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Intriguing Liar Martin Lee and His Historic Embarrassment

posted 16 May 2019, 11:06 by Hong Kong Independence Party

As the relationship between Hong Kong and China become increasingly complicated and fraught with antagonism, and when the locals in Hong Kong have developed strong skeptical attitude to the conventional pan-democrats and activism since the failure of 2014 Umbrella Revolution, Hong Kong sees the rise of the historical atmosphere --- the historical retrospect and studies on Hong Kong politics since the 1982 Anglo -Sino negotiation. In response to this atmosphere, the organizations both with and without political affiliation, and the Facebook pages as to reviewing the old newspaper and archives emerge, such as Recall Hong Kong (世代懺悔錄:香港前途考古札記), and Decoding Hong Kong's History (香港前途研究計劃). There is an excerpt from the introduction of Recall Hong Kong: “I grew up experiencing the negotiations on Hong Kong future, the transfer of sovereignty, and over the past decades witnessed the CCP reneging on its promise. Not only did the entire generation not fight to resist, but also lost its memory and had been repeatedly deceived. Given the collapse of the homeland, I can do nothing but still want to rearrange the collective memory and deepen my self-observation.” 


The main skeptical view among the anti-Beijing new generation is that the pan-democrats had been ridiculously hooraying the “democratic reunification”, pinned their hope on “one country two systems”, and paid their trust to the CCP. Under the growing pressure of the accusation of “Communist espionage”, the leader of pan-democrats Martin Lee replied: “It has been three decades since June Forth Incident. I did not expect the CCP would take the way backward and become more and more tyrannical. But the problem is we simply had no choice. The then British Hong Kong government already officially determined that it would not let Hong Kong to be an independent country. Pan-democrats only have one option ‘One country two systems’. Under this circumstance, what we could do was to hope for the real democratic election in Hong Kong. I trusted in the CCP. I believed China will keep adherent to its own promise stated in the international treaty --- Sino-British Joint Declaration. Chine now go against the basic law, ‘one country two systems’ and continuously intervene Hong Kong autonomous affairs, which is leading to ‘one country one system’. Unfortunately, I did not see this coming.” It is felt that Martin’s reply is emetic and hypercritical. Recall Hong Kong immediately responded by reminding of the episode of Hong Kong Connection on 13th July 1989: Martin Lee was deeply convinced Hong Kong good future was in the hand of Deng Xiaoping. Hong Kong people held a very high expectation of Deng. In 1984, the 35th anniversary of the PRC nation-building, Deng’s popularity was sky-high. There was a lady interviewee said: “I wish Deng would live to over a hundred years, stay alive after 1997…we hope Deng must not have any trouble.”


Martin Lee certainly takes through his hat by shunting the full responsibility onto Britain and asserted the UK is fully blameworthy as if he was totally innocent. But history tells the fact which presented the other way around.


In accordance with the confidential record to the minute of Cabinet on 10th March 1983, Margret Thatcher referred to the fact that the vast majority of people in the colony wanted Britain to retain the ruling of Hong Kong whilst “the Chinese leaders in Hong Kong did not tell the truth to China”. Until Sep 1982, Margret Thatcher had always been insistent on British continuous ruling over Hong Kong: “the Chinese were seeking to make cession of sovereignty over Hong Kong by the British Government a precondition for starting the talks; and there was evidence to suggest that the Chinese Government was intending to use the occasion of a meeting of the Chinese Peoples Congress in June 1983 to announce that its intentions for Hong Kong were to assume full sovereignty over the whole colony, which would thereafter be administered as a special autonomous region of China. This would be disastrous for confidence in Hong Kong. Unless satisfactory arrangements could be negotiated with China for maintaining British administration along with the present legal and economic system in Hong Kong, the economy of the colony would collapse.”


It is vitally important and interesting to note that as early as before Margret Thatcher’s confession of her determination to stay in Hong Kong in the Cabinet, Meeting Point, the leading “democratic party” in Hong Kong stirring the people to the “democratic unification movement”, was formed in 1983. It was the most popular political party advocating the irredentism in Hong Kong. Its victory in alliance with the United Democrats in the 1991 LegCo election was a manifest evidence.


Leo Francis Goodstadt, an economist based in Hong Kong emphasized China officiously enlisted the local parties and elites’ support. In return, they would also be endorsed by China. “In the months before the Joint Declaration, China's leaders made a sustained effort to cultivate community support for their position although Hong Kong was denied any formal role in the negotiations. ‘Pro-democracy’ activists (notably Meeting Point) were endorsed after rallying early in support of Hong Kong's return to China…whose leaders came to enjoy the closest access to the Chinese leadership.” Subsequently, Martin Lee and Szeto Wah, who were the party leader of United Democrats and the icons of Hong Kong democracy irredentism movement, also joined the Hong Kong Basic Law Drafting Committee.


Compared with Gibraltar’s experience, it is nonsense to say Hong Kong had no choice simply because Britain made the final decision. While British government officially excluded Gibraltar from the British-Spanish negotiation, the local government held an unlawful referendum to deny the legitimacy of the negotiation without consulting the locals. The overwhelming majority of Gibraltarians voted against the negotiation and decided to stay British. The then British Prime minister denounced the referendum as “eccentric” and would not recognize it. Spain also said the referendum was unlawful. However, it turned out that the referendum result was respected. Britain was at an embarrassing place to be a colonizer. It is necessary for the locals to voice out and convey the clear message and willing to the global society what they really want. Under the trend of decolonization, Britain could not proactively do anything.


In 1983 Hong Kong, the then Governor Edward Youde, in quite the same way the British leaders dealing with Gibraltar, opposed the idea of holding a referendum.

Sir Sze-yuen Chung proposed that a referendum should be held. He even claimed that he would organize a referendum himself if Britain did not take action, but little attention and support from the local elites and community were paid to his appeal. Therefore, it is arbitrary to assert that Hong Kong had no choice but the option of handover.