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May 20

A recollection of the 1989 student movement in Tianjin

Written by kui on Wednesday, May 20th, 2009 at 8:21 pm
Filed under:General, politics | Tags:, , ,
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admin’s note: This year is the 20th anniversary of the 1989 student movement. No matter what your view on this subject is, what happened 20 years ago is no doubt an important piece of Chinese history. As Zhu Rongji, former Chinese premier minister, then mayor of Shanghai, famously said, on June 8, 1989, “No one can cover up historical facts forever, and the truth will eventually reveal itself” (历史事实是没有人能够隐瞒的,事实真相终将大白).

Many people are interested in the events happened on the Tiananmen Square. While undoubtedly it was the epicenter of the 89 student movement, we should not lose sight that large scale demonstrations happened in many other cities too. To almost any college student at that time, 1989 was a life changing year. Previously Eugene recalled his experience as a student in Shanghai. Here is an observation and reflection from a student in Tianjin (天津), the closest major city to Beijing. This post was emailed to me by kui (thank you very much!). I took liberty to  modify the original text slightly. I hope more people of the ’89 generation will come forward and share his/her experiences and thoughts.

I was 21 years old and studying in a college in Tianjin in 1989. When I first heard that the student protest in Beijing had escalated to hunger strike, I was shocked that such extreme measure was taken. Hunger strike is not without health consequences. What if the government refuses to give in? But it did not even take me five seconds to decide that I should support it. Almost every student in our college supported it. We decided to boycott classes. Very few students who had different opinions still went to library to study and I saw them confronted by other students.

Some students were frustrated by the slow response of our college. University of Tianjin and Nankai University had already protested on the streets! Finally an all-out protest was organized. Roughly there were 2000 students participated in the protest. It was a bit disappointing that our teachers did not participate. We marched on the busiest commercial streets of Tianjin such as Anshan Street. We were against corruptions and we demanded democracy and freedom. I remembered some popular slogans such as “save our nation via democracy” (民主救国)”, “down with corrupted officials” (打倒贪官污吏) and one of Sun Yat-sen’s quotes “one cannot resist the trend of the whole world; whoever follows it will rise, whoever opposes it, will perish (世界潮流,浩浩荡荡,顺之则昌, 逆之则亡). We marched twice in Tianjin. Although we did block the traffic, overall our protests were peaceful. Many ordinary Tianjiners lined up the street to show their support but I did hear some negative comments from the crowd such as “the more chaos, the better” (越乱越好), “another cultural revolution is coming” (又文革了), “students only know how to mess around” (学生就会瞎闹). The response from Tianjin local government was interesting; the police force was in nowhere to be seen.

We decided to go to Beijing. Back in 1989 it was a two hour trip by train from Tianjin to Beijing. So the entire college marched again to Tianjin station. We were given a free ride to Beijing. There we joined a much larger protest. We Marched on Changan Street. There were factory workers demanded better pay and work conditions. Restaurant workers protested against luxurious dinner parties paid by public funds. Workers from Beijing Steel protested in support of the students… It was spectacular and exciting. We met with other students mainly from colleges and universities of Beijing on the square.

There were lots of activities going on. Musicians came to entertain students. We received free meals. Some famous people from all sorts of backgrounds came to the square to show support. We shouted slogans and we sang songs. However there was very little communications between the students and student leaders. We tried to visit the students who were on hunger strike but were stopped as excessive visiting might exhaust them further. There were loud speakers set up on the square by students. The hunger strike was in a prolonged stage. Sirens of ambulances could be heard constantly. One night, I heard a female voice spoke to paramedics in loudspeaker “please do not take all of our hunger strike students to hospitals.” There was a chill went down my spine when I first heard of that. I felt very uncomfortable with it. If all of these students need to go to the hospitals then they have to go. The same voice made the same statements again and again and I then got use to it. Some students said that was Chai Ling’s voice.

After spending 2 days on the square we were exhausted. A group of students including me decided to go back to Tianjin. We were told that we should keep the student number up on the square. And that was the direct request from the University Autonomous Association (高自联). We all agreed that we would be back to the Square after a hot shower and a good night sleep.

The Beijing station was chaotic. The station was packed with students from other provinces. Some had just arrived and some were trying to leave. Ordinary travelers and students had no idea when and on which platform to catch their trains because there was not a functioning schedule. The railway workers were trying to manage the crowd instead of selling or checking tickets. Finally we got information from other students and found a train that was heading to Tianjin. The platform was packed and the train was packed. Some students were trying to get onto the train through windows. Before the train departed one of my roommates suffered a panic attack. We managed to get her off the train and she recovered after resting in a staff room of the station.

The trip took much longer than two hours because the train traveled slowly and some times it had to stop. I was exhausted when I finally reached my dormitory. The campus was almost empty and surprisingly my father and younger sister were waiting for me outside the building! They looked tired and worried. They asked me to go home with them and I did. I had the worst argument with my parents in my 21 years when they stopped me from going back to the square. It was insulting to hear my own parents saying things like “Another culture revolution will not save China”. I have to admit now that they had more political acumen.

My father said to me, “the CCP was arisen from mass student movements, it will in no way allow you to confront the government indefinitely” (共产党就是靠学生运动起家的,绝对不会由着你们这样没完没了地闹下去). When my parents told me that a heavy-handed crackdown was imminent I thought they were trying to scare me off. Probably it was their teary eyes that finally calmed me down. They took turns to keep an eye on me.

Then came the CCTV ‘s announcement of an “antirevolutionary riot”. I remember that morning I saw buses traveling around with messages painted in red. “Brutal government bloodbathed the Tiananmen square!” “Tens of thousands students killed on Tiananmen square” “Down with the Communist Party”. I was so angry. I cried my eyes out.

After lots of begging and crying, my parents escorted me back to the college. My roommates and classmates were all safe and well. The college did not try to resume classes. We were sent home for extra long summer holiday. When the new semester started we were given a form to make a statement about our actions during the student movement. I remembered hearing a whisper when I received the form. “Do not admit anything.” I struggled a little bit when I wrote down “Did not participate”. Is this lying? Am I scared of possible consequences? I handed in the form ashamed but later on found everyone else did the same. No one in the college was punished no matter what they did.

I tried to find victims on day one of the new semester, starting from my own class; I expanded my search to other classes, staff and faculty members. There was no one killed or injured. Other students also did similar searches. In fact, we could not even find a student from our college who was on the square that night. They all came back when the atmosphere became very tense on June 3.

At the beginning it was all about anger towards the CCP. Then gradually there was some doubt kicked in about what exactly happen on 4 June. I started to question the “tens of thousands students killed” story line. CCTV had shown the bodies of burned to death soldiers and another video in which a soldier was stoned to death. There was no discussion about this among my friends but I have found it hard to forget. I expanded my search to other universities and colleges in Tianjin through my high school ties but only managed to meet one student who was on the square that night. According to him the students moved out of the square before the PLA moved in. Had nowhere to stay they headed toward Beijing station and came back to Tianjin. We graduated in 1991, 2 years after 6.4. My classmates and I had not been able to locate one single student who was killed, injured, or witnessed the killing on that day. Tianjin was the third largest city in China in 1989 and it is the closest city to Beijing. Compared to other cities and provinces, Tianjian provided the largest number of outside students coming to Beijing. If tens of thousands had been killed then by chance there would be casualties among Tianjin students that I have known or heard of.

Apparently we were not really traumatized or we were very resilient, life moved on. We settled down and continued with our study. We dated, found our loved ones, and many sought to go abroad. By the time we graduated there was almost no discussion about the student movement and we no longer listened to the VOA.

One thing I have been kept thinking was the role of the VOA. Many students were the fans of the radio station before, during and shortly after the student movement. Even when we were on the square many students were listening to their programs as if only they could tell us what was going on. I remember at one stage it said the PLA stationed in Beijing was in a defensive position and then it asked some questions such as “Who are they waiting for and why are they in a defensive position?” I immediately drew a conclusion that there was a rebelling PLA force coming to support us!! Until I double checked with my cousin I realized how stupid I was to draw that conclusion.

My cousin joined the PLA when she was only 17. She was posted to Tangshan and survived the Tangshan earthquake in 1976. She received some sort of reward for helping the injured, safeguarding a bank and became a CCP member. She was in Beijing working for a PLA newspaper at the time. She got into trouble because she and a dozen of her co-workers protested in support of the students. They marched without wearing army uniform, but still she was immediately suspended. As the only female officer participated in the student movement from the PLA, she was made “to retire” from the army. All her male counterparts were discharged from the army straight away. She went through long-term unemployment.

When I asked her whether the student movement had any support from the army, she said “No”. According her she was among the very few “crazy” ones that would take action to support the student movement. My second question was how could the PLA soldiers shoot at their own country men? She looked at me with some sadness and said she almost did the same when she was given the task to guard a collapsed bank after the earthquake. This was the part that she had never told me before.

Why did I participate in the student movement? I remember visiting my auntie’s family during school holidays in my early high school years (early 1980s). My auntie’s husband (we called him uncle) was probably one of the leftist hardliners and there were always fierce arguments between him and his two sons at the dinning table every night. It was about Capitalism vs. Communism and my uncle was losing. My auntie always tried to stop them from arguing. According to my auntie, my uncle was getting sidelined by “Deng’s people” at work (he was a high rank army officer) and getting “bullied” by his own sons at home. Probably that was all too much for the poor old soldier, he passed away early. The same argument also happened at school. Back in those years one of the compulsory subjects at high school was “Politics”. We were taught about the Marxist theory. We asked many hard questions during the class. I remembered very clearly one student asked, “China was in a complete turmoil during the ROC time and capitalism was not given any chance to develop. If the capitalism is one of the developmental stages of Human society then how can China almost skip the entire developmental stage, jumping from a feudal society to socialism?” The teacher was often red faced and could not answer our questions.

By the time I got into college it looked like a drastic reform was about to unfold. Living standard had improved but there was lots of uncertainty and dissatisfaction too. Those unemployed were the first group to start their own small business and they immediately became richer than professionals. Back then all college students enjoyed free accommodation, 100% healthcare coverage provided by the government, and were guaranteed with a job upon graduation. It was said college students were going to loose all these privileges when further reform kicked in. It looked like the pending reform would make things worse to many.

In late 1980s there were few reports about western countries and from what I could recall there was no negative reporting (Maybe there was but it was filtered through my brain and discarded into the CCP propaganda bin). The Voice of America introduced democracy and America to us and we loved the life Americans had, free, rich, and happy. To us at that time the America was the model country of the world. Today after 11 years living in a democratic country I have to admit that I knew very little about democracy. All I knew was a beautiful words plus a belief that democracy will fix up all the problems for China.

My family emigrated to Australia in 1998. The old scar of Tiananmen was then reopened again and again. From Australian high school textbook I found that “thousands killed by the communist government”. The number varies from one source to the other. There is no doubt the killing happened, but why is it exaggerated so much? Good teaching material? I have grown a strong nauseated feeling towards this kind of distortion over the last 10 years. The students were pushed against the PLA like an egg was thrown to a hard rock; surely the rock broke the egg but shouldn’t the one who threw the egg be also held responsible? Adding to my suspicion is the behavior of those student leaders we once followed. They have drifted apart from my friends and me when they mixed themselves up with separatists, FLG…

What did we want to achieve? A Great Leap Forward to western democracy? Did we know that in a democracy a protest does not result in “everything we want”? When western public see their governments using their tax money to start a wrong war they protest but then they go home. Did we have the slightest consideration of the stability China needed to develop? Painful, so painful to reflect on all of these! We had the best intention for our motherland but did we really know what was good for her?

To the students, Beijingers, and soldiers who died on June 4th, rest in peace. Although I have never met with you, my heart goes out to you. I am pleased to let you know that China is now on the right track.


There are currently 1 comments highlighted: 37626.

225 Responses to “A recollection of the 1989 student movement in Tianjin”

  1. Raj Says:

    Kui, a very interesting read. Thank you for sharing your experiences with us. Are you going to come here to answer questions as well? I only have one point of your article to respond to directly.

    There is no doubt the killing happened, but why is it exaggerated so much?

    The problem here is that there are no reliable, verified figures. What numbers are out there differ wildly depending on the sources relied on. I could be wrong, but I believe the Chinese Red Cross said that over two thousand people died (until the government made it retract its estimate). Amnesty International said a thousand died.

    Is it so surprising that, without figures from the Chinese government deemed credible by many non-Chinese, a publisher/author might believe those NGOs?

  2. kui Says:

    Where did these NGOs get their numbers from? If any source from mainland China can not be trusted then why not try to get the number from former student overseas? I believe many former students are now living overseas plus most of the student leaders are now in the US. Have they ever tried to get a name list of the victims? To me it is not an extreamly difficult task. It can be started from certain university such as University of Beijing or Qing Hua. Started from these former students’ own faculty, own grade then gruadually we can piece it together. There was no student injured or killed from my college (天津医学院)

  3. Charles Liu Says:

    Raj, the casualty figure released by the Chinese government is consistent with estimate from our own NSA intelligence.

    But of course, you and Richard know better, and anything that you suspect as “lock-step” by these less-than-human Chinese, is opinion that’s worth less than us enlightened poeple of the West, right?

    Well, I’m here to tell you I disagree with you.

  4. Think Ming! Says:

    “The students were pushed against the PLA like an egg was thrown to a hard rock; surely the rock broke the egg but shouldn’t the one who threw the egg be also held responsible?”

    I think the blame when military shoot unarmed civilians lies squarely with those doing the shooting. Perhaps circumstances can sometimes excuse their actions, but they still carry full responsibility for pulling the trigger.

    It applied at Kent State, and it applied in Beijing.

    As for the ‘how could the military shoot their own people?’ stuff. . .

    So it’s OK if they shoot unarmed foreigners?

    As for accusing Australian textbooks for ‘distortion’ merely for mentioning ‘thousands’ killed. . . Really. . . I don’t quite understand. . . Surely the real distortion of the event has been by the Chinese government? I mean I don’t really see how this can be denied except by the batshit crazy.

  5. Wukailong Says:

    kui: Thanks for your post!

    The last couple of days I watched a DVD from BBC about news reports the last 50 years. In the part about 1984-1993, there is about half a minute of reports from China at the time, both before the crackdown and after. I was surprised by the contents because there weren’t so much about the massacre but rather things like an “uncontrollable mob” wanting to lynch a soldier, and some students trying to protect him. In the last scene, there was gunfire, tanks crushing barricades, and reports on people shouting “Down with the government.”

  6. Raj Says:

    kui

    Where did these NGOs get their numbers from?

    Where does any NGO get their numbers from? I don’t know, you have to ask them.

    If any source from mainland China can not be trusted then why not try to get the number from former student overseas?

    Who said “any source” from China? I was talking about the government. The problem is that the government monopolises the “truth” so you don’t get a wide range of views on the death toll, unless you look overseas.

    To me it is not an extreamly difficult task. It can be started from certain university such as University of Beijing or Qing Hua. Started from these former students’ own faculty, own grade then gruadually we can piece it together.

    So you’ve tried doing it, then?

    +++

    Charles

    Raj, the casualty figure released by the Chinese government is consistent with estimate from our own NSA intelligence.

    Wrong. The declassified report make no judgment on overall figures.

    http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB16/documents/13-01.htm

    All it says is that figures are unclear and that there have been reports of 180-500 dead with thousands injured. That’s not the same as saying what the death toll was, and how can the final one have been confirmed such a short time after the event?

    But of course, you and Richard know better, and anything that you suspect as “lock-step” by these less-than-human Chinese, is opinion that’s worth less than us enlightened poeple of the West, right?

    Oh quit your victim-mentality and drop the anti non-Chinese nonsense, Charles. You didn’t even bother to read the source or if you have you’re deliberately misreading it. There still hasn’t been a confirmed number on those killed and injured. Your attempts at point-scoring disrespect them. Grow up and start acting like someone who actually cares about others rather than sees them as resources that can be expended in his war of Chinese nationalism.

  7. kui Says:

    Raj, I thought you knew where did these NGOs get their number from, do you? You gave these numbers as if they come from reliable source? So you do not know either?

    So, the Chinese government can not be trusted and US government’s number can not be considered then which number can we believe, the NGOs you recommended?

    I have done my little bit to tried to find victims started from my college, did I make it clear? If the student leaders could organise such large scale protests in a non-democratic country under the harsh rule of the CCP in the past why can not they organise a small on-line survey of the former students who are now overseas? I am afraid that you will say any survey from mainland China is censored by the government and therefore can not be trusted? So, can former students who are now overseas be trusted to provide names and numbers?

    If the former leaders still enjoy the same level of support from the former students then I am sure it is nothing difficult. The number and names are easy to get. It has been 20 years, why they have not done it yet? Why? Can anyone tell me WHY?

  8. Raj Says:

    Raj, I thought you knew where did these NGOs get their number from, do you? You gave these numbers as if they come from reliable source?

    No, I gave them to give you as a reason why a publisher might write that thousands died. Some people trust NGOs.

    So, the Chinese government can not be trusted

    I didn’t say the Chinese government cannot be trusted. I said that many people (especially non-Chinese) do not deem their figures credible. You accept that is the case, surely? Much like how many Americans didn’t trust George Bush’s administration even if they might have been telling the truth. When an organisation has low credibility it affects how it is perceived in all things.

    US government’s number can not be considered

    The US government memo was not an estimate – it was a report about reports. After the 2005 London bombings, there were reports that no one had been killed. So does that mean subsequent reports were all lies? All the memo was saying was “Mr Secretary, we’ve heard that xyz has happened”. It wasn’t saying “Mr Secretary, we have conducted an investigation and we believe that xyz has happened”.

    then which number can we believe, the NGOs you recommended?

    This is the problem. If people aren’t going to trust the Chinese government, they’re going to have to choose from someone else and make a choice between those estimates.

    I have done my little bit to tried to find victims started from my college, did I make it clear?

    Yes, but I was talking about people from other colleges and universities.

    If the student leaders could organise such large scale protests in a non-democratic country under the harsh rule of the CCP in the past why can not they organise a small on-line survey of the former students who are now overseas?

    Did they personally organise such large scale protests, or did they organise something much smaller that grew subsequently? As for an online survey, what would the purpose be? To collect the names of people who others thought died? Do you know how many people who could provide correct feedback (and not get confused) live outside of China?

    Can anyone tell me WHY?

    No, they can’t. The only people who can tell you are the former “leaders” themselves. You will have to get in contact with them.

  9. kui Says:

    Raj.

    I got no answers from your answers. Word games are not funny, thank you.

    When my friends and I did our little search back then we went from one dormitory room to the other to make sure we get it right. I can be 100% sure that there was no one injured or killed from my college. You may think that I am 瞎子摸象only got tiny part of the whole picture but I am sure we were not blind. Majority of Beijing and Tianjin’s universities and colleges located in a small part of the city next to each other. For Beijing is Haidian District and for Tianjin is the junction area between Heping and Nankai District. Students from these universities and colleges frequently visit each other through 同乡会, clubs, high school ties, and academic exchanges…News flies among these schools. Before we graduated my friends and I searched for 2 years but could not locate one single victim. That is some thing to me. I once believed that tens of thousands killed on Tiananmen Square and did not believe the number released by the Chinese government. 20 years later I think they may have told the truth.

    To be here at fool’s mountain one has to be a fool. I am a fool to believe what my friends and I did was meaningful. If other fools could also contribute then we can piece the parcel together.

    The student leader’s inaction, my gut feeling tells me it is out of deliberation. If they could organize something small then let it grow big in the past then they had the last 20 years to do the same. They did not do it. Try to work out a victim name list through internet is no difficult task for them given the fact that most of these former leaders are now paid by NGO as full time China bashers. The university name, faculty, grade, and victim’s name can be collected then double checked to rule out repetitions easily. Why they did not do it? I would ask them if I still trust them but now I do not. I do not like to be sold twice.

  10. Raj Says:

    I got no answers from your answers. Word games are not funny, thank you.

    kui, words are important. A person isn’t playing a game by making it clear what he/she means. If you do want to know why reported deaths are “exaggerated”, it is true that you have to consider the wider dispute over numbers, the perceived lack of credibility that the Chinese government has in the eyes of many non-Chinese, the fact that NGOs are often respected and thus people won’t automatically suspect their estimates, etc.

    Are you telling me that I’m wrong, that none of those factors is believable?

    Before we graduated my friends and I searched for 2 years but could not locate one single victim.

    You searched for two years? Do you mean that over two years you sometimes looked into it? I’m sure you tried, but did you consider that given the crackdown students might not want to talk about it? No offence, but only a relatively small number of people would have known you well enough to trust you. If I was a Chinese student and a random guy came up to me asking about whether I knew anyone who died in the 1989 protests, I might keep my mouth shut just to be on the safe side.

    Furthermore, ok you found no one who knew people who had died yet hundreds did die (because even the Chinese government admits to that). So if you couldn’t find ties to the dead, why does that mean that hundreds died but it’s not possible a thousand or more died? Your conclusion is not logical.

    I once believed that tens of thousands killed on Tiananmen Square and did not believe the number released by the Chinese government. 20 years later I think they may have told the truth.

    Who told you that tens of thousands were killed? I haven’t heard of such figures. Doubtlessly it was a rumour. And, who knows, maybe the Chinese government does have the right figures. But its refusal to debate the subject and for people to even independently search for a full list of those who died means that people will suspect it. If it is right, why does it hound the Tiananmen Mothers? And why doesn’t it release the names of the dead if that is the final list? Many people would guess that it’s because if they admit who did die then it would be easier for people to say “hey, x isn’t on the list, so the figure must be higher”.

    Furthermore, even amongst officials there are disputes. The Chinese government (I believe) says there were deaths of 241 people, including soldiers. Yet a few years ago CPPCC member Chang Ka- mun said the death toll was 300-600. He also said that they died in the Square. This contrasts with government claims that no one died in the Square. Why would he admit to a higher number if the official figure was so convincing?

    To be here at fool’s mountain one has to be a fool.

    Not at all. You just have to allow yourself to consider things you may, at first, think foolish.

    The university name, faculty, grade, and victim’s name can be collected then double checked to rule out repetitions easily.

    Are they public records that anyone could access? Perhaps anyone can access them, but then maybe the lists for 1989 aren’t easily accessible, or you’ll get a visit from the Police if you try to access them.

    I would ask them if I still trust them but now I do not.

    In that case it would seem that you’ve already made your mind up and your question was rhetorical. I thought you did actually want someone to try to answer your questions, which is why I responded.

  11. Charles Liu Says:

    Ming @ 4, “unarmed civilians”

    Please get your facts straight, they were throwing molotov cocktails at the police.

