Sunday, October 20, 2019

The Hong Kong Protests Fit The Definition Of A Fascist Movement

As I’ve watched the videos of masked young men in Hong Kong brutally attacking people for not agreeing with their pro-capitalist agenda, I haven’t been able to help thinking of every time in history where fascism and normalized reactionary violence have taken root. The Hong Kong protesters have taken off their masks of progressive populism and revealed themselves and their backers for what they are: right-wing ideologues who are eager to use the tools of fascism, including its brazenly violent aspects, to crush those who stand in the way of capitalist power.

What other conclusion could be made upon seeing the routine public beatings, displays of American far-right symbols like Pepe the Frog, and open embrace of American rightist politicians that the Hong Kong protesters have engaged in? Protesters haven’t bloodily assaulted non-aggressive people out of self-defense. The demonstrators haven’t just displayed Pepe; they’ve outright praised Donald Trump while holding up American flags, clearly demonstrating their sympathy with American nationalistic and fascistic political affiliations. Protest leader Joshua Wong has known exactly what he’s doing when he’s met with Marco Rubio, the neoconservative senator who’s strategically spread lies to advance Washington’s Venezuela regime change project. The words and actions of these people repeatedly prove the inescapable fact that this year, Hong Kong has experienced a violent public intimidation campaign by fascists who align with the U.S./NATO empire.

It’s appropriate to call the protesters fascists because what they’ve participated in perfectly fits the historical definition of fascism: a development where the capitalist class maintains its own power by stoking reactionary sentiments which rally the petty bourgeois sections of society around stamping out political dissent. Fascist propaganda campaigns usually start with the invoking of vague but culturally resonant nostalgia for a nation’s past; demagogues
promise that if people try to “Make Germany great again,” or to “Make America great again,” or to “Make Hong Kong British again,” living conditions will improve and the nation will have honor.

From there, the fanatical crowds start to form. Disaffected people, often young men wearing matching pieces of clothing, gather in public spaces and display the movement’s agenda for restored national glory. Their rhetoric is intentionally vague, with lofty words like “freedom” and “independence” often being used. But for them, it always comes back to the idea that society’s ills are caused by some insidious force-like the Chinese Communist Party and its supporters-which must be driven out.

Under this rationale, those who’ve bought into the movement’s line feel justified in carrying out violence against their demonized opponents. It becomes a pattern for crowds of these super-patriots to beat up people with differing views. Public humiliation can become one of the tactics of the fascist mobs, such as when the Hong Kong protesters shine lights in front of the faces of their bloodied victims to make them feel exposed and vulnerable. At a certain point-like when a Hong Kong protester was found to have created a homemade bomb last week-the violence ratchets up to a level that would have previously been unthinkable. 

The essential element in the efforts of the fascists is to create a sense of terror among their opponents, something that the Hong Kong protesters have accomplished very effectively; a Hong Kong resident identified as Mr. Edmond has reported in an interview that “If someone publicly disagrees with the protesters, they get beaten. They managed to silence people. People come here, to this wonderful [Tai Kwun] art center, and if they are from Beijing, they are now hiding their identity. It is because they are scared.”

The leaders of fascist movements are always bourgeois or petty bourgeois figures who seek to defend the stability of the capitalist order. In Hong Kong’s case, capitalist interests have come under threat amid the emerging potential for Hong Kong’s real estate tycoons to be arrested for corruption and to have their assets nationalized, as well as the approaching prospect of the Chinese Communist Party taking control over the island. The recent decline of American global power has also been a factor behind the decision of the CIA, in coordination with its front group the National Endowment for Democracy, to fund anti-Chinese groups in Hong Kong and to use agitation propaganda to incite Hong Kongers to riot.

Joshua Wong, a 23-year-old politician from a middle class upbringing whose rise as an anti-China crusader was encouraged by his surroundings in Hong Kong’s capitalistic culture, has made the perfect designated ringleader for the CIA to use in its fascist destabilization effort. He and his movement are paralleled by Juan Guaido and the right-wing Venezuelan opposition, which manufactured political violence at the behest of the Trump administration earlier this year in their efforts to oust the Chavista government.

Like the Hong Kong protesters, the members of the Venezuelan opposition have been corralled into taking out their frustrations with society onto socialists. And in both cases, the fascists haven’t cared that the source of their country’s problems is actually capitalism, or that most of the people in Hong Kong and Venezuela respectively don’t oppose the CCP or the Chavista movement. These two reactionary factions, encouraged by a sense of national superiority and the backing of the West, are so sure in their cause that they’re willing to tear their societies apart over it.

“Fascist” is how to basically describe every opposition group that the U.S. uses to try to overthrow regime change target countries. The CIA has long employed far-right groups to help overthrow socialist countries, and the U.S. has supported fascist dictators like Pinochet numerous times in order to stop the spread of communism. So there’s no doubt that the U.S. will soon promote fascist movements in additional countries. The next location where Hong Kong-type fascism will likely emerge is Taiwan, which the West urgently desires to stop from being absorbed by China. 

It’s virtually guaranteed that in the coming years, we’ll be hearing about “pro-democracy” protests in Taiwan, ones which will also reveal their fascist nature by turning violent and by promoting reactionary sentiments. When the U.S. carries out its planned regime change mission in socialist Bolivia, we can also expect to see fascist mobs terrorizing Bolivian public spaces in the name of “freedom.”

Recognizing the Hong Kong protests and similar U.S.-backed right-wing movements as fascist is an excellent way to avoid being fooled by imperialist propaganda. What’s happening in Hong Kong is a prelude to the violent measures that the capitalist class will use to try to crush the resurgent global socialist movement in the coming years, and we socialists must take note from it on what we’ll need to defend ourselves from.

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