A tale of two bleeding cities
Unlike Srinagar in Kashmir, I am certain there is no likelihood of a bloody crackdown on protesters, in mainland China, as we watched in Hong Kong this indeed, was the Tiananmen 2.0. And, why won't this take place? Simple. Because it's not worth it!
Beijing has clearly identified the 'colour revolution', with provocation inbuilt in the protests with the NED (National Endowment for Democracy), excelling as CIA soft, facilitating the sprawl of fifth columnists even in the civil service.
Let's not fret there are other components, of course. The fact that Hong Kong residents have the right to be angry about what is a de facto, Tycoon Club autocracy, controlling every nook and cranny of the economy.
There is a consensus that local backlash against 'the invasion of the mainlanders et al PRC', would be combustible, and catch fire--far too quickly! And so shall the relentless cultural war of Cantonese vs. Beijing, north vs. south, province vs. political centre.
What these protests have accelerated-- is Beijing's conviction that Hong Kong is not worth its trust, as a key node in China's massive integrationdevelopment project. Beijing invested no less than $18.8 billion to build the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge, as part of the Greater Bay Area, to integrate Hong Kong with the mainland, and really, not to snub it. As it is, a bunch of useful dumbasses, at least has graphically proven they don't deserve any sort of preferential treatment anymore.
The big story in Hong Kong is not even the savage, counter-productive protests (imagine if this was in France, where Macron's army is actually maiming and even killing Gilets Jaunes/Yellow Vests). The big story is the rot consuming HSBC - which has all the makings of the new Deutsche Bank scandal.
Sources reveal that HSBC holds $2.6 trillion in assets, in the former colony, and an intergalactic 'horde' of cockroaches in their basement- asking serious questions about money laundering, and dodgy deals operated by global turbo-capitalist elites.
I strongly believe that towards the end, Hong Kong will be left to its own internally corroding devices - slowly degrading to its final tawdry status as a Chinese Disneyland, with a Western facade. Shanghai is already in the process of being boosted as China's top financial center. And Shenzhen already is the top high-tech hub. Hong Kong will be just an afterthought. This was planned that way!
While China has identified 'Occupy Hong Kong', as a mere Western-instilled and instrumentalized plot- India, for its part, decided to go for Full Occupation Kashmir.
Curfew that was imposed earlier this month, all across the Kashmir valley. Internet was cut off. All Kashmiri politicians were rounded up and arrested. In fact all Kashmiris- loyalists (to India), nationalists, secessionists, independentists, apolitical - were branded as The Enemy. Welcome to Indian 'democracy', the largest in the world, under the crypto-fascist Hindutva. Is there a better adjective to describe this?
'Jammu and Kashmir', as we knew it, does not exist anymore. These are now two distinct entities. Geologically spectacular Ladakh will be administered directly by New Delhi. Blowback is guaranteed. Resistance committees are already springing up.
In Kashmir, blowback will be even bigger because there will be no elections anytime soon. New Delhi does not want that kind of nuisance--as in dealing with legitimate representatives. It wants full control, period.
BJP minions in India scream that Pakistan 'illegally' designated Gilgit-Baltistan- or the Northern Areas - as a federally administered area. There is certainly, nothing illegal about it. I was in Gilgit-Baltistan, a few years ago, and could hear people murmuring about the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Nobody ever had complained about any 'illegality'.
Pakistan officially has said it 'will exercise all possible options to counter (India's) illegal steps' in Kashmir. That has been extremely diplomatic. Imran Khan does not want confrontation--even as he knows full well, Modi is pandering to Hindutva fanatics, aiming to turn a Muslim-majority province into a Hindu-majority province. In the long run though, something inevitable is bound to emerge--fragmented, as a guerrilla war or as a united front.
Like it or not: Welcome to the new Kashmiri 'Intifada'. We do have an underlying need to understand the subtle concepts,that influence the lives of a billion people in this planet!
The author is a former educator based in Chicago