在民主的母國學習民主

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1990 / 3月

文‧王葭 圖‧民陣英國分部提供


民主顯然是件累人的事。

 

眾所周知,民主中國陣線巴黎總部正式成立於「午夜時分」——一九八九年九月廿三日廿三點四十五分;許是承襲這個「過程完全民主」、「意見充分溝通」的傳統,民陣英國分部的成立大會,在同年十二月十六日召開,也足足經過了廿多小時的討論,終於在「黎明之前」——凌晨三點,通過組織條例,並選出主要幹部。

 

民陣將如何在英國展開腳步?英國分部又在民陣組織中扮演什麼樣的角色?本刊編輯在倫敦訪問了甫上任的民陣英國分部主席邵宗懿。


經過一個不尋常的炎夏,今年冬天的英倫風雨不斷、鎮日陰霾。

「六.四屠殺」後一連串的遊行、退黨、街頭劇、燭光會……都過去了;此間華人、留學生也工作的工作、上學的上學,繼續在異鄉為生活、學業奔忙。

幾個月前義憤填膺、日夜守在「使館」前抗議示威的本地年輕人,現在可能正在為救護車罷工搖旗吶喊;而曾經在天安門廣場上衝鋒陷陣的媒體工作者,則轉戰四方,從東德、捷克、羅馬尼亞、蘇聯,到巴拿馬、南非、香港……,客廳堥滬茪p小的方盒子,簡直就裝不下這個天翻地覆的世界。目不暇給之餘,六月間在天安門廣場上獻出生命,掀起這場民主狂潮的中國年輕學生,彷彿給逐漸淡忘了。

不是民運低潮

「很多人認為現在是民運的低潮期,我不以為然」,中國民主陣線英國分部主席邵宗懿表示:「因為我們已經由引人矚目的街頭運動走過來了。國家的問題不可能在街頭解決,也不可能靠外國人解決;目前的問題也不在打倒李鵬,而是如何在中國建立民主。這是長遠的事,應該放慢腳步,用寶貴的時間來學習民主;所以我說表面的趨於平緩不是低潮,而是民運真正開始穩步發展,逐漸成熟。」

邵宗懿,四十七歲,上海人,一九八四年來英,其後得到伯明罕大學博士,目前任職英國地鐵公司;無論從年齡、資歷上,他都可算是此地大陸留學生中的前輩。

他個頭不高,熱忱十足;學生時代下放新疆十多年的經驗,到底在臉上留下了刻痕,也使他有時顯得急切。英國分部成立大會上,當理事會推舉邵宗懿為主席,按程序須先由大會批准後生效,而這位大家口中的「老邵」一時激動,登台即謂:「我自知能力有限,但願竭盡全力為民主這列車推一把!」

後來經人提醒,才由大會通過,邵宗懿再度上台發表其正式「就職演說」,也留下了「三分鐘非法主席」的紀錄。

在接受本刊採訪時,邵主席十分「民主」地希望其他理事也能發表意見,但基於保護理由,以下紀錄概以問答囊括。

沒有來自廣場的職業民運者

問:民運英國分部成立一個多月以來,比起法國、美國的民運團體,似乎顯得比較沉寂,較少在媒體曝光,為什麼?

答:我想主要因為此地沒有來自廣場上的職業民運者,不容易造成媒體焦點。其次,這恐怕也與政府的運作有關,比方說同樣是簽證延期的事,在美國經過國會聽證、議院投票、總統簽署等一連串的過程,因此不斷在媒體出現;而在此地,我們寫信給Home Office(內政部),三星期後,移民官員回信表示一律延長一年半。這種關起門來說話的態度,很難引起媒體注意。而且英國媒體的多樣性也不能和美國比,紐約時報不登,洛杉機時報可能登,但英國報紙就這幾份,出現頻率也就更有限了。

此外,我們花了整個夏天作內部調整,討論究竟要不要搞?怎麼搞?現在正式成立了組織,可是仍然還在學習、摸索的階段。

人力、經費、經驗是主要問題

問:一般認為,比起美、法等國,民運在英國的推展,在客觀條件上來說,阻力要更大些。您的實際經驗呢?

