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Friday, June 6, 2014

Tiananmen Square Massacre Anniverary 2014

The Chinese people haven't forgotten about what happened in Tiananmen Square 25 years ago, every year the candlelight vigil gets bigger.  This year there were around 100,000 people who came to Victoria Park in Hong Kong to remember.

Incredibly, there was a small group of pro-Communist Party supporters near Victoria Park who played a video denying the deaths ever happened and asking the people to "let go of the burden" and forget the past.

Amnesty International says there were at least 66 people arrested in mainland China in connection to the anniversary and because of this, the regime thought that people would think twice before going to Hong Kong for fear of reprisals when they returned home, but it didn't work.

The Beijing government is pretending the pro-democracy massacre of 1989 didn't happen.  Citizens are not even allowed to discuss it and the state-run media blacked out television screens showing CNN and BBC footage of the event.  They actually believe that over time, people will forget it ever happened.

The only response from the Chinese government about what happened on that day remains the same - because they chose the path of "socialism with Chinese characteristics", a large proportion of their people have been lifted out of poverty and into the middle class.  And it's true, they have, and it would be so easy to admit their mistake, and move on.

At Tiananmen Square, permanent giant screens display party slogans and images of a prosperous, strong motherland.  A massive security network controls the internet.  The protest is not taught in schools and most Chinese are unaware of the sensitive anniversary date of June 4.

Beside the square, a single photograph is displayed which shows an elderly party leader Deng Xiaoping congratulating the troops who slaughtered the protesters and bystanders on the day that all hope of freedom died.