Chinese “Vocational Training Centers:” The New Concentration Camps?

Many questions are raised by the camps where China's Uyghur population are being "retrained"

No 5 Army Film & Photographic Unit, Oakes, H (Sgt) [Public domain]

History is repeating itself. During World War II Jews, homosexuals and gypsies were put in the concentration caps set everywhere in Europe.  Now in China, people who just believe in a God are arrested and tortured.

They call them “vocational training centers,” but what happens in there is hell. With the purpose of re-educating the Uyghurs Muslims, what everyone thought would never happen again is a stark reality: concentration camps have been located in China since 2014, established by General Secretary Xi Jinping’s administration.

Most of the Muslims that are taken there never had a trial for the crimes they were accused of and they are mainly accused of extremism and terrorism.  In August 2018, the United Nations’ human rights council said that it had received many disturbing  reports that 1 million Uyghurs in China are being held  in “re-education camps.” Reports have continued through 2019.

Chinese concentration camps are built like schools, where millions of people have been wrongly placed. The reason: their religion.  According to the Chinese government, it could cause terrorism and rebellions.

All of this is actually a front  for eliminating every religious group in the country.  Initially it began as a new and innovative system of schools. Later it became a real system of concentration camps where the prisoners are tortured on the daily in order to force them to abandon their religion. There are many witnesses that claim that the Chinese government handcuffed them, tied their legs, then threw them in frozen pits. Sometimes they practice brainwashing, electroshock and humiliation, teaching them the communist propaganda, or force them to take experimental medicines that cause heavy bleeding and health problems. Since the goal is to eliminate their religious beliefs, prisoners were forced to break the rules of Islam, such as eating pork and drinking alcohol. Escaped detainees have reported widespread sexual torture, including forced abortions, forced use of contraceptive devices, sterilization, and rape, which causes many prisoners to attempt suicide.

They are called “vocational training centers” because they should be schools where “students” can learn proper behavior and give up their religion. In reality these places are anything but normal schools.

Incredibly enough, out of 89 nations, 54 support China’s action, since according to them they have taught the right mentality and prevented the country and the surrounding states from terrorism and extremism. Algeria, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan were initially in favor of the “vocational training centers,” but in the face of full disclosure of their actions they have withdrawn their support. These concentration camps still exist is due to the fact that they still have the support of a number of powerful countries, and, if any other state tries to fight them, a new World War would begin. The United Kingdom and the United States are the most concerned nations,  and organizations such as the United Nations and the European Union are attempting to convince the supporting states to change their mind in order to defeat this inhuman system. The Chinese Government denies any and all allegations that such camps exist.

After World War II everyone thought that concentration camps could never happen again. Unfortunately, after some years, history repeats itself.

Ming Cunniff, a freshmen at Lafayette born in China, has strong feelings about this situation. “What is going on is really disappointing and wrong and usually I don’t feel really close to my country, but what is going on involves several countries and innocent, human lives. I can’t understand why the news and the media never talk about it, and I honestly discovered what is happening some days ago on Instagram, while it’s from 2014 that these atrocities take place in my hometown.”

The government claims that what they are doing is for the country and for its safety, but they hide these places for years and always avoid the matter on media. So, why do they still do it? And why is no one actually doing anything to help those people?

Jodi Consoli, a teacher at Lafayette says, “It’s happening. It’s happening again for real. The problem is that it is basically a matter of diplomacy and the other countries can’t do anything because if they intervene a war would probably begin. Actually, these camps do not surprise me at all since China is a country where the state rules, since it is controlled by a few who must keep their power. The main reason why they are trying to teach their prisoners how to be Chinese is that if the power is in a few’s hands, it is easier for them to keep the power, while if government’s power is distributed between more people, protests cannot really change the situation. Substantially, the less power  for the people there is, the less the government worries.”