In recent months, extreme leftists in Beijing have been laying relentless siege to Hong Kong on the orders of President Xi Jinping to make our city fall into line.
After they successfully blocked Professor Johannes Chan Man-mun’s appointment as a pro vice chancellor of the University of Hong Kong, they are now working aggressively to take out Benny Tai Yiu-ting, a law academic with the HKU who first proposed the idea of Occupy Central.
In the meantime, several communist mouthpieces mounted an all-out onslaught against Li Ka-shing, the richest man in Hong Kong, by accusing him of abandoning his country amid the economic downturn in the mainland.
It is very likely that our judiciary will be their next target, and soon Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying could be using his “superior status” to interfere in the nomination procedure of our judges, to get his claws into Hong Kong’s judicial branch, the final stronghold of our freedom.
The concept of “one country, two systems” was proposed by the late paramount leader Deng Xiaoping as a politically expedient solution to the Hong Kong question.
Even though the idea itself was far from perfect, at least it provided some reassurance for the people of Hong Kong and guaranteed a smooth transfer of sovereignty in 1997.
However, when Xi, dubbed the “chairman Mao of the 21st century”, took power in 2012, he was so desperate to establish his own authority that he began to depart radically from the long-standing policies on Hong Kong laid down by his predecessors and, instead, adopt an extreme leftist stance.
All he intended to do was to set the tone for the new era under his reign.
One in fact shouldn’t be surprised by that, because Xi has long been a communist fundamentalist deep down in his heart.
However, Xi’s deviation from Deng’s principle of “one country, two systems” and his extreme leftist rhetoric have provoked a backlash, not only among the mainland public but also from prominent party stalwarts such as Cai Xia, a famous professor at the Party School of the Communist Party’s Central Committee, who recently published an article that contained an implicit criticism of Xi’s violation of Deng’s instructions.
Professor Cai even implied that what Xi is doing is repeating Mao’s mistakes.
Although most of the criticisms against Xi have remained low-key and subtle so far, Cai’s comments at least indicate that not every high-ranking member in the party agrees with Xi’s leftist approach.
Not only has Xi adopted a leftist stance in politics, but he is applying his radical beliefs to his economic policies.
On the surface, he has vowed to facilitate the development of a free market economy in China.
However, the system that governs China under his rule is in fact neither a socialist planned economy nor market-oriented capitalism but rather a malformed hybrid of both, with absolute power over the economy firmly in the hands of top party officials.
As the whole of China is shrouded in heavy leftist smog and the core values of Hong Kong are under serious threat, it seems we have no choice but to rise up and defend our freedom and rule of law, even if it costs us our lives.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Oct 9.
Translation by Alan Lee
[Chinese version 中文版]
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