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Op-Ed

Is America Serious about Human Rights in China?

June 4, 2019

EXCERPT

It’s been 30 years since the Tiananmen Square Massacre. Three decades ago today, the Chinese Communist Party ordered the slaughter of thousands of unarmed, peaceful, pro-freedom protestors. To this day, it’s one of the most brutal atrocities ever perpetrated by that murderous regime. Anyone who thinks otherwise can watch the clips on YouTube or Twitter (until they are removed).

Yet it’s also been 30 years of American equivocation over what happened at Tiananmen Square. Our politicians have said all the right things, condemning the massacre and calling for justice. But when it comes to action, the most powerful free nation on earth has given Beijing a pass — no concrete steps, no meaningful demands, no proof that we respect the Chinese people and not just the power dynamic of the Chinese Communist Party.

This matters now more than ever. America’s continued unwillingness to hold China’s government accountable for the Tiananmen Square Massacre has made us less likely to push back on Beijing’s other atrocities and assaults on freedom. Today, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is crushing Tibet, chipping away at Hong Kong’s fragile liberty, and forcing the Muslim Uighurs into de facto slavery. Sadly, once again, America’s leaders can only muster strongly-worded statements, rather than demonstrate real resolve and muscle in defense of the values of freedom that define our nation.

At the time of publishing, Marion Smith was executive director of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation.

Originally published in The Hill.

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