Hong Kong

Hong Kong Cops Beat and Blind Protesters As PRC Sends Trucks and Tanks to the Border

Nine people were injured during the weekend's protests in Hong Kong, including one woman who might be permanently blind after a violent encounter with the police.


Demonstrations in Hong Kong escalated over the weekend when at least nine protesters were injured by police. One woman will likely be permanently blind after a police officer shot her in the eye with a non-lethal bean bag round.

Bean bag rounds are supposed to immobilize and cause muscle spasms, not death or serious injury. When using these rounds, police are supposed to target extremities, not necks or faces. It's not clear whether the injured woman was a protester or a medic. Her image is now being used as a symbol of resistance.

The conflict between Hong Kong protesters, their own government, and mainland China—now in its 10th week—started when Hong Kong legislators began considering an extradition treaty that would allow the Hong Kong government to extradite those accused of crimes to Taiwan and the People's Republic of China (PRC). Many Hongkongers, who enjoy basic democratic norms and a far better-functioning criminal justice system, object to the criminal justice practices of the PRC in mainland China. Since the '90s, Hong Kong has operated as a special economic zone. It is technically a part of the PRC, but is statutorily semi-autonomous and has a semi-democratically elected legislature.

To many protesters, allowing extradition would winnow away at the basic rights of Hongkongers and cede far too much power to the PRC, tilting an already-tenuous balance to mainland China's authoritarian government.

Police also fired tear gas into subway stations, posed as protesters, and arrested at least 12 protesters in the last day. More than 500 people have been arrested over the last 10 weeks of protests.

Jocelyn Chau, a community organizer and pro-Democracy politician who hopes to be elected to local government in November, was live-streaming the event for social media—not actively participating in protests or wearing protective gear—when she was beaten by cops and arrested.

Reporters and medics were also allegedly targeted and harassed by Hong Kong police.

As all this was going on in subway stations and on the streets, airport protests continued. On Monday, authorities shut down all flights in and out of Chek Lap Kok airport, an international hub which typically schedules more than 1,000 flights daily—one of the busiest on the continent. A government spokesperson in Beijing said protesters show "signs of terrorism," despite the peaceful presence they've maintained over the last few days in the airport. Another Chinese government spokesperson said, "These violent, illegal actions must be met with a determined legal crackdown, with no softening of hands or any sign of mercy," per the Los Angeles Times.

As of a few hours ago, video footage spread by one of China's national English-language newspapers shows tanks lining up in Shenzhen, which borders Hong Kong. It's unclear at this point whether Chinese military forces will be moving in or whether this is China flexing.

Meanwhile, China continues to put out propaganda videos in an attempt to erode Hongkongers' credibility:

More on the situation in Hong Kong here.

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  1. Looks like all of this trade with China has really done a lot to get its government to be less authoritarian.

    1. Didja notice it only happened AFTER the trade war had been going on for a while?

      You’re not the only one capable of finding spurious correlations. But mine’s better.

      1. What correlation was he making?

        1. He was making the anti-correlation that raising tariffs didn’t keep China quiet.

          Or something. See what you want to see, you only fool yourself.

          1. “”He was making the anti-correlation that raising tariffs didn’t keep China quiet.””

            He didn’t mention tariffs.

            “”See what you want to see, you only fool yourself.””

            Take your own advice.

          2. There was once a thought that China becoming an economic power via trade would make them less authoritarian. John is critiquing that.

            But only John can say if I’m correct. But if you look at his words, my comment in more in line with what he wrote, than your comment about tariffs since he made no mention of tariffs.

      2. Did you notice China began cracking down on Christians, ethnic minorities, etc long before the trade wars? That premier Xi is once again making Mao a hero and denying the autraucities committed by the first Chairman? That China over the past decade has become increasingly beligarent to it’s neighbors and has been threatening international waters? That Xi is an authoritarian who is accused of multiple human rights violations, long before the trade war? But you’re right it must be the trade war.

        1. As an aside, parastrika only occurred after Breshnev died, Reagan didn’t negotiate with him, and Gorbachev was already making reforms when the west opened up trade. It is a myth free trade ended the Soviet Union, free trade just sped up the end after reform was already under way.

          1. Star Wars ended the Soviet Union.

    2. +100

    3. After Tianamen the Chinese knew they had to do something to make lives better for their people, lest the next protest garner sympathy from their military and kill of communism. Which shortly after happened in the USSR. So enter controlled capitalism,* which greatly improves the lives of much [but certainly not all] of the populace.

      So far so good, until these pesky Hong Kongers get all uppity and want both economic AND political freedom. They will either have to be put in their place or other Chinese will follow suit.

