torsdag 24. juni 2021

Bulldozing Culture: China’s Systematic Destruction of Uyghur Heritage Reveals Genocidal Intent

The powerful testimonies presented at the Uyghur Tribunal in London on June 4-7, 2021, included discussion of China’s systematic destruction of Uyghur heritage. Newcastle anthropologist Jo Smith Finley spoke of an “identity castration”: the suffocation and destruction of all aspects of Uyghur living culture — including its material foundations.

This assault on heritage reveals the genocidal intent behind the Chinese campaign, and this was a key consideration when the British Parliament recently decided to condemn China’s actions as a genocide. This goes with other aspects such as the mass separation of families and the mass sterilizations, which are listed explicitly in the U.N. Genocide Convention(Article 2) as five basic examples of genocidal actions — and which have already clinched the case that what is happening is indeed a genocide.

As part of its multi-faceted campaign of terror, the Chinese regime is systematically bulldozing the material foundations of the history and identity of the Uyghurs and the other Xinjiang peoples — but, because cultural erasure (or, “cultural genocide”) isn’t included in the Convention, they have not often been discussed together with the other aspects. They should be.