Dispatches from Hong Kong

I don't know if today's protest march will ultimately be successful at getting Hong Kong's Chief Executive Carrie Lam to resign and the proposed extradition legislation shelved rather than delayed, but if it follows a troubling pattern the next protest will be violent and will stand a better chance of accomplishing those goals.   One thing is for sure: HKers have fight in them against any and all odds.  This protest wasn't just attended by students, but by a broad spectrum of the population.   


We just keep hoping you’re all safe, every time we see the headlines. 

I've been reading about the protests, and been simultaneously impressed and concerned.  Thank goodness they're in HK and not in the PRC proper, where such protests would get a little more extreme push-back.

Sorry if I missed it, but I really haven't seen a lot of support for the HK democracy demonstrators coming from those voices which had gushed over the "yellow vests" protesting Macron.

We're completely safe, being a good distance away from the govt complex and march route.

The Chief Executive just issued an apology in a press release, the main part (sounding rather impersonal and aloof) being:

"The chief executive clearly heard the views expressed in a peaceful and rational manner. She acknowledged this embodied the spirit of Hong Kong as a civilised, free, open and pluralistic society that values mutual respect, harmony and diversity. The government also respects and treasures these core values of Hong Kong. 
 "Having regard to the strong and different views in society, the government has suspended the legislative amendment exercise at the full Legislative Council with a view to restoring calmness in society as soon as possible and avoiding any injuries to any persons. The government reiterated there is no timetable for restarting the process. 
 "The chief executive admitted deficiencies in the government's work had led to substantial controversies and disputes in society, causing disappointment and grief among the people. The chief executive apologised to the people of Hong Kong for this and pledged to adopt a most sincere and humble attitude to accept criticisms and make improvements in serving the public

It appears this is not entirely satisfactory with the crowd, though.  One commentator called it a suicide note written in third-person. 

The SCMP has live updates illustrate this well:


I, too, have been following the HK news and wondering if you and your family were OK. 

Take care!

Stay safe. I love that city and remember being sad when HK was to be "returned" to China.  I'm looking for any news that I can find. Keep us posted.

The average citizen in mainland China knows nothing about this giant protest. They are completely isolated. There is no press except the government press.This is so terrible.

Being covered now on Fareed Zakaria CNN

CNN.com and NYTimes are good with the latest news. Remember it is now 1:35 a.m. in HK right now ,just the reverse of our time. I 

mtierney - Thanks for the aerial views. Somehow I missed them. What a gigantic number of people!

Hong Kong's legislative building is now entirely occupied.  Live streams:


The graffiti vandalism may be a big mistake. It can cause a turning point against the protest. Movements always have some who screw things up.

The police could have easily defended the building as they have many times before, so it was a trap to cast the splinter group of protesters (and so all of them) in a bad light.  At least the protesters marked many valuable items in LegCo as "fragile" and off-limits for destruction.

In comparison, we Americans are so complacent about the destruction of our democracy.  We need to be out on the streets too. Peacefully.  HK's turnout is about 20% of the population.  For us, the proportional turnout would be about 65 million.

shoshannah said:
In comparison, we Americans are so complacent about the destruction of our democracy.  We need to be out on the streets too. Peacefully.  HK's turnout is about 20% of the population.  For us, the proportional turnout would be about 65 million.

We're so very busy.

Big Brother, Love Island, America's Got Talent, Facebook, Twitter.

I’m scared to comment, because the entitled manchild fevered dreams of world-domination that reveal a person’s inner terror of being exposed as laughably inept at their dream job (‘life emperor’) - and therefore also exposed as a lifelong bedwetter and an early victim of expert bullying - have us into Police State insanity. 

It’s getting so bad that we joke about being afraid to walk down the street and chat normally, yet it’s assumed we’ll just go along quietly because ‘they’ know what’s best for the rest of us. Yeah, nah mate!

This creepy scenario is repeated too often around the globe. We have to resist both the complacency, and the unreality it sponsors. 

This week I met with a Green Card IT expert from (People's Republic) China and I was surprised when he said he thought the protests were a disgrace and an ebarrassment to him. He has lived here for 20 years. 

He probably shouldn't participate in them.  

truth said:
This week I met with a Green Card IT expert from (People's Republic) China and I was surprised when he said he thought the protests were a disgrace and an ebarrassment to him. He has lived here for 20 years. 

 Still prefers totalitarianism.  

Here's my theory: We in the USA are not taking to the streets in a massive way because we expect the rule of law to prevail.  We expect(ed) the Mueller report to be so damning that it would bring down the current OTWH (occupant of the White House).  We expect Congress to investigate, resulting in ouster of the OTWH. We expect the 2020 election will make the OTWH a one-termer. We expect our elections to be fair and secure.  All of this happens in a country where the law is more powerful than politicians. As we used to be. So we wait for the law to kick in.

In scrappier, less democratic countries, citizens don't expect the law to necessarily work.  They won't wait around for it.  So they take to the streets. We have to fully realize that we cannot expect the law to be applied.

So today the CCP's Liason Office in Hong Kong held a press conference and thanked the police and HK government and ignored any issues brought up by protesters.  As in the past this approach just makes protesters more determined and increases their numbers. Tomorrow all the MTR (mass transit rail) drivers will be striking in support of protesters and possibly the bus drivers.   Nice that we live within walking distance of the office, but will there be support staff and door people there to even open the doors?  

NY Times investigative video showing that HK police purposefully ignored Triad members bloodily attacking peaceful members of the public. Also, ignoring those who went to the police stations for help. 


dave, what's your thoughts on Chinese troops getting involved?

krugle said:
dave, what's your thoughts on Chinese troops getting involved?

 I don't see it happening any time soon, as that would send the message that the police can't handle things, which would be a blow to the morale of the police.  I'd expect to see more dangerous weapons / tactics deployed by the police first.


Last night police tear gased Mong Kok, hitting as many non-protesters as protesters in the world's most densely populated geographic area.  Wong Tai Sin, a working class area was also hit with overly-robust police activity, which brought aunties out with no protective gear to give the police a piece of their mind.  More protests scheduled for today and tomorrow throughout Hong Kong.  No one is happy with the situation these days but burglars in remote areas, who are happy with the distracted police.  And Junius Ho, a lawmaker and current Bond villain of Hong Kong, who likes making death threats on television with a weird smile.

mtierney, several of our universities maintain campuses in HK, although most of the students are online students. They’ve been as disrupted as most other  businesses and citizens throughout all this. The other major complication from the Australian perspective is the emerging scandal of corruption within the gambling industry, with particular emphasis on special deals for Chinese, Korean and other Asian major (or politically valuable) contacts. Read up on the Crown scandal. 

Very interestingly, it comes as no surprise that Murdoch is caught up in this mess, and our federal govt is trying to avoid answering questions. 

What is surprising is that some of our Ministers are worried that your newest trade sanctions will affect our relationship with China. 

I misunderstood one of the articles I’d read about the uni campus protests - it was about the protests echoing those in HK but here in Brisbane.


The Chinese Consul-General in Brisbane has recently been made an associate professor of languages at UQ. Naturally, this is creating all kinds of ripples...

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