HONG KONG—Students at Hong Kong University (HKU) hung up new posters condemning the Chinese communist regime on Sept. 17.
Students on campus were busy with their studies, but judging by the number of posters and memos on the walls, they have not forgotten about the ongoing protests.
Since June, Hong Kong has been embroiled in mass protests that began in opposition to a now-withdrawn extradition bill. But protesters have since broadened their demands to include wider calls for democracy. The extradition bill would have allowed people in Hong Kong to be transferred to the mainland for trial in courts controlled by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
“I just hope the government will listen to us for once,” said Miles, a student at HKU that gave only his first name. “Just withdraw[ing] the bill doesn’t make the cut.”
Hong Kong citizens’ main slogan throughout weeks of protests has been “liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times.” But on Tuesday, HKU students coined a new slogan: “God will destroy the Chinese Communist Party.”
“The Communist Party thinks they are the god of the world, they think they are the king of China,” said Miles. “They don’t care about the citizens, the national people.”
Many protesters have compared the Chinese communist regime to the Nazis of early 20th century Germany, calling the regime “Chinazis.”
“Chinazis just [don’t] understand why do we come out to protest,” said Miles. “They just keep calling us cockroaches and they don’t care about us, they don’t care about the teenagers,” referring to Chinese state media reports that vilify protesters.
Jaden, another student who only gave his first name, also said that he despises the Chinese regime.
“What they are doing is really close to Nazis right [now],” said Jaden. “We don’t want this to happen anymore in this modern society.”
Born with the freedoms that were afforded to the territory before it reverted to Chinese sovereignty in 1997, many young students in Hong Kong are not willing to see such freedoms be eroded as Beijing extends its influence more deeply into city affairs.
“We are born to be free, right?” said Jaden. “Then we should not be contained by the CCP any longer.”
“And that’s why we want to be an example,” he said. “Not to Hong Kong, not to China, but to the whole world.”
Protests are now in their 15th consecutive week, and are likely to continue, as protesters said they will continue to call for the city government to grant them free elections and justice against what they perceive as police brutality.
Local police have been repeatedly criticized for using excessive force to disperse and subdue protesters, including by unleashing crowd control equipment such as tear gas and rubber bullets in ways that violate international norms, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has said.
Tommy, an HKU student who only gave his first name, said he thinks countries around the world—including mainland China—might follow Hongkongers’ example and stand up to authoritarianism.
“We think that if we free Hong Kong and succeed to be free of the rule of CCP, I think the other cities in China will follow us and so that the CCP will be eliminated,” he said.