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Uighur genocide

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Uighur prisoners in a Chinese "re-education camp".
I thought that I would rather die than go through this torture and begged them to kill me. The authorities put a helmet-like thing on my head, and each time I was electrocuted, my whole body would shake violently and I would feel the pain in my veins. I don’t remember the rest. White foam came out of my mouth, and I began to lose consciousness. The last word I heard them saying is that you being a Uighur is a crime.
—Mihrigul Tursun, testimony to the US Congress.[1][2]


Inventing "The Other"
Islamophobia
200px-Icon islamophobia.png
Fear And Loathing

Since 2017, government authorities in China have implemented oppressive policies against the Uighur populationWikipedia[note 1] in the province of Xinjiang. Since then, accusations that authorities in China are committing cultural genocide against the Uighurs have been piling up.[3][4] Under the leadership of Chen Quanguo,Wikipedia Xinjiang has become a surveillance state.[note 2] Using terrorism, extremism, and separatismWikipedia as justifications, up to a million or more were rounded up and put into "re-education camps" concentration camps.[5] In September 2020, a group of 23 organizations sent a letter to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) urging them to launch an investigation into crimes against humanity and genocide in Xinjiang.[6] The situation has been compared to previous genocides like the Stolen Generations,Wikipedia the American Indian genocides, and the Holocaust.[7]

Genocide Watch - an organization based on tracking and preventing genocide around the world - has issued a Genocide Warning for China and lists it at Stage 8 (Persecution) of the Ten Stages of Genocide.[8] This was upgraded to a Genocide Emergency and Stage 9 (Extermination) in 2020, based on of forced sterilization and forcible transfer of children.[9]

Backgrounds[edit]

Flag of East Turkestan, still associated with the Xinjiang independence movement.

The Xinjiang conflictWikipedia dates back centuries to the Qing Dynasty, which created the entity of Xinjiang in 1884 by merging two distinctively separate entities, composing of the northern Dzungaria, mostly inhabited by the Mongol Buddhist Oirats, and the southern Tarim Basin, mostly inhabited by the Turkic Muslim Uighurs. Centuries earlier, the Qing Emperors fought a series of wars against the Oirats, committed genocide, and dwindled their population, and resettled the region with Han, Hui, Manchus, and Uighurs. Such migrations and resettlement of people brought further problems over ethnic identity, as the Uighurs believe that they are native to the region for thousands of years, while the Han Chinese argued that the Chinese had long controlled the region before the ancestors of the Uighurs arrived in the 9th century.[10]

After the Qing Dynasty fell, the region was control by a series of warlords, which eventual led to the establishment of the First East Turkestan RepublicWikipedia in 1933 on the outskirts of Tarim Basin, before it overthrown by Soviet warlord Sheng Shicai in 1934. Sheng, being a protege of Joseph Stalin, established a pro-Soviet regime and instituted a series of purges. Sheng was also influenced by the Soviet nationality policy and also introduced some arbitrary ethnic divisions,[11] and officially using the term Uighur to described different Turkic Muslim groups[note 3][12] Sheng also conflicted with the rival Ma clique backed by the Hui Muslims and the Kuomintang government, and a smaller ethnic conflict between the Hui and Uighurs exist to this day.

Sheng eventually turned against the USSR after World War II ocurred and the Soviets turned their attention elsewhere, and attempted to reconcile with the KMT regime, which responded by disposing of Sheng. The Soviets helped found the Second East Turkestan RepublicWikipedia in northern Dzungaria in 1944, which fought against the KMTWikipedia, before being incorporated into Communist China in 1949 in the Chinese Civil War, and the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR) was established in 1955. It's worth noting that the Chairmen of XUAR (governors) are mostly filled by Uighurs, while the CCP Secretaries, which holds greater political power, are usually filled by Han Chinese.

The region oversaw a population decline during the late 1950s as a result of the disastrous Great Leap ForwardWikipedia}. As a result of the Sino-Soviet splitWikipedia, the Soviets funded several Uighur separatist groups which heavily promoted Uighur nationalism such as the East Turkestan People's Revolutionary PartyWikipedia[13] and encouraged emigration to the Kazakh SSR and revolts against the CCP.[14] As a response, the CCP relocated non-Han groups from the border region as a defense strategy, and replaced them with Han migrants, and by the 1970s, Han migration in Xinjiang drastically increased from 7% to 40%[15] In fear of Soviet encirclement and earlier Soviet support of Uighur separatism, the Chinese returned the favor in the Soviet-Afghanistan War by hosting Afghan Mujahideen training camps in Xinjiang [16]

With the fall of the USSR, secular Uighur independence movements were gradually replaced by those influenced by Islamism, such as East Turkestan Islamic Movement, (now called Turkistan Islamic PartyWikipedia).[17] They were involved in a series of terrorist attacks during the 1990s and 2000s, and founded training camps in Afghanistan and later Syria.

