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The Umbrella Extremist

The minister did not disappoint to pose for a photo with Wong, who was insinuated, and to assure him of his support, after the “picture” for Wong had already rolled out the red carpet. Of course, the Tagesschau had to keep up. We know them about global conflicts, the editorial team ARD-currently reports either not at all or grossly shortened and superficially, thus mostly misleading.

The causes and beneficiaries of the conflicts are usually heard next to nothing. Although the editorial team claims to give an overview of the world’s most important events of the day on a daily basis, it cannot do justice to this for reasons of space. She has to make a choice and should do so “according to journalistic principles”. What emerges, however, all too often turns out to be a compulsive conformtoe with the federal government and a abandonment of independent thinking. The insincere handling of news from the war and conflict regions of our world, as well as with the German foreign policy related to it, is a single major journalistic failure.

For weeks, the German public has been painting with tendentious reports about the hustle and bustle in Hong Kong. The information core of these messages is always the same and substantially modest. The “message” for the supposedly uncritical audience:

The Communists in Beijing are using massive police force to suppress the people fighting for freedom and democracy in the Hong Kong special zone. Help is needed.

This agitation is constantly repeated in variations. The viewer is convinced that Hong Kong is really about civil freedom and that the communist government in Beijing is itself to blame and deserve its role as the hate object of the “international community”.

The effectiveness of this propaganda is not only methodically tested in itself, but also guaranteed because the soil on which it falls is fertile: have we not acquired the certainty in decades of practiced self-righteousness that is a model democracy in our country and we can best judge what is the situation with the freedoms in other countries? We Germans now have the right to do so in urine or DNA, right?

Despite massive excesses of violence, looting and incendiary “demonstrators”, despite the temporary occupation of the international airport and central transport routes, despite countless injuries and millions of serious property damage on the island, the Tagesschau euphemistic and trivializing:

Tens of thousands of people in Hong Kong have not been deterred (…) to take to the streets against the government (…) Police used water cannon and tear gas, and some protesters threw Molotov cocktails and stones at police officers. (…) Some demonstrators used cones, metal barriers and trash cans to erect road barriers (…) Democracy activists arrested (…)

Compare this disgusting suada to the way the Tagesschau deals with the demonstrations in Germany: news about peace demonstrations is usually completely omitted/misplaced, and when demonstrators make riots — on May 1st in the Hamburg’s Schanzenviertel or Berlin — then police operations against them are given as a matter of course, even if they also degenerate into violence.

There is no risk of confusion in purely linguistic and formal terms: the protests against the G20 summit in Hamburg regularly referred to “riots” and no longer just “demonstrations”. Scenes of violence were described as “civil war-like conditions”, which the perpetrators referred to as “criminals”, called “marauding and rioting groups” as such — and not consecrated as “democracy activists”.

Another essential difference: The reporting on the Hamburg scene focused on the devotional description of the violence. Of course, nothing was learned about the social causes of the outbreak of violence and the motives of the rioters. Unlike Hong Kong, there were no interviews with their supposed leaders, nor special reports on “G20 democracy activists.” About the Ramstein demonstrations, for example, ARD-currently spread roaring silence anyway. This is striking.

Amazing: Between 1 and 15 September 2019, the editorial team broadcast 101 articles in words and films about the unrest in Hong Kong. By comparison, Ukraine has offered less than a quarter of that amount over the same period, even though the country is only two hours’ flight from Berlin, constantly causing instability and aggression in Eastern Europe.

Heckling: Ukraine? If anything, information from there, but full can of the same. Ready-made goods as in the summer sale: Sage and write 14 times at the beginning of September there was the individual message from this war zone about the prisoner exchange between Russia and Ukraine. Nothing else. Nor is there anything about the serious setback for the “Minsk Agreement”, although this was negotiated under Chancellor Merkel’s participation, is the basis of multinational peace efforts and directly affects German interests.

ARD-aktuell did not say a word about the fact that the new Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pristeiko explicitly refused at a conference in Kiev to implement the constitutional amendment agreed in Minsk in favor of the Autonomists in eastern Ukraine. The foundation of the entire agreement has been omitted without the Tagesschau strapping and mediating it.

In the face of such grotesque journalistic failure, the ARD’s self-portrait seems like a brazen attempt to sell its audience for stupidity:

Every day, ARD-aktuell discusses and wrestles with which events are reported and to what extent. Making messages always means weighting messages and making a selection, because you have to make a selection from thousands of messages. ARD-aktuell is aware of this fact and we deal with it as responsibly as we can.

