June 15, 2019

THERE IS NO CHINA:

How Hong Kong's Leader Made the Biggest Political Retreat by China Under Xi (Keith Bradsher, June 15, 2019, NY Times)

The risk for the Hong Kong government is that the public, particularly the young, may develop the impression that the only way to stop unwanted policy initiatives is through violent protests. With each successive major issue since Britain returned Hong Kong to Chinese rule in 1997, the level of violence at protests has risen before the government has relented and changed course.

As many as a million people marched peacefully a week ago against the extradition bill. But the government's stance did not begin to shift until a smaller demonstration unfolded on Wednesday. It began peacefully until some protesters pried up bricks and threw them at police officers, and police responded by firing rubber bullets and tear gas.  [...]

The extradition bill debacle underlines Beijing's central dilemma in Hong Kong. It wants to retain complete control, and so does not want to allow full democracy in the semiautonomous territory.

[W]ithout democracy, a succession of Hong Kong governments have blundered into political crises by underestimating or ignoring the public's concerns -- and each time, Beijing gets some of the blame.



Posted by at June 15, 2019 3:34 PM

  

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