Jimmy Lai vs. China – The New York Times


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This episode contains strong language.

Jimmy Lai was born in mainland China but made his fortune in Hong Kong, starting as a sweatshop worker and becoming a clothing tycoon. After the Tiananmen massacre in 1989, he turned his attention to the media, launching publications critical of China’s Communist Party.

“I believe in the media,” he told Austin Ramzy, a Hong Kong reporter for The New York Times. “By delivering information, you’re actually delivering freedom.”

In August, he was arrested under Hong Kong’s new Beijing-sponsored national security law.

Today, we talk to Mr. Lai about his life, his arrest and campaigning for democracy in the face of China’s growing power.

Background reading:

  • In August, Mr. Lai, his two sons and four Apple Daily executives were arrested under the new national security law. The publication was a target and a test case for the government’s authority over the news media.

Tune in, and tell us what you think. Email us at thedaily@nytimes.com. Follow Michael Barbaro on Twitter: @mikiebarb. And if you’re interested in advertising with “The Daily,” write to us at thedaily-ads@nytimes.com.

Austin Ramzy and Tiffany May contributed reporting.

“The Daily” is made by Theo Balcomb, Andy Mills, Lisa Tobin, Rachel Quester, Lynsea Garrison, Annie Brown, Clare Toeniskoetter, Paige Cowett, Michael Simon Johnson, Brad Fisher, Larissa Anderson, Wendy Dorr, Chris Wood, Jessica Cheung, Stella Tan, Alexandra Leigh Young, Lisa Chow, Eric Krupke, Marc Georges, Luke Vander Ploeg, Kelly Prime, Julia Longoria, Sindhu Gnanasambandan, M.J. Davis Lin, Austin Mitchell, Neena Pathak, Dan Powell, Dave Shaw, Sydney Harper, Daniel Guillemette, Hans Buetow, Robert Jimison, Mike Benoist, Bianca Giaever, Liz O. Baylen, Asthaa Chaturvedi and Rachelle Bonja. Our theme music is by Jim Brunberg and Ben Landsverk of Wonderly. Special thanks to Sam Dolnick, Mikayla Bouchard, Lauren Jackson, Julia Simon, Mahima Chablani, Nora Keller, Sofia Milan and Desiree Ibekwe.





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