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NYT Opinion Piece Defends China’s Authoritarian Actions in Hong Kong

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The New York Times is receiving massive criticism Thursday for publishing an opinion piece titled “Hong Kong Is China, Like It or Not” in which the author defends China’s brutal measures to suppress the millions of Hong Kongers who were protesting the continual loss of their human rights, democracy, and autonomy.

Author Regina Ip, who is a member of the pro-Beijing New People’s Party and a legislator on Hong Kong’s Executive Council, writes that “something had to be done” about the million-person protests against a proposed—now withdrawn—security law that would allow the Chinese government to extradite Hong Kong criminal on the mainland and tried by China’s undemocratic justice system.

“Foreign governments should not benchmark what happens in Hong Kong against standards that prevail in Western countries,” she writes. “They should benchmark Hong Kong against the rest of China.”

She defends the government’s crackdown on anti-government protesters, saying, “The West tends to glorify these people as defenders of Hong Kong’s freedoms, but they have done great harm to the city by going against its constitutional order and stirring up chaos and disaffection toward our motherland.”

In the same op-ed, she also defended a national security law that severely restricted freedom of speech and expression in Hong Kong, saying, “The scale and frequency of antigovernment protests has now subsided — thanks to a national security law for Hong Kong promulgated in Beijing on June 30.”

The New York Times last month published a lengthy piece by Jin Wu and Elaine Yu, “What You Can No Longer Say in Hong Kong,” detailing what Hong Kongers are no longer allowed to say under the aforementioned national security law and how it is affecting the city. After the law was passed on June 30, thousands of pro-democracy protesters challenged it by carrying signs with criminalized phrases, such as “Liberate Hong Kong, Revolution of Our Time.”

All over the internet, people are criticizing the article and the New York Times for even publishing this article defending China’s human rights abuses in Hong Kong by an avidly pro-Beijing politician.

“So,” conservative commentator Ben Shapiro tweets to his 3.1 million followers, “any of those woke staffers who care so much about human rights going to demand the resignation of the op-ed editor who is now printing open Chinese propaganda cheering the complete tyrannical takeover of Hong Kong?”

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) took the opportunity to criticize the piece too, tweeting, “Get a load of this headline. @nytimes publishing a piece of shameless #China propaganda defending Beijing’s violent & lawless crackdown in #HongKong. What next from NYT, “Like it or not, Uighurs are prisoners”?”

Other individuals made comparisons to when many commentators criticized the New York Times for publishing a June 3 op-ed by Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) in which he said he was in favor of using the military to quell violence at protests, asking them if they would condemn Ip’s piece, too.

“Why is it okay to run this, but not okay to run an op-ed by Tom Cotton?” Reason editor Robby Soave said in a tweet, sharing Ip’s piece.

The New York Times and Ip have yet to respond to the controversy.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Border Patrol Council President concerned over ‘influx’ of military-aged Chinese men crossing the southern border

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According to U.S. Customs and Border Patrol data Border Patrol agents detained over 30,000 Chinese individuals for illegally crossing the border from January to November 2023, sparking concern.

Just The News reports that National Border Patrol Council President Brandon Judd on Wednesday said the United States should be incredibly concerned by the influx of military-aged Chinese men coming across the southern border.

“Why are we seeing this influx?” Judd asked on the “Just the News, No Noise” TV show. “At best, they’re just coming here for a better life or for a better job. At worse, they’re coming here to be part of the Chinese government, and that’s what scares me an awful lot.”

“We know that the Chinese have huge gangs here in the United States, and they control certain parts of our country,” he later said. “They control the drug flow. They control the prostitution. They control everything that’s illegal in certain portions of the country. We have to look into that. It’s very important that we understand why we are having so many people from China, especially military-aged men, from China.”

“I don’t want to cause mass hysteria where United States citizens are violent towards people from China,” Judd said. “However, we have to … allow the intelligence community to do their job. We’ve got to let law enforcement do their job and look into these individuals.”

Many Chinese immigrants are leaving due to economic conditions in China and its strict lockdowns, Yahoo News reported.

“Again, at best, they’re here for a better life,” Judd said. “At worst, they’re here to be part of the Chinese government to infiltrate our own country.”

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