Archive for April, 2013

[2013-04-30] The poisoning of Zhu Ling: A 19-year-old cold case is under national spotlight again in China-

Posted by woodinwind on April 30, 2013


The poisoning of Zhu Ling: A 19-year-old cold case is under national spotlight again in China

Alia | April 30th, 2013 – 12:36 am

The recent poisoning case at Shanghai’s Fudan University revived people’s memory of the thallium poisoning case of Zhu Ling 19 years ago. The roommate of the victim of the Fudan case already confessed to poisoning and said it was an April Fool’s joke. However, 19 years has passed and no one has yet been held accountable for Zhu Ling’s tragedy. While we’ve already covered how China’s education system and unique only-child culture have contributed to the Fudan case, Zhu’s case, in the eyes of many netizens, raises a bigger question about China.

Zhu Ling before being poisoned

In 1994, Zhu Ling was a sophomore in physical chemistry at Tsinghua University, one of China’s most prestigious higher education institutes. She was remembered to be a girl that was pretty, attractive, intelligent, and as a member of the university’s folk music club, talented in music. She was first poisoned by thallium at the end of 1994. But after a short period in the hospital, Zhu made it back to school. The following March, however, she was poisoned again with the same deadly chemical, presumably, in much larger quantity. That time, she wasn’t as lucky. 

Her doctors at the time ruled out the possibility of thallium poisoning because both Zhu herself and her university confirmed that she had neither access to nor contact with any thallium. Her middle school classmate Bei Zhicheng, who was then a student at Peking University, posted an SOS letter on a Usenet newsgroup. Pouring responses from around the world proposed that Zhu was suffering from thallium poisoning. The case was later recognized as China’s first telemedicine case.

Though Zhu was ultimately saved, she is now almost completely blind and permanently paralyzed with severe neurological damage to her brain. 

The suspect

Zhu’s roommate Sun Wei was the only suspect interrogated by Beijing police at the time. Detailed investigation results were refused to be released by authorities, even to Zhu’s parents. But information shared online, both then and now, showed that Sun was the only acquaintance of Zhu’s who had access to thallium from university lab. Zhu’s mugs, bottles and lunch boxes “mysteriously” disappeared after her roommates were informed that there would be an investigation. A series of hacked email communications between Sun and Zhu’s other roommates showed that Sun has guided them in how to defend her innocence. All  information points to Sun and the other 2 two girls, Jin Ya and Wang Qi, who were also under the same roof with Zhu when she was poisoned.

19 years ago, Sun was retrieved by her parents after only 8 hours of interrogation. And the case was closed afterwards. However, Tsinghua University refused to grant Sun her bachelor’s degree upon graduation, and she failed to obtain a passport or visa to go to the US for years until she changed both her name and her birthday to get a new ID.

More than just a cold case

Zhu Ling now

Sun, who is now rumored to live in the US, comes from a well-connected and powerful family. That’s party why the case received so much attention nationally both 19 years ago and now. Netizens suspected that Sun’s family played a key role in blocking investigation and prosecution of the case. Sun’s uncle Sun Fuling was deputy mayor of Beijing from 1983 to 1993 and Vice Chairperson of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, China’s major political advisory body. Sun’s grandfather Sun Yueqi, was a senior leader of the Revolutionary Committee of the China Kuomintang that now rules Taiwan, and also am important member of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference. Most  importantly, rumor has it that Sun Yueqi was a good friend of Jiang Zemin, then China’s president, and has asked his old friend a little “favor.” Even at the end of his Baidu Wiki page, there highlighted that his family has used their influence to block police probe into Zhu’s case.

We probably will never know that whether Sun’s family used their power and influence. The only thing that matters to the entire discussion now is that most Chinese netizens believed so – they don’t believe Sun deserves the benefit of doubt in this case. The resolution of the case, in the minds of many netizens, will be a test of China’s rule of law, or the lack of it.

Like 谁是谁非任评说, Zhu’s lawyer and popular columnist, ccommented: “The most difficult part of the case is that Sun set up a standard. Numerous corrupt officals and those who are guilty hope that they can be exempt from punishment, too, by the same standard. They form a very close coalition.” Another netizen 读雨耕晴 also sighed: “What has prevented Zhu’s case to be solved? It all comes down to the powerful influence of Sun’s family. In the face of those in power, what else can us ordinary people do than to be an onlooker?”

