That opposition camp members in Hong Kong colluded with foreign forces in their attempts to seize power in the city isn’t news anymore. Numerous leaked documents have exposed again and again what went on behind the scenes at many political events in the city in recent years.
Still, the latest revelations about such collusion — in a recently published book written by Cheung Tat-ming, a former senior assistant to Joseph Cheng Yu-shek, convener of the Alliance for True Democracy, have raised many eyebrows.
According to Cheung’s accounts, the National Endowment for Democracy of the United States and its subsidiary, the National Democratic Institute, have frequently advised the Alliance for True Democracy and Power of Democracy, another political organization co-founded by Cheng, on how to organize activities to rally support for the illegal “Occupy Central” campaign and have also bankrolled many of these activities.
NED also financially supported the New School for Democracy, which Cheng helped found in 2011 and where he served as a director. NSD also served as a training base for student leaders and core members of the “Occupy” movement, according to Cheung.
Cheung’s accounts augment media reports, published in March 2015, that NSD had invited some veteran street protesters, associated with Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party, to lecture “Occupy” leaders on US political scientist Gene Sharp’s “color revolution” strategy.
Cheung was tasked to handle paperwork for the Alliance for True Democracy. He helped file meeting minutes and financial transaction records of the organization when he worked with Cheng as a senior assistant to the latter. The information Cheung acquired in the process is convincing.
Cheng denied — in a statement issued on Thursday — that the Alliance for True Democracy had received money from NDI. This was somewhat expected. Members of the opposition camp have, without fail, issued a blanket denial to any accusations of collusion with foreign forces. Cheung’s revelations with firsthand information have undoubtedly dealt the camp a serious blow.
The latest revelations also highlight the urgency of Hong Kong enacting national security legislation according to Article 23 of the Basic Law sooner rather than later. They also explain why members of the opposition camp vehemently oppose such legislation — despite acknowledging that it is the special administrative region’s constitutional duty to do so.
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