Gongol.com Archives: April 2024

Brian Gongol

April 27, 2024

Threats and Hazards Long memories

China's efforts to demolish the structure of individual rights in Hong Kong is a naked display of power being used to stifle dissent. But it may not just be a reaction to contemporary conditions on the ground: It turns out that nearly a century ago, the Communist partisans trying to subvert the existing republic in China used Hong Kong as a key point for getting resources to their forces inside the mainland. ■ The strategic choice to try to muzzle Hong Kong entirely seems from the outside like a colossal waste. As a special territory whose embrace of a liberal regime of laws had made it exceptionally wealthy by comparison with the rest of the country (and the world), it seemed like Hong Kong was a jewel worthy of preservation. ■ But perhaps those intergenerational memories were enough to convince China's regime that they didn't want anyone trying to get away with the things their predecessors had already done as revolutionaries themselves. That wouldn't reveal strategic foresight so much as an age-old instinct to pull up the ladder behind yourself. Regrettably, 7 million people are forced to live with the consequences.