This story is about a young Chinese man, just like any young person, who had ambitious dreams to succeed, to become someone, perhaps someone famous, but his dreams were crushed after the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) incarcerated him for 22 years. His tragic life story serves as a lesson for many who still have an illusion about the CCP.
In 1951, when Qu Xiao was 19 years old, his father was run over by a Soviet military truck and killed on New Year’s Day. He received no compensation for the death of his father and furthermore was denounced as a rightist and an anti-Soviet during the anti-rightist campaign in 1957.
Subscribe to our Newsletter!
Receive selected content straight into your inbox.
He was labeled an anti-Soviet based on the speculation that he had animosity toward the Soviets due to the death of his father. In 1958, he was sent for re-education to a labor camp, and during the Cultural Revolution, Qu was sentenced to prison, accused of being a counterrevolutionary. After spending 22 years in labor camp and prison, he was finally released in 1979.
Despite the groundless charges and the brutal persecution by the CCP for 22 years, Qu was brainwashed into loving the Party. After he was released, the CCP recognized his talent for public speaking and deployed him to give public speeches to students in universities. Qu Xiao, who was then the deputy dean of Yingkou Teaching College, became most popular. His emotional public speaking influenced a generation of Chinese students.
In total, Qu made 2,500 speeches to young people nationwide in singing the praises of the Communist Party.
In the late 1980s, the CCP dispatched Qu on a speaking tour to the overseas Chinese and Chinese students in the U.S. for promoting his love for the Party and bolstering his “patriotic passion” for the CCP. Taiwan’s well-known pro-communist professor in contemporary history, Wong Young-tsu, attended the first speech.
Qu was about to be escorted out when he described in tears about the tortures he had endured for 22 years in prison. But he changed his tune unexpectedly and declared: “When a mother makes mistakes, can you stop loving her? The Communist Party is our mother. A child will not and should not bear grudges against his mother, even when she has wrongfully beaten him!” This rhetoric, if delivered in a closed society like China, would undoubtedly be well-received, but in the United States, this was a catastrophic failure for Qu Xiao.
At this point, Wong Young-tsu, who was enraged by the speech, could no longer hold his anger; he raised his hand to speak. The audience expected him to echo his agreement as he always did, as a pro-Communist. To the contrary, he said: “Professor Qu Xiao’s speech is a confession of blood and tears! A young scholar was thrown in prison for 22 years for no reason at all. I had heard similar recounts when I was in Taiwan, but none were as real and outrageous as this!”
Professor Wong continued: “If you take communism as your mother, what kind of mother is this? How could you still call her your mother after she abused her children for such a long time? Even a stepmother wouldn’t be so cruel. How could she still demand loyalty from a child who is mistreated by her? In any civilized society, a mother who abuses her child like this would be punished by the law.”
Professor Wong’s words stabbed right into Qu Xiao’s heart and awakened him from a twisted lie he has been telling everyone all along.
A Chinese official, Liu Zhonghai, who was also present at the speech, observed the situation and decided that the speaking tour be halted. Qu’s speaking career ended shortly after and he realized that he was of no further use to the regime.
After returning to China, Qu Xiao rarely made public appearances. In 1991, he suffered a stroke and lost his ability to speak until his death in 2003.
Translated by Chua BC and edited by Angela