Liao Yiwu, poet, author of Bullets and Opium and former political prisoner, writes on the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen massacre.
My father died in the fall of 2002. At the last hour, he couldn’t speak any more, but he would fix his eyes on me, his son, the political prisoner. The police had searched me and taken me away in front of him many times. He died worried about me. Maybe in his last moments, when he couldn’t speak anymore, he still wanted to tell me not to provoke the Communist Party. Tank Man vanished into thin air—another proof my father was right.
On the square, it was a total carnival. It was around 11pm, a beautiful, warm Beijing evening. Student groups surged up and down in front of the Tiananmen Gate with banners and chants. Jim took copious notes as I translated for him. A squad of students passed us by with a banner that declared themselves to be the "Dare to Die Brigade". Everyone was animated and alive. In the midst of the madness, there was a sense of safety.Memoirs of Tiananmen Square by former Reuters Asia editor Graham Earnshaw. Pictures from the 1989 protests. Charlie Rose 1996 interview with 1989 US Ambassador in China James Lilley and student protest leader Chai Ling about documentary Gate of Heavenly Peace (excerpts) which criticized student leaders. Virtual Museum of China '89 (graphic images within). Declassified US government documents dealing with the events of 20 years ago and the aftermath. Recently the memoirs of 1989 Chinese premier Zhao Ziyang were published and he blames Li Peng, Deng Xiaoping and hardliners for the massacre. Finally, here's Cui Jian's 一无所有 (Nothing to My Name), the rock song that became the anthem of Tiananmen Square protesters. 六四: 我们 沒 忘 了
With the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown on Thursday, China's ever-vigilant censors have stepped up the reach of the "Great Firewall," blocking Western sites like Twitter, Flickr, and (just one day after its launch) Microsoft's Bing. via [more inside]
"Like the dotcom bubble, the disaster bubble is inflating in an ad-hoc and chaotic fashion." Journalist Naomi Klein discusses how corporations and governments are working together more closely than ever, using the mandate of catastrophe — whether natural or man-made — to further concentrate power in fewer hands, with less oversight: from illegal sales of American police technology to China to avert hypothetical tragedies during the Beijing Olympics, to the privatization of water supplies in post-tsunami Sri Lanka.
Those funny commies - china once again shows us how to do things with respect for the people. (newsfilter)