Chen Guangcheng on way to US

posted at 10:46 am on May 19, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

The saga of Chinese democracy and pro-life activist Chen Guangcheng will conclude today with a much happier ending than first feared. The New York Times reports than Chen has boarded a flight to the US and is already in transit — along with his family:

Chen Guangcheng, the blind legal defender who made a dramatic escape from house arrest and whose decision to seek refuge in the American Embassy here jolted American-Sino relations, left China aboard a commercial flight bound for Newark on Saturday.

Mr. Chen and his family departed around 5:30 p.m. on a United Airlines flight after facing earlier delays. The Chens, accompanied by American officials, were brought onto the plane shortly before takeoff and seated in the business-class cabin. Flight attendants drew a curtain around their seats and barred other passengers in the cabin from using the toilet while the plane was on the runway.

In a statement, American officials obliquely praised the Chinese government for its cooperation in resolving what had become a diplomatic headache for both sides. “We also express our appreciation for the manner in which we were able to resolve this matter and to support Mr. Chen’s desire to study in the U.S. and pursue his goals,” Victoria Nuland, a State Department spokeswoman said.

Speaking by cellphone before he boarded the flight, Mr. Chen told friends he was excited to leave China but that he was also worried about the fate of relatives left behind. “He’s happy to finally have a rest after seven years of suffering, but he’s also worried they will suffer some retribution,” said Bob Fu, president of ChinaAid, a Christian advocacy group in Texas that championed Mr. Chen’s case.

Sometimes lost in this story is that Chen ran afoul of Beijing’s Communist government on more than just democracy, as Life News reminds us:

After a second Congressional hearing, during which he called to update members of Congress on the current status of his tenuous situation in China, forced abortion opponent Chen Guangcheng has finally been granted his visa request to leave China for the United States.

Chen had languished in a Chinese hospital since American officials reportedly agreed to a deal with Chinese leaders to allow Chen to come to the United States to study and escape the nation that imprisoned him and forced him to endure house arrest for years because he exposed and helped the victims of a massive forced abortion and sterilization campaign in his hometown of Linyi.

Some people are born in America.  Some others are born to be American.  Chen Guangcheng is, in that real sense, coming home.  It’s good news for him and for us, but hopefully at some time everyone else in China will have the same freedoms that Chen and his family will shortly enjoy.


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He’s leaving on a Jet Plane…..

Now, did Hillary “help” him out?

upinak on May 19, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Happy for he and his Family. Sad for the rest of his Country. I wonder how long it will take before Obama takes credit..I saved Chen…

sandee on May 19, 2012 at 10:49 AM

While “conservatives” where whining and nagging and crying, Obama was busy figuring out a way to save him and his family without starting a war with China.

Another accomplishment for him with no help from GOP.

lester on May 19, 2012 at 10:52 AM

Wonder how long he has to be free here. :(

MelonCollie on May 19, 2012 at 10:53 AM

While “conservatives” where whining and nagging and crying, Obama was busy figuring out a way to save him and his family without starting a war with China.

Another accomplishment for him with no help from GOP.

lester on May 19, 2012 at 10:52 AM

Story of the entire administration. Think where the economy would be if we had two parties interested in governing instead of just the Democrats.

cjw79 on May 19, 2012 at 10:54 AM

While “conservatives” where whining and nagging and crying, Obama was busy figuring out a way to save him and his family without starting a war with China.

lester on May 19, 2012 at 10:52 AM

Yeah, because this was probably going to lead to war otherwise.

Dextrous on May 19, 2012 at 10:56 AM

Yeah, because this was probably going to lead to war otherwise.

Dextrous on May 19, 2012 at 10:56 AM

A shooting war, probably not. But an economic war, maybe, and we would definitely be the losers.

MelonCollie on May 19, 2012 at 10:58 AM

A shooting war, probably not. But an economic war, maybe, and we would definitely be the losers.

MelonCollie on May 19, 2012 at 10:58 AM

Uh, no. China’s come a long way but their economy is heavily export driven. A trade war with their biggest market would be tantamount to national suicide, especially in economic conditions like this.

