We must speak out

The JC Leader, 25 July 2020

July 23, 2020 10:27

In 1945, the world swore Never Again. Decades of education, awareness and campaigning followed, with the noble and important aim of ensuring that human beings are never able repeat the bestial evil of the Holocaust.

But today, we have to ask whether those words mean anything. Cambodia. Rwanda. Bosnia. Darfur. The names signify mass murder.

Today, before our eyes, the Uighurs are being ushered into camps, detained and murdered by the Chinese government. But where is the outrage? Where is the coverage? Where is the determined leadership?

For sure, the behaviour of the Chinese government is now a major issue. But it is being held to account for its espionage. A vital issue for our nation and the West, yes. But it pales in comparison with the systematic murder of an entire people.

And yet one could read a raft of newspapers and watch wall to wall TV news and be almost completely unaware
of what is happening.

Andrew Marr raised the issue with the Chinese ambassador on his BBC1 programme last week, but that is about it.

As Jews, we of all people know the need for people to speak out — and it is good to see some rabbis using their pulpit and the President of the Board of Deputies writing to the ambassador.

But that is not enough. We are not enough. Governments are of course focused on the coronavirus pandemic but no Chinese official should be allowed to speak, anywhere, on any occasion, without being grilled on the murder of the Uighurs. Chinese embassies across the world should be the subject of mass protests.

Governments should be placing this at the top of their policy agendas. If we are willing to impose sanctions for economic abuse, it should go without saying that we do so for mass murder.

July 23, 2020 10:27

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