CCTV+BATIE GHAR（巴铁之家）:Liu Xin, anchor of China Global Television Network (CGTN) used strong evidence to slam the article published on the Foreign Policy, “Xinjiang’s New Slavery,” on Friday.
Liu’s commentary is as follows:
Next, let’s turn to an article published on ForeignPolicy.com. The headlines spares no punches, reading “Xinjiang’s New Slavery.”
Gentlemen, ladies and gentlemen, “Xinjiang’s New Slavery,” the article argues that people in Xinjiang have become slaves of the Communist Party.
No quotation marks used here, mind that, again, there is a distinct lack of evidence here, but I’ll come on to the details later.
First, I would like to look at the term “slavery.” When I think of a slave, imagine someone who has been tied up in handcuffs, forced and beaten to work for no money. Imagine what happened in the United States, then you know what slaves are really about. Or what is happening in present day the UK when people smuggle themselves or being smuggled across the English Channel to work, in slavery in the UK, these are slavery.
Now, this piece doesn’t offer any corroboration, after referring to those in Xinjiang as “slaves.” The piece acknowledges that there is data to support Beijing’s claims that people are graduating from the vocational training centers and getting jobs.
However, it then succeeds by claiming that “Beijing’s motivations are to subdue its northwestern minorities predicated upon a perverse and intrusive combination of coercive labor, intergenerational separation, and complete social control.”
My goodness, I run out of breath saying these big words, I don’t even know what they mean after all of these big words piled up together.
It says, the article I mean, China is doing this by encouraging companies from the east to open factories in the region, but why is portrayed as a negative thing and degraded as “perverse?” Our investment and job opportunities are not needed there? Or would it be preferable to let unemployment and radicalization take hold and let the death from terrorism continue to rise in Xinjiang? Answer these questions.
Now, the article then goes on to criticize the wages of some of those who have been provided with work.
To do this, it has used a publicly available spreadsheet from Xinjiang’s Yarkant county.
They said they’ve looked at data from 148 who have now graduated from the vocational training centers.
The article reads, “two-thirds only earned 800 RMB per month (about 100 U.S. dollars) and the average stated wage was 1,228 RMB (about 175 U.S. dollars) a month — around the level of the minimum wage in the region.”
I would like to point out the size of the sample — 148 people with a population of almost 22 million, is this hardly a representative sample size that holds up to scrutiny?
Yet the articles use this kind of so-called “evidence” to argue that the people in Xinjiang are being made “slaves.” People who are being paid a wage, although low, maybe, that needs to be looked into, but they are being paid a wage for their work, and that doesn’t seem like slavery to me.
The piece also called for consumers around the world to boycott products that are produced in the region.
However, this is in direct contradiction to the Better Cotton Initiative, the world’s largest cotton standard, who recently said ‘a continued presence and engagement in Xinjiang will continue to benefit local farmers.’
Mind the words, “continue” meaning it has been, it is and it will continue to benefit, and the word “benefit”, it doesn’t say “in slave”, it says “benefit”. Why does this initiative makes such statements? They clearly have looked into the situation and made their own conclusion — it will continue to benefit the local farmers.
Well, this article by Foreign Policy does acknowledge this, but continues to claim that the involvement of foreign industry would only be to the detriment of workers in Xinjiang. Even after the Better Cotton Initiative argues that foreign companies doing business in Xinjiang will benefit the local farmer