REVIEW | China, Hong Kong, and the British Response (POI Podcasts #1)
This, the first episode of POI podcasts, saw us set our sights on Hong Kong and the associated British response. This debate first started with a fantastic article by Max Anderson, but over the duration of the podcast, we took a deeper dive into this and surrounding issues. Max was joined by Evan Saunders of the Labour team, and Fletcher Kipps of the Conservatives.
Starting with a pan-party agreement that China is in breach of the ‘one country, two systems’ contract, the three debaters really got to grips with the question, “What is Britain’s next move?” Should Britain use economic or political leverage? Should Britain be only cooperative with China? Or perhaps, international pressure is required?
The relevant British response was also dissected: Boris Johnson has made an offer of citizenship for almost 3 million Hongkongers. However, this may help the Hongkongese, but not Hong Kong. Is this merely a first step in our helping of Hong Kong, or just an empty signal?
Also contained within this debate is asking: what moves are even available to Britain? There is no guarantee that the Chinese, frankly, care about what Britain would have to say. British power has decreased steadily over the past number of decades. So perhaps it can only merely watch.
There was plenty of disagreement as to what the response should be. However, all noted the importance of the preservation of human rights. Can we, without hypocrisy, respond to the American protests, but ignore the calls from the East?
As the host, I found this debate very fruitful. Critical discussion pushed the conversation to cover a lot of important ground in just a half-hour.
We invite you to join us for both this week and those coming. You can catch the podcast here
Written by, Alexander Dennis
Hello, I’m Alexander Dennis, and I am going into my third undergraduate year at the University of Exeter. I study Politics & International Relations, with a possible year abroad hanging in the balance. My particular interest in politics really started in early 2016: yes, it was ‘Brexit’. I was at once intrigued, and confused, by something so critical. From that baptism, I have become somewhat addicted to political discussion, intrigued by issues ranging from drugs policy to taxation. So I followed my nose: I applied for a degree in the subject.