Monday, November 27, 2023

Xu Zhiyong's Statement at His Final Appeal

 On November 24, 2023, former PRC civil rights lawyer Teng Biao posted the following statement:

In the cases of lawyers #Xuzhiyong and #Dingjiaxi, the Shandong High Court just announced its second-instance judgment, rejecting the appeal and upholding the original judgment. 14 years for Xu and the 12 years for Ding. 

The Council of the Bar Associations in Europe (CCBE) awarded this year’s Human Rights Award to imprisoned human rights lawyers Zou Xingtong, Xu Zhiyong, and Ding Jiaxi. 

Two days from now it will also be the first anniversary of the White Paper Movement.

Dr. Xu Zhiyong said loudly when he arrived at the court that it was almost dawn and the Communist Party only had a few days left. After that he was restrained.
When the judge read out the ruling, Dr. Xu said: Ridiculous!
He also knew he had won the European Bar Association’s Human Rights Award.

#许志永 和 #丁家喜 律师案,山东高院刚刚二审宣判,驳回上诉,维持原判。许14年,丁12年。


Ding Jiaxi's wife wrote that the judgment was subject to a confidentiality agreement, and was not provided to the family (判决书受制于保密协议,不得交给家属).


The same day the following statement was posted on the China Citizens Movement website (English translation mine):

Whither China? —Xu Zhiyong’s Appeal

Published on November 24, 2023 Editor Ling Jiangfeng

You judge us, and the people judge you. The actual appeal is not to the humble Shandong High Court, but to the people and to history. After the epidemic, with the world's economies booming, why are China's industries struggling? After a short rebound, consumption is shrinking, investment is weak, exports are in decline, employment is dire. What is root cause of this exhausting economic crisis? Where is the way out?

The root cause lies in the decade's reversal and collapse of national confidence.

Economic issues are, in essence, political issues.

Advance the State, diminish the people. State-owned enterprises are made bigger and stronger, the living space for private enterprises is made smaller, high-tech private enterprises are made state-owned, and outstanding private entrepreneurs are retired. Everywhere bureaucratic capital and one dominant family compete with the people for profits. Resources, energy, communications, electricity, and even tourism and travel are all profitable industries with state-owned enterprises. Bureaucratic capital dominates and competes with the people for profits. They keep claiming fair competition, but the ideology of the Communist Party is to eliminate private ownership. They keep saying that all subjects are equal, but without democracy, how can officials and citizens be equal?

Distort the market. There are high subsidies for electric vehicles and relentless promotion of 5G communications, the authorities lead banks around by the nose and the stock market is manipulated to death by black hands. The hand of power can do whatever it wants, so where does the market play a decisive role?

Deplete the people's energy. Monopolize land, riase housing prices, and turn people into housing slaves. Monopolize oil, raise oil prices, and turn citizens into car slaves. A truck costs 1,000 yuan a day for gasoline and 1,000 yuan for tolls. Logistics costs are seldom seen in this world. There are central enterprises at the top and city investment at the bottom. The national economy and people's livelihood are monopolized are wielded as blood-sucking tools. How can the people consume when they are heavily in debt?

Make waste with haste. The financial crisis of 4 trillion yuan in 2008 came at just the right time. If the market had been respected and the society had been opened, China's economic growth rate would have been degraded, but more sustainable, until it became a developed country. But economic growth is the only basis for the legitimacy of the Communist Party of China. If you care too much about GDP figures, high-speed rail, highways, and cross-sea bridges, no matter how redundant they are, and no matter how valuable they are, they far exceed 4 trillion yuan every year. Fifteen years of destructive efforts have hollowed out China with fiscal overdrafts and bank deficits, which have been passed on to the people, leaving China heavily in debt.