This “CHINA INVINCIBLE” meme has got to end.

Doomberg on May 19, 2012 at 11:00 AM

A great welcome for Mr. Chen, Ed. Thanks. This is an excellent outcome, and I think it demonstrates where China is on the trajectory from Maoism to a better future.

There was a time when China would not have made this concession. The difference now, in my view, is the expectations of the Chinese people. Their spirit is a great genie which can’t be stuffed back into a bottle.

China’s tentative liberalizations over the last 20 years have had much the effect of Gorbachev’s in the 1980s. They have acquainted the people with other ideas and ways of life. The people have acquired a mental model for better expectations of their government — and a basis for standing on their own feet rather than being swept along in a tide of communist terror. The power of the internet has contributed much to this as well.

I wouldn’t count the Chinese out. We may well see their sclerotic communist government fall in this decade. And when we do, Chen Guangcheng can return from his home in the land of liberty to the land of his birth — while crowds cheer him in the streets of Beijing.

J.E. Dyer on May 19, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Some people are born in America. Some others are born to be American. Chen Guangcheng is, in that real sense, coming home. It’s good news for him and for us, but hopefully at some time everyone else in China will have the same freedoms that Chen and his family will shortly enjoy.

Yes! Will he actually be able to stay?

dogsoldier on May 19, 2012 at 11:04 AM

lester, you are a funny little troll. ; )

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 11:04 AM

I have to admit that I’m surprised The Won and company stuck their neck out considering this gentleman’s cause. I have to assume this was the best outcome for all parties to save face.

Cindy Munford on May 19, 2012 at 11:10 AM

lester on May 19, 2012 at 10:52 AM

lester…fester the jester!

KOOLAID2 on May 19, 2012 at 11:17 AM

I wouldn’t count the Chinese out. We may well see their sclerotic communist government fall in this decade. And when we do, Chen Guangcheng can return from his home in the land of liberty to the land of his birth — while crowds cheer him in the streets of Beijing.

J.E. Dyer on May 19, 2012 at 11:04 AM

If it were to happen while there was still a BHO Admin here I fear he would knock himself out propping up the Communist regime and put a stop to that kind of foolishness.

Grammie on May 19, 2012 at 11:18 AM

Thank the Lord he’s finally made it out. Also a victory for the media, specifically the blogs. The Obama administration was set to abandon him, but could not do so with the pressure that was put upon this situation.

Gingotts on May 19, 2012 at 11:24 AM

Story of the entire administration. Think where the economy would be if we had two parties interested in governing instead of just the Democrats.

cjw79 on May 19, 2012 at 10:54 AM

Yeah, gosh, aren’t those Dems just wonderful? But gee, didn’t they have the House, Senate and the Executive Office the first two years? Just think what it would be like if those damned citizens didn’t have the vote. We could have an economy exactly like Greece’s by now.

Shay on May 19, 2012 at 11:26 AM

I guess I won’t be eating crow on this one.

DarkCurrent on May 19, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Although this is great news, I wonder what happened to the supporter who smuggled him to the U.S. Embassy?
Way back when we opened up trade with China, the conservative theory was that capitalism would topple communism eventually. It has, just not totalitarianism–yet. It was also thought the Chinese people, once empowered with economic freedom would demand political freedom. That seems to be what is happening now, Tiananmen Square appeared to be the end of that push for freedom but was only the beginning. The ruling elite couldn’t quite bring themselves to introduce free markets, that would’ve meant surrendering some control, instead they’ve clung to their central planning ways becoming corrupt in the process. despite their growing military power, China is far more vulnerable than they seem. Chen Guangcheng may indeed see the day he can return to a free mainland China.

cartooner on May 19, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Story of the entire administration. Think where the economy would be if we had two parties interested in governing instead of just the Democrats.

cjw79 on May 19, 2012 at 10:54 AM

Hoo boy, where do you begin?

I guess you just don’t.