The July 2009 Ürümqi riotsWikipedia proved to be a turning point for CCP policy in the region. It began as a protest over treatment of Uighur migration workers but quickly turned into ethnic riots against Han and Hui civilians, before it was suppressed by military police. With the ascension of Xi Jinping in 2012, there is a growing presence of the military in the region, and the Strike Hard Campaign Against Violent TerrorismWikipedia campaign was launched, further eroding the civil liberties of the Uighurs, such as banning hijabs and long beards. This supposedly due to growing concerns over foreign jihadists returning from the Syrian Civil War and several terrorist attacks by the Turkestan Islamic Party, [18] but often Uighurs are scapegoated by police and Han civilians for crimes committed by non-Uighur Turkic peoples such as Kazakhs and Uzbeks. Another campaign was the Civil Servant-Family Pair UpWikipedia, which encouraged Uighurs to lodge with CCP cadres in order to instill party propaganda, and over a million people have done so. [19]

It's worth noting that many of the religious restrictions imposed upon the Uighurs do not apply to the Hui Muslims, who are better integrated into Chinese society and often seen by the party as a model minorityWikipedia,[20] and in turn, the Hui are generally more supportive of CCP policies. The old ethnic conflict dating back to days of the Ma clique doesn't help matters.

Evidence[edit]

Chinese state security patrol in Urumqi.

Here is a list of evidence of human rights abuses in Xinjiang.

Arbitrary detention[edit]

Uighurs are sent into the camps if they "[are] on the edge of committing a crime".[21] They are also sent to the camps for other reasons like downloading a video that said Uighurs who joined the communist party were not true Muslims, taking part in "illegal" Qur'an classes, "forcing" their parents to pray, watching an anti-Chinese video, and downloading a video to remind them to pray daily.[22]

Unfair trials[edit]

Uighur "terrorists" were given a list of 70 crimes (usually minor infractions) to pick from and admit to them. They were not given a lawyer at all during their trial. If they did not pick their crime, they would stay in a detention center forever. Although the evidence is testimony-based, all of the testimonies confirm each other.[23]

Karakax list[edit]

The Karakax list is an extremely detailed list of people who were interned in the camps and the reasons why.[24] These Uighurs have been interned for reasons such as wearing a hijab, travelling, accessing foreign websites, and applying for a passport, having too many children, born after 1990, and relatives living abroad.[25][26] The Karakax list is one of the strongest pieces of evidence that proves China is detaining Uighurs based on religion, culture, and having too many children. However, Chinese Communist Party (CCP) propaganda mouthpiece Global Times attempts to deny the authenticity of the document while simultaneously justifying it.[27] Apart from that, the authenticity of the document has been confirmed by Rian Thum, and Uighur whistleblowers like Abduweli Ayup have confirmed it too.

Evidence of at least one million Uighurs in camps[edit]

Chen QuanguoWikipedia, CCP Secretary of Xinjiang and architect of the concentration camp policy.

This is a smoking gun because it proves that the majority of detainees are not terrorists. If there were really 1 million terrorists, the Chinese government would have an extremely hard time dealing with them.[note 4]There is a lot of evidence that there are at least one million Uighurs in these camps:

  • The NGO China Human Rights Defenders has interviewed 8 Uighurs from 8 different villagers, asking them for an estimate of the number of detainees in each village. The detention rates ranged from 8-20%, and the average was 12.8% across these 8 villages. The numbers that the interviewees gave were similar to the numbers on official Chinese government documents.[28] In the end, they conservatively made the estimate of a 10% detention rate. Afterwards, they extrapolated this detention rate to the entire Uighur population of ca. 10 million people.[29] However, webshites like The Grayzone strawman their argument by conveniently omitting that each of the villagers came from a different village. They also mention that they are funded by the National Endowment for Democracy,Wikipedia an American NGO, and this somehow invalidates their research.[30]
  • German researcher Adrian Zenz also came to this conclusion. Firstly, he found out that 892,000 people in 68 different counties were imprisoned. This number has come from a Chinese government official, and he also gave it to Istiqlal TV.[31][note 5] He realised that a lot of major population centers are missing from the data. Then, he applied the detention rate of 12.3% in minority-majority areas.
  • In China's white papers, they claimed that the "regional government organised 'employment-oriented training' and labour skills for nearly 1.3 million workers a year from 2014 to 2019". Some believe that these are Xinjiang's re-education camps as they have used similar terminology to describe them.[32][note 6]
  • There are at least 94 confirmed re-education camps, meaning that at least 10 thousand people are in each camp.[34]However, Buzzfeed found out that the Chinese government has built 260 re-education camps since 2017.[35]
  • There is evidence that a lot of people are put in these camps. An AFP study found out that the vocational education bureau in Hotan County ordered 194,000 Chinese language practice books and 11,310 pairs of shoes.[36][note 7]
  • Apart from that, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute analysed 28 facilities and found out that they occupy over 2.7 million square meters of space.[37] Zenz then found out that the estimated occupancy density is 1.5-2 detainees/sq meter.[38]
  • The number of arrests in Xinjiang has drastically increased by 700% in 2016-2017. It accounted for 21% of China's total arrests.[39]
  • BBC analysed satellite images and found out that 44 of them had the potential to be re-education camps. One of the camps in Dabancheng had the potential to house at least 11,000 detainees and at most 130,000 detainees. The low estimate assumes that each person has his/her own room, and the high estimate assumes that there are dormitories instead of individual rooms.[40]
  • According to an interview with a police officer by Radio Free Asia, 1 in 6 Uighurs, or 16% of Uighurs, are held in camps in Onsu County.[41]
  • Quartz has analysed them and found the methodologies to be credible.[42]
  • The Chinese government has not directly given its own estimate of the number of Uighurs in the camps. This is extremely important evidence because it shows that China is unwilling to actively refute the arguments.