Three years of prevention and control. On New Year's Day 2020, CCTV refuted the rumors eight times a day. The totalitarian system successfully blocked the news, causing the epidemic to spread globally. Once again its the totalitarian system, and with a single order cities, villages, and countries were sealed off. At first, the overreaction was understandable, but half a year later, the global mortality rate was very low, and the world economy began to recover. Why did it take three years for China to get the message? Such is the curse of dictatorship. Thousands of companies have closed down and hundreds of millions of people have become unemployed, leading to a full-blown crisis today. God willing, the novel corona virus has dealt the final blow to the communist totalitarianism.

When all is said and done, there are no restrictions and power is arbitrary. If Hitler had lived forty more years, his empire would have declined and perished, which is the inevitable fate of a totalitarian system.

The fundamental problem is one of direction.

Through reform and opening up, China has emerged from the abyss of a publicly owned planned economy and moved in the direction of a modern civilization, private property rights, and a free market, bringing about more than thirty years of prosperity and progress. But in the past ten years, we have gone against the grain, holding high Marx, and following the example of Kim Jong Un. The people are confused and their confidence has collapsed.

Where is China going? Is it a market economy or a planned economy? Is it democracy and freedom or dictatorship? Is it the United States or North Korea? Is it a broad road or a cliff? Should we thrive with the tide or perish against it?

China has a clear future with true democracy, multi-party competition, universal suffrage, independent judiciary, and freedom of speech. In a true market economy, private property rights are the main body, and the market determines resource allocation. It is a universal trend of human civilization, and China cannot be an exception.

Of course China has its own characteristics, this is a fact common to every nation. The United States has a president, Japan has an emperor, and India has a prime minister. However, the four fundamental principles of the democratic system are everywhere the same. Democracy does not distinguish between doctrines, between East and West, only between truth and falsehood. There is competition among multiple parties and the people have choices. This is true democracy. One candidate getting 100% of the votes is fake democracy. What we oppose is not so-called socialist democracy, but fake democracy. What we pursue is not so-called capitalist democracy, but true democracy.

The modern civilization of the Chinese nation is by no means a combination of Marxism-Leninism and imperial power, or Western dross contaminating Chinese dross. Rather, it is scientific democracy supported by benevolence, justice, propriety, trustworthiness, and Western civilization complementing Chinese civilization. After the end of autocracy, a China that is free and democratic with 1.4 billion people will burst out with passion and vitality, creating the most advanced technology, the most prosperous economy, and the most splendid culture in the world. A glorious China will lead a new era of human civilization.

Originally, they had the right direction, privatizing state-owned enterprises that competed with the people, gradually withdrawing their power over the market and opening up democratic elections. The general direction was correct, and the people  regained hope and confidence.

Twenty years ago, I made sincere suggestions, and ten years ago, I spoke out loudly. But it seems that China is going further and further in the wrong direction. Advocating for people to conduct themselves as true citizens is punished with severe sentences, and calling for active participation in the election of National People's Congress deputies can also be used as evidence of guilt. All democratic sprouts have been strangled, and all room for improvement has been blocked. Their destiny and role is to be the last generation of totalitarianism, and no one can stop them from running towards the cliff.

Economic collapse. State-owned enterprises have monopolized people's livelihood, distorted the market with the help of power, and drained the national treasury. The Xiongan New Area is riding a tiger, and the Belt and Road Initiative has yielded no gains. Three years of harsh epidemic prevention and control and a series of major and continuous wrong decisions have led to economic collapse. But they could not help themselves, and continued to make waste in their haste and  and to quench their thirst with poison.

Political regression. Village-level democracy has been reduced to a Party monopoly, separation between the government and the Party has been reduced to comprehensive Party leadership, and collective leadership has been reduced to a one-man dictatorship. Political regression has been comprehensive, totalitarianism continues to expand, stability maintenance continues to swell, and these mountains are crushing China.

