Posts tagged ‘Hong Kong’

Thursday, June 4, 2020

June 4 Anniversary and Hong Kong: Broke Horses and Resisting Horses

I think there have been two moments when Chinese people of my age basically told me two things.

a) Yes, they had been among the 1989 protesters, be it in Beijing, be it in other places in China.

b) They had come to understand since how wrong they had been back in 1989, and what a calamity they had all been spared by the crackdown.

In both cases, I listened, nodded, and didn’t argue. I didn’t believe them a word. And I felt I was listening to another chapter from a universal story of human weakness, just as Pasternak’s Dr. Zhivago had, again, many decades earlier, and who had said that “it was like listening to a horse describing how it broke itself in.”

I didn’t argue because I felt that I hadn’t been in their place, that I still wasn’t in their place, and because I knew them beyond their (rather pathetic) political point of view. We were friends, or sort of friends. Hadn’t we known each other personally, and had it been an online encounter, we would probably have had a fierce debate.

Work style – CCTV evening news on July 24, 2013.

This comes to my mind when I read triumphant Chinese news articles about how many signatures had been collected by now, in support of the “security law for Hong Kong”. Obviously, I have no way of knowing if the numbers are real – and I don’t know how many bosses have “nudged” their staff to sign, or else.

People have to survive. There seems to be a rule: a majority of people will only be prepared to fight for their freedoms when they see a chance to succeed at it. That hope is waning in Hong Kong. It is, on the other hand, very much there in Taiwan. The rule that bleak situations break morals isn’t universal, as shown by exceptions. But it is often broad enough to work in favor of those who abuse their powers.

I can’t blame anyone. But I’m critical of a certain kind of “self-broke horse”. That’s the horse that denies the pressures and the threats, that argues that it recognized a necessity, acted accordingly, and that those horses that continue to resist the necessity would be obnoxious or dangerous. That’s a likely pattern of argument once the self-broke horse has “seen the light”, because every horse that remains noticeably free – or resisting – challenges, by its mere existence, not only the people in power, but also the broke horse itself.

A society could be more relaxed if broke horses could admit – even if only to themselves or in private – that they simply don’t want to live a – supposedly too difficult or painful – dissident’s life, or that they want to be happy, and that their happiness requires a certain monthly income, i. e. a favorable career. The problems begin to explode when they try to link their rather personal desires to “something greater”, and when freedom and conscience aren’t the “greater things” of choice, it will most probably be “the motherland”.

China’s rulers understood that, and they fostered such tensions. That’s why they pushed “patriotic education” in mainland China in the 1990s – to fill the void left behind by the crushed hopes of 1989, and to cater to nationalist feelings that had been there anyway – among many 1989 protestors, too.

Here in Germany, I have sometimes heard people vent anger about Wolf Biermann, an East German singer and songwriter who was stripped of his citizenship and exiled by the East German authorities in 1976, while he was on a pre-approved tour of  West Germany.

Biermann had been a vocal critic of East Berlin – a dissident. He hasn’t been much of a critic of Western flaws after 1976. In fact, he embraced all the good and bad things the West had to offer – imperialism included.

One should be aware of that. Biermann is no saint. But he has done more than most of us. He opposed a regime. That may not be enough for a lifetime – but it’s more than what most of us would be prepared to do.

So let’s be grateful for the courageous. Not to hate them for their integrity is a good first step into the right direction. To learn from them – within the realms of our abilities – should be a good second step.

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Updates / Related

365 days, Tsai Ing-wen, June 4, 2020
Sacrificed and gained, Sui Muqing, June 2, 2020

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Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Hong Kong Security Secretary: “Terrorism breeding in HK, iron fact”

The following is a translation of an RTHK (Radio Television Hong Kong) report on yesterday’s LegCo security panel session. Translated off the cuff. If you find mistakes, please let me know.

Links within blockquote added during translation.

