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In a previous answer I said this:

I would also say that hyping the Uighur situation into "genocide" is part of a media manipulation. What is occuring in Xinjiang is a forced assimilation of those who occupy a peripheral region of China, and this is frankly about as objectionable to most of the Muslim world as Nelson Mandela being made South African president was objectionable to the African world.

The larger part of the world has more experience of fighting for assimilation and equal civil rights, than against it.

That is, many people are capable of seeing national assimilation as a desirable process.

This is a perfectly reasonable position on what China is doing in Xinjiang: forcible assimilation.

Nevertheless, the text was stricken from my answer and a ban imposed.

Stack Exchange staff have responded:

The denial of genocide and misrepresenting it as "media manipulation" is not allowed on the platform and therefore a violation of the Code of Conduct.

So you cannot deny false claims of genocide now, or claim the media are liars here? What is going on?

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  • There is a concept called cultural genocide which doesn't need people to be killed but involves forcing them to give it up to accept some other culture.
    – Joe W
    Dec 6, 2023 at 23:49
  • 3
    @JoeW, and how is that different from "forced assimilation" so as to make it "misinformation"?
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 4:01
  • The way I read the text in question is you are denying an event happened.
    – Joe W
    Dec 7, 2023 at 4:25
  • 1
    @JoeW, I say: "What is occuring in Xinjiang is a forced assimilation of those who occupy a peripheral region of China". I don't see any denial of an event.
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 5:59
  • "I would also say that hyping the Uighur situation into "genocide" is part of a media manipulation" That seems like a denial to me and others based on the things that you have said have happened as a result of what you posted.
    – Joe W
    Dec 7, 2023 at 15:41
  • 1
    @JoeW, I'm certainly denying "biological" genocide because there isn't serious evidence that the Uighurs are being killed off, but your "cultural genocide" sounds like a synonym for the more straightforward term of "forced assimilation", which is exactly what I said is occurring.
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 18:22
  • Again, there is something called cultural genocide as well and trying to change it to a different term that doesn't sound as bad isn't a good thing.
    – Joe W
    Dec 7, 2023 at 18:55
  • 2
    @JoeW, the criteria in question isn't whether it's a "good thing in your view,, but whether the term "forced assimilation" is a misinforming term - a falsehood comprising a form of misconduct.
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 19:11
  • As I have stated multiple times genocide isn't just killing people and there are multiple forms that are all classified as genocide. Cultural genocide is also classified as genocide even though it doesn't involve killing people.
    – Joe W
    Dec 7, 2023 at 19:18
  • 1
    @JoeW, so you say. In my view, whether a broadly non-lethal absorption of population comprises "genocide" by any ordinary understanding of the word (not the understanding of liberal lawyers and media propagandists), is a politically contested claim. The alternative term "forced assimilation" was a denial of that political slant, not a denial of any facts of the matter. Even Wiki has an entry for that term that clearly applies to the facts in Xinjiang, and says the term "forced assimilation" is used "by those who study genocide": en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forced_assimilation
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 20:16
  • Now you are throwing insults at people who don't agree with you? Wiki has a nice link on cultural genocide and goes into how it is different the forces assimilation. As should be clear from that actions that got taken I am not the only one who feels like that. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_genocide
    – Joe W
    Dec 7, 2023 at 20:24
  • @Steve "by any ordinary understanding of the word (not the understanding of liberal lawyers and media propagandists)" the Genocide Convention I linked in my answer is signed by China as well. If you don't dispute the facts of causing serious bodily harm (e.g. forced sterilizations), imposing measures to prevent births (e.g. forced sterilizations and forced abortions) then you can already reach the conclusion of genocide per that convention.
    – JJJ Mod
    Dec 7, 2023 at 21:09
  • 1
    @JJJ, I quote from your source: "Early drafts also included acts of cultural destruction in the concept of genocide, but these were opposed by former European colonial powers and some settler countries.". In other words, "cultural genocide" is not genocide, and is a term "not enshrined in international law". The fact that the assimilation is forced, does not mean the intention of any sterilisations or even killings have a genocidal intent. (1/2)
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 22:24
  • 1
    @JoeW They apparently already did, and the response is quoted in the question. If the community team don't agree with their stance either, then I really don't think there's anything more that can be said.
    – F1Krazy
    Dec 8, 2023 at 13:26
  • 1
    As stack exchange isn't a forum for discussion venting doesn't belong on it.
    – Joe W
    Dec 8, 2023 at 15:44

2 Answers 2

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The issue with that paragraph as well as other statements you've made on the subject in previous posts and comments is that they are sugarcoating the situation in Xinjiang. By sugarcoating I mean that you're presenting the situation in a much more palatable way than it actually is.