Population control[edit]

Occupation of homes[edit]

Now that you got Uighurs in camps, how do you fill up the families? Simple, get people to occupy their homes![43]They were called "relatives", and their job is twofold. First, to indoctrinate the Uighur households. Second, to keep watch over every private detail they can of everyone's home life, including their behavior. For example, if a Uighur greets someone with the Arabic phrase Assalamu alaykum., reading the Qu'ran, praying on Friday or fasting during Ramadan, these need to be jotted down in their notebook. Other things to take note of include long beards.

Sexual abuse[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Rape

Chinese officials have been abusing the situation to force Uighur women to share their beds.[44] Of course, the officials' stances are that this is all perfectly normal and no officials have been taking advantage of the women. Besides, it's not as if the officials themselves have access to a system that can make people who complain too loudly simply disappear, such as, say, a number of giant concentration camps.

More disturbingly, many women are being forced into marriages with some of these officials.[45] Women who refuse are either are sent to the camps, or have other members of their families sent to the camps. Essentially, the Uighurs will cease to be a distinct ethnic group, and it's unlikely the children raised in such conditions will be given any education on their non-Chinese heritage.

Forced abortions/sterilizations[edit]

Guma (Pishan) County 2019 family planning targets for birth prevention measures among pastoralist and farming populations.[46][47]

China has lowered the birth rates of the Uighur population through sterilizations, forced abortions, and forced birth control.[48] Pregnancy checks are now routine, which is a major privacy violation. Refusal to comply with any of this may result in being sent for "re-education". A family having too many children is another reason for being sent away, which is basically any more than two kids per family. Apart from that, there have been testimonies from former detainees that they have undergone forced sterilization. If these testimonies turn out to be true, this proves that there is a genocide taking place.[49] Finally, a doctor has confirmed that a Uighur refugee has been forcibly sterilized.[50]

A handful of Chinese documents suggest that the Chinese government is using birth prevention on the Uighurs. The document on the right shows the CCP attempting to suppress Uighur birth rates in pastoralist and farming populations.[47]

Note: These activities should not be separated from the legacy of China's one-child policy. The poorly managed social engineering policy resulted in Chinese women getting sex selective abortions, abandoning baby girls in orphanages, or even the outright murder of female infants. Whatever the method, the clear result is a severe lack of women in the next generation. This leads to a lot of unrest among the tens of millions of men who simply will never find a girlfriend, let alone get married or have children of their own. China may be attempting to alleviate a problem of its own creation by shifting the problem to someone else. In this lens, the threat of violence from the Uighurs is merely a convenient excuse, and even if the Uighurs were to somehow overnight become pacified and loyal Chinese citizens the concentration camps and forced marriages would still continue, because this a war over resources (women, in this case) that's only thinly disguised as some sort of 'defensive' action. The destruction of an ethnic minority would merely be collateral damage, rather than the goal itself.

Camp conditions[edit]

I spent seven days of hell there. My hands were handcuffed, my legs were tied. They threw me in a pit. I raised both my hands and looked above. At that moment, they poured water. I screamed. I don't know how long I was in the pit but it was winter and very cold. They said I was a traitor, that I had dual citizenship, that I had a debt and owned land.
—Orynbek Koksybek, camp survivor.[51]

Here are a list of videos, data, testimonies, and leaked documents regarding the nature of the camps.

Leaked documents[edit]

Leaked documents obtained by the New York Times found out how the camps are operated. For example, the documents state that the "students" were not allowed to leave the schools. Apart from that, the behavior of the students that their behavior could either shorten or extend the detention of their relatives. They also advised them that the camps were for their own good. In order to cheer up the students, they told officials “to show humane concern and stress the rules.” This may make it easier to indoctrinate them. They also made sure the students would tell them not to worry. However, the most important thing about the documents is that President Xi Jinping wants to deal with them with "absolutely no mercy".[52] Unfortunately, CCP apologists say that the grammar is wrong. This is completely bullshit as there are multiple ways of expression in Chinese.[53] Apart from that, the CCP does not deny the legitimacy of the documents.[54]

Another set of documents called the China Cables were obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.Wikipedia They serve as a manual for how to operate the camps. The manual (actually a telegram) describes certain things in great detail such as how to prevent escapes, how to maintain total secrecy[note 8], how to control disease outbreaks[note 9], how detainees can meet their relatives, and how to use the toilet.[55]

The China Cables also contained a nine-page memo for the camp operators ordering them to tighten restrictions. Among the memo's orders were "Increase discipline and punishment of behavioural violations", "Promote repentance and confession", "Make remedial Mandarin studies the top priority", and "[Ensure] full video surveillance coverage of dormitories and classrooms free of blind spots".[56] The memo also contains the sinister directive, "For those who harbour vague understandings, negative attitudes or even feelings of resistance... carry out education transformation to ensure that results are achieved."[56]

These documents are important as they corroborate the testimonies of former detainees (shown below) and are extremely consistent. Bring that up when someone screeches "NAYIRAH!!!!!!!!"

