Talking Points: Should Hong Kong have its own army?

Talking Points: Should Hong Kong have its own army?

Hate it when you can't talk back? Well, you can with Young Post. Have your say and share with students around Hong Kong

Isabella Livia Tsang, 13, True Light Girls' College

Though I'd like to see a Hong Kong army some day, I don't think it's a good idea.

First, Hong Kong is not a sovereign state, so having its own army is against the law. I also believe Beijing wouldn't allow any sort of independence for Hong Kong, so forming our own army is out of the question.

Besides, the central government has been handling military and diplomatic affairs since the handover so we don't have any experience of such matters. Also, Beijing would want to tighten their grip on Hong Kong to ensure there are no "rebellions" here. Hong Kong is just not able to have an army right now.


Kaur Mukhjot, 16, St Margaret's Girls' College, Hong Kong

Hong Kong having its own army? Are you joking? What would you need a local army here for? Hong Kong is not a war-torn city and the chances of us being attacked by a foreign force are very slim.

Although I agree that having our own army would create a lot of job opportunities for Hongkongers, the disadvantages would outweigh the benefits. I wouldn't want to make Beijing angry. So I think we should leave military matters to the People's Liberation Army.


Asif Kainaat, 16, HKTA The Yuen Yuen Institute No 3 Secondary School

I believe in safety first, so Hong Kong should have its own army. The major advantage of having a strong military is that countries around the world will respect us and will think twice before starting a conflict with us. We would also have more influence in international negotiations and diplomacy.

For example, when Russia annexed Crimea, in Ukraine, in 2014, the US could do nothing but simply impose economic sanctions on Russia. If Russia were a weak country, the Americans would have invaded it by now.


Saad Mahmood, 15, HKTA The Yuen Yuen Institute No 3 Secondary School

Hong Kong shouldn't have its own army because the Basic Law says so. According to Hong Kong's mini-constitution, the Legislative Council can pass laws for all areas except defence and foreign affairs.

We don't need an army because we are a part of China, and if we face any dangers, Beijing will always help us. The PLA has a base in Hong Kong just for that purpose.

An army usually protects a country, not small cities like Hong Kong and Macau.

I think we can carry on like this until 2047. We should stick to the Basic Law and allow Beijing to handle our diplomatic and defence affairs.


Vannessa Kwok Nga-yu, 15, Law Ting Pong Secondary School

It is not necessary for Hong Kong to have an army. But if we do, Hongkongers will need to pay more taxes to support the army and buy things like weapons, warships and aircraft.

With Hong Kong's ageing population, we need to spend a lot of money to support the elderly. Having an army is a huge waste of money. Also, if a lot of young people become soldiers, who is going to run the city and ensure economic development?

Worse still, if youngsters join the army, they will be separated from their friends and families. Soldiers mostly stay in their camps and cannot go home very often. Instead of training young people to fight wars, why don't we let them do something truly meaningful?


When we get back from the Lunar New Year break, Talking Points will discuss:

What makes you a Hongkonger?

We are now accepting answers from readers for this new topic. To take part, email your answer with your name, age and school, along with a nice, clear selfie (make sure it's not blurry), to yp@scmp.com by lunchtime on Monday, February 15. Be sure to include "Talking Points" in the subject line.

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
Should Hong Kong have its own army?

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7 Comments

YP Letters

10:38am

It is an unrealistic expectation for Hong Kong to have its own army. According to the Basic Law, Hong Kong has a high level of autonomy except for foreign affairs and national defence, so it is also illegal.
Hong Kong does not have sovereignty. Therefore central government in China will not let Hong Kong have an army. And you cannot have one unless you want to put us all in danger.
It also directly affects everyone in Hong Kong. The government must develop an army with all the resources they have. Who will be pay for this? Why don't we make good use of “one country, two systems”?
Cheung Chi Hung, HKTA The Yuen Yuen Institute No.1 Secondary School

YP Letters

10:55am

If there is an army in Hong Kong, I think we will have too much power. We are just a little city to people of other countries. If we end up fighting with them, we will easily lose. Then we will all live in Hong Kong unhappily and it will bring many disadvantages.
Chow Chee Ching, Carmel Divine Grace Foundation Secondary School

YP Letters

11:56am

I think the People's Liberation Army should be stationed in Hong Kong. But it should consist of Hong Kong people only and they should serve for a minimum of 6 months when they are over the age of 16. I think my suggestions can reflect the spirit of Hong Kong.
Firstly protecting our city is our responsibility. Allowing people to join the PLA will give us a sense of belonging to the Motherland. Secondly, teenagers in Hong Kong are used to being pampered by doting parents so if they are given a chance to join the army, they will be more independent and know how to take care of themselves.
Joyce Chan, Carmel Divine Grace Foundation Secondary School

YP Letters

12:20pm

Hong Kong is a peaceful city where people from all over the world live and work together. Why would we need our own army? Resources, time and money would be wasted by training people when there aren't any wars.
The aging population needs the younger generation to look after them and not to fight. We need to solve other problems like lack of housing and wealth disparity first. As for our safety, China is always there to lend a helping hand. And if she's not, why not send the politicians to war instead?
Kaur Bervinder, St Antonius Girls' College

YP Letters

12:40pm

I think Hong Kong should have its own army. This way, in case there is a terrorist attack or war, we would at least have some protection. This is why people in the past formed armies. Hong Kong should learn to fight by itself and not to always depend on China. We should be more independent. China is our country but we have to stand on our own too feet like a kid growing up, China being our mother.
Some people say that we don't need armies because they symbolise world wars. And we are not a country. Since we do not belong to Britain anymore, we can be counted as an independent democratic society. When we do have protests and activities that the police cannot control by themselves, we should have any army. This should be along the lines of Occupy Central but not the kind that shoots and rides on tanks.
Hillary Lo, Sha Tin College

YP Letters

13:23pm

I do not think Hong Kong should have its own army. We are only a tiny city with over seven million citizens. We do not have the extra space for a military base. The chance of a war breaking out is extremely remote at the moment and more countries are working on peacekeeping.
But the expense of maintaining an army is astronomical. I wish the government could use the money to benefit citizens and offer them a helping hand. After all, there are many homeless folks spending chilly nights under flyovers during this cold winter these days.
Ken Chan, CNEC Christian College

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