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Hong Kong Affords a Glimpse of the Future for Taiwan

Reporting in The Diplomat, Katja Drinhausen, the head of the Politics and Society Program at the Mercator Institute for Chinese Studies, notes that the implementation of China’s Hong Kong National Security Law by the Legislative Council’s (Hong Kong’s Parliament) passage of the Safeguarding National Security Ordinance has imposed the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) ideology on Hong Kong’s citizens, resulting in “another blow to civil liberties in the city.” The vote for passage of what Drinhausen characterizes as the “draconian” ordinance in Hong Kong’s Legislative Council was 89 to zero.

“The belief that security can be obtained by throwing a small state to the wolves is a fatal delusion.”

The new ordinance, as explained in the Legislative Council Brief, adds to Hong Kong’s criminal code the offenses of “insurrection, treason, external interference … espionage” and a catchall offense called “incitement to disaffection.” The latter is reminiscent of broad Soviet criminal statutes that outlawed “anti-Soviet” agitation and conduct. Drinhausen notes that under the new ordinance — which was just passed on March 19th — mere contacts and exchanges of information with “external forces” can be deemed illegal. The term used by the ordinance is “colluding with external force.” In communist countries, the “law” is a facade for state and party rule. The last paragraph of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s third-volume of The Gulag Archipelago sums it up best: “For half a century and more the enormous state has towered over us, girded with hoops of steel. The hoops are still there. There is no law,”  (READ MORE from Francis P. Sempa: With Biden, the Lippmann Gap Returns)

The Hong Kong ordinance, known as Article 23 of the Basic Law, was justified in terms of “national security” by the newly “elected” Legislative Council, which is nothing more than an extension of the CCP. Hong Kong’s pro-Beijing Chief Executive John Lee said that the new law was a “glorious achievement” that shows that Hong Kong is “living up to the trust placed in us by the Central Authorities,” i.e., the CCP. Lee and the members of the Legislative Council have shown themselves to be nothing more than modern-day quislings in the service of the tyrannical CCP. Human Rights Watch condemned the Legislative council’s actions, saying that the new law “eliminates the last vestiges of fundamental freedoms” in Hong Kong.

The Hong Kong Democracy Council, based overseas, urged the Biden administration to “step up for political prisoners and freedom in Hong Kong.” Meanwhile, the Biden State Department expressed “concerns” that the new legislation will be used to “eliminate dissent through fear of arrest and detention” and “restrict the free speech of U.S. citizens and residents” and further “curtail[] the rights and freedoms of people in Hong Kong.” Beijing responded by calling on Washington to “respect China’s sovereignty, and immediately stop meddling in [China’s] internal affairs.”

Back in 1997, Britain threw Hong Kong to the wolves of the CCP, perhaps under the mistaken belief that Beijing was abandoning communism and evolving into a capitalist, if authoritarian, regime like that in Singapore. The West’s “engagement” of China, which was justified during the last two decades of the Cold War, should have ended with the collapse of the Soviet Union. But business interests here and in Europe, Japan and elsewhere, coupled with Western elites who welcomed China into the “rules-based international order,” had their way. There was a lot of money to be made in China. The quest for short-term profits at the expense of long-term security was evidence of what James Burnham once called the “suicidal mania of American business.”

In Taiwan, there were public demonstrations against the new Hong Kong law. Taiwan’s leaders and citizens recognize that what is happening in Hong Kong will be their future should China gain control of the island. In the United States, Taiwan is more than just a human rights concern. It is a strategic concern of the highest order. Taiwan is the geopolitical anchor in a series of island chains in the western Pacific that helps to contain the hegemonic ambitions of the CCP. It is today the object of increasing pressure from China’s People’s Liberation Army. (We Are Closer Than You Think to Civilizational Suicide: Lessons From Burnham)

Historical analogies are never exact, and the Munich analogy has been overused and abused by Western statesmen. But those who are willing to ignore the significance of the threat to Taiwan and to U.S. national security posed by the Chinese communist menace would do well to reflect on the words of Winston Churchill on September 21, 1938, after the Western powers surrendered the Sudetenland to Hitler to avoid war: “The belief that security can be obtained by throwing a small state to the wolves is a fatal delusion.”

The post Hong Kong Affords a Glimpse of the Future for Taiwan appeared first on The American Spectator | USA News and Politics.


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