Cultural decay. Cultural prosperity is not about digging ancient tombs and building monuments, but about creating splendid culture to share with mankind. Freedom is the lifeblood of culture. The Communist Party regards freedom as its enemy. Once upon a time, this Western evil spirit took as its mission the destruction of Chinese culture, destroying the mausoleum of Emperor Yan, digging up the tomb of Confucius and disinterring China's ancestors. Nowadays, its layers of censorship are like a dismemberment, and film, television, art, and culture are on the verge of death.

Societal suffocation. There can be no self-confidence without democratic elections. The closer you come to the end of the line, the more sensitive you become, the more taboos you have. Actors, Internet celebrities, writers, singers, etc. are all blocked for the slightest infractions. Everyone lives in fear, like a thousands of horses standing lifeless and mute, and the Chinese nation is gradually losing its vitality to the point that it is practically a zombie.

Marxism elevated. A ghost, a ghost wandering aimlessly through Europe, a virulent infectious disease, was transmitted to China through Soviet Russia, bringing with it a huge tragedy of more than 30 million people starving to death, and a decade of catastrophe that destroyed Chinese culture. In the twentieth century it brought unprecedented disasters to mankind, and it still brings endless slavery, famine and suffering to the North Korean people. Is it possible for a dystopian doctrine, a doctrine of total failure, to be held up as a model for all mankind?

Those who were born from the Cultural Revolution are now obsessed with a return to the Cultural Revolution. Woe to China!

The Constitution amended. Can anyone be so virtuous as to be a dictator for life? The fate of the country and the nation depends upon a single person, and the sages are still worried, so what is wrong with this blockhead? In the past, there were changes of leadership every ten years, and even though it was a single party, there remained a glimmer of hope. Now there is endless darkness and complete despair. One person's dictatorship has reversed course for ten years, causing hundreds of industries to wither and become trapped in innumerable difficulties. The evil spirit of Marxism-Leninism has poisoned China and gone against the tide of the times, making people resentful and angry. An emperor has once again ascended the throne, and the sky is filled with yellow sand. Hebei, Beijing, and Tianjin are in hot water, suppressing all efforts and oppressing people's livelihoods. All under heaven is confusion and worry, and there is no light at the end of the tunnel. The country is misled by a dictator, such is the peril facing China!

China needs a revolution.

Revolution in China is inevitable. Only revolution can destroy autocracy, only revolution can save China, only revolution can bring democracy and freedom, only revolution can bring fairness and justice, only revolution can bring human dignity, and only revolution can bring the rebirth of China. Only when there is no Communist Party will there be a New China.

Not a violent revolution. If the people are unarmed, violence will hardly bear the fruits of freedom. When the communist regimes in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe collapsed, there were no violent revolutions, only peaceful civil revolutions, without exception.

In August 1991, the conservative forces of the Soviet Communist Party launched a coup, and troops took to the streets of Moscow. However, there was no strongman in the ruling group, and the military hesitated and waited. Three days later, the Communist Party collapsed and the democrats won. At the last moment of the end of communist totalitarianism, the only mission and role of the military was to wait and see.

Revolutions are fueled by anger. But the color of the raging flames is not hatred but love. Drive out the evil spirit of Marxism and Lenin, save our Chinese compatriots, redeem every Chinese, do not hate any individual, do not attack others, do not destroy property, and do not give excuses for brutal violence and suppression. The greater power is ours, and it is not hate, but love.

China will not fall apart. The provinces in the mainland are highly integrated and have a deep-rooted national identity, but some border areas have deep grievances. During the transformation, our philosophy is clear and firm: freedom is the direction, and all regions will have democratic autonomy. Justice must be defended and no violence will be allowed. Negotiate the future peacefully and heal wounds with love.

China will not become turbulent and disorderly. Soviet Russia was undergoing political transformation, and its economy and society were unprepared. China has had a market economy for 40 years and has gradually matured forces yearning for freedom and democracy. Massive rallies and marches will assemble, the Communist Party will disappear, and within a few months a referendum and a constitutional election will be held.

