Naive HK activists used in U.S. chess game
Liu Lulu

Editor's Note: Liu Lulu is an opinion editor with CGTN Digital. The article reflects the author's opinions, and not necessarily the views of CGTN.

Violence in Hong Kong has entered its 14th week. While those caring for the city are relieved to see demonstrations gradually dying down, activists made the headline again on Sunday. Radical demonstrators marched on the U.S. Consulate, calling for the White House to intervene in the ongoing political tensions.

"President Trump, please liberate Hong Kong," activists chanted. Waving U.S. flags and singing the U.S. national anthem, some rioters even set fire to the entrance of a subway station. More ridiculously, activists, in a letter planned to be presented to consulate officials, appeal for the passage of Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act 2019 by the U.S. Congress, CNN reported.

The whole farce has only shown how naive these young protesters are. "Democracy" and "freedom" are always easy tools used by Washington to lure these simpleminded young people into its dirty political game against Beijing. Brainwashed by Western forces, activists are wantonly trampling on the "rule of law," and ruthlessly destroying Hong Kong into an abyss for the city's "democratic" future.

Not realizing that they are merely a chess piece used by the United States, these young protesters naively hope that Trump would support their struggle for a "democratic" and "prosperous" Hong Kong. Colluding with the White House at the sacrifice of China's interests, they should better get prepared for the only ending waiting for them – being eventually discarded the United States.

To begin with, Washington's core interests, not Hong Kong's, is the only thing that Trump cares about. Since assuming office, the president has been holding high the banner of America First, withdrawing the country from a slew of international pacts and organizations.

Trump shows no interests in Hong Kong's internal affairs, and is merely using political tensions in Hong Kong as leverage in interactions with China, a "competitor" and "rival power" in Trump's National Security Strategy.

Protesters set a fire outside the Central MTR station in Hong Kong, China, September 8, 2019. /Reuters Photo

Protesters set a fire outside the Central MTR station in Hong Kong, China, September 8, 2019. /Reuters Photo

With the clock ticking toward the 2020 general election, a fundamental trade deal with such a "competitor" would be a huge boon for Trump to woo its voters. For this end, the president is trying by every possible means to pressure Beijing into an accord – instigating demonstrations against the fugitive bill and manipulating them into violent protests against China's central government in this case.

It is worth noting that even after Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam suspended and withdrew the controversial fugitive bill, intentionally instigated demonstrations have turned violent instead. This tells everything. There are also reports enumerating evidences of Washington sponsoring Hong Kong rioters.

In addition, as a businessman-turned-president, Trump is fully aware that the need to lure Hong Kong young people does not collide with Washington's core interests. This means, in spite of some senators' calls to pass the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, the bill is unlikely to go far.

Introduced in June, the act requires an annual review of Hong Kong's autonomy. The city's special economic privilege would be deprived if it is found not autonomous enough. By calling on the U.S. Congress to pass the act, protesters are pressuring China's central government to accede to their demands as the deprivation of the privilege could also mean huge losses to the mainland.

In fact, the privileges under Hong Kong Policy Act of 1992 are in the interests of not only Hong Kong and the Chinese mainland, but also the United States. Anyone with common sense will not challenge the current economic interactions that are beneficial for all sides. The U.S. may use the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act to threaten China, but is unlikely to pass it as it would only bring the country more losses than gains.

The naive activists may have behaved differently if they were mature enough to distinguish between Washington's dirty schemes and Hong Kong's core interests. Stop violence, restore peace and stability, and focus on development is the only way to help Hong Kong out.

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