WASHINGTON, D.C.—On Sunday afternoon a former Chinese intelligence officer, Mr. Li Fengzhi, formally announced his withdrawal from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) while standing outside the Chinese Embassy in Washington, D.C.
In a small ceremony, the director of the Global Quit CCP Center, Dr. Gao Dawei, issued a certificate formally recognizing Mr. Li’s withdrawal.
The events outside the Embassy on Sunday were the very public enactment of the withdrawal from the CCP Li had first announced on March 11.
Afterwards, Li appeared at a rally at MacPherson Square in downtown D.C. and spoke about his decision to quit. His remarks follow.
I do not consider myself as having a noble character or great moral courage. However, as a man of basic conscience, as an ordinary Chinese, and as a former Intelligence Officer for the Ministry of State Security (MSS), I didn’t seem to have a choice. The only thing I could do was publicly renounce the CCP.
This year marks the twentieth anniversary of the June 4 incident. I was a sophomore in 1989 and also participated in the protest rallies. Though not a student leader, I was an activist. Seeing how many ordinary folks welcomed and supported the rallies, I sigh sadly in my mind. Our country could have become one in which people could speak and live freely. Yet, it has been so oppressed under the CCP’s rule, and freedom has become a crime.
That was a turning point for my understanding of the CCP. After June 4, when the regime started the crackdown on dissidents, I was not implicated because of protection from two teachers. After graduation, when I could choose between the criminal police and the State Security police, I chose to join the MSS without any hesitation. At the time I was still very naďve and thought that the MSS was responsible for protecting the country’s security.
Nevertheless, my personal experience working in the MSS proved to me that China’s state security is far less important than the security of the CCP. For example, in the intelligence manual of the MSS, which has a top security classification, it states that politics is the first and most important agenda and means.
More and more manpower and resources of the MSS have been used against Chinese dissidents and religious groups in and out of China, and have damaged the true interest of the Chinese people to a great extent. This is something I myself and many of my coworkers did not like and could not get over.
For example, in the MSS there are designated offices that target Falun Gong [practitioners], and Christian and other religious organizations; these organizations claim they are for the sake of social stability, while they are actually run and controlled by the “610 Office.”
Like many other political and legal departments in China, the “610 Office” has an unlimited budget. It is actually a secret office run by a small clique of the CCP. It has power over other government and Party organizations and is at the service of some few specific individuals.
The “610 Office’s” role is absolutely the opposite of safeguarding the country’s safety. Originally, there were arrangements for the maintenance of peace and stability. Many people in the security system do not like the “610 Office.” In particular, they don’t like its emphasis on the so-called political agendas and on operating beyond the nation’s political and legal system, which is just totally not right. This has greatly damaged China’s system as a whole and also hurt Chinese society deeply.
I have a relative who used to practice Falun Gong. She used to have liver disease, but her condition became much improved after she started practiced Falun Gong. However, she was forced to give up because the CCP started persecuting Falun Gong soon after she started the practice. I could not see how she could have threatened the society, country, or the CCP at all.
Like other religious groups, such a group of people who persist in practicing Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance should have become the foundation of social stability, yet they have turned into the CCP’s number one enemy in China. This is something even people inside the MSS cannot understand, and something that they cannot openly express.
Some of them even tried to research why Falun Gong has committed such a “heinous crime” or tried to understand Christian or other religions that hold different views from the CCP. But when they did so, they did it in fear because they were afraid that they would be severely criticized or punished when they were discovered.
Because I worked inside the MSS for many years, I therefore know a lot of truths that others do not know about. The most unbearable thing for me is that the CCP put its interest above the interests of the people and the country. The Party has built a ruling system that penetrates wide and deep in the country and has a bloody way of operation; it therefore has lost the ability to correct itself. To me, the CCP absolutely is not capable of correcting or changing itself, because the bottom line is its fundamental nature is one that is bad and evil.
The misery of Chinese minorities and poor people has also struck my conscience. The Party’s twisted culture, which existed in the state security system, made me depressed. I was also aware that my ways of thinking and unconscious behavior could bring about real and potential dangers and could harm my children and family. So I had no choice but to make the decision to leave the MSS.
I knew I had to give up a lot of things when I decided to leave the national security system. I just couldn't remain silent any longer. The suffering those victims are experiencing keeps wringing my heart.
In fact, the CCP does not represent China. The CCP has brought harm to China, including China’s great tradition and culture. Withdrawing from the CCP is a truly patriotic deed, and an effort to save China. Standing up against the CCP is the best way to show my loyalty to my country. My father has long recognized the CCP’s evilness and anxiously hoped that for the sake of Chinese people, justice, freedom, and future generations, I could step forward courageously.
I therefore openly step forward and withdraw from the CCP and declare that I sever myself from the CCP. I do so to fulfill my father’s wish, and in return for his love for his son and grandchildren. Therefore, openly renouncing the CCP, to me, is a way to show my loyalty to the country, my filial piety toward my father, and my instinctive love for my children.
I think, for a Chinese, one of the best ways to show your love for China and for yourself is to quit the CCP. These years, I have been struggling in great pain and self contradiction, living with the feelings of hope, illusion, fear, inconvenience, and even hatred mingled together. When I left the MSS a few years ago, I hoped I would change my way of living, but I was treated as a traitor. I became a typical example of a traitor and received nation-wide criticism in the national security system. My colleagues, friends, and relatives were implicated. However, since I openly announced my withdrawal from the CCP, my heart has become much more peaceful. I know many Chinese people have chosen to quit the CCP. This has caused the CCP to panic. It also has brought hope to the suffering Chinese people.
I realized that it is the CCP that hinders the development of China. I don't want to wait any longer to step up, even though it's a hard decision for me.
Today, I openly stood up; I hope the society would see that there are still righteous voices even inside the CCP’s MSS. I know many of my friends, colleagues, and higher-ups are very kind and noble-minded persons. Only because of the pressure of making a living, are they forced to stay inside the CCP. In their hearts, they do not accept the CCP and use their own ways to express their discontent. And they may even be waiting for the right time.
I am willing and happy to be the first. Someone has to be the first. All I wish for is that what I’m doing now could help, inspire, and encourage other people.
You also shoulder the great responsibility of reviving the Chinese nation, safeguarding and promoting the Chinese tradition and culture. Our future generations count on you. Please take action as you see appropriate, keep in mind that you bear people’s earnest expectations, and remember the special role you can play and the special contribution you can make.
I hold great hope for the kind people who are deceived by the CCP. However, at the same time, I also want to remind the CCP’s accomplices both inside and outside China that an unjust cause finds little support, and that the evil never wins. One should choose one’s own future carefully. It is not too late to pull back from the brink now. For those who continue to side with the evil and to do evil, eventually misfortune and harm will befall them.