Purdue sends message to China

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Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind.


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First, the bad news: When a Purdue Chinese student posted an online letter praising the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests, other Chinese students harassed him, while in China. , his family was being visited by the Ministry of State Security.

Now the good news: after learning about what happened report in ProPublica, Purdue chairman Mitch Daniels called it.

He denounced what he called an “atmosphere of intimidation” directed against Zhihao Kong and his family. He said Purdue is “proud” that mainland Chinese students come to his campus, where they enjoy freedom of investigation and expression. But he insisted that “those who seek to deny these rights to others, let alone come to terms with foreign governments to suppress them, will have to continue their studies elsewhere.”

It is refreshing. Shortly after the Women’s Tennis Association suspended tournaments in China until they were convinced that a sexual assault complaint by a player, Peng Shuai, against a top Communist Party leader was under investigation. ‘full investigation – and the WTA is sure Ms. Peng can speak freely.

China wants to hush up any mention of June 4, 1989, the day Beijing crushed the students who raised a goddess of democracy there. This week in Hong Kong, three democracy champions – Jimmy Lai, Chow Hang-tung and Gwyneth Ho – were sentenced to prison terms for participating in or encouraging others to join the annual vigil on June 4 in Hong Kong.

In its intimidating confidence, the Chinese Communist Party seeks to enforce its censorship around the world. Western institutions that do business with China or accept Chinese students will have to decide whether they will be bullied. Thanks to Mr Daniels for letting Beijing know that his sovereignty does not extend to the Purdue campus.

Newspaper Editorial Report: Best and Worst of the Week by Kim Strassel, Bill McGurn, Jillian Melchior and Dan Henninger. Images: AFP via Getty Images Composite: Mark Kelly

Copyright © 2021 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8

Published in the print edition of December 18, 2021.

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Purdue sends message to China
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