      *I believe that is called fascism. The real kind, not what punks in black like to call anyone they don’t like.

      1. Better standard of living equals able to buy more stuff but the state still treats you like chattel slaves? Go with that if you want.

      2. No, fascism is socialism without government ownership, but with cronyism between gov and favored companies. At least that’s how Mussolini imagined it.

    4. I’ve been to China several times over the last 7 years and I can see the visible improvements in the material standard of living for a lot of people. So there have been definite and, in many cases, dramatic benefits from China partially opening their economy and from more international trade.

      Unfortunately, political freedoms seem to be backsliding from an already poor starting point. That doesn’t mean trade was a bad idea.

      1. Well said. I’m not even sure that political freedoms are “backsliding.” China has a long history of repressing political speech. This seems to be more of the same.

        1. Hell just about every place in the world has a long history of repressing political speech. Most people today, including these proyesters, desperately want an authoritarian government so long as their authoritarian is in place.

    5. That has to be one of the dumbest things you’ve ever written, which is completely confirmed with retard1789’s endorsement. Seriously. What do free trade and political freedom have in common? Not a God damn thing! Fucking shit John. I ditch this place and you have to make such a stupid that I logged back in. I thought you were smarter than that.

      1. Check out that Sarcasmic the douchebag is back.

      2. “I ditch this place…”

        Now if we can only get Tony, Pedo Jeffey, Pedo Sarah Palin Buttplugger, and other trolls and socks to leave….

        1. Before you arrived they were the resident dumbasses. Now they are the intelligent ones.

          No I’m not back.

          Thing is, I actually like John. If we met in person I would shake his hand. In your case I’d piss on your shoes.

          So it bugs me when he says something that stupid.

          1. You’re not wrong. Some of these new guys make all the old idiots seem like near-geniuses, and all the people I used to be routinely in annoyed disagreement with seem like some of the most sensible, agreeable people on Earth.

            retard1789 is near the top of the list, though the new Tulpa may be ahead, along with First of the Shitheads.

        2. Oh God, dude. People were laughing at you when I starting lurking at reason and up until you left because nobody wanted to hear your bullshit anymore.

          Now if we can just get all these shitty reason writers to go with you, we might have a Libertarian website.

          1. I do find it funny that a bunch of reason staff socks are getting ignored and burnt and then suddenly Sarcasmic reappears.

          2. Nobody was laughing at sarcasmic. You, however, have always been the laughing stock of those here with a brain cell count above that of a tadpole.

            1. That’s not true! I make funny jokes! It was part of my shtick!

              Here’s one. How many retard1789s does it take to screw in a light bulb? Only one. But he sterilized himself while doing it! Haaa ha ha ha… Yeah, well, I made it up on the spot. I ain’t no Mrs Maizel. No moobs.

              1. I said laughing “at” not “laughing with”.

                If you thought you were laying down sick jokes, then that explains a lot.

            2. Poor Chipper MW feels left out because people were laughing at him too.

              I get it, you don’t want to be the morons who everyone laughs at. Stop saying stupid shit and your fellow trolls.

              1. You are terrible at this, guy.

                1. You are terrible at everything ChipperMW, including being a troll.

                  Your opinion mans nothing.

              2. Maybe get your mom to help you out with some comebacks.

            3. Sarcasmic was one of the old regulars. Everyone laughed at each other, for sure, be he never stood out. Now, it’s basically the loudest screechers creating a wannabe echo chamber through the incredibly sophisticated tactic of being able to type childish insults and accusations of pedophilia faster than sensible people can make thoughtful arguments.

              I’m supremely confident that a large majority of the old regulars find this new batch of idiots to be teetering between massively laughable and massively cringe-worthy.

      3. What do free trade and political freedom have in common? Not a God damn thing!

        Oh really?

        Cato disagrees

        5. Free trade encourages other basic human rights, such as freedom of speech and religion.

        This is probably the most contentious of the seven reasons, and it goes to the heart of the current debate about trade with China and the use of sanctions in the name of human rights and democracy. By raising the general standard of living, free trade helps people achieve higher levels of education and to gain access to alternative sources of information. It helps to create a more independently minded middle class that can form the backbone of more representative kinds of government. The wealth created from expanded trade can help to nurture and sustain civil institutions that can offer ideas and influence outside of government. The emergence of civil liberties and more representative government in countries such as Taiwan, South Korea, and Mexico can be credited in large part to economic development spurred by free trade and market reforms.