Police have said that from last year to now there have been 14 cases involving explosives, four cases of genuine arms, and 76 arrested, of who 30 had already been prosecuted. Security Bureau secretary John Lee Ka-chiu said that this illustrated that local terrorism was breeding in Hong Kong. He emphasized that counter-terrorism was a responsibility of the entire population, and called on the public to cooperate in law enforcement. The authorities would strike with the strictest laws.

警方說,去年至今出現14宗涉及爆炸品及4宗真槍的案件,共拘捕76人,30人已被檢控。保安局局長李家超說,顯示本土恐怖主義正在香港滋生,強調反恐是全民責任,呼籲公眾配合執法,當局會以最嚴厲的法律打擊。

At the Legislative Council’s Panel on Security meeting, John Lee Ka-chiu said he believed that in various violent [events] there had been financial funding organizations and assistance, such as supplies of helmets, gas masks, weapons and umbrellas, etc., and there had been cases where such material had been provided from ranks behind to the first lines. John Lee Ka-chiu described great numbers of resources, and a lot of related material left behind on the streets after insurrection. He believed that because of the authorities’ recent effective strikes, and maybe because of decreasing funding from abroad, such equipment had been reduced in recent violent incidents.

在立法會保安事務委員會會議上,李家超說,相信在不同暴力中都有資金提供組織及支援,例如提供頭盔、防毒面罩、武器和雨傘等,亦出現將有關物品由後方提供到前方的情況。李家超形容資源很多,而在暴動過後很多有關物品留在街上,他相信由於當局近期有效打擊,又或者是外來資金減少,近期暴力事件中,有關裝備已減少。

Legislative Council member Claudia Mo Man-ching asked the authorities to provide evidence for the cases mentioned, and asked if the authorities had been part of terrorism in the Yuen Long July 21 incident of last year. John Lee Ka-chiu retorted that the other side should not trivialize the violence and added that evidence would be seen in court, describing this as an iron fact.

議會陣線毛孟靜要求當局就提到的案件提供證據,又詢問當局去年元朗7.21事件是否屬本土恐怖主義。李家超反駁對方不要淡化暴力,又說上到法庭就會見到證物,形容是鐵一般的事實。

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Related

Attendance list, June 2, 2020
Background brief, June 2, 2020
For discussion, June 2, 2020

HK officers in Xinjiang, SCMP, Jan 9, 2019

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Sunday, January 19, 2020

“A Hong Konger, too”

BBC, Nov 27, 2019

Monday, January 13, 2020

A second Term for President Tsai Ing-wen

我也要向大家保證,絕對不會因為勝利,就忘記了反省。過去這四年,我們有成績,但是也有不足的地方。台灣人民願意再給我們四年,我們會把做不夠的、來不及做的,做得更好、做得更多。

I promise that I will not stop reflecting and improving after winning this election. We have made progress over the past four years, but we also have our shortcomings. Now that the Taiwanese people have given us four more years, we will do more and be better, to make up for areas where we fell short or have not yet finished our work.

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Related

Re-elected, not just for being tough in China, NY Times, Jan 12, 2020
Written English version, CNA (Focus Taiwan), January 11, 2020

Thursday, October 17, 2019

CCTV News, Oct 12: High-Quality Employment

The following is a translation of a news item from CCTV‘s 19:00 h flagship newscast “Xinwen Lianbo”, titled Efforts in many fields for the steady realization of high-quality employment (多领域发力 稳步实现高质量就业, main link).

The statistics should be taken with some salt – there isn’t much reason to believe that Xi Jinping‘s “new era” (spelling higher pressure on regional and local officials to deliver victorious results) whould come with more accurate numbers than in the previous decade of collective leadership. However, the reports are probably not completely out of tune with daily lives either, because that would make for rather inefficient propaganda.

While CCTV apparently authored the news item, other websites have republished it, including that of the Chinese state council and Sina.com.

