Enjoy your historical nihilism while you can

An HKFP op-ed on how Beijing is rewriting Hong Kong’s recent history: 

Tea table gossip about bought-and-paid-for protesters has become the official narrative.

There was no pro-democracy movement supported by the majority of the population – just a foreign-backed anti-China plot. Local public opinion never existed.

The claim that Hong Kong protesters must have needed outside resources and know-how to – for example – arrange deliveries of bottled water to demonstrations goes back to the Umbrella Movement. But the theme of foreign forces (invariably the NED on a hilariously tiny budget) masterminding ‘citizen journalists’ to plot the overthrow of poor vulnerable oppressive regimes is indeed suddenly cropping up all over the place. Recent examples include China Daily. Another is here, where a ‘geopolitical analyst’ writes (at impressive length)…

…the protests were well-organized, well-funded, and clearly using a long list of specialized techniques associated with a shadowy sector known as “the revolution industry”. 

(Column brought to you by the shadowy sector known as the ‘CIA controls publics in authoritarian countries’ industry.)

Who do Beijing spin-doctors think they are going to fool with this narrative? Apart from the tankies, few overseas observers will be convinced (the revised history only makes that quest for ‘credible PR’ even harder). And the several million Hongkongers who attended massive peaceful protests in 2014-19 know the CIA didn’t pay or organize them, or issue them with special top-secret laser pointers. The answer can only be that they are kidding themselves.

But of course the new version of history serves as a pretext. It has been hard to miss a recent surge in official use of the phrase ‘geo-political’ – as in Hong Kong as a ‘site for geo-political conflict’. This week’s example, a deputy police commissioner angling for Internet controls. 

As the top guy himself tells us, John Lee will bring a ‘new atmosphere’ to Hong Kong.

On the subject of tankies, a US leftist publication denounces them and Muslim leaders for siding with Beijing over human rights violations in Xinjiang – while maintaining the anti-Western integrity…

…the Uighurs are wronged four times over: by China’s oppression, by American imperialist cooptation, by left-wing denialism, and by Muslim leaders’ dereliction.

It can be done!

Commerce Secretary Edward Yau, discerner of economic well-being and public opinion, says

Hong Kong will not compromise its anti-Covid measures for the sake of the economy, despite growing calls from the business sector to resume quarantine-free international travel.

…He said travelers will still have to quarantine for the time being to reduce the risk of community transmission, as people are worried there would be importation of cases if restrictions are relaxed.

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18 Responses to Enjoy your historical nihilism while you can

  1. donkey says:

    What is the difference between an imported infection and a “domestic” infection that is from the same virus and variant circulating around in an inoculated community who take their masks off at dinner, crowd into subways during rush hour, invite hordes of family members to the house for mahjong, and go shopping in small wet market stalls and smell perfume at parfumeries by lifting up their mask to get the full stench of it?

    Have you also noticed in your necks of the woods, I ask all of you, that shops suddenly are closing at 9pm or earlier? Is this just a response to economic hardship or has there been some directive that malls and stores should not stay open past ten?

  2. A Poor Man says:

    Who do Beijing spin-doctors think they are going to fool with this narrative?

    The 1.4 billion or so zombies north of the shenzhen river. They seem to have fooled them about many other things already, so why not try again?

  3. Joe Blow says:

    It seems that John “Charisma” Lee, CENO-Select, has trouble attracting candidates for his new government team, surprising as it may seem.


    John Lee is putting together his patriotic team. He offers Christine Loh the position of Assistant Under-Secretary of Office Supplies and Light Refreshments ($ 300,000+ per month).

    What will Christine do?

    A. “No! I will never accept a 3-4 million dollar Government appointment that comes with an official limo and driver and a plush office with plenty of privileges, because this Government offends my democratic principles and sensibilities. I will not be complicit in legitimizing this stinking authoritarian regime. Many of my former colleagues in LegCo, including some dear old friends, are now in custody under the draconian NSL. It tears at my heart strings, knowing that they are suffering agony every day and night because of their beliefs. I am a woman of principles and I will stand up for my convictions and my undying belief in Liberty. I will never humiliate myself in the service of the regime that spreads white terror in our hometown of Hong Kong. I asked my very good and most patriotic friend Paul Zimmerman if this was the right thing to do but he didn’t return my message. In the meantime I rest assured in the fact that my husband and daughter in sunny California both have American passports, should things ever get too hot under my little pitter-patter feet.