        1. It says “helps” and “encourages,” not “causes.”

          Correct me if I”m wrong, but I read your original comment to mean “Trading with China didn’t turn them into a free republic. That means Cato is run by dumbasses and we need to stop trading with them.”

          1. That’s exactly what John said, and its only real purpose was providing another opportunity for Trumpistas to take the bait.

            1. If you say so.

          2. That was the obvious insinuation. But these guys like to insinuate rather than make actual arguments (no doubt because the arguments their insinuations are intended to support are obviously idiotic in their own right) and then cry “straw man!” at any attempted rebuttal, all while of course doing nothing more than creating straw men of their own, coupled with screechy ad hominem attacks in chorus.

      4. So does Reason

        Cuba’s new leaders also say they welcome foreign investment. Maybe this will bring some prosperity to the long-suffering Cuban population.

        It may bring more freedom, too. The new draft says a criminal defendant is innocent until proven guilty. That’s progress. It also sets term limits on presidents—no more than two consecutive five-year terms. Fidel Castro ruled for 50 years.

        Free trade equals more political freedom has been an argument made by free trade advocates for decades.

        Did you not know that and thus are completely fucking ignorant of your own position or are you just lying your ass off?

        1. Reason says “may” and you say “equals.”

          Come on. You’re more honest than this.

        2. Is it possible that trade can result in more political freedom? Absolutely!

          Is it possible that authoritarian assholes can allow more trade while remaining authoritarian assholes? Absolutely!

          I understand my position perfectly.

          As I see it you are turning it into a straw man argument. Straw man says “trade must necessarily result in political freedom,” and because that didn’t happen, free trade must be abandoned.

          Correct me if I am wrong.

          1. It is sold as resulting in political freedom. It never does. China is proof of that. Political freedom causes trade not the other way around.

            1. Words like “may,” “encourages” and “helps” don’t guarantee results. Especially in the short term. You’re countering an argument that nobody is making.

              China is proof that freer trade results in a greater standard of living. I don’t see how you can deny that.

              Perhaps when the rising standard of living “helps” to “encourage” people to take risks, they “may” achieve more political freedom.

              Whatever. You’re fixated on your straw man. I’m sorry I dropped by.

              1. China is proof that freer trade results in a greater standard of living.

                It depends on what your definition of “is” is.

                China is Communist so people don’t own anything that the state does not let them have.

                Bye bye goober.

                1. I will listen to LynchPin1477 who has been there over some retard who replies to every post in hopes of getting the attention that he doesn’t get in his pathetic personal life. Fuck off, loser.

                  1. Haha. Of course you listen to trolls, sarcasmic.

                    Funny that You think I care about being liked by non-Libertarians.

              2. Better standard of living equals able to buy more stuff but the state still treats you like chattel slaves? Go with that if you want.

                1. I bet the people who live there would rather not let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

                  1. Yes because so many people are willing to trade comfort for freedom. Then again, this may be true, at least for awhile.

              3. I once made the mistake of engaging John on a matter of nuance. Once he’s got his teeth sunk into a strawman like a thrashing pit bull, just give it up. He’s not going to let go.

                Otherwise he’s one of my favorite commenters.

                1. John has banged more strawmen than the Wizard of Oz.

                  1. *spit take*

                2. John has become rather unhinged lately. I used to like his posting style (though I usually disagreed with the content). Lately he’s barely distinguishable from new-Tulpatard and retard1789 and First of the Shitheads.

  2. Let’s see;
    Communists take over a once capitalist country.
    Communists begin to suppress freedoms.
    Citizens used to freedom think they can still demonstrate.
    Demonstrations are ignored, and are ineffective.
    Demonstrators become rioters.
    Riots are noticed by communists, troops begin to move.
    Riots are met with official violence.
    Rioters are designated terrorists.
    Troops move closer, police move from containment to violence.
    Riots continue.
    Police move from violence to lethal tactics.
    Sound familiar?

    And yet socialists politicians continue to run for public office, and get elected.

  3. A relative small, classically liberal society cannot remain semi autonomous for long attached to an authoritarian power. Something must give, and it is unlikely to be the larger entity.

    1. USSR had small enclaves of non-Communists that were emboldened by Glasnost. While the comparisons are not exactly similar, there are some similarities.

      China experienced their own version of Glasnost over the last 15-20 years with more and more average Chinese workers becoming wealthier and have more stuff. People getting used to private property might be a great way to undermine Communist regimes. It does appear that Hing Kongers are very different than mainland China citizens. Of course, mainland Chinese stood up to the Commie military 20 years ago too.

