(Note: This article was first posted by Hong Kong Free Press, on January 9, 2021) The day after Hong Kong’s re-vamped Legislative Council election was held on December 19, the central government in Beijing issued a major statement explaining the changes that had been imposed. Titled “Hong Kong: Democratic Progress Under the Framework of One-Country two Systems,” it was only the second such formal document, or White Paper, to be issued on the subject of Hong Kong’s political development since its 1997 … Continue reading BEIJING’S WHITE PAPER ON HONG KONG DEMOCRACY — A PLEDGE RENEWED OR A POMISE BETRAYED?
(Note: This article was first published by Hong Kong Free Press on December 27, 2021) Congratulations to the production managers in Beijing and the campaign managers here. Together they have designed and orchestrated a new-style election system for Hong Kong that has succeeded in producing exactly the results they intended. Unlike the old legislature, this new one can safely contribute to the “administration” of Hong Kong without disrupting its “executive-led” local government or … Continue reading An Introduction to Mainland-Style Democracy: HONG KONG’S FIRST ELECTION UNDER NATIONAL SECURIY RULES
(This article was originally posted by Hong Kong Free Press on Nov. 11, 2021, under the title “A few dissenting voices join the campaign trail for Hong Kong’s security-law era ‘patriots only’ election”) With election arrangements now totally revamped -- and an entire generation of pro-democracy partisans removed from competitive politicking -- Hong Kong's current Legislative Council election campaign is like no other since universal suffrage was finally allowed here … Continue reading ELECTION 2021: NOTES FROM A “PATRIOTS ONLY” CAMPAIGN TRAIL
(Note: This article was originally posted by Hong Kong Free Press, on Nov. 21, 2021, under the title “Hong Kong centrists test the waters as Beijing tries to avoid the appearance of a stage-managed election” The demolition of Hong Kong’s democracy movement during the past year, along with the old way of electing local legislators, is by now a well-known story. Inevitably, the causes of this demolition have become the subject of contending narratives -- between the central government in Beijing responsible for the demolition … Continue reading TESTING THE WATERS: New-Style “Centrist” Candidates for a New-Style “Safe” Election
(Note: This article was originally published by the Hong Kong Free Press on Nov. 7, 2021, under the title "How Hong Kong's finance chief joined the chorus on painting the 2019 uprising as a US plot") Since Beijing officials have described Hong Kong as first and foremost an “economic city,” it follows that the local official responsible for such matters should present … Continue reading FURTHER ON THE DAMAGE DONE BY “BLACK-CLAD VIOLENCE” AND ITS AMERICAN DEFENDERS: The Financial Secretary’s Report
(Note: This article was originally posted by Hong Kong Free Press on October 24, 2021) The timing was curious, and so was the document itself. A few weeks ago, on September 24, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a lengthy report with an unusual title: “Fact Sheet: U.S. Interference in Hong Kong Affairs and Support … Continue reading THAT FACT SHEET ON US INTERFERENCE IN HONG ONG AFFAIRS — Why Now?
Suzanne Pepper (Note: This article was first posted by Hong Kong Free Press on October 10, 2021) After the imposition of a new National Security Law on June 30, 2020, Beijing’s election reform mandate issued earlier this year marked the next major change in Hong Kong’s way of political life. Before the new law and the mandate, Hong Kongers had been carrying on along the course laid down when the British … Continue reading PATRIOTS AT THE HELM: Hong Kong’s New Election Committee Assembles to Begin Its Work
(Note: This is an updated version of the article posted by Hong Kong Free Press on Saturday, September 18, 2021, under the title “Barely a democrat in sight as Hong Kong ushers in new political era on Sunday.” It was written for pre-Election Day posting, that day being Sunday, Sept. 19. The figures for candidates and … Continue reading A NEW ELECTION SYSTEM FOR A NEW HONG KONG
(Note: This article was first posted by Hong Kong Free Press on September 3, 2021) Hong Kong’s new national security regime is efficient if nothing else. Everyone breathed a sigh of relief last year when they saw the new National Security Law’s article 39. It says the law is not retroactive, meaning political sins committed before June 30, 2020, when the law was promulgated, would not be treated … Continue reading THE AVALANCHE ROLLS ON: First the Candidates, Then the Election, and then the Democracy Movement Itself
(Note: This article was first published by Hong Kong Free Press under the title “The Tong Ying-kit case: First show trail of Hong Kong’s new mainland-style legal regime,” on Aug. 15, 2021) Legal professionals were quick to comment on the first trial to be held under Hong Kong's new National Security Law. But the law and the trial were not meant only for lawyers and judges and those trained in … Continue reading THE TONG YING-KIT TRIAL: A CASE OF EXEMPLARY PUNISHMENT