What Happened to ‘Never Again’?
Here are three statements made by European leaders this year. Can you fill in the blanks?
“It is not possible to shape the world of tomorrow without a strong EU- ______ relationship.” —European Union Commission President Ursula von der Leyen
It is in Europe’s “utmost interest” to work closely “with ______ on all fronts.” —German Chancellor Angela Merkel
The “right path” for Europe is to “take stock of ______’s innovation policies and formidable economy” and pursue “engagement rather than confrontation.” —EU diplomat Nicolas Chapuis
These statements reflect an increasingly prevalent view among the leaders and people of Europe. One might think the innovative, economically powerful nation they want to build a strong relationship with on all fronts is the same democracy that has spent hundreds of billions of dollars over the past 75 years to rebuild and safeguard Europe and to stabilize the world: the United States.
It isn’t. It is the Communist regime of the People’s Republic of China.
In recent years, Europe and China have dramatically boosted their trade. China is now the EU’s second-biggest trade partner, and the EU is China’s biggest. The two have also expanded political, technological, educational, environmental, energy, cultural, scientific and even military cooperation.
And a growing number of European policymakers are determined to do whatever it takes to continue shaping the world of tomorrow by engaging with China—even if it means compromising democratic values, and remaining mostly silent about the Communist regime’s abuse of human rights, and even as that violation of individual rights becomes increasingly obvious and obviously cruel.
Xinjiang and ‘Organs of Dictatorship’
The location where China’s cruelty is on most glaring display is Xinjiang in the northwest of the nation. This region was long disputed by the Mongols, Chinese and various Turkic peoples. But in the 18th century, the disputes abruptly ended when the area was conquered by China’s Qing Dynasty. Ever since, it has been a flash point for conflicts between the indigenous Uyghur people, who seek to make Xinjiang autonomous, and China’s leaders, who refuse to release the area from what they term “the great family of Chinese national territory.”
Tensions worsened throughout the 1990s and 2000s. In 2014 China’s new leader, Xi Jinping, cracked down. “Show absolutely no mercy,” he said in a speech to officials of the Chinese Communist Party (ccp), telling them they must subjugate the Uyghurs “without any hesitation or wavering” using “the organs of dictatorship.”
Xi’s government quickly turned his terrifying orders from that secret speech into public reality. By 2017, the Communist Party had filled Xinjiang with innumerable cameras, thousands of checkpoints and hundreds of “reeducation centers.” It had even removed Uyghur men from their homes, replacing them with Han Chinese men. Xinjiang had been converted into a police state.
By last year, somewhere between 1.1 and 3 million of the region’s 10 million Uyghurs were detained in these centers. The ccp insists that the goal is to purge religious extremism from their thinking and teach them vocational skills. But evidence from survivors and from leaked ccp documents reveal the true purpose: The party is determined to “Sinicize” Xinjiang to assimilate Uyghurs into a monolithic Han culture, and to eliminate any who will not submit.
Detainees are forced to break their religion by eating pork and drinking alcohol. They are banned from praying or speaking their native languages. Resistors routinely face starvation, torture, sexual abuse, forced abortions and sterilization. Unknown numbers are killed in the camps.
Last year, Uyghur activist organizations testified to the China Tribunal that the ccp’s crimes against humanity in Xinjiang included cutting out detainees’ organs against their will. After reviewing testimony from more than 50 witnesses, and mountains of video and written evidence, the tribunal determined “with certainty” and “beyond reasonable doubt” that “in China, forced organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience has been practiced for a substantial period of time involving a very substantial number of victims.” This is evil on a level that makes you physically sick to imagine.
Some 75 years ago, after Nazi Germany’s slaughter of 6 million Jews, the phrase “never again” became the solemn vow for many in Europe and beyond. Never again would the nations of the world sit by as a government systematically carried out such satanic horrors on any group.
But the Uyghur people are living a nightmare under the boot of the Chinese Communist Party. A 21st-century holocaust is happening to them right now. But as with the Holocaust against the Jews in the 1930s and 1940s, most Europeans ignore it. And few of the Continent’s leaders take a meaningful stand against it.
Last year, Germany signed a United Nations statement condemning the Xinjiang camps, but the words have been accompanied by no diplomatic punishments or economic sanctions—let alone military movements. Instead, as evidence of this modern holocaust was multiplying, the EU decided to press ahead with a major summit with China.
“The extent of human rights violations” means it is “inappropriate to court the Chinese party-state in this situation,” said Katrin Kinzelbach, a human rights professor at the University of Erlangen–Nuremberg. But that is exactly what Germany is doing with this “special EU-China summit.”
The summit was eventually postponed. But not because the EU developed a conscience about Xinjiang. It was postponed because of a different evil that China has unleashed on the world: covid-19.
It Could Have Been Stopped
It is now clear that in November 2019, the Chinese Communist Party received warnings from authorities in Wuhan about a new virus that was resistant to medications. But instead of taking steps to contain it in those early days and to warn the world, the Communist Party took exactly the opposite approach.