Making waves on Weibo

Zhu Ling is now the second most searched word on Sina Weibo’s social keywords’ list (China’s Twitter). And Sun Wei the fifth. Grass-root Weibo celebrity 一毛不拔大 with more than 1 million followers is Zhu’s friend Bei Zhicheng who set up the SOS Usenet to help diagnose Zhu. A few posts of him mentioned Sun directly as the poisoner. Other hugely popular opinion leaders like Yao Chen or Kai-Fu Lee, both with millions of followers, also shared Zhu’s case analysis. Calls for a re-investigation are everywhere. 

Zhu Ling and Sun Wei are most searched words on Weibo

Even People’s Daily, the mouthpiece of the Chinese government, voiced support for a re-investigation: “Zhu Ling is 40 years old now, completely paralyzed, almost blind and with the intelligence of a 6-year-old. What exactly happened 19 years ago? Who was behind the poisoning? The biggest wish of Zhu’s family is to solve the case and disclose investigation results.” The Weibo post, to everyone but also no one’s surprise, was already deleted, or, censored by “a mysterious force”, like one netizen commented.

On the Weibo page of Ping An Beijing (literally “Peace Beijing”), the official account of Beijing police with some 4.8 million followers, calls to re-investigate Zhu’s case were left after every single post. Like one netizen 任恒营 commented: “I’m here to call for a re-investigation of Zhu Ling’s case every day. It’s to protect the dignity and fairness of law.” So far, no response of any sort.

Netizens on the move

Seeing the lack of official response, Chinese netizens, both in and outside of China, were mobilized. On Tianya, a dynamic online community where Chinese netizens share, discuss and debate about all kinds of news and gossip, Sun’s old posts in which she defended herself were dug out and analyzed word by word. Those from Huaren and MIT BBS, two most popular online communities for oversea Chinese, have worked for weeks to track down where Sun and the other two roommates are today (Sun and the other girl are said to live in the US now).

Rumored picture of Sun Wei now

So far, Sun’s new name, new ID number, home address and employer information are all disclosed online. So are the same information for the other two roommates of Zhu. The point is to use the power of “the people” to make life miserable for the “thallium party”, a term coined by netizens to refer to Sun, the other two roommates and those involved in the case.

Many netizens hope that their voices can be heard by someone powerful enough to challenge the influence of Sun’s family. By someone, netizens are looking at China’s new President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang. After all, Sun’s family is rumored to have close relationships with Jian Zemin, a lingering shadow over China’s political scene even 10 years after he handed over power. Like netizen 李佳佳Audrey  commented: “Many of China’s new leadership have a law background . I’d love to believe that such a leadership can work to improve the country’s rule of law, social equality and the protection of human rights. What is a Chinese dream? This is a Chinese dream.” The hope of another netizen 无名羊 was much simpler: “It seems true that Sun’s family has gradually lost its influence. May justice, however gained, be return to Zhu Ling.”

Will authorities re-open the case? Will new progress be possible for a 19-year-old case even if it’s re-opened? No one knows at this point. But China’s active online population are pushing things forwards, just like what they’ve been doing for other injustices happening in every corner of the country.

Relationship map of the “thallium party” put together by netizens


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[2013-04-29] Education For Life – a tragedy, not a story

Posted by woodinwind on April 29, 2013

这是CNN 的非官方报道。ireport 相当于维基新闻,大概可以翻译成草根新闻报道。


Education For Life – a tragedy, not a story
By jessiecai  |  Posted 2013-4-29 11:47am

21 years ago, in September 1992, Zhu Ling, a vivacious Beijing girl, started her college life in Tsinghua university, arguably the best University in China. Two and half years later, on April 28 1995, the girl was confirmed a victim of Thallium poisoning, lying in ICU ward unconsciously after suffering excruciating pains. She was the subject of a murder case. The date happens to be the official anniversary of Tsinghua university, an important day for all alumni to thank the institution for their education.