  12. Raj Says:

    Please get your facts straight, they were throwing molotov cocktails at the police.

    What, all the students were throwing them? Not one of the dead was unarmed?

    Charles, why is it so difficult for you to understand that Ming was talking about unarmed civilians who were shot? He was not saying none of the students had weapons.

  13. huaren Says:

    @kui

    Thanks for sharing your personal account. It is an important contribution towards peoples understanding of 6.4.

    For people like Raj, it is a “word game” as you say. I know their crusade is going no where with their retardation. He would disagree. But these discussions are totally open for everyone to judge. :)

  14. Charles Liu Says:

    Raj, please apply the same “collateral damage” rationale we resort to for our own transgressions domestically and internationaly.

    The fact is martial law was declared and curfew was imposed days ahead in Bejing, what are they doing out there? Hurling molotov cocktail? If mobs were violating curfew impoased after Katrina and attacking police with molotov cocktail, first of al you wouldn’t generalize them as “unarmed civilian”, and use of deadly force would be justifiable. Heck, the nickname our military for those humvee mounted guns is “people mower”.

  15. pug_ster Says:

    Kui,

    Thanks for this wonderful essay. I thought this essay was very insightful.

    Raj,

    You think things in terms of black and white. I don’t think that every student, including Kui was throwing molotov cocktails at the police. But somewhere within Beijing, I think we have to agree where some students and workers didn’t protest peacefully and a full scale riot actually took place in parts of beijing. And in any full scale riots, someone is going to get hurt or killed, whether it is the police, protesters, or innocent bystanders. For me, the police had to do what they have to do: to bring order.

  16. Raj Says:

    Charles

    If mobs were violating curfew impoased after Katrina and attacking police with molotov cocktail, first of al you wouldn’t generalize them as “unarmed civilian”, and use of deadly force would be justifiable.

    Use of deadly force would be justifiable against the people throwing the flaming missiles. It wouldn’t give the Police and/or Army the right to open up on the whole crowd.

    You know, you’re so callous for saying that just because some protesters broke the law it was ok for law-abiding people to get gunned down as well.

    pug_ster

    You think things in terms of black and white.

    And you are thinking of things in terms of pure black because your blind to what I’m saying. I have never said that all the students were protesting peacefully. I know they weren’t because I’ve seen pictures of burnt-out Police/Army buses. Now even you wouldn’t believe I would think that was done by the PLA, would you? So if not them, who did it? Duh, oh geez, I can’t think of who would have been responsible…..

    What I did was to explain to Charles what another poster was talking about. Can’t you see that? Really, just stop and re-read the relevant posts I made before you reply.

  17. neutrino Says:

    This is a great read. Thank you, Kui, for sharing your experiences.
    There is no doubt in my mind that the majority of the students participated in the movement out of good intention. The immediate sad ending, (its long term effect, could still prove positive for the development of the Chinese society), however, is the result of over-the-top ambition of some student leaders, and the incompetence and the paranoid of the CCP leadership, Zhao, Li, and deng all included.

    The reason I say that some student leaders harbor over-the-top ambition is based on my conversation with one of the leader that was on the original top 20 wanted list. He also claimed that the CCP out-maneuvered the students by only putting the so-so student leaders on the list, diverting the attention of the overseas media, while the more talented and dangerous ones are dealt with quietly and most of them remained unknown to the outside worlds. He, however, did not try to hide his own ambition of attaining power and continue on that front til this day. He also never shied away from passing chilling messages towards his perceived enemies (including colleagues that now work with him). If this is the kind of leaders that were active then, I have to say the students did not follow the right group of leaders if they wanted to achieve something great for the country. OF course, they did not have choices at the time and we can not blame the students.

    The government did not have to let the chaos to continue for as long as it did. The CCP leadership misled the students with false hopes, and in the end the CCP internal power struggle manifested with the student/civilian/soldier casualties. So, for the government to portray itself as the salvation (again) in the movement terribly went wrong is a cover-up for its own incompetence to say the least.

    I want to make the point that tends to be overlooked, that is the student movement had not only some overseas support, but also internal CCP leadership support, and more so in the latter form. This student leader that I talked with told me that the students ended up being pawns of the CCP power struggle. In the Zhao memoir, while it is pretty clear for me that Zhao is trying to paint his own legacy in the most positive way, it is also clear that he tried to take advantage of the naivety of the students (not the student leaders). For me, Zhao, Li, Deng and the student leaders were equally responsible for the many lives lost. There is absolutely no need for anyone to portray Zhao as some sort of a martyr.

  18. pug_ster Says:

    I hate to point a finger but somehow the CIA and NED are probably involved in this. Ralph McGehee wrote some books and some articles of how they got involved in CIA/NED sponsored pro-democracy movement within China that ultimately failed. Of course, there’s no proof of anything of what that guy said, but it does make some sense.

    http://www.friendsoftibet.org/databank/usdefence/usd4.html

    http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/55/765.html

  19. Charles Liu Says:

    Raj @ 16, “It wouldn’t give the Police and/or Army the right to open up on the whole crowd.” tell that to all the innocent Iraqis that got mowed down in Basra – few people fired and everybody got mowed down.

    There was a mini-civil war, and the people on the ground made decisions. Not everyone on the streets were shot at, and based on available evidence, according to Jay Mathews at CJR, no one died in TAM SQ that night.

    Why is it we can claim “collateral damage” but not them? You know full well our own police would use deadly force if confronted in the same fashion, while our police have used deadly force under less urgent circumstance (London subway, SF Bart transit shooting.)

    Your duplicity is obviousely due to your agenda to demonize China.

    Pug_ster @ 18, the CIA/DIA operative Col. Robert Helvey stated he trained the 6/4 student leaders in HK.

  20. Mark Anthony Jones Says:

    A fascinating recount Kui. I found your text to be very informative and moving, and since I consider your recall to be a primary source, I shall draw on some of your insights when crafting Part II of my essay – which I am now roughly one-third of the way through writing.

  21. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Charles:
    “Why is it we can claim “collateral damage” but not them?” – when the CCP, as the good dad, deem the Chinese people (ie. its kids) to have acquired the requisite emotional wherewithal to have an adult discussion about the events in question, maybe you’ll see that phrase thrown in somewhere within the official account. For now, tough to claim anything about something that receives nothing in terms of official discourse.

    The other aspect is that Basra/Baghdad/Kandahar etc are war zones. Don’t really hear about collateral damage in reference to dealing with a riot. I suppose you can get around that by saying it was a “mini-civil war”, one where one side had molotov’s, and the other side had tanks. So even there, it looks like there was “damage”, but not so much “collateral”.

    BTW, why the urge to canonize China all the time.

    The tube was bombed, and I don’t recall the Brits mowing down civilians in the aftermath. The Bart incident was one guy…never should have happened, but hardly a comparable.

  22. Raj Says:

    tell that to all the innocent Iraqis that got mowed down in Basra

    Yes, Charles, and did the government cover it up? Did it chase after any independent-minded reporters that didn’t engage in Republican propaganda? Did it treat the victims like criminals? Do you see me defending it and saying that Chinese should keep their noses out of American business?

    Once again you display your insensitivity towards the victims of the crackdown in 1989. In your mind because a democratic country commits wrong-doings then China can treat its citizens how it likes. What a disgraceful position to take.

  23. jed Says:

    Good read, it looks like the events of June 4 will be discussed for long to come.

    Be interested to know from posters what type of event in China could precipitate a similar gathering of students. Due to China’s development in the last 20 years, access to the internet, rise in international prominance and the deterioration as the US as a bastion of “freedom”….it is highly likely that the political consciousness of today’s students are a lot different from those of 1989.

    Any thoughts?

  24. kui Says:

    Raj

    I am loosing interest in this talk. Since I did not really explain how was the search conducted I will talk a bit further. Each dormitory room at our college was designed to accomadate 7 students. Immediately after we started our new semester, my roommates and I started our knocking door search. The search was done mostly at time around 1300-1400 and 2200-2230. Usually you find all 7 students in the room at around 1300-1400 taking a nap before PM lectures. The college had a rule that all lights must be turned off at 2230. So, most of students had returned to the dormitory by 10pm. We knocked doors at around that time to physically check if all 7 students were there. Plus asking a question(大家都好吗?) When there were students absent from the room then we had a look if the beddings and personal belongings were there. The rooms that had all 7 students there got crossed out from our list. The rooms that had ? mark was later double checked. Raj, all students post 6.4 knew that there were students killed on that day, many students did some sort of search at least tried to find out the wellbeing of their friends from the the same town, same high school. This topic was openly talked among students. There were several student CCP members in our faculty, they did not act any differently from the other students during the student movement. I expanded my search to the other universities and colleges mainly through my friends and high school classmates. Usually they give a confirmed answer that was good enough to cover their faculties. My roommates did the same. Over the 2 years peroid we managed to cover most of universities and colleges in Tianjin and most of faculties within them. I do not rule out the possibility that we simply missed a victim/victims within a faculty at a certain college or university. But that possibility is quite remote. As I said before news flies among universities and colleges.

  25. kui Says:

    Raj, one more thing, the CCP and Chinese government are far from being transparent, open and democratic. There are always some leftie hardliners there try to block off every thing. They are stupid indeed. This will be sorted out by their own liberal part of the party. Raj. I believe it was not only me who want to ask our former leaders some questions. For so many years I did not have the opportunities to do so. It is no longer important to me because their actions and inactions over these years have already served very well as answers.

  26. barny chan Says:

    Charles Liu Says :”Why is it we can claim “collateral damage” but not them? You know full well our own police would use deadly force if confronted in the same fashion, while our police have used deadly force under less urgent circumstance (London subway, SF Bart transit shooting.)”

    Charles, over on another thread I asked the following question: A certain amount of violence might have been inevitable, but, even if we accept the official Chinese government figures for casualties, can you think of a comparable western government response to internal protest in recent history?

    Curiously, nobody responded. Maybe you will.

  27. tommydickfingers Says:

    what’s the big deal? kui claims no students from Tianjin were killed on 6.4. And?

    What does that add to the overall discussion, apart from another unsubstantiated source for MAJ to include in his continuing mission to prove that the majority of those killed were “armed” and “militant” workers? Again, it is all leading to argument by implicit suggestion – “no students from Tianjin were among the dead, therefore..etc, etc”

    Raj: “Use of deadly force would be justifiable against the people throwing the flaming missiles.”

    can’t agree with this. take away the word “deadly” and you might be onto something.

  28. Truth Says:

    Folks, 3,000 people were killed on June 3 – 4, and Charles Liu is working for the CCP.

  29. Charles Liu Says:

    Raj @ 22, “did the government cover it up?” Show me where did the British government publish casualty count and names of dead from Basara? You demanded the same thing of the Chinese, yet we can’t live up to it ouselves. Bush didn’t even allow Iraqi casualty study by the puppet Iraqi government. How about casualty count and list of name for Irish civilians killed?

    I know my government will never own up, or held accountable for the Fallujah Massacre. Pot, meet kettle.

    Barny @ 26, that’s easy – military supression of Bonus Army.

    Hey Foarse @ 27, here’s a quote from Raj’s own cite, US State Dept briefing on 6/4:

    “thousands of civilians stood their ground or swarmed around military vehicles. APCs were set on fire, and demonstrators besieged troops with rocks, bottles, and Molotov cocktails.”

    Right, and Ming calls them “unarmed civilians”. If this happened in New Orleans after Katrina, the much better equiped Blackwater mercenaries sent by George W Bush would’ve killed them all.

  30. barny chan Says:

    Charles Liu Says: “Barny @ 26, that’s easy – military supression of Bonus Army.”

    Charley, what do you think the death toll from government action against the Bonus Marchers was? You’d have been smarter to come up with the Waco Massacre…

  31. Charles Liu Says:

    Barny, please do you own homework from now on. I gave you a search link, had you actually looked, you’d notice our own government did not release credible casualty figure or list of names. For example:

    We will never know the true death toll from the violent military suppression of the Bonus Marchers.

    there have been no anniversary remembrances and there is no monument in Washington, DC, to the victims.

    Most Americans have never heard of the Bonus Army and its fate.

    Tell me, Barny, did we try unarmed troops to clear the bonum marchers? The Chinese troops were initially unarmed, and got their asses handed to them by Ming’s “unarmed civilians”, no doubt as innocent as the newborn kittens they were cuddling at the time.

  32. barny chan Says:

    Charley, nobody’s claiming (other than you by implication) that the direct action by government forces against the Bonus Marchers came close to paralleling even the most conservative estimates for the death toll on June 4.

  33. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Sigh. It seems Charles was well-schooled in the compare and contrast exercises of adolescent education. It seems he may be a little less willing to simply discuss one thing at a time…like China, for instance. Funny, since that’s what this blog seems to be for.

    “rocks, bottles, and Molotov cocktails.” – quite the arsenal with which to march into a “mini-civil war”, eh? Nothing like civilians armed to the teeth with rocks. If only the NRA took that view of the second amendment…

    “Hey Foarse @ 27″ – dude, CLC/admin has shown quite the capacity for sniffing out those who try to comment with multiple aliases. So I think you need to give that a rest already. Besides, i don’t think either FOARP or TommyD would need the help of an alias before having a go at your delicate sensibilities.

  34. huaren Says:

    @SKC, Raj, and other buffoons

    Stop your nonsense. So, could you summarize what you are trying to say about 6.4?

    I recognize that you are getting all bent out of shape by first accounts such as kui’s and by MAJ’s comprehensive compilation of facts.

    Have you noticed people are not dignifying your lame arguments by not debating with you? (Of course exception here is Charles and kui. Of course, also, the idiot in me, hoping to see what other steamy pile of crap may come out of your mouths.)

  35. Raj Says:

    Charles

    Show me where did the British government publish casualty count and names of dead from Basara?

    Which dead? The British government doesn’t have the names of everyone ever killed in Basra because it’s not the government of Iraq. The Iraqi government on the other hand does release the names of people who die.

    Whereas there is no other authority in China other than the Chinese government/CCP.

    You demanded the same thing of the Chinese, yet we can’t live up to it ouselves.

    Depending on what you’re talking about, we can live up to it. And we don’t arrest and put people under house arrest for trying to research those figures. The British and American newspapers can discuss the very legality of the war itself, not just specific deaths. That’s a damn-sight more than the Chinese government allows.

    How about casualty count and list of name for Irish civilians killed?

    If you want to talk about specific killings, for Bloody Sunday there IS a list of the dead. Geez, you really are ignorant.

  36. colin Says:

    I agree whole heartedly agree that Raj and SKC are buffoons! :)

    Everyone just ignore them and let’s have some real discussion.

    This article is a nice personal account.

  37. Think Ming! Says:

    Fools Mountain becomes more and more hopeless. . .

    The quality of the responses to Raj, S.K. Cheung and myself says it all. . .

  38. Raj Says:

    huaren (34), if some people here are too cowardly to discuss the issues with us politely because they can’t counter them (except by seeking to change the discussion, throw mud or ignore the points we’re making) that’s their call. But it invalidates what I understand to be the point of this website.

    Is Fools Mountain a place to exchange different ideas. or for blinkered Chinese nationalists to massage their egos and feel good about events in Chinese history/China today that can’t be justified? You can choose the latter if you like, but SKC, myself and others would like the former.

  39. kui Says:

    jed.

    Unhappy China (中国不高兴) is a popular book written by Chinese intellectuals. At least it tells what educated Chinese think of their country.

  40. pug_ster Says:

    huaren (34), if some people here are too cowardly to discuss the issues with us politely because they can’t counter them (except by seeking to change the discussion, throw mud or ignore the points we’re making) that’s their call. But it invalidates what I understand to be the point of this website.

    Is Fools Mountain a place to exchange different ideas. or for blinkered Chinese nationalists to massage their egos and feel good about events in Chinese history/China today that can’t be justified? You can choose the latter if you like, but SKC, myself and others would like the former.

    FM is a place to exchange different ideas, but some people here just want to complain about the evil CCP, and how innocent people are shot in cold blood like beating a dead horse.

  41. Jed Says:

    @kui

    I’ll have to read it, I’ll assume the main theme is that “China is not happy” and it will go on and on and on and on how everything wrong in China is due to the West , and foreigners and , 200 years of humiliation that is to be followed by 200 years of victim complexes.

    If memory serves me correct one of the authors was a contributor to the book “China can say No!” : in which one of my favourite passages from that book was the logic that China was more civilized than the West because they used chopsticks – not knives and forks – and oh yeah ice hockey was invented in China.

  42. barny chan Says:

    Raj Says: “Is Fools Mountain a place to exchange different ideas. or for blinkered Chinese nationalists to massage their egos and feel good about events in Chinese history/China today that can’t be justified?”

    Not sure if your question is rhetorical, but, if not, it’s the latter. Fool’s Mountain is a Chinese racial supremacist website thinly veiled as a discussion forum. My occasional contribution here stems solely from the desire to disabuse people in the west of the notion that all young Chinese men are self-pitying inadequates filled with impotent rage.

  43. pug_ster Says:

    @Barny Chan,

    Not sure if your question is rhetorical, but, if not, it’s the latter. Fool’s Mountain is a Chinese racial supremacist website thinly veiled as a discussion forum. My occasional contribution here stems solely from the desire to disabuse people in the west of the notion that all young Chinese men are self-pitying inadequates filled with impotent rage.

    It reminds me of a quote from the Quantum of Solace movie where Mathis said to Bond:
    “When one is young it seems so very easy to distinguish between right and wrong. But as one gets older it becomes more difficult, the villains and the heroes get all mixed up.”

    I think it applies to some of the students who protested in the Tianamen square incident and it seems that Kui reflects on what he thought 20 years ago. I was once like that too when I thought that US was right to condemn China for the Tianamen Square incident but not now. Barney, perhaps you think it is so easy to distinguish from what is right and wrong and how others like Kui and how other people don’t want to describe it as right and wrong.

  44. colin Says:

    For SKC, Raj and other buffoons,

    If you don’t like the comments here, then get lost. The purpose of this blog was to give an alternative and more balanced view of chinese issues in contrast to the usually biased western media portrayal of china. You dumbasses want to make this another china bashing site. There are plenty of other blogs who’s main goal is to ridicule and demonize china, for example that peking duck idiot. Just waste your time there and get the f*ck out of here.

    But of course you won’t, will you?

  45. Charles Liu Says:

    Barny, I ain’t from Mainland China, ain’t never been citizen of the PRC a day in my life. I’m and old dude that really don’t have a fight in this, other than simply fed up with all this China bashing and decided to speak up for the 1 billion people that are voiceless in our society.

    Looks like you may need to reexamine the source of your inadequacy and impotent rage – we ain’t the ones that feel the need to pleas them old m’asas, or lock step with America’s “official narrative” of China.

  46. admin Says:

    @colin

    I want to reiterate that this blog encourages discussion and debate. I don’t like to delete posts or ban users. But I hope you appreciate that personal attacks and using foul languages are detrimental to any meaningful dialogue. Thank you for your understanding.

  47. Charles Liu Says:

    Raj, take look at how your “give a good slap” contribution jive with the “exchange different ideas” ideal you’re now exholting.

  48. Raj Says:

    colin

    The purpose of this blog was to give an alternative and more balanced view of chinese issues in contrast to the usually biased western media portrayal of china.

    When you say “alternative”, do you mean “the same drivel as on other Chinese nationalist boards”?

    Charles

    Raj, take look at how your “give a good slap” contribution jive with the “exchange different ideas” ideal you’re now exholting.

    If someone like yourself belittles the memory of innocent victims by saying it’s their fault they got killed or it was necessary too bad you got caught in the middle, then that person deserves a slap. You can exchange ideas without disgracing the memory of dead innocents to further a nationalist view.

  49. Charles Liu Says:

    Raj, “Innocent”? Let’s look at the facts – martial law and curfew was in place for nearly two weeks, dozens of initially unarmed soilders were killed, APCs were torched.

    If this happened during Katrina, what do think GW Bush’s Blackwater mercernaries would’ve done if this happened in New Orleans after Katrina? We can absolutely tell by what we have done in Basara, Fallujah.

    Why do you feel you have the right to slap anyone, when you are willfuly ignoring facts of the case? Do you automagically know better? Your opinion is superior than those Chinese subhumans who actially lived it?

  50. Raj Says:

    Raj, “Innocent”? Let’s look at the facts – martial law and curfew was in place for nearly two weeks, dozens of initially unarmed soilders were killed, APCs were torched.

    So they were ALL guilty? They were ALL attacking soldiers? The hell they were. A relatively small number caused trouble but the majority were acting peacefully.

    And because there was martial law it was ok to start shooting people? Is that what you’re saying? You use lethal force if you have no choice. You don’t shoot someone because they’re not obeying a curfew.

    Your opinion is superior than those Chinese subhumans who actially lived it?

    Charles, don’t bullshit me. You weren’t there and you don’t know whether those who died had been protesting peacefully or restored to violence. You don’t even live in China – and I believe you’re an American citizen, not a Chinese one. So don’t pull the “well I’m Chinese so I automatically know more than you do about China” rubbish.

    Why do you feel you have the right to slap anyone

    Because, Charles, you’re a disgrace. You care nothing for those dead people, just because you disagree with their political aims.

    As much as I might disagree with the views of someone like Allen on occasion, I would never slap him around because he at least gives the impression he cares about other people. You, on the other hand, don’t show that sort of sympathy.

  51. huaren Says:

    @Raj, #50

    LOL. As a Chinese, my opinion is you take your “sympathy” and shove it where only YOU dare dig! :)

  52. Raj Says:

    As a Chinese [emphasis added], my opinion is you take your “sympathy” and shove it where only YOU dare dig!

    huaren, remind me – do you live in America or China? No one would want to think you were one of those foreigners who pontificate about what Chinese people do and don’t want, yet don’t share their experiences on a day-to-day basis.

  53. Charles Liu Says:

    Raj, you are the one that bullsh!tting people:

    “So they were ALL guilty?” – Were they ALL innocent?

    “They were ALL attacking soldiers?” – They were ALL shot? The hell they were.

    “because there was martial law it was ok to start shooting people?” – The troops showed great restraint; soilders were initially unarmed, and two dozen were killed by the violent mob. That led to the esclation in force. Mind you, nearly two weeks had gone by since declaration of martial law.

    “You weren’t there” – you weren’t there either. But the eyewitness Jay Mathews cited were there, Ho Dejian was there, Graham Earnshaw was there.

    “You don’t even live in China” – How long have you lived in China? I bet I’ve spent more time in China than you.

    Raj, you’re the disgrace here – because you have nothing for the 1.3 billion that are still living. Just look at your reply to Huaren. The Chinese know better than you about their own country, so get over your superiority complex.