White papers[edit]

The white papers released by the Chinese government are proof something's wrong in Xinjiang.[57] An analysis by the Communist Party of India's official website shows that its "anti-terrorism" policy is similar to the Islamophobic and authoritarian policies after 9/11.[note 10] Apart from that, its policy of preventing crime is similar to America's method of policing black-majority neighborhoods.[54]

Prison footage[edit]

Leaked drone footage of blindfolded and shackled prisoners.[58]
See the main article on this topic: Prison

Although the camps are portrayed to look like wonderful schools, the camps that they don't show to the public function more like prisons. Footage captured by Bitter Winter in a camp shows that the re-education camps are designed like prisons. Each of the exterior windows are fitted with a lot of guard railings and guard netting. Apart from that, there are a lot of surveillance cameras. There is a very big surveillance room too.[note 11] There are surveillance cameras in every room, even in the toilets. There are also propaganda slogans on the walls such as "Heartfelt thanks for the cordial care of the Central Party Committee with comrade Xi Jinping", "make a habit of studying Mandarin", and "Follow the guidance of Xi Jinping's thought on socialism with Chinese characteristics for a new era and untiringly strive to realize the China dream of a great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation". Finally, there are areas surrounded by chain-linked fencing and a pile of unused wire netting.[59]

Apart from that, their builders told Bitter Winter that they have been built on a prison model. Furthermore, there have been pictures that show factories inside "transformation through education" camps.[60][note 12]

One of the workers in a re-education camp, 'Mr. Liu' (a pseudonym), occasionally referred to his workplace as a "prison". According to Liu, "Too many people are locked up here and perhaps, because of that, [they will] feel short on manpower. [Their] rotating time-off days are often cancelled, and [they] seldom get to take breaks. [Liu doesn't] know how much longer this high-pressure situation will continue.' He also explained that the camps have a quota to fill. If the Uighurs in the region cannot fill up the camps, they will send religious people instead.[61]

Evidence that proves that the camps are like prisons/function like prisons further validate testimonies from former detainees.[62]

This is a section in CCTV's propaganda tour around a re-education camp.[63]

Staged tours[edit]

A majority of the footage has come from staged tours. The CCP has attempted to show them as schools where Uighurs can learn different jobs. The Uighurs usually dance and sing folk songs. However, there are several incidents where Uighurs learn CCP propaganda, for example copying the lyrics of "I love Beijing Tiananmen" on a computer. Although this is normal in most Chinese schools (which indoctrinate Chinese children with CCP propaganda), this shows that the Chinese government treats them like children. They also sing nursery-level songs like "If you're happy and you know it" in the camps.[64]The majority of the YouTube comments in BBC's video were negative towards the camps and chastised them for being "creepy" and "spooky". This is similar to the reaction of a handful Chinese netizens on Weibo,Wikipedia a Chinese (and censored) version of Twitter. One netizen used sarcasm and said:

This is quite fantastic! Do they get winter- and summer holidays? When can they graduate? Can we visit there? And will we come out alive if we do?

Another said, in a sarcastic tone,

What a great educational programme, we should implement it all across the country, so that we can all be treated this well!

One more netizen said that:

Xinjiang’s present-day is Ningxia’s tomorrow.[note 13]

It should be noted that some of the comments on the video are positive towards the camps, with some describing Islam as a disease.[63]

Adrian Zenz also made a rebuttal on the thread. He noticed that the facial and body expressions did not match what they were saying, only showed the upper part of the facility, reciting the propaganda word by word, and the Xinjiang minister felt nervous.[65]

The majority of staged tours have a lot in common:

  • They focus on specific camps (e.g Hotan and Kashgar camps) and not suspicious ones. An example would be the re-education camp in Yining province that is way more guarded and prison-like.
  • Chinese state media carefully omit all the negative things in the camps. Most mainstream media show the same thing, but they occasionally show the poor living conditions and mass surveillance in the camps.
  • They only show their "re-educated" prisoners.

Some people have compared these camps to Theresienstadt Ghetto,Wikipedia which at one time was used as a Potemkin village[66][67]

Cultural genocide[edit]

Beards[edit]

Abnormally long beards are banned in Xinjiang because they supposedly breed terrorism, and people with long beards can be banned from riding public buses. In fact, a Uighur man was sentenced for having a long beard.[68] A handful of CCP apologists will attempt to justify this by claiming that terrorists usually have unusually long beards and this fashion normalizes extremist ideas. By that logic, Skinhead culture and bald heads should be banned because they normalize Neo-Nazism.[69]

Mosques[edit]

An investigation by The Guardian and Bellingcat suggest that China is working on demolishing Uighur mosques and shrines. One notable example would be the Imam Asim Shrine, which is a group of buildings and fences surrounding a small mud tomb believed to have the remains of a holy Islamic warrior from the 8th century CE. Pilgrims from all around the region would go there and find the site. However, it was completely gone on April 2019. In addition, 31 more mosques and 2 more shrines have been destroyed in Xinjiang.[70][71]

Around China[edit]

Although there is evidence that China is attempting to destroy mosques in Xinjiang, the Chinese government is also actively "sinicizing" (a euphemism for assimilation and indoctrination) Islam around China. For example, domes were removed from mosques in Henan, Hebei and Ningxia provinces during the COVID-19 pandemic. Anyone who tried to stop the "sinicization" campaign was arrested. Apart from that, the mosques have increased surveillance as well.[72]

Coverup[edit]

These coverups prove three things that show their propaganda fails:

  1. The CCP is constantly changing the narrative and hence is unreliable (indicative of consciousness of guilt).
  2. They use propaganda points ad nauseam and refuted by us in the bottom section.
  3. They are unable to explain certain things that contradict their narrative.

