There was a time in the world when one naval service guarded trade routes, delivered troops to put out native brushfires, and, most important, defended far flung possessions from the depredations of savages and tyrants.
But Britannia no longer rules the waves, she hardly rules the Thames, and the Royal Navy would be hard-pressed indeed to make its writ stick solid outside of territorial waters. The Falklands campaign seems centuries, not decades, ago.
However, by the brave but perhaps foolish actions of the protestors who trashed Chicom-led Hong Kong government spaces recently you’d think, as the port was once a jewel in the imperial crown, the Royal Navy is fast on the horizon with dreadnoughts and cruisers ready to deliver a stern pranging, or mere gunboat diplomacy, to the Beijing heathen.
Sadly, they are not and won’t be.
The courageous rebels even raised the old crown colony flag in their revelry. They are rebelling against the encroachments on their liberties by President Xi and his regime. But just like the lone man standing against the tank thirty years ago this year in Tiananmen Square, there is nobody to back him up.
If the Chicoms decide to crack down on Hong Kong’s relative independence then the world will issue terse communiqués signaling their displeasure. Will anything else be done? Can anything else be done?
By logistics, proximity to the mainland, and might China all but already can tell the island to tow the line or else. That’s why the lost cause of the protestors is so bloody sad. Their goal is something that geopolitically just will not happen, the preservation of a semblance of freedom in Hong Kong.
They will in due course be swallowed up by the dragon state and the world will hardly look up from their cell phones to notice.
Such is China. Such is history.