This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com.
- North Korean rocket launch a humiliating failure
- Tensions grow between Hong Kong and mainland China
- Syria regime slaughter down on truce, as Friday protests loom
- United Nations may send observers to Syria
North Korean rocket launch a humiliating failure
North Korea’s test launch of a long-range missile was an immediate failure, as it crashed into the sea shortly after takeoff. The failure is particularly humiliating, as the launch coincides with the 100th birthday celebrations of the founder of North Korea, Kim Il-sung, whose grandson, Kim Jong-un, now rules. As the launch was a clear violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions, the Security Council will hold an emergency session on Friday, “to decide the next step” following the launch. Hankyoreh (Seoul)
Tensions grow between Hong Kong and mainland China
We recently posted a story about how Hong Kong residents go around singing songs that describe mainland Chinese tourists as uncouth “locusts.” Tensions are growing in Hong Kong over Beijing attempts to assert greater control over Hong Kong. Hong Kongers fear loss of academic freedom in colleges and lost of freedom of the press. A primary cause of the recent anger among Hong Kong residents is the use of Hong Kong’s resources by mainlanders. Birth tourism is one of the most visible examples of this. Large numbers of mainland women travel to Hong Kong to give birth so they can receive better medical care and obtain a Hong Kong identification for their child, entitling the child to Hong Kong’s resources, including public education. Last year, approximately 40,000 mainland women gave birth in Hong Kong, which caused hospital beds to be in short supply.
From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, the significance of this growing split between Hong Kong and Beijing is that it’s expected to grow. I’ve been writing for several years that China is overdue for a new national civil war. (See “China approaches Civil War” from 2005.) China’s history is full of massive civil war rebellions, such as the White Lotus Rebellion (1796-1805) and the Taiping Rebellion (1852-1869), killing millions or tens of millions of people. These occur at regular intervals, with each new one occurring at about the time that the survivors of the preceding one die off. The last of these rebellions was Mao’s Communist Revolution (1934-49) civil war, and now it’s time for the next one. During Mao’s Communist Revolution, anyone who could find a way to reach Hong Kong could escape to Formosa (Taiwan) or to the West. So it appears that Hong Kong may once again play a central role in a Chinese crisis civil war. Jamestown
Syria regime slaughter down on truce, as Friday protests loom
Syria’s regime on Thursday claimed to have “proved” that everything it says is credible, claiming that there is a “truce” and the violence has stopped, and indeed the regime killed only 20 or so people on Thursday, down from the usual 100 per day. However, all the tanks, soldiers and snipers are still in the streets, ready to reengage at any time. The test will come on Friday, when people will pour out of mosques into the streets after midday prayers and begin demonstrations and protests. The regime claims that peaceful protests are permitted, but adds that all such protests must be registered and approved in advance, something that isn’t going to happen. So the world will be watching to see what happens on Friday. Bloomberg
United Nations may send observers to Syria
A proposed U.S.-drafted United Nations Security Council resolution would authorize deployment of up to 30 unarmed inspectors to monitor Syrian compliance with ceasefire. The draft also would have the council condemn “widespread, systematic, and gross violations of human rights … by the Syrian authorities (and urge that) those responsible for human rights violations shall be held accountable.” Russia and China have vetoed similar resolutions in the past. Reuters