This news item came after coverage on Xi Jinping’s visit to India and his talks with Indian prime minister Narendra Modi (items 1 and 2), and Li Keqiang chairing a session of the national energy commission (item 3).

It was then followed (and ideologically complemented) by news about cultural activities in all regions to promote “patriotism” (item 5), young students striving to become “keepers of the dream of national rejuvenation” (item 6), and visiting students from Hong Kong experiencing the great era and merging into national development (item 7).

Ticker: help companies' rapid development - cut taxes

Familiar approach: “help companies’ rapid development – tax reductions set them free” – click photo for video

Xinwen Lianbo — Employment is the biggest livelihood of the people. From January to August this year, 9.84 million new jobs have been added at city and town levels, thus arriving at nearly ninety percent of the planned number this year. Behind the generally stable employment situation is increased employment quality and a richer development scene.

央视网消息(新闻联播):就业是最大的民生。今年1至8月,我国城镇新增就业984万人,完成了全年计划的近九成,就业形势整体稳定的背后,是就业更高质量、更充分发展的新图景。

As night falls, tourists in Yichang, Hubei Province, prepare to board a pleasure boat for a night trip on the Yangtze River.

夜幕降临,在湖北宜昌,游客们准备登游轮夜游长江。

One of the Yangtze nighttime travelling project’s features is that it has added two-hundred new jobs. A mountain light show put up by Hengpocun village at Pingyao, Shanxi Province, has not only kept all villagers from idling, but has also brought more than three-hundred villagers from peripheral villages into employment, too. The number of entities taking part in the Jiangnan1) “evening economy” has reached ten-thousand households and has brought more than 11,000 people into work.

宜昌一个长江夜游项目的推出,就增加了近200个就业岗位;山西平遥横坡村布设的山间灯光展,不仅让全村无闲人,还带动周边村庄300多人就业;济南参与“夜间经济”的市场主体达到1万户,带动就业超过11,000人。

The newly developing economy’s vitality broadens the scale of employment. The emergence of new industries and the upgradings of traditional ones create more high-class and more high-quality employment opportunities.

新兴经济的活力源,扩大着就业规模。而新产业的出现和传统产业的升级,创造着更多高层次和更高质量就业机会。

In a warehouse at Jiaxing, Zhejiang Province, mechanical arm operator Wang Feifei runs about a dozen mechanical arms as scheduled. Once a manual worker packing the warehouse’s outgoing goods, the company’s production line mechanization upgrades have helped him to discover job upgrading opportunities, too. By taking part in training courses, he didn’t only rise from a worker’s position to that of an engineer, but his payment has also risen by nearly 40 percent.

在浙江嘉兴1的一家物流仓库,机械臂操作师王飞飞操纵着十几台机械臂有序忙碌着。曾经作为人工出库打包员的他,企业生产线的机械化升级,让他也发现了职业升级的机会。通过参加培训,他不仅从普通工人升级为了工程师,工资也增长了近40%。

Nowadays, more manpower is moving from traditional industries to the internet and digital economy, as well as to other new industries. The China Academy of Information and Communications Technology‘s (CAICT) “2019 China Digital Economy Development and Employment White Paper” shows that in 2018, China’s digital economy’s job number was at 191 million, with an increase widely above that of the overall number of newly created jobs nation-wide. A list published by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social security this year includes thirteen new professions, supporting people who are looking for more valuable and more personalized professional development.

如今,更多的劳动力从传统产业中转移出来,向互联网、数字经济等新行业发展。中国信息通信研究院发布的《中国数字经济发展与就业白皮书(2019年)》3显示,2018年中国数字经济领域就业岗位为1.91亿个,增速大大高于同期全国总就业规模增速。人社部今年公布了一张包含13个新职业的榜单,支持人们寻求更高价值、个性化职业发展。

Since this year, the state, by implementing more ample and more high-quality employment policies, has sustained pressure and compacting. To strengthen technical skills, 100 billion Yuan have been taken from unemployment insurance fund surpluses, to carry out skills upgrades and vocational retraining with a focus on university students, migrant workers and other key communities. Accurate classification and assistance in finding jobs, job security, universally beneficial tax cuts and non-wage labor cost reductions as well as other “burden reduction” measures have helped enterprises in keeping up their strength in creating jobs.

