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Opinion by Yu Ting: How far is Hong Kong from Beijing Massacre?

What Xi Jinping should recognize is that 2019 is definitely not like it was in 1989. Hong Kong in 2019 is an internationally recognized financial and trade center and it is very different from the political fortress of Beijing in 1989. If Beijing dares to let the people of Hong Kong bleed on a large scale, Xi Jinping’s regime would be taking a self-inflicted wound by his own sickle and ax.

A few years ago, I read a story about the “flea effect”. The flea is a high jump champion in the biological world. They can jump more than one meter high, which is huge relative to the proportion of their own body. A biologist put a glass cover at a height of exactly one meter above the flees, and they jump and jump and bump into the cover again and again. After a while, the biologist found that the flea could no longer jump more than a meter even without the cover until the end of its life. If you do the experiment with the fleas with a glass cover of a lower height, they automatically adjust the height of their jump, which is always just below the height set by the cover, and that no longer changes.

This famous biological experiment reminds me of the control and manipulation of China’s authoritarian regime. The CCP has been applying the principle of “stability overwhelming everything” since the Deng Xiaoping’s era. Xi Jinping has carried out his governance of the party, the administration, the military, and the civilian society, with the slogan of “Defending the Party’s Central Committee and Supporting the core of the Xi”. It is like reducing the height of the glass cover that Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin, and Hu Jintao, imposed on Chinese society to a much lower height.

The 30th Anniversary of June 4th Beijing Massacre and Hong Kong’s Anti Extradition Law Amendment Bill (ELAB) Protests

Would this control strategy be effective in Hong Kong? In the eyes of the CCP authorities, this is an irreplaceable secret of ruling the people. This year is the 30th anniversary of the Beijing Massacre in June 4th. It is the gray rhinoceros (the obvious danger) that Xi Jinping must strictly guard against, but in China, with a population of 1.4 billion, Xi has survived safely on that day. What Xi Jinping did not expect was that from Hong Kong flew out a black swan (an extremely rare event with severe consequences). For 30 consecutive years, Hong Kong people have expressed their support for the Democratic Movement of 1989 and protested the June 4th massacre. This year, after holding a grand commemorative rally and march protest, they began to hold a national anti-ELAB campaign to safeguard Hong Kong’s judicial independence.

The root cause of the outbreak in the anti-ELAB protest in Hong Kong is that the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is trying to apply the “flea effect” manipulation in an attempt to tighten the control of the Hong Kong people and replace the original “one country, two systems” with a new glass cover of “One country, and one country only”.

Since early June, Hong Kong has held protests on the scale of millions on the streets. But in a naive response on July 19, the Hong Kong police said that a large number of explosives were found in Tsuen Wan, together with flags and leaflets of the anti-ELAB and the T-shirts bearing the “Hong Kong National Front” logo. The involved local organization has publicly denounced that this is a fabricated planting! The police authorities created a smearing story of a “congressional arson” but failed.

The Yuen Long attack on the people introduced the mainland stability mechanism

On July 21, more than 400,000 people marched in Hong Kong. Some people surrounded the Central Government’s Hong Kong Liaison Office and smeared the national emblem with ink. Hundreds of anti-riot police used tear gas and rubber bullets trying to dispel the demonstrators. After 10:30 in the evening, an organized 100 white-clothed rioters carried out bloody incidents, in the Yuen Long subway station,  using weapons like rattan, wooden sticks, and water pipes, and madly attacked ordinary citizens, including participants in the anti-ELAB movement, resulting in more than 45 people badly wounded. Pregnant women, Democratic legislators, journalists, and citizens are knocked down to the ground. In the early morning of July 22nd, the Hong Kong government issued a press release saying that there were radical protesters rushing to the police in the area around Sheung Wan. And in contrast, the violent incident at Yuen Long MTR station was only “some people” and “conflict.” This statement deliberately distorted the truth.

However, within less than 24 hours, the Hong Kong and foreign media released a large number of videos and photos to expose pro-Communist LegCo member Junius Ho Kwan-yiu and the commander of the Yuen Long Pat Heung District Police Li Hongman and the triad to jointly plan and direct the Yuen Long bloody attack. “Police-and-gangsters” is a proved effective strategy and a frequently used toolkit for Beijing to suppress people, including veterans, demolition protesters, environmental activists, land disputers, and vaccine victims. The Yuen Long bloody attack was introducing this exact strategy of “police-and-gangsters” to Hong Kong, which would push the people’s resentment to a new crater.

On the afternoon of July 22nd, Carrie Lam the city’s Chief Executive led the government directors and the head of the police department Lu Wai-Chong to meet with the media. In the face of reporters’ questioning, Lam resisted answering the truth almost to her last word. This is below the minimum moral standards of any civil servant.

What needs to be analyzed is that Beijing’s commentary on the high pressure of public opinion, Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Global Times, is more straightforward than the People’s Daily and Xinhua News Agency. It directly mentions Beijing’s use of Deng Xiaoping’s June 4th Beijing Massacre to indicate the CCP’s three bottom lines that Hong Kong has pushed over. First, Hong Kong looks like it is pursuing a major cleansing of the patriotic forces and “falling back” to the United States. Second, if Hong Kong has a humanitarian disaster due to serious political turmoil, such as the large-scale vendettas of different factions, the city is completely in anarchy. Third, extremists engage in armed riots, control Hong Kong’s central institutions, or establish an anti-government political power.

On the 22nd, the late Chinese premier Li Peng, the butcher of June 4th, died. The commemoration of the Central Committee exceeded the language of Deng Xiaoping’s obituary. He praised Li Peng’s “performance” in the Beijing Massacre. Xi Jinping is using this public statement to reiterate the repression of the 1989 movement. He is effectively threatening to use the same military crackdown on Hong Kong protests again.

The Hong Kong police have issued an objection banning the Yuen Long protest scheduled on July 27th. It looks like Beijing’s oppression on Hong Kong has been upgraded. Nevertheless, what Xi Jinping should recognize is that it is now in 2019, which is unlike 1989. Hong Kong as an international financial and trade center is different from the political fortress of Beijing. If you dare to let the people of Hong Kong bleed on a large scale, Xi Jinping’s regime would be taking a self-inflicted wound by his own sickle and ax, the icon of his communist party.

(Translated from Yu Ting’s article in Chinese)

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Berliner Bericht | 2020