The Press: Blackout in Hong Kong

When the Chinese mainland fell to the Communists in 1949, the British crown colony of Hong Kong overnight became the biggest news center in the Far East. To British colonial officials, the influx of newsmen was a nuisance. They gave out as little information as possible about any untoward "incidents." Hong Kong, they felt, was a conspicuous testing ground for the dream of peaceful coexistence, and the fewer inflammatory news stories that got out the better.

Last week, after Chinese Communist planes shot down a British airliner (see NATIONAL AFFAIRS), Britain's officials in Hong Kong characteristically blacked out all news of the...

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