• StreetlightX
    4.2k
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/asia/harrowing-video-that-shocked-hong-kong-shows-cycle-of-escalating-violence-20190901-p52mv9.html

    "Black clad special forces police storm through the train, wielding batons. More police, dubbed “raptors” by HK’s protest movement, stand at the doorways of the carriage - the only escape route - and spray pepper spray directly at screaming passengers. ... More video shows police striking a protester already on the ground, squashed beneath a scrum of police knees. When they realise a South China Morning Post reporter is videoing the scene, they try to block his camera.

    "HK lawyer and commentator Kevin Yam says each weekend seems to provide a more likely excuse for Carrie Lam to enact emergency legislation, as the government not only fails to stop street protests but more importantly loses the battle for the HK public’s hearts and minds. "If we look back over the escalation of violence in the last month there is one consistent pattern - when there is a hardcore of protesters that go a little bit too far with their actions, the police always respond with action that goes way further than the protesters.

    With Lam refusing to respond to protester’s demands with even the simplest action - formally withdrawing an extradition bill she has said won’t proceed - the cycle of violence in HK appears set to worsen."

    Fuck the HK state and their castrated leaders.
  • ssu
    1.6k
    The Hong Kong protests show quite clearly how Communist China will fail.

    First and foremost, the Chinese leadership and the Chinese Communist Party is literally afraid of one thing: their own people.

    And once the elite is truly fearful of it's own people, the society is basically incapable of truly developing. That failure will be quite detrimental in the long run. Communist China has a long history of this. Not just Tiananmen Square in 1989, but also earlier.

    When the popular first Premier of the People's Republic of China and foreign minister Zhou En Lai died, Chinese people flocked to mourn En Lai. This didn't go well with Mao as the people seemed to be far too eager to mourn Zhou En Lai. Dictators have a natural obsession against any other person gaining popularity, even in death. Hence when actually quite spontaneously two million Chinese gathered in Tiananmen Square to remember Zhou En Lai, it was all too much for the officials and they stopped and 'crushed' the gathering now called the the Tiananmen Incident. For the outsider this sounds totally absurd: that officials attack people mourning the death of a party leader, but in the absurd Maoist China it made total sense. And going against protesters in Hong Kong is in line with history.

    Trying to crush demonstrations in Hong Kong makes total sense for China now: enough time has gone since the United Kingdom handed over it's former colony to show the truthful face of the fascist regime. They are in a situation now that they don't need so much the West anymore as they did earlier.
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    The Hong Kong protests show quite clearly how Communist China will fail.

    First and foremost, the Chinese leadership and the Chinese Communist Party is literally afraid of one thing: their own people.
    ssu

    I would not conflate the people of HK with the people of China. While I can only speak for Beijing - I've not been outside the capital - the Chinese citizenry are far more loyal, trusting, and accepting of the State than are HKers. The Chinese state commands the allegiance of their people in ways hard to fathom for many Westerns. The State is China, in a way that is not separable into distinct units. That said, this applies far more to the Han majority than any of the other minority ethnicities in the country, who are variously treated like refuse when necessary.
  • ssu
    1.6k
    the Chinese citizenry are far more loyal, trusting, and accepting of the State than are HKers.StreetlightX
    Definately, but that's not the point.

    A totalitarian one party cannot be sure of just how loyal and trusting the people are. It inherently cannot know just how much the people truly love it because it is a totalitarian entity, it doesn't accept opposition and there isn't a way to voice out critique any other way than people going to the barricades.

    The Chinese Communists can surely pat themselves on their backs of the historical economic growth that China has enjoyed. They can now that there is genuine support for them, but they cannot be sure just how far that goes.
  • frank
    3.4k
    A totalitarian one party cannot be sure of just how loyal and trusting the people are. It inherently cannot know just how much the people truly love it because it is a totalitarian entity, it doesn't accept opposition and there isn't a way to voice out critique any other way than people going to the barricades.ssu

    Totalitarian governments work pretty well especially when there's a state religion that backs up the legitimacy of the government. The love of the people isn't needed. Things have to get pretty bad before people put aside their daily lives and devote themselves to revolution. All is well as long as there is some measure of prosperity.

    Still, it's a good time to watch Zhang Yimou's Hero, which explains that the Chinese are willing to sacrifice for the sake of peace, even if it shatters their hearts in the process. Are we all like that?
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    Yeah, the moves continue...
  • Evil
    168
    (what became a) double post
  • Wallows
    9k
    Im wondering as to why HK is even considered a threat in PRC eyes? Perhaps ssu can chime in here and expose more of the blind obedience demanded from HKers by the PRC?
  • iolo
    126
    I gather from some of my HK sources that he whole business is getting mixed up with the Trump/China conflict, with American sources providing all sorts of useful subsidies for the protestors. Pity: it will stop their case being seriously heard by the Chinese bosses.
  • frank
    3.4k
    Pity: it will stop their case being seriously heard by the Chinese bosses.iolo

    A Chinese friend tells me there was never any chance of that. Do you disagree?
  • Benkei
    2.1k
    I have not found anything remotely trustworthy on this so I find it suspect that this would be the case. There's some American flag waving as a symbol of democracy (weird, I know).
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    One ought to treat all reports of American intervention into HK with suspicion: not only because it partakes of the shitty trope of Western saviours swooping in from without, but also because it denies the agency of the Hong Kong people as acting on their own behalf. Given what the HK people have been through and continue to go through, it's almost insulting.

