US President Trump recently held a press conference announcing that he would cancel the special status granted to Hong Kong. Prior to this, the foreign ministers of the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada issued a joint statement, "worried" that China's deliberations on the enactment of national security legislation concerning Hong Kong may undermine the principle of "one country, two systems."
Some Western politicians are unreasonable, domineering, arrogant, hypocritical and double standards: they may deliberately do not understand the true meaning of "one country, two systems"; deliberately treat Hong Kong as an independent political entity, and are protected by Western forces for A political entity serving Western interests; deliberately ignoring the fact that the Constitution of the People’s Republic of China and the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region together constitute the constitutional order of Hong Kong, and ignoring the fact that the Basic Law has never provided for the monopoly of Hong Kong’s national legislation by the SAR.
So in the real world, will the West stand up to safeguard the so-called "freedom" of Hong Kong, as some politicians have said? Although Washington has often shown an irrational and wanton behavior recently, it is difficult to speculate, but if it is analyzed rationally, it can be considered from two dimensions: First, the US government’s foreign policy is now based on short-term interests. One, reduce participation and commitment in international affairs, reduce participation in international organizations, unwilling to pay for the interests of other places, let alone sacrifice; second, the US attitude towards Hong Kong affairs is not essentially the relationship between the United States and Hong Kong, It is the relationship between the United States and China. Some members of the current US government have a hostile attitude toward China, but the prerequisite is that they do not have to pay a significant price.
Understanding these two dimensions, it is not difficult to find that the United States has a lot of "tricks" in theory, and it is bound to launch a fierce offensive in politics and public opinion. But in reality, the United States has few sanction tools to deal a heavy blow to the mainland and Hong Kong, and it only has to pay a very low price. The vast majority of practical actions that can be taken are options with high costs and small benefits, and they will incur substantial losses for themselves.
Trump announced that he would cancel the special status accorded to Hong Kong, but did not say when and how far this step should be taken. What needs to be seen is that the United States itself has huge economic, trade and financial interests in Hong Kong, and any means of attacking the status of Hong Kong’s independent customs territory and financial center will cause a blow to these interests, and the heavier the means, the loss of the United States itself The heavier it is. In addition, if the United States adopts relevant measures, the Chinese government will not sit idly by, and will inevitably counterattack. This counterattack will not be limited to Hong Kong, which will also cause losses to the United States.
In addition, the US sanctions on Hong Kong also means that its influence in Hong Kong will decline rapidly. Hong Kong is a free port in the world. It is not the United States that can determine its development direction. As long as the importance of the Asia-Pacific region in the world’s political and economic development is still rising, as long as China’s position and influence in the world are still rising, then the United States The impact of any sanctions will be short-term. Different talents and capitals around the world will also compete for the platform of Hong Kong, and the abandonment of the United States will mean that it will soon be replaced by capitals, enterprises and talents in the Mainland and other markets. If you want to return in the future, it will cost even more. .
In fact, the positions of American companies in Hong Kong and Washington may not be the same. American financial and legal service institutions occupy a large share in Hong Kong, covering foreign exchange, stocks, futures, asset management and legal consulting and other markets, and have made huge profits. Unless American legislation forces them to withdraw from Hong Kong, these institutions will only decide to stay based on the safety and return of future investment in Hong Kong, whether the rule of law and stability of Hong Kong are maintained, and whether the mainland Chinese market is still attractive, rather than some What the politicians said was that they decided to stay because of a national security law involving Hong Kong. Commercial organizations are even more worried about the indirect impact of the US government's crackdown on Hong Kong. I believe some of these organizations have already carried out related lobbying work in Washington.
Considering the above circumstances, once the national security legislation related to Hong Kong begins to be implemented in practice, the opposition it may face in some western countries may be smaller than it is now: the reason why various voices are now "noisy" is largely because the United States wants to "Loud" forced China to change its decision.
But what they need to understand is that China should have a pre-judgment of all possible reactions to the outside world. These will not change the determination and decisions of the Chinese government and 1.4 billion people: an important purpose of the introduction of national security legislation related to Hong Kong is just right. It is to crack down on the presence of foreign political forces in Hong Kong, to compress the space for foreign forces and their agents in Hong Kong, and to prevent them from causing unrest and subversion.
It is foreseeable that the days of pro-Western political forces in Hong Kong will become increasingly sad. Hong Kong-related national security legislation will certainly not undermine the human rights and freedom of speech of Hong Kong people, but it will certainly also attack the freedom of the West and its agents to endanger China’s national security. (The author is the vice president of the National Hong Kong and Macao Research Association)