2018[edit]

At first, the CCP has denied the camps. Hu Lianhe, a high ranking CCP official, told the UN that “there is no such thing as re-education centers" or "counter-extremism training centers" in Xinjiang.[73][74]The Chinese ministry of foreign affairs has said that they have not heard about these camps.[75]However, due to the increasing backlash and evidence, the Chinese government has admitted to the existence of the camps. They tried to frame them as "vocational training centers" for criminals and terrorists. Shohrat Zakir said that "these centers are boarding schools".[76] Shortly after the CCP admitted to the existence of the camps, they released a documentary about the camps on the Chinese propaganda network CCTV.Wikipedia[63]

2019[edit]

Last year in 2018, Mihrigul Tursun, a former detainee, testified to the US Congress. She said that the authorities put a helmet-like thing on her head and electrocuted her. Apart from that, they also made her feel ashamed for being a Uighur. She also stated that one of her children died and 2 of her children are in critical health condition.[1][2] Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hua ChunyingWikipedia denied the accusations and said that she was never sent into a re-education camp. She also claimed that the children were sick due to natural causes.[77] The only way she could prove this was through (most likely false) testimonies shown on Chinese state propaganda outlet CGTNWikipedia.[78][note 14]

Later on, the CCP attempted to cover up their actions by getting "Uighur scholars" to attack Secretary of state Mike Pompeo.Wikipedia It feels suspicious as it is too spontaneous and feels like an astroturf movement. Apart from that, scholars are usually silenced international affairs like 9/11, the Iraq War, the rise of ISIS, the Israel-Palestine conflict, Brexit, and the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disasterWikipedia. They are also banned from talking about sensitive subjects in Xinjiang, especially the terrorist attacks. In addition, multiple prominent Uighur scholars have been arbitrarily detained or sent to a re-education camp. About 124 of these famous scholars have been recorded.[79][80]

In December 2019, many Uighur refugees went on social media and started the #Stillnoinfo campaign in response to China claiming that the camps have been closed. The Chinese government launched a propaganda campaign and pretended that they were lying.[81] However, it is very likely that they are forced interviews.[82] The creator of the hashtag, Bahram Sintash, believes that the international community will not fall for this propaganda. RFA spoke with Abdullah Rasul, the husband of Halinur’s cousin Raziyegul Ablimit, and said that the CGTN "interview" was most likely fake. Rusul also told Radio Free Asia that Halinur's husband and their child were arbitrarily arrested. Apart from that, her Chinese was very fluent, so there would be no reason for her to go to a camp. Finally, she felt shaky and distressed during the interview.[81][83] A reminder that other missing Uighurs, such as the Hamdullah family, also didn't reappear.[84]

Reactions[edit]

Sadly, global reactions to the persecution of Uighurs are relatively mild, in comparison to the Rohingya genocideWikipedia in Burma which drew harsh condemnations from across the Muslim world and landed Burma in international courts. This is largely due to China's global economic and political influence, having a permanent seat in the UN Security Council, and that the Uighur persecution has not devolved into mass killings (yet).

The US government has passed severalWikipedia billsWikipedia condemning China's treatment of the Uighurs. To nobody's surprise however, Donald Trump privately told Xi Jinping that incarcerating Uighurs in camps "was exactly the right thing to do".[85] Some loonier Islamophobes and White nationalists share Trump's sentiment, who not only do not deny it, but claim that it's the greatest thing ever.

Denialism and apologism[edit]

Not just a river in Egypt
Denialism
Icon denialism.svg
♫ We're not listening ♫

But Adrian Zenz is far-right![edit]

Rebuttal: Zenz's far-right, anti-semitic and fundamentalist[86]:290 views do not invalidate his research as they are not relevant to the topic. Even a far-right person can be occasionally right. This is a form of ad hominem and poisoning the well. They also claim that he is the only person who talks about this topic (some will make up big statistics like "90%"); this is blatant bullshit as there are other Xinjiang-related scholars like Timothy Grose, Darren Byler, and Dru Gladney, and many others who cover this topic. Similarly, the support of the Uighur cause by far-right opportunists like Marco Rubio and Tom Cotton in no way invalidates actual testimonies from Uighur refugees and reputable researchers.

Most of this information comes from The Grayzone, a source that does not have the best track record for accuracy. For example, they cherrypicked several quotes from Wall Street Journal's article about Zenz, trying to paint him as some delusional maniac who is hallucinating. In reality, the article only showed that Zenz was inspired to do research about it, and he felt that it was the right thing to do (according to his values).[87]

Finally, the tankies don't really care about Zenz's bigotry and only want to use it to demonize him. After all, they still worship Karl Marx and ignore his blatant anti-semitism.[88] By the way, isn't Chinese society rife with homophobia? Oh wait, that doesn't matter, that's CIA/NWO/Neocon/Jew propaganda!!!![89]

But Radio Free Asia is US state media![edit]

Rebuttal: Tankies also claim that most of the Xinjiang info comes from Radio Free Asia. They will bring up their history of being CIA propagandists.[90] Ironically, they cite a lot of Chinese state media like CGTN, Global Times, Xinhua and China Daily.

When all else fails, they will talk about how America previously used false pretenses to justify war scenarios (e.g. the Gulf of Tonkin incidentWikipedia, Nayirah TestimonyWikipedia and WMDs.) This is a variant of the media was wrong before fallacy.It's worth pointing out that the stories were also independently verified by reputable, non-government funded media such as The Washington Post and The New York Times, which themselves don't shy away from criticizing the US government's own policies. In contrast, Chinese state media are subject to official censorship, failed numerous fact checks, and perpetuated lies such as that the "silent majority" opposed the Hong Kong protests.[91][92][93]

With all that said, there is nothing wrong with noting that publicizing the human rights abuses of its geopolitical enemies fall in line with US foreign policy, although US criticisms of CCP policy in Xinjiang were relatively muted until 2020, when relations between the two countries broke down following the COVID-19 pandemic. And even then, it is not in the US's interests to wage war or encourage regime change on a nuclear power and one of its major trading partners.

