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View Poll Results: Should Hong Kong be back under British Rule?
Yes: God Save the Queen 11 26.19%
No: I love comunism 2 4.76%
No: We Should be indipendent 18 42.86%
No: I have other ideas 6 14.29%
I realy don't care! And anyway China will always rule Hong Kong as it is a stubborn country! 5 11.90%
Voters: 42. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-03-2014, 01:44 AM
 
6,726 posts, read 6,607,688 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger Beer View Post
Hong Kong's situation from the beginning was completely different from Singapore, East Timor, etc.

It was initially agreed that China would allow the British, and subsequently the Portuguese to build their city, but it was always understood that it belonged to China.

They basically gave them a LEASE to be there, and to have their own sovereign conditions, for a set number of years.

Hong Kong and Macau didn't suddenly just become 'independent' from the UK and Portugal respectively. They in essense went BACK to CHINA..which was the initial agreement way back 150+ years ago.
Hong Kong is a little different.

China (Qing government) lost the Opium War to Britain and then ceded Hong Kong Island to Britain in the Treaty of Nanking. Later China lost another war and leased (not ceded) Kowloon and New Territory to Britain for 99 years (supposed to end in 1997).
In 1982, Deng Xiaoping and Thatcher agreed that the whole Hong Kong area should be handed back to China in 1997 and so on.

The Treaty of Nanking is an extremely important event in Chinese history, and students in China are required to memorize its content. In short, it is the beginning of a series of "national shames". Besides ceding Hong Kong Island, China also paid a huge amount of silver dollars, and was forced to open some harbors for the British.

Last edited by Bettafish; 10-03-2014 at 02:04 AM..
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Old 10-03-2014, 04:07 AM
 
Location: Taipei
6,775 posts, read 5,124,525 times
Reputation: 4566
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mack Knife View Post
There was no independence under British rule. There were no free elections either. The British installed whatever government they wanted and there was no say when it came time for new faces.

What the heck is everyone talking about?

The people living in Hong Kong never got to say what British governor was put in place. History people, history.

BTW, HK is part of China. Here we go, sticking our noses in yet another affair that isn't out business.
Yeah you're right, there was no democracy whatsoever in HK under British rule, but they lived in a rule of law and relatively less insufferable society. However, under Chinese rule, the housing price is as high as it could get because of Chinese real estate speculator, the press freedom has worsened, HK parents need to fight with Chinese parents for kindergartens and powdered milk because the latter are usually well aware how awful their food quality is, and brainwashing education was almost implemented. None of these happened when Britain was ruling HK, so it's not unreasonable that HKers are fighting for democracy under Chinese rule as things have gone really bad.


And yes both HK and Macau were leased by British Empire and Portugal, as opposed to Taiwan(was ceded to Japan). However both of them were on the list of non-self-governing territories of UN, so they were initially gonna be independent powers under UN's assistance, however PRC demanded the two of them to be removed from the list as they were afraid that both places would exercise their rights of self-determination. Singapore, on the other hand, was on the list then successfully gained independence.
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Old 10-03-2014, 05:03 AM
 
5,823 posts, read 10,156,163 times
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13 votes for "independence"! I can't believe it! it is the new fad : every damn territory wants to have its "independence" now (under US "umbrella"-no pun intended-of course).
I for myself wish that Pimlico in London, Montmartre in Paris, Christiania in Kopenhagen and Kreuzberg in Berlin become independent and that Sealand and Seborga ask to be UN members.
(and if you want I'l explain to you why the comparison with Singapore doesn't hold).
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Old 10-03-2014, 09:00 AM
Status: "I hate living in Georgia!!" (set 12 days ago)
 
48,141 posts, read 45,495,400 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pigeonhole View Post
13 votes for "independence"! I can't believe it! it is the new fad : every damn territory wants to have its "independence" now (under US "umbrella"-no pun intended-of course).
I for myself wish that Pimlico in London, Montmartre in Paris, Christiania in Kopenhagen and Kreuzberg in Berlin become independent and that Sealand and Seborga ask to be UN members.
(and if you want I'l explain to you why the comparison with Singapore doesn't hold).
14 votes now. Can you blame people for wanting independence?
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Old 10-03-2014, 09:10 AM
 
448 posts, read 499,665 times
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Actually, HK Island and Kowloon, New Territories and Macau were given to Britain and Portugal under different conditions in different treaties.

Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and Taiwan were ceded to Britain and Japan by the Qing government after losing wars. There were no terms to allow China to get them back. Taiwan became part of ROC after the Japanese surrender. New Territories, however, was the only region, which was leased for 99 years. The talks on the expiration of the lease led to the agreement between PRC and UK, and later Portugal, on the return of the territories in 1997 and 1999.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger Beer View Post
Hong Kong's situation from the beginning was completely different from Singapore, East Timor, etc.

It was initially agreed that China would allow the British, and subsequently the Portuguese to build their city, but it was always understood that it belonged to China.

They basically gave them a LEASE to be there, and to have their own sovereign conditions, for a set number of years.