    B. “When, what?? How much $$ did you say?”
    *Overcome by excitement, Christine wets her pants*

  4. wmjp says:

    Another is here, where a ‘geopolitical analyst’ writes (at impressive length)
    Ah! Nury’s little website where much of the trash is written by Peter Fredenburg (though with Nury’s by-line) who has consumed copious quantities of CCP KoolAid.

  5. Stanley Lieber says:

    The evening streets in Central & Wanchai are devoid of traffic, even on Friday nights. They’ve killed the miracle.

  6. Low Profile says:

    Apparently I missed out on the CIA/NED handouts when joining the protests a few years ago. Where’s my cash?

  7. Chris Maden says:

    @Low Profile. Me, too.

  8. Toph says:

    Spinning banana-nut tales is a well established tool of authoritarian governments. The point is not to persuade people that this version of events is true, it is to send a clear message that people must behave as though this version of events were true. The true believers get state backing, everyone else can only make mumbled milquetoast objections before their lives get very difficult.

    So why do it in English to overseas audiences? To signal that any challenge will be met with an epic panda tantrum, which is painful enough to enough corporations that they wil learn not to say anything about Hong Kong at all. How did having opinions work out for the NBA? Smile, nod, take the money.

  9. Fuck the CCCP says:

    “To signal that any challenge will be met with an epic panda tantrum”

    I wish someone would shoot that fucking panda in the head so we could end these tantrums once and for all.

  10. HKJC Irregular says:

    And what of Phil Hynes and his masterpiece of fictitious pseudo-babble? Former British soldier (not known if squaddie or officer) , security consultant (ha, ha) and now at the University of Ulster (known as a humble Polytechnic in my day). Let’s see the foreign funds in the form of RMB head to Norn Iron, as if the province never had enough paid zealots.

  11. Mary Melville says:

    The core issue is that if protesters were being paid to turn out first in line would have been the blue elderlies who are at core as cynical as the rest of us and have milked the generous handouts from the pro gov parties. I have chatted to them on local streets and thumbed down the candidate on their banners and got in response a complicit smirk.
    Their bitch with the pan dem camp was the lack of ‘stimulus’ to participate in engagements.

  12. Formerly Known As... says:

    Joe Blow, that was excellent and had me chuckling.

    And here’s one of her recent writings:


    “One issue that can make things very much worse is provocative action relating to Taiwan.”

    So Christine, by that did you mean actions like threatening to attack and invade? Or perhaps continuous and aggressive violations of air-space? Or maybe allowing and encouraging your online trolls to make threats of violence against the democratically elected president of the renegade province?

    No, I didn’t think so.

  13. Mark Bradley says:

    It’s a shame Christine sold her soul. Her book Underground Front was very good.

  14. Chinese Netizen says:

    Phill Hynes comes across like the guy playing the “CCP Uber Alles” angle, be it cynically or with true blue zeal, for the main reason that in order to have a successful Gwailo run “risk assessment” or “corporate security” business, or being that go-to guy for rah rah “looks academic” stories in the world of “geopolitical analysis” in the HKCCPSAR post NSL, one needs to have one’s nose very firmly planted in the ass of the powers that be AND to let as many people as possible know this.

  15. Chris says:

    Given that the least fun party ever is generally known for signalling its current atrocities through its castigation of others for one or two much less egregious examples of the same…

    and since all this muck about foreign (generally read “American” or “American backed Taiwan”) forces fomenting the 2019 HK unrest is equally plausible to nebulous Chinese forces being behind race protests and gun shootings in America, I’m surprised the Americans haven’t borrowed a page and blamed China for all of its domestic problems as well.

    Or maybe they are starting to do so? Are the Americans dumb enough to buy it?

  16. Chinese Netizen says:

    Some Americans are *very* dumb enough to buy it, hook, line and sinker.

    Right now the biggest thing to blame China (rightly) for is fentanyl going to Mexico and then being re-packaged for the USA.

  17. Stanley Lieber says:

    @Chinese Netizen

    What about Covid-19? Is China blameless for that?

  18. Chinese Netizen says:

    @Stanley Lieber: China certainly isn’t blameless for the WuFlu but the Murikans certainly didn’t help their own cause (through sheer stupidity, conspiracy theory consumption and making it a political issue) did they??

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