26 November, 2021

This Case Seems Really Suspicious

Chinese tennis star who accused party leader of abuse has disappeared and now (allegedly) recants by email – HotAir

If you have any kind of public platform in China and you dare to say something the government doesn’t like, there’s a very good chance you will disappear. It has happened to bloggers covering the COVID outbreak, to billionaires, to doctors, to Chinese movie stars and now it seems to be happening to tennis star Peng Shuai.

Earlier this month, Peng wrote a post on the Chinese social media site Weibo accusing a senior member of the Communist Party named Zhang Gaoli of sexually assaulting her:

In the 1,500-character post, Peng gave a detailed account of her encounters with Zhang, now 75, which began a decade ago. Peng claims, in her post, she had an on-again, off-again affair with Zhang, who was married, starting before he rose up the party ranks and became vice premier.

About three years ago, after Zhang retired from his role, he invited her over to his house to play tennis with him and his wife. She said he then sexually assaulted her while his wife stood outside guarding the door…


Then someone claiming to be her sent an email in English recanting the whole story. The WTA isn’t buying it.

It was sent to the WTA Chairman and CEO Steve Simon, CGTN reported.

Simon has said he doubts the email is authentic.

“The statement released today by Chinese state media concerning Peng Shuai only raises my concerns as to her safety and whereabouts,” Simon said in a statement. “I have a hard time believing that Peng Shuai actually wrote the email we received or believes what is being attributed to her.”

He added: “Peng Shuai must be allowed to speak freely, without coercion or intimidation from any source. Her allegation of sexual assault must be respected, investigated with full transparency and without censorship.”

American media isn’t buying it either.

As Patrick McEnroe points out in this clip, the WTA approach to this issue is basically the opposite of the NBA approach to China. Instead of softening its tone, Steve Simon is basically calling BS on this email and demanding an investigation of the retired party official she accused. It’s good to see some people in the sports world still have a little backbone.


Something smells.

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