Cleombrotus on May 19, 2012 at 11:28 AM

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 11:04 AM

KOOLAID2 on May 19, 2012 at 11:17 AM

Obama getting work done really messes with you two, right?

lester on May 19, 2012 at 11:29 AM

I get it that he did not want to live in China. But why did he need to come here? Do we really need another indigent foreigner? How will he support himself? How does his coming here benefit America? The guy has no means of support. He should have stayed in China. China is his country. We Americans are idiots and he played us for suckers.

Rogervzv on May 19, 2012 at 11:30 AM

If Chen gets lucky and makes a billion dollars, here, Chuckie Schumer won’t let him leave the US with “the government’s” money. Chen will have to go hide in the Chinese embassy with the $50 maximum that the dems want to allow people to take out of America.

Progress.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on May 19, 2012 at 11:32 AM

All part of the plan.

He is now exiled from China forever and can not influence anyone there. China could not just do it as he did not want to leave. They can not just execute him as he is to well known. They let him escape to then be exiled under the ruse that he is leaving to go to school.

tjexcite on May 19, 2012 at 11:32 AM

DarkCurrent on May 19, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Is this what you thought would happen. Sorry I haven’t read your past comments on this and I’m interested in your insider view.

Cindy Munford on May 19, 2012 at 11:34 AM

Rogervzv on May 19, 2012 at 11:30 AM

I believe he has a position waiting for him at New York University.

shaloma on May 19, 2012 at 11:34 AM

Is this what you thought would happen. Sorry I haven’t read your past comments on this and I’m interested in your insider view.

Cindy Munford on May 19, 2012 at 11:34 AM

Pretty much.

DarkCurrent on May 19, 2012 at 11:37 AM

I believe he has a position waiting for him at New York University.

shaloma on May 19, 2012 at 11:34 AM

Yeah, but to do what? He doesn’t speak English and isn’t trained in anything. NYU wants him as a pet, since he’s not university material in any way, shape, or form. And the question of his funding is serious.

Chen should have gone to Taiwan which is where the Chinese who wanted to escape the commies are.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on May 19, 2012 at 11:39 AM

lester, quite the contrary. I am a big supporter of work. Not much for teet sucking if you know what I mean. I suspect you do. ; )

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 11:39 AM

Story of the entire administration. Think where the economy would be if we had two parties interested in governing instead of just the Democrats.

cjw79 on May 19, 2012 at 10:54 AM

LOL, where exactly is your planet?

whbates on May 19, 2012 at 11:40 AM

LOL, where exactly is your planet?

whbates

I’m guessing Earth, you?

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 11:47 AM

DarkCurrent on May 19, 2012 at 11:37 AM

Is this the product of a determined wish to change and join the world (not sure about that goal) or the new media getting the truth out? Or both.

Cindy Munford on May 19, 2012 at 11:48 AM

DarkCurrent on May 19, 2012 at 11:37 AM

The link is a nice touch…

ladyingray on May 19, 2012 at 11:52 AM

Is this the product of a determined wish to change and join the world (not sure about that goal) or the new media getting the truth out? Or both.

Cindy Munford on May 19, 2012 at 11:48 AM

I’d say some of both.

DarkCurrent on May 19, 2012 at 11:52 AM

Obama getting work done really messes with you two, right?

lester on May 19, 2012 at 11:29 AM

Count me in there, too, lester. When the economy was tanking, he wemt to work on ObamaCare. When gasoline was near $4 a gallon, he was “getting something done” about birth control. He got us four more trillion bucks in the hole while advocating “Pay-as-you-go”. Yes, I hate it when he “gets things done”.

cartooner on May 19, 2012 at 11:55 AM

Not without some smart moves on his part, this administration was more than willing to let the Chinese machine torture and kill him and perhaps his family.

Guess that old and busted Bill of Rights has some usefulness after all.

Speakup on May 19, 2012 at 12:01 PM

I’m guessing Earth, you?

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 11:47 AM

Well you both apparently are living in a different reality than me maybe the same planet but a different dimension perhaps.

whbates on May 19, 2012 at 12:04 PM

whbates, really? Care to elaborate?

