'Model China': Why the Dragon is rewriting school textbooks in Hong Kong

Edited By: Palki Sharma WION
New Delhi Published: Aug 21, 2020, 10:15 PM(IST)

Hong Kong Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

China wants to teach young kids in Hong Kong the fear of China, fear of law, fear of protest.

In 2012, parents in Hong Kong made their children tear up textbooks of "model China" as booklets sought to brainwash young minds. Beijing had one aim - to turn Hong Kongers into loyal subjects of China.

Eight years ago, 90,000 parents and teenagers had marched in protest. In 2020, however, they cannot as protests have been banned. China is again re-writing textbooks in Hong Kong openly and legitimately with the over-arching power of the national security law.

This time if the parents say it leads to brainwash, they shall be put behind bars. The phrase separation of power has been removed, enshrining China as the sole ruler. Now, China says basic law will protect the press. Photographs of the Lennon Wall have been deleted which was one of the major artworks of the Umbrella Movement.

China wants to teach young kids in Hong Kong the fear of China, fear of law, fear of protest. China admits it is turning Hong Kong schools into correctional facilities to restore the Chinese identity. Beijing believes the earlier textbooks created radicals like Joshua Wong and Nathan Law. Now, China wants to nip dissent in the bud.

However, China has failed to edit the newspaper Apple Daily with its owner Jimmy Lai being tried under the new security law. Lai believes China is sucking out the city's last-remaining freedom.

"It's the oxygen is getting thin, and we are all choking, but when we're choking we are still taking care of each other and keep resisting and keep fighting for our rule of law and freedom," Lai said.

Despite being slapped with fresh charges, Jimmy Lai has hit out at China exposing the crackdown on civil servants and businessmen.

US President Donald Trump is all praises for him.

"I feel bad for him because I hear he's a good person. I don't know him but I hear he's a good person, obviously a very brave person," Trump said.

Jimmy Lai says China is running a state censorship factory banning books in libraries and re-writing school curriculum. He says it is like a scene out of George Orwell's dystopian novel 1984. Some Hong Kongers are comparing China to the Nazis and how Adolf Hitler's schools brainwashed young people. Just like the Nazis and Mao, Xi's China is hunting down professors and teachers who don't comply.

At least two prominent lecturers have been fired and at this rate words like human rights and civil disobedience will slip out of the tongue first, then, out of the minds. China's cultural revolution in Hong Kong has begun.

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