答:事實上是十分困難。英國政府已經被香港問題弄得焦頭爛額,必須與中共維持合理的關係,因此態度顯得十分保守。不過就目前來說,我們不能也不必去影響英國的外交政策,因為我們也不希望他們弄僵了關係,影響留學生來英學習。

真正的問題其實在人力、經費和經驗。留英學生比起美、法本來就少;在這三、四千的學生中,又有百分之八十以上是政府公派,有官費壓力;而他們大多是理工生,沒有異議傳統,加上遲早得回去的陰影,很多人即使有心,也不願或不敢涉足民運。而願意獻身的,除了一腔熱忱,也苦無經濟來源。再說英國沒有民運傳統,不像美國的「中國民聯」,已經有八年的經驗可供借鏡、學習。所以民陣在英國的確起步得挺辛苦。

「六.四」像是一場惡夢

問:六.四以後,此地民運人士曾經在全英九個城市開學生座談和意見調查。能不能概括地談談此地學生對六.四和民運看法?

答:六.四前後可說是留學生表達心跡的高潮,遊行示威、公開退黨、募捐籌款、控訴李鵬政府等等。此後「人民日報」宣稱以六月九日鄧小平講話為界線,在此之前的遊行示威,由於學生「不了解情況,並受西方傳播媒體的矇騙」,可以不予追究,但此後再有「反政府」言行,則要嚴懲。基於現實考慮和精神壓力,學生的熱情於是逐漸消退氣氛轉為低迷。到了七月中以後,大多數的人幾乎都恢復了從前的讀書生活。

但話說回來,無論六.四前後,大家對李鵬政府的態度可說是沒有改變;問題是恨李鵬、恨共產黨、恨鄧小平,並不代表他們就支持民運。

學生的態度大致可粗分三種,其中三分之一十分悲觀,他們在此地親見東歐情勢演變,明白共產黨多數是完蛋了,但是中國這個大爛攤子又有誰能搞得好呢?與其發生內亂、內戰,還不如維持現況。另外的三分之一雖然認同民運的觀念和作法,但將來的事誰也不知道,最保險的辦法還是持保留態度;一方面也自忖能力有限,沒必要冒這個險。最後三分之一,則以不同的形式支持民運,有人挺身而出,奔走運動,也有人為顧及家人,而以化名暗地幫忙。

對這三種態度,我們都完全能體會、理解。身在海外,眼看國內的情況如此,持任何一種態度都是很痛苦的。

僑界聯繫有待加強

問:留學生之外,來自僑界的支持呢?

答:僑界的支持原是民運主要可依靠的力量,因為一來,他們可以成為民陣與政界溝通的橋樑,二來也是財政的主要支援者,至少在美國是如此運作的。但這一部分我們聯繫得還不夠。

不過,英國僑界的組成,與美國的情況不盡相同,此地留學生多數是「十年改革」之後出來的,少數能定居下來的,基礎有限,加上生活重擔,多半寧可不問政治,不像美國留學生已經到了第二代、第三代,建立了足夠的社會基礎,可以成為民運的支柱。

而老一輩的華僑,多來自香港新界一帶的中下階層,從本小利微的生意做起來,現在雖然經營餐館事業有成,但仍然辛苦,沒有時間過問生活以外的事。再說英國到底不是一個對移民太友善的國家,這些老僑們就算定居在此數十年,仍然自成天地,還有落葉歸根的回鄉打算,因此也不願意沾上任何麻煩。

我們不是製造麻煩的人

還有些人,則仍然沉醉在能蒙「大使」召見的榮耀中。這也是可以理解的,留滯異鄉,誰都有特別濃重的民族歸屬感,誰願意承認自己國家的當政者用坦克、機槍對付年輕學生?曼城(曼徹斯特)的一位梁先生就是個例子,他就算親眼在電視上看到成堆的屍體,還是寧可堅持「不知道真相究竟如何」、「目前不作判斷」。這種心境,毋寧是值得同情的。

問:在這樣的背景下,民陣打算如何爭取僑界和留學生的支持?