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 12:18 PM

Grateful that he made it out, but I too am worried for family and friends left behind.

4Grace on May 19, 2012 at 12:21 PM

lester on May 19, 2012 at 11:29 AM

…SO?…what is your drug of choice?…Heroin…meth…crack?…you’re on it!

KOOLAID2 on May 19, 2012 at 12:25 PM

Obama getting work done …
lester on May 19, 2012 at 11:29 AM

…what work does he do there fester the jester????
Enlighten us!

KOOLAID2 on May 19, 2012 at 12:29 PM

KOOLAID2 on May 19, 2012 at 12:29 PM

Why, he’s keeping us safe from external threats by building…a better golf game.

4Grace on May 19, 2012 at 12:33 PM

whbates, you okay?

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 12:36 PM

Happy for he and his Family. Sad for the rest of his Country. I wonder how long it will take before Obama takes credit..I saved Chen…

So, two weeks ago it was a day of shame when Chen didn’t leave China. But Obama doesn’t deserve credit now that he is coming to the States?

Concentrate on the economy. Being petty is not a winning issue.

YYZ on May 19, 2012 at 12:48 PM

YYZ on May 19, 2012 at 12:48 PM

…true.

KOOLAID2 on May 19, 2012 at 12:59 PM

Valerie Jarrett stuck her finger to the wind.

John the Libertarian on May 19, 2012 at 1:16 PM

John the Libertarian, you sure it was the wind?

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 1:20 PM

whbates, yeah I didn’t figure you to have much to offer up. Bye.

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 1:21 PM

I’ll wait and see what happens when this gentleman and his family get here. I don’t trust our politicians.

Cindy Munford on May 19, 2012 at 1:29 PM

Obama getting work done really messes with you two, right?

lester on May 19, 2012 at 11:29 AM

Given that the administration and the embassy thoroughly botched this at that get-go by essentially kicking him out of the embassy after he fled there seeking asylum, I would say that the best the administration can claim right now is that it managed to clean up the mess it created.

Given that you are a middling to low level troll, I don’t expect you to either understand nor comprehend the implications of what I just posted.

AZfederalist on May 19, 2012 at 1:43 PM

Who is going to protect him from Sebellius?

StubbleSpark on May 19, 2012 at 2:04 PM

While “conservatives” where whining and nagging and crying, Obama was busy figuring out a way to save him and his family without starting a war with China.

Another accomplishment for him with no help from GOP.

lester on May 19, 2012 at 10:52 AM

Story of the entire administration. Think where the economy would be if we had two parties interested in governing instead of just the Democrats.

cjw79 on May 19, 2012 at 10:54 AM

The Republican case against Scott Walker’s reelection
I’m sorry to break the news to you but fact is the Conservatives are actually getting bills passed in the House. While at the same time the Senate is doing nothing. Obama is breaking the constitution on a daily basis and acting like a King.

We conservatives see this much differently. Why did China allow Chen to live to ever see this day is the real question. Well I will tell you why. Same reason the Democrats lost seats and the Conservatives gained ground in 2010 and since. God is not dead. You can not fight GOD and win. He is the reason Chen escaped from that house and now to America. GOD works in his own ways evil will never understand.

I have news for both Establishment Republicans and Democrats. 2012 will be much much worse for you than in your worst dreams.

Because the fact is GOD is on the side of the Conservatives. GOD will fight this 2012 battle and he will win.

Already there is a large movement to make sure of this but one you elites can not possibly see.

I predict Mitt will not win neither will Obama.

Steveangell on May 19, 2012 at 2:37 PM

I predict Mitt will not win neither will Obama.

Steveangell on May 19, 2012 at 2:37 PM

I wish I could be with you on that, but the sad truth is it’s unlikely. The ‘conservative’ side is reduced to running a white, non-racebaiting version of Obama, and the liberals would sooner castrate themselves than run anybody else than the big 0.

Third party? “Derp derp, crayzee ray-cist Joo-h8r” leads the pack, and the others aren’t even on the national radar.

