Hong Kong: Next Door and Eight Years Away

Hong Kong demands greater freedom for China -- and itself

The inhabitants of Hong Kong usually reserve their deepest passions for business, not politics. But last week, in the largest and most emotional outburst ever seen in the British colony, more than 500,000 demonstrators marched through Hong Kong's narrow streets, waving pro-democracy banners and singing anthems like We Shall Overcome. Including the spectators who cheered and applauded, an estimated 1 million people, one-sixth of Hong Kong's populace, turned out to proclaim their support for the embattled students in China.

The unprecedented outcry reflected Hong Kong's growing anxiety over its return to China in 1997. A sleek modern city on the South...

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