As Beijing’s authorized barbarian-handlers in Hong Kong, the Foreign Ministry’s local office has the task of slapping the Foreign Correspondents Club on the wrist if necessary. They have just done so in response to the FCC’s protests about the new HK Police We-pick-our-own-journalists policy. Using a distinctly ‘wolf-warrior’ tone, the office accuses the press club of endorsing rioters and ‘provoking trouble’ and demands it stop ‘meddling in Hong Kong affairs’.
A reminder that Beijing’s officials not only see restricting reporters as a key measure, but openly regard the HK Police as part of their jurisdiction and entitled to their protection. The Foreign Ministry wouldn’t take much interest if the FCC criticized, say, the health authorities’ social-distancing measures.
The FCC’s role in lobbying for press freedom locally puts it very much on Beijing’s list of evil foreign forces. At the very least, it will need to look for a new club house next time its lease on the government-owned Ice House comes up (and good luck finding a landlord willing to rent to a group considered hostile to the glorious motherland).
On a brighter note, a solicitors’ disciplinary body in London is going to give Junius Ho a good seeing-to.
A few interesting links you might have missed…
By Timothy Mclaughlin in Wired, an in-depth look at Beijing’s mission to eradicate any representative politics from Hong Kong and the subsequent ‘democratic stagnation’. Special focus on the younger generation of would-be candidates, the pan-dems’ primary election in July and Martin Lee.
An LA cable channel interviews Samuel Chu. (Did the Beijing officials who ordered Hong Kong to put him on the NatSec Law wanted list realise he is a US citizen? If so, why not seek Nancy Pelosi, Ted Cruz and others he colluded with? Of course, they’re not ethnic Chinese – so not the Emperor’s property.)
There is zero hope for democracy in Hong Kong so long as the CCP is in power. Some desperate/gullible/naive moderates pushing a third/middle way like to think otherwise, but they come back to swallowing Beijing’s rigged ‘universal suffrage’ – a pointless exercise. HKFP generously devotes a whole article to them. (‘Third-way’ is basically ‘pro-Beijing-lite’ in that its proponents have financial, social-standing or other personal interests at stake that prevent them from overtly conflicting with the regime.) Also, a piece in response to Henry Litton’s historically illiterate SCMP piece advising Hong Kong judges to serve the CCP.