MelonCollie on May 19, 2012 at 2:52 PM

Chen Guangcheng is, in that real sense, coming home. It’s good news for him and for us, but hopefully at some time everyone else in China will have the same freedoms that Chen and his family will shortly enjoy.

Not if Obama wins a second term…we’ll just be more like China.

AUINSC on May 19, 2012 at 3:55 PM

Hope you enjoy American tyranny. We don’t reqtrict you to one child, but be ready to sacrifice wealth and opportunity to support the American loser class.

tom daschle concerned on May 19, 2012 at 4:04 PM

Third party? “Derp derp, crayzee ray-cist Joo-h8r” leads the pack, and the others aren’t even on the national radar.

MelonCollie on May 19, 2012 at 2:52 PM

GOD works in his own ways. But GOD made America the greatest Country on Earth. It is unique among all Countries on Earth. God will not allow evil to prevail as long as there are righteous for him to bless. Not in his promised land America. Ezekial 37 makes it clear America is that country while our founding makes it even more clear. People came here from throughout the earth for Religious Freedom. Both Mitt and Obama would deny us that thus GOD will step in and save us. Now Mitt could possibly repent but I just do not see that happening thus Mitt will somehow not see the election is my opinion how GOD will work his wonder or he will lose and a third party will win. But I am not GOD only GOD knows how he will perform this miracle but I believe he will as long as enough of us pray for it.

Steveangell on May 19, 2012 at 4:04 PM

Future story:

“Police Escort Chen Guangcheng Through Airport After Arrival Blocked By Abortion Support Protest Led By Sandra Fluke”

eeyore on May 19, 2012 at 4:07 PM

…left China aboard a commercial flight bound for Newark on Saturday.

Out of all the places in this country they could have sent him, they’re sending him to Newark? He’s likely to get off the plane, look around and start screaming to go back to China.

arik1969 on May 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Obama getting work done really messes with you two, right?

lester on May 19, 2012 at 11:29 AM

Count me in there, too, lester. When the economy was tanking, he wemt to work on ObamaCare. When gasoline was near $4 a gallon, he was “getting something done” about birth control. He got us four more trillion bucks in the hole while advocating “Pay-as-you-go”. Yes, I hate it when he “gets things done”.

cartooner on May 19, 2012 at 11:55 AM

Don’t forget when the dems had control of Congress/Senate/WH and wasted the entire two years on Obamacare.

Sure he gets “things” done. Too bad none of it is useful or helps anyone.

“Honey, the house is on fire. Aren’t you going to do something?”

“But I did – the windows are clean!”

kim roy on May 19, 2012 at 5:51 PM

So thankful he is going to be safe at last.

cheetah2 on May 19, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Chen Guangcheng on way to US

Welcome to America.

Yes, indeed.

rukiddingme on May 19, 2012 at 11:38 PM

whbates, yeah I didn’t figure you to have much to offer up. Bye.

Bmore on May 19, 2012 at 1:21 PM

First, some folks don’t live on these sites and actually have a life. Second, what exactly didn’t you understand about what he said, I said, or you said? I didn’t think it was all that complicated and didn’t actually warrant much of an explanation or response. Apparently you did.

whbates on May 20, 2012 at 12:23 AM

A shooting war, probably not. But an economic war, maybe, and we would definitely be the losers.

MelonCollie on May 19, 2012 at 10:58 AM

Not a chance.

What was at stake here was “face”, which is very important in Chinese culture. However far more face would have been lost by drawing attention to this with some kind of ‘war’. As it is, most people in China have probably never heard of him, and likely never will. Of those that do come to know of him, the majority will disagree with him and almost all of them will care far more about whether they have jobs. “Its the economy” is just as true in China as anywhere else.

China already has plenty of critics outside its borders. Adding one more isn’t likely to change anything of importance.

And as somebody else noted, China cannot win an economic war with its major customers. They have enough trouble as it is, what with their customers busy driving their own economies to the wall with policies that China has already tried, failed with, and rejected.

YiZhangZhe on May 20, 2012 at 10:28 AM