The demonstrations in Hong Kong, now an open confrontation with the People’s Republic of China, have a global impact. What are the forces behind this movement? What provides the funds and who stands to benefit?
The increasingly violent demonstrations in Hong Kong are completely embraced and enthusiastically supported in the U.S. corporate media and all the imperialist political parties in the U.S. and Britain. This should be a danger sign to everyone fighting for change and for social progress. U.S. imperialism is never disinterested or neutral.
The disruptive actions involve helmeted and masked protesters using gasoline bombs, flaming bricks, arson and steel bars, random attacks on buses, and airport and mass transit shutdowns. Among the most provocative acts was an organized break-in at the Hong Kong legislature where “activists” vandalized the building and hung the British Union Jack flag.
U.S., British and Hong Kong’s colonial flags are prominent in these confrontations, along with defaced flags and other symbols of People’s China.
The New York Times described the airport shutdown:
“The protests at the airport have been deeply tactical, as the largely leaderless movement strikes at a vital economic artery. Hong Kong International Airport, which opened in 1998, the year after China reclaimed the territory from Britain, serves as a gateway to the rest of Asia. Sleek and well run, the airport accommodates nearly 75 million passengers a year and handles more than 5.1 million metric tons of cargo.” (Aug. 14)
U.S. media have consistently labeled these violent actions “pro-democracy.” But are they?
Even if the leaders of these reactionary actions decide to pull back from the brink and recalibrate their tactics, based on the Chinese government’s strong warnings, it is important to understand a movement that has such strong U.S. support.
China has a right to intervene
It must be strongly stated that China is not invading Hong Kong if it moves against these violent disruptions. Hong Kong is part of China. This is an internal matter, and the call for independence for Hong Kong is an open attack on China’s national sovereignty.
Under Hong Kong’s Basic Law, the constitution for the city, the government is legally allowed to request help from the Chinese People’s Liberation Army.