The People’s Republic of China is the world’s most populous autocracy, controlled by a very small winning coalition, of perhaps 200 members. Predictably, it is one of the world’s worst functioning societies from the perspectives of human rights and economic freedoms. The leaders of the country are busily engaged in looting the people for their own private benefit and in making sure that no whiff of jasmine reaches its masses, yearning as they are to be free.
So it is no surprise that the regime clamped down hard on one of its most heroic citizens, the blind human rights activist, Chen Guangcheng, first jailing him and then subjecting him to house arrest for the crime of exposing forced abortions in pursuance of the one-child policy across the People’s Republic. For good measure, the Standing Committee of Nine has made sure that Chen’s wife has been brutally beaten at regular intervals as a warning to other would be activists who work for personal freedom in this wretched enslaved country.
Last week Chen made a brilliant escape from his thuggish environment, finding his way, with the assistance of other like-minded freedom-fighters, to relative security in the United States Embassy in Beijing. The U.S. media is now making a big deal about the difficulty this situation imposes for the Obama administration, in resolving the future of an unexpected guest.
The hand-wringing is surely specious. For the solution is self-evident, if the principles of individual liberty and national sovereignty are the joint criteria that govern rational decision-making.
President Obama should immediately and unconditionally offer Chen political asylum in the United States. If he accepts, then the United States should provide him with safe passage from Beijing to the United States, with or without the permission of the Chinese dictators, and by whatever means – transparent or opaque – are considered necessary.
Should Chen choose to remain within the People’s Republic, in order to pursue his political agenda from within his own country, President Obama should release him from the Embassy to whomsoever he may choose, but without any further United States’ protection. To do otherwise would be to transgress upon sovereign rights. And the United States has no justification for so transgressing, unless it chooses to declare war on the People’s Republic. Such a declaration, of course, would be extremely unwise, and almost certainly would be political suicide for the Obama administration.
The solution is simple, but it will take political courage to effect it. Whether President Obama is endowed with such courage is yet to be revealed. No doubt all will be revealed well before the November 2012 elections take place. It should not take more than six months to spirit one dedicated freedom-fighter to the freedom that he has so justly earned.
Unfortunately, whatever happens, Chen’s family will remain in the brutal hands of China’s autocrats. The days of the devils are still with us, and will so remain until the sweet scent of jasmine embraces the entire Middle Kingdom.