  54. huaren Says:

    @Raj,

    “No one would want to think you were one of those foreigners who pontificate about what Chinese people do and don’t want, yet don’t share their experiences on a day-to-day basis.”

    Exactly! And you have the nerve to say that to me! You are killing me!

    A Chinese citizen cannot live in the USA? That’s another new one for you, isn’t it!

    Monkey logic.

  55. Raj Says:

    Charles

    “So they were ALL guilty?” – Were they ALL innocent?

    So if one is guilty they all deserve to die?!

    “They were ALL attacking soldiers?” – They were ALL shot? The hell they were.

    Oh, I’m sure the ones that died killed themselves. They wrested the guns off the PLA soldiers and committed suicide to pretend the government wanted to kill them!

    “because there was martial law it was ok to start shooting people?” – The troops showed great restraint; soilders were initially unarmed, and two dozen were killed by the violent mob. That led to the esclation in force.

    You didn’t answer my question. You alleged the fact there was martial law made it ok to start killing people. Now you’re changing the story to allege because some soldiers were killed, students had to be killed in response.

    “You weren’t there” – you weren’t there either. But the eyewitness Jay Mathews cited were there, Ho Dejian was there, Graham Earnshaw was there.

    And do they say that the PLA didn’t kill a single person wrongfully? That all the people killed were rioters? That excessive force was not used at any point? Lots of people were in Beijing, including Jiang Yanyong.

    http://chinadigitaltimes.net/2004/03/dr-jiang-yanyongs-letter-calling-for-june-4-reappraisal/

    In 1989, students in Beijing, in view of the corrupt government at that time, voiced their just demand for fighting corruption and bureaucratic racketeering and for promoting clean and honest government. The students’ patriotic acts had the support of the overwhelming majority of people in Beijing and the country. However, a small number of leaders who supported corruption resorted to means unprecedented in the world and in China. They acted in a frenzied fashion, using tanks, machineguns, and other weapons to suppress the totally unarmed students and citizens, killing hundreds of innocent students in Beijing, and injuring and crippling thousands others.”

    “You don’t even live in China” – How long have you lived in China? I bet I’ve spent more time in China than you.

    How long have you lived in China?

    I wouldn’t be surprised if you’ve spent more time in China, but I never said you hadn’t. I challenged you on the fact you don’t live there now, nor have Chinese nationality – do you? You don’t live there, you don’t suffer any of the problems of the current political system. You say Chinese people have to carry on as they are now whilst you have all the comforts of living in a democracy.

    Raj, you’re the disgrace here – because you have nothing for the 1.3 billion that are still living.

    Lol, you’re talking out of your backside, Charles! I care more for them than you do. I believe they are intelligent and responsible enough to make their own decisions and not have foreign-dwelling “Chinese” and the CCP tell them what’s best for them. The Chinese people are adults, not children. They should be allowed to discuss the issues they feel are important, not have people like you telling them what the “right” history is and that they can’t buy this book in the shops or access that website because it’s “wrong”.

    Just look at your reply to Huaren. The Chinese know better than you about their own country

    Charles, do you have anything to say that isn’t Chinese nationalist propaganda? I’m sure there are Chinese people who know more than me on every single topic about China. But there are Chinese people who don’t know as much as me on some topics. Otherwise I would never have any information to share with them – which I do. Not everyone knows who Zhao Ziyang is. Not everyone knows about the Tank Man. There’s always something people can learn about. Only an idiot would think otherwise.

    +++

    huaren

    A Chinese citizen cannot live in the USA? That’s another new one for you, isn’t it!

    You share the experiences of Chinese people on a day-to-day basis whilst being in America, do you? How do you manage that – use of a TARDIS?

    Monkey logic.

    I believe under the Chinese zodiac monkeys are regarded as being clever. So I’ll take that as a compliment. :D Unless of course you meant it as a racial slur. ;)

  56. Wahaha Says:

    Charles, over on another thread I asked the following question: A certain amount of violence might have been inevitable, but, even if we accept the official Chinese government figures for casualties, can you think of a comparable western government response to internal protest in recent history?

    Curiously, nobody responded. Maybe you will.

    Barny Chan,

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/May_1968

    While the government appeared to be close to collapse, de Gaulle remained firm, though he had to go into hiding. After ensuring that he had sufficient loyal military units mobilized to back him if push came to shove, he went on the radio the following day (the national television service was on strike) to announce the dissolution of the National Assembly, with elections to follow on 23 June. He ordered workers to return to work, threatening to institute a state of emergency if they did not.

    From that point, the revolutionary feeling of the students and workers faded away. Workers gradually returned to work or were ousted from their plants by the police. The national student union called off street demonstrations. The government banned a number of leftist organizations. The police retook the Sorbonne on 16 June. De Gaulle triumphed in the legislative elections held in June, and the crisis came to an end. Bastille Day saw resurgent street demonstrations in the Latin Quarter, led by red arm-band leftist and black arm-band anarchist students, resulting in much bloodshed among many students and tourists there for the evening’s festivities, caused by brutal repression by the Paris police and the CRS starting around 10pm and continuing through the night, …

  57. Wahaha Says:

    @Raj, #50

    Your “sympathy” is a disgrace to the students in 1989, as students wanted good out of their demostration but what you wants is that the worst happans to China.

    So, F@#$ off.

  58. barny chan Says:

    Oh dear, so much patriotism, so little historical knowledge/context.

    OK Wahaha, Charley Liu offered up the Bonus Army and I was kind enough to offer him in return the much better example of the American government response to the Waco siege. Your example of Mai 68 (any idea of the casualty figures?) isn’t even as good as Charley’s, but in the spirit of reconciliation I’ll offer you:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paris_massacre_of_1961

    A far more disturbing and brutal example of French state violence against innocent people.

    Don’t say I never do anything to help you…

  59. Wahaha Says:

    Lol,

    funny, who needs help? read again :

    From that point, the revolutionary feeling of the students and workers faded away. Workers gradually returned to work or were ousted from their plants by the police. The national student union called off street demonstrations.

    and you ask me for casulty number ?

    also massacre of 1961 was not started by students, for god sake.

  60. barny chan Says:

    Yes, I’m asking you for figures. You’re claiming that Mai 68 is a “comparable western government response to internal protest”. You know as well as I do that this is nonsense (well, maybe you dont, maybe you really are that ignorant).

    You can hide behind all the “lols” and claims that my point is “funny” as much as you want, but it’s clear even to the Tiananmen apologists here (despite what they’ll admit) that you’ve talked yourself into an unsustainable position. Despite the desperate bravado, you can’t but be aware you’ve made a fool of yourself.

    I’m delighted that you, Shane, Charles, and all the other racially-over-identifying super-patriots keep coming back and discrediting yourselves. I’m starting to think that Fool’s Mountain is a subtle Soros-funded front to make the case for democratic change in China.

  61. shane9219 Says:

    @barny chan

    You got a real problem of foul attitude, have you realized that? To be helpful to everyone else on this forum, it is better for you to present your POVs with facts and good reasoning. Insisting on what your own thinking without any factual support just a waste of time.

  62. barny chan Says:

    Shane, unlike you and a number of others I have no need to resort to crass abuse. You’re finding this uncomfortable because of the unsustainability of your position.

  63. S.K. Cheung Says:

    You know, I’ve suggested many times that I think this is a great board. It attracts mostly intelligent people who can vigorously debate stuff about which they fundamentally disagree, all the while without becoming entirely disagreeable.

    I’ve been around longer than many of you, and I must say that I learned a great deal from the regular commentators in the early days. For certain, I’ve modified my thinking as a result. Unfortunately, some of those individuals have moved on, hopefully to other fulfilling pursuits. And the most discouraging thing is that they’ve been replaced by a less sophisticated form of the human species, with whom interactions can be far more entertaining, but far less educational. Hopefully some of the early icons will see fit to swing around these parts again down the road.

    In the meantime, just like to say how some people’s use of the f-word fascinates me. I’ve always wondered why new English speakers like to sprinkle that word so freely into their day-to-day discourse. I can only imagine that they think it adds gravitas to their opinion, and can’t help but feel some pity that they have yet to realize that they are sadly mistaken.

    So to the Colin’s and Huaren’s of this space, I can only advise that I’m here for the foreseeable future. And since I’ve yet to be censored (unlike you two fine specimens), or had my wrists slapped by Admin, I reckon I won’t face significant impediments. And the least of all would be blokes like you.

    So if my rebuttals, or Raj’s or Barny’s more eloquent ones, cause you any discomfort, well, they should. And if you were adults, you would respond with rebuttals of your own. The other stuff you two have managed in the last 24 hours is just weak, and thoroughly unbecoming of self-respecting individuals. But perhaps I’ve assumed too much…

  64. huaren Says:

    @SKC
    “For certain, I’ve modified my thinking as a result.”
    If you have gone from a “black and white” crusader to a more “nuanced” crusader, what’s the difference?

    Your language in #63 sounds exactly like some of the European settlers (the nasty variety) when they first arrived in North America: you foul souls, we shall taketh your possessions and giveth salvation.

    In my opinion, the wise on this forum have been insanely patient with your sinister types.

    Don’t forget – the Chinese will need to be convinced of your religion – not the other way around. Otherwise your agenda ain’t gonna be fullfilled. Catch my drift?

  65. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Hey, I’d say I’ve become a more nuanced supporter of the concept of democracy than you have become a nuanced CCP apologist. I’ve no interest in convincing you. In case you haven’t noticed, your opinion is of absolutely no consequence to me.

    BTW, when you refer to “the wise on this forum”, I’m hoping you’re not including yourself. That would be funny.

    And if you think #63 is nasty, gosh, you’ve really never seen anything, have you? If democracy is to be fulfilled one day in China, it will most certainly be accomplished in spite of folks like you.

  66. huaren Says:

    @SKC,

    “BTW, when you refer to “the wise on this forum”, I’m hoping you’re not including yourself.”

    I am definitely not wise. I was referring to people like JXie, Allen, MAJ, et al.

    “And if you think #63 is nasty, gosh, you’ve really never seen anything, have you?”

    Don’t scare me.

    Remember the last point in my previous comment. You are doing a lousy job on that department. :(

  67. S.K. Cheung Says:

    When Allen isn’t on vacation, he’s constantly rebutting my points. And it seems every time I’ve asked a question of MAJ, he’s responded. JXIe seems to respond regularly too, if not always in a timely fashion; he’s probably a busy guy. So if “the wise” in your book have no problem, what’s yours?

    Perhaps debate is not your strength. Mind telling me what is? (and I’m hoping it’s not your command of four letter words starting with “f”).

  68. admin Says:

    @barny chan #60

    In case you haven’t figured this out, Fool’s Mountain is funded by Mr. Hu Jintao’s personal secretary.

    And before you rush into compare and contrast stuff, could you please educate me if there has been a similar protest in scale and length in western countries?

  69. barny chan Says:

    Admin, my money’s still on this being a Soros-inspired honeytrap to catch unwitting patriots.

    A protest of a similar scale and length? Sticking to the last six months I’d go for the Greek uprising.

  70. Raj Says:

    barny, it’s also worth noting that with the Greek civil unrest there was a lot more violence earlier on. There was rioting even in the first few days, attacks on local businesses, arson and Police injuries. Although there were some peaceful protests, really it was a series of riots and general lawlessness.

    Did the Greek Police start opening up with guns on crowds? Was the Greek Army sent in? I haven’t tried to research this matter, but I don’t believe so. I remember the Police being sued by some people who had been arrested for “excessive” use of tear gas. Not much else. Barny, could you refresh my memory – any protesters shot and killed by the Greek authorities?

  71. barny chan Says:

    …And for a state reaction on par with that of China on June 4 I’d offer up the earlier mentioned Paris massacre of 61. Not only was the brutality arguably as bad, but the subsequent denials and cover-up offer a direct parallel:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paris_massacre_of_1961

    It’s strange that this event is so seldom discussed.

  72. barny chan Says:

    Raj, the trigger in Greece was a police shooting and killing of a teenage boy.

  73. barny chan Says:

    …But no subsequent mass state killing despite anarchists opening fire on police.

  74. admin Says:

    Greek riots 2008 might be comparable to Xi’an riots (4/22 incident) before 6/4 or Chengdu riots after 6/4, but it is not even close to what happened in Beijing where a million people took the streets and the martial law was defied for two weeks.

    A more convincing argument against using military force is that, in many, many Chinese cities, large scale protests ended peacefully. Particularly in Shanghai, there were no casualties besides 5 people were run over by a railway train. Zhu Rongji made it clear that Shanghai would not need army to maintain control. You have to give Jiang and Zhu credit for their management skills.

  75. Raj Says:

    barny, I knew about the immediate cause of the unrest, but thanks for confirming (unless someone else has evidence to the contrary) that there was no lethal crackdown. Do you know if any protesters were killed at all?

  76. barny chan Says:

    Admin, you’re either being disingenuous or you simply have no conception of the extent and seriousness of the events in Greece.

  77. Raj Says:

    admin, barny is right. What happened in Greece was of extreme seriousness – some commentators were even worried it would spill out into other countries and cause a regional crisis. Certainly there were corresponding protests/unrest at certain times. In the UK alone around 100 people tried to storm the Greek embassy in London.

    Remember that China and Greece are quite different (certainly the Greece of today compared to the China of 1989). Maybe you think what happened in Greece was par for the course, but for Europe it was intense. Remember that the populations of Greece and Athens are much smaller than those of China and Beijing were 20 years ago.

    At the least you could say why they’re different.

  78. admin Says:

    Well, I am not the one who said that is these two events are comparable. The onus is on the person who made the comparison.

    Athens is smaller than Beijing, but did one tenth of the population get involved in the protest?

    I did not experience the Greek riots, but I am fully aware the extent and seriousness of the events in 1989 since I was there. Have you been to either of the two events?

  79. Raj Says:

    Well, I am not the one who said that is these two events are comparable. The onus is on the person who made the comparison.

    You said they were not comparable by a significant margin. If you want to withdraw your earlier comment, you can do so. Otherwise, if barny has to substantiate his assertion, so do you. Though you only asked him for a comparable event originally so you can’t expect him to have predicted you would have disputed it.

    Athens is smaller than Beijing, but did one tenth of the population get involved in the riots?

    One tenth of the Beijing population was not rioting in 1989. If it had been the city would have been left in ruins. Surely you’re not suggesting protesting alone justified the crackdown in Beijing?

    Have you been to either of the two events?

    No, I haven’t. But what makes you think I don’t understand the importance of the 1989 protests?

  80. admin Says:

    Raj,

    Reread my comment, I already modified it before you posted yours.

    Comparison, scale: Beijing 1/10 population at least, Athens 1/100 population involved at most. Length: Beijing 7 weeks, Athens, half of that.

    If you have been to this forum long enough, or even looking back to PKD days, my position has always been the crackdown was wrong and sending tanks to TAM was repulsive. However, I do have a more nuanced view on this event and it doesn’t hurt to have less people pontificating from their moral high horses.

  81. Raj Says:

    Admin

    Reread my comment, I already modified it before you posted yours.

    Ok, but you hadn’t while I was posting, which is why I didn’t pick up on it. Thanks for clarifying.

    Comparison, scale: Beijing 1/10 population at least, Athens 1/100 population involved at most. Length: Beijing 7 weeks, Athens, half of that.

    Thanks for making some comparisons so I can understand your thinking on this issue.

    The unrest did continue in Athens after the third week, even if it may have calmed down a bit. The last significant protest in Athens was the 9th January, though there were some others in other parts of Greece. But in any case I don’t think straight comparisons of length are necessarily helpful, because what happened in Greece was “hot” right from the start.

    Instead things in Beijing, as of course you would know, were much more peaceful at the start. The Chinese government had the luxury of not having to act for some time, whereas the Greek authorities had no time to consider what to do.

    As for numbers of people involved, you’re probably right that proportionally more people were involved in Beijing – I’m not sure how many people were on the streets of Athens at any one time. However, I still think that if you look at the wider picture there is still a valid comparison to be made. There was a heck of a lot of sustained violence with attacks against the Police and the State more generally. Greek newspapers called it the worst thing the country had seen since the end of the rule of the Colonels.

    However, I do have a more nuanced view on this event and it doesn’t hurt to have less people pontificating from their moral high horses.

    I would agree, and I don’t seek to pontificate. I don’t know if you thought barny was doing that, but from my perspective he was just making a straight comparison as you asked.

  82. Raj Says:

    By the way, admin, your views are interesting so I hope you will try to make the time to express them more frequently in the future. I fully understand that you’re busy most of the time, of course.

  83. admin Says:

    The protests in 1989 were actually widespread. In cities like Xi’an, Changsha, and Chengdu, the situation was “hot” early on. In Beijing, it was largely peaceful until the very end. To my understanding, the decision to use lethal force, in a vaguely worded order “to take any means necessary to reach assigned positions at the predetermined time” was reached at noon on June 3.

    By the way, you may be surprised that former Chinese premier LiPeng, might support your call for more discussion on 6/4 in China. He tried to publish a book on this topic in 2004 but was not allowed to do it.

    Last year, DJ posted a one liner on 6/4. It’s not really my view, but something close.
    http://blog.foolsmountain.com/2008/06/05/six-four-a-simplistic-view-of-64/

  84. Raj Says:

    Yeah, I heard about the protests outside of Beijing. As was mentioned earlier the different responses taken towards them are interesting.

    I had heard that Li Peng was planning to publish his memoirs, but I assumed it hadn’t been popular (otherwise I expected one of my Chinese friends would have said something about it). Having looked into it now, it seems that he wanted to change how he’s been viewed over the event.

    I have wondered what Li’s role in 1989 was. He certainly wanted to use those events to get rid of Zhao, and I don’t think he can easily argue he had no role in calling for martial law. So maybe he wanted to say that he hadn’t expected the use of lethal force or not to the extent that it was. It’s hard to know what he was willing to acknowledge about the events. Reportedly he was willing to make changes, so the fact their release was still blocked suggests that the Party didn’t want any public discussion of the protests.

    Either way, looking at it now it’s highy ironic that he’s been censored by a system that he had a role in creating/supporting by helping cripple the “reformist” wing of the CCP all those years ago. I wonder if he appreciates that….

  85. barny chan Says:

    admin Says: “I am not the one who said that is these two events are comparable.”

    And neither, as you’re well aware am I. You asked me “could you please educate me if there has been a similar protest in scale and length in western countries?” While in terms of proportionate scale and in length these protests are comparable, clearly, in absolute terms, a challenge to a small European country is not comparable to a challenge to a vast authoritarian state. I really am suspecting you of disingenuous behaviour now.

    “The onus is on the person who made the comparison.”

    The onus is shared equally by us to make our respective cases, but I’ll do what I can.

    “Athens is smaller than Beijing, but did one tenth of the population get involved in the protest?”

    Well, something we can agree on: Athens is indeed smaller than Beijing. But this wasn’t an “Athens riot” (did you really not know this?), it was a violent countrywide uprising against both the government and the forces of law and order. Proportionately, more people were involved both as protagonists and victims of the unrest than in China. Greece’s already weak economy crashed, and, within the context of the global economic crisis the government would have had a very real justification for the use of greater force to quell the violence, not least because of pressure from other European states who feared a domino effect. There was a parallel wave of unrest, not directly related to the events in Greece, throughout Europe – the only reason this was not reported more widely was because of the media fixation on the world financial crisis.

    “TAM…I do have a more nuanced view on this event and it doesn’t hurt to have less people pontificating from their moral high horses.”

    Priceless. You don’t see the contradiction between your absolute statement of having a more nuanced view than others and your assertion that others are merely “pontificating from their moral high horses”?

  86. kui Says:

    Jed.

    You are correct. One of the contributor of this book is the author of “China Can Say No.” I do not think Chinese are traped in the “victim complex”. If that was the case then China would be able to learn so much from the west and Chinese would not welcome anything that is foreign with open arms. To me, Chinese are deciding what to learn from the west. Reflecting on the interactions with the west in the last one or two hundred years is an important part of the learning process. obviously some people do not like this kind of reflection.

  87. kui Says:

    An egg was thrown against a rock. Egg is killed by the rock. The rock looks really dirty. The world media and people from all over the world come to condemn the rock. The one who threw the egg walks away with what exactly he wanted. 以卵击石 is a very efficient tactic that had been used in the past many times to make the enemy look dirty, and will be used in the future to achieve many political goals. Who cares how the egg feels? Just cry for the egg( crocodile tears should be ok because the egg was not very smart in the first place) and condemn the rock. Mission accomplished.

  88. barny chan Says:

    Kui, thanks for #87. It’s bleak, ugly and unfair, but at least it’s a straightforward and explicable position.

    What a desperately sad and depressing place this forum is. I really hope that westerners with no experience of China understand that Fool’s Mountain reflects only one strand of Chinese thought.

  89. kui Says:

    barny.

    It was bleak, ugly and unfair. It had happened so many times and will happen many times on world political stage because the moral stand and motive of the one (usually dressed up in democracy) who throws egg has never been examed or challenged.

  90. barny chan Says:

    kui

    Just to be clear, this is the sentence that is bleak, ugly and unfair: “The one who threw the egg walks away with what exactly he wanted”. That’s a very big accusation.

  91. kui Says:

    barny.

    That is from me.

  92. Raj Says:

    barny, don’t waste your time with it. We know what the agenda of these people are. If you honestly don’t thing you can add anything here don’t give ammunition to those who will use it against the rest of us.

  93. pug_ster Says:

    I think what Kui explained in 86 is that there is still an quasi cold war between the West and China. The battle is not with missiles pointing to each other, but with the hearts and minds of those who are afflicted to it. Politicans in the UK say that they have the moral authority over China because of issues like corruption and human rights. Yet the UK Speaker resigns over corruption scandal. If any Chinese official was involved with something with that magnitude, he/she will be thrown in jail, assets seized, and have a death sentence waiting for him/her. In the UK, after the scandal went, no actions are taken to those corrupt officals, basically got a slap on the wrist. UK should look to themselves of how they treat minorities and especially muslims. After the London bombings, the UK was so blood thirsty to look for people who are responsible that they found a couple of innocent people and branded them guilty. That’s what’s so disgusting with the UK and they should look at themselves as a model of ‘moral authority’ before imposing their ideas onto others. This is the kind of thing what what many Chinese would think when they hear another lecture from Western countries of how to run their country. It is not that Chinese doesn’t care about killing of their own citizens, it is just that it is none of Western countries business’ to tell the Chinese of how they should think or feel of how their citizens getting killed.