今年以来国家把实现更加充分、更高质量就业的政策持续压紧压实。强技能,国家从失业保险基金结余中拿出1000亿元实施职工技能提升和转岗转业培训;瞄重点,聚焦大学生、农民工等重点群体,精准分类,帮扶就业;稳岗位,实行普惠性减税、社保费率降低等一系列 “减负”措施,让企业就业承载力强。

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Notes

1) The actual CCTV script says “Jinan” (济南), which would be Shandong Province’s capital. This is probably a typo and should spell “Jiangnan”, i. e. the region south of the Yangze under this name.

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Related

Li Keqiang’s consolation tour, Febr 4, 2017
Li Keqiang visiting the poor, Febr 14, 2015

Sunday, September 15, 2019

The KMT’s last Chance: Waste Separation in Shanghai

Main Link: Anyone may criticize the KMT, but not former “honorary member” Terry Gou (王丰:谁都有资格批评国民党,但前“荣誉党员”郭台铭没有)

Wang Feng (王丰), born 1956 in Taichung, Taiwan, to a mother from Jiangsu and a father from Hubei, is president of the China Times Group. He is also an occasional interviewee of Guanchazhe, an online news and commentary portal based in Shanghai. The China Times has been owned by Tsai Eng-meng (蔡衍明), a China-leaning businessman, since 2008. While Taiwan’s pan-green political camp detests the paper and doubts its integrity, in turn, Wang Feng, defending the paper in July this year against accusations that it had been taking “phone calls” from China’s “Taiwan Affairs Office” (TAO), criticized the accusers, saying that freedom, democracy and human rights were Taiwan’s hard-won values, and that a pluralistic and democratic society was the only thing Taiwan had over China.

Reporters without Borders (RSF) criticized the China Times Media Group for filing a lawsuit against the Financial Times’ correspondent Kathrin Hille (who had apparently reported about the alleged link to the “TAO” first), calling the legal action abusive. There doesn’t seem to be any news online about if and how the group’s legal proceedings have continued since.

That wasn’t an issue in Wang Feng’s most recent interview with Guanchazhe (published on Saturday) either. It centers around Foxconn founder Terry Gou‘s (郭台銘) withdrawal from the KMT, which had made him an honorary member only in April.

Based on opinion polling, Gou lost the KMT primaries to Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) in July this year.

Han Kuo-yu is now the KMT’s nominee, and therefore the KMT’s official challenger of incumbent president Tsai Ing-wen (DPP),  in Taiwan’s presidential elections, scheduled for January 11, 2020. However, his chances to emerge as Taiwan’s next president have faltered, not least since the beginning of large-scale demonstrations in Hong Kong, against a (now apparently scrapped) extradition law draft by the special administrative zone’s government. The Hong Kong events seem to have raised the Taiwanese public’s awareness of what the “one-country-two-system” approach, advocated by China’s party and state leader Xi Jinping as a “model” for Taiwan, would mean in practice, and an apparent unpreparedness by Han Kuo-yu to criticize Beijing has added to his problems on the campaign trail.

Criticizing Beijing, of course, is nothing Wang Feng would do either, nor would it be something Guanchazhe could publish anyway. If the KMT (rather than Taiwan in general) has any advantage over China in Wang’s book, it wouldn’t be “pluralistic and democratic Society” (as stated in his announcement to sue the Financial Times and the Taiwanese media who had referred to the FT’s Coverage), but the KMT’s potential skills in managing waste separation in, say, Shanghai (比如国民党的环保能力非常强,现在上海在搞垃圾分类,国民党可以派人来当顾问,帮大陆做得更方便、更干净). In such fields, the KMT should enter a competition with the Chinese Communist Party, Wang said, not so much in terms of votes (obviously), but in helping Taiwanese compatriots to leave a favorable Impression on mainland compatriots” (争取人心,不是去争取选票,而是要争取大陆同胞对台湾同胞的好感), and in making peoples’ lives easier.

