like the words that mothers say to their children.

More importantly, Wen was only seven when the CCP gained control of the government in 1949. Ever since elementary school, he has lived under communist rule. At that time, children in China were taught what the "party mother" said and what then party chairman Mao Zedong (毛澤東) taught. It is extremely rare for anyone who grew up in China to proudly declare what their mothers taught them and how their fathers influenced them.

Did Wen ever have an adolescence during which he could speak sincere words or when he was taught to tell the truth? Did he or his mother dare do that?

Since he was a child, Wen has lived in a society in which only liars can survive. If he had dared tell the truth over the course of his life, could he have become China's premier?

Because he has climbed so high in a society full of lies, he has lost the ability to tell the difference between truth and lies. It is nonsense for Wen to praise the value of "truthfulness."

Third, when Wen discussed the Taiwan issue, he cited a line by a famous Taiwanese poet. The poet expressed how much he missed Taiwan and cared about its people by saying that the curved, shallow Taiwan Strait is a site of nostalgia.

While the two lies mentioned above only become obvious when looked at with common sense and logic, this third one is immediately transparent. Who would aim 500 missiles at Taiwan and then say "I feel deep nostalgia for you"?

Do Chinese people always convey nostalgia with missiles?

Think about the scenario in which a husband holds five meat cleavers to his wife's neck and gently says how much he misses her. Give me a break! Even a stage play would not contain such a scene.

Russian writer Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn said that communist countries are rife with lies; lies dominate and cover up everything in such countries. Wen's generation grew up in a typical communist system and now he is a core member of a system ruled by lies. It is not surprising that Wen tells lies.

Solzhenitsyn said that only by stopping lying can one free oneself from the shackles of the communist system. But his statement should be reversed -- only by breaking up the communist system can one stop lying.

Cao Chang-ching is a writer and journalist based in New York.

Translated by Jackie Lin

Published on TaipeiTimes

2003-12-31 (轉載請指明出處)

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