lørdag 17. august 2019

Why do mainland Chinese and Hong Kong youth clash at universities abroad? History has the answer

We should not be surprised by the vociferouscounterprotests mounted against Hong Kong students abroad by mainland Chinese, particularly within Australia – but we should try to understand why they happen.In universities throughout Australia, pro-Beijing counterprotesters have confronted Hong Kong democracy advocates. At a minimum, pro-democracy posters have been torn down and replaced with messages of support for communist China. At times, violence has ensued.

Large numbers of young people from mainland China have been invited to Australia, to live, study and, of course, to spend their money. Abroad, they enjoy levels of freedom of speech unseen in the People’s Republic – so we should not be surprised when they speak freely, and speak up for China. To understand their views, we need to pay attention to history.