    It also plays right into the hands of PRC propagandists who would write off the protests as nothing more than an American neoimperialist plot. It is one of the single best ways to discredit the entire movement. This isn't to say that the US isn't probably poking their filthy fingers into Hong Kong pies, only that those issues should be side stories of auxiliary interest at best.
  • iolo
    126


    Frank - 'A Chinese friend tells me there was never any chance of that. Do you disagree?'

    Some sort of diplomatic fudge, conceivably: they still find Hong Kong commercially useful.

    benkei - competitive international politics is deeply depressing, isn't it!
  • Benkei
    2.1k
    benkei - competitive international politics is deeply depressing, isn't it!iolo

    I'm not sure how this relates to my earlier comment. What do you mean?
  • iolo
    126
    I'm not sure how this relates to my earlier comment. What do you mean?Benkei

    Perhaps I misunderstood what you were saying. Automatically the people on one side are convinced while those on the other believe it is propaganda. My informants had various political positions, so it seems very likely, but we won't be allowed to know, will we? Don't you, as a person involved with a philosophy site, find that depressing?
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    For those who don't know, HK just invoked emergency powers to ban face masks in public places. This will be interesting. I can't imagine that this will have any other effect than to further inflame the protests - masks are readily available and this seems almost deliberately designed to provoke altercations and civil disobedience. They are already in wide circulatuon and are useful to stave off the effects of tear gas and capture by facial recognition. It reads as an attempt to push the protesters off a 'legitimacy cliff', and it makes an already volatile situation potentially even more deadly.
  • alcontali
    702
    The lease was up and the handover is a done deal. The rock was going to be returned to China; and now it has. After expiration of the transitional special administrative regime, Hong Kong is supposed to become an ordinary Chinese municipality while everybody who lives there will become ordinary Chinese citizens. There is just not going to be any backpedalling on the provisions of the handover treaty. Even though the Brits, unlike the Portuguese in Macao, were politically not in a position to offer UK passports to every Hong Kong resident, the UK government has tremendously facilitated obtaining passports in Canada, Australia and New Zealand for Hong Kong residents. In that sense, anybody who wanted to leave the rock has had ample opportunity to do so.
  • Benkei
    2.1k
    Perhaps I misunderstood what you were saying. Automatically the people on one side are convinced while those on the other believe it is propaganda. My informants had various political positions, so it seems very likely, but we won't be allowed to know, will we? Don't you, as a person involved with a philosophy site, find that depressing?iolo

    Ah, I'm sure you have good reason to believe them. All I have to say is that it isn't corroborated so you might want to take it with a grain of salt because of it.

    I don't find it depressing though. It makes it interesting how to come to an accurate assessment about situations. Usually withholding judgment for a month or three is a good rule of thumb for anything political.
  • Benkei
    2.1k
    For those who don't know, HK just invoked emergency powers to ban face masks in public places. This will be interesting. I can't imagine that this will have any other effect than to further inflame the protests - masks are readily available and this seems almost deliberately designed to provoke altercations and civil disobedience. They are already in wide circulatuon and are useful to stave off the effects of tear gas and capture by facial recognition. It reads as an attempt to push the protesters off a 'legitimacy cliff', and it makes an already volatile situation potentially even more deadly.StreetlightX

    I thought they're already branded as rioters and over the legitimacy cliff?
  • StreetlightX
    4.2k
    Not illegitimate enough to hail down live bullets upon them en masse. The protestors have so far been supremely disciplined - much too disciplined to make a protest-ending move on without a cover of pretence. This might just provide it.

    And then out will come the bootlickers saying 'tsk tsk they should have been less demanding, see what happened now?'. Just watch for that reaction.
  • Benkei
    2.1k
    We've seen with the Krim how countries will react to an escalation.

    I'm not very optimistic.
  • ssu
    1.6k

    Annexation of a large part of a neighbouring state and basically starting a war there is a little bit different than one sovereign state having internal political problems.

    Who remembers anymore that Spain was a short time ago on the brink of coming apart?
    Who cares?

    cataloniaref_1200x675.jpg

    The trick here is not to kill people. Killing protesters is a taboo. Killing people makes an ugly statistic. It looks bad. Other countries have to respond to it...especially when they aren't your allies. You are way out of line when you start killing protesters. Water canons, rubber bullets, first aid to detained protesters so that they don't die, controlling the media and the internet feed from the demonstrations and simply controlling the discourse about the events is the more professional strategy these days.
  • iolo
    126
    I don't find it depressing though. It makes it interesting how to come to an accurate assessment about situations. Usually withholding judgment for a month or three is a good rule of thumb for anything political.Benkei

    All that means is that the various powers-that-be have made up their minds what to say. They will never give out any serious facts.
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