Well-timed and leaked for Biden’s Asia tour, the Xinjiang Police Files have now provoked strong reactions in the US, UK and Germany. German chancellor Scholz also quoted them at the World Economic Forum at Davos. In the flood of reactions we want to discuss an article by Sascha Lobo in Der Spiegel:
“Xinjiang Police Files The monstrous human sieve
Economic dependence on China is a problem for western democracies: How bigoted are we if we balance the human rights of the Uyghurs with a reduction in our prosperity? “ https://www.spiegel.de/netzwelt/netzpolitik/xinjiang-police-files-das-monstroese-menschensieb-kolumne-a-77f8fbd1-dfd9-4c6a-b2ee-f029688ffe9a
Reading the Lobo text in which he proclaims China’s Uyghur policy to be the „first digital genocide“ gives the reader mixed feelings. The description of modern digital surveillance systems is interesting, as well as the distinction between behavior documentation and behavior prediction or prognosis and that these are not direct causalities, but algorithmic correlations. So far beyond the social bonus system. However, I find it biased that it is pretended that this should only be the case in China and that these surveillance systems were exported, while since Edward Snowden, NSA „scandals“, US police software for crime forecasting or films like Minority Report with Tom Cruise or Peter Thiel’s real Palantier it is obvious that these Orwellian surveillance and amss controll systems are also being promoted and promoted by the USA and the West ( and also exported). He doesn’t write anything about it. The alleged „first digital genocide“ serves to make him important as digital experts. Still, Lobo’s article is quite enlightening on dystopian methods of applications of surveillance and mass controll systems aslo in regard what “stability” means. Regarding the „genocide“ of the CP China and the Chinese against the Uyghurs: It is almost indisputable that the CP China uses cruel torture and re-education methods here and the head of the WUC describes it quite well, as do the other reports listed in the Bangkok Post .
Graphic on selected reports on the human rights situation in China’s Xinjiang region
Nevertheless, the critics of the CP China also restrict their concept of genocide/genocide again, that there is no genocide in Xinjiang like in Rwanda, like the Holocaust and Armenia, the UN term genocide is much more broader, sometimes varied by the Dalai Lama who speaks of „cultural genocide” and also Sascha Lobo’s concept of digital genocide is relativized again when he speaks of “ethnic cleansing”. Although this is possibly an (un)wanted term that makes Germans think of Milosevic, Serbian ethnic cleansing and Srebrenica, Joschka Fischer´s „Never again Auschwitz“ including the NATO war against Serbia and on the part of the Chinese still remembered of the bombing of their embassy in Belgrade for which they still swear vengeance on NATO and send a mourning and commemoration delegation to Serbia every year on the commemoration day and also want to see the cause of the war for Putin’s Ukraine war in NATO. But Lobo probably didn’t think that far in his stringing together of arbitrary, fashionable and sensational terms.
In any case, no critic of the CCP has yet raised the accusation that thousands, tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of Uyghurs would be systematically murdered and systematically killed by the CCP as part of its version of brutal Hanchinese-nationalist integration courses, not even Srebrenica was mentioned in this context. That shouldn’t belittle the matter either, since the brutal oppression of the Uyghurs is morally unacceptable. But as Sascha Lobo says: We are so bigoted because of China’s economic power, because that would be another dimension of the sanctions against China, which probably not even the USA could or will shoulder, certainly not the EU, but at best symbolically and selectively, maybe against VW and BASF and the reactions will be more verbal. It is also interesting that the first reaction of the USA and the EU and also Germany and Baerbock are not direct sanctions demands, but that they demand an investigation into the allegations and transparency of the Chinese government. It is also interesting in this context that the head of the World Uyghur Congress in Munich complains that he was never received by Merkel or Scholz, but also not by Baerbock. Therefore, Habeck’s paradigm „supply security comes before climate protection“ with regard to energy sanctions against Russia also applies to Baerbock and in the sense „supply security comes before human rights“ regarding China. The world is so bigoted and human rights are negotiable after all. And the head of the World Uyghur Congress is not a superstar like Selensky. And Urumqi is not Bucha, nor Srebrenica, nor Auschwitz. Especially since the Muslim umma does not support the Uyghurs either, neither the neo-Ottomanian Erdogans, the Gulf States, yes Pakistan and Saudi Arabia even consciously support the Chinese Communist Party and its Uyghur oppression. Most Muslim states want to be part of China’s New Silk Road and its economic power and the new chairman of the newly formed secular East Turkestan Awakening Movement (ETAM), which is presented as a new force in the World Uyghur Congress and as an alternative to the Islamist East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM) , which the USA has just taken off the terror list, also has no hopes in the Muslim Ummah, only in the West. But it is almost impossible that NATO or the USA will ever deliver heavy weapons to Xinjiang, only if a Sino-American war would break out,.
A China expert who doesn´t want to have his name published has another prognosis and commented:
„I’m afraid it’s about decoupling from China. And as much as I like to go to the USA, I have the suspicion that they were not only involved in Ukraine and that they undermined the German policy of an attempt at reconciliation between Ukraine and Russia (Biden put Victoria Fuck the EU Nuland back in post immediately after Trump took office: https://www.freitag.de/autoren/konrad-ege/fuck-the-eu-victoria-nuland-ist-zurueck
), but that the concept of genocide with reference to China also serves to get Germany out of China. The pressure to do so will intensify, and an Annalena as foreign minister is the ideal candidate to help implement the agenda, as she will soon have a credibility problem if she doesn’t. Detachment from Russia and China will mean that the standard of living in Germany will fall back behind that in the USA and we will line up there again if we want to do business. That’s what it’s about, not about Uyghurs, Tibetans or Ukrainians. Problems between the member countries of the EU are a small collateral damage. And the Lobos are just willing vicarious agents who don’t really know what they’re actually talking about when they write about Xinjiang, but believe they know exactly what they’re doing on the basis of these files. This is called tertiary knowledge in science. Read something somewhere but not think about the sources.”
It will remain interesting to see who is right. Decoupling-to what degree is that even possible in real life and policy? Both in the USA, as well as the EU and Germany? What would that mean for the world economy, the US economy and also the German economy? “Get in line” would probably be a euphemism, rather a serious slump in the global economy is to be expected, at best in trading blocs, especially with a severe recession and perhaps also a financial and famine crisis. So it will be seen whether John Mearsheimer’s offensive realism with his paradigm „Security trumps economy“ is right as a counter-position to the earlier free traders and globalists ala Clinton „It’s the economy, stupid“. It is more likely that Baerbock will verbally bang on the drum, but as in the case of the no fly zone for Ukraine, she will remain as rational as Habeck in his „supply security comes before climate protection“ and then deal with the Islamists, the Muslim Brotherhood and Qataris who support murder militias in Libya, Syria and elsewhere and are in an axis with neo-Ottoman Erdogan and sees the state broadcaster Al Jazerra as pro-Western and critical and not as an Islamist propaganda machine. But Baerbock also behaved very well with Lavrov before the Ukraine war, if you compare this with the announcements made by her during the election campaign. Perhaps there will a symbolic action for the release of a Uyghur activist based on the model of Denis Yücel that can be used by the media, as in the case of Erdogan, and then you have a diplomatic “victory” and then be silent. The question is more whether the Chinese would go along with it and whether the USA would be satisfied with it. It is quite possible that there will be further polarization between the world power USA and China, which sees itself as a future world power, to which Baerbock must react in order not to lose her credibility. But there is not only Baerbock and Habeck and Lindner, but above all Scholz as Chancellor and he ultimately decides or hesitates so that even his “un- action” would be another action.