  94. Shane9219 Says:

    “It is not that Chinese doesn’t care about killing of their own citizens, it is just that it is none of Western countries business’ to tell the Chinese of how they should think or feel of how their citizens getting killed.”

    Very well said. It is one thing to note events inside China, it is another to use them as a pretext to stretch and encourage dis-unity inside China. Many western intellects and politicians have no interest whatsoever in a stable and unified China.

    The 6-4 event of 1989 was one big ugly one. It was a shame to both sides of the event participants It left a scar in Chinese psyche. All Chinese know it.

    China still faces major security threats of modern times from both outside and inside (the relation with Taiwan, the Tibet issue, Ulger separatist movement and several others), as well as daunting and unfinished tasks on reform and development. Any internal instability will prevent China from resolving those issue properly. So China as a whole can not be distracted by one bad event that occurred in 20 years ago.

    Chinese are good at long views. When looking at 150 years of social turmoil, foreign invasions and civil wars in China’s modern history, the 6-4 event is just a small ripple.

  95. Raj Says:

    pug_ster, you are talking a load of rubbish out of complete ignorance. The Speaker of the House of Commons resigned because he was regarded with contempt by too many MPs – because he didn’t help reform the system in the last few years, because he verbally attacked a MP for criticising his actions, because he was a convenient scapegoat and because he had generally lost credibility. He didn’t resign because he had committed a serious criminal act.

    In China they would have been thrown in jail? That’s a laugh! Chinese officials do a lot more than pad their expenses claims and get away with it. I talked to a Chinese friend about it, and he laughed it off because he said it’s small-fry compared to what happens in China and the rest of the region. It doesn’t make it right, but no one is saying the CCP is bad because of expenses claims.

    As for the London bombings, which people are you referring to? A lot of people have been charged over terrorism – some convicted and others released. What are you trying to imply, that because people were charged and then released or found not guilty that British people cannot complain about human rights abuses? If someone can be charged and yet found not guilty in an open court system then that’s a good thing. It may lead to questions about how the Police conduct their interviews, but the point is that innocent people aren’t being sent down for lengthy prison terms because of something they didn’t do.

    We treat Muslims a lot better than China treats Tibetans or Uighars. They have the same rights as other British citizens do. They can complain about the UK government openly, unlike Chinese minorities.

  96. pug_ster Says:

    @Raj,

    I see in the UK, these crooked politicans spends millions of pounds taxpayers money is not a criminal offense. Instead, he just quit over his own conscience. That’s laughable. The last time when I heard of a scandal involving Chinese politicans is when some politicans went on a business trip on taxpayers expense and they resigned and one or two of them got charged. In UK, it is commonplace and it is not even considered a crime. Do you have any proof that any Chinese offical who padded their expenses and got away with it?

    Uk treats muslims well? That’s a laugh. Apparently, there’s alot of muslim terrorists who won’t agree that UK treats muslims well.

  97. Shane9219 Says:

    @Raj

    “We (UK/GB) treat Muslims a lot better than China treats Tibetans or Uighars.”

    Such statement is just laughable for anyone who knew a bit about world history.

    Do you really know how Tibetan or Uighar ethnicities had been treated in China, despite some of them advocate their separatist aspiration? Let me give you two concrete examples.

    1) During Mao’s era, China used its very limited foreign currency reserve to import grains from India to feed population in Tibet and Xinjiang, while most of Han population endured a wide-spread famine.

    2) While one-child policy is strictly enforced upon Han population, all ethnic minority families can have more than one child.

    Are those human rights you would like to talk about?

    Please learn a little bit about what colonist UK people did in the Middle East, Africa and the rest world.

  98. Raj Says:

    I see in the UK, these crooked politicans spends millions of pounds taxpayers money is not a criminal offense.

    Yes, once again you put words in my mouth because you cannot answer my points. I said that the speaker did not resign because he had committed serious criminal acts. I passed no comment on the MPs.

    Instead, he just quit over his own conscience.

    No, he quit because he was losing the confident of the House of Commons and didn’t want to be forcibly removed.

    The last time when I heard of a scandal involving Chinese politicans is when some politicans went on a business trip on taxpayers expense and they resigned and one or two of them got charged.

    You mean Shao Liyong, the guy who resigned and then got a good job in another city?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/8051488.stm

    According to the article it’s not the first time it’s happened either.

    In UK, it is commonplace and it is not even considered a crime.

    What is commonplace? The use of expenses by MPs is commonplace because they’re expenses. It’s well known that rather than raise the basic salary of MPs, which would have been unpopular, the expenses were increased in previous years to make up for it. But, hey, at least we have the chance to decide whether we agree that they were acting fairly or not in the election next year. In China there is no such right.

    Uk treats muslims well? That’s a laugh. Apparently, there’s alot of muslim terrorists who won’t agree that UK treats muslims well.

    Muslim terrorists are hardly the best people to ask, are they? You should ask British Muslims organisations about how we treat our own citizens!

  99. Shane9219 Says:

    @Raj

    I don’t get now that you are being so defensive. Corrupted politicians and officials will also do what they know the best.

    Proper official supervision and transparency are things that are being working on inside China. Maybe you are interested in the following article on Chinese officials’ accountability regulation.

    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2009-05/22/content_11421043.htm

    While I guess you must be proud of centuries of democratic governing in UK/GB

  100. Raj Says:

    Shane

    Just to be clear, I don’t defend the actions of the number of MPs who were exposed to have abused the rules. Even if they stayed within the formal regulations they should not have made claims as they did. They should have made a case for increasing their salaries if they felt that what they could claim for was not sufficient. However, the pay and expenses system will be easily fixed I think. Some people have even said something good might come of it (even if it would have been better if no one had abused their expenses claims) as so many old MPs are feeling the pressure to stand down – they can be replaced by younger people more eager to do good.

    I know that the CCP is concerned about corruption. But the question is whether it can really address the root causes without political reform. If politicians are not directly accountable to the public they can avoid restribution more easily than their democratically elected counterparts. Our next Prime Minister (as he almost surely will be), David Cameron, had to fire a top aide because of his expenses claims. Now to be fair do you think that would have happened in China to someone close to Hu Jintao or Wen Jiabao? More likely that the newspapers would never have been able to publish the stories in the first place. I think you may agree with me that when the former Mayor of Shanghai lost his job, it wasn’t just that he had done wrong – it was that he was connected to the wrong branch of the CCP. Had he been friends with the ruling cliche they might have saved him one way or another.

    I am proud of many things about the UK, but it tends to have more to do with rule of law and civil rights that British citizens have enjoyed. You know that we haven’t had full democracy for a century yet. I say this because women couldn’t vote in national elections until 1918. They didn’t have the same voting rights (in regards to the age they could vote at) as men until 1928.

    Of course it’s great that we’ve had a Parliament since the 13th century. I think it’s a strong institution that will last until we have a world government.

  101. Raj Says:

    By the way, I think what you mean is that corrupt politicians and officials will do what’s best for them. They may also make decisions that benefit the public, but if they want to have the respect of the public and to be trusted they need to not abuse their position. Expenses claims is small-fry in terms of what politicians can do. They may offer contracts to companies not because they’re the best but because they can profit from it. With public money and services that’s very bad, I’m sure you’ll agree.

  102. S.K. Cheung Says:

    “It is not that Chinese doesn’t care about killing of their own citizens, it is just that it is none of Western countries business’ to tell the Chinese of how they should think or feel of how their citizens getting killed.” – gimme a break. I think most people are still at the point of wanting the CCP to allow open discussion and to not sweep things under the rug with their “official interpretation”. I think it’d be a good start if the CCP allowed PRC citizens access to the information, and allowed them to create thoughts and feelings about the events for themselves. I’d say the CCP is still a long ways from such a starting point.

    “Many western intellects and politicians have no interest whatsoever in a stable and unified China.” – omg, here we go again. Maybe someday, China will progress to the point that her people don’t have to constantly reach for the victim card. That should definitely be on China’s to-do list.

    “Chinese are good at long views. When looking at 150 years of social turmoil, foreign invasions and civil wars in China’s modern history, the 6-4 event is just a small ripple.” – let’s not quibble about whether it was a ripple, a tsunami, or just a tweener 6 foot swell. You say to-may-to, I say to-mah-to. But whatever the size of disturbance in nautical terms, it was certainly the most recent one. So if one is to fixate on history, seems to me you shouldn’t just be reaching back into the relatively ancient past, and dismiss the relatively recent one.

    “there’s alot of muslim terrorists who won’t agree that UK treats muslims well.” – are you kidding me? So now “terrorists” form the metric for how well minorities are being treated? So then the fact that some Tibetans rioted last year should prove that all Tibetans are systematically mistreated by China? That would be a bolder acknowledgment than most would concede. Or is it perhaps that Muslim fundamentalists don’t approve of “western” culture and civilization, and choose to try to attack the bastions thereof? I think it’s the latter.

  103. shane9219 Says:

    @S.K.C.

    It is really clear now that the only thing you learned when you grew up is graffiti

  104. S.K. Cheung Says:

    I also learned how to poke fun at people like you. Quite an enjoyable pastime, really. BTW, based on what you’ve written lately, I do have to credit you for a good sense of humour, though I’m not sure it’s entirely intentional humour. But hey, a good laugh is a good laugh, eh?

  105. pug_ster Says:

    @SKC

    “It is not that Chinese doesn’t care about killing of their own citizens, it is just that it is none of Western countries business’ to tell the Chinese of how they should think or feel of how their citizens getting killed.” – gimme a break. I think most people are still at the point of wanting the CCP to allow open discussion and to not sweep things under the rug with their “official interpretation”. I think it’d be a good start if the CCP allowed PRC citizens access to the information, and allowed them to create thoughts and feelings about the events for themselves. I’d say the CCP is still a long ways from such a starting point.

    Maybe you think they want an open discussion, but most people probably don’t care because they are busy ‘making money.’ If somehow the CCP fails the chinese people then maybe they have something to gripe about. If they truly care about it maybe they would protest in the streets about it.

    “Many western intellects and politicians have no interest whatsoever in a stable and unified China.” – omg, here we go again. Maybe someday, China will progress to the point that her people don’t have to constantly reach for the victim card. That should definitely be on China’s to-do list.

    Then maybe that’s why NED funded organizations to pro democracy groups in China and VOA so that tell China why democracy sucks. Gimme a break.

    “Chinese are good at long views. When looking at 150 years of social turmoil, foreign invasions and civil wars in China’s modern history, the 6-4 event is just a small ripple.” – let’s not quibble about whether it was a ripple, a tsunami, or just a tweener 6 foot swell. You say to-may-to, I say to-mah-to. But whatever the size of disturbance in nautical terms, it was certainly the most recent one. So if one is to fixate on history, seems to me you shouldn’t just be reaching back into the relatively ancient past, and dismiss the relatively recent one.

    In other words, you lack any perspective of how other Chinese thinks about Chinese history.

    “there’s alot of muslim terrorists who won’t agree that UK treats muslims well.” – are you kidding me? So now “terrorists” form the metric for how well minorities are being treated? So then the fact that some Tibetans rioted last year should prove that all Tibetans are systematically mistreated by China? That would be a bolder acknowledgment than most would concede. Or is it perhaps that Muslim fundamentalists don’t approve of “western” culture and civilization, and choose to try to attack the bastions thereof? I think it’s the latter.

    Tibetan’s self victimization comes to mind.

  106. S.K. Cheung Says:

    “Maybe you think they want an open discussion, but most people probably don’t care because they are busy ‘making money’.” – maybe your guess is right; or maybe mine. For fear of sounding like a broken record, I can think of one way to find out, and not leave it to speculation. Can you guess what I’m thinking?

    “If they truly care about it maybe they would protest in the streets about it.” – c’mon. THis is CHina and 6/4 we’re talking about. Of course I’m guessing, but mine would be that such a protest would not be nearly as well tolerated by the authorities as some of the other ones they’ve started to allow.

    “Then maybe that’s why NED funded organizations to pro democracy groups in China and VOA so that tell China why democracy sucks.” – huh? I have no idea what you’re trying to say, but i don’t think democracy (with CHinese characteristics of course) and a “stable and unified China” are mutually exclusive things.

    “In other words, you lack any perspective of how other Chinese thinks about Chinese history.” – that’s probably true. Maybe at some point down the road, Chinese will see fit to undergo a sea-change (just to keep up the ripple analogy and all) in how they view their history, and lose them victim shackles.

    “Tibetan’s self victimization comes to mind.” – again, huh? How is that a response to the stuff you quoted? No matter. Coming from you, I shouldn’t be surprised that you think that Tibetan grievances are the Tibetans’ fault. As the saying goes, from a Tibetan perspective, who needs enemies when they have (Chinese) friends/brothers like you.

  107. JXie Says:

    @Raj #95

    We treat Muslims a lot better than China treats Tibetans or Uighars. They have the same rights as other British citizens do. They can complain about the UK government openly, unlike Chinese minorities.

    There are about 2.4 million Muslims in the UK out of the total 61 million population. From what I can gather, currently there are 4 MPs of Islamic faith or from families of Islamic faith, out of the total 646 MPs in the House of Commons. Muslims in the UK politics are underrespresented by about 635%. There are 5.4 million Tibetans in China out of the total population of 1.3 billion. There are 26 Tibetans in the National People’s Congress out of the total 2987. Tibetans in the Chinese politics are overrepresented by about 210%. The difference between Muslims the UK and Tibetans in China? In China, you are about 1338% politically more represented.

    As to “Uighars” [sic], I will let the others to compute.

    My friend, think independently.

  108. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To JXie:
    that’s an interesting perspective. But to be fair, I think Raj was referring to how Muslims are treated, not their prevalence as MP’s. Fair representation might be a component of fair treatment, I suppose. But then you’d have to factor in how many Muslims were running for seats. I mean, if there were only 4 running, then what can the Brits do? As an aside, having visible minorities in government is important. Even more important, though, is having visible minorities adequately engaged in the political process that they run for office to begin with. Can’t speak for Britain, but it remains an issue in Canada.

    It would also be important to note that Muslim MP’s in the British parliament represent all Britons in their ridings, not just those of Islamic faith. And non-Muslim MP’s are similarly duty-bound to represent Muslims in their ridings as much as non-Muslims. So to really make the point you’re trying to make, you need data to say that Muslim interests are under-represented, by Muslim and non-Muslim MP’s alike. The numbers you quote certainly don’t meet that bar.

    Not gonna tell you to think independently; but you may have to reconsider the point you’re trying to make…cuz so far, you haven’t made it.

  109. JXie Says:

    SKC, first if you think I haven’t made the point (Tibetans are politically far better represented), then you like replying far more than reading others.

    As to the point if Muslims are treated better in the UK, than Tibetans in China. How exactly can you measure that and state that with any sort of conviction? I am ALL ears. At least I gave a way — political representation. Is it perfect? Far from it. If this statement is only measured by Raj’s world, or your world, or my world — what we each individually read, see & then understand, or more precisely what we choose to read, see & then understand, then why even bother to debate?

  110. S.K. Cheung Says:

    My mistake, didn’t realize this (Tibetans are politically far better represented) was your point. Alas, you still haven’t made it. The point you have made is that there is a higher ratio of Tibetans in government in China than there are Muslims in government in the UK. Representation, on the other hand, not so much. How did those Tibetans end up in the National Congress? Unless they were selected by their Tibetan brethren, they aren’t representing anybody (except, I guess, those whose largesse allowed them to enter said Congress.)

    “As to the point if Muslims are treated better in the UK, than Tibetans in China. How exactly can you measure that and state that with any sort of conviction?” – well, let’s just say that just about anything discussed on this blog is hard to measure, so yes, it’s often a matter of opinion. What Raj did say was that Muslims in the UK “have the same rights as other British citizens do. They can complain about the UK government openly, unlike Chinese minorities.” Is that “better treatment”? To each his own, I suppose.

    Rather than the compare/contrast, in my world, having representative government for Tibetans would be better than not. As to whether that constitutes “better treatment”, it’d be best to ask a Tibetan (or a bunch of them).

  111. JXie Says:

    In my idealistic world, nations’ borders need to be torn down, and people should be allowed to move to any places they choose. Only 33 million live in a vast nation with the second largest land mass in the world, while people in the other part of the world live in often very crammed and inhospitable places, is extremely amoral. To me, maintaining such amoral system, is far more deleterious to humanity than not having “representative government” — whatever it means.

  112. S.K. Cheung Says:

    I’ll assume from #111 (which comes basically from somewhere in left field) that you now realize you haven’t made your point that you thought you had from #107 and #109. No worries. Better luck next time.

    You know, if you want to come to Canada, you should come on over. As the Americans like to tell us, we seem to have lax immigration policies, so you’d probably qualify no problem. I agree, the nation construct does seem to cause more problems than it solves. Funny, though, how people object to my idealism. Maybe it’s more palatable coming from the other side. But you know, just like your point that China wants to keep Tibet because it is in her interest to do so, so too that Canada’s interest is to not allow an excessive drain on her resources. Since the nation-state is reality, guess we’ll have to go with it.

    ““representative government” — whatever it means.” – well, if you say this, then clearly this (Tibetans are politically far better represented) doesn’t make sense either, since you apparently don’t know what representation means.

  113. JXie Says:

    SKC, I made my point, as clearly as I could — Tibetans in China politically are far more represented than Muslim in the UK. And I do understand you are trying to dispute the representation part. Thought about mentioning that in fact they were elected through ballot box, which apparently you don’t even know, which brings up a point — do you realize how little you know China at all? But to save your time and mine, the election isn’t rigged per se, but it’s hardly as hotly contested as you would expect in the UK. Let me put to you this way, you can always find faults in the Chinese system that any supposed advantages to the minorities can be negated, in the good old Internet debating fashion.

    Oh, I can easily make a point that minorities in China actually are treated BETTER than the majority (Han). But why bother? I don’t need luck, I just need better selection in choosing whom I debate with more carefully — the remaining hours of my life are limited.

    That wasn’t from the left field, my friend. If you want to be a part of the problem, you must be willing to be a part of the solution. If you care so much about some Tibetans’ well being, which is fine and dandy, you ought to realize that you may deny the well being of some Han/Hui Chinese from adjacent provinces. It’s all about the competition of self-interests.

    As to become a Canadian myself? Tax is WAY too high for my liking. Plus I am a warm climate kind of guy. If I have to choose a nation to be my home after I decide to call it quit, Brazil, baby. There are beaches, samba, very small bikinis that you probably can’t find in Canada, caipirinhas, but no golf, so I still need to travel around…

    BTW, how about my man Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida, huh?

  114. S.K. Cheung Says:

    “Thought about mentioning that in fact they were elected through ballot box, which apparently you don’t even know,” – the issue with representation isn’t “how” someone is elected (through a ballot box, as you say). The issue is “who” gets to make such a selection. Now, if those Tibetans in the Congress are elected by Tibetans at large (ie. democratically), then I stand corrected, am in awe that such a system is in fact practiced in China today, and hope that it will soon see the light of day in the rest of China. However, if those Tibetans in the Congress are “elected” by Party members, out of a list of “candidates” pre-ordained by the Party, then it is you who is wasting my time. If it’s the latter, that’s hardly just nit-picking for faults in the Chinese system, as you say.

    “If you care so much about some Tibetans’ well being, …you ought to realize that you may deny the well being of some Han/Hui Chinese from adjacent provinces.” – what potential self-interest of Han Chinese MIGHT be denied? Are we talking something tangible, like economy, food supply, water supply; or are we talking something a lot more nebulous, like the lust for territorial integrity?

    Yes, Brazil is much warmer than Canada. But there’s not much snowboarding or hockey there. Since those are my sports, I think I’ll stay put.

  115. Wahaha Says:

    Barny Chan,

    Reread your question :

    “can you think of a comparable western government response to internal protest in recent history?”

    You wouldnt have asked question if you had thought Western govenrment wouldve done the same, right ?

    so let me straight fact for you :

    the May 1968 incident in France proved that they wouldve done the same if students had kept protesting, your mentioning of 1961 was ridiculous and stupid, as it further confirmed what they wouldve done.

    What is so hard to understand, huh ?

  116. Wahaha Says:

    SKC,

    Maybe you have heard that there have been lot of swine flu incidents in New York, and health department had tried very hard to keep the facts from new york people,

    I like to hear your opinion on that : what is the difference between what NY health department is doing and what Chinese govenment did during SAS crisis ?

  117. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Wahaha:
    actually, hadn’t heard much in the way of specifics about the NYC outbreaks, other than the fact that several schools were closed at some point. How exactly is their health department hiding information from New Yorkers? You seem to know about it.

    “I like to hear your opinion on that” – I’ll try to find out more. Or maybe you can fill me in on what they did or didn’t do. But off hand, I would say one difference would be the scale of China’s cover-up and NYC’s alleged cover-up. We’re talking one city (albeit a big and populous one) vs a country (certainly big and populous). The principle is the same, but the consequences could be different by orders of magnitude.

  118. Raj Says:

    JXie (107)

    There are about 2.4 million Muslims in the UK out of the total 61 million population. From what I can gather, currently there are 4 MPs of Islamic faith or from families of Islamic faith, out of the total 646 MPs in the House of Commons. Muslims in the UK politics are underrespresented by about 635%. There are 5.4 million Tibetans in China out of the total population of 1.3 billion. There are 26 Tibetans in the National People’s Congress out of the total 2987. Tibetans in the Chinese politics are overrepresented by about 210%. The difference between Muslims the UK and Tibetans in China? In China, you are about 1338% politically more represented.

    So rights in China depend on how many deputies of whatever group are appointed to the National People’s Congress? Then it would seem that in China women are treated rather poorly, as they are under-represented.

    http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/90001/90776/90882/6608412.html

    Female deputies comprised 21.33 percent of the National People’s Congress (NPC)

    Of course the National People’s Congress is mostly a rubber-stamping body. It only meets for a few weeks a year. It is a nice propaganda show for the TV, but there’s no real exercise of power there. So, really, I think that who gets sent there is an irrelevance towards people’s rights.

    On the other hand, Parliament is a real, working political organisation so members have to be elected properly, not appointed to fulfill demographic criteria. Muslims are not just free to stand but allowed to decide how they stand and vote. They don’t have to trot out in front out the cameras to support the government whether they want to or not, unlike Tibetan politicians for the Chinese government.

    (113)

    I made my point, as clearly as I could — Tibetans in China politically are far more represented than Muslim in the UK.

    In that case, I take it there will be Tibetans at the top level in Chinese government – i.e. where it really matters. Which of the Politburo’s members are Tibetan?

    Currently I don’t believe that the Cabinet has a Muslim member, though we have had a Muslim minister. The Shadow Cabinet (opposition) has a Muslim member, so by summer of next year we can currently expect to have a Muslim Cabinet member too.