答:對僑界的聯繫,我們實在是作得不夠。而六.四之後,一些比較激動的年輕人曾經要求中國城罷市,多少造成感情傷害。現在經過時間的冷卻,民陣秘書處將一方面展開聯繫與溝通的工作,一方面鼓勵民陣成員去餐廳工作,這不只是為了打工賺錢,而是要讓他們明白,我們不是一群製造麻煩的「動亂分子」,而是一群誠誠懇懇的讀書人。

出版刊物、提供民主訊息

至於留學生的問題是,他們在此地受經濟的限制,資訊極其閉塞,除非用課餘時間到圖書館或學校翻雜誌、看電視,否則「人民日報」就是唯一的消息來源。因此,加強出版是我們的首要工作。我們目前已有曼城的Simon Jones先生和幾位大陸、港台留學生合作的「吶喊」雜誌,但一方面成本太高,出了兩期後已經很難支持下去;另一方面「吶喊」的理論性和人文取向,對大部分學理工的大陸留學生來說,不容易接受。所以我們正在籌畫一份新聞雙週刊,每次出四到五頁,及時提供世界新聞和大陸消息。這樣的做法成本低些,也容易普及。

問:有沒有來自當地人士的支持呢?

答:我們已經開始接觸英國工業界,尤其是工會組織和與大陸有生意往來的廠商。他們大多數在大陸作生意有過不愉快的經驗,因此這些人一方面比較同情民運,同時也急需諮詢,可以說與民陣有建立互惠關係的條件。另外,媒體遠東部門工作者,也是我們積極接觸的對象。

我們也曾經歌功頌德

問:六.四以後,此間媒體對中共消息的處理角度,有極大的轉變。可不可以談談你們的看法?

答:整體來說,媒體對中國事務的看法,在六.四以後成熟了很多。比方鄧小平退休、解除戒嚴令,這在西方媒體原來可能是大新聞,可是記者們現在很清楚地說明這些只是表層現象,沒有實質意義。不過,我們並不願意苛責六.四以前的西方媒體對中共的過份樂觀,因為包括我們自己在內,也曾經眩目於十年改革的沿海繁榮景象,也為鄧小平歌功頌德過,直到六.四以後才真正清醒。中國人猶且如此,何況西方觀察家?

支持民主,就是支持民陣

問:到目前為止,民陣英國分部的成員有多少?分佈情形如何?吸納成員的基本態度如何?

答:目前正式登記入會的成員,有七十三人,其中絕大部分是大陸留學生,大約百分之廿是港台學生和僑界、當地人士。不過這個數字並不能代表真正的支持者總數。

由於我們相信民運不能在海外搞,有一天一定要回去傳播民主思想,成為主流。因此我們並不鼓勵每個人都不計一切的獻身,因為事實上我們急於培養一股回去植根的力量。所以,民陣不大張旗鼓擴大組織,吸納會員,而是「抓住骨幹核心」,一切以實效考慮,只要支持民主就是支持民陣,是否正式成為會員並不是最重要的事。

我可以舉個例子,有一回在一個場合中,有人問起:大陸學留生大概有多少支持民運?被問的人回答:「百分之七十吧!」沒想到當場的一個「使館」幹部忽然脫口而出:「不止,少說有九成呢!」我們相信,即使在「使館」中,固然有不少頑固的政治幹部,但私底下,許多官員是同情我們的。這些人早晚也會成為我們的外圍組織。

沒有「聯合」的必要

問:六.四以來在英國成立的民運團體有不少,民陣英國分部正式成立之後,有沒有「聯合」或「統一」的問題?

答:六.四前後成立的民運團體,至少有七、八個,比方由留學生組成的「中國學生拯濟會(CSRA)」、香港學生和本地人士為主的「中國團結行動(CSC)」,和以本地人士為主的「中國救助(CA)」等等,算起來民陣是最晚成立的組織。由於大家的目的一致,這些團體之間的關係很好,有些成員也重覆。我們認為至少目前並沒有聯合的必要,一方面是這些團體實際上都不大,有些在六.四前後十分活躍,但近幾年來只剩下創辦人在維持;另一方面,民陣的基本態度,不在擴大組織,而更鼓勵各人利用他自己的角色和位置來發生作用,不一定用民陣的旗子,我們寧可作背後無名的支持者,以發揮實效,這叫做手段為目的服務。不過,整個來說,我們相信民陣仍然扮演了主導的作用,套句共產黨的話說——「我們最有戰鬥力!」

沒有「揮霍」的可能性

問:民陣不擴大組織、招納成員,那麼經費如何解決?

