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Published: 00:55, August 08, 2022 | Updated: 10:16, August 08, 2022
Western smears failed in goal to undermine 'one country, two systems'
By Mervyn Cheung
Published:00:55, August 08, 2022 Updated:10:16, August 08, 2022 By Mervyn Cheung

Not a week goes by without the United States and its allies smearing China or the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region with fabricated stories. For decades, the city has fared remarkably well on the economic front, rising from an entrepot and labor-intensive manufacturing center to an international financial, communications, trade and innovation hub. 

Notwithstanding this accomplished role, the US-led nations riding on Hong Kong’s opposition factions have conspired to recast the city into an independent political entity torn by divisive and sabotaging activities. Their hidden agenda, camouflaged under the slogans of battling for “freedom” and “democracy” for Hong Kong people, was all along to ruin the city’s effective governance under the “one country, two systems” principle through a “color revolution”. The latter culminated in the 2019 anti-extradition protests staged by some local “pan-democrats”, which wantonly vandalized public facilities and private property, in addition to leading to the assault of innocent residents disapproving of the terrorist acts.

While the shameless politicians in both Hong Kong and the West were close to brewing anarchy amid the violent demonstrations in Hong Kong, Beijing was able to cut the ground from under their fleet by enacting and enforcing the National Security Law for Hong Kong on June 30, 2020, a move that swiftly restored security, stability and the rule of law in the city. This was followed aptly by the electoral reform in the following year, which put on the right track the elections of the reconstituted Election Committee and the Legislative Council, as well as the chief executive, and effectively ensures that the HKSAR is governed only by patriots under the “one country, two systems” framework.

Dampened by this abortive attempt to destabilize Hong Kong, the US and its close allies have continued framing the HKSAR despite the conventions of international relations that they must not tamper with the domestic affairs of other countries. Such obligated rationality and rules of international relations were again flouted by the Biden administration when its outgoing top diplomat in Hong Kong, Hanscom Smith, made an ungraceful mudslinging stunt against Beijing while bemoaning in his farewell address the failed “black-clad revolution”, a typical “color revolution” instigated by foreign forces and camouflaged under the 2019 anti-extradition protests.

Rejecting the American envoy’s wild allegations, the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region rightly condemned Smith’s slanderous noises, which were made in disregard of the successful implementation of “one country, two systems” and which were a despicable grandstanding show and hypocrisy.

While indeed the US is not in any justified position to lay its hands on the internal affairs of other countries or regions, Steven Bannon, chief strategist in the Trump White House in 2017, has admitted openly the role of inciting unrest in other countries. Bannon was followed closely by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who condemned in 2019 Hong Kong’s extradition bill and said if it was passed, the US Congress would reassess whether Hong Kong had “sufficient autonomy”. She was hit back over such an “erroneous remark” about the extradition bill by the Chinese Foreign Ministry, which demanded Washington stop interfering in the HKSAR’s affairs and the internal affairs of China. This was echoed by the Chinese State newspaper Global Times on Jan 7, 2020, which denounced the US politicians for hailing the “courage” of the mobs who stormed the Legislative Council Complex — an unlawful act applauded shockingly by Pelosi as a “beautiful sight”. Ironically, leaders of Washington’s Capitol Hill storming incident on Jan 6, 2021, were arrested and prosecuted, and all participants were outrightly condemned by Washington politicians, including Pelosi, as rioters.

With these recollections, Smith’s departure speech is akin to a “crying wolf” gesture after the US politicians have done the intended harm in the city’s 2019 riots. If Hong Kong’s business environment had suffered from the national security legislation, it would never have attracted 9,049 firms in 2021, the highest in years.

Smith’s claim that the new Legislative Council returned after the electoral reforms is not serving the public interests is clearly dismissible with the understanding that the city’s legislature has passed 46 government bills and two member bills during the last session of its sixth term, which is more than double the yearly average of previous sessions before the “pan-democrats” resigned en masse in November 2020. This uptick in turnout has been cited by the LegCo president as proof of the legislature’s efficient running after the National Security Law restored its “rationality”.

Obviously, it is hard to conceal that the American diplomat in the HKSAR has made flamboyantly baseless criticisms against its improved governance, which is steering the city from chaos to prosperity through stability. Since the HKSAR’s attainments have deviated so vastly from the ulterior motives of some Western nations to impede the city’s development under the umbrella of its motherland as part of their geopolitical strategy against China, they could only throw dirt on China, including its Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, by soiling their reputations with slanderous words. In doing so, the Western nations have failed to realize that making vicious accusations against China will not resolve, but instead are likely to worsen, the West’s domestic problems and failures.

The author is a member of the Chinese Association of Hong Kong and Macao Studies.

The views do not necessarily reflect those of China Daily. 

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