A Hong Kong businessman named Jimmy Lai hopes our political leaders will support Hong Kong. He even suggests politicians consider flying to Hong Kong. Like JFK flew to Berlin during the Cold War, calling himself a Berliner.
- I suppose Trump could fly to Hong Kong and do the same. That would be a bold move if Trump did that. Politically speaking, it’d be a big gamble. He could win big or lose big.
If Trump did that, he might sway a lot of Asian-Americans to vote for him. In fact, he might sway a lot of moderates in general.
Not to mention Trump might sway other nations if he took the lead in supporting a democratic movement in Hong Kong. He might be able to move a lot of the international community to take action as well.
On the negative side, it could end up igniting an international crisis or something along those lines. This in turn could impact his political fortunes.
- Of course, it would sorely anger China. However, why would Trump care about angering China? For one thing, he’s already angered China with the trade war. Yet the trade war has brought China to the table to discuss fairer trade practices and so on. That’s because the trade war hits China where it hurts most, i.e., their economy. Otherwise the next decades could see the Chinese economy overtake ours and all that that would entail. At least to my knowledge, even a majority of Democrats support Trump attempting to stem China’s global ascendancy.
- I suppose the major problem would be this would signal to Hong Kong that we support them, but if push comes to shove I’m not sure what we could do to support Hong Kong against China. After all, if China did invade Hong Kong, then I don’t know what we could actually do about it short of going to war which of course no one wants.
At least as far as I can see, the best option is if we can convince other nations China is currently doing business with to stop doing business with China, then that would hurt China’s economy. If the threat of this is viable, then it might dissuade China from touching Hong Kong. However, this doesn’t necessitate Trump flying to Hong Kong. It could be accomplished behind the scenes, as it were.
- The issue for China is that they regard Hong Kong as theirs, along with other places like Taiwan, which China argues European colonial powers took away from them. Of course, China likes to push this narrative because they know it often works on guilt-ridden Westerners.
However, above and beyond politics, and in terms of “moral authority”, it comes down to democracy vs. communism. If we believe in democratic ideals, then why not support democratic movements (though that’s not to imply we should always do so)? Indeed, China supports spreading communism abroad.
Protesters in Hong Kong waving the American flag and singing the American National anthem as they advocate for democracy. Wow! pic.twitter.com/CKyFstud22
— Kaya Jones (@KayaJones) August 12, 2019