Police fire rounds of tear gas to disperse radicals, decked out in full protest gear, in Tsuen Wan, Hong Kong, on Aug 25, 2019. (Photo: Xinhua)
Law-abiding people in Hong Kong have been appalled by the violence that erupted in the special administrative region over the weekend while the SAR government warned in a statement that the acts of extremists are pushing the city toward an "extremely dangerous situation".
In one worrying incident a mob of violent demonstrators used metal poles, bricks and gasoline bombs to attack a small group of police officers, who felt compelled to draw their guns, with one firing a shot in the air as warning.
The incident shows not only how threatened the police officers feel, but also the extent to which provocateurs are pushing the more extreme insurrectionists.
The tactics that are being employed include attacks on police stations and officers on duty, the malicious publication of police officers' personal information online, the bullying of their children both in school and online, and the sieges of police living quarters. Such psychological warfare is being waged to dispirit the police force and create a climate of fear with the ultimate aim of crippling the city's law enforcement capacity.
At the same time, the malicious sabotaging of the mass transit rail system, the deliberate obstruction of major transport arteries and the rampant occupation of the international airport that forced the cancellation of thousands of flights are premeditated moves to hold the city's economy and citizens' livelihoods hostage.
Those who are the unseen hands orchestrating such acts are trying to force a response from the Chinese mainland that would damage its image worldwide and lead to an exodus of foreign investment.
Hong Kong people who genuinely care for the city must wise up to the lies being told by the insurrectionists, opposition politicians and biased media — both local and foreign. Those pushing the city to the brink of chaos do not care for the well-being of the city or its residents.
The violent acts the extremists have been repeatedly perpetrating in the city do not fall into the bounds of freedom of expression recognized in any corner of the world. They are not simply a violent outpouring of frustration and despair, but psychological warfare aimed at intimidating residents, dispiriting the police force and bringing the SAR government to its knees in order to achieve broader political objectives.
All these acts together constitute a systematic use of violence as a means of achieving these political objectives — however unrealistic — which is fully in accord with the definition of terrorism.
Disgustingly, Western politicians who have an axe to grind with China have hailed the systematic attacks by the radicals in Hong Kong as the pursuit of freedom and democracy. They are anything but that. Such a campaign of terror cannot be allowed to continue.