Recommendations

See our letters page for the views on the news from SCMP readers
  1. I’m writing in response to the letters titled “Why Modi is not Xi: the Indian leader has the support of the electorate” (January 9). I chose to write after recent events in India, with Delhi police repeatedly used by the government to crack down on any dissent against the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).First, I would like to thank the Post for following up on events in India and publishing detailed articles about the turmoil there, which unfortunately my…
  2. The reaction of Hong Kong Human Rights Monitor director Law Yuk-kai to the possible use of stun guns and net guns by the police to tackle black-clad thugs resisting arrest betrays the organisation’s bias and warped thinking (“Hong Kong police may arm officers with electroshock devices, net guns”, January 15).According to the Post report last week, Law warned of the harmful effects such weapons might have on suspects, adding that these could also help police “mask their brutality”.Perhaps the…
  3. Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor’s latest welfare package is a beacon of hope for the Hong Kong economy, struggling to cope with the effects of the US-China trade war and months of civil unrest (“HK$10 billion welfare package to ‘help more than a million people’ unveiled”, January 18).The package of 10 initiatives is a relief measure for people affected the most by the economic downturn. The social unrest and trade war have dealt a heavy blow to the tourism and service…
  4. Is politics a dirty game? In his notorious book The Prince, Italian Renaissance politician and philosopher Niccolo Machiavelli wrote that immoral behaviour, such as the use of deceit and the murder of innocents, was normal and effective in politics.A ruler must be unvirtuous to maintain his administration, Machiavelli emphasised.The Italian politician Cesare Borgia, an exemplary hero in the eyes of the author and an inspiration for his book, was a political animal whose tactics – deceit, lure…
  5. I write in response to widespread calls to slash the number of mainland Chinese allowed to settle here in Hong Kong from 150 a day, a level which is not being met in the first place (“Cut quota of mainlanders settling in Hong Kong to ease tensions, tycoon urges”, January 12).I would like to point out that, according to government statistics, Hong Kong has one of the lowest birth rates in the region, far below replacement level.These statistics also provide the information that about 130 Hong…
  6. Was it a slap in the face of free trade? In seeming retaliation for comments on Kashmir made by an unapologetic Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad at the UN General Assembly and – later – on a new Indian citizenship law, India has banned imports of refined palm oil from Malaysia.As a consequence of India’s amended trade policy, cost-push inflation and increased food-based inflation can be expected to hit the country.India imports 70 per cent of its edible oils: soya, rapeseed and palm. Palm…
  7. I am always puzzled to read all sorts of reports regarding the Hong Kong police’s so-called excessive use of force on radical protesters or rioters since the unrest broke out in June last year.To begin with, the police have been simply forced to deal with protesters by the government so as to cover its own blunders.Faced with increasing violence from radicals, the only way out for the police is to use suitable force. To do that, the force used must be higher than that used by the radicals, or…
  8. US President Donald Trump’s ordering of the killing of Iranian military leader Qassem Soleimani will rank as one of the most reckless actions of a president, who once again put his personal political interest above national security.Certainly, Soleimani deserved to meet his bitter fate. He was behind the killing of hundreds of American soldiers in Iraq while threatening and acting against American allies. However, killing him without considering the potentially dire regional repercussions and…
  9. Political issues demand political solutions. What better way is there to end the ongoing discontent and violence in Hong Kong than to hold a referendum – where the people of Hong Kong are given the right to decide whether they agree with the demands raised by the protesters?While there is a general consensus on the failure of Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor’s administration in managing the protest, which has caused irreversible damage to the reputation of this great city, the…
  10. I refer to the article, “How to bring Indonesia’s great unbanked masses into the fold of financial inclusion” (January 5), where agent banking was proposed as a “creative, hi-tech” method to address financial inclusion of the unbanked population in Indonesia.With all due respect, I would like to share some observations, drawn from China’s experience, to urge caution.While the rise of fintech or financial technology has offered more convenient and cost-effective banking services, it is…