Is Cathay Pacific now on the “wrong side of history” for suspending a pilot involved in the Hong Kong pro democracy protests?
By: Ringo Bones
Even though the Beijing government is still wary of doing a repeat of the June 4, 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre, there has been a consensus in the so-called “liberal West” that Cathay Pacific may be on the “wrong side of history” when the management immediately suspended one of its pilots involved in the pro democracy protests in Hong Kong. The political fallout of such action might have been Cathay Pacific’s stocks falling in value by as much as 4-percent back in Monday, August 12, 2019. As being one of the airline companies in the Far East providing a balance of economy and world class service, the relative ease on how it bowed to mainland Chinese pressure now tarnishes the company’s reputation – at least from the perspective of the “liberal West”.
Even though the Hong Kong pro democracy protests that now includes calls for universal suffrage and calls for guaranteed autonomy originally started as a protest against a rather draconian extradition crime bill drafted by the Beijing government that allows mainland Chinese authorities to extradite capital crime suspects from Hong Kong, Macau and even Taiwan. The controversial extradition bill would probably have been passes unnoticed and would probably have passed below the Hong Kong resident’s radar if the Beijing government had behaved reasonably – as in by not arresting or causing the disappearances of the Causeway Bay Books bookstore owners near the end of 2015. And let’s not forget the ongoing Uyghur crackdown and sending them to internment camps / forced cultural reeducation camps by the Beijing government – a form of “cultural genocide” that the Trump Administration seems to have turned a blind eye over this very important issue.
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