Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Asian Spring? First Challenge to Dictatorship in China Since Tiananmen

Are we seeing the beginning of an Asian Spring, in China? Or the prelude to another bloodshed like Tiananmen when students wanting democracy were crushed by tanks and guns.

Tomorrow is "National Day" in China. This photo is me, when I happened to be there on national day during a legal negotiation in 1982. I have stayed connected to China's evolution ever since.
 Above: Michael Fjetland, Tiananmen Square, Beijing, China 1982
Above: Michael Fjetland, Hong Kong, 1982

Not since the Chinese Tiananmen Square incident in  Beijing in 1989 - when the government destroyed student protestors -- has China been confronted by protests on its streets.  A small gathering of students demanding FREEDOM and DEMOCRACY has grown dramatically.

This time the protests are in a unique area. It is not the northern capitol of Beijing, but in the southern province of Hong Kong, which was controlled for over a century by England. That all changed in 1997 when they cut a deal to return Hong Kong to China's control, based on promises by Beijing that Hong Kong would be "special" and allowed to elect its own leaders. Now they are changing the rules.

Hong Kong students have been joined by up to 300,000 citizens in their fight for the democracy.   In 2017 Hong Kong Chinese --unlike the 1 billion on the Mainland subject to one-party Communist rule - were to be allowed to vote for the chief executive of Hong Kong.

China wants to renege on the deal. They want to "select" the candidate the people could vote for. It's the same thing as one-party dictatorship, not democracy.

Stay tuned: Follow updates on Global American Values

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