A little over a week ago Chen escaped from house arrest and found safe haven in the U.S. embassy. Now he is in a hospital in China outside of the U.S. embassy. But now the reasons why Chen left the embassy are in question. Apparently the U.S. embassy and Chen Guangcheng, the blind Chinese activist, have two different versions of the events that culminated with Chen leaving the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. Chen says that he was pressured by U.S. embassy officials to leave the embassy and the officials at the U.S. embassy deny that allegation. Chen has also said that the embassy officials got him to leave by making promises they have failed to keep. He also said that he requested that he and his family be given refuge in America. The embassy is denying that too. U.S. officials say that they offered Chen asylum. Ya got that, only Chen, not his family. He would have to leave his family in China. God knows what the Chinese might do to his family in retaliation. Officials also said that they offered him a deal which would give Chen and his family partial freedom in China. Why for heaven sakes would the U.S. force Chen to make the choice to be separated from his family or have him and his family stay in China to hope for the best, that none of the family would be persecuted again? That the Chinese government would actually honor this agreement? This is ludicrous!
Today Hillary Clinton and Timothy Geithner gathered in Beijing for a summit on geopolitical and economic issues. Did the Obama administration just throw Chen under the bus because of these talks with the Chinese government? Come on Obama administration. The United States is not supposed to stand up for partial freedom or throw those being threatened and persecuted under the bus all for the sake of policy decisions and playing nice with China, a government which has committed numerous human rights violations against its people. Chen has expressed that he is disappointed with the U.S. and President Barack Obama. I'm sorry Chen. Yes, I am disappointed with the way the Obama government has handled this situation thus far. This is yet one more example of the Obama "change" that we must reverse come this November election. The United States needs to be a beacon of light again which stands up for freedom everywhere and not a dim speck of light which stands with the oppressor and not the oppressed, which the Obama administration seems to be doing now. I pray for Chen and his family, so that they may stay safe as they go through these trials.
From The Atlantic:
Chen said: "The embassy kept lobbying me to leave and promised to have people stay with me in the hospital. But this afternoon as soon as I checked into the hospital room, I noticed they were all gone," he said. "I'm very disappointed at the U.S. government. ... I don't think [U.S. officials] protected human rights in this case."
When asked why he had left the embassy rather than staying and perhaps seeking asylum, Chen seemed to blame the embassy officials. "At the time I didn't have a lot of information. I wasn't allowed to call my friends from inside the embassy. I couldn't keep up with news so I didn't know a lot of things that were happening," he said.
Chen agreed when Jiang asked him, "If you stay in China, is there no future?" He also said that he had tried calling two U.S. embassy officials "numerous times" but that no one had answered. "I told the embassy I would like to talk to Rep. [Chris] Smith but they somehow never managed to arrange it. I feel a little puzzled."
He described the Chinese police's brutal treatment of his wife while he was in detention, which appears to have been a tool for coercing his departure from the embassy. "[My wife] was tied to a chair by police for two days. Then they carried sticks to our home, threatening to beat her to death," he said, adding that they told her she would be sent home to Shandong province and beaten there if Chen did not leave the embassy.
The activist pleaded with the U.S. to remove him and his family from China. "I want them to protect human rights through concrete actions. We are in danger. If you can talk to Hillary [Clinton], I hope she can help my whole family leave China," he said. "I would like to say to [President Obama]: Please do everything you can to get our whole family out." More here.