State intimidation and electronic surveillance can be highly effective. It’s affecting China’s 180,000 students in Canada, as well as journalists.
What does a superpower do when pandas, private persuasion at the highest echelons and trumpeting the value of “harmony” are no longer winning global friends?
If you’re the leaders of increasingly autocratic China, you clamp down, especially on your own people. You spread an evermore elaborate system of surveillance, monitoring and pressure on citizens in your home country and in foreign lands.