Zhao Dongmin, a labor lawyer and Maoist, was sentenced on 25 October 2010 to three years in prison for applying to set up a workers’ organisation to monitor the privatization of state enterprises and alert the authorities about cases of corruption. The Zhao Dongming case is significant for a number of reasons: First, what sets Zhao Dongmin apart from other imprisoned labour activists is that he works within the official Party structures and is a committed Maoist. Second, Zhao’s ability to mobilize a large number of workers across enterprises and even cities is impressive. Third, the ambition of Zhao’s project reveals the difference between workers in the state sector in the interior of China and migrant workers in Guangdong province. For example, the several strikes spearheaded by workers at the Honda transmission plant in Nanhai City, Guangdong province have not (or not yet) united workers as a collective force. Maoism as an ideology still has potential to fuel a sustainable workers’ organization, whereas migrant workers in Guangdong have yet to find their ideological direction.
Zhao Dongmin’s Lawyer Li Jinsong’s Open Letter to the Shaanxi Provincial Government:
Statement of Academics at Home and Abroad: Zhao Dongmin Is Not Guilty But Rather Has Performed a Great Service!
The documents above were first published by China Labor News Translations on 10 January 2011; it is reproduced here for non-profit educational purposes.