答:坦白說,我們幾乎是在「沒有經費」的情況下維持運作的。民陣成員大部分是大陸留學生,誰都心餘力絀,所以「吶喊」雜誌出版後,不但沒有「盈收」,倒是送了不少給留學生,到目前為止,民陣最主要的一筆收入還是台灣梅花訪問團來倫敦演出時當場的募捐,一共有二千五百多英鎊左右。另外,本地華僑也有一定數量的支持。

這些經費由民陣五人組成財務小組,有支票聯署權,每一筆支出都精打細算。至於每次理事們來倫敦開會,大家什麼都不報銷,因此根本沒有開支。所以在這裡,不會有「亂花錢」的隱憂,因為我們根本就沒有錢。當然,長遠來看,財源的支持是很重要的關鍵,有人提議經營企業、貿易來資助民陣運作,不過這對我們來說,還是一個遙遠的夢想。

問:能不能請您概要的分析民陣英國分部的角色,和近程的計畫?

答:民陣英國分部很明顯地是從屬於巴黎總部,一切綱領、條例、方針基本上是總部的決定。就組織成員來說,英國分部雖在人力、經費、經驗上,顯得不足,但是我們剛起步;但也正因為如此,我們沒有包袱,成員多是單純的學生,也幾乎可以說都是十年改革的受惠者,因此顯得較溫和,包容性較大,沒有不同背景帶來的利益衝突。

靜下心來學習民主

我們相信時間在我們這邊、人心在我們這邊;目前種種的壓力和限制,會隨著時間和我們的努力而消減,畢竟老人政治最不利的,即是時間。

反過來說,利用這些僵持的時間,正好靜下心來,好好學習,練習民主進程,為將來作準備。目前我們在每四周一次的理事會上,都請學者上課,來自台灣的威爾斯大學博士候選人戴錫崑來講過「民主程序」,英國知名律師菲利浦.貝克講「英國政治體系」和政經學院劉炳森教授講過「遊說經驗」……。我們認為放慢腳步、虛心學習,是目前比遊行、示威更重要的事。因為現在問題不是「打倒李鵬」,李鵬遲早會倒;而是如何在中國加速封建滅亡、建立民主。因此搞上我們的民主經驗、知識,才是當務之急。

另外,我們將在四月廿至廿三日,在西柏林舉辦「社會主義國家民主化進程」研討會,汲取東歐國家的經驗。

「反革命」處處受歡迎

問:聽說您當選主席之後,花了許多時間在英國各大城進行溝通工作,結果如何?

答:是的,我去了牛津、曼城、伯明罕等地與學者、留學生交換意見。沒想到我這個「反革命」竟然受到這樣熱烈的歡迎和支持,說實話這出乎我的意料之外,但是給我很大的鼓舞。其實我當選這個主席,只是因為我年齡大一點,中國人的傳統嘛,大家支持我出來做點事……。

問:您對民陣的成員非常保護,也儘量讓他們少曝光以免帶來不必要的傷害,但是您自己的兒女都在大陸,有沒有考慮過他們的問題呢?

答:坦白說,誰都害怕。誰沒有親人在大陸?但總得要有人走出來,我說過我年紀大些,如果我也害怕、避嫌不做的話,包括我兒女在內的更多下一代年輕人,還要受坦克車壓碾的威脅,還會有更多危險,不是嗎?

