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Chinese New Year--Celebrate or not

January 23, 2012 is Chinese New Year.

January 23, 2012 is the 11th Anniversary of the Self Immolation/False Fire in China.

January 23, 2012 is the Tenth Anniversary of singing"Falun Dafa Hao" in Tiananmen Square, Beijing.

Chinese New Year is usually a time of joyful family celebrations, dragon dancing, and feasting.

However, January 23 is a black day in the memory of more than 100 million Falun Gong practitioners in all countries of the world and for all Chinese people who were deceived in China.

On January 23, 2001, the Chinese Communist Party's mouthpiece-newspaper stated that five Falun Gong practitioners set themselves on fire in Tiananmen Square. The then CCP leader, Jiang Zemin, immediately delivered videos of those poor people in flames to every head of state in the world and media to promote his orders to persecute and eradicate practitioners of Falun Gong saying that they were criminals among other things.

Reporters later proved that the people involved never practiced Falun Gong. This incident became known as "False Fire". It is chilling to watch and more chilling to realize that it was a set up by the CCP who controls the Chinese government and media.

This Chinese New Year 2012 is the year of the dragon.

The CCP, China's Communist Party, is called the red dragon. Blood red flags signal its presence. It tells lies to deceive people and creates incidents to make people hate each other, like the above self-immolation/false fire incident. The red dragon's past history is filled with violence, struggle and death. Its Cultural Revolution 1966 to 1977 systematically destroyed China's ancient culture and spiritual beliefs and caused the deaths of over 80 million Chinese people. Its latest evil, the persecution of Falun Gong also known as Falun Dafa, officially started on July 20, 1999 and is ongoing today.

 In June 2000 during the first shocking year of the persecution, nine Falun Gong women were found battered to death. To be a voice for the loss of their young vital lives, snuffed out by the CCP because they were true to their beliefs, I sat 24 hours a day for 10 days and nights in front of the Chinese Consulate in my city.

 As the CCP persecution escalated beyond China, a 'Worldwide SOS Walk' let people in the world know the truth about the persecution and the peacefulness of Falun Gong. For four and a half months I wore a white banner with blue letters 'Falun Dafa Truthwalk SOS  SOS' and traveled from Portugal to Turkey, visiting about a dozen countries and 21 cities. Everyone I met was shocked to hear about the persecution of people like me who practice Falun Gong in China. Everyone I met wanted to support the courage of the Falun Gong practitioners in China and wanted them to keep standing strong in 'truthfulness, compassion, tolerance' for all human beings in the world. Their common wish was to tell them to please never stop.

 My heart was so touched by all the good wishes that I decided to finish my part of the "Worldwide SOS Walk" in China.

The morning I arrived in Tiananmen Square was sunny and cold. I dropped my blue jacket to the ground so the white banner I wore would shine in the sun. I raised my arms with my hands open to the heavens and sang "Falun Dafa Hao, Falun Dafa Hao" (Falun Dafa is great). Two young police guards were pacing in front of the flag and I followed along singing. A crowd gathered in a semi circle around us. A man in a leather jacket ran towards me and tried to pull my arms down but he could not. I kept singing. He pulled me into the center of the Square. My voice rang clear, strong and true for all those who could not be heard and all those who stand up for 'truthfulness, compassion, tolerance'. I felt as if I was singing on the stage of the world letting everyone know that Falun Dafa is truly good.

The man in the leather jacket stopped pulling me, grabbed the white banner and started to rip it off my jacket. ( I had sewn it on). I just kept singing. He pulled me back the way we had come and pushed me into a waiting patrol car. The police drove me to the police station.

They asked me why I had come. I told them they were killing my Falun Gong family and I came to tell them to stop the persecution. I told the woman interrogator that it was impossible to eradicate Falun Gong. It makes people peaceful and is rooted in people's hearts and minds. She might as well try to stop the sun from shining or the rain from raining. Falun Dafa is simply the law of all life as it is based on universal virtues.

 I asked her how she could support CCP orders to torture her own people and break up families and spread lies. She asked me what lies? I said the self-immolation was a lie. She said she was there. I whispered "Then you know the truth". Her hands trembled.

They kept me overnight and I saw tv programs vilify and distort stories about Falun Gong practitioners. It seemed that the whole country was on a hate campaign. The police escorted me to a plane the next morning and I kept repeating "Falun Dafa Hao" to everyone I walked by. Many smiled back and some gave me a secret thumbs up. I was banned from returning to China for five years.That was ten years ago.

The persecution of Falun Gong in China has raged for these last 13 years and is even worse than I imagined it to be according to other reports from Amnesty International and revealed in the book "Bloody Harvest: the killing of Falun Gong for their organs". Falun Gong practitioners in China still practice the five Falun Gong exercises and live their lives by truthfulness, compassion and tolerance. They have never stopped no matter how difficult and they know that eventually justice will prevail.

This Chinese New Year 2012, through my tears, I wish you peace and freedom in your life!

Connie Chipkar
Toronto, ON

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