Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

Silence in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on June 3, 2011

Article from the financial Times, I know of many who are also ignorant of the event.

“Xu Chunjing and Chen Shan were both born in 1989 but neither of them has heard of the student protests that erupted that year in and around Beijing’s Tiananmen Square and across the country.
Both young women are students at Beijing’s Capital University of Economics and Business and are preparing to continue their studies in the UK this summer.
Thanks to a ban on the subject, they simply do not know anything about the massacre that occurred on June 4 1989, when China’s leaders ordered the People’s Liberation Army to clear the Square using tanks and live ammunition on unarmed civilians. But while the Communist party has been able to erase the atrocity from the collective consciousness of its people, it still casts a long and powerful shadow over elite politics
“Most young people have barely heard about the events of 1989 and if they have, they usually hold a distorted view of what happened,” says Perry Link, emeritus professor of East Asian studies at Princeton and a translator of the Tiananmen Papers, the secret government files on the party’s response to the 1989 protests. “But in the minds of the Chinese leadership [the massacre] remains a burning issue,” he says

….however, many of the next generation of leaders, such as president-in-waiting Xi Jinping and Chongqing party secretary Bo Xilai, are “princelings”, children of revolutionary founding fathers, whose parents are closely associated with the events of 1989.”


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