無論怎麼說,時間在我們這邊、人心在我們這邊;我相信,我們會把民主帶回去,我相信人民會選擇我們的。

也要與時間賽跑

兩小時的訪問,是在倫敦北部一所建在地鐵站上的公寓二樓進行的。一面談話,一面還可以感覺到灰線地鐵的奔忙。而對大陸留學生而言,這個陳設簡單的寓所,是一個可以隨時「便飯」、打點、通宵徹談的「家」。熱心的邵宗懿夫婦像大家長一樣悉心照料一群羈旅異鄉、憂心國是的大孩子。

在民主的母國學習從來沒有經驗過的「民主」;在東歐共產骨牌傾列倒下,連蘇俄老大哥也放棄一黨專政的今天,這一群憂心忡忡的海外知識分子,顯然不只在與專制抗衡,也得奮力與時間賽跑。

〔圖片說明〕

P.77

民陣英國分部於去年底在倫敦成立,有百餘位成員參加。

P.78

民運人士希望為民主而戰的血不白流,能盡快見到大陸的民主改革。

P.79

在倫敦舉行的天安門百日祭現場,留學生燒香祭拜殉難的民運人士。

P.80

民陣英國分部的資訊來源及財力不豐,所出版「吶喊」雜誌已難支持下去。

P.81

邵宗懿(右)及王思遠(左)分別獲選為民陣英國分部主席及秘書長。

相關文章

近期文章

EN

Democratic Lessons in the Motherland of Democracy

Wang Jia /photos courtesy of the British branch of the Front for a Democratic China /tr. by Christopher Hughes

Democracy is an exhausting affair--the British branch of the Front for a Democratic China (FDC) did not finish its founding conference until 3:00am last December 16 after a marathon twenty-hour discussion. To find out what the first steps of the British branch of the FDC will be and what its role will be in the FDC, our correspondent in London talked to its chairman, J.Z. Shao, and other members. Whose names we have not included out of concern for their own safety.


Q: People generally think that the FDC in Britain will face greater difficulties than its branches in the United States and France. Is this borne out by your experience?

A: Yes, due to the Hong Kong problem the British government has to maintain a reasonable relationship with Peking and therefore seems more conservative. Yet there is not really a need for us to influence foreign policy and we do not want to create a bad relationship that will affect the prospects for new students coming to Britain.

Actually, the problem is our lack of manpower, financial resources and experience. There are fewer students here than in France and the United States. Moreover, 80% of them are sent by the government and can be pressurized through their grants. Most of them study science and there is no dissident tradition to build on. Sooner or later they must go back under a shadow, and although they agree with us, they do not dare to openly associate with us. On the other hand, the people who are willing to make a contribution usually have good intentions but are without money and experience.

Q: Apart from Chinese students there is the overseas Chinese community in Britain. What kind of support can you get from them?

A: Support from the overseas Chinese community could be our main reliable reasource; they could be a bridge between the FDC and British society and politicians; they could be our main financial supporters--at least it works like that in the United States. But we still have not worked hard enough in this area. The composition of the overseas Chinese community is unlike that of the United States because most of the students have only come here after "the ten-year period of reform" and very few have been able to stay on; if they do stay, the pressure to make a living leads them to prefer not to get involved in politics. This is unlike the United States, where the third generation have already established strong contacts and become the mainstay of the FDC there.

Most of the overseas Chinese here are from Hong Kong and work very hard in the restaurant trade. Because Britain is not very friendly towards immigration, although these people have been here for a long time, they still want to return home one day and do not want to cause any kind of disturbance in the meantime.

The other thing is that overseas one's sense of nationality becomes stronger and nobody is really willing to believe that their own country could use tanks and machine guns to kill its students. There is a Mr. Liang in Manchester who, although he saw so many dead bodies on television and so on, still insists that we do not know the truth and cannot make any judgments. Still, this is an attitude with which we can sympathize.

Q: Against this background, how do you plan to get support from these groups?

A: Again, we have not really started. After June 4 some young people asked Chinatown to go on strike and such actions created a bad image. Now that the passage of time has calmed things down, the FDC is working to communicate more and encourage our members to work in restaurants. This is not only to get money but is also to show that we are not trouble makers but sincere students.

The overseas students are themselves financially limited and are preoccupied with their work. Their only source of information is the People's Daily, so Simon Jones in Manchester, together with some overseas students from mainland China and Taiwan, has published Nahan magazine. However, their expenses are too high and after publishing two issues it is hard for them to continue.

