‘Stand’ of Blinken and his like has nothing to do with press freedom

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Hong Kong police on Wednesday arrested six senior and former senior members of Stand News, including activist Denise Ho Wan See, on suspicion of “conspiracy to print or distribute inflammatory publications, in violation of Sections 9 and 10 of the Crimes Act.” Stand News immediately announced to cease operations and dismissed all staff members. Several other people involved in the case are wanted by the police. This is a legitimate and natural law-enforcement action taken by the Hong Kong police. A large number of Hongkongers who love the country and the city said the news has greatly cheered the people.

But how can politicians in the US and the West easily let go of such a just act? US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, UK minister of state for Asia Amanda Milling, and Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly all denounced the arrests, crying out for “justice” for those criminals, as if they were following a written script.

First of all, it needs to be emphasized that Stand News is essentially an organization, under the guise of a media outlet, which is opposed to China and is attempting to destabilize Hong Kong. It was founded by several radical opposition members following the 2014 Occupy Central farce. From its establishment to disbanding, its stand has been anti-China and it has sought to destabilize Hong Kong, which remained unchanged. The reports and articles it published were all centered around this stand, with an initial intent to turn the failed Occupy Central movement into a violent one. During the 2019 “anti-extradition bill” incident, Stand News played a role in inciting violence.

We wonder if Mr. Blinken has ever read the articles of Stand News. In May, it reposted an article titled “Viewing the future of Hong Kong’s resistance from the experience of resistance in Northern Ireland,” which incited Hong Kong residents to follow the model of the “Irish Republican Army” in carrying out “resistance activities” in Hong Kong. Blinken should have known that the “Irish Republican Army” has been designated a terrorist organization by many countries, including the UK. Real Irish Republican Army, a splinter group of the Irish Republican Army, was named by US State Department as terrorist organization. If a US “media outlet” published an article calling for people to learn from Al Qaeda to organize “resistance” in Washington, whose “journalists” directly participated in the storming of Capitol Hill, would Blinken still consider this to be “freedom of the press” and tolerate it?
There is a recent fact that Mr. Blinken should not forget: In January, three days after the Capitol Hill riot, Senator Mark Warner, who would later become chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, called on 11 mobile carriers and social media companies, including Apple, Facebook, Twitter and Google, to preserve content and data connected with the riot in order to prosecute the rioters. Washington also formed an investigation team to hold accountable those who did not participate in the riot but published inflammatory speeches. Do you think this is suppression of “freedom of the press,” Mr. Blinken?

No country or government can tolerate acts of incitement to riots and hatred. China has never pointed its fingers at the US on how it should deal with the demonstrators who attacked the Capitol, nor has it arrogantly demanded that the US “release them.” Similarly, how the relevant personnel of Stand News are dealt with will be determined by Hong Kong law. Western politicians such as Blinken have neither the legal qualifications nor justified reasons to reverse the case.

Stand News has had assets of HK$61 million frozen, the largest amount ever in a case solved by the National Security Department of the Hong Kong Police Force. Stand News does not charge subscriptions or sponsorship fees, and does not carry many advertisements. Steve Li Kwai-wah, senior superintendent of the National Security Department, asked why there is enough funding for this media outlet to establish a branch in the UK? We would also like to ask, is it because there is behind-the-scenes US funding, which is why Washington is so frustrated?

For a long time, American and Western politicians have regarded Hong Kong as an “anti-China bridgehead.” Now they see the bridgeheads being eradicated one by one, it is easy to imagine their anger. But they can only vent their anger by issuing a “statement of condemnation.” Hong Kong will never become a paradise for gangsters, as their wish.

-The Daily Mail-Global Times News Exchange Item