  119. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Raj:
    that’s a good point. I was so caught up with pointing out that Tibetans appointed to the Congress aren’t representing anybody, that I neglected that even truly and freely elected members of a window-dressing type body would not be providing any real or meaningful representation.

    I’m still not sure that better representation equals better treatment. But I’m fairly certain that no representation doesn’t.

  120. Charles Liu Says:

    SKC @ 119 “window dressing type body”

    I believe you’ve been schooled on this already – the NPC is indirectly elected by district PC that are openly nominated and directly elected, including autonomous regions:

    http://zhidao.baidu.com/question/24688763.html

  121. Wahaha Says:

    On the other hand, Parliament is a real, working political organisation so members have to be elected properly, not appointed to fulfill demographic criteria.

    BS,

    How much percent of british people supported using hundreds of billions of pounds to save to those banks ?

    How quickly was the bill passed by those “elected by people, work for people” ?

    SKC,

    That is your intelligence, huh ? though I dont agree with you, I still thought you are one of those people worth arguing with, and you called that a good point ?

  122. Charles Liu Says:

    No, that’s not rubber stamp. Wahaha haven’t you figure the MO with these PKD type and their constant demonization of China?

    When we do it it’s called “bipartisan”, “cooperation”. Only when the Chinese do it would it be rubber stamp. Never the fact the NPC has changed since its establishment.

  123. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Charles:
    “I believe you’ve been schooled on this already – the NPC is indirectly elected by district PC that are openly nominated and directly elected, including autonomous regions” – yes, you’ve mentioned it before, and it was as useful then as it is now, which is to say not very. Seriously, wake me up when this national Congress can actually pass legislation independently of the Politburo; better yet, wake me up when someone like John Q can have input on who replaces Hu Jintao. Otherwise, the time would be better spent sleeping.

    To Wahaha:
    first, Raj’s point was a good one. Second, the entirety of his #118 makes no mention of anything you alluded to in #121. So it seems bordering on retarded to criticize him for something he didn’t say, and of me for supporting something which he didn’t say. And third, as we’ve discussed ad nauseum in the past, our (and their) democracy isn’t a vote on every single issue. It’s electing representatives who will then make those decisions on our behalf.
    “How much percent of british people supported using hundreds of billions of pounds to save to those banks ?” – I don’t know; do you? But if the British people didn’t approve of what their elected representatives did, they can make their feelings known the next time they go to the ballot box.
    You may agree with bailouts, or not. People can certainly be faulted for allowing the fiasco to develop. But before unilaterally dumping on bailouts, there needs to be some reckoning of the consequences of not doing the bailout. If the bailout is the lesser of two evils, then I’m all for it.

    To Charles:
    “demonization of China?” – y’know, for a non-PRC citizen, you’ve sure got this victim card business down to a T. Who’s demonizing China? Complaints about the failings of her political system are an act of demonization? Gosh you’ve got the flare for hyperbole.
    “Only when the Chinese do it would it be rubber stamp.” – seriously, dude, have you not been paying attention. It’s not rubber stamp just because it involves CHinese people; it’s rubber stamping because the Congress will always toe the party line (not the least of which is because there’s only one party).

  124. Charles Liu Says:

    SKC @ 123 “will always toe the party line”

    I only need ONE example to prove your “always” wrong – here are four:

    1) 1993, the NPC refused to consider constitutional amendments proposed by the Chinese Communist Party

    2) 1994, the Eighth National People’s Congress Standing Committee included “Income and Property Law” in the official legislative plan, but was not able to bring it to a vote due to opposition.

    3) this year 192 abstain, 519 vote against the high court on corruption:

    http://opinion.hexun.com/2009-05-14/117681375.html
    http://rmfz.newssc.org/system/2009/05/06/011877119.shtml

    4) 2009 food safty bill recently passed committee with 3 oppose, 4 abstain:

    http://www.tech-food.com/news/2009-5-27/n0263173.htm

    There are more, just Baidu keywords “全国人大 反对票”

    Not demonizing China? I, someone who has no fight in this, decided to speak up precisely because of all you haters and your obvious agenda.

  125. huaren Says:

    Folks,

    Back to kui’s article. I am curious what your thoughts are on how to set the Western media straight on their malicious reporting of the 6.4 event. To me, what they literally have done is to create further misunderstanding between Chinese and Westerners. In the grand scheme of things, that’s kinda criminal.

    Instead of wasting time with the buffoons hell bent on their crusade against the Chinese government – I say let’s focus our energy on how to make those type of media nuttiness less likely or less egregious.

    Any thoughts?

  126. huaren Says:

    @Charles,

    “Not demonizing China? I, someone who has no fight in this, decided to speak up precisely because of all you haters and your obvious agenda.”

    Yup, and I am another one. Kind of interesting too . . . I had lunch with a friend just the other day – we don’t really talk about China much. Once we got started, it literally took us less than 2 minutes – we essentially were saying to each other – “wow, these scums hiding behind ‘democracy’ or ‘human rights’ cloak!” LOL. If I see one such in real life, I think I might just spit in his face.

  127. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Charles,
    ah yes, my mistake, should avoid words like “always”. Should’ve said “almost always”, and we’d basically be in agreement.

    1) so, in 1993, did those amendments pass anyway, even though the Congress refused to consider them (mighty ballsy display, I must say)
    2) in 1994, did this “income and property law” make it into law anyway, in some form, or perhaps renamed?

    3) “this year 192 abstain, 519 vote against ” – fantastic!!!!! But help me out here. That’s 711, out of 2987. Hmmm….so the vote still passed then, eh? Well, that’s easy then. OK guys, here’s the plan… so, on this vote, I’ll vote against it, but you 3 vote for it, and it’ll still pass. And then we’ll take turns after that voting against stuff…that way, we’ll look like we’re standing up to the Man, but everything he wants will still pass. But wait, maybe it’s better just to abstain…that way, we can still say we’re going against the Man, and not toeing the line all the time, without actually voting AGAINST the Man. Never anger the Man, never anger the MAN….

    4) 2009 food safty bill recently passed committee with 3 oppose, 4 abstain: I guess they learned their lesson from #3. 711 ballsy congress-people got reduced to 7 jiffy quick. Those 7 must’ve had stones the size of watermelons. Oh, and the bill passed anyway. Well, I guess you’re right, not everyone always toes the line; but enough do enough of the time to have the same net effect ALMOST always.

    Oh, and this request still stands: “Seriously, wake me up when this national Congress can actually pass legislation independently of the Politburo; better yet, wake me up when someone like John Q can have input on who replaces Hu Jintao. Otherwise, the time would be better spent sleeping.” Is this gonna take long, y’think?

  128. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Huaren:
    “I think I might just spit in his face.” – that sounds about right, as befitting a classy character of impeccable upbringing, such as you are.

  129. Ted Says:

    This was an interesting post, thanks Kui.

    You said: “Did we know that in a democracy a protest does not result in “everything we want”?”

    I thought this was an interesting comment. Would you say that you and some of your fellow students had the expectation that you would get everything you wanted going into the protest? That would be interesting to look at I think. What was the frame of reference most people had for a protest at the time? Perhaps that might shed some light on why things took the direction they did.

    I recently had a student say he took part in an anti-US “parade” in his college years (I could only guess it was related to either the embassy bombing or spy-plane incident). He was the second student I heard use the word parade instead of protest. Nobody in either class knew the word protest in English, is the Chinese word for parade more commonly used?

  130. Charles Liu Says:

    SKC @ 127, “did those amendments pass anyway”, “make it into law anyway”

    Why don’t you do some homework, instead of discuss dishonestly by switching these questons into some sort of support for your position? According to wikipedia, “refused to consider”, “did not vote” means to me they didn’t happen. If you have evidence to the contrary let’s see them.

    You are the one that said “always”, and I’ve delivered 4 examples and hundreds of votes against, showing there are in fact opposing views and disagreement in the NPC – I only neede ONE to prove your “always” to be wrong, as your now amended “almost always” demonstrates.

    And your incessant demonization of China, such as this, is again BS – you completely ignored their legislative practice for sponsors to withdraw or postpone bills if NPC does not give a near unanimous vote (the “高票/high count” face thing.)

    BTW, the NPC standing committee is a much smaller body, just like our own congressional committees, so you need to fix your math.

  131. huaren Says:

    @SKC, #128

    Okay, I guess you are the classy guy. You win on classy-ness.

    The last time I checked, historically, millions and millions of human beings perished under the hands of classy scums who want to “giveth salvation.”

  132. Raj Says:

    @SKC, #128

    Okay, I guess you are the classy guy. You win on classy-ness.

    The last time I checked, historically, millions and millions of human beings perished under the hands of classy scums who want to “giveth salvation.”

    huaren, do you actually think your behaviour is acceptable or are you deliberately trolling to try to drive SKC off the website?

    It’s people like you that give Chinese nationalists a bad reputation.

  133. huaren Says:

    @Raj, #132

    On any given day, you openly condemn millions and millions of Chinese numerous times on a whim without facts. Is that acceptable behaviour?

    Hey, if you label those who want to expose your duplicity and poke fun at your agenda “nationalists” – by all means.

    Btw, I am sure SKC wouldn’t be the last. I accept there are numerous crusaders out there.

    Hey, get used to it too – because 300+million Chinese people have come online. Wait until a bigger percentage of them get to hear your load of crap.

    kui’s account is an extremely good example . . . most of the ex-6.4 students are now disillusioned by the so called “human rights” activists.

  134. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Charles:
    ““did those amendments pass anyway”, “make it into law anyway”” – dude, you need to take a pill, and maybe chase it with a stiff drink. I was merely asking a question with point 1 and 2 (though I apologize for forgetting the “?” and the end of point 1, but I think a sentence starting with “did” pretty much indicates a question in most peoples’ books.

    “You are the one that said “always”” – like I said, my bad for using “always”; which is why I changed it to “almost always”, and if you want to drag out four million exception to “prove me wrong” on the amended point, be my guest. BTW, if there are 4 million exceptions where this Congress went against the Party, then I might begin to buy that they’re a little more than window dressing. So fly at’er, pal. When you’re done, you know where to find me. But I think you’d be better off picking curtain patterns instead.

    “so you need to fix your math.” – well, sort of. This (711 ballsy congress-people got reduced to 7 jiffy quick) is the statement that doesn’t apply, since the committee is a subset of the congress. But that’s not math. And the rest of point 4 is still good to go.

    So, BTW, as math goes, (“I’ve delivered 4 examples”) you actually only delivered 2, since I’ll stipulate that, in those two instances in the early 90′s, the Congress like totally stood up to the Man and made him say uncle. But points 3 and 4 don’t wash, since the stuff passed anyway. I mean, even for the CCP, “nearly” unanimous support for “almost” everything would be a little obtuse, no? (have I learned my lesson well with avoiding the absolutes?)

    I see that you didn’t have much to say about point 3. Interesting. Oh, and how is that request of mine going, anyhow? Making any headway?

  135. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Huaren:
    “You win on classy-ness.” – dude, compared to you, was there really much doubt?

    “I am sure SKC wouldn’t be the last” – and I’m not even going anywhere.

    To Raj:
    hey, no worries. Like I said to you, this constitutes the entertainment portion of why I’m here.

    “It’s people like you that give Chinese nationalists a bad reputation.” – I’d probably even lose the “nationalists” portion of that statement. And he’s approaching the point where even the “hua” portion is not an appropriate discriminator.

  136. Raj Says:

    Huaren

    On any given day, you openly condemn millions and millions of Chinese numerous times on a whim without facts.

    Really? I’d like to see some examples of where I criticise millions of Chinese people.

  137. huaren Says:

    @SKC

    LOL. Nothing more to say to you, yet, Dude!

    @Raj

    Go dig up examples yourself.
    1. Keyword search on CCP where you have commented.
    2. Look for vicious attack sentences.
    3. Count how many times each day.

    But buffoons do not understand what #2 is. So I am not sure if your number will be 0.

    4. Google “size of the chinese communist party” or something like that to get number of Chinese people you are offending each time.

  138. barny chan Says:

    Last week, Cheng Lingcao argued in The Guardian newspaper that “Western suspicion at Chinese patriotism should lessen through the inevitable increase in communication and dialogue”, and gave a link to Fool’s Mountain. After the recent behaviour of huaren, Wahaha and others he must be regretting his timing.

    What have westerners who followed his link learnt from this thread? That many young Chinese callously applaud the massacre of protesters in 89; that they believe that student leaders were evil people who actively wanted a massacre to occur (“The one who threw the egg walks away with what exactly he wanted”); that they believe that westerners who believe in democracy are “scums” and “buffoons”; that if they encounter these “scums” they’ll spit in their face. I could go on.

    What a triumph for dialogue and understanding. The reality is that the hardcore xenophobes here have no interest in dialogue. They just want to belligerently cheer on the worst excesses of the ruling regime and show their contempt both for internal dissidents and western democrats. If it wasn’t so pathetic it would be frightening.

    Thank you huaren and Wahaha for making my point about the ugliness of young Chinese nationalists far more eloquently than I could ever hope to do.

  139. opa Says:

    There are no facts, only interpretations

  140. pug_ster Says:

    @Barny Chan

    “That many young Chinese callously applaud the massacre of protesters in 89″

    Now show whom actually applauded otherwise you obviously don’t know what you are talking about.

  141. Brad Says:

    Thanks to Kui for sharing some first hand experience.

    I was among the millions demonstrated on 89 Tiananmen Square. I was studying at University of International Business and Economics at the time. For all the school mates in our university, none killed or hurt on 4-June.

    At that time I was young and naive. I went to Tiananmen Square on several occasions from May to June. I was so excited that it was the first time for my fellow country men to express openly that Communist Party was not all that “Great, honorable, and Correct”. I saw the corruption and injustice everywhere in the country and in the system. I truly feel the oppress ruling of the Communist party. People were poor. I admire the western rich and free life style.

    Students got support from all occupations. Truck drivers deliver full load of students from the school to the square for free. When we were sitting on the square, we also got free food and drinks donated from all kinds of organizations and businesses. I even had a first taste of those medical bottle waters with intravenous nutrition. I was surprised to realize how good the water tastes, just the right balance of sweet and saltiness.

    The students were very organized and peaceful. Students hold hands to form a security fence. I was very excited to get the chance to hold hands of my school girls. Talking about girls, one day, I even witnessed a student leader from the school fondling a female student’s breasts at the back of the bus seat on our way to the square. No class, no home work. Free food and drink. It was quite fun.

    Everynight, I lisened to the VOA. The signal was very bad because of Government radio interference. I hated that so much. But that does not discourage me nor my room mates. The only news about Tiannmen Square was coming from overseas, especially VOA and BBC.

    June-5th I heard the news. I did not go to the Square on June-4th. I and my classmates were so sad and in rage. It was a tragic historical event for the students, the army, and the whole country. It was a wake up call for everyone. Loosing hope in China, I started to plan for studying abroad after June-4th.

    Twenty years after June-4th, China has changed, the Communist Party has also changed for the good. I am so glad for China and Chinese people. June-4th obviously has served as a wake up call for the Chinese government in a good way.

    My view of the free world and the west democracy has changed totally after living in the west for so long. The democracy of the West is nothing but selfish BS. Here is my warning: the west never truly cared about the interest of Chinese people.

  142. Charles Liu Says:

    How dare you Brad, don’t you know these idealogues (Barny, Raj, SKC) indoctrinated by official western narrative, actually know about what happened to you, and China – better than you?

    8-)

  143. MutantJedi Says:

    Raj #50,
    Yes, actually, governments have shot people for breaking curfew.

    Speaking of sympathy… what about sympathy for the soldiers murdered by the mob? Since the soldiers were dispatched from Shijiazhuang, my newly adopted hometown, your callousness suddenly becomes a bit personal. hmm… note to self: self-righteous indignation is way too easy to attain.

    #55 your criteria for righteousness is brittle and self serving – condemn an action for the shedding of a drop of innocent blood. In a cocoon of idealism, such a world view might be comforting but the real world demands a broader view.

    barny chan #62,
    I must be missing a lot of cleverness as I’m not quite sure what your POV is. You called for Western examples then, when provided, you gleefully upstage the offering by provided a “better” one of your own. Then you plant your flag and claim victory. Odd.

    barny chan #90,
    Certainly there were a number of fingers on the egg, from young delusional leaders with martyrdom dancing in their heads to the Western media eating up their own narrative. The rock was coming. Martial law. Dead soldiers. Chaos. It was time to back down, before innocent lives were lost. But the students/workers didn’t. From your generous supply of Western precedent, nobody should have been surprised by the ultimate violent suppression. How it played out fitted perfectly to the Western media’s narrative.

    Do I applaud the actions of the government on 6.4? No. Nor do I applaud the actions of the students/workers. I understand the government’s action. Perhaps less lethal methods could have been used. But for the sake of stability, the government had to act. Inaction would have resulted in far far more bloodshed.

    As for the body count, the leadership of the protesters must catch some egg. They knew what was going to come. This is mostly where I part company with Raj, et al. He’s looking at condemning the government because some peaceful protesters (or non-protesters) got killed. There is an appearance that the protesters are teflon coated, no condemnation can stick to them, much less eggs.

  144. MutantJedi Says:

    Thanks Kui for your recollection.

    Your sampling of the student population in Tianjin does help with understanding what the death toll really was on 6.4. If it were in the high thousands, you would have likely found students missing. While not conclusive, it does lend support to a lower body count.

    On 6.4, I was 28 living in Edmonton Alberta. With my friends from Hong Kong, I was very interested in what was happening in China. My plan was to have been in China, not for the protests, but my life took a different turn. The events leading up to 6.4 were of great interest to us. July 1st, 1997 was less than a decade away. When we watched what was happening, we were watching for hints of what to expect after 1997, after Hong Kong returned to the PRC. The Western narrative of the events was comfortable.

    And then 6.4 came. Of course, you knew that something had to happen. But the shock was palpable. What would it mean for post-1997 Hong Kong?

    20 years later, I’m not comfortable at all with the Western narrative on 6.4. Not only were the students not champions of democracy as I understand it, I’m utterly unconvinced that democratic reforms, in a form commonly championed in the West, are timely then or now. I’m not even sure I would characterize the student leaders as champions.

    6.4, along with Tibet, Darfur, FLG, and the one child policy, are important in the West’s image of China. Boston Legal is one of my favorite TV shows because it is thoughtful about the issues it tackles. It has tackled many issues from capital punishment to abortion to education. Normally, Denny is a foil to Alan’s perspective on an issue. From time to time, China popped up but never long enough to get a good sense of which way the show’s wind was blowing. That is until the end. The last two shows dealt with China. 6.4, along with the other pillars of Western perception of China, was brought out fully wrapped in the usual mythology. The sinophobia of the main characters ran unchecked.

    China has, is, and will face many serious issues. Stuffing China into a Western shaped mould doesn’t help. When people can only see the rest of the world through lenses strongly polarized by their own bias, well… they won’t see nor understand much. That, of course, applies to both sides of the divide.

  145. Wahaha Says:

    “Thank you huaren and Wahaha for making my point about the ugliness of young Chinese nationalists far more eloquently than I could ever hope to do.”

    Hey, Barney,

    There was a rumor that Imelda Macus asked “why didnt they eat cake? ” when some Philiphine people were starving after a natual disaster.

    So since when you have a point ABOUT CHINA if you have absolutely no idea what 99% of chinese want ?

    If you are a westerner,(also to SKC), please take some times searching for some blogs by India people, see what they care most, OK ? especially their blogs about China vs India.

    If you are a chinese, you are one of those thousands, or 10 thousands, or 100 thousands chinese whom Westerners called dissidents, but remember, there are 1.3 billion chinese.

    Nationalism ? run out of words or what? what the heck does that have anything to do with 6/4 ?

    ________________________________________________________

    and do you know why West tried to sell their idealism to China ? Here is why :

    “…..

    If I read the temper of our people correctly, we now realize as we have never realized before our interdependence on each other; that we can not merely take but we must give as well; that if we are to go forward, we must move as a trained and loyal army willing to sacrifice for the good of a common discipline, because without such discipline no progress is made, no leadership becomes effective. We are, I know, ready and willing to submit our lives and property to such discipline, because it makes possible a leadership which aims at a larger good. This I propose to offer, pledging that the larger purposes will bind upon us all as a sacred obligation with a unity of duty hitherto evoked only in time of armed strife.

    With this pledge taken, I assume unhesitatingly the leadership of this great army of our people dedicated to a disciplined attack upon our common problems.

    ….”

    Franklin D. Roosevelt

  146. Wahaha Says:

    “Thank you huaren and Wahaha for making my point about the ugliness of young Chinese nationalists far more eloquently than I could ever hope to do.”

    Barney,

    My post didnt pop up ( I didnt use dirty words.), so I try again.

    You have no point ABOUT CHINA as you have no idea about what 99% of Chinese want. read the links in other thread, that may wake you up from western brain-washing machine.

    Now, you and others ” activitists ” on this board keep using the word “nationalism”. (Please elaborate what the heck “nationalism” has anything to do with 6/4.) a more approporiate description of current situation is widespread “westlism” among western people, cuz they dont want to share influence with others, they want to dominate the world completely. Obviously, the rise of China is challenging their power in the world, they dont like it.

    So please dont sound like ” You are allowed to burn my house but I m not allowed to light a cigarette.” OK ? that sounds really childish.

  147. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To huaren:
    so sorry to see you go the way of the dodo. Where else will I get my “laugh-of-the-day”? I suppose I’ll have to soldier on, one day at a time…

    To Barny:
    yep, you’ve pretty much summed it up.

    To Brad:
    I’m sorry you’ve come to feel that way, but I respect the journey you’ve taken, as well as your anecdotes.

    To MJ #144:
    well said, especially the last statement.

    To Charles:
    so, how’s my request coming along? Making any progress with that yet?

  148. barny chan Says:

    MutantJedi: “barny chan #62,
    I must be missing a lot of cleverness as I’m not quite sure what your POV is. You called for Western examples then, when provided, you gleefully upstage the offering by provided a “better” one of your own. Then you plant your flag and claim victory. Odd.”

    What you’re missing is that not everybody lives in a black and white/us versus them world. I’m not a patriot blindly cheering on the CCP’s authoritarianism, but I’m also not an apologist for western crimes against humanity. I raised the issue of the Paris massacre because, as I’ve already stated: “Not only was the brutality arguably as bad, but the subsequent denials and cover-up offer a direct parallel”.

    As for “cleverness”, everything’s relative and it’s easy to look pretty smart here.