The 1989 Tiananmen democracy movement failed. At that time, the ruling group had a charismatic strongman, and the vast majority of the military obeyed. The democrats had no leader, and lacked direction and rhythm. The international community still has hope for China's reform and opening up. Social conditions are not yet mature, as the people can still share the dividends of reform and opening up.

Today, there is no strongman in the ruling group. At this turning point in history, soldiers will hesitate and wait and see. Should they follow him? It will be sufficient to remain on the sidelines. The democrats have a mature leadership team, a clear direction, and a feasible path. The international community has clearly seen the nature of the CPC, and the Cold War has resumed. Social conditions have matured. In these last days of totalitarianism there is depression, unemployment, poverty, despair, people's resentment is boiling, and the tinder lies everywhere. No one knows when, where ,or which spark will ignite the revolution, but that spark will definitely appear.

My compatriots, the dawn in the east is about to break through the sky, the earth's fire is rushing, and the lava is gathering. China will not perish in silence, but will explode from silence.

The most precious thing is courage.

The courage to tell the truth, the courage to defend freedom, the courage to go to jail, the courage to take to the streets.

Thanks to the lone brave man Peng Lifa for coming forward. In the darkest hour before the dawn, the smoke column on the Sitong Bridge was a dazzling light. Thousands of citizens have been awakened, and you never were, and never will be, alone.

Thank you young students. Thirty-three years later, the Chinese nation has heard your cry again. Upon the white paper you held up will eventually be written a vast history. To the girl holding a sign at the door of the Peking University cafeteria, thank you. I am proud to have a classmate like you. Thirty-four years later, the Chinese nation is once again placing its hope in you. Peking University, your soul has returned!

Thank you to our democratic predecessors, from the Democracy Wall in 1979 to Tiananmen in 1989 and then to the Democratic Party in 1998. Generations of people with lofty ideals and benevolence hold high the banner of democracy and freedom. At that time, you needed more courage. Wei Jingsheng, Qin Yongmin, Liu Xianbin . . . serving out so many years in prison, paying such a price for China to be reborn? I'm honored to join you.

Thank you Christians. For decades, you have silently preached the love of Christ in this land of suffering, injustice, and anxiety. I once witnessed the prayers in the heavy snow at the entrance of Haidian Park when Shouwang Church was being persecuted. Both the Haotian God worshiped by the Chinese ancestors is like Jehovah, they are both the one true God of mankind.

Thank you to the practitioners of truthfulness, kindness, and patience. In December 2021, Mr. Liu Jinguo in the cell next to mine was shackled and fixed to the bed board for a month because of his hunger strike. For more than two decades, the suffering all of you have endured is shocking, but it has enriched the history of the Chinese nation.

Thank you to all those who fight for freedom, democracy, justice, and dignity. Under autocracy, no matter how humiliating it is, the majority remain silent. However, tens of thousands of brave Chinese people have still stood up and said no to power. Their posts were deleted, their accounts were blocked, and they were thrown into black jails, detained, and imprisoned. It is these brave people who have created the unyielding backbone of China.

Thank you to the citizens who have walked with me over the past twenty years. Have the courage to resist and the wisdom to build a glorious China of freedom, justice, and love. One day, every Chinese will become a true citizen and enjoy universal freedoms such as freedom of speech and the right to vote. That will be a China that truly belongs to the people, our lifelong dream and struggle.

My fellow citizens,

One hundred and twelve years ago, the Revolution of 1911 overthrew the Manchu Dynasty and established the Republic of China, Asia's first republic. Unfortunately, after decades of internal and external troubles, the Republic of China fell and autocracy returned. Another seventy years have passed. The political landscape of the world has been turned upside down. The tide of democracy has swept across the world, and dictatorial regimes have come to an end. Even Africa has had universal suffrage for many years. My ancestral land, however, remains under the dictatorship of one party and one man. It is this which is truly the Chinese nation's greatest shame.

