The ETIM: China's Islamic Militants and the Global Terrorist Threat

By J. Todd Reed; Diana Raschke | Go to book overview

2
The Contemporary and Historical
Contexts of Uyghur Separatism

This chapter places the ETIM in the contemporary and historical contexts of Uyghur separatism. The first section summarizes the Uyghurs’ current grievances. The second section sketches Uyghur nationalism in general and describes specific organizations, both nonviolent and militant, that claim to act on behalf of the Uyghur people. The third and final section outlines key events in the long history of militant Uyghur separatism and discusses the factors shaping Uyghur separatism today.


UYGHUR GRIEVANCES

Uyghur separatists claim the right to independence from China based on their shared ethno-religious identity and a history of unfair treatment by the Chinese state. The Uyghurs’ long-standing grievances against Beijing are cultural, religious, economic, and environmental. The Han Chinese dominate Xinjiang’s local government, education system, and commercial sector. Uyghur activists regard Beijing’s governance as a sustained program of assimilation and exploitation. They argue that the PRCs policies systematically erode the Uyghurs’ identity as a distinct cultural group; inhibit the practice of Islam, which is a central component of Uyghur ethnic identity; concentrate Xinjiang’s wealth in the hands of the Han Chinese; and exploit Xinjiang’s resources without regard for the local environment. Uyghur activists also claim human rights abuses are routine in Xinjiang, as the government

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The ETIM: China's Islamic Militants and the Global Terrorist Threat
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • 1 - Introduction 1
  • 2 - The Contemporary and Historical Contexts of Uyghur Separatism 17
  • 3 - The Etim’s Origins, Evolution, Ideology, Rhetoric, and Activities 46
  • 4 - The Etim’s Transnational Presence 68
  • 5 - The Etim and the Prcs Political Agenda 81
  • 6 - The Etim and U.S. Policy 98
  • Appendix A - Uyghur Separatism Timeline 113
  • Appendix B - PRC News Releases about the Etim 117
  • Appendix C - Etim Member Biographies 161
  • Notes 177
  • Bibliography 213
  • Index 239
  • About the Authors 245
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