Hong Kong (22/5). Global tensions between the United States and China continue to play out on the streets of Hong Kong. Hong Kong Police arrests of demonstrators increasing finds bomb making materials in greater numbers.
“We are concerned about the growing numbers of rioters use violence to achieve their means”, said a senior officer. “Recent arrests shows a worrying trend. Arrested rioters are younger, and willing to cause harm to fellow citizen without concern for safety or bombs causing a loss of life.”, he added.
Experts on Marxist Autonomes, as the Black Block are also known in Europe, warned in the later part of 2019 extremists groups are operating in Hong Kong since 2014. “As so often official were in denial of the intelligence dots available.”, Dr Susan Wolters said, “if it talks like an extremists, acts like an extremists, plans like an extremist is is not an democrat. It still is amazing authorities in Asia think only Islamists can produce terrorism. Everyone forgets the German extremists were the grandfathers of modern day terrorism.”
A view shared by expert from the University of Indonesia and Singapore alike. Failed leftist ideologies are chic again, and like the 1970’s terror movement, the German left which gave rise to the Red Army Faction, Red Brigades and other leftist extremist forming the nucleus of the Marxist Autonome in Indonesia and Black Block terror cells in Hong Kong.
‘As the saying goes, if you don’t listen to history you are doomed to repeat it, Asia has forgotten how leftist terrorism acts.’, said Dr Alfons Winkler, a Singapore based expert on leftist extremism in Asia. ‘Hong Kong officials knew that they had a problem but did not want to belief the Black Block is a extremist movement. History repeat itself. The new Marxist left skillfully rebuild its networks, association with NGOs and adopted sophisticated media narrative that exploits current trends.’, he said.
‘But underneath it all, these vanguard groups for decades executed beachheads in targeted countries.’ He added that the civil society movement and the lack of intellectual capability permitted these groups setting up beachheads without scrutiny.
‘How many police or intelligence officials have the understanding of Marxism, or leftist terrorism?’, senior journalist Eka Taruna asked. ‘None. Like 9/11 the groups operate in the underground, poised for time and strike when the groundwork is laid. Chinese officials warned Hong Kong Police repeatedly of terrorist like groups operate in Hong Kong. Leftist terrorism in Asia is a reality today.’, she added.
Dr Winkler said, ‘The renowned extremist expert J.M. Berger once wrote that ‘group radicalization precedes individual radicalization’. Hong Kong and the May 2019 Jakarta riots, the unrest in Papua, Chile and elsewhere is a process of societal radicalization. It is structured, organized and led.’
He rejects the notion the riots in Jakarta and Hong Kong last year are leaderless. ‘This is plainly speaking, rubbish, and lacks the evidence in Hong Kong and Indonesia.’
What is come?
With the Legislative Council election approaching Hong Kong in 2020 experts pose the question is what will the extremist do if the power grab by the radicals fail? Taken the evolutionary approach the extremists cell are expected to surface and challenge the administration. The threat of terrorism in Hong Kong is on the rise.
In the past months we seen parcel bombs addressed to the chief of police, IED targeting police officers, bombs targeting the Mass Transit Railway (MTR), a hospital designated to receive COVID-19 patients, court buildings and setting police officers and citizens who reject the extremist visions on fire.
Police arrested and prevented plots of extremists shooting into peaceful protesters in an aim to blame police for the attack. The tactics are identical to Islamic terror groups attacking demonstrations to start sectarian violence. More concerning is the willingness to conduct acts of terrorism without regard of life.
‘Taking the evidence into consideration the question on how many more cells, networks and members exist in Hong Kong, Indonesia or Papua and are they ready to strike?’, Dr Sidhra from the University of Indonesia.