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Buried alive

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活埋 (huó mái): buried alive

When the Chinese government allowed dissident and author Yu Jie to leave the country they were hoping to silence his voice. Little did they know, just weeks after he entered the United States, one of Yu Jie’s statements would be dubbed the “first internet catchphrase of 2012.”

Yu Jie wrote that the night before Liu Xiaobo was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, he was wrestled into a car and taken to an unknown location where he was stripped naked, kicked and had his fingers bent back one-by-one. After that, the Domestic Security Department agent in charge made the following threat:

“If the order comes from above, within half an hour we can dig a pit and bury you alive. No one on earth would know. . . As far as we can tell, there are no more than 200 intellectuals in the country who oppose the Communist Party and are influential. If the central authorities think that their rule is facing a crisis, they can capture them all in one night and bury them alive.”

"如果有上级的命令,我们半个小时之内可以挖个坑把你活埋了,全天下没人知道。" "根据我们掌握的情况,国内反对共产党的、有影响力的知识分子,总共也不会超过两百个人,一旦中央觉得统治出现危机,一夜之间就可以将这两百人全部抓捕,一起活埋。"

Other dissidents including Jiang Tianyong (江天勇), Teng Biao (滕彪), Liu Shihui (刘士辉), Zhang Lin (张林) and Liu Dejun (刘德军) have also reported being threatened by the Domestic Security Deparment that they could be buried alive.

The phrase “buried alive” quickly began to make the rounds on the internet. One microblog user wrote: “They say in the event of a crisis they’ll bury 200 influential intellectuals. What a tragedy. Even when it comes to being buried alive, I don’t qualify.” A Ding, an online writer included the phrase in his Chinese New Year Greeting: “Happy New Year — hope you make it onto the bury-alive list!”

Yu Jie is perhaps best well known for authoring the book, China's Best Actor: Wen Jiabao.

Yu jie.jpg