The government apprehended journalists reporting on the outbreak, arrested citizens posting about it online, and detained doctors and strong-armed them into retracting warnings they had issued. The Communist Party destroyed lab samples, refused to admit medical experts from other countries, and lied repeatedly and brazenly to governments and media. And some Chinese critics of their handling of the outbreak—including a property tycoon, a prominent blogger and the head of Emergency at Wuhan Central Hospital—were simply “disappeared” by the regime.
It was only in late January—after at least seven weeks had passed and after some 7 million potentially infected people had left Wuhan for other parts of the world—that the Communist Party began taking quarantine measures and alerting the world of the outbreak. Even then, after China finally began working with the World Health Organization, a Central Intelligence Agency report shows that the Chinese regime threatened to “stop cooperating” with the who’s investigation “if the organization declared a global health emergency.”
Meanwhile, as the regime was pressuring the who to downplay the threat, it ordered Chinese embassies and other Chinese organizations in countries worldwide to buy up as much medical equipment as possible abroad and ship it to China. In Australia, for example, journalist Liz Storer reported that “Chinese government-backed organizations” ceased normal business operations during January and February to “literally pillage Australia” for epidemic-related supplies, “which they proudly put into massive containers and shipped back to China.”
Data from China’s General Administration of Customs shows that from January 24 to February 29, China imported a total of 2.5 billion pieces of personal protective equipment. This represents an eye-popping quantity of gear—18 times larger than the usual amount—that China bought up from nations that were unaware of how disruptive covid-19 would soon become for their own populations. White House Director of Trade and Manufacturing Peter Navarro said on April 21 that China “vacuumed up all of the personal protective equipment around the world while it was hiding the virus.”
Perhaps the purchasing frenzy was primarily intended to equip China’s population with supplies needed to combat the disease. But the Chinese Communist Party would also have well understood that by muzzling the cowardly who, the disease was sure to go global, and that the countries whose shelves its agents had just pillaged would then be desperate for protective equipment. And then when China did not end up using all of the equipment it had hoarded, it was well positioned to sell the excess back to desperate and fearful nations at a major markup. “Not only is China hoarding,” Navarro said, “they are also selling it back to the world at prices that are obscene.”
China’s state-run media outlet Xinhua recently lauded the “precious time that China has bought the world” with its management of the coronavirus. But the facts show just the opposite. The Chinese Communist Party tried to save face instead of save lives. It prioritized its own survival above that of the Chinese people or the other peoples of the world, and as such it is culpable for the virus’s global spread. The facts show that it was the regime’s dishonesty and ineptitude that unleashed this pathogen that has killed hundreds of thousands of people and began pushing economies into recession.
What has been Europe’s response to all this? As Liz Storer, Peter Navarro and others in the English-speaking nations were sounding the alarm on China’s dishonesty, Europe took a different route. The New York Times explained: “Worried about the repercussions, European officials first delayed and then rewrote [a report on disinformation about the pandemic] in ways that diluted the focus on China, a vital trading partner—taking a very different approach than the confrontational stance adopted by the Trump administration” (April 24).
In June, the European Commission did offer some criticism of China’s spread of false information regarding covid-19. But as with Xinjiang, it was a token statement that has not reversed Europe’s outreach to China one iota.
One Country, One System
In the early 19th century, Hong Kong was populated by only around 7,500 people in scattered fishing villages. But after Britain hoisted its flag there in 1841, the island rapidly blossomed into a hub for European entrepreneurs eager to trade with Asia under British laws and British protection. Chinese nationals flocked there for jobs, and, as the mainland underwent political turmoil, new waves of Chinese refugees regularly fled to the island.
By 1997, when Britain ceded Hong Kong to China, the population had reached a staggering 6.5 million. And many feared that the freedoms and liberty-protecting principles Britain had established there would be erased by the Chinese Communist Party. To mitigate the fear, China promised to let Hong Kong keep its distinct identity under a rubric called “one country, two systems.” This guaranteed that, for at least 50 years, Hong Kong would be part of the “one country” of China, but the Communists would let the government and people operate their own “system.” That meant a high degree of economic, political and judicial autonomy—including passing their own laws.
For the first few years, the promise was carefully respected. But in the 2000s, China began inserting itself into some of Hong Kong’s affairs, and the people of the territory demonstrated against it. As the years went by, Beijing’s pushes against Hong Kong’s semi-autonomy continued, and each inspired bouts of heated protests.
Last summer, an analyst in the territory told the Trumpet on the condition of anonymity that China was bending its “two systems” promise near to a breaking point. The Communist Party was maneuvering to make Hong Kong a typical Chinese city where its members wield authority above the law. He said he feared for his safety: “From the bottom of my heart,” he said, “I would warn anyone, in any country, beware of the Chinese government.”
But most nations, including most in Europe, said little and did even less regarding China’s encroachment against Hong Kong. And in June, China shattered its promise.
The new security laws that China illegally imposed on the island criminalize subversion, secession, terrorism and collusion with foreign entities. Under “one country, two systems,” Hong Kong was to pass its own legislation until at least 2047. Now the Communist Party has ramrodded its own laws through, and can classify most any criticism of the party, including peaceful protests about Beijing breaking its promise, as one of these crimes—and execute punishment accordingly.
