A video showing demonstrators using lasers in opposition to police in Hong Kong has gone viral, simply because the local garrison of Chinese troops shared its own clip demonstrating its anti-riot capabilities.
The 29-second protest footage was first shared Sunday by journalist Alejandro Alvarez, then by French outlet L’Important on Tuesday and shared the next day by freelance journalist Alessandra Bocchi in a tweet that has since gathered tens of 1000’s of retweets and effectively over 150,000 likes. A mass of protesters is seen shining multi-colored lasers through what seemed to be tear gas at a group of cops clad in anti-riot gear in what Bocchi and New York University political science professor Ian Bremmer asserted was an attempt to thwart facial recognition technology.
The science fiction-like visuals have been among the many dramatic scenes to emerge from the months of unrest sparked by a controversial invoice that may see Hong Kong residents able to being extradited from their semi-autonomous special administration region to the mainland under the complete jurisdiction of the Chinese Communist Party in Beijing.
Even after Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrier Lam promised to droop the bill last month, offended citizens have called for it to be scrapped completely as well as her resignation and greater freedom from the central government.
With some isolated instances of violence being blamed on each rioter and authorities, the hypothesis has mounted as to whether the Chinese authorities planned to reply.