LinkedIn tracking pixel

John Lenczowski discusses human rights abuses in China

John Lenczowski speaks on Capitol Hill, December 2018

On December 4, IWP Founder and President Dr. John Lenczowski participated in a forum on “Deteriorating Human Rights and Tuidang Movement in China” in advance of Human Rights Day on December 10.

In his remarks, Dr. Lenczowski noted that the current strategic direction of China has at its core the fact that the regime is illegitimate and therefore fears its own people. This fear leads to a massive security problem, which China works to solve through such measures as the Laogai labor camps, various persecutions, and controlling the thoughts and speech of its people.

Dr. Lenczowski noted two ways to fight against this sort of regime. One is to avoid participating in the Party or in telling its lies. This idea is at the center of the Tuidang Movement in China, in which people have been withdrawing from the Communist Party. Another way that Dr. Lenczowski mentioned to fight against this system is to bear moral witness by telling the truth about the regime. This moral witness may give courage to the people of China, who will know that they are not alone.

Speeches and letters from several Congressmen were presented during the forum, including Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, Congressman Steve King, and Congressman Chris Smith. Several Falun Gong practitioners who were persecuted in China and who managed to escape also testified.

A video of the event may be found here and below. Dr. Lenczowski’s remarks begin around 40:10.

A transcript of Dr. Lenczowski’s remarks may be found below.



I would like to thank all of you for coming here today to Commemorate Human Rights Day and to bear moral witness. I want to commend the leaders of the Tuidang movement and all those who have participated in it in an effort to disassociate themselves with organized evil.

I have a record of having worked, as Congressman Rohrabacher said, during the Cold War against Soviet communism. I always thought it was a mistake for us to believe that we could turn Communist China against the Soviet communists in some kind of a 19th century balance-of-power policy, which ended up, in my view, creating a moral confusion, saying that there were bad communists in the Soviet Union and good communists in China, which, I think, has turned out to be a conceptual problem that has produced really a strategic disaster for the United States and the world, and, in a way, a spiritual abandonment of so many people in China.

The former Soviet human rights activist Andrei Saharov who was the inventor of the Soviet H Bomb, but he turned into a human rights activist, said that the Soviet Communist Party would never have peace with the West until it could have peace with its own people. And that means respecting and defending their human rights.

And so right now we are seeing the rise of tensions between Communist China and the United States and between Communist China and many of its neighbors in East Asia. We are seeing a rising colonialist foreign policy by China, and the strategic direction – the vast military buildup, the huge espionage operation, the intellectual property theft – all of this is intimately related to the fundamental nature of that regime. And of course, its expansionistic and really imperialistic policy is one that is directly related to the central fact of political life in China-which is the illegitimacy of the regime.

Nobody in China gave their consent that this regime should be governing them.

And when you are an illegitimate regime, you have a fundamental problem – and that is fear of your own people. It’s a massive internal security problem. And so everything, from the system of informants, the Laogai, the various different types of punishments, the persecutions, everything that we have been hearing about today… the organ harvesting, and so on… all of this is part of an internal security system to protect the prerequisites of power and wealth of the gang that is in charge.

One of the key elements of all of this system is thought control and speech control. All sorts of people in the United States and the West somehow deny that China is still a communist country and believe that the ideology is dead. Whether people believe in all of the elements of the Marxist-Leninist with Maoist or other Chinese characteristics ideology – whether they believe in it fully or not – that ideology continues to be operational within the system, because it is the essential instrument of thought control. It sets the standard against which deviationism is measured, and when journalists stray from the official Party line, they are sent to ideological reeducation schools in order to get them back into a state of conformity.

And, of course, this thought control and speech control is what ultimately makes the regime a totalitarian regime. This strategy is related to the regime’s psychological strategy – which is basically to induce the people into a state of fear and despair and futile resignation. When there is this kind of atmosphere of fear, and you don’t know who is an informant and who it is who is spying upon you and ready to turn you in to the authorities so that you can be arrested and undergo the terrible tortures that our witnesses here before me were testifying to, you become atomized. This is the atomization of society, where people are separated from one another, to the extent that they don’t trust anyone else, and they are all alone.

How do you fight against this?

I submit that there are two things. One is that, in order to fight the system of thought control and speech control, one has to do what the dissidents in the old Soviet bloc developed as a methodology. This was to refuse to repeat any of the lies of the regime. And to refuse to do this one day at a time. Just try to go through one day and not repeat any of the official lies of the regime. And then try to do it the next day, and then try to do it the next day. The more people who refuse to participate in the official lies of the regime – this is one of those ways of quitting the Party.

The second thing that one can do here – of course – is to bear moral witness. That means telling the truth about what is going on. Inside the Chinese Communist regime, it is very difficult to do that. It remains for us on the outside to try to tell that truth and to try to convey it particularly through the Voice of America and Radio Free Asia and other broadcasting methods and other communications methods.

The suffering people of China, the Falun Gong movement, the different religious movements within China, are not alone. Because when you feel as though you are all alone, you feel as though you are now in a state of despair and a state of futile resignation.

The Communist Party is like a coral reef which is composed of millions of tiny organisms. It exists because the organisms continue to cling to one another, and they do so out of political opportunism, financial opportunism, or whatever. If they gave a party and nobody came, then there wouldn’t be any party. If there is a Communist Party and nobody joins, there will be no Communist Party. I believe it is our role to appeal to the consciences of those people who are in that Party, like the Uighur doctor who couldn’t live with himself — who was haunted — because that haunting is ultimately listening to the voice of conscience that is there on the human heart that tells you whether you are doing the right thing or the wrong thing, no matter what the Communist Party law says.

So it is our duty to bear moral witness so that people won’t feel alone and that ultimately they may gain courage. And maybe there will be another day when millions of people will take to the streets in protest of this regime and its evils, and maybe the Party will decide that it has too much to fear from a people who are rising up against them.

I just want to thank you all for you bearing moral witness. I want to thank those who were testifying here beforehand for their incredible courage, and I wish you all many of God’s blessings. Thank you very much.

John Lenczowski
December 4, 2018