18 years have gone by and Zhu Ling is still alive, only barely. She became paralyzed completely with permanent nerve and digestive system damages. She is now a 40 years old blind woman with IQ equivalent to a 7 years’ old, her good looks, memories and talents are all gone. For more of Zhu Ling’s current situation, check out this YouTube video made by volunteers (http://youtu.be/nJEdupyI97c). Her parents have been fighting against all odds, hanging on the only hope that one day, the murderer will be brought to justice.

And it has turned out to be a group of murderers most likely. The email hacking of the primary suspect in year 2006 has provided an essential twist, in which she-who-cannot-be-named led the conversation with a group of girls, most of them shared the dorm with Zhu Ling back then. The conversation was about how to divert the public attention without leaving any evidence for Zhu Ling’s friends and family, in case some day they will have to face court. The girls exchanged action plans and even jokes, as if they were working on a final year project.

The primary suspect had the motive, the reach to the deadly chemical, the chance to drop the doze – for twice as confirmed by technical analyses, she was suspiciously involved in the theft of Zhu Ling’s personal belongings, and was summoned for police questioning in year 1997. The case against this primary suspect had been however mystically closed due to undisclosed reasons, while it is public knowledge that she came from a prestigious and powerful family, with strong political connections reaching to the members of politburo.

Year 2013, it was time again for Tsinghua-ers to celebrate the institution’s glory and achievements, little wonder that there is no place for Zhu Ling. Netizens however, has launched a frenzy propaganda: “the human flesh search”, to locate the group of suspects who have unveiled themselves in the hacked emails. Surprisingly Zhu was hated by this group for making the following unforgivable mistakes: returning dorm too late, making too much noise, and consuming hot water from other’s thermal flasks. The group had arguably then came to the decision of adding a special ingredient into Zhu’s education, Thallium.

For myself and many others about the same age of Zhu Ling, the cruelty of her fate is many folded: that young (and supposedly intelligent) girls could take other’s life so lightly, that they have refused to repine, that people involved – and there are quite a number of them – have all been muted by the “system”, that the omnipotent “system” has been backing up the accused murderers as if they were a group of heroes.

“Thank you all for not killing me” has since become the social norm to greet our ex-classmates over social media across mainland China. Unlike Zhu Ling, we have survived the education system. Together with her, we are calling for the re-opening of investigation, the date of judgment, the final truth. Until that day comes, never ever forget Zhu Ling.

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[2013-4-27] 致清华和朱令案有关的铊们

Posted by woodinwind on April 27, 2013









集狐朋狗党谋划左右舆论;在改身份证件…… 其实你只要做过两件事就可以让我相信


















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司法审判不出面 民意审判不会停

Posted by woodinwind on April 23, 2013

司法审判不出面 民意审判不会停
王晓映 孟 旭




   全世界的刑事案件都不会100%侦破,公开资料显示,中国刑事案件侦破率在40%左右,世界排名不算低。为何朱令案能持续成为热点?综观此案,话题焦点 在于:案发顶级高校,作案手段阴毒,当年花样年华的被害人今昔对比悬殊令人扼腕,嫌疑人有高官背景并更名改姓出国,案件不了了之。

  由于 老案未结,真相扑朔迷离,一时间全民争做福尔摩斯。老资料在汇总,新证据也不断被发现。然而,此轮新翻出的证据显示,在被害人家属和公众眼中未结的案件, 官方已经在多年前宣布告结(不过这个结果并未通报被害人家属),大概也正是因为这个原因,尽管民意审判人声喧嚣,司法审判却始终缺位,万众期待的法官位置 空无一人。

  民意审判一直将矛头对准一个嫌疑人——朱令的室友孙某。但是,民意审判不能代替法律。对于这桩热点案件,现实的情形是,司法 审判若不出面,民意审判不会停止。民意审判没有法律效应,不能抓人,却有不可忽视的爆炸当量。在倡导和谐社会建设、提高社会管理能力的中国,无论是司法机 关还是党政人大政协各相关部门都不应保持长时间的沉默。司法审判缺席越久,民意审判的蓄发能量越大,这能量可能会毁掉很多东西。

