For the Communist Party of China, the truth becomes a lie while a lie becomes the truth.
International agreements appear to mean nothing to the revisionist regime of President Xi Jinping.
“Under Xi, the current hard-line leadership maintains its grasp on power by waging an all-out war against universal values,” Feng Chongyi, a professor of Chinese Studies at the University of Technology in Sydney, said.
“[It is] suffocating Chinese civil society and eliminating any opportunity of a peaceful transformation toward constitutional democracy,” he wrote in a commentary for The Conversation, an academic website.
Those comments struck a chord this week after a speech by Hanscom Smith, the outgoing US Consul General to Hong Kong, at the American Chamber of Commerce.
“True patriotism is earned by winning the allegiance of free people, rather than futile efforts to legislate ‘patriotism’ and loyalty from above,” he said, referring to the catch-all National Security Law that has stifled free speech in the city.
“The application of this law has been broad, crude, and chilling,” Smith pointed out in a farewell address.
In response, Beijing’s propaganda machine clicked into overdrive by rolling out the usual suspects in a state-run media blitz.
“Smith’s biased, distorted and untruthful depiction of the developments in Hong Kong is essentially a piece of hostile political propaganda delivered in the context of rising US-China rivalry, and in keeping with anti-China sentiment in the US, particularly among American politicians, Lau Siu-kai, the deputy head of the Chinese Association of Hong Kong & Macao Studies, told state-controlled Global Times.
Since the crackdown on Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement after the summer of discontent in 2019, thousands of activists have been arrested under the Beijing-imposed National Security Law.
More than “68 civil society organizations and media outlets” have also been forced to close down, effectively ending the “One Country, Two Systems” model.
But then, the lies perpetrated by the ruling Communist Party do not end there. They are now embedded in China’s foreign policy.
List of deceit:
- Beijing claims more than 90% of the South China Sea, flouting international law.
- China has militarized disputed atolls, cays and micro islands along this maritime superhighway in the past seven years.
- The build-up continues despite President Xi denying there were any plans to establish military strongholds on the artificial islands in 2015.
- A year later, a United Nations-backed arbitration tribunal invalidated China’s sweeping historical assertions under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
- Xi’s administration simply dismissed the ruling and has continued to ignore the territorial waters of Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam.
- Up to US$3 trillion of trade traverses through the South China Sea, making it a vital economic lifeline.
Delve deeper: State media have pushed the Party’s distorted line on “democracy” at home while the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has turned the “truth into lies” abroad.
Fact from fiction: “The CCP [Communist Party] lays claim to the establishment of a “people’s democracy” in China. But in reality, the Party established a totalitarian state that interrupted China’s march toward constitutional democracy,” Feng, of the University of Technology in Sydney, said in a commentary.
China Factor comment: The “China Miracle” is built on a myth surrounded by the Great Firewall and a highly-sophisticated state-run surveillance system to silence dissent.