      1. Hong Kong was part of the British Commonwealth until 20 years ago. Even after, China pretty much allowed them autonomy until recently. The comparison to Mainland China is non-sequitor.b

        1. This entire protest is about the Hong Kong “autonomy” being a lie. This extradition is the last straw not the first straw.

    2. One common mistake that most people make when speaking about “other countries” is to assume that they are monolithic. This assumption is always false.

      I lived in China during the change of power from Hu Jintao to Xi Jinping, and for several years after. While Xi was embraced at the beginning of his first term (because of his promise to root out corruption in government), I saw that change over the following years. A lot of the Chinese I spoke with hinted (internal politics are a touchy subject–especially with foreigners) that they were afraid that Xi would take them back to a Maoist state.

      Most of the Chinese I spoke with don’t want that. They’re enjoying the economic benefits that came from Deng Xiaoping’s opening of China to foreign industry. The parents of the people I knew were peasants. *Literally* peasants. Their children live in nice apartments, own cell phones, have the (albeit restricted) internet, watch historic dramas on 40+-inch flat-screen TVs, shop in French and German supermarkets (and buy luxuries like ice cream and Argentinian wine), and have a degree of economic (and personal) freedom that is unprecedented in their country.

      The danger that Hong Kong presents to the CPC is not “the little guy will leave China”. It’s “the little guy will inspire the Mainland to wake up and cast off the authority of the Party”.

      “Party membership” is like a “health club membership”. There may be a lot of people on the list, but only a handful actually participate. A strong showing by Hong Kong–and a violent response by the Mainland–might be the spark in the powder keg.

      *That* is what Xi fears.

      1. interesting.

        Someday hopefully Chinese that socialist government are inherently corrupt. They depend on the peasants living by rules that Party officials dont live by.

  4. Confucius say: “Man who run from police dog by weaving through pylons, crossing seesaw, and jumping thru hoop of fire will usually get caught.”

    1. That quote sounds like bull Shih Tzu to me.

    2. Confucius say man who throw white and brown paint in anger going to end up with wrath of Beijing.

  5. Did anyone ever hear from “tank guy” from the Tianamen Square protests 1989? I believe they truly disappeared him for good.

    1. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/tiananmen-square-what-happened-to-tank-man-9483398.html

      You’d think that if he wasn’t executed, we would have heard something by now.

    2. China Says Hong Kong Protests Show ‘First Signs of Terrorism’

      Check out this video (:20) someone in Hong Kong is carrying an American Flag….and it’s not on fire.

  6. Remember when Americans used to have bumper stickers that said “Free Tibet”?

    Chinese Communists swallowed that independent nation whole too.

    1. Or Americans just ate Tibet whole when we switched our bumper stickers to “Free Lunch”.

    2. Yep. And increasing Maoist re-education camps in Katmandu and India.

      1. If you ever get out of Katmandu, where are you going to go?

        1. Bob Seger is from Detroit. K-k-k-k-k-k-katmandu might still be an upgrade.

          1. I heard he went back there when he had to Get Out Of Denver.

        2. Confucius say man who bang furry in Garfield suit end up in Katmandu.

    3. Richard Gere is basically blacklisted from Hollywood because of his support for a free Tibet.

  7. This will not end well.

  8. Somehow I doubt that we would see such resistance to tyranny here in the US — sad.

    1. Having lived under “normal in China”, and having many friends there: I hope everything gets turned upside down.

  9. “When using these rounds, police are supposed to target extremities, not necks or faces.”

    If their cops shoot as accurately as our cops, they may have been targeting extremities.

    1. For all than we know, the police was aiming for the torso of a man standing next to her and missed. If her head was near the same level as the torsos of people around her then it is possible that was an accident. Non lethal ammo does not mean no permanent injury possible.

      1. Anything is possible. But look at the video in this article of the cops in the subway station. Front and center that cop shoots people point blank at head level. It even looks like the round bounces off someone’s helmet. It is clear the HK police are using excessive force.

        1. They hit at point blank range? I was wrong. They ARE better shots than our cops.

  10. The shocking thing for me is that the police are resorting to this level of violence. I would have thought these were also Hong Kong citizens, and they must be aware that these laws are affecting them too. Or are they transplants that have been brought in from China over the past several years?

    1. I have not seen a single video where protesters have used violence, yet the Chinese government is calling them terrorists. Of course, we all know that “terrorism” requires violence, usually against civilians, in the furtherance of a political goal.

  11. I’m sure every socialist turd out there is cheering on the cops and their communist thugs in Beijing.
    This what socialism looks like: Brutal, unmerciful and filled with thugs ready to beat anyone to death to further their oppression over all us little people.
    Ask me again why I hate socialism and the lies that come with it.

    1. +100

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