  149. huaren Says:

    @Brad

    Thx for adding anoter piece to the over-all puzzle.

    @barny chan
    Don’t get bent out of shape when some people here defend China and how she governs herself. If you read our posts in the past, those sincerely care, have a sober understanding of issues China faces.

    @All,

    MutantJedi gave a good example about the TV show “Boston Legal” being sinophobic. For those of you in the USA, I highly recommend you head over to KQED and watch “Slanted Screens”.

    @SKC

    Ooops! You slipped on the word – “soldier” on? Haha, reminds me of Bush announcing his “crusade” when invading Iraq. :)

    LOL. I am glad you find our exchanges entertaining.

  150. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Huaren:
    dude, “soldier on” is a phrase; didn’t have to slip anything into it.

    “I am glad you find our exchanges entertaining.” – my amusement seems to be all you’re good for, I’m afraid.

  151. Nimrod Says:

    Will there be a Part 2? Before the 20th Anniversary, hopefully.

  152. Raj Says:

    MutantJedi (143)

    Raj #50,
    Yes, actually, governments have shot people for breaking curfew.

    I’m not sure I said that no government has shot people for breaking curfew in post # 50. I asked whether breaking curfew alone justified people being shot.

    Speaking of sympathy… what about sympathy for the soldiers murdered by the mob?

    Yes, I have sympathy for them as well. That’s another reason why the topic shouldn’t be swept under the carpet. All the deaths need to be openly discussed.

    Since the soldiers were dispatched from Shijiazhuang, my newly adopted hometown, your callousness suddenly becomes a bit personal. hmm… note to self: self-righteous indignation is way too easy to attain.

    Uhuh, let’s see I’ve been callous because….. I…… no I don’t get how I’ve been callous in suggesting that civilians being shot needs to be openly discussed and that they weren’t all evil rioteers.

    As for Shijiazhuang, I think the emotion you feel towards your newly adopted hometown has clouded your vision. According to Dr Jiang Yanyong, the troops that actually took part in the clearances were from Shandong province. The good doctor said these people had been isolated from the events in Beijing and didn’t know what was happening, so they just followed orders. Perhaps troops from Shijiazhuang were present at some point during the protests, but it may well been they had been withdrawn by 4th June.

    #55 your criteria for righteousness is brittle and self serving – condemn an action for the shedding of a drop of innocent blood. In a cocoon of idealism, such a world view might be comforting but the real world demands a broader view.

    Again, I don’t see the link between your comment and mine. I haven’t raised any criteria for “righteousness”. Of course innocent blood does get shed and sometimes its unavoidable. But it doesn’t make it right to the extent that the whole topic should be swept under the carpet so that the CCP leadership can avoid difficult questions being asked.

  153. JD Says:

    Who knows what happened, really? Who can tell truth from propaganda with no doubt? An open discussion of June 1989 and its ramifications is still in order. If the propaganda represents factual truths, then I find it hard to understand why this subject remains so largely taboo.

  154. brad Says:

    @JD

    “If the propaganda represents factual truths, then I find it hard to understand why this subject remains so largely taboo. ”

    ha, if you do not understand something, then, it must be other’s fault? Did you ever suspect, maybe it is you, your lack of knowledge of the other society, history, culture etc, is at fault?

    All you need to do is to learn and to investigate.

    Personally I don’t think 89 student movement is a taboo. In today’s china, people can discuss anything they want. Just maybe that an event 20 years ago is not that a hot topic to most Chinese, although it may still be hot and important topic to some westerners.

  155. JD Says:

    So Brad, let’s see an open discussion of Tiananmen in the Chinese domestic media and on the internet.

    Educate yourself, my young friend, as you’ve apparently shrouded yourself willfully in ignorance.

  156. JXie Says:

    Thought about writing a piece about the two images, one in 1989 and the other in 2009, but haven’t been kind of busy so I will just leave it as a comment.

    The image in 1989 was the Goddess of Democracy erected in the Tiananmen Square, which despite denied by its creators was apparently a knock-off of the Stature of Liberty. The idea that the “oppressed” Chinese want to be just like us, knocked-off and all, has kept the topic alive in the West at large. At the end of the day, it’s more about self-love, the love of one’s own image is being desired.

    The other image was the cover page of a recent issue of the Economist, which while exaggerated is probably more poignant today than that image of 1989. A large copy can be found here: http://blogs.channelnewsasia.com/yee-fong/files/2009/04/cover-page.jpg. The Stature of Liberty is holding up a sign “Please Give Generously”. Sometimes you wonder why the image of 1989 is being played up in your typical media outfits… maybe just maybe it makes people avoid facing the image of today.

  157. admin Says:

    JXie,

    According to Steve, the cover page of the Economist is a takeoff of a famous New Yorker magazine cover from 1976, which you can see here:
    http://strangemaps.wordpress.com/2007/02/07/72-the-world-as-seen-from-new-yorks-9th-avenue/

    There are some map links emailed in by a reader.

    How Taiwan Sees the World
    http://img.skitch.com/20080515-aapsadu37c5ycas396u4pukff.jpg

    How Chinese see Chinese in other parts of China
    http://www.xucx.com/blog/post/map.html

    How America sees the world
    http://thebizzare.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/05/american-world-800×560.jpg

    And more bizarre maps
    http://strangemaps.wordpress.com/?s=China

  158. admin Says:

    Raj #152

    According to what I learned, at least 3 different army units participated the final clearances in TAM, the 38th army , the 15th army, and a special task force from the 27th army (from Shijiazhuang). Most killings were done by the 38th army, whose commander initially refused to march into Beijing.

  159. Wahaha Says:

    So Brad, let’s see an open discussion of Tiananmen in the Chinese domestic media and on the internet.

    Educate yourself, my young friend, as you’ve apparently shrouded yourself willfully in ignorance.

    JD,

    Will you find me a poll that shows how western people think of rescue plans for those big banks ?

  160. Wahaha Says:

    JD,

    In China, CCP is the group that benefits most from the system; in democratic system, it is the riches that benefits most from the system.

    So I like to see the reports in democratic system that make riches uncomfortable, just like 6/4 would make CCP uncomfortable.

    http://www.struggle.ws/once/pd_chap8.html

    It could not be put more plainly. Parliamentary democracy is a good thing
    (in fact it is one of the best thing around) if you wish to preserves the
    current unequal order – as the rich do. It delivers the essential result
    every time we vote: the rich get richer and the poor get poorer

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article17453.htm

    Democracy is for the rich

    Or again, modern democracy may be regarded as a dishonest farce used to
    keep the masses from getting restless by providing the hope that things
    might get better when they have another election.

    Reforms are needed in the electoral process so that the power of big money
    is removed. Otherwise democracy can never be “of the people” i.e. poor or
    middle class people. It will always be class dominated. Democracy will be
    for the rich.

  161. MatthewTan Says:

    Jxie:
    “The other image was the cover page of a recent issue of the Economist, which while exaggerated is probably more poignant today than that image of 1989. A large copy can be found here: http://blogs.channelnewsasia.com/yee-fong/files/2009/04/cover-page.jpg. The Stature of Liberty is holding up a sign “Please Give Generously”. Sometimes you wonder why the image of 1989 is being played up in your typical media outfits… maybe just maybe it makes people avoid facing the image of today.”

    Pardon my low IQ. I don’t understand you and the image.

    “Please Give Generously” – give what? or is it trying to say “please buy US treasury”?

    “maybe just maybe it makes people avoid facing the image of today.” – you mean, “today” China is still “communist”, not “democratic”?

    I note that this is channelnewsasia. Are you a Singaporean? I am.

  162. raventhorn4000 Says:

    My parents’ sentiments summed up the “ordinary” Chinese mentality perfectly.

    When talking about the Cultural Revolution, my mother lamented on the foolishness of the Chinese youths in her generation, saying, “the young are fools, and that’s why they are cannon fodder for every political death match.”

    She prided herself on being unusually non-political. She stayed in school, when most of her friends were busy arguing about politics.

    “See”, she would say to me, “it all became nothing but a generation of wasted youth.”

    She would tell me in my youth, to “never get involved in politics.” She tells me to stay in school, learn “useful things”, like engineering or science. (which I followed to the letter.)

    *At the same time, she was ardently critical of all Government’s actions. Yet at the same time, she was good friends with many of her classmates, many of whom joined the CCP. (1 even became the Secretary General of the CCP for all of China for a time.)

    She was not anti-CCP, but simply an apathetic part time critic.

    You know the type, even in US or Canada, the type that never really understand the issues, votes only favorite candidates (who look like friends), but always complain about every government policy or scandal.

    My mother votes now in US, but I wouldn’t call her votes any more “intelligent”. She rarely researches political issues, and only vote for candidates who “look smart”.

    and yes, she complains about US politics as much as she did about Chinese politics back when she was lecturing me about the moral wrongs of all things “political” back in Shanghai.

    **
    Yes, my mother is right, the Young are fools, and cannon fodder for every political bloodbath.

    And if you give them “democracy”, they will just end up as old and apathetic, like my mother, WITHOUT the bloodbath.

    Somewhere in the middle, I survived my youthful tendencies, out of the bloodbath, and not apathetic. I do not attribute it to “democracy”, but to my mother’s apathy.

    *There is a saying, “only the poor child knows the value of a grain of rice.”

    It is not “democracy” that people crave, but simple good governance and orderly society. Even “democracy” is instituted for that ultimate goal.

    When one has seen enough of the bad governance around the world, one knows that there is no simple solution as “Democracy”.

    Those who believe in a simple solution, follow foolishly into revolutions and bloodbaths. And in the end, realizing that they have only wasted their lives for a solution that the future generation will tear down for convenience.

    I have no simple solutions, but I believe in the ability of the Chinese people to generate new talents in whatever system of the time.

    China has never been short of talented leaders in the past 5000 years. They in turn contributed to lessons for all Chinese.

  163. MatthewTan Says:

    Wahaha Says: “In China, CCP is the group that benefits most from the system”

    Not accurate. Only the elite and powerful CCP guys benefit most.

    “to preserves the current unequal order …every time we vote: the rich get richer and the poor get poorer”

    It seems to work this way for most countries.

    But it needs not be so. Under Thaksin, the rural folks of Thailand got a lot of handouts. Now the rich urbanites have been protesting. They want to make Thailand less democratic and more “royalist”. By the way, democracy has failed many times in Thailand.

    Also, in Malaysia, democracy seems to benefit the poor Malay majority to the disadvantage of richer Chinese, relatively. (Malaysia like Singapore is “highly controlled” democracy – not so “free”).

    “Democracy is for the rich ”
    Democracy is for rich nations only.

    “modern democracy… keep the masses from getting restless by providing the hope that things
    might get better when they have another election. ”

    Tell you some facts that are not often broadcast. Help to broadcast them.

    To keep the masses from getting restless, build big prisons, arrest people for petty offences, give them long prison terms.

    (President Obama is half-white half-black. He is truly exceptionally exceptional. Talk about treatment of minorities – except for some exceptionally exceptionals)

    • Bureau of Justice Statistics Criminal Offenders Statistics
    8 Aug 2007 … Based on current rates of first incarceration, an estimated 32% of black males will enter State or Federal prison during their lifetime
    http://www.ojp.gov/bjs/crimoff.htm

    http://edition.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/03/02/record.prison.population/
    Study: 7.3 million in U.S. prison system in ’07
    March 2, 2009

    The United States has 5 percent of the world’s population, but 25 percent of the world’s prison inmates, the center said.
    The numbers vary widely by race and gender.
    “Black adults are four times as likely as whites and nearly 2.5 times as likely as Hispanics to be under correctional control. One in 11 black adults — 9.2 percent — was under correctional supervision at year-end 2007,” the report said. “And although the number of female offenders continues to grow, men of all races are under correctional control at a rate five times that of women.”

  164. MatthewTan Says:

    Wahaha: I did not read the article just now. This is truely a good article, and worth quoting.

    “They are taught to equate elections with democracy, and democracy with elections. Yet, as we know, elections alone do not guarantee real democracy.”

    “Some would say that liberal democracy in the US (and some other countries as well) has become an integral part of the capitalist system and, therefore, is class-based and not fully or truly democratic or participatory. It is “bourgeois democracy” where only the most financially powerful people have their say.”

    Continue…

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article17453.htm

    Democracy is for the rich

    By Kevin Barr

    Hence, the concerns of the rich are strongly protected and the US has a bias against welfare for the poor and redistribution of wealth. Comparing the US and Europe they note:

    “Not only does government spending in the Europe favour the poor much more than in the United States, but government tax policy as well is much more distributive. Income tax rates are more progressive than in the United States.”

    Thus, according to Marx, parliamentary elections are an opportunity citizens of a country get every few years to decide who among the ruling classes will MISrepresent them in parliament.

    William Blum once of the US State Department in his book Rogue State (2000:170) notes that: “Americans are raised to fervently believe that no progress can be made in any society in the absence of elections. They are taught to equate elections with democracy, and democracy with elections.”

    Yet, as we know, elections alone do not guarantee real democracy.

    Or again, modern democracy may be regarded as a dishonest farce used to keep the masses from getting restless by providing the hope that things might get better when they have another election.

    Reforms are needed in the electoral process so that the power of big money is removed. Otherwise democracy can never be “of the people” i.e. poor or middle class people. It will always be class dominated. Democracy will be for the rich.

    In this connection ownership of the media by a few of the rich elite may lead to more specific distortion of the electoral process. The media are themselves a vital element of the electoral process. They can be used to protect the interests of their own class and suppress any criticism of the status quo.

  165. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To JXie:
    “Sometimes you wonder why the image of 1989 is being played up in your typical media outfits… maybe just maybe it makes people avoid facing the image of today.” – perhaps the US media and Canadian media cover very different things…in fact, I’m pretty sure they do. But I must say, from the stuff I’ve read, watched, and listened to in the last while, 6/4 has not even merited a blip on the radar. In fact, this weekend was the first reference I’d read leading up to the 20 anniversary (not here of course, but in Canadian media). But there’s been much hand-wringing about the economy, the looming deficit, economic fundamentals, the rising loonie, unemployment trends, GM restructuring etc. So i don’t think there’s any shortage of reality checks, nor excessive use of 6/4 as some sort of diversion.

    To R4000:
    nice post.

    To Wahaha:
    one aspect of the internet today is that one can probably find a “published” POV similar to one’s own, regardless of how outlandish or misguided that view might be. You’ve offered some nice examples. And they span nearly 20 years, no less. But they share one fatal flaw: they mistake association for causality. Yes, the social disparity between rich and poor has been increasing. Yes, the examples come from a democracy. Yes, the authors have established the association. But no where have they come close to establishing that “democracy” caused said disparity. You could just as easily have said that, during the years where this increasing disparity occurred, the sun rose from the east every morning, so therefore, the sun rising from the east has caused this disparity.

    It should also be noted that a similar disparity has occurred in the last 30 years in China, with the widening gulf between rich and poor. So, did the CCP cause that? That’s something I wouldn’t even say.

    In fact, if social and economic disparity is what you find distasteful, then communism in its purest form is what you truly want, where what’s mine is yours and what’s yours is mine. That’s not something the CCP provided even back in the day; and it’s certainly not what the CCP provides today. And it’s definitely not something that is up to “democracy” to solve.

  166. MatthewTan Says:

    raventhorn4000 Says:
    “China has never been short of talented leaders in the past 5000 years. ”

    There is something I don’t like when Chinese start to boast. Worse still when boasting is unwarranted. Actually China lacked talented leaders for too much of its history. Otherwise China will not have 150 years of humiliation. Why lack of talents? Because only sons of Emperors become emperors.

  167. MatthewTan Says:

    Molotov cocktails are ANTI-TANK weapons.

    I think many of you contributors have not grasped the seriousness and extent of protester violence.

    Troops moved in initially without arms. But they were driven away. Road blocks and barricades were set up to prevent troops from moving in again. The next time the troops moved in with their arms and army vehicles, including tanks. Tanks were necessary to overcome the barricades. Molotov cocktails were hurled at the troops and vehicles, including tanks.

    Troops moved in row by row, shoulder to shoulder. The protester and troop populations were very dense. Soldiers inside the tanks and civilians in trucks and buses had no escape route. They were trapped inside when fiery missiles or stray bullets landed on them When things started to burn, the smoke was enough to kill those who were trapped. When soldiers saw fiery missiles hurled at them, they had no choice but to shoot to protect themselves and to maintain order. The population was thick and dense. There was confusion and chaos. Fires would spread, and bullets flying. Soldiers could not see far because the sky was dark, and bullets were blind. This kind of condition was certain to lead to very high casualty rate – especially if the protesters fought back. And it was quite certain the protesters were there to fight. They came prepared with the necessary weapons, especially the deadly Molotov cocktails. In many of the Tiananmen videos, we see a lot of fire and burnt vehicles including tanks.

    For your information, Molotov Cocktails are ANTI-TANK weapons.
    http://www.winterwar.com/Weapons/FinAT/FINantitank2.htm#molotov
    Anti-tank weapons
    used by the Finns in the Winter War
    THE MOLOTOV COCKTAIL

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molotov_cocktail
    In the United States, Molotov cocktails are considered “destructive devices” and regulated by the ATF.
    (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and EXPLOSIVES )

    http://mlcastle.net/raisethefist/molotov.html
    (Different types of Molotov cocktails.)
    The most high explosive and lethal mixture is amonium-nitrate-based fertilizer mixed with gasoline.

  168. MatthewTan Says:

    S.K. Cheung Says:
    “6/4 has not even merited a blip on the radar”

    I am surprised. On the internet, it was everywhere for a few weeks. In Singapore, the Straits Times devoted many (six, I think) full pages to 6/4 itself, and a few more to Zhao Ziyang’s memoirs and his role in 6/4.

  169. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Matthew:
    not at all sure about the point of #167. It seems Molotov’s CAN be anti-tank weapons, especially the professionally manufactured ones, or the ones with the funky chemical additives. But the old-school kind with alcohol and a rag don’t seem much more than incendiary devices…hardly enough to stop tanks. So, what kind was used by the protesters in 6/4? And even if the protesters only used the top-of-the-line tricked-out versions, what more does it add to the fact that 6/4 was a day of violence? You still can’t generalize the entire event (which includes the weeks leading up to it) as wholly violent, nor wholly peaceful.

    Here’s the chicken and egg question: would the cocktails have been thrown, had the army not moved in? Your rebuttal would be: would the army have moved in, had the protesters not congregated to begin with? To which I’d say: would the protesters have protested, had the government done a better job of addressing their grievances…we could go on all day.

    As for the fourth paragraph, you should really put it to music, cuz it was oddly melodramatic.

    “On the internet, it was everywhere for a few weeks.” – no doubt. One need look no further than websites such as this one. But JXie was referring to media, and I was referring to Canadian media. Now, my focus is on the hockey playoffs, so I can’t discount the possibility that it has been everywhere and I haven’t been paying attention. But I haven’t noticed much coverage of 6/4 even inadvertently as i’ve been scrolling towards the sports pages.

  170. colin Says:

    Alright listen up everyone,

    Are you ready for another western media demonization campaign? 6/4 is about there, and exaggerated accounts of the “evil do-ings” of china is hot and flying off the press. For example:

    “The reverent crowds that show up in the chill before sunrise to watch do not seem to be aware at all that 20 years ago the pavement on which they stand was soaked in blood, that crushed bicycles and injured demonstrators lay all about, that trucks filled with soldiers careered wildly along the grand avenues, rifles blazing in all directions, and that the square was ringed with tanks and armored cars — all directed at a few thousand defenseless young campaigners for freedom and democracy.”

    http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-oe-winchester31-2009may31,0,6987201.story

  171. colin Says:

    Great vid.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sYKUt2eJtc

  172. MutantJedi Says:

    Nice post raventhorn4000.

    The Economist…
    http://www.economist.com/world/asia/displaystory.cfm?story_id=13754101
    They mention the massacre of hundreds of Beijing citizens by Chinese soldiers instead of thousands.

    Earlier this month its chief executive, Donald Tsang, apologised after an uproar over his seemingly innocuous suggestion that many Hong Kong citizens believed Tiananmen “took place a long time ago” and that China had made “remarkable achievements” since then. Many in Beijing would certainly agree with Mr Tsang. But unlike those in Hong Kong, they have not tasted democracy.

    Still, it is a democracy narrative in the West.

    Global Times has a 6.4 story: http://www.globaltimes.cn/www/english/top-news/2009-05/433565.html

    June 4 Incident broke out in 1989 and after that intellectuals in China “switched to silence”, according to Zhang Liping.

    “Intellectuals no longer discussed ‘isms’ publicly, and shifted their focus to academic issues,” she said. “Some people worried that China might slip backward.”

  173. MutantJedi Says:

    Raj… yes… perhaps I overplayed the righteousness card a bit. On something like 6.4 especially, I don’t buy into simple viewpoints like the government was wrong in its action because innocent people died. Similarly I don’t accept that I’m callous or unsympathetic when I state that a violent conclusion ought to have been fully anticipated by the leadership of the protestors.

    I do hope that the day will come that the government’s reaction to things it does not like won’t be a vacuum. The problem with vacuums is that it tends to get filled with someone else’s message and nobody really believes the official message. These days it is especially stupid to create a vacuum of information as every troll, 愤青, or blogger/reporter will quickly fill it with speculation.

    For example, why is youtube blocked? BBC will tell you because its about Tibet. Who knows what the real reason is? But let us all fill the vacuum with speculation. Seriously. Let us. Personally, I think some river crab with fragile nuts is in a snit about mud grass horses. Or maybe someone in youku has enough guanxi to get the plug pulled. Another problem with covering your nuts is after awhile you have to explain why you’re standing there with your hands like that.

    (not accusing anybody of speculation on 6.4 here)

  174. Wukailong Says:

    @colin (#171): I’d like to watch the video, but unfortunately it’s stopped by the benevolent authorities that want to stop western media demonization campaigns from reaching me. I can use Tor to watch it, but it’s goddamn slow.

    @MutantJedi (#173): All I think we can conclude is that the Chinese internet blockers move in mysterious ways. blogspot has been stopped for about two weeks. Things like this happens on a regular basis; I’m happy I can surf the net without hassle at work, where we’re using a Singaporean network, but I don’t want to (and I shouldn’t) use that for entertainment purposes.

  175. pug_ster Says:

    @MutantJedi 172

    I wouldn’t call the globaltimes article a 6.4 article per say, but rather an article that explains why it happened in the first place. But good link. I think that the article in globaltimes explains what happened between 1978 to 1989 is the result called ‘The Shock Doctrine,’ when a society turns into a Milton Freeman’s free market society overnight and how the society is unable to cope with. In China’s case, it change from a socialist state to more of a free-thinking democratic which hit a double wammy. In any case, China didn’t follow for more pragmatic approach of a centrally planned industrialization of Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.

