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Chinese Banks Activate Contingency Plans to Prepare For Hong Kong Bank Run

But say they have plenty of cash to deal with demand.

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Chinese banks have activated contingency plans to prepare for a possible bank run by protesters in Hong Kong but say they are confident they can deal with any problems.

As we reported yesterday, activist leader Chen Haotian called on fellow protesters to target Chinese banks by simultaneously withdrawing all their money.

A viral post also appeared on the Hong Kong version of Reddit encouraging demonstrators to withdraw their money and convert it to U.S. dollars in order to sabotage Beijing’s financial autonomy.

In response, Bank of East Asia, DBS, OCBC Wing Hang Bank, and Hang Seng Bank have all reportedly activated contingency plans and are monitoring large withdrawals.

However, the banks, seeking to avoid a panic, all assert that they can deal with any planned bank run, arguing that Chinese New Year season is much worse.

HSBC said it “has sufficient supply of banknotes” to deal with demand.

“I don’t think it will be a problem,” George Leung Siu-kay, an adviser to HSBC, told the South China Morning Post.

OCBC Wing Hang Bank also said that Friday was a “normal banking day” and that no problems were encountered.

Hong Kong residents are allowed to withdraw from HK$20,000 (US$2,548) to HK$40,000 from ATMs.

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China Warns Hong Kong Protesters Will Pay a “Heavy Price” After Trump Signs Bills Backing Demonstrators

Fears of military crackdown intensify.

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Beijing has warned that Hong Kong protesters will pay a “heavy price” after President Donald Trump passed two bills backing the demonstrators.

The Human Rights and Democracy Act will mandate an annual review to check if Hong Kong has retained its autonomy and therefore still qualifies for its special status with the U.S.

A second bill bans the export of tear gas, rubber bullets and stun guns, all of which have been used by Hong Kong riot police against the protesters.

China responded with an op-ed in the Communist Party’s official mouthpiece, the Global Times, which vowed punishment for anyone in Hong Kong seen to be colluding with America.

“One country, two systems” is China’s independent constitutional arrangement and US intervention damages its external environment,” states the piece. “Hong Kong society should be vigilant. To maintain “one country, two systems,” the Chinese mainland and the HKSAR need to work together. Anyone who colludes with external forces to undermine “one country, two systems” must pay a heavy price.”

Rumors of a massive military crackdown by Chinese troops on protesters have been circulating for months, but observers say this could end in disaster for China as it would forever ruin Hong Kong’s status as a global financial hub.

Elsewhere, the Chinese Foreign Ministry directly accused Washington of having “ignored facts” and “blatantly supported violent radicals who oppose the rule of law” in Hong Kong.

Protesters have been on the streets in Hong Kong since June. The demonstrations began as a revolt against an extradition bill but have since blossomed into a widespread rejection of Beijing’s authoritarian rule.

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Kissinger: Coming Conflict Between U.S. and China “Will Be Worse Than World Wars”

Says “catastrophic outcome” is “inevitable” unless two sides sort out their differences.

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Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger warns that a catastrophic conflict between America and China that will be “worse than world wars” is inevitable unless the two sides sort out their differences.

Kissinger made the comments at an event hosted by the National Committee on US China Relations in New York last night.

“We are in a difficult period now. I am confident the leaders on both sides will realise the future of the world depends on the two sides working out solutions and managing the inevitable difficulties,” said Kissinger.

A permanent conflict between Washington And Beijing would be unwinnable and lead to “catastrophic outcome,” he added.

“It’s no longer possible to think that one side can dominate the other…it will be worse than the world wars that ruined European civilisation,” said Kissinger.

The U.S. and China have been embroiled in a trade war since President Trump began imposing tariffs on thousands of Chinese-made products in a bid to end unfair trading practices.

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Obama Photographer Accuses Trump of Staging ISIS Raid Photo

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Steve Watson

Spreads fake news and conspiracy theories instead of congratulations

A photographer who has worked extensively with Barack Obama spread conspiracy theories Sunday regarding a photograph released by the White House of President Trump and numerous officials watching the US Special Operations forces raid that killed ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Pete Souza, Obama’s photographer, implied that the photo showing Trump with Vice President Mike Pence, Defence Secretary Mark T. Esper and US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley, was staged.

Souza’s “evidence” was that some reports suggested the raid began at 3:30pm Washington time, yet the photo timestamp says the image was taken at 17:05:24, local Washington DC time, over 90 minutes later.

But, no. Wrong.

Trump himself stated that “We were pretty much gathered at five o’clock yesterday…the attack started moments after that.”

Souza was forced to issue a follow up tweet backpedaling:

The fake news had already spread, however, with the blue check brigade, media and Democrats ‘outraged’ that Trump was at his golf course at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, and not watching US soldiers conducting the raid.

Others suggested that the photo was fake because there are unplugged network cables:

The conspiracy theory train had already left the station.

The photograph evoked memories of the one Souza himself took featuring Obama and Hillary from the 2011 raid on Osama Bin Laden’s compound. At the time, it too was suggested to have been staged.

While the Washington Post labeled al-Baghdadi as a ‘scholar’, Bloomberg related how the ISIS leader had successfully ‘transformed himself’:

Media and Democrats piled on, some complaining that Trump hadn’t spoken politely or respectfully enough about ISIS:

Some, like journalist Glenn Greenwald, pointed out the grim fascination of watching Democrats deal with the situation:

It should be pointed out that after the Bin Laden raid in 2011, this was Trump’s reaction:

I want to personally congratulate President Obama and the men [and] women of the Armed Forces for a job very well done. I am so proud to see Americans standing shoulder to shoulder, waving the American flag in celebration of this great victory.

We should spend the next several days not debating party politics, but in remembrance of those who lost their lives on 9/11 and those fighting for our freedom. God Bless America.

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