The “big picture” Wang drafts for the KMT in the interview might be summed up as think global, act in China, suggesting that solving China’s (environmental) problems would contribute to solving the world’s problems. His interview can also be seen as part of Guanchazhe’s efforts to prepare the Chinese public (or the share of it that cares) for a (no longer unlikely) re-election of Tsai Ing-wen as Taiwan’s president.

Terry Wang, apparently a very sensitive man when his own professional integrity, or that of his paper, is called into question, doesn’t mince his words about Terry Gou. As a man who had portrayed himself as a principled man who believed in Mazu and Guan Gong, Gou hadn’t done himself a favor by withdrawing  from the KMT, “neither in terms of business nor politically” (换言之,他现今的脱党举动会在他未来不管是企业还是从政的道路上,布下一个非常不好的变数,而所谓的变数就是让人对他的诚信产生根本的否定), Wang says. He also cites Gou’s management style at Foxconn as an example as to how void his recent criticism of the KMT actually were. After all, if Gou – contrary to the KMT old guards – was indeed a modernizer, he could have democratized Foxconn (郭台铭不“迂腐陈旧”,难道鸿海敢搞企业民主、开明治理吗).

As for the state of the KMT’s unity, Wang suggests a numerical game to predict how the Party would fare:

There is a precondition for the KMT being united, and it is that their candidate must be in a safe zone of winning the elections, or moving close to losing. In such situations, there is a likelihood for unity. If Han Kuo-yu’s support rate isn’t more than 30 percent, but 20 percent or lower, the KMT may split.

国民党的团结必须有一个大前提,就是候选人是在胜选的安全区域,或接近落选的危险边缘,这样他们才有团结的可能性。如果韩国瑜今天不是30%多的支持度,而是20%多或更低,那么国民党就会是分裂的。我刚还在想,国民党的这些人跟战国七雄很相似,他们心中永远有个战国心态,就是“老子弱的时候,就臣服于强者;老子强的时候,又蠢蠢欲动想分裂”。

According to Radio Taiwan International‘s (RTI) German service on September 12, Gou may register as an independent candidate until September 17. He is widely expected to run for president as an independent now. That, however, could force him to state his positions, much more explicitly than up to now, reckons Frozen Garlic, a blogger who has focused on the topic of Taiwan’s elections for more than nine years. Even though Gou had mostly served platitudes during a visit to Chiayi city council earlier this month (and before withdrawing his KMT honorary Membership),

[e]very time Gou speaks, he gives Tsai [DPP] and Han [KMT] an opening to question him and force him to defend his positions and the implications of those positions.

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Related

“We uphold our principles,” Jan 2, 2019

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Updates/Related

Gou bows out, RTI, Sept 17, 2019

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Thursday, July 25, 2019

Huanqiu Shibao editorial: “Pillar of Humiliation” for “Hong Kong Traitors”

Huanqiu Shibao editorial, July 25, 2019. Links within blockquotes added during translation — JR
The piece seems to mark a departure from a moderate, “positive” style Huanqiu Shibao had taken a few years ago, and a return to more strident presentation of China as a potential victim to “foreign forces'” imperialism, and to character assassination.

click picture for CCTV coverage on Xinhua editorial

Hong Kong also featured prominently in recent Xinwen Lianbo news, the main CCTV new broadcast at 19 hours China local time. This was also the case last night:  Hong Kong people from all walks of life condemn foreign forces’ interference in Hong Kong’s affairs / Hong Kong must not tolerate incitement of trouble by foreign forces / Xinhua quoted: In- and outside forces ganging up to shamefully harming Hong Kong.