  176. colin Says:

    @Wukailong

    Here is the transcript of the video:

    BEIJING June 4, 1989 — It was early Summer in the capital city. Tens of thousands of ordinary citizens, many with their entire families, squatted on vacant public buildings and land and set up a makeshift village, at the foot of the seat of power, and in the shadow of important monuments.

    They demanded an audience with their government and the passage of certain legislation. To the heads of government and the press, they were agitators with a political agenda that threatened to disrupt and endanger the nation.

    After their demands were rejected, the protesters did not leave their encampments. The head of government, refusing to meet with them, called on the national army to disperse the crowds. Soldiers charged with bayonets while tanks and tear gas chased crowds and leveled tents and shacks. Fires burned the camps to the ground.

    In the aftermath, scores were dead, including at least two infants suffocated in the gas attack. The total number killed remains unknown.

    THE INCIDENT described above occurred in Washington, DC, on July 28, 1932.

    The military commanders who executed the removal of the “Bonus Expeditionary Force,” as the protesters called themselves, were three of the United States’ greatest heroes: Douglas MacArthur, Dwight Eisenhower, and George Patton. Eisenhower later became one of the most popular USA Presidents and defined an era that emphasized order and conformity.

    There were no television cameras and satellites to relay images of what happened in the USA capital that summer day.

    A few newspapers condemned President Hoover’s response but the event was quickly put to rest. Since then, there have been no anniversary remembrances and there is no monument in Washington, DC, to the victims.

    Most Americans have never heard of the Bonus Army and its fate.

    Neither the USA nor China has much experience handling large unsanctioned demonstrations. Riots are rare in both countries but when they occur they are often put down with brute force.

    When Chicago police fought protesters at the Democratic Party national convention in 1968, crowds chanted “the whole world is watching.” The young protesters believed television would shame the authorities by broadcasting their actions.

    But two years later students were gunned down during protests at Kent State University in Ohio.

    Throughout the 1960s and early 1970s riots were put down in USA cities, including the capital, with troops and tanks.

    It had been almost twenty years since that era, and almost two generations since the 1932 suppression in the USA capital, when world audiences watched the protests in Tiananmen Square unfold on television in the Summer of 1989.

    Western media, frustrated by Russian restrictions on covering the “glasnost” movement in the Soviet Union, diverted all attention to the growing crowds in Tiananmen, assisted by an almost uncontrolled flow of information via fax machines, email, and even cell phones.

    The ensuing media blitz created the allure of a Chinese “Woodstock” complete with rock music, motorcycle riders (the “Flying Tigers,” Beijing’s “Hell’s Angels” who patrolled the square), and a heady dose of “flower power.”

    When the Chinese government decided to order the army to end the demonstrations and dispel the crowds, which it believed were out of control, most viewers were horrified.

    The prize winning Associated Press photograph of a lone Chinese man standing down a tank in the square has come to define China for many Americans. What an awful place, they believe, to send in tanks when all the people want is change.

    Of course, the question is how would the government of the USA or any other government respond if over one million people were camped out at the very seat of power, demanding an overthrow of the leadership?

    In Washington, DC, such an event is an impossibility. Marches on the USA capitol must be approved and coordinated in advance with the assistance of Congress, several police forces (city, Park Service, Capitol Police, Secret Service) with preparations for toilets, parking, crowd and traffic control in place.

    If a spontaneous protest on the scale of Tiananmen ever did occur in Washington, DC, it would be dealt with no differently and probably much more swiftly.

    This June marks the eighteenth (18) anniversary of the end of the Tiananmen Square demonstrations. Anniversaries are important in the USA where each decade is marked as though it was a distinct era.

    Each year at the anniversary of the riots, the American press prepares special reports in every major newspaper, television news show, and news web site to mark the occasion.

    When this article was first posted, on the tenth anniversary in 1999, the USA press was certain that remembrance would spark several news stories in China. But the anniversary passed, in China at least, largely without notice.

    In Tiananmen Square that year, a man tossed leaflets about corruption and was detained, another displayed slogans on an umbrella. The square itself was under extensive renovation in anticipation of the 50th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic and closed to the public.

    In the years since June 1989 China has changed enormously.

    Since that time the USA and the world have witnessed several genocides (Rwanda and Bosnia for example).

    Yet Americans are peculiarly fixated on what happened in Tiananmen Square that summer in 1989.

    It is time to stop dwelling on this one particular event in modern Chinese history. We must look at our own past, see our own experiences, and not pass judgement blindly.

    In the words of the memorial to the Kent State massacre, we should “Inquire, Learn, Reflect”

  177. raventhorn4000 Says:

    MatthewTan,

    “There is something I don’t like when Chinese start to boast. Worse still when boasting is unwarranted. Actually China lacked talented leaders for too much of its history. Otherwise China will not have 150 years of humiliation. Why lack of talents? Because only sons of Emperors become emperors.”

    I would not characterize 150 years of humiliation in the hands of foreigners as “lacking in Talents for China”.

    If I’m beaten up by a mob of irrational militant crazy nuts on the street, it is NOT because I have no Talent.

    Please, read up on people like Wellington Gu, or Lu Xun.

    And just because the other guy has bigger better guns, doesn’t make them “talented”.

  178. Wukailong Says:

    @colin: Wow, thanks!

  179. Rhan Says:

    “Also, in Malaysia, democracy seems to benefit the poor Malay majority to the disadvantage of richer Chinese, relatively.”

    Wrong, in Malaysia, democracy seems to benefit the already rich Malay and their very rich Chinese cronies.

  180. JXie Says:

    @MatthewTan #161

    Pardon my low IQ. I don’t understand you and the image.

    “Please Give Generously” – give what? or is it trying to say “please buy US treasury”?

    “maybe just maybe it makes people avoid facing the image of today.” – you mean, “today” China is still “communist”, not “democratic”?

    Belated reply…

    Oh no, it had to be my communication skill if I can’t convey my ideas clearly, not you.

    I didn’t draw the Economist cover page, so your guess in a way is as good as mine. _I think_ it means in this over-the-top China’s (condescending) view of world, America is just a beggar — hence “Please Give Generously”.

    Was in a bit hurry and the original message was stuck in the SPAM queue initially so I didn’t get to proofread it. My point was, a lot of Westerns especially Americans, have their heads stuck in the image of 1989, which is comforting to their egos subconciously. In 1989, Chinese youths are elites admired America almost unconditionally, hence the image of Goddess of Democracy; and in 2009, if anything concern over a good chunk of the international saving devalued due to the Latin-Americanization of the US, hence the image of Stature of Liberty showing a sign “Please Give Generously”.

    Sometimes I wonder searching for the “oppressed” Chinese and blowing a few cases here and there way out of proportion nowadays, and making early June an annual ritual, is nothing but a narcissistic ego trip.

  181. pug_ster Says:

    @Rhan,

    There are already 2 threads in FM about Malaysia. Interesting debate that democracy does not fix issues about ethnic problems and how this kind of deep seated hatred still exist…

    http://blog.foolsmountain.com/2008/09/14/can-democracy-be-the-solution-to-malays-ethnic-problems/

    http://blog.foolsmountain.com/2008/09/11/malaysias-ethnic-politics/

  182. EugeneZ Says:

    Shortly after 6/4, I heard from official broadcast that the death toll was around 200-300. I did not believe it because I was so angry. Also, I believed in VOA and other western media back then much more than Official Chinese Media.

    However, over the past 20 years, I have learned a few things, and read various sources of information about 6/4. Last year, during the TIbet riot, I had chance to get to know about western media in much more depth.

    It is almost funny, but I have concluded that most likely the official death toll of 200-300 is quite accurate. After all, the governmnet has told the truth. In fact, I have realized that Chinese Government tend to almost always tell truth when it comes to hard numbers like this, at least after the cultural revolution ended.

    By th way, Kui, I really appreciate your personal account of your experience in 1989.

  183. JXie Says:

    @EugeneZ

    The official death toll (about 300 including PLA soldiers) was then announced by the State Council spokesman Yuan Mu (袁木). To this day, I still remember his expression and his voice on TV when he first said that. My first reaction was much the same as yours — that lying bastard. Almost 20 years later, the verified death count (not including the soldiers) is at a bit less than 200. Chances are Yuan Mu then was actually the only one who was telling the truth. Who would have thought…

  184. Rhan Says:

    Thanks pug_ster, I discover FM only few days back.

    Some Malaysian Chinese who are educated in the West believe that the Western worldview is the ultimate truth. They ride a high horse by telling the Malay and Muslim what is the right and best way without a good grasp of history what we Chinese went through, particularly in the last 200 years.

    On 6.4, I was very sad and angry too but a friend’s comment really wakes me up. Do you expect the old communist that through death to life several times will bow and acknowledge their appreciation to you by just telling them democracy this and democracy that? If you don’t give your opponent a way out, you must prepare to bear the consequence.

    By saying this, I still believe that democracy is with mechanism to adjust itself for good, generally speaking.

  185. admin Says:

    Just saw this piece on the Guardian via the PKD ( http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jun/02/tiananmen-square-protests-1989-china ). It was written by Chinese novelist Ma Jian. In that, Ma claimed he interviewed with a former PLA soldier, who was 17 in 1989 and only a few months in the army. Here is a paragraph that caught my eye.

    “There were 7,000 of us,” he told me, lighting a new cigarette from the glowing stub of his last one, “and I was given the job of transporting our 4,000 assault rifles to the Great Hall. I dressed myself up as a student and loaded the guns on to a public bus the army had appropriated. As the driver edged through the packed crowds of students on Changan Avenue, I was terrified that they might jump up and spot the rifles stacked along the floor, so I leaned out and gave them a cheerful victory sign. When we reached the back yard of the Great Hall and locked the gates, I spent two hours unloading the guns, armful by armful. They were brand new. By the end, I was drenched in oil.”

    How believable is the story to you?

  186. Brad Says:

    @admin 185

    I don’t know what the commander was thinking: assigning a 17 year old kid, who had just been in the army for a few months, to transport 4000 rifles for such a crucial operation on Tiananmen Square. Let him go through the oceans of student demonstrators risking losing all of the firearms in the crowd. Especially when the other option clearly exists: let the soldiers bring their own weapons with them (which was what actually happened. I personally met army trucks approaching Tiananmen Square from outskirts, ChaoYang district, loaded with soldiers with arms. That was in May, and the crowd eventually talked and persuaded them to turn back. Everyone clapped and cheered for the turning away PLAs.) As far as I can see, the story of the 17 year old soldier is BS.

  187. admin Says:

    @brad,

    This paragraph has many other holes as well. For example, assault rifles are not pistols. They are much bigger (an AK-47 measures 10.5″ H x 34.25″ W x 3″ D). There is no way 4,000 rifles can be packed into a bus without being spotted through the window. Interestingly, the soldier noticed the guns were new and he was drenched in oil when he unloaded the guns. But it seems it did not take any effort for him to load the rifles onto the bus.

    Unfortunately, stories like this were published by respected newspapers such as the Guardian and passed around in the English blog sphere as if it were the verified truth.

  188. barny chan Says:

    Admin, I agree that The Guardian (who have form for dodgy reporting – try googling joffe+walt+taishi), along with other news organisations should subject their submitted stories to more scrutiny, but I’d also suggest you subject your own articles to an equal degree of scrutiny.

    Even if we accept as true (and why should we without more detail?) kui’s account of his participation in the events of 89, why do you not require a greater degree of detail to back up vague claims about an “Australian high school textbook” that cites “thousands killed by the communist government”? Surely it would add more weight if kui could identify the offending book…

  189. admin Says:

    @barny,

    Sure, that’s why we welcome people post comments to challenge and scrutinize each post. Not only we expect our post authors to adhere to higher standard, we also expect some of our commentators to improve their behavior. Please read our new “rules” thread for details. Thank you.

  190. barny chan Says:

    Thanks admin, I look forward to this being an abuse-free zone.

    OK kui, can you identify the “Australian high school textbook” and the offending page that cites “thousands killed by the communist government”? I’m sure I’m not the only one who’d like to know what it’s called and where it fits into the Australian school syllabus.

  191. foobar Says:

    Unloading 4000 rifles in 2 hours is awesomely efficient too. You have to spend less than 2 secs per. I’ve counted sheep slowlier than that.

  192. fdingle Says:

    我是来打酱油的。

  193. Wahaha Says:

    SKC, #165

    Please show me several ariticles that proved the greatness of democracy, by facts, not by words like ‘ voting ‘ or ‘freedom’.

    Thx

  194. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Wahaha:
    what, just so you can rip up the stuff I’d dig up like what I do to your’s? Nah, I’m happy just to debunk your stuff, if you choose to keep serving them up. Besides, anything I might quote would prove just as little as the stuff you share.

  195. admin Says:

    @foobar,

    Well, the story tellers in the NYT apparently were reading this thread; so in this version of the story ( http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/04/world/asia/04soldier.html?pagewanted=2 ), the need of bullets for guns is acknowledged but no numbers are provided in case readers have elementary math skills. ;)

    He said he was the only passenger in a double-length bus with its seats removed and its interior filled to the windowsills with guns and ammunition.

  196. Wukailong Says:

    Sorry to be snarky but… how do you prove the greatness of like, anything?

    Today I realized that I the thing I don’t like about the system here (in China) is exactly the blocking, lack of free speech in key areas and the level of surveillance. These are things that exist in other places too, but there are grades that really make things different. There are also things I like about the system.

    Most of the criticism against free speech I’ve heard basically boils down to these points:

    1. Rich people control the media. Yes, here as in the US or anywhere else, but that doesn’t muffle me.
    2. Free speech is really messy and all sorts of stupid ideas pop up. This is what I refer to as the esthetic argument. The problem is, there’s exactly the same problem here in the areas where you basically have free speech. Should there be some sort of board that made sure all ideas expressed are well-researched and/or reasonable? This issue has been raised with the Internet a couple of times, but does somebody take it seriously?

  197. JXie Says:

    @Wukailong #196

    I am totally with you on this one. Personally own a few servers in different places so that I can access blocked contents indirectly when in China — kind of like my own personal tor if you will. But it’s annoying as hell.

  198. raventhorn4000 Says:

    WKL,

    “1. Rich people control the media. Yes, here as in the US or anywhere else, but that doesn’t muffle me.”

    Doesn’t help you either. Indeed, the mass media is easily wielded by the State to conduct persecutions of individuals by trial by mob opinion, and influencing mob opinion.
    Doesn’t muffle you? No one will hear you.

    “2. Free speech is really messy and all sorts of stupid ideas pop up. This is what I refer to as the esthetic argument. The problem is, there’s exactly the same problem here in the areas where you basically have free speech. Should there be some sort of board that made sure all ideas expressed are well-researched and/or reasonable? This issue has been raised with the Internet a couple of times, but does somebody take it seriously?”

    Even forums have rules, or they drown themselves in chaos.

    The only rule for the mass media now is generally just MONEY. All kinds of rumors and lies are being spread around, just about Western societies themselves.

    No, nobody takes truth seriously in Western mass media, as long as the information sells.

    And people don’t want truth, they want entertainment. Messy drama as entertainment, for which they will pay.

  199. barny chan Says:

    Kui, your reluctance to identify the “Australian high school textbook” that cites “thousands killed by the communist government” goes a long way to confirming my belief that you simply made this up.

    You say that you “have grown a strong nauseated feeling towards this kind of distortion over the last 10 years”, well, I’m equally nauseated that you appear to be using the memory of the dead of 89 as nothing but a trojan horse to demonise both the student leaders and western supporters of democracy. Shameful…

  200. Wukailong Says:

    @raventhorn4000 (#198):

    “Doesn’t help you either. Indeed, the mass media is easily wielded by the State to conduct persecutions of individuals by trial by mob opinion, and influencing mob opinion.
    Doesn’t muffle you? No one will hear you.”

    Well, I think people tend to confuse freedom of the press with freedom of speech. Whether I’m heard is a different thing – I think it is a problem that not enough people are heard, but it’s even worse if they are stopped by or being harassed by the authorities. I don’t care if people read my blog or not, but I care if it’s muted.

    As for the press being controlled by the state, there are different power relationships in different states. Russia and China are effectively state-controlled, whereas the US ones seem to be more about big media companies.

    I don’t think blogs in general deserve their messianic pretensions, but at least in Sweden there have been cases where blog storms have influenced media to actually listen. I think it’s the same thing with media as anything else – you need counter-forces to make it accountable.

    “No, nobody takes truth seriously in Western mass media, as long as the information sells.”

    It’s not just “Western” media. I see a problem with media in general as soon as it becomes a force of its own. But if it is as you say, that people want it this way, then there really isn’t much hope for change.

  201. kui Says:

    barny.

    I do have problem to recall the name of the text book. I even called the young fellow(he is my friend’s son) who was a high school student but he could not remember it either. I think you need some background knowledge. In Australia every high school chooses their own text book and as far as I know the school authority has the choice. The Australian government (should)has nothing to do with it. I did not accuse the Australian government of anything at all. So, your conclusion is if I can not tell you the name and the author of the textbook then I must have made it up? Do you always get your conclusion this way?

    Did I make it up? If you want to find out how the event was reported in the west then I suggest you google “thousands killed Tiananmen square”. Do you think “thousands killed” is a distortion? If you think the number “thousands” is a distortion then you can find out easily who has been delievering the distortion and how widespread it is. I can not believe you are so blind to reality.

    I demonise the student leaders or the supporters of democracy? Can you point out where it is? In the essay or in my comments? Where? Can you point out? I have every single rights to critisize the student leaders and I did not critisize them much at all. How did I demonise them? Can you point out? When did I ever mention the supporters of democracy? I demonise them as well?

    barny. I stand by every single word I said.

    I have busy schedule over the weekend and next week. I will find time to respond to your post. Do not be surprised if you get late responses. If you think you have find a gold mine then let us dig into it.

    One more thing, I found your post 199 a personal attack designed to discredit me. The known fact is that it has been widely reported in the west”thousands killed in Tiananmen square” with very little or no evidence to support it. I believe this is a distortion.

  202. barny chan Says:

    kui: “your conclusion is if I can not tell you the name and the author of the textbook then I must have made it up? Do you always get your conclusion this way?”

    My conclusion comes from the general tone of your comments coupled with a lack of verifiable facts.

    “Did I make it up? If you want to find out how the event was reported in the west then I suggest you google “thousands killed Tiananmen square”.”

    Now you’re wriggling and attempting to shift ground. Your claim wasn’t with regard to western media reporting in 89, it was that an “Australian high school textbook” cited “thousands killed by the communist government”. If you make this claim you have to expect to asked to back it up. Up to now you haven’t been able to do so.

    “I demonise the student leaders or the supporters of democracy? Can you point out where it is?…Where? Can you point out?…How did I demonise them? Can you point out?…”

    With pleasure my forgetful friend: “The one who threw the egg walks away with what exactly he wanted…It had happened so many times and will happen many times on world political stage because the moral stand and motive of the one (usually dressed up in democracy) who throws egg has never been examed or challenged.”

    “I found your post 199 a personal attack designed to discredit me.”

    If you feel that a request to back up your claims is a personal attack it really isn’t my problem.

  203. kui Says:

    So, barny, you find the student leaders fitted well into that thrower and egg description? What make you think I was referring the student leaders or people who support democracy? Are you sure about it? You must have evidence backing your claim? So tell me if I was referring to the student leaders what did I mean by saying “will happen many times on world political stage ……” Did you even understand what I said before you accused me of demonising the student leaders and people who support democracy?

    If I fail to find the name of the author then you can claim that I fail to give evidence to back it up. But to draw a conclusion that I make it up is a completely different thing. You are accusing me of lying. And this is a personal attack. Do you remember the names of the text books you have used? The names of the authors? If you no longer keep a copy of it then is it an easy thing to find it? This is the very first essay I have ever written and posted on internet. I think I have gained experience from people like you.

    I am not trying to shift ground. I stay firm that I did see this kind of words from an Australian text book and I do have problems finding that book to back it up. You can claim it 1000 times that I can not provide evidence to back it up and I will not have a problem with it. I feel your post 199 a personal attack because you accuse me of making it up.

    You havenot answered my question. Do you believe “thousands killed in Tiananmen” is a distortion? Can you answer that question in your next post?

  204. raventhorn4000 Says:

    WKL,

    “Well, I think people tend to confuse freedom of the press with freedom of speech. Whether I’m heard is a different thing – I think it is a problem that not enough people are heard, but it’s even worse if they are stopped by or being harassed by the authorities. I don’t care if people read my blog or not, but I care if it’s muted.”

    Western legal systems balance the need of the society with the right of the individual speech. That’s no different from China, the difference is how much they value need of society. And there is no universal right/wrong on that view. For example, France BAN all Nazi related speech, US allows them. Germany bans practice of Scientology, US allows them. Why? Because France has a more personal negative valuation of Nazi speech in their history, and they decided to BAN the speech.

    The point is, your individual speech is also being evaluated against “need of society”, and if you should get “out of line” against the society, no matter where, your speech will be gone in a second, by a determination of a court.

    Other speech not protected (in US): Speech likely to incite imminent lawlessness (including inciting mobs and riots), Fighting words, Defamation, invasion of privacy speech, etc.

    “As for the press being controlled by the state, there are different power relationships in different states. Russia and China are effectively state-controlled, whereas the US ones seem to be more about big media companies.”

    Well, a control by any other name is still the same.

    “I don’t think blogs in general deserve their messianic pretensions, but at least in Sweden there have been cases where blog storms have influenced media to actually listen. I think it’s the same thing with media as anything else – you need counter-forces to make it accountable.”

    I don’t know what a “blog storm” in Sweden would look like. Not to belittle Sweden, but that’s not a country with much great controversy.

    ““No, nobody takes truth seriously in Western mass media, as long as the information sells.” It’s not just “Western” media. I see a problem with media in general as soon as it becomes a force of its own. But if it is as you say, that people want it this way, then there really isn’t much hope for change.”

    Some people choose to believe in the common man for the hope of the future and change.

    But that is entirely dependent upon whether the common man is able to pull himself up by the bootstraps and do something.

    Here lies the problem. A Western Democracy today with its free press system is more likely to make the common man either docile or apathetic, or both. Society feed the feeling of “entitlement”, rather than “self-struggle”.

    When a man has to scrape and earn his hard living, he would be unafraid to assert his rights.

    When a man was given his welfare by the champions of the free system, he does not know his rights, he only knows obedience to the system.

    It seems a contradiction, but it isn’t.