As a baseline for the actual situation, let's look at Wikipedia's article on Uyghur genocide. That starts off with:

The Chinese government has committed a series of ongoing human rights abuses against Uyghurs and other ethnic and religious minorities in Xinjiang that is often characterized as genocide. Beginning in 2014, the Chinese government, under the administration of Chinese Communist Party (CCP) General Secretary Xi Jinping, incarcerated more than an estimated one million Turkic Muslims without any legal process in internment camps. Operations from 2016 to 2021 were led by Xinjiang CCP Secretary Chen Quanguo. It is the largest-scale detention of ethnic and religious minorities since World War II. The Chinese government began to wind down the camps in 2019. Amnesty International states that detainees have been increasingly transferred to the formal penal system.

In addition to the arbitrary detention of Uyghurs in state-sponsored camps, government policies have included forced labor, suppression of Uyghur religious practices, political indoctrination, forced sterilization, forced contraception, and forced abortion. Experts estimate that, since 2017, some sixteen thousand mosques have been razed or damaged, and hundreds of thousands of children have been forcibly separated from their parents and sent to boarding schools.

Even in the small excerpt removed from your answer, you use a number of ways to sugarcoat the situation:

  • You deny that there's a genocide in the first sentence and you blame this on media manipulation. See for example this article in the Guardian entitled China breaching every article in genocide convention, says legal report on Uighurs. TL;DR: the Genocide Convention to which China is a member lists 5 criteria which each individually constitute genocidal acts. An independent thinktank found evidence of all 5 perpetrated by agents of the state. From a code of conduct perspective, this is denying claims about historical or newsworthy events.

  • The second sentence deals with the actual sugarcoating. You use the term 'forced assimilation'. Let's look at the Wikipedia page for forced assimilation. That page talks about being forced to adapt a cultural identity through measures that are less invasive than those in the Genocide Convention (killing members of the group, causing serious bodily harm or mental harm to those in the group, preventing births in the group and forcibly transferring children from the group to another group). From a code of conduct perspective, it's misrepresenting claims about historical or newsworthy events.

  • Then the first paragraph ends with some sort of comparison to make it all seem like business as usual: it's just like Mandela becoming president. That sentence as well as the last two sentences of the excerpt are editorializations on your part. All of it seems to have the same function: to downplay / misrepresent the Uyghur genocide.

That's it for the excerpt. There were some more comments in response to other user who had challenged you on the excerpt text. I'm not going through the comments because it'd get rather repetitive.

Nevertheless, the text was stricken from my answer and a ban imposed.

We had sent a warning on a prior occasion when the same issue came up for another answer. At that time we informed you about the misleading information policy in the code of conduct and why the answer and comments at the time crossed the line.

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  • 1
    I think what's actually happening is that you're enforcing a less "palatable coating" than the reality. You talk of sterilisations for example, without mentioning that all Chinese have had births suppressed by control policies. The comparison with Mandela was not with his becoming president, but with the desire of black South Africans to be assimilated and treated as equals there. Only a small minority supported the so-called Bantustans.
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 18:30
  • 3
    @Steve After the exchange of messages we had after the first mod message I don't think we'll end up agreeing even after extensive discussion. If you continue to disagree with the mod action taken then it's probably best to use the contact form to get a final judgement from the community management team.
    – JJJ Mod
    Dec 7, 2023 at 19:29
  • 1
    I have, and they've simply justified your actions using your same holed logic, demonstrating an instance of the same manipulation I referred to in my original remark. I quoted part of their response in my question.
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 20:19
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From the Code of Conduct, Misleading information policy

To ensure the integrity of our network, we do not allow any content that promotes false or misleading information or coordinated misleading information campaigns.

Broadly speaking, we do not allow and may remove misleading information that:

  • . . .

  • Misrepresents, denies, or makes unsubstantiated claims about historical or newsworthy events or the people involved in them.

From your original post

I would also say that hyping the Uighur situation into "genocide" is part of a media manipulation. [Emboldening added.]

The emboldened part appears to be an "unsubstantiated claim[] about historical or newsworthy events or the people involved in them."

Q: So you cannot deny false claims of genocide now, or claim the media are liars here? What is going on?

Stack Exchange staff have responded:

The denial of genocide and misrepresenting it as "media manipulation" is not allowed on the platform and therefore a violation of the Code of Conduct.

Disputing, but not denying, genocide claims may be done if substantiated. For example,

"These basic facts show that there has never been so-called genocide, forced labour, or religious oppression in Xinjiang," [Foreign Minister] Wang said. "Such inflammatory accusations are fabricated out of ignorance and prejudice, they are simply malicious and politically driven hype and couldn't be further from the truth."

But, "misrepresenting it as 'media manipulation'" is not.

Note, above, that Foreign Minister Yang called it "politically driven hype". There may be, from Yang's statement, an implication that the media is being manipulated.

You crossed the line when you made it your own statement ("I would also say") instead of citing another and made the implication an accusation.

I agree that the text from the original post should have been deleted.

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  • So it's "misinformation" to state any facts without a reference?
    – Steve
    Dec 7, 2023 at 4:00
  • 2
    @Steve - Not at all. Referencing an identifiable public figure as the source prevents a "fact" from being construed as your misinformation.
    – Rick Smith
    Dec 8, 2023 at 14:20

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