Saturday, August 8, 2020 11:18:50 AM
Martin Sieff :
With the predictable remorselessness of a bad Hollywood movie script, the Washington Establishment's "Game Plan" to destroy the prosperity of Hong Kong and attempt to use it to pry open and wreck the stability and prosperity of China itself continues to grind along, though its tired cliches and lies are becoming increasingly obvious to the entire world.
First, although the mass protests and riots continue in Hong Kong and are even escalating in intensity and violence, they are losing their mass base. The one credible complaint that the protesters claimed to have - the introduction of a new extradition bill - has been withdrawn.
This of course did not end the protests but only exacerbated them. Demands of the protesters have become ever more amorphous and sweeping and ever more extreme. But the extremely patient resolution of the police and security forces continues to maintain law and order and it is vividly clear that at least 90 percent of the population of Hong Kong and probably far more have no sympathy or patience for the protesters but are heartily sick of them.
What is also clear is that the protests and the orchestrated political and economic support for them from the Western governments, most especially the United States and the United Kingdom, have been following exactly the same pattern as the drumbeat of support for the once-named "colour revolutions" across Eurasia: They are all pretexts to topple stable governments and instead set up sycophantic US puppet regimes dedicated to scrapping social security safety nets and impoverishing entire populations all around the world.
Most recently, having been successfully applied to seize control of the largest democratic nation in the Western Hemisphere, the same formula was used to topple President Edo Morales, a successful leader the indigenous people of Bolivia have ever known after he too won four consecutive free and fair elections over the past 14 years.
Therefore the holding of local elections on Sunday in Hong Kong is not a triumph for Washington and London: It is a shattering and humiliating defeat for them.
Using the usual inverse logic of Washington and London, the genuine elections in Hong Kong will be slandered, sneered at and discredited. The reasons Hong Kong was targeted for destabilisation and destruction in civil war in the name of democracy and human rights are very clear: First, having been a British "colony" for more than 150 years until 1997, it is still deeply woven with British and US influence from major economic structures to intelligence networks that can be easily turned to the business of fanning the flames of riots and revolutions.
This background is no secret but has been endlessly celebrated in US and British popular novels and movies including most strikingly John Le Carre's "The Honourable Schoolboy" in which the secret oath to penetrate China for the British and US secret services ran through Hong Kong thanks to the novel's hero, spymaster George Smitley. And Smiley was no myth, Le Carre modelled him on the very real MI6 or Secret Intelligence Service Chief Sir Maurice Oldfield.
On Nov 20, the US Congress, in its usual witless kneejerk reactions to the electric shock stimuli routinely used to galvanize members, unanimously passed two measures targeting the territory and economy of Hong Kong for economic sanctions.
This action alone should serve as a wake-up call to the remaining deluded radical demonstrators in the streets of Hong Kong as what they really mean to the Masters of the West. They are puppets, drones, cannon fodder, useful idiots to be raised up and then discarded and thrown on the garbage heap at the most convenient opportunity.
But for now they are still a valuable resource. They serve as an excuse first to target the stability and prosperity of Hong Kong, whose continued success and growth under Chinese rule has been a humiliation and source of rage to policymakers and ideologues in London and Washington for 22 years.
The pundits of the West have endlessly warned of and predicted sinister crackdowns, economic depression, stagnation and a New Dark Age for the people of Hong Kong.
Exactly the opposite has happened. Until the current protests erupted in June this year, the prospects for the Special Administrative Region had never been brighter. Several years ago, chief executive Carrie Lam started a far-seeing program to integrate Hong Kong into the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Unprecedented visions of prosperity and growth in a peaceful, global framework beckoned - and they still do.
But such a future is anathema to the New Cold (and increasingly Hot) warriors of the West. They are also alarmed that volatile US President Donald Trump might prove serious about peacefully resolving the trade conflicts he had previously provoked with China. Above all else, that must not be allowed to happen.
Therefore, first the riots had to be provoked in June, then a global climate of condemnation against China and the Administration of Hong Kong had to be manufactured. And when both those failed to topple the government of Hong Kong, then that old standby - US economic sanctions - had to be brought into play.
In terms of damage to China's overall economy, the effect of the so-called sanctions will be peripheral. The United States needs China's industrial output vastly more than China needs US raw materials.
No, the real victims of the love and compassion of the US Congress will be the people of Hong Kong.
Inevitably, foreign direct investment and major business hub organizations that have flourished there will quietly relocate to Shanghai, or elsewhere in China. The dangers of this happening will be greatly reduced when the street protests end. But if they continue, and especially if their orchestrators succeed in compensating for loss of popular support by manipulating outbreaks of terrorism and other violence, then Hong Kong will inevitably lose its East Asian primacy and leadership in business and entrepreneurial resources that it has boasted of for so long.
Hong Kong's true friends are the leaders who responsibly and with restraint run and protect its affairs both locally and in Beijing.
Hong Kong's enemies are the armchair heroes of the US Congress - eager as always to inflict misery and suffering halfway round the world so long as they can look in a mirror and boast how brave and wise they are. For the people of Hong Kong, the choice of whom to follow and whom to reject should be very clear.
(Martin Sieff, Senior Fellow, American University in Moscow, writes for China Daily)
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