China slaps sanctions on prominent Republicans who scoff, while Chinese flee U.S.
China responded to sanctions imposed on Chinese officials over Hong Kong with sanction on 11 of the most vocal critics of the Chinese Communist regime in the U.S., including Republican U.S. Sens. Marco Rubio (FL), Ted Cruz (TX), Tom Cotton (AK), Josh Hawley (MO) and Pat Toomey (PA), and Republican Rep. Chris Smith (NJ).
The sanctions also included officials at National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, the National Endowment for Democracy, the International Republican Institute, Human Rights Watch and Freedom House.
Like previous measures by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the specific sanctions were non-specified, but presumably include travel bans to China.
The announcement was met by a scoffing editorial from Sen. Tom Cotton, denouncing the CCP.
“These toothless sanctions won’t have much effect on me, but that’s because they were never about me in the first place,” said Cotton on Fox News.com. “They’re meant to scare potential critics of the Chinese Communist Party into shameful silence and even complicity. The message is clear: the Party is always watching and ready to punish its enemies.”
Cotton, however, mentioned the NBA as one target being warned by the sanctions against the GOP.
“Sadly, we know that scare tactics and threats can silence even powerful people,” he added, “especially those who are financially compromised by China. That’s why you won’t see supposedly ‘progressive’ executives and superstars in the NBA denouncing China’s forced labor and other human rights abuses.”
China took this new action against critics in retaliation after the U.S. government imposed sanctions last week over the imposition of a new national security law on Hong Kong. The security law was imposed in violation of several international treaties which gave the island state autonomy from Communist-controlled mainland China.
“On Friday the US announced sanctions on Hong Kong’s chief executive, Carrie Lam, as well as 10 other senior Chinese and Hong Kong officials, freezing any US-based assets and barring travel to the US,” says the UK’s Guardian.
Lam says that she doesn’t like to travel to the U.S. but still had a travel visa to the U.S. as of August 9. Her son, Joshua Lam, is studying at Harvard, but has been missing since late July, and is believed to have returned to Hong Kong, according to RTHK.
To some extent, U.S. sanctions on Chinese are aimed at family members of prominent politicians who enjoy freedoms in Western countries and education opportunities that they couldn’t have in China. This gives them the illusion of being part of a global elite that doesn’t have to follow the rules imposed on ordinary Chinese citizens. That illusion acts as a safety valve amongst the ruling class in China.
By denying the children of CCP members the opportunity to live, study and spend money abroad, it creates more pressure inside the ruling class.
Many are being ordered home right now, quite against their will.
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