Thursday, December 18, 2014

Hong Kong Protests End


Photo: Vincent Yu/ AP 

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After more than eleven weeks of pro-democracy demonstrations in Hong Kong, the protestors have been finally evicted from their encampments. 
After the government obtained court injunctions to dismantle the barricades and clear the camps – the police and their minions moved in to purge the streets. Those who refused to leave were hauled off. Seventeen arrests were made when the very last protest camp in the Causeway Bay shopping district was pulled down on Monday. There were scuffles here and there but resistance was futile.
Even as the protests petered out, China claimed victory. Still, this large-scale popular uprising turned out to be the biggest challenge to Beijing’s authority since the territory was handed over by Britain to China in 1997. It has ignited fierce debate about Hong Kong’s future.
Even as the protestors surrendered, they vowed to fight on and future confrontations cannot be ruled out – especially in the face of Beijing’s increasing influence on the semi-autonomous city.
But even I know that Beijing will stand firm and continue to maintain a firm grip on Hong Kong politics.
Still, I don't think it was a failure just because the protestors didn’t achieve their goals, i.e.  forcing CY Leung to resign and getting Beijing to back away from plans to introduce what they see as "fake democracy" for the 2017 leadership election.
There was a political awakening. And a new generation of young protestors have risen up, ready to do battle. Some causes are indeed worth fighting for!

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