The Domestic Security Department （国内安全保护支队）is a branch of the police force within the Ministry of Public Security, specializing in collecting intelligence, infiltrating and dealing with political dissidents, human rights activists, petitioners, religious groups as well as “subversive” activities in the cultural, educational and economics domains. It is a massive, secretive and omnipotent security apparatus within the giant police machine of the PRC. [Read more about the Domestic Security Department, or DSD, here.]
The following internal document, a paper written by a local Domestic Security Officer from Shaoxing city, Zhejiang Province, was leaked into Chinese cyberspace recently, and reveals many details about how this secretive police force works day-to day at the local level to control Chinese society. The original passage is excerpted from a book entitled Collected Essays on Domestic Security that is circulated internally within the Domestic Security Department (DSD). CDT translated the selected text here; thanks to the translator who wishes to remain anonymous. [This is Part II of III. Part I is here.]
B. Rely on ground-level organizations, implement defense and control mechanisms
[We have worked to] implement on the ground level of the Party government organization the DSD’s work of putting in place measures to defend against and control those within the DSD’s scope. The DSD departments [have worked to achieve] through specialized guidance the actual ability of base-level organizations to effectively defend against and control people and events of special interest. In this regard the work of Zhuji city, origin of “the experience at Fengqiao”, is especially rich. Perhaps what is most striking is their system of “Four Firsts, Four Earlys”: (1) Persist in putting inspection first; discover the seeds of discord early. This involves ground-level organizations and the DSD departments using foundational detection, directional detection, follow-up detection, and specialized detection to take charge of the work of providing early warning. (2) Persist in putting detection and warning first; defend and control early. This involves implementing comprehensive defense and control measures towards people of interest and people who pose a special danger by: sharing information amongst base-level organizations, analyzing situations, and implementing methods of diversion and control. (3) Persist in putting education first; resolve conflicts early. [Zhuji City has] implemented a system called “4+1” that helps and educates certain key people within special communities. This system involves the standing committee + the department heads + village communities + the responsible police officers, and is a method of creating change through helping and teaching. The control, helping, and teaching mechanisms are directed towards populations of interest and implemented by: the united effort of the DSD, the local police, the police station branch leaders and the neighborhood communities, police, village and town (street administrative district, work unit) village (community) cadres, and secret forces. This effort uses the “Three Sinceres and the Three Helps” method which is to sincerely teach, sincerely touch and persuade, and to sincerely uplift, so as to gradually reduce elements of social instability and prevent conflicts from rising up to higher levels [of government]. (4) persist in putting punishment first; strike and take care of things early. [We should] use appropriate methods and at appropriate times strike and punish both acts clearly outside the bounds of the law as well as seeds of discord so as to deter and also to educate.
将国保工作指向对象的防范和控制措施落实到基层党政组织，实现在国保部门的专门指导下，基层组织具体落实对重点人，重点事的有效防控。“枫桥经验”的发源 地诸暨市，在这方面的工作内容相当丰富，比较突出的是“四先四早”工作机制：一是坚持排查在先，早发现苗头。通过基层组织和国保部门的基础排查，定向排 查，跟踪排查，专门排查等形式，切实抓好预警工作；二是坚持预警在先，早防范控制。通过与基层组织共同参与的信息交流，情况分析，采取分流管控的形式对重 点人员，高危人员落实综合防范措施；三是坚持教育在先，早化解矛盾。对特殊群体骨干采取了“4+1”帮教体系，即“常委+部门负责人+村居+责任民警”的 帮教转化机制，对各类重点人口落实了由国保民警，派出所分管领导及社区民警，乡镇（街道，单位），村（社区）干部和秘密力量组成的“四位一体”的管控和帮 教措施，以真心帮教，真情感化，真诚帮扶的“三真三帮”工作方法，逐步减少社会不稳定因素，尽力避免矛盾向更高层次转化；四是坚持处置在先，早打击处理。 对于法律界限明确的违法行为和苗头动向，采取适当的形式，适时运用打击处置手段，以起到警示和教育作用。
C. Rely on powers within society; establish coordination mechanisms
In the process of developing key strategic positions and key regions to defend against and control, we face the reality that our specialized abilities are not sufficient. Therefore, we have actively relied on powers within society by building a foundation of mutual help, mutual assistance, and mutual trust to establish a multi-tiered coordination mechanism. Classic examples of this are the cultural propaganda department’s program called “[Provide for] security by defending against [subversive] writings” and the “Three Corps, Three Personnel” program implemented at colleges and universities. The realm of cultural propaganda is characterized by great intellectual activity, a diversity of viewpoints, and by the reality that cultural propaganda is a major battlefield upon which the forces of opposition, domestic and foreign, seek to steal away the public’s right to expression. Along with the news, propaganda, broadcast and television, and culture departments, we jointly established a corps of monitors to inspect and control the book market, fiber optic cables, website forums, and ink and paper storehouses, so as to eliminate any possible hidden security threats, political or material. As for colleges and universities, [the problems encountered were that] campuses are scattered in different areas, security skills are low, defense capabilities are weak, etc. In response to theses conditions we joined with the alarm and protection force to form a corps of roving monitors, established a corps of student campus-wide roving monitors, and established an inter-school assistance corps. These “three corps” effectively supplemented the DSD’s power, ensured the [ideological] purity of the campuses, and at the same time—by establishing a system of school contact people, advisors, and intelligence personnel—promoted mutual understanding and communication between the schools and the DSD. This created prime conditions in which developments at the college level could be ascertained, and intelligence information could be gathered.
