我沒有敵人 (

我沒有敵人 ("I Have No Enemies" / wǒ méiyǒu dírén) is a speech written by jailed dissident and Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo. Liu was arrested in December 2008 just before the release of Charter 08, a document he co-authored calling for various political and legal reforms in China. He was formally charged in June 2009 on charges of “suspicion of inciting subversion of state power” and was tried on December 23, 2009. He was convicted and began serving an 11-year sentence four years ago, today.

Why it is blocked: "I Have No Enemies: My Final Statement" was a prepared speech Liu read to the court during his trial. However, after 14 minutes, the judge cut him off, saying Liu had used up his allotted time. The full speech was published and widely circulated online in Chinese in January 2010 and gained even more prominence when it was read aloud in English by actress Liv Ullmann during the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony (video: part 1 | part 2).

Though Liu decries the supposed crimes for which he has committed and maintains his innocence, it is not an angry rant. Liu primarily takes on a martyr’s role: sticking to his ideals, accepting his fate as a victim, thanking his prosecutors and judges for their decency during the trial, and noting with optimism that change is on the horizon. Liu then addresses his wife, Liu Xia:

Throughout all these years that I have lived without freedom, our love was full of bitterness imposed by outside circumstances, but as I savor its aftertaste, it remains boundless. I am serving my sentence in a tangible prison, while you wait in the intangible prison of the heart. Your love is the sunlight that leaps over high walls and penetrates the iron bars of my prison window, stroking every inch of my skin, warming every cell of my body, allowing me to always keep peace, openness, and brightness in my heart, and filling every minute of my time in prison with meaning. My love for you, on the other hand, is so full of remorse and regret that it at times makes me stagger under its weight. I am an insensate stone in the wilderness, whipped by fierce wind and torrential rain, so cold that no one dares touch me. But my love is solid and sharp, capable of piercing through any obstacle. Even if I were crushed into powder, I would still use my ashes to embrace you.

The speech is part-love letter, part-reflection on Liu’s past, part-manifesto. I’ll cite a few notable passages, but it should be read in full (HRIC translation | David Kelly translation):

When I think about it, my most dramatic experiences after June Fourth have been, surprisingly, associated with courts: My two opportunities to address the public have both been provided by trial sessions at the Beijing Municipal Intermediate People’s Court, once in January 1991, and again today. Although the crimes I have been charged with on the two occasions are different in name, their real substance is basically the same - both are speech crimes. […]

But I still want to say to this regime, which is depriving me of my freedom, that I stand by the convictions I expressed in my “June Second Hunger Strike Declaration” twenty years ago ‑ I have no enemies and no hatred. None of the police who monitored, arrested, and interrogated me, none of the prosecutors who indicted me, and none of the judges who judged me are my enemies. Although there is no way I can accept your monitoring, arrests, indictments, and verdicts, I respect your professions and your integrity, including those of the two prosecutors, Zhang Rongge and Pan Xueqing, who are now bringing charges against me on behalf of the prosecution. During interrogation on December 3, I could sense your respect and your good faith.

Hatred can rot away at a person’s intelligence and conscience. Enemy mentality will poison the spirit of a nation, incite cruel mortal struggles, destroy a society’s tolerance and humanity, and hinder a nation’s progress toward freedom and democracy. That is why I hope to be able to transcend my personal experiences as i look upon our nation’s development and social change, to counter the regime’s hostility with utmost goodwill, and to dispel hatred with love. […]

I hope that I will be the last victim of China’s endless literary inquisitions and that from now on no one will be incriminated because of speech. Freedom of expression is the foundation of human rights, the source of humanity, and the mother of truth. To strangle freedom of speech is to trample on human rights, stifle humanity, and suppress truth. In order to exercise the right to freedom of speech conferred by the Constitution, one should fulfill the social responsibility of a Chinese citizen. There is nothing criminal in anything I have done. [But] if charges are brought against me because of this, I have no complaints. Thank you, everyone.



Notes

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  8. lv4nth said: That’s okay! He has no enemies.
  9. blank-postcards reblogged this from blockedonweibo and added:
    The speech in its original Chinese form reads very beautifully and heartrendingly. Linked below:...
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