The author of this real satire did not retreat into a desert in a heary garb, so that no one would have to look into the face of anyman from now on. No, as the Peter principle dictates, he has made it to the director of an ARD station. Back to ARD-aktuell about Hong Kong. The striking “call for democracy and free elections” is, of course, better suited to “journalism replacement” than a thorough and analytically accurate depiction of the objective causes of the protest.

Moreover, the self-restraint of the Tagesschau to the superficial and formal requires less backbone and capacity for conflict than the objective confrontation with the social problems in Hong Kong. Which Tagesschau editor would like to say that he has animated the television people to recognize structurally similar problems in Germany and to react to them as in Hong Kong? Molotov cocktails in response to massive rent increases and poverty pensions, airport occupations as a protest against low wages and child poverty? But, of course, “that’s not possible,” as Chancellor Merkel says, and as is why the daily newspaper editorial team tends to remain silent.

Hong Kong, the eight million city, is a social hotspot like comparable metropolitan areas in the West. It is not poverty, corruption or the institutional deficits of the Hong Kong government that are the ground for the unrest here, but extremely high living costs and clearly visible class differences. The stark opposite of rich and poor is the problem, not the lack of individual freedom.

The contrast in concrete terms is that private housing is highly sought after in Hong Kong, as in all metropolitan areas worldwide. Population growth and influx from mainland China have exacerbated the housing shortage over the years. It no longer seems to be solvable if only the means of the so-called “free market” are available. The boom in so-called micro-apartments is no longer a relief. In the meantime, sleeping machines are already on offer, tubes arranged in honeycombs, in which just a narrow mattress fits, per honeycomb often only a single washing place and toilet are available.

Who voluntarily lives in such an urgent tightness? But for a mini-studio of 15 square meters you pay at least 1,000 euros rent. That’s almost half of an average gross monthly income of $2,150. In this tense situation, any influx from mainland China to Hong Kong is perceived as a threat. The mainland Chinese, who have been immigrated since 1997, and now exploited “work animals”, are regarded by many Hong Kongers as “locusts”. Against this background, separatist efforts are explained, which have been giving the protests their dangerous swirl for weeks. They have little to do with democratic deficits, but much to do with capitalist profiteering:

(…) the desire for freedom and call for democracy, which has been brought into play time and again, certainly spring from a very considerable degree of Western wishful thinking. Because democracy alone is not enough and no one has yet got a roof over their heads through free elections.

Hong Kong is already falling behind in competition with other special economic zones of the People’s Republic, as is shown by the direct comparison to Shenzhen on the mainland, just a few kilometres away. The median income there is already around 2,930 US dollars, i.e. 780 US dollars above that in Hong Kong.

In Shenzhen alone, income growth was +9.1 percent between January and September this year. The economic performance of metropolises such as Singapore and Hong Kong is less impressive compared to Shenzhen. In Hong Kong, income is almost stagnating, while prices and rents are rising. In the urgent confines of the island, labor-intensive industrial settlements are no longer possible, but in Shenzhen on the mainland there is plenty of room for it. In other words, Hong Kong can no longer compete economically with the mainland, it is a phasing-out model.

The solution to the problem is obvious: cooperation and, finally, the obvious integration of the economically and financial centres of Shenzhen, Hong Kong and Macau, which are so directly adjacent. There are corresponding impulses from Beijing. If they were followed, it would significantly strengthen the geopolitical position of the People’s Republic of China and underline the superiority of its economic model. It explains that the UNITED States and its followers are trying to evade such a development. Where the terms of the treaty with Great Britain on the return of Hong Kong to China do not give anything away, you have to have the umbrellas taken out.

This is not very difficult. Even as a banking, stock exchange and service centre, Hong Kong cannot offer unlimited jobs and careers. The first to see the coming end of the interesting perspective are students and young academics. Accordingly, they also form the tribe of the protest movement.

The socially difficult situation in which Hong Kong has managed itself, despite Beijing’s multibillion-dollar investment aid — the 55-kilometre-long pier to the mainland is just one example of the extensive support from there is no different. but only in their sharpness and potential for violence from the circumstances, for example in New York, or Munich.

Is there a comprehensible journalistic reason to ignore these unquestionable facts, to continue to swear by a “democracy movement” in Hong Kong and from ultimately responsible “enemies of liberty” in Beijing, as the Daily show? In the meantime, it conceals the capitalist imbalances in Germany, instead of naming the similarity/equality of the problems here and there?

Pointing the finger at others distracts from one’s own grievances. The West does not let its systemic media, such as the Tagesschau, pull over China out of concern for legal assets such as freedom and democracy. Rather, every occasion and every means seems right to separate anti-Chinese propaganda. After all, it goes against the enemy of the system, against the Communists, and they must not be credited with having managed to free a billion people from hunger and to open up real prospects of prosperity to them, which is now the envy of the world.

