Saturday, 24 October 2020
The Vatican's deal with China has its faults. But its renewal has annoyed Mike Pompeo. So there is that. In Her time, the Church has allowed bishops to be selected by Protestant monarchs, by Orthodox Tsars, by the Ottoman Caliph of every Sunni Muslim in the world, and by Catholic monarchs who were nevertheless at war with the Papal States. Right now, the bishops in Alsace-Lorraine are selected by a French President who is sworn to secularism. These experiences have been mixed. But nothing in the arrangement with China is any worse. And the Church has always survived.
For decades, some of us have been fighting the very lonely fight against British funding of the Chinese population control programme, funding that the new China-haters do not wish to end, and a programme of which they broadly approve in principle. Uyghur women are forcibly sterilised because Chinese women in general are forcibly sterilised. Uyghur children are aborted on a staggering scale because Chinese children in general are aborted on a staggering scale, like British and American children. We pay for this, we have been paying for it forever, and the people who have suddenly discovered a "Uyghur genocide" want us to carry on paying for it.
No one denies the privations of the Uyghur. But of their "genocide", precious little evidence is ever produced. Those who expect us to take it on simple trust also claimed that 100,000 military age males had been murdered in Kosovo, that the attacks of 11th September 2001 had come from Afghanistan, that there had been weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, that those weapons had been capable of deployment within 45 minutes, that Saddam Hussein had been feeding people into a giant paper shredder, that he had been attempting to obtain uranium from Niger, that a genocide had been imminent in Benghazi, that Gaddafi had been feeding Viagra to his soldiers in order to encourage mass rape, that he had intended to flee to Venezuela, that Assad had gassed Ghouta as if that were an undisputed fact, and that a nerve agent had been used at Douma.
They still claim, on no basis whatever, that there is such a thing as an Iranian nuclear weapons programme. They are entirely unable to explain what is, in their own terms, Novichok's death rate either of one person ever and then long after the event, or quite possibly of no one at all. And they are fanatical supporters, not to say paid beneficiaries, of this coal and lithium-rich country's wholly unnecessary relationship with Saudi Arabia, which is the only country in the world to inspire, fund and direct acts of terrorism right here on the streets of the United Kingdom. Every bullet sold to Saudi Arabia may as well be fired directly at a London pedestrian.
If these people are concerned about either Christians or Muslims in China, then they never have been before, and China is the only place where they are. Killing huge numbers of Muslims, while unleashing the savage persecution of Christians as such, has certainly never bothered them anywhere else, and it continues not to do so. Their rank hypocrisy about the sterilisation of Uyghur women but not of Chinese women in general, is matched by their rank hypocrisy about the lot of the Muslim women in Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf monarchies, and about the fate of the Muslim women whom they have handed over to the forces that have been emboldened or created by the removal of Saddam, of Gaddafi, and attemptedly of Assad.