Hong Kong and Macau didn't suddenly just become 'independent' from the UK and Portugal respectively. They in essense went BACK to CHINA..which was the initial agreement way back 150+ years ago.
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Old 10-03-2014, 09:18 AM
 
448 posts, read 499,665 times
Reputation: 170
Kowloon and Stonecutter Island were ceded as well.
New Territories was leased for 99 years from 1898 to 30 June 1997. There was no consultation with the local residents. Small wars all over New Territories broke out when the British began occupation, the villagers lost in a week.

Agreement was signed in 1984.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettafish View Post
Hong Kong is a little different.

China (Qing government) lost the Opium War to Britain and then ceded Hong Kong Island to Britain in the Treaty of Nanking. Later China lost another war and leased (not ceded) Kowloon and New Territory to Britain for 99 years (supposed to end in 1997).
In 1982, Deng Xiaoping and Thatcher agreed that the whole Hong Kong area should be handed back to China in 1997 and so on.

The Treaty of Nanking is an extremely important event in Chinese history, and students in China are required to memorize its content. In short, it is the beginning of a series of "national shames". Besides ceding Hong Kong Island, China also paid a huge amount of silver dollars, and was forced to open some harbors for the British.
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Old 10-03-2014, 10:13 AM
 
6,726 posts, read 6,607,688 times
Reputation: 2386
Quote:
Originally Posted by lokeung) View Post
Kowloon and Stonecutter Island were ceded as well.
New Territories was leased for 99 years from 1898 to 30 June 1997. There was no consultation with the local residents. Small wars all over New Territories broke out when the British began occupation, the villagers lost in a week.

Agreement was signed in 1984.
Yes your information is accurate. I did not check the details.
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Old 10-03-2014, 10:31 AM
 
Location: Portsmouth, UK/Swanage, UK
2,178 posts, read 1,953,851 times
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Question for anyone that knew HK then? After WW2 to 1997 would Hong Kongers still have freedom of speech and free media? Even if they didn't vote? Just wondering cus if Hong Kongers wanted democracy, then surely they could have just asked?
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Old 10-03-2014, 11:31 AM
 
Location: Fort Collins, USA
1,477 posts, read 2,370,744 times
Reputation: 1809
The idea of one country controlling an enclave that is physically surrounded by another country, makes no sense to me. Historically this has only happened when a stronger country forces it's will on a weaker country. Usually, when the power dynamics change, the formerly weaker country takes back their territory (witness the former French and Portuguese enclaves in India after that country gained it's independence). So no, Hong Kong should not revert to the UK. The UK wouldn't want it and China (now the stronger country) definitely wouldn't allow it. I feel the same way about Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. The US should raze the facilities and give the territory back to Cuba.
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Old 10-03-2014, 11:35 AM
 
501 posts, read 461,912 times
Reputation: 748
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jas182 View Post
Question for anyone that knew HK then? After WW2 to 1997 would Hong Kongers still have freedom of speech and free media? Even if they didn't vote? Just wondering cus if Hong Kongers wanted democracy, then surely they could have just asked?
Hong Kong has always legally had free speech and an independent judiciary, and limited democracy (voting for some members of the legislature directly, some indirectly, some are "elected" by special interest groups).

In practice the British were fairly autocratic too in the beginning of their rule, but by the mid-80s Hong Kong was a pretty free and open place. Yes, people still could not vote for all of their leaders, but they could freely petition or protest the government and to be quite honest, things were good for most of the people in HK so they were content with their government even though they didn't have real democracy.

Now people are seeing that freedom of the press is being eroded, the Beijing government has explicitly stated that the judiciary is subservient to the CCP and not truly independent, about 10 years ago the government tried to pass a very strict and overreaching "security" bill which would criminalize some behavior and freedoms that HK has always had, and then again about 5 years ago the government tried to pass some new education requirements that focused a lot on "praising and loving China" that seemed like brainwashing to a lot of the people. And now the "free" elections that HK was promised in 2017 have been replaced with "you are free to choose from these 3 candidates we give you" which is not free at all.

Combine this with all the other problems HK is facing now (most of which are certainly not China's fault btw, and are problems that many cities or countries are facing) like income inequality, skyrocketing housing costs, overcrowding, pollution, etc. and the people want a government that seems responsive to their concerns. CY Leung is quite aloof and a bit elitist, so he just seems to shrug and ignore the people which just reinforces people's desire to be able to choose their own leaders. The government in Beijing is the very definition of aloof.

And yes some of this is just people being overly nostalgic for the good-ole-days when HK was rich and life was easy and China was the place for cheap labor and second or third wives :-P Those days will never come back and some people just need to accept that, but that doesn't mean they shouldn't fight to have more influence over their local politics. All people should feel like they have a voice in how their lives are run.

And HK people have been very successful in previous protests. Public protest blocked the propose security law mentioned above, as well as the propose national education reforms. Public protests and rallies led to what little democracy Hong Kong did have under the British, and some of the people they did elect (like Martin Lee or Leung Kwok-hung) were very confrontational against the current government leadership (even under the British government)--the Chinese government would very much like to prohibit these kinds of guys getting elected.

Both the British and the Chinese government have been promising HK full democracy for nearly 35 years now, and they continually fail to meet those promises. At some point you just say enough is enough.

Sorry for the long post, I just think a lot of people are over-simplifying the situation with things like "british government good, Chinese government bad" or "HK people are just spoiled". It's much more nuanced than that.
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