The Times podcast: The Chinese Communist Party and me, Part 1

A Hong Kong protest in 2019
Demonstrators in Hong Kong move a statue depicting a protester armed with a gas mask, helmet and umbrella during a street rally in 2019.
(Vincent Yu / Associated Press)
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Two years ago, the world watched as millions of people in Hong Kong marched in the streets to call for autonomy from China. Beijing responded by passing a national security law last summer that broadly defined acts of subversion, foreign collusion and terrorism. Critics say the law crushed civil liberties. Since it was enacted, many people have fled Hong Kong — some to neighboring Taiwan. Yet Taiwan, a self-governing island that China claims as its territory, is at risk as well.


Today, we start a two-part series on the Chinese Communist Party’s ambitions as it celebrates its 100th anniversary. This episode delves into the continued crackdown on freedom and democracy in Hong Kong, where authorities have arrested thousands of pro-democracy activists and shut down a major daily newspaper. We’ll also discuss China’s growing threats to absorb Taiwan. Tomorrow, how the Communist Party is rewriting China’s history.

Host: Gustavo Arellano

Guest: Los Angeles Times foreign correspondent David Pierson

More reading:

Beleaguered pro-democracy Hong Kong newspaper Apple Daily says it’s closing down

As democracy fades, Hong Kong’s political opposition become political prisoners

The most important company you’ve never heard of is being dragged into the U.S.-China rivalry

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About The Times

“The Times” is made by columnist Gustavo Arellano, producer Shannon Lin, senior producers Steven Cuevas and Denise Guerra, executive producer Abbie Fentress Swanson and editor Julia Turner. Our engineer is Mario Diaz. Our intern is Ashlea Brown. Our theme song was composed by Andrew Eapen.