IUDs are reversible![edit]

Rebuttal: China has had a history of using IUDs as a form of forced contraception, so it's not unlikely that they would be using them again this time on the Uighurs.[94]

Muslim countries support the camps![edit]

Countries that support (red) and oppose (blue) the Xinjiang re-education camps
Blue countries are in the BRI. Note that most, if not all, of the countries that support the camps are part of the BRI. Some countries that are BRI condemn the camps as they are not that economically dependent.

Rebuttal: Muslims are not a hive mind. A majority of these Muslim countries also happen to be a part of China's Belt and Road InitiativeWikipedia, which is a huge red flag since this makes these countries extremely economically dependent on China and are unlikely to criticize it. Apart from that, something seems suspicious when Saudi Arabia, which is one of the biggest sponsors of Islamic terrorism (especially Salafist/Sunni terrorism),[95], and which is currently waging a genocidal war in Yemen, claim to supports the destruction of Sunni terrorism. Pakistan is also a huge ally of China.[96] [note 15]

Another plausible explanation is that the Uighurs, being a Turkic people, have strong cultural ties with Turkey, which itself is involved in an ongoing disputeWikipedia alongside Qatar and Iran with the rest of Arab World. This, together with the presence of some Uighur Jihadist groupsWikipedia fighting alongside Turkey backed groups in the Syrian Civil War, allowed the Uighurs to be derogated by some as some sorts of Turkish proxies. [97] It is worth noting that Turkey itself never signed signed the pro-China letter despite being a member of BRI, while Qatar did but withdrew.

8.7%, not 80%![edit]

Rebuttal: This is a flagrant misrepresentation of Zenz's study. An analysis by Darren Byler found out that he was actually looking at the ratio of new IUD insertions (column 3 in the yearbook) as compared to numbers of IUDs removed (column 6). Apart from that, Zenz was looking at changes from 2015-2018. Finally, Byler did a further analysis and found out that the total number of IUDs in XUAR is 45 times higher than the national average, as opposed to other places in China like Henan which had 9 times higher than the national average.[98]

According to Zenz, he calculated the newly inserted IUDs by subtracting the removed IUDs by the total amount. [47]

Han Population decreased in the same time![edit]

Rebuttal: This is used to imply that correlation does not imply causation, so therefore a genocide is not happening.[99] However, the reason why the Han population decreased is actually caused by the ongoing crackdown in Xinjiang. According to a source close to the CCP, “Wang has said in his briefings that even the Han people are deeply dissatisfied [by the crackdown]”. For example, the population in Korla has halved since the re-education camps have been set up. The economy in this city has decreased due to the mass migration.[100][101]

The birth rate decrease can be explained by poverty reduction![edit]

Rebuttal: Denialists, including the Chinese government, claim that the sudden drop can be explained by demographic transitionWikipedia.[99] They try to make comparisons to the White genocide conspiracy theory in order to poison the well.[102] However, demographic transition happens over a longer period of time than 1 year.

Apart from that, the economy of Korla has diminished due to the crackdown, so this refutes this claim that there is significant economic development in the region..[101]

Finally, Hotan City's family planning documents tell them to make sure that the birth rate in 2019 should not exceed 2018, showing that they are planning on suppressing birth rates.[103]

There are over 25 thousand mosques in Xinjiang![edit]

Rebuttal: Their argument also talks about how there is one mosque for every 500 Muslims. Then, they compare it to America's ratio (1 mosque for 1643 Muslims). This is an extremely flawed counter argument as the ratio in Myanmar, noted for its own persecution of Rohingya Muslims, is 1 mosque for every 800 Muslims. Apart from that, they forget that the mosques are surveilled and razed.[104]The Chinese government has also admitted to assimilating (euphemism is "Sinicize") the top 5 religions in China (this includes Islam along with other mainstream religions like Christianity, Buddhism, Catholicism, and Taoism).[105][note 16]

CCP apologists will also point to random videos showing mass prayers in China. However, these videos are usually not situated in Xinjiang, but some Han-majority area like Qinghai. Again, they straw man the argument that Islam is completely banned in China. In reality, the main point is to "Sinicize" religion and force religious people to obey the CCP through religion (e.g putting pictures of Mao Zedong and Xi Jinping in churches).[106]Religions and cults that are a threat to the CCP's rule will be persecuted like Falun Gong and Eastern Lightning.[note 17]

A Chinese scholar refuted it![edit]

Adrian Zenz has written a well-sourced rebuttal to it.[107][47]

But terrorist incidents have gone down since the camps opened![edit]

Because stripping an ethnicity of their rights and identity neverWikipedia caused long term conflicts in history, right? Also, correlation does not imply causation.