But back to “Huanqiu Shibao”‘s editorial.

Main Link: Hong Kong’s new batch of baffling modern traitors (香港出了一批有迷惑性的现代汉奸)

In the process of Hong Kong’s extremist forces’ demonstrations becoming more and more violent, the involvement of Western forces, too, becomes more and more obvious. Their involvement in the fermentation in Hong Kong’s society can not be separated from a number of traitorous persons who cooperate with and assist [those forces]. Jimmy Lai, Martin Lee and others can be rated as representatives of this number of traitors.

在香港极端势力示威越来越暴力化的过程中,西方势力的介入越来越公开化,而这种介入在香港社会发酵,离不开一批汉奸人物的配合与助攻。黎智英、李柱铭等人堪称这批汉奸的代表者。

The controversy about a legislation draft in Hong Kong has turned into turmoil all over the territory of Hong Kong. It has wreaked havoc and has pounded the foundations of rule of law in Hong Kong. The dramatic developments “rhyme” very well with the global tensions in Chinese-American relations. From last to this year, Jimmy Lai’s, Martin Lee’s and other old-hand “democratic leaders'” contacts with US and Western governments have reached unprecedented closeness, increasingly taking the shape of unbridled collusion in the support of the inflated Hong Kong street politics. This growing collusion provides Hong Kong street politics with its evil fuel.

香港围绕一项立法的争议激化成全港大动荡,直至暴力肆虐,冲击到香港法治的根基,事态的戏剧性发展与中美关系出现全局性紧张的大环境是非常“押韵”的。从去年到今年,黎智英、李柱铭等老牌“民主领袖”与美国及西方政府、议会的接触达到空前密度,形成越来越肆无忌惮的勾结,这些勾结为香港街头政治的膨胀提供了罪恶的燃料。

And that’s not all. These extremists have noticed that the strategic contest between China and America is intensifying, that Washington spares no effort to find levers and to put pressure on China. They actively exploit the opportunity and squeeze the ocean with their own importance, but also make every effort to display their usefulness in squeezing China.

事态的演变不仅于此。这批极端人物看到中美的战略博弈逐渐趋紧,华盛顿不遗余力地启动能够对北京施加压力的各种杠杆,他们积极地往上凑,不仅挟洋自重,而且极力向美方展示自己协助遏制中国的工具意义。

These people have wild ambitions: to turn Hong Kong into a special field of the strategic game between China and the US, to help maximize Washington’s and the West’s influence grow in Hong Kong, to “balance” the basic law’s “one country” content and to minimize “one country, two systems”, even hollow the term out and make it lose any real substance, turning Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy under the “two systems” into actual independence.

这些人有一个野心:把香港变成中美战略博弈的特殊角力场,让华盛顿和西方在香港的影响最大化,“平衡”基本法中“一国”的内容,让“一国两制”机制中的“一国”最小化,甚至名存实亡,让“两制”下香港的高度自治成为实际上的独立。

There have always been traitors in the game between China and the outside world, and even appeared at critical moments of such standoffs. Apart from working as immediate forces for outside forces invading and suppressing China, but also helped to break the internal unity of Chinese people and help foreign forces to brainwash the Chinese. People like Jimmy Lai and Martin Lee are exact models of modern-age traitors.

汉奸都是出在中外博弈乃至发生对抗的特殊关头,他们的作用除了直接为侵略和打压中国的外部势力效力,还包括破坏中国人的内部团结,帮助外部势力给中国人洗脑。黎智英、李柱铭这些人就是典型的现代汉奸。

Playing the banner of striving for Hong Kongers’ “democracy” and “freedom”, these modern traitors are more baffling than traitors in history. They borrowed this banner from the American and Western forces that are attacking China. At the times when [those forces] advertised the spreading of “democracy” and “freedom” to China, their real goal was to prevent China from becoming rich and powerful, and to destroy the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

香港出的这批现代汉奸打着为港人争“民主”“自由”的旗号,比历史上的汉奸更具有迷惑性。他们的这一旗号是从美西方攻击中国的势力那里借过来的,后者在标榜对华传播“民主”“自由”的时候,真正锁定的是阻止中国走向强盛,破坏中华民族的伟大复兴。

Jimmy Lai’s and Martin Lee’s structures are small. They are only seeking their own and a small group’s benefit, but what they betray is the great objective of the Chinese nation. With American and Western forces, they build an alliance to pin China down, and what they have in common is that they lose their head because of material greed.

