• Mon
  • Dec 22, 2014
  • Updated: 10:17pm
Edward Snowden
NewsHong Kong
DIPLOMACY

Departing US consul fires sarcastic shots at media over Snowden saga

Stephen Young 'thanks' Beijing-friendly press for its objective coverage of the Snowden saga

PUBLISHED : Friday, 19 July, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 19 July, 2013, 7:12am
 

Departing US consul general Stephen Young, kept busy by whistle-blower Edward Snowden's surprise stopover in Hong Kong, fired some sarcastic parting shots at the media yesterday.

But he said he believed the damaged trust between the United States and Hong Kong could be repaired and pointed to encouraging signs of emerging universal suffrage.

Well, I thank you for all of your objective reporting at Ta Kung Pao, first of all. And if you don't get the sarcasm, it's there. I do wish you'd be more objective. But I know you have your master in Beijing
US consul general Stephen Young

At a media event before he departs for the US next week, Young was asked by a journalist from the Beijing-loyal Ta Kung Pao when the US government would reply on whether it had been hacking into the city's computers.

"Well, I thank you for all of your objective reporting at Ta Kung Pao, first of all. And if you don't get the sarcasm, it's there," Young replied. "I do wish you'd be more objective. But I know you have your master in Beijing."

Another journalist asked how the diplomat felt about protests by pro-democracy activists and Snowden supporters who said they no longer saw the US as a symbol of democracy. "Actually that was a plot by us," he joked.

"You see, as Ta Kung Pao regularly reports, along with Wen Wei Po and others, we actually fund and direct the pan-democrats so we have them coming to demonstrate outside our consulate to throw people off the scent."

After answering several questions from an i-Cable journalist, Young said that anyone who asked only a single question would get an "extra credit".

And when a South China Morning Post journalist identified himself and said he wanted to ask two questions, Young said: "You just lost your credit."

The Post had an exclusive interview with Snowden last month in which he claimed the US government had been hacking into computers in Hong Kong for years.

Sarcastic remarks aside, Young said he had a generally optimistic view of Hong Kong's future and believed that the damaged trust between the US and Hong Kong could be restored.

He said Snowden had made a lot of allegations, some of which seemed to be "self-serving to gain sympathy", and he did not think the US needed to apologise to anyone for someone who had violated his country's trust.

On universal suffrage in 2017, Young said he was encouraged by the central government liaison office's decision to have lunch with lawmakers, as well as Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying's plan to have dinner with people including the pan-democrats.

Asked if he supported the Occupy Central movement, he said he backed moves towards genuine universal suffrage but such moves should stay within the law.

The Snowden saga had no direct connection to the bill that would add Hong Kong to the US visa-waiver scheme, Young said.

Share

Related topics

For unlimited access to:

SCMP.com SCMP Tablet Edition SCMP Mobile Edition 10-year news archive
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
34

This article is now closed to comments

HK-Lover
You are so right Mr. Young ! It will be not easy and a long process for your successor to re-build Hong Kong people's confidence in the US .
hard times !
the main reason that the Snowden Affairs has been going on to be mentioned in this local paper is---the case has far from being concluded. Our whistle-blower (not traitor of course) is still stranded in Moscow airport's transit zone awaiting for the granting of a temporary asylum while his pursuers--the Obama administration and those lousy congressmen are putting pressure on the Russian government to have hm driven out of Russia and sent back to the States for trial ! South China Morning Post happened to be chosen by Mr.Snowden to have his revelations of the top-secrets of the NSA of America related to China and Hong Kong told to. So the follow-up of his true story naturally becomes a task of this local respectable English newspaper---which greatly angers those pro-America blind loyalists maybe ! But who cares ?
johnyuan
In my freshman year in college, my required reading included Marshall McLuhan's writing stated once that: 'the medium is the message'. He might be picking one form of communication from another that a medium becomes the message itsef. If he had lived to read SCMP a news medium of its Most Popular column, placing ‘Why are Chinese tourists so rude?’ unceasingly over a month or so as one of the five popular choice, McLuhan would said that SCMP had outdone his prediction. I for one, SCMP’s ranking and inclusion of the story over a month is unconvincing to a point of fabrication. I am piggybacking this comment on this 2nd ranking in the Most Popular column.
CC Wang Xiangwei Editor in-Chief SCMP
thetimchannel
Snowden is a hero. Obama would be well advised to give him immunity from prosecution (If Ford could do it for Nixon...), welcome him home and have him testify before Congress and the Senate. Immediately thereafter, statues of both him and Manning, (who should be likewise pardoned) get placed on either side of the Lincoln Memorial. I predict this scenario could happen rather quickly if the leakers quit focusing on all the US war crimes (redundant) and release something that would move the body politic. You know, like Lindsey Graham's browser history, or Rush Limbaugh's phone sex conversations. Something like that and tough privacy laws would be written into law faster than you can say Benghazi. Enjoy.
thetimchannel
It's not so much about that as it is about us spying on us. Enjoy.
hard times !
Has Snowden been convicted ? I wonder. If Snowden was said to be a spy (of China or Russia or both), what are the proofs ? Why didn't he just go to Beijing or Moscow instead of travelling from Hawaii to Hong Kong where he revealed the top-secrets of the National Security Agency of America to reporters of 'The Guardian' and 'South China Morning Post' ? Right ? Why he didn't accept the asylum granted to him by Russia days after his revelations ? Instead he had to flee Hong Kong via Moscow to Cuba where he dared not fly to for fear of being intercepted by US forces or agents and brought to a so-called 'fair' trial of his charges of espionage, stealing government properties and disclosing confidential national defece documents to unauthorized persons--the media.
jayb
Snowden will NOT be tried in US civilian court. the last thing Obama wants is for Snowden to summon NSA characters as defense witnesses, parading them in open court (ala Zimmerman, Arias, Peterson, OJ trials) to testify on NSA. military court is the only option but Snowden is civilian contractor, not soldier ala Manning.
babyhenry
Well to develop big balls your typical american brain has shrink to a size of a peanut, that explains why your brightest and smartest are pretty much all imported and not locally educated - You seem to be a shining example of that..... and BTW being one of your largest debt holders, all China have to do is simply not buy your debt or start throwing them away.... sure it would hurt itself but it will hurt you much more...... well I suppose you can always count on Japan to jump in a take the bullet and buy whatever the Chinese or others are throwing away eh? Also do not buy from China, than we can surely see the effect of your QE 1,2,3 on inflation... oo please lets not kid ourself that you are buying from China because of Quality, no its because its cheap period so you can export your inflation when you are printing paper. I do apologize for trying to make you think we that peanut size brain of yours, maybe you can genetically make your balls to replace your brain...... ooo wait most of your countrymen are already on that stage and we can see how well that went.
chanyellowgreen
We are living in a civilised world. We do not compare the size of our 'balls', please.
daily
What a loser!!!!!!!!!.........go back to that hole of yours in your beloved America and stay there to make your stupid remarks..........or make it to Obama.............He might listen to you,,,,,,,,,

Pages

Login

SCMP.com Account

or