The growth rate of China’s gross domestic product in 2017 was already more than two-thirds higher than that of the US. The Gini coefficient for China, which describes the distribution of incomes, shows successful steps towards fairer conditions. Values in the US and Europe, on the other hand, document a widening income gap, a permanent deepening of the gap between rich and poor.

Is there a comprehensible journalistic reason to ignore these unquestionable facts, to continue to swear by a “democracy movement” in Hong Kong and from ultimately responsible “enemies of liberty” in Beijing, as the Daily show? In the meantime, it conceals the capitalist imbalances in Germany, instead of naming the similarity/equality of the problems here and there?

Pointing the finger at others distracts from one’s own grievances. The West does not let its systemic media, such as the Tagesschau, pull over China out of concern for legal assets such as freedom and democracy. Rather, every occasion and every means seems right to separate anti-Chinese propaganda. After all, it is against the enemy of the system, against the Communists; they must not be credited with having managed to rid a billion people of hunger and to give them real prospects of prosperity, which are now the envy of the world.

The growth rate of China’s gross domestic product in 2017 was already more than two-thirds higher than that of the US. The Gini coefficient for China, which describes the distribution of incomes, shows successful steps towards fairer conditions. Values in the US and Europe, on the other hand, document a widening income gap, a permanent deepening of the gap between rich and poor.

Because economic and political advancement are inseparable, the People’s Republic of China is seen as the main adversary that breaks the hegemony of the US and Western capitalism. So it is not surprising that Donald Trump, for his rude style, has found support in trying to squeeze concessions from the Chinese. “Successful Communists” are a phenomenon that does not fit the self-image of the West, to its supposedly superior form of society. Before confronting the systemic question, he prefers to support all attempts to create images of enemies, disinformation and baseless denunciation.

The Tagesschau also conceals key facts in its semi-news from Hong Kong. The fact that violent opposition forces devastated the parliament building and eventually even destroyed vital parts of the city’s infrastructure (including the traffic control system) was only conveyed in a hint:

(…) hundreds of demonstrators had stormed the parliament building to express their anger (…)

Violent perpetrators eventually even occupied Hong Kong International Airport. Imagine something similar at Frankfurt Airport, consider how the police and state protection would react to it and what would then be left on the stack in what tones in the Tagesschau and subsequent “ARD focal points”. But in their reports on Hong Kong, ARD recently highlighted the police’s actions:

With pepper spray against barricades

It was said that the perpetrators of violence were trivialized as “protesters” and “activists” who “fought” with the police.

The Tagesschau editors generously renounced the mandatory classification of the events: in Germany, incidents such as those in Hong Kong would be prosecuted as serious breach of the peace , violent offenders would be treated as criminals and would have been treated with prison sentences of up to ten years. Anyone who, like the Tagesschau, takes a double standard and orients himself on the obviously crippled legal consciousness of a running boy of the US governor Grenell, is meant our foreign minister NATO Troll Heiko Maas, proves professional failure.

Of course, the Tagesschau did not investigate whether British and US intelligence agencies or non-governmental organizations, NGOs lubmetled from black coffers, had their hands in the riots. The bourgeois press discussed this suspicion, however, even if it usually dismissed it as a conspiracy theory. Although not yet provable, everything points to interference from foreign circles: at the height of the Hong Kong events, two key opposition politicians appeared in the US, to whom the former senior adviser to the Trump and Bush administrations, Christian Whiton, insured:

Triggering this crisis for the Chinese government (…) is in the national interest of the United States.

According to bourgeois understanding, every revolution needs a leader, a symbolic figure who stands for complex social fractures and makes them “tangible”. Joshua Wong, 22, was chosen. The young man may lack maturity and political foresight, but as a radiator figure he is always good, so he also became a “democracy activist” and “ambassador of the Hong Kong resistance” in the Tagesschau. Similar lightning careers are already familiar to us: from Maidan in Kiev to that of boxing champion Vitali Klitschko, from the Venezuelan Caracas to that of the U.S. hampelman Juan Guado …

Wong had, as I said, been invited to Berlin as a star guest by the creators of the “Bild” at a summer festival. Then he adorned a circle of illustrious guests: Putin foe Mikhail Khodorkovsky, ex-minister and fake dr. jur. Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, US governor and sharpener Richard Grenell, prize boxer Vitali Klitschko, the communist-eater and his local CDU party friends stymied Elmar Brok, his boss Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, the layman, and the Expert wonders:

“White Helmets” chief Raed Al Saleh, experienced in war atrocity propaganda and in the interception of state millions of bribes. Matching the “picture” slogan:

Axel Springer stands behind all the people in the world who fight for freedom.

