1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre

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June 4, 1989 is a day remembered in numerous parts around the world as a dark and somber tragedy that disregarded the most basic values of freedom and democracy. Yet this event is often viewed in the narrow lens as a failure of an attempt to democratize. Through this lens, the historical contexts and following consequences are severely oversimplified, which results in an inadequate and biased perspective of the event itself. The China today is still shaped and molded by the memories of the Tiananmen Square Incident, upon which there is general stability and prosperity for almost three decades since then. This paper seeks to examine the underlying historical factors of China that led to the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre, its consequences and …show more content…
In the end, while Mao’s cult of personality dominated over the government’s revolutionary credentials, Mao himself was aging and could not escape his mortal fate. When he finally passed away ten years after the Culture Revolution started, the Cultural Revolution also ended with him. The chaos and disorder produced by the Cultural Revolution from 1966 to 1976 are now commonly referred to as China’ ten lost years, and fundamentally shaped the views of CCP members who survived the ordeal and eventually regained …show more content…
Fang Lizhi was a CCP member and an astrophysicist, who became the Vice President of University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) in 1984. Having suffered through both the Anti-Rightist Campaign of 1957 and the Cultural Revolution due to his criticism of the CCP, Fang embraced liberal ideologies and began lecturing on political reforms throughout the country. Even in 1985, students were already discontent at the economic situation. According to a confidential telegram sent by the American embassy in Beijing on November 25, 1985, the Chinese police had interviewed more than a hundred student demonstrators and arrested 23 individuals who were believed to be the ringleaders of a student demonstration on November 20, 1985 in Tiananmen Square. Fang’s lectures on democratic reforms caused significant anxiety within the CCP, with many conservatives still adamantly rejecting political reforms. The situation deteriorated in late 1986, when students from USTC protested in the streets. Their actions quickly spread to other universities, including Tsinghua and Peking University. The demonstrations came in waves, and lasted until New Years of 1987. At the end of it all, Fang was stripped of all his positions and ranks, but he was not the highest ranking official to fall from this

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