Pro-China protesters gesture towards Hong Kong democracy demonstrators in Melbourne (Image: AAP/Erik Anderson)

Last weekend, around the globe, supporters of the people of Hong Kong took to the streets. Millions joined the protest against the accelerating influence of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). And, as some rallies turned violent, two things have become clear. 

The first: the warnings about the insidious influence of the CCP in other countries by academics, journalists and others who have studied the Chinese government -- but who have often been dismissed as fear-mongers -- are proving to be fact.