ON WHITE PAPERS, FACT SHEETS, AND COLOR REVOLUTIONS: THE BUILDING BLOCKS OF BEIJING’S OFFICIAL NARRATIVE ON HONG KONG’S NEW NATIONAL SECURITY REGIME

(Note: This article was originally posted by Hong Kong Free Press, on May 28, under the title “White Papers, fact sheets and color revolutions:  Beijing’s new narrative to justify Hong Kong’s national security regime)   These defiant fact-filled documents have been appearing in a steady sequence during the past year. All are targeting sensitive dimensions of Hong … Continue reading ON WHITE PAPERS, FACT SHEETS, AND COLOR REVOLUTIONS: THE BUILDING BLOCKS OF BEIJING’S OFFICIAL NARRATIVE ON HONG KONG’S NEW NATIONAL SECURITY REGIME

WINNING HEARTS AND MINDS: MISSION IMPOSSIBLE FOR A NEW LEADER WITH A NATIONAL SECURITY AGENDA?

(Note: This is an updated version of the article first published by Hong Kong Free Press on May 7, 2022, the day before Hong Kong’s Chief Executive election ceremony.)  Election campaigns and their enthusiasts everywhere are always full of extravagant promises and idealistic goals. Hong Kong is no exception -- even under its new national … Continue reading WINNING HEARTS AND MINDS: MISSION IMPOSSIBLE FOR A NEW LEADER WITH A NATIONAL SECURITY AGENDA?

SAME WORDS, NEW DEFINITIONS: UNIVERSAL SUFFRAGE, AUTONOMY, FREE SPEECH — AND NOW JUDICIAL INDEPENDENCE?

(Note: This article was first published by Hong Kong Free Press on April 16, 2022) Everyone knows about politicians who promise the moon and political hopefuls with policy agendas that never materialize. Such lapses can have much greater consequences if they come from government leaders who are speaking from one political tradition and their listeners … Continue reading SAME WORDS, NEW DEFINITIONS: UNIVERSAL SUFFRAGE, AUTONOMY, FREE SPEECH — AND NOW JUDICIAL INDEPENDENCE?

“TAIWAN IS NOT UKRAINE” — BUT THE PARALLELS ARE TOO GREAT AND BEIJING’S ATTEMPT TO EXPLAIN THE DIFFERENCE IGNORES THE MOST IMPORTANT QUESTIONS

(Note:  this article was originally posted by Hong Kong Free Press on March 26, 2022.  Blogposts dating back to 2009 are now available at https://suzannepepperhk.wordpress.com) On the face of it, China’s Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin have a lot in common. Both are aging all-powerful national leaders, both are survivors of the 20th century's … Continue reading “TAIWAN IS NOT UKRAINE” — BUT THE PARALLELS ARE TOO GREAT AND BEIJING’S ATTEMPT TO EXPLAIN THE DIFFERENCE IGNORES THE MOST IMPORTANT QUESTIONS

SELECTING A NEW CHIEF EXECUTIVE: Delayed and Disrupted, Hong Kong’s 2020-22 Election Cycle Finally Nears Its Conclusion

(Note: This article was first published by Hong Kong Free Press on March 5, 2022; updated Mar. 9 )  The cycle will end with the selection of Hong Kong’s Chief Executive, a post equivalent to the governor in colonial days but far less powerful. This final step was originally scheduled for March 27, but the … Continue reading SELECTING A NEW CHIEF EXECUTIVE: Delayed and Disrupted, Hong Kong’s 2020-22 Election Cycle Finally Nears Its Conclusion

ON THE DEMOCRACY MOVEMENT’S DEFEAT: Blame Enough for All to Share

(Note: This article was originally published by Hong Kong Free Press, on February 12, 2022, under the title “Beijing, Britain, pan-democrats or localists: Who is to blame for the death of Hong Kong’s democracy movement?”)  Beijing must surely be held responsible for the death sentence imposed on Hong Kong’s democracy movement in 2020. The new … Continue reading ON THE DEMOCRACY MOVEMENT’S DEFEAT: Blame Enough for All to Share

A BRAND NEW MODEL OF DEMOCRACY: Sales Pitch to a Skeptical Public

(Note: This article was first published by Hong Kong Free Press on January 22, 2022, under the title “Beijing’s hard sell of ‘Hong Kong-style capitalist democracy’) Beijing’s formal White Paper document only laid down the basic foundations and definitions for the central government’s overhaul of Hong Kong’s post-colonial political order. The White Paper was issued on December 20, a day after Hong Kong's first Legislative … Continue reading A BRAND NEW MODEL OF DEMOCRACY: Sales Pitch to a Skeptical Public

BEIJING’S WHITE PAPER ON HONG KONG DEMOCRACY — A PLEDGE RENEWED OR A POMISE BETRAYED?

(Note: This article was first posted by Hong Kong Free Press, on January 9, 2022)  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?

An Introduction to Mainland-Style Democracy: HONG KONG’S FIRST GENERAL ELECTION UNDER NATIONAL SECURIY RULES

(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 GENERAL ELECTION UNDER NATIONAL SECURIY RULES

ELECTION 2021: NOTES FROM A “PATRIOTS ONLY” CAMPAIGN TRAIL

(This article was originally posted by Hong Kong Free Press on Dec. 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