黎智英、李柱铭等人的格局很小,他们追求的仅仅是个人和小团体的利益,背叛的则是中华民族的大目标。他们与美西方的势力结成牵制中国崛起的同盟,利令智昏是近代以来汉奸们的共通点。

During his visit to the US in May this year, Martin Lee met with Pompeo, Pelosi, and others. Media coverage reflected that he clearly discussed the use of opposition against the “fugitives extradition” bill for tactics to strike at Hong Kong’s social order. Although “veteran” oppositionals like him and Jimmy Lai have lost their leadership role in the demonstrations against the bill, they still make every effort to freeload on the [protesters’] short-lived enthusiasm, fishing for ill-gotten political gains, and continuing their role as traitors.

李柱铭在今年5月的访美中与蓬佩奥、佩洛西等人见了面,媒体的报道反映出,他显然与美国高官商讨了利用反修订《逃犯条例》来打击香港秩序的策略。他和黎智英这批“老资格”的反对派虽然在反修例的示威中失去了主导权,但他们依然极力想蹭热度,捞取政治油水,继续发挥他们的汉奸作用。卖港和私赢在他们那里实为一回事。

Jimmy Lai has been described as Hong Kong opposition’s “largest financial backer”, but where his money comes from has always been questioned. More than a month ago, when Hong Kong’s situation became chaotic, his company’s shares rose sharply, making the questions reaching new heights. What kind of external benefit links his company’s capital has with American and Western capital is believed to be Jimmy Lai’s underpants which he doesn’t dare to show.

黎智英被称为香港反对派的“最大金主”,但他的钱是从哪儿来的一直饱受质疑。一个多月前香港局势乱起来,他公司的股票却突然暴涨,使这种质疑达到新的高潮。他的公司与美国和西方资本有什么外界不知道的利益关系,这被认为是黎智英不敢解衣示人的内裤。

To bring Hong Kong into the focus of Chinese-American games is also treason to the benefit of seven million Hong Kongers. America hasn’t any authority over Hong Kong, and outside regular trade links with Hong Kong, it won’t invest great resources into encouraging “democracy”. Freeloading for itself and its closest allies is Washington’s policy now. Washington’s only use for Hong Kong in this game with China is to mess Hong Kong up as an international financial center, to destroy harmony between mainland society’s harmony with Hong Kong, and to add any kind of trouble to pin down Beijing.

把香港变成中美博弈的新焦点,这同样是对香港七百多万市民利益的根本背叛。美国对香港无任何管治权,也不会在与香港正常贸易机制之外为鼓励它的“民主”大规模投入资源,华盛顿现在连对最亲密盟友也奉行揩油的政策。美方利用香港同中国博弈的唯一方式就是搞乱这个国际金融中心,破坏内地社会与香港的和谐,用在香港制造各种麻烦牵制北京。

The traitors Lai and Li have already quenched Washington’s urgent thirst for new game pieces. They aren’t in the trials of China’s history, but specializing in trying to please the Western forces, having assigned themselves to the American and Western camp to their bones.

黎、李这批汉奸解了华盛顿急需一张新牌的渴。他们不在乎中国历史的审判,更专注于取悦西方势力,他们已经在骨子里把自己归入到美国和西方阵营。

However, traitors have always been outside forces’ cheap goods of use, and have therefore also been looked down upon. Lai’s and Lee’s exits from the stage will certainly be be nailed to Hong Kong’s historic pillar of humiliation, and in the West, they will be forgotten ghosts.