    The Western nations are increasingly “socialistic”, more so than China. That breeds dependency of the common man to the state.

    The ONLY hope you can have for such “common man” is that if they one day throw off that dependency and do something about their lives’ problems. That’s when you will truly have new ideas, new solutions, new energy in the system.

    Otherwise, all the “free speech” in the world would not amount to a hill of beans. Mere camp fire stories and dirty jokes by men drunk on elixir of Democracy.

  205. raventhorn4000 Says:

    WKL,

    I should add that really it’s not about “socialism” or any other philosophy. It’s about “dependency on the state”.

    History tells us, that Republics degenerate when the Common man becomes dependent upon the state, or the state’s dictators. That’s the truly dangerous and vicious cycle.

    To appease the common man, the state provide ever more “bread and circuses”. Thus increasing cost and further degenerate the populous’ ability to provide for themselves and fight for their own.

    Rome went that way, to the point that it had to depend on Barbarian tribes to defend its borders.

    Oddly enough, the Chinese Imperial system seemed to have been far less in “bread and circuses” in its 5000 years of history.

    Perhaps that explains why China keeps coming back as an unified nation, time after time.

    The Common Man of China keeps his cultural historical heritage, against all adversity of invaders and internal strife.

  206. barny chan Says:

    kui Says: “barny, you find the student leaders fitted well into that thrower and egg description? What make you think I was referring the student leaders or people who support democracy?”

    This will be a lot easier if we’re both absolutely direct and concise. Who were you referring to?

    “If I fail to find the name of the author then you can claim that I fail to give evidence to back it up. But to draw a conclusion that I make it up is a completely different thing”

    When an anonymous author references an unnamed book then there’s no reason why I should take their claims at face value. I know nothing whatsoever about you.

    “Do you remember the names of the text books you have used? The names of the authors? If you no longer keep a copy of it then is it an easy thing to find it?”

    If you publish an essay you’ll be held to higher standards of verification than if you’re chatting to friends. If you can’t verify a claim that you’d like to make, then you have two options: one, simply don’t make the claim; two, make the claim in the full knowledge that that it will adversely effect your credibility.

    “I feel your post 199 a personal attack because you accuse me of making it up.”

    As I don’t know who you are, by definition I can’t make a personal attack on you.

    “Do you believe “thousands killed in Tiananmen” is a distortion? Can you answer that question in your next post?”

    Yes, I’ll happily answer this question, but first, a preamble: The initial draft of history comes in the form of contemporary news coverage, and, inevitably, it’s often inaccurate. 9/11 is a good illustration of this. The first estimates of fatalities were wildly overblown, but were quickly (days, weeks) revised downwards to a more accurate figure. The relative openness of American society made it a straightforward and rapid task to arrive at a more accurate figure. Surely you can accept that the political system in China made (and still makes) the process of gauging an accurate estimate of the Beijing deaths in 89 far more difficult. With this in mind, my answer is no, I don’t believe that references to “thousands killed in Tiananmen” is necessarily a distortion. The word distortion implies a deliberate attempt to mislead, and most current western media references to the events of 89 cite a death toll in the hundreds.

  207. MatthewTan Says:

    @185 Admin,

    I read Ma Jian, thinking that it was an eye-witness account from himself or his good friend. Until I realize he was writing fiction – when he mentioned that the Goddess of democracy was crushed by the tanks. This is not true.

    THE GODDESS OF DEMOCRACY STATUE WAS PUSHED DOWN BY THE TROOPS USING BARE HANDS.

    You can see this in the video series:

    [Very good video from PLA with the following intro:
    由解放軍縂政治部拍攝的珍貴官方片斷,雖然片中官方有意"忽略" 了部隊使用過份武力的片段,但也提醒我們重新思考,支聯會年年反 復播放的片段中,是否也有意"忽略"了部分史實?偏聼則暗兼聼則明,無論大陸抑或港澳臺和海外的華人都應該對所謂"反革命暴亂" 或者"屠城"的偏激看法作一次重新的認識。 ]

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=otTbOxLesg0&feature=related
    換個角度看六四 八九天安門事件解放軍縂政治部資料片(二) at 6:20 minutes.

    Remember to spread the words the Ma Jian was writing fiction, and Guardian treated it as if it was factual eye-witness account.

  208. Wukailong Says:

    raventhorn4000:

    “I don’t know what a “blog storm” in Sweden would look like. Not to belittle Sweden, but that’s not a country with much great controversy.”

    If you’re not interested in any examples I might give, then I honestly don’t feel there’s much use discussing them. It doesn’t seem we’re going to convince the other, so no need to waste time on this.

  209. raventhorn4000 Says:

    WKL,

    Actually, I’m very interested in the “blog storm”, even if I doubt its true significance of effect.

    I’m open to it as an “example”.

  210. kui Says:

    barny

    “As I don’t know who you are, by definition I can’t make a personal attack on you.”

    Are you saying there is no personal attacks on the internet because bloggers donot really know each other?

    Barny, you said “When an anonymous author references an unnamed book then there’s no reason why I should take their claims at face value. I know nothing whatsoever about you.”
    “If you publish an essay you’ll be held to higher standards of verification than if you’re chatting to friends. If you can’t verify a claim that you’d like to make, then you have two options: one, simply don’t make the claim; two, make the claim in the full knowledge that that it will adversely effect your credibility.”

    Unfortunately, I did not even re-read my essay before I email it to admin. The text was written in Febuary before I went to my China trip. I did not think my little writting was worth to be published. When I read another well written 6.4 article at FM in in May I decided to drop it completely. Then I received an email from admin asked me to re-consider posting an essay. I did a grammar and spelling check and post it.
    I know what I got myself into. It is quite difficult to find contents of high school history textbook on the internet. The companies basically wants people to purchase the books rather than letting anyone read it on line. When my little friend told me he could not remember the name of the book I knew that is it. I guess I learn from this.

    It was a personal attack when you called me trojan horse and claimed that I make things up. You can challenge my credibility when I failed to provide the name of the book and author. But if you claim I make things up you need some hard evidence. You need at least prove or at least believe that no historian in Australian had never used “thousands killed” in their books. But you said “The initial draft of history comes in the form of contemporary news coverage, and, inevitably, it’s often inaccurate.” You do agree that ‘thoughsands killed” was widely reported by media and human rights group and you believe this has never been quoted in history books? barny, I am not trying to shift ground. If you achowledge that it was widely reported as “thousands killed” then you should know that there was a possibility this information could had been used in history text book. I can see a bizarre twist of logic in your post.

    “9/11 is a good illustration of this. The first estimates of fatalities were wildly overblown, but were quickly (days, weeks) revised downwards to a more accurate figure. The relative openness of American society made it a straightforward and rapid task to arrive at a more accurate figure. Surely you can accept that the political system in China made (and still makes) the process of gauging an accurate estimate of the Beijing deaths in 89 far more difficult. With this in mind, my answer is no”

    What a proud system. There was journalists on the square that night and they knew there were no students killed on the square and why ‘thousands killed in the Tiananmen square” were so widely reported and these journalists only manage to cut the number down in recent years? This distortion has nothing to do with the Chinese government but was purely manufactured by the western system. You never doubt why the systems makes mistakes? Why there is a war based on a lie? Why didnot the openness of American socienty save them from a such costly war? Barny, democracy is good. I still believe in democracy, but, please, if you want to sell American brand of democracy you got a wrong person here.

    You said “I don’t believe that references to “thousands killed in Tiananmen” is necessarily a distortion. The word distortion implies a deliberate attempt to mislead, and most current western media references to the events of 89 cite a death toll in the hundreds.”

    Distortion is the act of twisting out of natural/normal/original shape or condition. Whether it is deliberate is another issue. And, by the way how can you be sure it was not a deliberate act?

    Is it already clear to you that the egg was the students and the rock was PLA and CCP? Who was the thrower? Maybe in the future there would be more declassified documents then we can get a conclusion? I think you got quite upset when you interpreted the “egg-rock-thrower” as some sort of “demonising student leaders and people support democracy”. May be my answer upset you again? but that is my view.

    What do you think of those student leaders? Chai Ling once claimed that only student’s blood can wake up Chinese people and obviously she wanted to live. What do you think?

  211. barny chan Says:

    kui Says: “barny…Are you saying there is no personal attacks on the internet because bloggers donot really know each other?”

    I’m saying that in this case because I have no personal knowledge as to who you actually are I’m clearly not indulging in a personal attack. What I am doing is challenging your words.

    “Unfortunately, I did not even re-read my essay before I email it to admin…I did not think my little writting was worth to be published…I received an email from admin asked me to re-consider posting an essay.”

    I refer you to to post #189 in which admin responds to my questioning of Fool’s Mountain apparent lack of scrutiny of your essay with: “we welcome people post comments to challenge and scrutinize each post”. Personally, I think admin shouldn’t throw somebody such as yourself to the wolves – there should be a pre-vetting stage before publication.

    “It was a personal attack when you called me trojan horse and claimed that I make things up”

    I referred to your words as being a trojan horse not you. Again, this is not a personal attack.

    ” if you claim I make things up you need some hard evidence”

    No. You are the one making the proposition, therefore you have the responsibility to come up with the evidence. I’m not in a position to prove that your notional text book doesn’t exist, but you can, potentially, prove it does exist.

    “You do agree that ‘thoughsands killed” was widely reported by media and human rights group”

    Of course, and, by your own admission the same claim was made within China by Chinese sources: “I remember that morning I saw buses traveling around with messages painted in red. “Brutal government bloodbathed the Tiananmen square!” “Tens of thousands students killed on Tiananmen square””.

    “If you achowledge that it was widely reported as “thousands killed” then you should know that there was a possibility this information could had been used in history text book. I can see a bizarre twist of logic in your post.”

    There is no twist, bizarre or otherwise, in my logic. It’s been widely claimed that the earth is flat and the moon is made of blue cheese, but I don’t automatically assume that these claims are now likely to be in an Australian school text book.

    “There was journalists on the square that night and they knew there were no students killed on the square and why ‘thousands killed in the Tiananmen square” were so widely reported and these journalists only manage to cut the number down in recent years?”

    There were actually very few journalists on the spot (because of the nature of the regime in China), and most accounts came secondhand from protesters themselves.

    “This distortion has nothing to do with the Chinese government but was purely manufactured by the western system.”

    Again, I refer you to your earlier quote: “I remember that morning I saw buses traveling around with messages painted in red. “Brutal government bloodbathed the Tiananmen square!” “Tens of thousands students killed on Tiananmen square””. Unless you’re suggesting that these messages were painted by duplicitous western journalists, then your claim that this “distortion…was purely manufactured by the western system” has no merit whatsoever.

    “Why there is a war based on a lie? Why didnot the openness of American socienty save them from a such costly war?”

    There you go again. Shifting ground in an effort to shore up your empty rhetoric. If you want to open a debate on western imperialist warmongering then start another thread. It’s utterly irrelevant here.

    “please, if you want to sell American brand of democracy you got a wrong person here.”

    I’m not attempting to sell anything. I’m merely pointing out the gaping holes in your own dismal sales pitch.

    “Whether it is deliberate is another issue. And, by the way how can you be sure it was not a deliberate act?”

    One last time: you’re the one making the proposition, therefore you’re the one who needs to be sure.

    “Is it already clear to you that the egg was the students and the rock was PLA and CCP? Who was the thrower? Maybe in the future there would be more declassified documents then we can get a conclusion? I think you got quite upset when you interpreted the “egg-rock-thrower” as some sort of “demonising student leaders and people support democracy”. May be my answer upset you again?”

    The only thing that’s currently upsetting me is frustratingly having to lead you by the hand like a child. And yet again you shy away from being direct.

    “What do you think of those student leaders? Chai Ling once claimed that only student’s blood can wake up Chinese people and obviously she wanted to live. What do you think”

    My thoughts are too complex to expand upon in my reply here. But I do think Chai Ling is a way more impressive witness than you’ve proved to be.

  212. kui Says:

    barny.

    When you stated “you simply made this up” You are accusing me of lying. You need to provide evidence to support your claim. I do not have to prove myself innocent. This is a personal attack.

    “Again, I refer you to your earlier quote: “I remember that morning I saw buses traveling around with messages painted in red. “Brutal government bloodbathed the Tiananmen square!” “Tens of thousands students killed on Tiananmen square””. Unless you’re suggesting that these messages were painted by duplicitous western journalists, then your claim that this “distortion…was purely manufactured by the western system” has no merit whatsoever. ”

    What I meaned is that this distortion had no Chinese government’s input in it. If you think it has something to do with the rumors on the street(rumors made by Chinese?) then let’s be it.

    “There you go again. Shifting ground in an effort to shore up your empty rhetoric. If you want to open a debate on western imperialist warmongering then start another thread. It’s utterly irrelevant here.’

    You mentioned 9.11 which was completely related to TAM? Did you? So you did not shift ground? I did to shore up my empty rhetoric? Are we talking about democracy here? If I no longer crave American brand of democracy can I tell you why? I barely mentioned it with 2 sentences, did I? 扣帽子 is least convincing in a debate I belive. Openess? My friend, that is only on the surface. You and me do not know how much dirty business is well hidden as classified documents. You are not trying to sell it? Then how come your praise of USA system is so……

    “The only thing that’s currently upsetting me is frustratingly having to lead you by the hand like a child. And yet again you shy away from being direct.”

    You know what, barny, I come to this forum hoping to make friends, to vent my opinion and improve my English by engaging in debates. Compare with many bloggers here I do feel like a child trying to learn how to walk. I was not confident to publish my poor little writting until I was prompted by admin. I feel like to find a teacher to guide me, correct me and help me to improve. May be you think you are teaching a beginner a lesson. But look at the way you did it. If I had enough time I would dig out that book to prove my self. But I donot. Maybe I should not have post the essay.

    Your impressive witness is still suing the company that present her speeches in ” The gate of heavenly peace”. I believe the journalist who made the documentary should be equally impressive witness? But 欲加之罪 何患无辞?

    All the best, barny.

  213. barny chan Says:

    kui, given the level of debate you’re offering, I’m not sure why I’m bothering, but…

    “When you stated “you simply made this up” You are accusing me of lying. You need to provide evidence to support your claim. I do not have to prove myself innocent. This is a personal attack.”

    What I actually said was “your reluctance to identify the “Australian high school textbook” that cites “thousands killed by the communist government” goes a long way to confirming my belief that you simply made this up.” In that statement I’m acknowledging an element of doubt: I don’t know for sure whether you simply made it up; whether, you heard a vague rumour regarding this book; or whether it actually exists. On balance, I doubt that it does.

    “What I meaned is that this distortion had no Chinese government’s input in it. If you think it has something to do with the rumors on the street(rumors made by Chinese?) then let’s be it.”

    You’re shifting again. You said that the alleged “distortion” “was purely manufactured by the western system”, and clearly that excludes “rumors on the street…rumors made by Chinese”. The key word is “purely”, it’s an absolute. Now maybe you don’t understand the meaning of the word, but that isn’t my problem.

    “You mentioned 9.11 which was completely related to TAM? Did you? So you did not shift ground?”

    No, I didn’t shift ground at all. My reference to 9/11 was prefaced with the words “but first, a preamble”, making clear it wasn’t in itself a direct response to the issue at hand, but merely serving to provide context.

    “I did to shore up my empty rhetoric?”

    In my opinion, yes. And I believe a neutral person, on the evidence of your meandering path on this thread, would agree.

    “Are we talking about democracy here? If I no longer crave American brand of democracy can I tell you why? I barely mentioned it with 2 sentences, did I? 扣帽子 is least convincing in a debate I belive. Openess? My friend, that is only on the surface. You and me do not know how much dirty business is well hidden as classified documents. You are not trying to sell it? Then how come your praise of USA system is so……”

    I’m not talking democracy on this thread, and I’m not trying to sell it; I think the concept of democracy is strong enough to sell itself without a crude pitch from me. As for my supposed “praise of USA system”, my only reference up to now has been to the “relative openness of American society” compared to China. Surely even you can’t find this to be a controversial position? I’m not at all a supporter of mainstream American politics/values – it’s way too conservative a place for me – but it’s absolutely indisputable that there’s a great deal more freedom of verifiable information in America than in China.

    “You know what, barny, I come to this forum hoping to make friends, to vent my opinion and improve my English by engaging in debates…May be you think you are teaching a beginner a lesson. But look at the way you did it. If I had enough time I would dig out that book to prove my self. But I donot. Maybe I should not have post the essay.”

    Look, I’ve already made clear that I believe the admin of Fool’s Mountain shouldn’t throw people to the wolves, but it would be way more patronising of me if I didn’t challenge you for fear of upsetting you.

    “Your impressive witness is still suing the company that present her speeches in ” The gate of heavenly peace”. I believe the journalist who made the documentary should be equally impressive witness? But 欲加之罪 何患无辞?”

    Given the deluge of hostility that has been orchestrated in an attempt to discredit Chai Ling and others I’m not at all surprised that she uses every means possible to defend herself. Unlike you, she can’t hide behind anonymity…

  214. raventhorn4000 Says:

    “Given the deluge of hostility that has been orchestrated in an attempt to discredit Chai Ling and others I’m not at all surprised that she uses every means possible to defend herself. Unlike you, she can’t hide behind anonymity…”

    Given the deluge of hostility that has been orchestrated in an attempt to discredit Deng Xiaoping and others I’m not at all surprised that he used every means possible to defend himself. Unlike you, he can’t hide behind anonymity…

    By “hostility”, I do mean TAM protest. Afterall, how many protesters have shown up at Chai Ling’s door steps and workplace?

  215. barny chan Says:

    Raventhorn, in the unlikely event that Chai Ling engages lethal force resulting in the deaths of hundreds of unarmed protesters I’ll review my position.

  216. raventhorn4000 Says:

    Barny,

    you wrote that “she uses every means possible to defend herself”. I see no limitation to non-lethal force, if it was possible. (but of course, she had no problem with urging others to use any means, including Molotov cocktails, resulting in deaths of soldiers and her fellow students, to “defend the square”, while she hightails out of the country.)

    of course, it’s nice to know that so far, she is only willing to bankrupt people who made her look bad, and use a bunch of lawyers to do it.

    You should read and see how many CAPS you can find in that court document. :)

    Here is an excerpt from Chai Ling’s lawyers:

    “Your Web page uses JENZABAR, JENZABAR.COM, and JENZABAR.NET, in addition to Ms. Chai’s name, as metatags, in the title of the page, and in the URL. The marks JENZABAR and JENZABAR.COM have been registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and issued Registration Nos. 3108414 and 2557986 respectively.”

    http://www.tsquare.tv/film/jenzabar_letters_2007.html

  217. raventhorn4000 Says:

    A Forbes.com article reported:
    Chai Ling has spent years trying to cash in on her heroism at Tiananmen Square. But so far her web company has brought in little money and lots of lousy karma.

    Chai Ling would like total control over her biography. In her version, she risks her life leading student protests in Tiananmen Square in 1989, escapes China stowed in a crate and is twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Then she moves to America and marries a millionaire venture capitalist who bankrolls her promising internet startup. Alas, the market crashes before the company can go public, and it is unfairly besieged by lawsuits from former executives….

    “You’re not going to write about that, are you?” Chai says, when asked about the suits. “Do you really have to mention those things?” Chai’s seeming naiveté is a little out of character. She has frequently scored points in the press by recalling her glory days as onetime “commander-in-chief” of rebel students in Beijing.

    *Lawsuits from former executives….

    besieged…

    “Lousy Karma”, indeed.

  218. raventhorn4000 Says:

    http://www.nytimes.com/1995/04/30/world/6-years-after-the-tiananmen-massacre-survivors-clash-anew-on-tactics.html?pagewanted=all

    “If the students had left earlier, there wouldn’t have been a massacre,” said Robin Munro, the Hong Kong director of the New York-based Human Rights Watch, who was a witness to the events of 1989. “I wouldn’t take the next step and say the students are responsible for the massacre. But if they had left earlier, there would not have been a June 4 and the legacy of the movement, the icon of the massacre, would not be the same.”

    In 1993, Mr. Munro co-wrote a detailed account of the efforts by a number of Chinese intellectuals and student leaders to head off the military assault. These efforts failed not for lack of broad support, he argued, but because the most uncompromising of the student leaders, principally Ms. Chai and Mr. Li, would not agree to abandon the square.

    Five days before the military assault, according to the documentary, Ms. Chai told Philip Cunningham, an American journalist: “How can I tell them that what we are actually hoping for is bloodshed, the moment when the Government is ready to brazenly butcher the people? I feel that only when the square is awash with blood will the people of China open their eyes.”

    Referring to those who were trying to prevent violence, she said, “They are trying to cause our movement to disintegrate and get us out of the square before the Government is provoked to violence.”

    *
    *
    Sure, she didn’t engage in violence herself.
    But she ordered others to continue violence and denounced any attempt to prevent violence.

  219. Wukailong Says:

    @barny (#211): “Personally, I think admin shouldn’t throw somebody such as yourself to the wolves – there should be a pre-vetting stage before publication.”

    I don’t think that’s entirely fair. Screening articles before they’re published is a good thing, but I find kui’s posting valuable as a description of her experiences of the event and the subsequent thoughts. I think it’s quite well-written too. ;)

    As for Chai Ling, my viewpoints of her have been formed by the few books and documentaries I’ve read/watched. She doesn’t give a very favorable impression at all.

  220. barny chan Says:

    Wukailong, just to be clear, I’m not suggesting that kui’s account should not have been published, I’m suggesting that admin (who’s already stated that “I took liberty to modify the original text slightly”) might have anticipated that unverifiable claims would be firmly challenged and advised caution.

  221. kui Says:

    barny.

    The book name is:

    Retroactive1 Stage4: World History. First Edition.

    By Maureen Anderson. Ian Keese. Anne Low.

    Thanks to my young friend who found it for me.

    Banny, I did not make it up. It is not fair for me to prove that I am innocent.

    You now owe me an apology.

    Admin edited out my patriotic words such as “mother China”

  222. barny chan Says:

    kui, until you come up with the relevant passage nothing is proved.

  223. kui Says:

    barny.

    You asked for the name of the textbook and the authors. When I finally managed to get it then you ask for the relevant passage. I finally figure it out now, even if I manage to get the relevant passage you will say “how do I know you did not make it up?” If you want to claim that I simply made it up then you bear the burden to provide evidence. I have provided enough and now it is your turn.

  224. barny chan Says:

    kui, come up with the quote, chapter and page number. The burden of evidence remains with you.

  225. Brooks Goodale Says:

    Hi, great page however there is a issue whereby sometimes I am sent back to the base page when I look at other webpages in this site.

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