Olympic Games? Or is the Chinese Communist Party up to its Same Old Games?

As Beijing is set to hold the Olympic Games, some might believe that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) views this as a sporting and cultural extravaganza, but quite the contrary, it sees the Games as a prime opportunity to further its political ends.

If one searches the Internet with the two Chinese keywords "Olympics" and "political task," one will find a bevy of articles about the Chinese government's viewing the Olympics as a political opportunity. One can easily see that Beijing, Tianjin, and other provinces and cities have taken on the Olympic Games as a political task that is "important and honorable" and "above all else."

In many senses, preparing for the Olympics has become another political movement, something the CCP is very adept at carrying out. However, this one is different from past political movements. Whereas in the past they publicly targeted a group for persecution, this time the Communist regime has been doing it secretly. The regime first excluded a total of eleven categories and forty-three types of individuals from the Olympic Games. And then at the end of last year, the regime started a new round of mass-arrests of Falun Gong practitioners and others who want to safeguard their human rights. The Minghui website [the Chinese version of the Falun Gong related Clearwisdom website] has collected 1,878 cases in which Falun Gong practitioners were arrested without any legal procedures under the guise of protecting the Olympics, just in the first ten weeks of 2008.

As compared to the Party's past suppressions, this form of hidden persecution is more sinister. The CCP still positions itself as a promoter of the Olympic spirit, deceiving the world, even as it takes blatant steps to crush human rights across China. The Chinese Communist Party then turns around and uses the Games as a way to legitimize its power, a "justification" for its political housecleaning, thus enabling it to be even more relentless in persecuting its own people.

Fundamentally, the Party and the Chinese people at large view the Games differently. For ordinary Chinese people, some feel that holding the Olympic Games can enhance a sense of national pride, and others see it as a way to highlight China's rise. Some just like to watch sports, and some feel that this is a rare economic opportunity.

But for the CCP, its fundamental objective is to use this huge international event to consolidate its power. That is, the Chinese regime is hoping to use the Games to prove the legitimacy of its one-party dictatorship.

To this point, the Beijing Municipal Committee sent out a notice declaring that the success of the Beijing Olympics is closely tied to "the Party's influence and prestige." While the CCP, on the one hand, opposes Western countries talking about human rights and other issues (critical of those who do so as "turning the Olympics into a political event"), the CCP has in fact done exactly that itself. It has turned the Olympics into a political movement inside China. It has tried its best to fool the outside world and at the same time, it has staged widespread persecutions of those could expose its crimes during the Olympic Games.

It has taken this as an opportunity to eliminate dissidents, silence opposition, and persecute good people.

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