Thu, Oct 17, 2019 - Page 8 News List

The Liberty Times Editorial: China a threat to civilized world

Tensions between the US and China remain high.

On Monday last week, the US Department of Commerce announced that it would blacklist 28 Chinese companies, including major video surveillance firm Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology, because of their connections to “human rights violations and abuses in China’s campaign targeting Uighurs and other predominantly Muslim ethnic minorities in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region.”

On the same day, National Basketball Association commissioner Adam Silver said that the league would not apologize for Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey exercising his freedom of expression.

He was referring to Morey’s tweet on Oct. 4 that read: “Fight For Freedom. Stand With Hong Kong” — which sparked a huge outcry in China.

Meanwhile, the creators of the popular US cartoon South Park issued a mock “official apology” on Twitter, ridiculing China after Beijing scrapped all its episodes, clips and related content from Chinese streaming and social media platforms in response to an episode that was critical of the Chinese government.

All these incidents show that the US and China have created a new battlefield over human rights and freedom of expression.

The US-China trade dispute arose from an economic conflict between the two countries. However, the dispute, which has been raging for more than a year, has expanded into many sectors — technology, currency and even the realms of systems and values.

Once the conflict grew, it would inevitably lead to a clash between the two nations’ dfferent systems and values, as China is essentially using protectionism, nationalism and its authoritarian system of government to fight a free society.

The tumult brought about by the NBA and South Park issues reflects the inevitable conflict arising from Chinese nationalism, with Beijing pushing “the great rejuvenation of the Chinese people,” and the rise of communist China versus the civilized world.

The controversies surrounding the NBA and South Park are just the beginning, as the clash between China, closely resembling Germany under the Nazis, and the free world will only intensify.

Under such circumstances, the free world might be affected, but it is unlikely that China’s digital totalitarian regime will be able stand firm against the spread of free democracy and universal values.

Human nature longs for freedom and democracy. One-man or one-party rule, or a narrow-minded nationalism focusing on hatred, might be able to manipulate and deceive the public for a short period, but autocracy will inevitably be despised. This, history has taught us.

In recent years, notably since Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) came to power, Beijing has increasingly used its sharp power to force and tempt countries in the free world to surrender to its authoritarian system and its values — and the methods with which it pursues this end have become all the more aggressive and violent.

It is possible that other countries are not fully aware of what China is doing to suppress people within its own borders in Xinjiang and Tibet, which it insists are purely internal affairs, or the manifestations of its territorial ambitions, as evidenced by its attempts to marginalize and infiltrate Taiwan.

Or perhaps these countries feel it is beyond their power to do anything about it, and are thus unable to offer substantial support.

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