Thanks to the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, all eyes are on China. And fortunately, some concerned observers are looking past the glitzy ice rinks, snowy slopes, and award podiums. Instead, they're paying close attention to what's going on beyond the scenes of NBC's carefully orchestrated and edited broadcasts. And what these observers are seeing is far from good news. It's the reason some are calling these China-hosted Olympics the "Genocide Games."
Bob Fu, a Senior Fellow for International Religious Freedom at FRC, was born and raised in mainland China. He was a student leader during the 1989 Tiananmen Square demonstrations for freedom and democracy. And today, he serves as president of the Texas-based human rights organization China Aid.
On "Washington Watch," Fu recounted that during those historic Tiananmen Square demonstrations, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) massacred 28 innocent people. And yet the International Olympic Committee rewarded that same CCP with the Beijing Olympics. The decision was based on the "promise" of better behavior from the Communist Party leaders, and the assurance that human rights and religious freedom will be improved.
"Today," Fu noted, "we see China's worst-ever religious persecution against Christians, against the Uyghur Muslims, against all people of faith. Yet we watched last week as the Olympics began, the IOC Committee chairman appearing alongside dictatorial Chinese political officials. And at the same time, a house church elder leader from Beijing's Holy Love Fellowship, Dr. Qinghai, was put under house arrest and will not be released until February 21 -- the closing day of the Olympics. Meanwhile, millions of Chinese house church leaders have received a message not to hold worship services during the Olympics."
Fu went on to say that on March 1, despite overly optimistic hopes, the world is not going to see a reformed China, a country that has been positively impacted by the Western world and has expanded freedoms following these Olympics. "In fact," he predicted, "following the Olympics, China will crack down on Christians even more severely."
Fu isn't alone in his prediction. According to China watchdog Bitter Winter, "In December 2021 new Administrative Measures for Internet Religious Information Services were promulgated by the State Administration of Religious Affairs... The Measures follow complaints by President Xi Jinping that prohibitions against using the Internet to 'advertise' religion are easily eluded, and more should be done to make sure that the Internet and social networks are not used as tools for 'religious propaganda.'"
These measures will come into force on March 1, 2022.
"The Chinese Communist Party has made China into a totalitarian digital tyranny," Fu went on to say. "Thanks to Apple's complicity, Chinese iPhone users are no longer able to download any Bible-related apps. Those apps are now totally removed from access by millions of Chinese users. And the Communist Party has already passed a new law declaring that as of March 1, if you organize an online prayer meeting or put a Bible verse on social media, you could be subject to charges of subversion of state power resulting in up to 5 to 15 years imprisonment. The situation for Christians is only going to get worse after the Olympics."
Although precise numbers can't be confirmed, experts realistically estimate that there are nearly 100 million Christians in China, and every one of those believers is subject to the CCP's hi-tech digital controls and surveillance. And ample evidence exists that the government is essentially censoring Bibles to make sure they are in sync with the CCP's dogma.
"It's called 'Sinicization,'" Fu says. "Basically, any Bible teaching, if it's to be allowed in a government-sanctioned church building, cannot be incompatible with socialist and communist ideology. And how could this happen? It is happening because the Chinese government demands that official church leaders pledge absolute loyalty to the CCP leader Xi Jinping."
"So," Fu concluded, "I would ask this question to Coca-Cola, to Nike, to NBC and to all the corporate sponsors of this political showcase: How could you, with a good conscience, continue to be enablers of this religious persecution? How could you be enablers of a genocide that is endangering one to three million Uyghur Muslims in concentration camps?"