As hotly contested policies restrict civil liberties, America and its political class are contemplating the future outlook of what the new normal would be in the post-COVID-19 pandemic. Whether it’s in America or the global political climate, one word is not universally defined: freedom.
While some contest face coverings and other health precautionary measures, it is important to look abroad to appreciate the individual freedoms that United States citizens take for granted, even amid a pandemic.
As a Jewish millennial, I have been told of and learned about the stories of suffering my ancestors experienced under Adolf Hitler during the Holocaust.
This is why the suffering of the Uighur people in China immensely resonates with me. The suffering by Uighurs is all too familiar to Jewish people and all too reminiscent of policies Hitler inflicted upon them. Arguably, the atrocities inflicted on the Uighurs could be viewed as a potential Holocaust of the 21st century.
The United Nations lists five criteria for genocide but only one needs to be fulfilled to designate a state’s action as genocide. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been proven to have fulfilled four out of five criteria against Uighurs Muslims.
A small Islamic minority in the Xinjiang province in Northern China, the CCP has been persecuting and transporting the Uighur Muslim population to forced labor camps where they commit acts of cultural genocide.
The CPP has interned more than one million Uighurs within at least 85 forced labor camps, dubbed “re-education centers” where brainwashing is the norm. The mental anguish and slave labor are the first infractions to be classified as a genocide.
But the horrors don’t stop there.
The CCP also causes serious bodily and mental harm that meets the conditions for the second criterium of genocide. The mental harm that one must feel within these facilities by renouncing their religion incomprehensible to those who have not experienced forced conversion.
The party has banned the growth of a distinct Uighur characteristic of growing long beards. Those who defy the orders are arrested and taken to detention camps. Uighur men have been arrested for growing a beard, fasting, or applying for a passport.
Vital documents reveal how the camps are run akin to facilities such as maximum-security penitentiaries. The memo includes rules such as to never allow a detainee to escape and to increase the frequency of punishment.
The Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) described the horrors the Uighur population is subjugated to — pledging loyalty to the CCP and renouncing their faith. The CCP’s long-term goal is to wipe the Uighur culture from the Xinjiang region, intentionally committing cultural genocide.
The clearest indicator of genocide — in the CCP’s case — is the fourth guideline, forced sterilization. Survivors and leaks have provided primary documents and sources on the forced sterilization of Uighur women within the detention camps.
Brought to light by Adrian Zenz of the Jamestown Foundation, Uighur women are forcefully sterilized or given late-term abortions to control the Uighur demographic. The Chinese Communist Party has vehemently denied all claims of wrongdoing to the national world.
Chinese Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Liu Xiaoming, was presented with video evidence of Uighur Muslims being boarded onto trains. Xiaoming stared blankly at the video saying he did not know what the video was presenting.
Multiple sources provide documentation and evidence of the cultural genocide taking place within the ‘re-education’ facilities. What the CCP has put into practice is not new policies, just old Nazi policies that were inflicted on my ancestors and many more cultural minorities.
These facilities are reminiscent of Nazi concentration camps, where Nazi’s threw any unwanted cultural minority within for free labor. Forced sterilization, while not originated by the Nazis, was a popular tool used by Nazi scientists to stop the new births of Jewish children.
The denial from Chinese officials must be questioned as more sources continue to come forward.
As the global community has made the mistake of turning a blind eye to oncoming genocide, Americans cannot afford to fail the Uighurs like the global community failed the cultural minorities in Europe during the 1940s.