  它可能 毁掉民众对司法公正的信任。当年朱令案已经受到司法立案追究,所以此案不受20年追诉时效限制,因此,警方不应放弃调查这起投毒案。哪怕程序上已结案,亦 可重启。不予理睬,不仅对受害者和“嫌疑人”不公平,也拉低了整个社会对司法的信任。它可能毁掉民众对社会公正的信念。朱令案在民意审判中,成为道德热点 的晾晒台,嫌疑人是因为高官背景而被保护吗?案件是因高官干预而不了了之吗?真相如此吗?只有司法出场,才能真正让清者自清。


Posted in 法律探讨 | 1 Comment »

[2013-04-23] 孙维,你的救赎何时到来? —-通过孙维等信件看作案动机及团体心理支撑

Posted by woodinwind on April 23, 2013



因为网络上不难找到孙维等的通信材料,我核对过手中的版本(见此贴下文《孙维等通信材料整理版》),认为是可信的(如当做法律上的证据,这要公安对黑客 “追铊”手中的源材料做数据分析,这是后话)。我也会在这个帖子后把我手上整理后的材料贴出来,下文引用过的例句我会标红,如果有读者发现是伪造或改动过 的,我收回我的结论。




这一点在20051221日孙维的信中可以看出,孙维草拟好《声明》后,给其他四位发邮件要求修改:并说:“如果你们有时间,请帮我从旁观者的角度来修改它。”(If you have time, pls help to review it from an outsider point of view)。这句话明确了假设的潜在逻辑:我们都是知情者。随后,《孙维声明》1230日在天涯刊出。


1)在这个团队中,孙维发挥了怎样的角色?我们可以从语言里发现一些端倪:在李含琳对孙维写的信中,不止一次称呼孙维是孙小猪(Sun Xiaozhu),在对其他同学的称呼里,则不时出现“小猪们”(piglets)这个词,这个称呼得到了其他成员的认可。如果把小猪这个词当做集体隐喻的话,孙维,作为命名者,以其强势性的角色占据了团队的核心位置,且在随后的组织工作中一直作为统领的身份出现。如在2006114日孙维写给其他人的信中,她说:“你们要冷静下来!抱歉我让你们都出名了” Keep calm, keep cool! I actually feel very sorry that it bring you all “famous”Bring 一词具有明确的引导感,也表明了孙维在整个事件中的主导作用。

因为往来都是私人信件,戒备之心也松懈些,不时可以看出孙维内心的潜意识活动。如在2006114日孙维的信中,孙维评价网络上出现假冒李含琳的帖子时,说到:“这个帖子已经在暗示如果我(孙维)是凶手的话,这些年我一定饱受折磨。因此,放过我吧”(Here it already started to imply that if I am the murderer, i must have already suffered these years, so let me go.)在英文表述中,她的谓语用了am,而不是虚拟语气were。我们知道虚拟语气的效果在于明确事件没有发生,这里的am,在后面又出现了一次,可以理解为孙维在行文中潜意识已经有了与凶手的身份认同感。

2)这个团队是如何维系在一起的?犯罪团体往往因利益相关,一荣俱荣,一损俱损,所以具有极强的凝聚力。这种凝聚力在孙维的信件中得到了核实,她们的关系确实不错。20051223日孙维的信件中,孙维说:“当然,你们都是我最最好的朋友,一辈子的朋友。”(Of cause you all are my BEST friends, lifetime friends)。犯罪团体在面对外界压力时,会有本能的凝聚力。在描述网络上的声讨之声时,金亚20051218日的信中说:“他们在匿名发言时,竟然如此卑劣、恶心,不负责任。” People can be really mean, disgusting and irresponsible when they can speak anonymously.)在孙维的信中,对于质疑她的人,她多处用“肮脏的”(dirty)一词修饰,以明确自身的反抗立场,并取得其他成员的认同。

另外,孙维作为领导者,会不时鼓励、肯定,培养团体的自我认同感,同时,她努力给其他人以安全感,并明确说:“我的家庭在控制着大局”(My family is monitoring.)让她们对外界的压力有积极心态及抵抗能力。比如2006129日,金亚在给其他人的信中写别人搜到了她的照片,并提及孙维的“满脸横肉”,在回信中,孙维也以调侃的语气回复这个说法,可以说,这个团队消化外界压力能力很强,并有良好的心理调节机制,其中孙维功不可没。

