Saturday, July 1, 2017 at 7:52 AM

China: Where Hong Kong Is Concerned, Britain Is Now Adrift at Sea

Posted by Anthony L. Hall

Today is the 20th anniversary of “the Handover” (as the British say) or “the Return” (as the Chinese say) of sovereign authority over Hong Kong from Britain to China. And to mark the occasion, China is going out of its way to disabuse Britain of any notion that it retains any authority at all.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry has declared the Sino-British Joint Declaration, that laid the groundwork for Hong Kong’s handover, a ‘historical document that no longer has any realistic meaning,’ after Britain and the United States spoke of the binding effect of the 1984 treaty on China and the city. …

‘Now that Hong Kong has returned to the motherland for 20 years the Sino-British Joint Declaration, as a historical document, no longer has any realistic meaning,’ [ministry spokesman Lu Kang] was quoted by Xinhua as saying at a press conference.

‘It also does not have any binding power on how the Chinese central government administers Hong Kong. Britain has no sovereignty, no governing power and no supervising power over Hong Kong. I hope relevant parties will take note of this reality.’

(South China Morning Post, July 1, 2017)

In other words, China is daring Britain (and the United States) to interfere in its domestic affairs with Hong Kong. This, even as it takes democracy-trampling steps to make Hong Kong more like Beijing than London.

As remarkable as this might seem, I think China is right to assert its exclusive and unconditional sovereignty in this respect:

As one who lived under British colonialism, I appreciate why its colonial rule is preferable to China’s communist rule. But my national/racial pride is such that I have little sympathy for Chinese residents in Hong Kong who consented to be governed by British colonialists, but are refusing to be governed Chinese nationalists. Besides, the issue here is not between colonialism and communism; it’s between national unity and regional secession.

Frankly, solidarity with Hong Kongers who want independence from China is tantamount to solidarity with Texans or Californians who want independence from the United States. Therefore, one can hardly blame Chinese President Xi Jinping for acting pursuant to the same principle that compelled US President Abraham Lincoln to preserve the union … by any means necessary.

(“China Vows to Crush Hong Kong-Led Confederacy; and It Should,” The iPINIONS Journal, November 15, 2016)

Britain is now left with only a few “Overseas Territories,” which dot the globe with as much significance as fleas on the butt of an elephant. This is why it’s fair to say that the sun has finally set on the British Empire.

Good riddance, Britannia!

Related commentaries:
China crushes Hong Kong

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