The draconian laws also establish a force of Chinese security and intelligence agents in Hong Kong for the first time. As with such forces on the mainland, they are immune to many laws and are tasked with imposing Communist Party power over Hong Kongers at all costs.
Perhaps most worrying is the “extraterritoriality” provision of the new laws. The law claims that it applies not only to anyone in Hong Kong, regardless of their nationality or residency, but also to actions committed “from outside the region by a person who is not a permanent resident of the region.” That means that you who are reading this article right now, in whatever nation you may be, are likely in violation of China’s new laws and, if possible, therefore subject to arrest. This brazenly violates international law.
Though the new laws have not yet been invoked to make apprehensions outside China, they have resulted in a number of arrests in Hong Kong, including that of tycoon Jimmy Lai on August 10. The 71-year-old ran the pro-democracy Apple Daily newspaper and was detained by a group of 200 police officers for “colluding with foreign powers”—though there is no evidence of any such collusion. Under the new law, individuals like Lai can be sentenced to life in prison, or worse.
The new law “buries one country, two systems” the Economist wrote, adding that it shows that the Chinese Communist Party “would rather be feared than admired” (July 2).
After the law was imposed, the Trumpet reached out to the Hong Kong analyst who had often supplied us with firsthand accounts and analysis. But he, like tens of thousands of other former activists, had deleted all the online accounts that had been used for years to cry out for freedom. His fate is unknown.
We are not even halfway through the promised 50 years, but it is clear China has ended Hong Kong’s freedoms. And now the stakes are so high, there is almost no one left willing to protest.
The U.S. and UK quickly responded to China’s illegal measure, rushing through new legislation that ends extraditions to Hong Kong and opening paths for its people to resettle in America and Britain. The EU, though, only said it would “continue to follow developments.” New Europe’s Robert Tyler called this a move “akin to that of stating that you’ll observe the future growth of a plant a month after you stopped watering it.”
It is not just with Xinjiang, covid-19 and Hong Kong. When it comes to China’s similarly illegal and disturbing behavior in Tibet, Taiwan, the South China Sea, the World Trade Organization, and in the economic, cyber and technology realms, the reaction from Europe is generally the same: Make statements or gestures that may not be wholly meaningless, but are basically the bare minimum to give an appearance of caring about China’s evil—and all the while keep deepening the Europe–China relationship.
This behavior from a continent that professes to champion democracy, international law and human rights would be utterly baffling, were it not for prophecies that foretold this development.
‘Mart of Nations’
Around 2,700 years ago, the Prophet Isaiah was inspired to write of an immensely powerful, multinational trade alliance that would develop in the modern age. Isaiah 23:3 labels this a “mart of nations.”
Verse 1 identifies one of the lead players in this conglomerate as “Chittim.” In Isaiah’s End-Time Vision, Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry writes, “Kittim is synonymous with the Chittim of Isaiah’s prophecy …. After their migration through Central Asia, the Kittim made their appearance in modern-day northeastern China and Mongolia.” So this name indicates modern China.
Isaiah’s prophecy says “Tyre” will also be a major player in this bloc. Mr. Flurry explains what this name signifies: “The spiritual center of the [modern European] Holy Roman Empire is called Babylon in your Bible (Revelation 17:5; 18:1-3). But here in Isaiah, the Bible refers to Tyre (and its allies Zidon, etc.) as the commercial center of this European power.”
A related passage in Ezekiel 27 says “Meshech” and “Tarshish,” ancient terms indicating modern Russia and Japan, will also join this globe-girdling trade alliance.
Together these nations will come to control global commerce for a brief time, and the Scriptures show that they will use that control to strangle America and some of its allies.
“The Bible contains many prophecies of that European power attacking America,” Mr. Flurry writes. When it happens, “there will be no help or sympathy from Asia.” In fact, “Russia, China and Japan” will form a “brief alliance” with Europe. “All of them are going to besiege America, Britain and the Jewish nation.”
Mr. Flurry continues: “This is why Isaiah’s prophecy of an end-time ‘mart of nations’ that includes both European and Asian powers is so intriguing. And why the trend of collusion between these two great economic blocs is worth watching.”
From these prophecies, we should expect the ties now growing between the EU and China—including those perpetuated by Europe’s refusal to meaningfully confront China’s viciousness—to only grow stronger in the years ahead. Even as Xi Jinping’s China grows more aggressive and more malicious, Europe will increasingly side with it—and against America. And this trend will culminate in a time of extreme calamity and darkness.
But Bible prophecy does not end there! The Scriptures show that the darkness will not last long, and will be overcome by light. An entirely new era, the most luminous epoch in mankind’s history, will begin.
“[T]hat trading partnership won’t last long,” Mr. Flurry writes. “Soon they will clash, just before Jesus Christ returns and destroys both of them.”
The Creator of mankind will come back to Earth and bring a decisive end to man’s rebellion, self-destruction, human rights abuses, reproductive genocide, oppression, diseases and countless other evils. He will usher in an age of peace and stability for the Uyghurs, Chinese, Hong Kongers, Europeans and all the world. “Thank God,” Mr. Flurry writes, “there is great news beyond the bad news.”