See also[edit]

External Links[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. Also spelled 'Uyghur'
  2. Chen Quanguo has worked in Tibet before and oppressed the Tibetan people.
  3. Before this, Turkic and Uighur were used interchangeably to described the Turkic population of the region.
  4. Note that China only has around 1 million PLA soldiers.
  5. Grayzone doubts this number as Istiqlal TV is biased towards Xinjiang separatists.
  6. CCP propagandists make fun of people who mistakenly assume that it is 1.3 million people every year and hence 8 million Uighurs; keep in mind it is close to the total population of Uighurs in China.[33]
  7. Now where can you find a stack of shoes?
  8. This is extremely important as this shows that they are not transparent about the true nature of the camps
  9. Proof that the COVID-19 Pandemic does not mean that detainees are released.
  10. No, it's still not an inside job.
  11. Even guided tour camps have a lot of cameras.
  12. Transformation through education is most likely a euphemism for re-education camps.
  13. Ningxia is a Muslim-dominated province.
  14. CGTN and its parent company CCTV have a history of airing multiple forced confessionsWikipedia. Very reliable.
  15. In fact, the relationship between the two countries can be Pakistan and China described by Pakistan's ambassador to China as "higher than the mountains, deeper than the oceans, stronger than steel, dearer than eyesight, sweeter than honey, and so on."
  16. "Sinicize" also refers to the use of religions to spread CCP propaganda. Read Wikipedia's page on Religious socialismWikipedia for more information. However, this leads to issues like the 11th Panchen Lama controversyWikipedia
  17. They say these cults spread pseudoscience and are extremely dangerous. However, top officials retweet conspiracy sites like Globalresearch. This is similar to America using freedom and democracy to invade countries like Iraq.

