Politicians are on Tuesday grappling with the question of whether China is committing genocide against the Uighur people in the Xinjiang province.
The ACT Party last week announced it was filing a motion for Parliament to debate the issue, describing it as “an act of solidarity” with the Canadian and British Parliaments, which earlier this year called China’s oppression of about 1 million Uighurs crimes against humanity.
MPs are considering their positions within their respective political parties on whether to back the motion. The leaders of both Labour and National were coy ahead of their meetings.
Conflict with China is coming but I don’t think NZ should declare a Genocide inside China against the Uighur people.
The naked reality is that the appalling rapes, sterilisations, forced labour, beatings, abuse and killings that China is mercilessly dishing out to the Uighur’s simply doesn’t reach the technical threshold of Genocide.
The murderous intent alongside the naked hatred alongside the industrial slaughter is missing here, that’s not to downplay the human rights atrocities China is committing, but Genocide is very specific and what China is doing doesn’t reach the threshold of that most despicable of crimes.
What I do think we can argue is that China is committing a Cultural Genocide here. The purposeful mass migration tactics alongside the sterilisation campaigns, alongside punishment for expression of the culture all lend credibility to the claim of Cultural Genocide.
It may sound like a technicality, but the distinction is important. The Holocaust is such a unique horror in human civilisation that the comparison to it requires very testable thresholds, China is doing some appalling abuses against the Uighur’s but it’s not on the scale of evil that the final solution was.
By declaring a Cultural Genocide we clearly state our values and our independence, which is going to be essential when conflict comes because while we are appalled at the allegations against the Chinese, there is no way at all that we are going to allow Australian/US paranoia drag us into some bullshit military confrontation against China.
China and Russia are both authoritarian regimes who are struggling economically post Covid. Both have a need to reassert dominance upon their own populations via a symbolic and nationalistic conflict. Russia has massed troops near the Ukraine while China repeatedly tests Taiwan air space. For Russia, the Ukraine is their sphere of influence and for China, Taiwan is theirs. Invading either of them would generate the very nationalistic fervour each require to reassert their dominance over their domestic populace.
Are we seriously going to war against China if they invade Taiwan?
Australia and America will want a military response – but are we really going to get into this quagmire?
Do we even have the option of neutrality? What most Kiwis have no comprehension of is how RocketLabs’ secret 5 eyes space treaty makes us a secondary launch pad for the US Military. The reason NZ is buying sub hunting planes is as a counter to China sitting submarines off the east Coast to strike the launch site.
Rocketlabs makes us a legitimate military target, no one has explained that to NZers yet.
In whatever conflict is coming, Wellington decides New Zealand’s Tino rangatiratanga, NOT Washington and NOT Beijing.
Increasingly having independent opinion in a mainstream media environment which mostly echo one another has become more important than ever, so if you value having an independent voice – please donate here.
If you can’t contribute but want to help, please always feel free to share our blogs on social media