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International Politics / Current Events Thread


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Hey all! We have a thread dedicated to American politics, and I think it's worthwhile to have one dedicated to non-American politics 馃檪

So here it is.

Let's start off by discussing what many might call the "elephant in the room" - none other than China.

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A Chinese foreign ministry spokesman warned countries to stay out of China's affairs saying: "They should be careful or their eyes will be plucked out."

"The Chinese never make trouble and are never afraid of anything," Zhao Lijian told journalists in Beijing on Thursday, saying it did not "matter if they had five or 10 eyes".

That's a laughable statement - that China never makes trouble (the latter bit is of course silly too). All powerful countries "make trouble" and have made trouble, the USA is of course very guilty of numerous horrible deeds. BUT, that doesn't excuse what China is doing to the Uighurs or in this case trying to destroy a pro-democracy government. I've known Hong Kongers, they are no fans of China. Just to be clear, China has backtracked on what it promised聽

As a Special Administrative Region, Hong Kong was to have its own legal system, multiple political parties, and rights including freedom of assembly and free speech.

But in late June China passed a controversial, far-reaching national security law in the territory after years of pro-democracy and anti-Beijing protests, which reduced Hong Kong's autonomy and made it easier to punish demonstrators. It criminalises "secession, subversion and collusion with foreign forces".

I think China's aggressive behaviour is going to eventually backfire. I only know from what I've read, but it sounds like there is starting to be a serious exodus of companies and manufacturing from China. Mind you, not necessarily back to North America or Europe, but away from China at any rate. Article from April

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https://www.forbes.com/sites/kenrapoza/2020/04/07/new-data-shows-us-companies-are-definitely-leaving-china/?sh=353b406e40fe

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As a person who frequently travels聽internationally聽I鈥檇 be聽hesitant to directly聽criticize other governments policies online. Things聽you post are basically archived forever and you聽never know who鈥檚 going to聽hold it against you. We westerners聽definitely take our聽freedom of speech for granted.

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haha I like that headline in response to the five eyes.

I'm no fan of China, especially how close my country is to China (both geographically and as a trading partner) but they have a point when it comes to Hong Kong. Sure, it would be nice if they went all the way to the end of the agreement they made with the hand over, but they shouldn't have to. Hong Kong is a part of China and if they don't want a democratic government then the world just has to live with that.

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4 minutes ago, Shmup said:

haha I like that headline in response to the five eyes.

I'm no fan of China, especially how close my country is to China (both geographically and as a trading partner) but they have a point when it comes to Hong Kong. Sure, it would be nice if they went all the way to the end of the agreement they made with the hand over, but they shouldn't have to. Hong Kong is a part of China and if they don't want a democratic government then the world just has to live with that.

I'd say you break an agreement then it becomes null and void and in the case that means the English get HK prior to a new deal; then we can see whether China honours its agreement. (I don't actually think this would happen however I also do not think the world should just accept shitty behaviour by shitty government heads as well).

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25 minutes ago, Nintegageo said:

I'd say you break an agreement then it becomes null and void and in the case that means the English get HK prior to a new deal; then we can see whether China honours its agreement. (I don't actually think this would happen however I also do not think the world should just accept shitty behaviour by shitty government heads as well).

Unless my history is wrong, I was under the impression that HK belongs to China, the British took it over in the Opium Wars on a 99 year lease from China and in the 90's the UK handed it back with the two systems approach. Why does it matter if they break an agreement when it is their own country? Countries break agreements all the time with other countries.

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9 minutes ago, Shmup said:

Why does it matter if they break an agreement when it is their own country? Countries break agreements all the time with other countries.

So what I know regarding this issue is via my best bud whose dad fled HK as the Chinese government was taking their shit, so there is some bias surely. My understanding is that HK didn't want to go back to China and only did so due to the two system approach. When that is broken then HK could say screw this, then we don't honour our deal and we leave. I dunno how to answer that other than saying it does matter and those other countries shouldn't do that shit as well.

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2 hours ago, Shmup said:

Unless my history is wrong, I was under the impression that HK belongs to China, the British took it over in the Opium Wars on a 99 year lease from China and in the 90's the UK handed it back with the two systems approach. Why does it matter if they break an agreement when it is their own country? Countries break agreements all the time with other countries.

Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula were ceded directly to Britain way back when (the island at the end of the first Opium War and the Peninsula at the end of the Second Opium War).聽 The New Territories were what聽was leased to them by China in 1898.聽 Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula would have been very difficult (likely impossible) for the British to maintain if supplies聽 were cut off from the New Territories - the Hong Kong airport was also there.聽 The British therefore just recognized the inevitable and relinquished control of the whole kit and kaboodle to China.

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33 minutes ago, Tabonga said:

Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula were ceded directly to Britain way back when (the island at the end of the first Opium War and the Peninsula at the end of the Second Opium War).聽 The New Territories were what聽was leased to them by China in 1898.聽 Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula would have been very difficult (likely impossible) for the British to maintain if supplies聽 were cut off from the New Territories - the Hong Kong airport was also there.聽 The British therefore just recognized the inevitable and relinquished control of the whole kit and kaboodle to China.