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Muslim woman describes torture and beatings in China detention camp: ‘I begged them to kill me’. The Independent.]
  2. 2.0 2.1 'I Begged Them to Kill Me.' Uighur Woman Tells Congress of Torture in Chinese Internment Camps. TIME.]
  3. Despite China’s denials, its treatment of the Uyghurs should be called what it is: cultural genocide
  4. On Xinjiang, even those wary of Holocaust comparisons are reaching for the word “genocide"
  5. The untold "truth" about Xinjiang
  6. Open Letter of Concern to Governments on Crimes Against Humanity and Genocide Against Uyghurs in China
  7. On Xinjiang, even those wary of Holocaust comparisons are reaching for the word “genocide”. Quartz.
  8. China- Genocide watch
  9. GENOCIDE EMERGENCY ALERT FOR XINJIANG, CHINA
  10. Gladney, Dru C. "The Chinese Program of Development and Control, 1978–2001". In Starr (2004), pp. 101–119.
  11. Rahman, Anwar (2005). Sinicization Beyond the Great Wall: China's Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region. Kibworth Beauchamp: Troubador Publishing Ltd.
  12. Millward, James A. (2007). Eurasian Crossroads: A History of Xinjiang. London: Hurst Publishers.
  13. Bellér-Hann, Ildikó, ed. (2007). Situating the Uyghurs Between China and Central Asia. Ashgate.
  14. Bovingdon, Gardner (2010). The Uyghurs: Strangers in Their Own Land. Columbia University Press.
  15. Migration and Inequality in Xinjiang: A Survey of Han and Uyghur Migrants in Urumqi Anthony Howell and C. Cindy Fan.
  16. Shichor, Yitzhak. "The Great Wall of Steel Military and Strategy in Xinjiang". In Starr (2004), pp. 120–162.
  17. Patrick, Shawn M. (2010). The Uyghur Movement: China's Insurgency in Xinjiang. School of Advanced Military Studies. 20 May, 2010.
  18. "China Steps Up 'Strike Hard' Campaign in Xinjiang" (in en). 
  19. Kang, Dake; Wang, Yanan (November 30, 2018). "China's Uighurs told to share beds, meals with party members". Associated Press. 
  20. Crane, Brent (22 August 2014). "A Tale of Two Chinese Muslim Minorities". The Diplomat. 
  21. Inside China's "thought transformation camps" by BBC
  22. Canadian went to China to debunk reports of anti-Muslim repression, but was 'shocked' by treatment of Uyghurs
  23. China convicts Uighurs in sham trials at Xinjiang camps
  24. The Karakax List: Dissecting the Anatomy of Beijing’s Internment Drive in Xinjiang by Adrian Zenz (2020) Journal of Political Risk 8(2).
  25. How China targets Muslims for reeducation camps- and spies on their families
  26. New evidence for China's Uighur prison system | DW News
  27. 'Leaked' Xinjiang files likely cooked up by foreign intel agencies
  28. CGTN chides the @CHRDnet study for estimating 1 million detainees based on only 8 interviews. Indeed a tiny sample size. But ironically, the internment shares estimated by those 8 locals are not far off from the internment shares reported by 3 townships, also from Kashgar by Adrian Zenz (3:43 PM - 30 Dec 2019) Twitter (archived from January 10, 2020).
  29. CHRD stands firmly by estimate of 1 million Uighurs detained
  30. China detaining millions of Uyghurs? Serious problems with claims by US-backed NGO and researcher
  31. Newsweek Japan
  32. China defends its 'vocational training centres' in Xinjiang White Paper
  33. See the Wikipedia article on Uyghurs.
  34. List of re-education camps in Xinjiang
  35. China Secretly Built A Vast New Infrastructure To Imprison Muslims
  36. Inside China's internment camps: Tear gas, tasers and textbooks
  37. Mapping Xinjiang's 're-education' camps
  38. Here is the PDF
  39. Criminal Arrests in Xinjiang Account for 21% of China’s Total in 2017
  40. China's hidden camps
  41. One in Six Uyghurs held in 'Political Re-education Camps in Xinjiang's Onsu County
  42. More than 1 million Muslims are detained in China—but how did we get that number?
  43. 1 million citizens occupy Uighur homes
  44. Chinese officials forcing their way into women's beds
  45. Uighur women coerced into unwanted marriages
  46. Click to download
  47. 47.0 47.1 47.2 47.3 A Response to the Report Compiled by Lin Fangfei, Associate Professor at Xinjiang University
  48. From AP
  49. What is happening to the Uighurs? Exiled Uighurs push for ‘genocide’ investigation - BBC Newsnight
  50. Des femmes ouïghoures témoignent des violences subies dans leurs entrailles: "Un médecin belge m’a appris que j’avais été stérilisée en Chine. Je l’ignorais…"(French)
  51. Uighur crackdown: 'I spent seven days of hell in Chinese camps'. BBC News.
  52. 'Absolutely No Mercy': Leaked documents expose how China organized mass detentions of Muslims
  53. Chunghwaminkuo subreddit
  54. 54.0 54.1 China's Concentration Camps For Uyghurs: In China's Own Words
  55. Exposed: China’s Operating Manuals for Mass Internment and Arrest by Algorithm
  56. 56.0 56.1 Data leak reveals how China 'brainwashes' Uighurs in prison camps. BBC News.
  57. A full read of the white papers here.
  58. China footage reveals hundreds of blindfolded and shackled prisoners. The Guardian.
  59. A Jail by Any Other Name: Xinjiang Re-education Camp for Uyghurs — Exclusive Report by Bitter Winter
  60. Xinjiang Camps Were Built as Prisons, Their Builders Expose
  61. "Studies in prison": Staff member uncovers details of a camp
  62. Shocking footage purportedly shows cells inside prison camp where China oppresses Muslim minority
  63. 63.0 63.1 63.2 CCTV Airs Program on Xinjiang’s ‘Vocational Training Centers’: Criticism & Weibo Responses
  64. The 10 Biggest China Stories of 2019 (Go to 7:43)
  65. Adrian Zenz thread on CCTV
  66. Theresienstadt had an all-Jewish symphony orchestra. by Adrian Zenz (09:25 - 6. Oct. 2020) Twitter (archived from October 6, 2020).
  67. Didn’t Hitler do something like that with a Red Cross visit in 1944 to the Theresienstadt concentration camp? by @oftosa (Jan 6, 2019) Twitter (archived from October 19, 2020).
  68. Uyghur Man Sentenced for Keeping a Beard
  69. Xinjiang city bans beards, Islamic dresses from public buses
  70. In China, every day is Kristallnacht by Fred Hiatt (November 3, 2019) The Washington Post.
  71. Demolishing Faith: The Destruction and Desecration of Uyghur Mosques and Shrines (10/28/2019 - 14:00) Uyghur Human Rights Project.
  72. Numerous Mosques ‘Sinicized’ Amid the Pandemic
  73. ‘No Such Thing’: China Denies U.N. Reports of Uighur Detention Camps
  74. Slandering Xinjiang as "no rights zone" against fact, Chinese officials told UN panel
  75. Reeducation Returns to China
  76. China's secret internment camps
  77. Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying's Regular Press Conference on January 21, 2019
  78. CGTN finds Mihrigul Tursun's claims false
  79. “Uyghur Scholars” Defend the CCP—Really?
  80. List of Uyghur intellectuals imprisoned in China from 2016 to the present
  81. 81.0 81.1 Crash the #Stillnoinfo rumors: We found her!
  82. Uighurs in US Say China Using Detained Family Members in Forced Interviews
  83. Chinese Media Campaign to Discredit Movement For Missing Uyghurs Will Fail: #StillNoInfo Founder
  84. Missing Uyghurs Do Not Reappear: The Case of the Hamdullah Family
  85. "China Lashes Out at U.S.'s Action Against Mass Incarcerations". The New York Times. 18 June 2020. 
  86. Worthy to Escape: Why All Believers Will Not Be Raptured Before the Tribulation by Adrian Zenz & Marlon L. Sias (2012) WestBow Press. ISBN 1449769071.
  87. The German Data Diver Who Exposed China’s Muslim Crackdown
  88. lmao
  89. It Can Be Dangerous To Wave a Rainbow LGBT Flag In China
  90. Worldwide propaganda network built by the CIA
  91. CGTN-Media Bias Fact Check
  92. Global Times-Media Bias Fact Check
  93. Global Times Newsguard PDF
  94. Forced Contraception
  95. The Saudi Cables
  96. Muslim countries joined China in defending its cultural genocide of Uighurs. Aren't they ashamed?
  97. "The implications of the Qatar-Turkey alliance". 18 June 2017. Retrieved 18 June 2017. 
  98. Darren Byler's Thread
  99. 99.0 99.1 GT investigation busts West's birth control lies in Xinjiang
  100. Beijing is struggling to recruit people to run Xinjiang
  101. 101.0 101.1 Xinjiang security crackdown sparks Han Chinese exodus
  102. [1]
  103. 和田市人口和计划生育委员会 2019 年部门预算公开 (Chinese)
  104. Timothy Grose Thread
  105. 5 main religions in China agree to sinicize
  106. Xi Jinping Portraits Replace Catholic Symbols in Churches
  107. This is my detailed response to Beijing's allegations that I miscalculated or misrepresented population statistics in my "Demographic Genocide" report. I specifically rebut a report written by Lin Fangfei, Associate Professor at Xinjiang University. https://link.medium.com/9NU4hxpsnab by Adrian Zenz (19:09 - 6. Oct. 2020) Twitter (archived from October 7, 2020).