但是,孙维的内心并非一直如此冷静、强大,在压力剧增的时候,她也曾反省过,并对把她们四人拖下水感到过内疚。在给李含琳的信中,她说“我非常非常抱歉把你们卷进了这个肮脏的事件中,尤其是你们为了支持我,犯下了这些事。我不知道该说什么。。。。我真的非常非常抱歉!”(I’m very very sorry and sad to get you involved in this dirty thing, especially that you all did it just to support me 😦 I don’t know what to say… I’m really very very sorry!)。可以说,孙维的心理和正常人一样,有过悔恨、彷徨、难过和自责,她无法真正做到“笑骂由人”那般洒脱。

另一方面,正是因为她独自承担的这些压力,让其他四位有了愧疚感和感激之情,这在外界的压力促进下进一步加强了团体的凝聚力。李含琳在读完孙维第一稿《声 明》后,回信:“作为你的密友,当我读完你的声明后,我感到羞愧,我不知道你都经历了什么。如果我是你的话,我早就崩溃了。我真的为你感到骄傲”(As a close friend of yours (I assumed), I feel so ashamed when I read your clarification, I had no idea what you have been through. If I were in your shoes, I may be collapsed already. I am really proud of you,)李含琳一方面明了事件的性质,所以用了“魔鬼”一词,另外,孙维的牺牲也让她有合作的向心力。在这个时候,合作是唯一的选择,何况孙维还如此仗义。正义观和负罪感在这里被生存本能和感激之心战胜,这也是其他几个人能形成如此合力的主要原因。


按照信件中讨论的内容分析,朱令多次晚归,打扰寝室休息,加上性格不合,引起孙维等人的嫉妒之心。这让孙维有了报复的念头。在首次投毒未果后,孙维开始了 第二次投毒,事后,李含琳曾向孙维询问朱令中毒时铊的量有多大,“朱令血液中的含量有多少?我在尝试弄清她的中毒是急性的还是致命的”(What was the dose in Zhu Ling’s blood again? I am trying to figure out again if it is acute toxic limit or lethal.)孙维在2006119日的回信中说:“关于你的问题,按照媒体的说法,是致命的,我指朱令血液中的含量”(Back to your question, according to media, it’s lethal, I mean dose in ZL’s blood. )按照这个措辞判断,孙维一开始可能没想到要朱令的命,她只不过想再次教训下朱令,所以加大了剂量,但自己当时并没有索命的意图,满脑都是报复的快感。
  案件公开后,20051223日, 孙维的心理压力巨大,她应该是承受了很多的质疑、指责和谩骂。她在给其他四人的信中是如此描述的:“无论如何,不管发生什么,我都不断对自己说:‘我不是 世界上最可怜的人,我永远不会被打垮。有太多的人比我过得要苦难得多。因此我现在经历的都不算什么。例如,朱令的家庭更可怜,他们受的苦要多得多。’(Anyway, no matter what happens, I always repeat to myself, that I am not the poorest person in world and I will never be knocked down. There are too many examples that people sufferied much much more that I do. So what I’m now experiencing is nothing. For example, Zhu Ling’s family is more poorer, and they sufferred much much more.

看完这句话,真感到齿冷啊。孙维的心理调节与她的作案动机是一致的。因嫉妒而起加害之心,并在后期用朱令做对比,来调节和缓解自己的心理压力。这一切,都是源于孙维强大的自我意识,还有她自认为为了其他四个人做出的伟大的自我牺牲。2006112日孙维的信中进一步提到:“他们越想折磨我,我就越要过得好,更好地享受生活”(The more they want to torture me, I more I will live better and enjoy more about life!)所以,指望孙维自我忏悔,夜不能寐的朋友们,你们可以醒醒了。同时,她对重新升温的网络压力倍加关注,这几天,她在天涯开始频繁登陆发言,我也确定,她在新浪微博上也在关注着这一切。



借用一句话:让牺牲成为我的救赎,让黑暗成为我的光” 。孙维,你的救赎何时到来?

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