The China Syndrome

Shortly after the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, Imperial Japan launched an invasion of S.E. Asia, including Hong Kong. Since it was a British colony, Canada and India joined British forces to defend it. It took Japan just 18 days to emerge victorious. During the four years of Japanese occupation, Hong Kong civilians were raped and tortured. After World War II, Britian instead of caring for the victims, was more concerned about its 99-year lease of the colony.

As the expiry of that lease approached, the Sino-British Joint Declaration was signed in December 1984. It stipulated that under CHINESE rule, Hong Kong would enjoy a high degree of autonomy and the social and economic systems would remain unchanged for 50 years. There would be “One Country-Two Systems.” In 1992, Chris Patten, the last Governor of Hong Kong, initiated a series of political reforms designed to give the people of Hong Kong (the majority of whom hold mulitple foreign passports) a greater voice in the government via democratic elections. Beijing condemned it as a betrayal of London’s promises and accused Britain of not consulting China over the proposed changes and began a series of strong measures aimed at re-establishing its influence.  China signaled its intentions to roll back Patten’s reforms and announced proposals to restrict political groups and public protests. On the morning of the hand-over, 6000 specially trained troops of the People’s Republic of China were deployed in Hong Kong to assert Chinaa’s SOVEREIGNTY. The Chinese president hailed the return of Hong Kong to the MOTHERLAND as a great historical event.

In the days to come, Queen Elizabeth’s portrait was removed from public offices. Coins no longer had the Queen’s head and postage stamps displayed the words “HONG KONG, CHINA.” The “Royal” title was dropped from various organizations. The crown was removed from the crest of the Hong Kong police force. British-inspired holidays like the Queen’s birthday and Remembrance Day were replaced by the Peoples Republic of China National Day. Royal mail boxes were replaced by the Green Hong Kong post boxes. The United Kingdom was represented by the British Consultate General. Hong Kong was no longer linked to the Commonwealth.

Patten did not seem to grasp the whole situation and told the whole world that China could not be relied upon to keep its word and could not be trusted as far as one could throw them.  China as a sovereign country has the right to its own self-determination. Yes, the agreement was that for the next 50 years Hong Kong would be “One Country-Two Systems” even though Hong Kong is not a country. But there were too many demands for democratic reforms, followed by protests by people, a good many of whom are not even citizens of Hong Kong or China and who could at any time return to Britain, Canada, the US and Australia where they own luxury homes, luxury cars and millions in their bank accounts.  One wonders if the British thought that those “little men with straw hats and sandals” would continue to do their master’s bidding.  The chances were that they would have — but COVID-19 intervened.

China did surpress information about the Coronavirus and delayed vital information from the outside world. Trump with his unmatched intelligence brushed off the the dangers and took no steps to combat the virus. Instead, he praised China and explained to the American people it was nothing but the flu and when the hot weather settled in, it would miraculously disappear. The six week delay in doing nothing was to prove fatal to thousands of Americans. Not to be outdone and to divert attention from his colossal failure to act immediately, he claimed without evidence that the virus escaped from the Wahun Institute of Virology. China claimed that was not possible because that particular strain of virus was not being studied there. Mike Pompeo, the Secretary of State said there is a “significant amount of evidence” to back that claim. When challenged to provide the evidence, he backed down. The two most powerful men in the world proved incompetent to that challenge. A German intelligence report cast doubts on Pompeo’s allegations. The Coronavirus did flare up in Wahun but there is no evidence it originated there. Colin Carlson, a professor at Georgetown University and an expert in zoontonic viruses stated the theory of the wet market as the starting point is no longer viable, backing up China’s claim. Experts around the world declared that the Virus was not modified in a lab. That did not stop Trump from branding it as the “China Virus” and Pompeo calling it the “Wahun Virus” Neither did it stop Michael Voris of “CHURCH MILITANT” an extreme right wing, holier-than-thou Traditional Catholic organization from branding it the “COMMIE VIRUS.” And so it came to pass that President Xi made it clear to the West that China will not be unjustly accused, will not be pushed around and will not be dictated to. Xi has all the power — something that Trump craves for. Trump cannot even override state governors.

Trump still bad mouths China, insisting on calling Covid-19 the “China” Virus and even mocks China by calling it the “Kung Flu” virus.  In a recent WHO meeting with 194 members in attendence, President Xi said that China supports the idea of a comprehensive review of the global pandemic, but that it should be based on science and professionalism and conducted in an objective and impartial manner and should look at how other governments responded to WHO’s warning. France, South Korea, South Africa and Germany threw their support with WHO. The E.U. and others staked out a middle ground. Australian Foreign Minister insisted on a motion that has won the support of other members that will pave the way for an impartial, independent and comprehensive investigation into the handling of the Covid-19  outbreak, especially from Trump who brushed it aside and said it would miraculously disappear.

In the meanwhile, it boggles the mind that Chris Patten would publicly tell the world that China just cannot be relied upon to keep its word and it cannot be trusted as far as one could throw them. That is like the pot calling the kettle black. Britain, along with the United States and Russia promised in what became known as the “Budapest Memorandrum”  to guarantee the security of Ukraine if they would surrender all the nuclear hardware that was scattered all over Ukraine to the Russians for disassembly. Well, Russia annexed Crimea and is also alleged to have shot down a commercial jetliner with 80 children aboard.  Nothing has been done about it. All the West could do was to back a pitiful and pathetic coup to support Ukraine – a corrupt and failed Fascist state.

Today, Britian headed by Boris Johnson will hold talks with China. We hope that Johnson will keep in mind that those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

About the Author
Originally from Mumbai, India. Studied, trained and worked in Mumbai, Munich, Germany and Toronto, Canada. For many years, Leslie owned and operated a printing company where he printed everything, except money! Currently retired. Married with four children (four too many.)
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