我们在开展重点阵地，重点领域防范控制过程中，针对专门力量不足的现实，积极依靠社会力量，在“互帮，互助，互信”的基础上，建立了多层次的协同机制，比 较典型的有文化宣传领域的“安防协作机制”和高校领域的“三队三员”机制。针对文化宣传领域思想活跃，观点多样，又是境内外敌对势力争夺舆论发言权的主战 场的实际，我们和新闻，宣传，广电，文化等部门联合建立了“安全防范协作机制”，通过建立联合巡查队的形式，把图书市场，有线光缆，网站论坛，油墨纸张库 房等作为重点防控部位，全方位地实施检查和监控，消除这些重点部位可能发生的政治上和物质上的安全隐患。针对高校校区分散，技防设施薄弱，保卫力量不强等 情况，我们通过警保（卫）联合巡逻队，学生校园巡逻队，校际救助队的“三队”形式，有效整合安保力量，保障了校园环境的洁净，同时通过院校联络员，辅导 员，信息员体系的建立，促进学校与国保部门之间的理解与沟通，也为及时掌握高校动态，搜集高校情报信息创造了有利的条件。
D. Rely on the people; refine self-governing mechanisms
[We strive to] persist in wide-scale mobilization of the masses, propagandizing to the masses, organizing the masses, guiding and using the enthusiasm for self-governance held by the masses, as a way of organizing and carrying on the work of preserving stability. Currently, more than 1200 administrative villages and more than 70 neighborhood residents’ committees in our city have established “creating security, preserving stability” small leadership groups. These small groups along with police mediation personnel, DSD intelligence personnel and the core “uplifting” personnel (referred to as “the three personnel”) extend the Public Security Bureau’s work of preserving social stability and the Public Security Bureau’s intelligence gathering apparatus out to the masses. The Fengqiao police station in Zhuji with the support of the township Party committee and according to need has established a self-governing people’s corps organized by forty DSD work coordinators. This corps was organized by the principle of “organize by proximity, one person from every village.” The corps not only effectively resolved the police station’s weaknesses of lacking sufficient foundational DSD police capability, incomplete ground-level supervision, holes in the control and supervision of people and events of interest, etc; it also further increased the breadth of the DSD’s intelligence gathering base and promoted the organic fusion of the work of specialized personnel with the work of the masses. Currently, we are planning on gradually taking this model out to the countryside where the DSD’s workload is relatively heavy.
组织开展群众性稳定工作。目前，我市1200多个行政村和70多个居民委员会建立了“创安维稳”领导小组和由“治安调解员，国保信息员，骨干帮扶员”为主 体的“三员”队伍，把公安机关维护社会稳定和搜集情报信息的触角直接延伸到了群众当中去。诸暨枫桥派出所还在镇党委的支持下，根据形势需要建立了由40名 国保工作协管员组成的群众自治队伍，按照“就近安排，每村一名”的设置原则进行覆盖，不但切实解决了当前派出所国保基础工作警力不足，基础管理不够到位， 重点对象管控存在疏漏等的实际问题，也进一步拓宽了国保基础信息的广度，更深层次的促进了专门工作和群众工作的有机融合。目前，我们正计划将这种工作模式 在国保工作任务比较重的乡镇逐步推开。
E. Rely on specialized forces; strengthen specialized mechanisms
A unified effort requires that the mechanism for building, deploying, commanding and utilizing secret forces is continually strengthened. As for building [secret forces], [we should] break free from the original framework of primarily relying upon grey regions; [we should] combine the use of economic incentives with personal feeling to establish a new kind of secret force that is highly educated, capable, and objectively demonstrates that they are willing to serve the DSD. At the same time, in order to generally raise the police force’s ability to engage in hidden conflicts, and their ability to engage in specialized work, we have introduced a work requirement that “no matter what position you hold, everyone must build the secret forces.” In terms of development, we have continually extended our intelligence gathering apparatus into the Internet and other new media to build upon our foundation of focusing on people, events and areas of interest. Starting in 2003, we tried building a secret Internet force. In terms of command and utilization, [we have] transformed the original passive model into a proactive model; we have gradually changed the practice of passively reacting to proactively striking. This fulfills the requirement of key departments to “detect and ambush” and has proactively cultivated a new kind of multi-faceted secret force that can be utilized across lines.
结合形势需要，不断强化秘密力量的物建，分布，指挥和使用机制。在物建上，打破原来以灰色为主的源体框架，运用经济手段和感情培养相结合的方式，建立了一 批文化层次高，活动能力强并在主观上愿意为国保工作服务的新型的秘密力量。同时为在整体上提高民警开展隐蔽斗争和专门工作的能力，我们还提出了“不论具体 岗位，人人都要物建秘密力量”的工作要求。在分布上，以原先围绕重点人，重点事，重点部位为基础，将触角不断延伸到网络等新增领域。从2003年开始，我 们就尝试物建网络秘密力量。在指挥使用上，将原来的被动型转为主动型，即将被动应对逐步转化为主动出击，提出了关键部位“预伏”的要求，并积极培养可以跨 线使用的多功能型秘密力量。
［To be continued.］
Image source: aboluowang, Shanghai plainclothes DSD police officers are on duty. (Photo taken by a petitioner in front of Shanghai government petitioning office.)