World Hong Kong protesters hit pause to mark 9/11 attacks - Aww

Cosmos

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Hong Kong activists called off protests on Wednesday in remembrance of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States and denounced a Chinese state newspaper report that they were planning "massive terror" in the Chinese-ruled city.

Hong Kong has been rocked by months of sometimes violent unrest, prompted by anger over planned legislation that would have allowed extraditions to China but broadening into calls for democracy and for Communist Party rulers in Beijing to leave the city alone.

"Anti-government fanatics are planning massive terror attacks, including blowing up gas pipes, in Hong Kong on September 11," the Hong Kong edition of the China Daily said on its Facebook page on Tuesday alongside a picture of the attacks on the twin towers in New York.

"The 9/11 terror plot also encourages indiscriminate attacks on non-native speakers of Cantonese and starting mountain fires," it said. The Facebook post said "leaked information was part of the strategy being schemed by radical protesters in their online chat rooms."

The former British colony of Hong Kong returned to China in 1997 under a "one country, two systems" formula that guarantees freedoms not enjoyed on the mainland, including an independent legal system, triggering the anger over the extradition bill.


Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam has said she will withdraw the bill but many Hong Kong residents fear Beijing is steadily eroding the city's autonomy.

China denies meddling and has accused the United States, Britain and others of fomenting the unrest.

"We don’t even need to do a fact check to know that this is fake news," protester Michael, 24, said of the China Daily post.

"The state media doesn’t care about its credibility. Whenever something they claimed to have heard on WhatsApp or friends’ friends, they will spread it right away," he said.

The protesters called off action on Wednesday.

"In solidarity against terrorism, all forms of protest in Hong Kong will be suspended on Sept. 11, apart from potential singing and chanting," they said in a statement.

Protester Karen, 23, said the China Daily report was worrying.

“When they try to frame the whole protest with those words, it alarms me. They are predicting rather than reporting," she said. "I think people calling it off today is a nice move.

The protests spread to the sports field on Tuesday, as many football fans defied Chinese law to boo the national anthem ahead of a soccer World Cup qualifier against Iran.

Several peaceful protests are planned for coming days, combining with festivities marking the Mid-Autumn Festival.
It’s really funny that the Chinese government is like “THEY’RE DANGEROUS TERRORISTS WHO WILL KILL PEOPLE” and the protestors responded by being classy and respectful towards the victims of terrorism.
 

Kari Kamiya

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Paying respects to a country outside of their protests on a tragic day? Say what you want about Asia, that's pretty damn admirable.
It's pretty neat, but the 9/11 attacks didn't affect just America, the majority of the world felt that shock wave, even if it was just as simple(?) as airport security getting tighter. The protesters didn't have to, but for what it's worth, this is them sticking it to the Chinese propaganda machine. Even if deep down they don't really care about American plights, they understand what real terrorism is and can sympathize (if not empathize). They also understand that despite what the events had snowballed into that we see now, America is still a freer country than Hong Kong, and they just want to have the capability of having that same luxury.

Fight on, Hong Kong.
 

crocodilian

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It's pretty neat, but the 9/11 attacks didn't affect just America, the majority of the world felt that shock wave, even if it was just as simple(?) as airport security getting tighter. The protesters didn't have to, but for what it's worth, this is them sticking it to the Chinese propaganda machine. Even if deep down they don't really care about American plights, they understand what real terrorism is and can sympathize (if not empathize). They also understand that despite what the events had snowballed into that we see now, America is still a freer country than Hong Kong, and they just want to have the capability of having that same luxury.
Hong Kong has a not-so-subdued boner for the United States. Hong Kong Basic Law is about as close to a Constitution as you'll find in a mainland Asian nation, awarding them a lot of the rights valued here such as freedom of speech, and the population has openly fought against several proposed articles that would infringe on that in the past (One Country Two Systems, Article 23, the current riots over fugitive rights.) Meanwhile their opinion of China has been dropping immensely.
 

Pocket Dragoon

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I wonder how many of those protesting were alive when 9/11 happened.

So far today I've seen far more of them (and from other countries as well) giving proper respect to the memory of that day & genuinely honoring the fallen, than what's being exhibited by America's youth.

On top of that, our society's collective memory is being punched so full of holes & parcelled into web pages of dubious intent and/or source, that it's little wonder things like 9/11 and the Pledge of Allegiance have little meaning in schools or media anymore, much less things like honoring fallen ancestors & great struggles.

At least asians are pretty big on those counts; which makes it a lot easier to sympathise with those protestors, and accept their gesture of respect as true.
 

Crippled Eagle

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This may just be my inner cynic, but part of me thinks this is an emotional tactic to garner US sympathy towards Hong Kong. It reads like “We will never forget about you, so please don’t forget about us.”
That's literally all it is, however I also believe that the underlying sentiment of solidarity between democratic peoples is still there.
 
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