(NaturalNews) Imagine being arrested, imprisoned and tortured simply for holding religious beliefs that run contrary to what the government considers acceptable. And every day having to worry that you might be murdered at a moment's notice for your vital organs. This is what countless thousands of practitioners of the spiritual discipline Falun Gong have apparently been subjected to in China, a little-known reality covered in the new documentary film Red Reign: The Bloody Harvest of China's Prisoners.
The film, which is available for instant streaming at Programs.NaturalNews.com, brings to light a horrific practice that, up until now, has been mostly veiled from public view. Religious prisoners throughout China continue to be not only persecuted for their beliefs but also used as profit machines in a massive, and highly illegal, organ trafficking trade that generates as much as $1.2 billion in blood money annually.
"This story had to be told, yet the story seemed almost too horrible to tell," says Masha Savitz, the first-time filmmaker who created the film.
A journalist for the China watchdog site The Epoch Times, Savitz says she first became aware of the Chinese organ trade back in 2000 when she was sent to cover a rally being led by Nobel Peace Prize nominee David Matas, a lawyer and activist who is also featured in the film. Through her work, Savitz ended up meeting actual exiles from the organ trade, and from there realized that she could not just sit idly by while these human rights abuses persisted.
"The story took on a dimension of itself," explained Savitz to a local Jewish congregation in Los Angeles, which recently screened the film. "It was not about people, but of Good versus Evil. It had nothing to do with politics."
Though an unpleasant topic, the Chinese organ trade needs to be addressed
Normally accustomed to bringing smiles to children's faces, Savitz, who is also a kindergarten teacher and a vice principle, says bringing to light China's nefarious organ trade has been a difficult task. But it is one that she believes is vitally important, especially because her own people have been persecuted time and time again throughout history for their religious beliefs.
"It was very hard for me because so much of my work is to bring joy to people and make them laugh," said Savitz. "A big part of what I did in this film is to be caring of my audience and of how they were going to receive it."
Some subjects, though, needed to be addressed in full, sobering detail, including the account of a former surgeon who says he personally removed the corneas of some 2,000 Falun Gong prisoners in Chinese hospitals over the course of three years. Unrelenting guilt eventually caught up with this surgeon, who admitted that none of his cornea "donors" survived their surgeries.
This type of thing is happening all across China, and Savitz's film provides a deeper look into just how widespread this appalling practice actually is. Featuring interviews with former Falun Gong prisoners, journalists, politicians, humans rights activists and others, Red Reign is a gripping, powerful and timely account of how intolerance and greed can lead to some of the most heinous crimes against humanity imaginable.
"I've always been a serious artist," emphasized Savitz about her work. "I want to talk about important things. Teaching is doing something important; communicating is something important. That is the through-line in my life."