Choreographed Pelosi-trip mouth-frothing in summary

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive John Lee holds

…a meeting with his top ministers to condemn US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taipei, and pledge his administration’s full support for all necessary measures by the Central Government to safeguard national sovereignty.

He also blasts Pelosi for ‘maliciously criticizing Hong Kong’s democracy and freedom’.

The Hong Kong government issues six statements (here) under the names of various officials and bodies. For example

[Financial Secretary Paul] Chan said Taiwan is an inalienable part of China’s sacred territory. The country’s stand on the Taiwan issue has long been very clear … China’s internal affairs … interference by outside forces … grossly prejudiced China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity … one-China principle and the three Sino-US Joint Communiques [etc].

Other departments posted similar stuff on Facebook.

RTHK reports that all the pro-Beijing/establishment political parties declare their condemnation of the trip and quotes ex-Chief Executive CY Leung as saying…

“Pelosi’s Taipei visit is not in service of human rights, democracy, or freedom of the people of Taiwan. It is for American interests.”

(Maybe he could check with people in Taiwan to see how they feel about it.)

Regina Ip joins in with stock cliches…

The US is playing with fire if it aims to play the Taiwan card to thwart China’s unification and suppress China’s rise.

One factor that once made Hong Kong comfortable for international companies was the political neutrality of the government under ‘One Country, Two Systems’. Foreign-owned businesses on the Mainland might fear repercussions when Beijing went off on anti-American or anti-Japanese rants. But in Hong Kong, firms could be confident that the local officials (typically overseas-educated and holding Western passports) would be apart from that sort of nationalism. The hob-nobbing will never be quite the same.

In theory, China is angry because Pelosi crossed its ‘red line’. It’s obviously humiliating that she ignored vitriolic warnings not to visit Taiwan. But the real pain must lie in the boost to Taiwan’s international image and identity and the contrast with Beijing’s contrived and undignified outrage. Taiwan does not quite enjoy the ‘soft-power’ cool of Japan or South Korea, or the victim-sympathy of Ukraine, but Beijing is doing all it can to help it get there.

Beijing’s rhetoric is also frustrating many Chinese people…

Chinese propaganda emphasizes how supposedly quick, easy, and unstoppable a Chinese attack on Taiwan would be. That’s highly unlikely to be the case in reality, but it seems to be believed by most Chinese—creating a credibility gap when war keeps failing to come.

The Foreign Policy piece goes on to explain the impact on Taiwan’s public as well…

The attempt to coerce Taiwan’s public into submission has largely backfired; support for independence is at record highs, and Taiwanese self-identification as “Chinese” is at record lows, driven mostly by Beijing’s behavior. 

How different things would be if Beijing could calm down. Few would have cared about Pelosi’s trip if China had simply remained silent. 

The Hong Kong government is about to make a similar mistake in freaking out about plans for a Hong Kong parliament in exile. If the local authorities treat the concept with this degree of seriousness, so will everyone else.

Now – let’s say something nice about the Hong Kong government: the new fruit stamps are delicious…

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9 Responses to Choreographed Pelosi-trip mouth-frothing in summary

  1. Vag on the rag says:

    I would have expected Paul Tse on a fruit stamp.

  2. Chinese Netizen says:

    What’s truly pathetic about the stock clichés is that each muppet thinks he/she has to outdo the next in performative indignation to score a pat on the head or treat from the goons that actually run the show.

  3. wmjp says:

    On the parliament in exile:
    The Security Bureau today severely condemned … for forming a so-called Hong Kong Parliament overseas, suspected of contravening the offence of subversion under Article 22 of the National Security Law.

    How does one contravene an offence? Surely that means they didn’t do it since “contravene” essentially means “go against”?

  4. Mary Melville says:

    Power has gone to the head of CE.
    Under the Basic Law, the CPG is responsible for foreign affairs. The local administration was mandated to “enhance governance, strengthen the SAR’s development momentum, take solid steps to improve people’s livelihoods, and uphold the city’s harmony and stability.”
    But instead of cracking on to achieve the objectives, the officials who should be spending their time at the office on solutions are being constantly summonsed to attend meetings and engage in activities on issues outside the scope of their remit.
    What impact did the Pelosi visit have on the development of public housing, improving transport links, building elderly care homes?
    The governors of other provinces know their place, perhaps Beijing should remind our novices to leave foreign relations to the experts at CPG.

  5. Kwun Tong Bypass says:

    Dictatorships usually get completely off the rails when the underlings start to outdo each other trying to please The People’s Führer – ehhh Leader.

    I am looking forward to the nominations of candidates standing for the election of a new President on the 20th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party in November.

    So exciting!

  6. Joe Blow says:

    All dictators look great until the last five minutes.

  7. A Poor Man says:

    Spot on Mary, except that Popo Lee and his crew are in charge of a city, not a province.

  8. Mark Bradley says:

    “Spot on Mary, except that Popo Lee and his crew are in charge of a city, not a province.”

    Technically it is a provincial level city though, and it has trappings of a city-state (issues its own currency, issues its own passports, “independent” customs territory), though some of these trappings, like the firewall between Chinese and HK legal systems, have been breached.

    I get it though, these muppets need to stop barking

  9. Chinese Netizen says:

    “Spot on Mary, except that Popo Lee and his crew are in charge of a city, not a province.”

    Hey if HK plays its cards right, it might be the next Shenzhen!

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