Troublemaker

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9780970402998: Troublemaker

The world was captivated in the summer of 1995, when Harry Wu, a Chinese-born American citizen, was detained at the Chinese border and then later formally arrested on spying charges. To the autocrats of the Chinese Communist Party Beijing, Harry Wu, is nothing but a convicted criminal and spy, an unrepentant counterrevolutionary who spent nineteen years in labor camps and has taken revenge by secretly entering China under false names to steal state secrets.

To the rest of the world, Harry Wu is an extraordinarily courageous man, one of the most prominent expatriate Chinese dissidents, whose Laogai research Foundation publicizes abuses in the Chinese forced labor camps.

For sixty-six days, the world waited to see if Harry Wu would be sent back to prison. His detention was considered so important that both houses of the U. S. Congress passed resolutions condemning the Chinese authorities and urging President Clinton to use every diplomatic means to win his freedom. Only after his mock trial and expulsion from the country did Hillary Rodham Clinton announce that she would attend the United Nations women’s conference held in Beijing.

Wu has returned to China secretly four times, compiling written and videotaped information on the extensive prison system and many other abuses.

In Troublemaker, Wu tells why the Chinese authorities rightly denounce him as the country’s "No. 1 troublemaker," and put him on a secret most wanted list of enemies. He explains why he willingly returns to a country whose dictatorial government wishes only to silence or do away with him.

The heart of Troublemaker is Harry Wu’s story of his experiences in captivity – the small kindnesses of young guards who listened to his tales of Michael Jordan and American automobiles; his hunger strike; his secret prison diary’; and the solace he took from coded words from an American diplomat. As this book is also a love story, he tells how he dared not think of his new Taiwanese wife waiting for him back in California.

Troublemaker is an unforgettable work of courage and moral witness.

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Review:

Harry Wu, China's most prominent dissident exile in the West, spent 19 years condemned as a counterrevolutionary in the laogai, his country's equivalent of the Soviet gulag system of forced labor camps. After escaping to California in 1985 he began a tireless campaign to publicize human rights abuses within the Chinese prison system, including the harvesting of organs from prisoners, and profiteering from forced labor supported by World Bank subsidies and U.S. importing of prison-made goods. Through Vecsey, a columnist for the New York Times, Wu recounts his incessant and intrepid troublemaking, including his clandestine trips back into China, on one of which he was caught, charged with spying, and deported after U.S. pressure for his release.

From the Back Cover:

"Compelling . . . Wu's passion never flags."
--San Francisco Chronicle

"In quick, punchy style, [Wu] explains . . . the demons that drive him."
--The Washington Post Book World

"[WU] IS A HERO OF OUR TIMES, AND HIS STORY DESERVES TO BE HEARD."
--The Economist

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