The people of China live a life of suffocation.

There was a time when pots and pans were melted to make steel and the fields were left barren. During three years of good weather more than 30 million people died of starvation. Now this unprecedented famine is gently brushed away by the textbooks as "three years of natural disasters." During the great revolution in Chinese culture, countless cultural relics were destroyed. Ask for instructions in the morning and report in the evening, dance the loyalty dance, and raise loyalty pigs. Amid great terror, the whole country went insane.

There was a time when "unauthorized birth strike teams" roamed the land. When a woman was seven or eight months pregnant, a team of men would be forcibly pushed her to the ground and drag her to the backyard of the county hospital. They injected poison into the child's head. If the child was still alive after birth it was tossed into a nearby  large pot of boiling water. For forty years, thousands of Chinese mothers have watched their children being brutally killed, crying without tears and wailing silently.

The grave removal movement has arrived, and ancestral graves have been bulldozed, and the dead who have been laid to rest in their graves have been forcibly disinterred. Except for high-ranking officials, everyone's destination is a small half-meter square grid, densely packed and without dignity.

An environmental storm has arrived, and the coldest month of winter, heating stoves are forcibly dragged away. Thousands of private enterprises are ordered to close down. For those have spent most of their lives struggling and lose everything there is no recourse to the law.

The epidemic has arrived, and with one order they silenced the doctors and CCTV "refuted the rumors." The whole country was rendered speechless, and with another order cities, villages, and countries were locked down. Work, life, and dreams, everything was shattered by idiotic prohibitions.

Another order was given, and without any preparation, everyone was suddenly released. One billion people were unable to find medicine, and a long queue formed in front of the funeral parlor.

A plane crashes, and no one is qualified to know the truth, let alone reflect on it. There is a flood, and no one is qualified to know how many people lost their lives. If you want to donate to earthquake-stricken areas, you can only donate to a few government-run organizations such as the Cross Society, and you are not eligible to check the whereabouts of the donations. Discussing national affairs already leaves you on the verge of breaking the law. Praise the emperor's new clothes loudly, even though everyone knows that he has no clothes on. Facing unbearable injustice I sought to petition. I turned off my mobile phone and didn't take the train. I was like a guerrilla who snuck into the imperial capital, only to be caught in front of the National Bureau of Petitions and Calls.

People are political animals. We are not qualified, however, to live a normal human life, because without elections, the country does not belong to the people, but rather to the Communist Party. We are still on our knees with pigtails on the back of our heads. Even if in the past few years one could say that  we have been able to have just enough to eat to console ourselves like pigs, today even that proposition has become questionable. When will the time come when we no longer endure this?

What kind of China should we leave for future generations? Let them continue to kneel as slaves, or should we step forward bravely today?

This absurd nation, this shameful nation, this nation where power runs rampant, this nation where humanity is lost, this nation where the dictator is aloof and the people are as humble as ants, this nation of sadness, numbness, despair and sinking into the abyss of hell. This nation is my ancestral home. I will devote all my life to saving her, saving my Chinese nation, and ushering in the glorious rebirth of Chinese civilization.

The curtain has already opened on an era of greatness. In the darkest hour, dawn is approaching. When despair lies flat, passion must fly. This is our era, the era of citizens, the era of the people. Say goodbye to the ghost of communism, say goodbye to the millennium of autocracy, and welcome in the civil revolution. This is the most magnificent chapter in human history. Compatriots, are you ready?

Citizen Xu Zhiyong
August 2023 


发表于 2023年11月24日 编辑 凌江峰

























































公民 许志永
本文发布在 12.26公民案, 公民立场, 本站首发, 许志永. 收藏 永久链接.

Translation: Xu Zhiyong's Statement in His Own Defense

 Source: China Digital Times: On April 10, 2023, Xu Zhiyong, a well-known human rights de...