Politics is a bitch and it doesn’t discriminate democracy or communism. And if politics can happens in office or among siblings, its tentacles can spread as far as you can imagine. In politics, nothing happens by accident thus as expected, the recent Hong Kong pro-democracy fiasco has invited quite a number of theories, or rather conspiracy theories. As part of SOP (standard operating procedure), Beijing has accused the West (read: America) as the troublemaker who sponsors the students’ uprising.
Of course, the West denies it. The war of words is expected to continue between Beijing and the West. It will be like the recent battles between Israel and Palestine – you send some homemade missiles to my garden, and I’ll send some made-in-U.S. missiles into your house. Yesterday, Laura Cha Shih May-lung, chairwoman of the Hong Kong Financial Services Development Council, made a controversial statement – “American slaves were liberated in 1861 but did not get voting rights until 107 years later. So why can’t Hong Kong wait for a while?”
Now, there’s a new theory about the shocking police force and triads’ brutalities, as released by Hong Kong Frontline magazine. Based on reports published by the Epoch Times and insider sources from Beijing, the magazine claims that the sudden cruelty unleashed by CEO C.Y. Leung basically has nothing to do with the West but was part of internal political power struggles within CCP (Chinese Communist Party) itself.
Apparently, there’re two factions or teams in the CCP – Jiang Zemin faction versus Xi Jinping faction. Jiang Zemin was former CCP’s general secretary from 1989-2002. He climbed to the most powerful position after the bloody Tiananmen Square protest of 1989, replacing Zhao Ziyang. Although retired as the head of the ruling Communist Party in 2002 and as president in 2003, he retained enormous influence through a network of allies in the party, the military and business.
If a web can be illustrated as a privileged interest groups or cronies, then 88-year-old Jiang Zemin is the spider in the middle of it. And Jiang Zemin was highly corrupted during his rule. Enter hero President Xi Jinping’s anticorruption-cum-political-purge campaign. Make no mistake about it. Xi Jinping wasn’t really interested about cleaning up China’s corruption problem. He was just want to consolidate his own power.
Ever since Jiang’s successor, Hu Jintao, retired from his position as Party leader in 2012, Jiang essentially lost his power over the control of CCP. President Xi Jinping has already successfully removed some of Jiang Zemin’s powerful cronies, including the powerful Bo Xilai, who was imprisoned. So, the senior Jiang and his cronies have a grand plan – use Hong Kong as the battlefield to get rid of President Xi Jinping.
In the name of power, the plot was to re-create another Tiananmen Square Massacre – in Hong Kong. Blood has to be spilled, and pro-democracy Hong Kongers are part of the collateral damage, unfortunately. Then, Jiang faction can put the blames on Xi JinPing and forces him out of corridors of power. Hong Kong was chosen as the battleground simply because it’s the financial hub with tons of foreigners’ interest established.
Billionaire Zeng Qinghong, a close ally of Jiang Zemin, who was in charge of Hong Kong affairs, appointed C.Y. Leung as Hong Kong Chief Executive in 2012. Interestingly, Mr Leung is also an underground CCP member aligned to Jiang. The objective was to make Xi Jinping another Zhao Ziyang, who lost power due to Tiananmen Square crisis. Needless to say, C.Y. Leung unleashed not only pepper spray and tear gas, but also triad members to cause maximum damage.
Heck, they even use Hong Kong OCTB – Organised Crime and Triad Bureau – to beat protester Ken Tsang Kin Chiu. In case you have been wondering the clumsiness of OCTB being caught so easily by TVB in a video clip, it could be a deliberate drama after all. Obviously, the purpose was to create bloodshed so that military could be called in to do, well, more damages.
Surprisingly, on September 28, an angry Xi was reportedly refused the request of Jiang faction member, Zhang Dejiang, to clear the protest sites by force. Xi said he would not deploy the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) garrison in Hong Kong, and let Leung deal with the situation instead. But Leung sent mafia and underground CCP supporters, disguised as pro-democracy and anti-democracy protesters, purposely started fights with each other.
In retaliation, Xi Jinping sent secret agents to Hong Kong to expose the identities and backgrounds of Jiang faction members there. It’s not known if Mr Leung still think highly of himself but he would be the sacrificial lamb in this Jiang-vs-Xi political chessboard game. Xi deliberately insists on having Leung in charge so that he can be held responsible. As we speak, Xi is receiving more reports about Leung’s connection with police force and mafia members.
Jiang faction has also infiltrated into Hong Kong media industry. Thugs were deployed to harass clients of the Hong Kong Epoch Times, vandalized the house gate of Next Media boss Jimmy Lai, and brutally attacked former Ming Pao chief editor Kevin Lau. Both Apple Daily and am730 have had advertisements withdrawn. The chairman and founder of Hong Kong Television Network Limited, Ricky Wong Wai-kay, was not granted a free-to-air TV license, thanks to chief Leung.
On Oct. 11, hundreds of pro-CCP protesters began blocking the entrance to the building of Apple Daily’s parent company Next Media, stopping the distribution of the newspaper. Although Apple Daily obtained a restraining order from the High Court on Oct. 14., the pro-CCP protesters – paid by Jiang cronies – continued to stop the truck from delivering papers and cursed at the Apple Daily cameraman while police were present.
While Jiang’s influential tentacles in Hong Kong are busy provoking and harassing pro-democracy protesters using mafia and controlled media, Xi’s faction is racing against time in exposing more of Jiang’s corrupt network. Two days ago on Oct. 29 alone, automobile group FAW Auto and Shanghai Municipal Electric Power Company, both related to Jiang were investigated for corruption.
Beside Bo Xilai, Xu Caihou and Zhou Yongkang were two high ranking proteges of Jiang that have been terminated. After 300 of Zhou’s relatives and cronies were arrested, Xi Jinping administration had seized about 90 billion yuan (US$14.5 billion; £9 billion; RM47.7 billion) from them. In fact, ever since Xi’s campaign started, a whopping 60,000 high level CCP officials had fallen. That speaks volumes about the depth of corruption in China.
The problem that Xi is facing in his anti-corruption campaign – there’s always a bigger tiger after a big tiger has been arrested and prosecuted. Of course, the biggest tiger is none other than the Father of Corruption – Jiang Zemin himself. It’s a matter of time before Xi and Jiang will meet, face to face. For now, it’s a balancing act, as the saying goes – fight corruption too little and destroy the country; fight it too much and destroy the (CCP) Party.
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