Thanks Tabonga for clarity on the exact terms. I wasn鈥檛 100% sure on the details.

I can sympathise with the HK people, I鈥檇 be unhappy to have my freedoms changed too. Especially because it has spanned over two generations.聽

But at the end of the day there is another side to this story and that is the Chinese side involving the Opium Wars. They want back what is there鈥檚 and don鈥檛 feel the West should tell them what to do with their country affairs.

Which is exactly what a Western country would tell an Asian country if the roles were reversed.聽

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452993201_Screenshotfrom2020-11-2014-59-05.png.65b27d100f6f005c482322326569006e.png

Here's some reading about Taiwan

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-34729538

There is disagreement and confusion about what Taiwan is, and even what it should be called.

China regards Taiwan as a breakaway province which it has vowed to retake, by force if necessary. But Taiwan's leaders say it is clearly much more than a province, arguing that it is a sovereign state.

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17 hours ago, phart010 said:

As a person who frequently travels聽internationally聽I鈥檇 be聽hesitant to directly聽criticize other governments policies online. Things聽you post are basically archived forever and you聽never know who鈥檚 going to聽hold it against you. We westerners聽definitely take our聽freedom of speech for granted.

Fortunately I live in the USA and have the right to criticize my own government, politicians, people, and yes other governments. Personally, I don't plan to ever visit a state which could throw me in jail for just criticizing their government. And you might argue "yeah well there are lots of countries like that" and I won't disagree with you, I'll just never visit them and I'm perfectly fine with that.

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3 hours ago, avatar! said:

Fortunately I live in the USA and have the right to criticize my own government, politicians, people, and yes other governments. Personally, I don't plan to ever visit a state which could throw me in jail for just criticizing their government. And you might argue "yeah well there are lots of countries like that" and I won't disagree with you, I'll just never visit them and I'm perfectly fine with that.

That鈥檚 a perfectly valid way of going about things. I also value freedom of speech in the USA.聽But that鈥檚 a freedom extended by the US government for protection from the US government.

聽When your in other countries you have to play by their rules. I find more value in my freedom to safely visit a large variety of places and the ability to enjoy beautiful landscapes and聽historical monuments than the ability to criticize governments for issues that don鈥檛 affect me.

Edited by phart010
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59 minutes ago, phart010 said:

That鈥檚 a perfectly valid way of going about things. I also value freedom of speech in the USA.聽But that鈥檚 a freedom extended by the US government for protection from the US government.

聽When your in other countries you have to play by their rules. I find more value in my freedom to safely visit a large variety of places and the ability to enjoy beautiful landscapes and聽historical monuments than the ability to criticize governments for issues that don鈥檛 affect me.

I have to disagree. Freedom of speech is a universal right, and is part of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as noted by the UN.

1722037523_Screenshotfrom2020-11-2020-01-17.png.0e8d4202d7787f4d969ef992b2235487.png

https://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/

https://www.un.org/en/chronicle/article/freedom-expression-fundamental-human-right

I absolutely disagree with the notion of "in other countries you have to play by their rules" when "their rules" violate basic human rights. In which case you simply do NOT visit nor patronize those countries.

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1 hour ago, phart010 said:

That鈥檚 a perfectly valid way of going about things. I also value freedom of speech in the USA.聽But that鈥檚 a freedom extended by the US government for protection from the US government.

聽When your in other countries you have to play by their rules. I find more value in my freedom to safely visit a large variety of places and the ability to enjoy beautiful landscapes and聽historical monuments than the ability to criticize governments for issues that don鈥檛 affect me.

That seems like a very un-libertarian stance to me.聽

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ModeratorPosted
22 hours ago, phart010 said:

As a person who frequently travels聽internationally聽I鈥檇 be聽hesitant to directly聽criticize other governments policies online. Things聽you post are basically archived forever and you聽never know who鈥檚 going to聽hold it against you. We westerners聽definitely take our聽freedom of speech for granted.

I鈥檓 the same way, as I have to do business in some of those countries as well.聽

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2 hours ago, avatar! said:

I have to disagree. Freedom of speech is a universal right, and is part of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as noted by the UN.

1722037523_Screenshotfrom2020-11-2020-01-17.png.0e8d4202d7787f4d969ef992b2235487.png

https://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/

https://www.un.org/en/chronicle/article/freedom-expression-fundamental-human-right

I absolutely disagree with the notion of "in other countries you have to play by their rules" when "their rules" violate basic human rights. In which case you simply do NOT visit nor patronize those countries.

Who gets to decide what is a universal human right and what is not? What if some countries don鈥檛 agree with what other countries have concluded? Who is right

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1 minute ago, Gloves said:

Uh oh...

image.png

Yup. It's why, when it really comes down to it, USA, Russia and China can basically do whatever they want, and as much as they finger wag each other, none of them can actually DO anything about it.

Give back Crimea.

No.

Okay.

Give back Hong Kong.

No.

Okay.

Don't invade Taiwan.

No.

Oh Fuck.聽馃槶

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