Wednesday, November 13, 2019
Tienanmen Square: Where was the Violence? :: essays research papers
Were civilian casualties more extensive inside or outside of Tiananmen Square on June 4th, 1989? A) Plan of Investigation Ã Ã Ã Ã Ã The bloodshed at Tiananmen Square in Beijing shocked the world. As a result of large-scale Chinese cover-up the public knew little about the deaths that occurred on the morning of June 4th 1989. The aim of this investigation is to find out where the casualties were most extensive. The information needed to answer this question would not be provided for 11 years after which documents began to surface helping explain the unknown tragedy. U.S. government documents surrounding the event were finally declassified. But even more importantly a collection of Chinese documents known as The Tiananmen Papers were leaked out of China. The research for this investigation comes from these two sets of documents. By analyzing both the US and China accounts, similarities and inconstancies will be identified and examined in an effort to find the most plausible answer. B) Summary of Evidence 1. On the Brink On the night of June 3rd, 1989 the communist nation China was on the brink of collapse. For months the capital city was saturated with millions of pro-democracy demonstrators. Students, intellectuals, and civilians had set up their democratic stronghold in the symbolic center of the country, Tiananmen Square. The overwhelming animosity against the communist party had shut down the nation, and embarrassed its leaders. The senior members of the Chinese politburo demanded that this uprising be subdued and disbanded. After months of fruitless efforts to resolve the matter peacefully the PeopleÃ¢â¬â¢s Liberation Army (PLA) was dispatched to clear Tiananmen Square and to put an end to the ever expanding trouble. The soldiers were instructed to be extremely disciplined, opening fire as the last resort (Liang, 370.) Additionally no bloodshed would be allowed in the Square itself because of its important symbolism. 2. To the Square The United States first received news about the violence in Beijing in a message from the US embassy in Beijing on the night of June 3rd 1989. The document reported that the PLA was using violent force to remove protestors as they moved on Tiananmen Square. Chinese tanks, APCs, trucks, and soldiers had met sizable civilian resistance. Thousands of protestors blockaded the PLA pelting the army with rocks, bottles, and molotov cocktails (Evans, Document 12.) Some proceeded to overturn and destroy military vehicles. Soldiers using automatic weapons fired into the mass of protestors. Demonstrators fell back slowly, continuing to fight for seven hours.