然而汉奸在外部势力眼里从来就是廉价的利用品,而且他们在被利用的同时亦会受到鄙视。黎、李之流的下场一定会被钉到香港历史的耻辱柱上,而在西方那边,他们都将是过眼云烟的孤魂野鬼。

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Related

Szeto Wah, 1931 – 2011, Jan 2, 2011

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Updates / Related

Dialling up Rhetoric, SupChina, July 25, 2019
A traitor only needs to match the definition, Aug 25, 2009

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Friday, July 19, 2019

You want to defend Democracy, Mr. Rasmussen? Introduce a dedicated Property Tax

In an op-ed for The Guardian, former NATO secretary general Anders Fogh Rasmussen calls on Europe to

stand up for Taiwan’s self-determination and treat it as a fully-fledged member of the alliance of democracies. In a globally interdependent world, failure to defend our values in east Asia and beyond will eventually lead to the erosion of those same values at home.

The headline – (Now Europe must defend Taiwan) – is more spectacular than Rasmussen’s actual text, where the man who led the West’s military alliance from summer 2009 to fall 2014 doesn’t exactly call for a formal military alliance with Taiwan. As far as military cooperation is concerned, his op-ed remains vague.

It does, however, make tangible demands, by citing American measures in support of Taiwan as examples for Europe, or by accusing European governments of allowing China to bully them into accept its version of Taiwan’s status. Rasmussen also encourages the European Union’s incoming leadership to start practical measures to strengthen Taiwan’s position economically.

Op-eds like these are icebreakers – this one doesn‘t touch on “taboo” issues, at least not yet. And it remains to be seen if Rasmussen is up to a stronger European voice and economic policy in Taiwan‘s favor, or to full military cooperation. If the latter is the case, the EU would have a long way to go – it is anything but a “Pacific player”.

In 2014, Rasmussen wrote an op-ed for the Telegraph which was built in a similar way. Back then, he drew on Russia‘s annexation of Crimea and demanded to “invest in defence of democracy.” Now, he is drawing on the obvious crash of China‘s “one-country-two-systems” policy in Hong Kong.

Is Rasmussen‘s op-ed good news? Basically, yes. Taiwan needs support indeed, and supporters don‘t need to be likeable, as long as their support is sustainable. But Rasmussen’s suggestion that perhaps it had been “naive to believe that this erosion of Hong Kong’s democracy was not inevitable” is cute. I don‘t think that Michael Heseltine, the UK’s trade minister back then, gave democracy in Hong Kong much thought when he had his arguments with  Chris Patten.

What seems to become apparent is a rift within Europe. China, obviously, would love to see an ever-more integrated European Union, provided that such a union would collectively sing the correct tune on Beijing‘s policies, and on Taiwan. In western Europe, bigger countries seem to be less concerned about China‘s – or Russia‘s, for that matter – role in Europe than smaller ones, especially the Netherlands, and Denmark. In eastern Europe, things may evolve differently.

Even if sympathetic with, or loyal to Taiwan, Europe‘s ordinary citizens need to be careful when it comes to utterances like Rasmussen‘s. For decades, China has counted as a huge business opportunity, and western companies were only too happy to throw their technology at it. That was in the interest of investors, but not necessarily in the interest of the European workforce. Now, who exactly is expected to invest in the defense of democracy? There isn’t only a rift between countries – there’s one between income groups, too.

As Rasmussen said, in a globally interdependent world, failure to defend our values in east Asia and beyond will eventually lead to the erosion of those same values at home. But the defense of democracy still starts at home.

If the EU – or single countries of it – want to strengthen Europe’s global military role, I have some words of advice for their  leaders, too. Introduce a meaningful property tax to just that end – one that is going to tax you. Show that you are serious about defending democracy.

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Related

Rising aggression against Taiwan, Jan 28, 2017

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