Where such a bright spotlight shines and so many camera teams are standing, the embodied failure of German diplomacy, Heiko Maas, naturally wanted to be there and also push the pear into the picture. Either he didn’t think that this stupid thing in Beijing had to cause bitterness, or he didn’t care. However, the fact that he also disavowed Chancellor Merkel, who had just promoted the conclusion of eleven major trade agreements in Beijing, should not have increased his standing in either the cabinet or his party, which is obsessed with coalitions.

What did ARD-aktuell make of the scandal? An SWR journalist also heated up the atmosphere on “tagesschau.de” with the demand that Maas and Merkel “should also receive the activist officially” (24). beautiful. A commentator is allowed anything, his freedom to express is protected by our Constitution. Whether the Tagesschau was allowed to allow itself such an agitatory comment, however, is another matter: according to the State Treaty, it is committed to international understanding.

Who is Joshua Wong? Jens Berger describes it on the NachDenkSeiten as a clean breakfast. A welcome guest among the ultra-right US elites, even nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by US Senator Marco Rubio in February 2018. Right-winger Rubio, by the way, has long made an inglorious name for his support for coup plotters in Venezuela, for his anti-human, racist immigration policies and reactionary climate policies. His absurd nomination of Wong, of course, found no place in the offers of the Tagesschau …

Also Wong’s obviously very relaxed relationship with the “White Helmets” was not mentioned. Although there are indications that their interest in Syria is now also directed towards Hong Kong. The BBC reported back in 2014 that the “Oslo Freedom Forum” was a “activist” for a number of Hong Kong erasers.

The forum is one of the most blatant slandereres of the People’s Republic of China and is known for overtaking even Trump and Bolton on the right with its hateful statements. Thor Leonardo Halvorssen Mendoza, chairman of this “Human Rights Association”, declared a few days ago that “China’s dictatorship” has an economic form based on “slavery and unfair practices” and disguises itself as capitalism.

The “greatest tyranny” in the world is that of the Communist Party of China. It is clear that there are similarities between such a nailed demagogue and an extremely indecent Syrian war propagandist. Halvorssen had already invited Raed Al Saleh, the head of the “White Helmets” in Syria, as one of the main speakers to his forum in 2017.

To avoid misinterpretations, the “White Helmets” are a Western-paid propaganda construct with close ties to terrorist groups such as Al-Qaeda and Jahbat Al Nusra, now known as Tahrir Al Sham. In other words, organized swearing, whose obscure boss Saleh did not even allow the US to enter. The then German Foreign Minister Frank Walter Steinmeier, now the honorary head of state, nevertheless seemed honorable enough to be lubricated with seven million euros from Berlin.

What do the leaders of the Hong Kong opposition have to do with the propaganda force of Syrian terrorists? The mutual interest becomes more understandable when one remembers that both have written on the banner of the violent “regime change” and both go to the US canary. However, the 12 million viewers of the Tagesschau do not know anything about this. They must swallow the “freedom and democracy” shambles that the ARD-aktuell waiters serve them, for a fee, notabene. Albrecht Müller, the editor of the NachdenkPages, summed up the scandal:

When the majority of politicians and the media omit important information and conceal it, a distorted picture of reality emerges. The often systematic concealment is therefore an effective method of opinion-making.

How efficient the opinion-making is, how strongly it also shapes our image of the Hong Kong protests, is shown by the fact that we do not even know exactly how the protests in Hong Kong were triggered, at least not from the Tagesschau. Summary:

Hong Kong has had few extradition agreements with other countries since independence from Britain, allowing criminals to be deported there. Not even with China. That should be changed. The reason for this was understandable and had nothing to do with loyalty to Beijing at all. The backstory, writes the Berliner “Tagesspiegel”, reads “like a ‘Tatort’-Krimi”:

In early 2018, Hong Kong-born Chen Tong-jia and his girlfriend Pan Xiao-ying vacationed in Taiwan. There he noticed that his girlfriend was pregnant by another man. He killed her, stole her money and credit cards and returned to Hong Kong. Taiwanese police and the young woman’s father found out the murder. Taiwan demanded the extradition of the alleged killer.

Hong Kong’s city government wanted to allow this, but it could not: Taiwan is also officially considered by Hong Kong, as by Beijing, as part of the People’s Republic of China. The father of the dead could only get Chen to be sentenced to 29 months in prison in Hong Kong for credit card fraud. Chen had paid off his debts in Hong Kong in cold blood with the credit cards of the murdered. He is now to be released from custody in October.

Conclusion: For the freedom of a highly murderous crook, the “umbrella revolutionaries” in Hong Kong have been lured to the streets. Now they are regarded by the Tagesschau as heroes of democracy and not as deplorable seduced, who can no longer cope with their difficult living conditions and bleak future prospects.