On the other hand, such a theoretical journal does not appeal to students of science, so now we are planning to publish a smaller two-weekly newsletter which will be cheaper and more widely distributed.

Q: How about support from British people?

A: We have already started to contact industrial circles, especially the labour unions and enterprises doing business with the Chinese mainland. Most of them have had a tough time and tend to be sympathetic to the FDC, while at the same time needing to understand the mainland. So there is a mutually beneficial relationship. We also intend to make more contacts with journalists who cover the Far East.

Q: How many members does the British branch have at present and what is your attitude towards recruitment?

A: Now we have about seventy-three formal members and most of them are students from the mainland. About 20% of them are from Hong Kong, Taiwan, the overseas Chinese community and British people. But this figure cannot really represent the numbers of our supporters as, in light of the "embassy's" restrictions, we do not encourage people to join formally because we want them to return to mainland China and become the mainstream movement there. If you support democracy, then you support the FDC and it is not really important whether or not you are a formal member.

Q: Without a large membership, how will you get funds?

A: I can frankly say that we can work almost without a budget. Until now, the main contribution has been £2,500 from the performance given by a group from Taiwan. Of course, the overseas Chinese community has given us some support.

All our outgoings are very tightly controlled. For example, when the committee comes to London to have a meeting they do not apply for expenses. In the British branch there is no problem over wasting money because we do not have any money. Of course, in the long run financial resources are very important. It has been suggested that we should set up some kind of business but this is still a dream for us.

Q: Can you briefly tell us about the role of the British branch in the FDC and what your short term plans are?

A: The Head Office in Paris decides policy. We lack manpower, finance and experience, but this is in fact our strong point because all our members are simply students and we do not carry any dead wood. Most of us have benefited from the ten years of reform which makes us seem more modest and tolerant. We believe that time is on our side, people are on our side and the present limitations and pressures will gradually disappear through our efforts. After all, the greatest disadvantage of old-people's politics is time.

We can use this period to calm down and learn how to practice democracy in preparation for the future. In our meetings, every four weeks, we invite a scholar to give us lectures on subjects such as democratic procedures, experience of the lobby system and the British political system. We believe that slow and careful learning is more important than holding demonstrations, because the problem is not the overthrow of Li Peng, which will happen sooner or later, but how to finish the feudal system and build up democracy. On April 20-23 we are going to have a conference on "The Process of Democratization in the Socialist Countries" in West Berlin so that we can learn from the experience of East Europe.

Q: I heard that after you became chairman you spent a lot of time communicating with the overseas Chinese communities in major British cities. How was that?

A: Yes, I have been to Oxford, Manchester, Birmingham and other cities to exchange opinions with scholars and students. I was surprised that they gave this "counter-revolutionary" such a warm welcome. It was very encouraging and they selected me as chairman because I am a bit older. This is Chinese tradition, you know, and they gave me this chance to be active. . . .

Q: To the members of the FDC you are very protective and try not to expose them to any risk, but your own children are still in mainland China. Don't you worry about bringing them trouble?

A: Frankly, who is not afraid and who does not have relatives on the mainland? Somebody must stand up. I am a bit older and if I am frightened then the younger generation will have to take even more risks. Anyway, time is on our side, we will bring democracy back. I believe we will be chosen by the people.

For these overseas intellectuals who have never had any experience of democracy to study it in its motherland, while East Europe has seen the dominocollapse of communism and even the Soviet Union has given up its one-party system, their struggle is obviously not only against dictatorship, but it is also a race against time.

[Picture Caption]

The British branch of the Front for a Democratic China was set up in London last year and has a membership of over 100.

Pro-democracy activists hope that the blood of their mainland colleagues has not been spilled in vain, and hope soon to see democratic reforms in mainland China.

Chinese students in London burn incense in memory of fallen pro-democracy activists at a memorial service marking 100 days since the Tienanmen Square massacre.

Short on information and financial resources, the British branch of the Front for a Democratic China finds it hard to support publication of its magazine "Nahan."

Shao Tsung-i (right) and Wang Ssu-yuan (left) were elected chairman and secretary-general, respectively, of the British branch of the Front for a Democratic China.

 

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