History Ia 2013
A. Plan of the investigation The focus of the study is on the event of the Tiananmen Square Massacre and how the Chinese Communist Party government shocked the world. Moreover, the study focuses on the aftermaths and the international effects like how the United States decided how to deal with this violent act or how this event possibly encouraged protestors to fight against their corrupt government. This research paper will evaluate the extent of how international countries were affected by this event.
Ranging from countries such as Germany to the United States, this investigation will encompass the mass effects and influences on other countries. Several of the sources used in the essay, include The Price of Heavenly Peace: Tiananmen Square 15 Years Later by Michael J. Thompson and a news article Where Capitalism Won, But Not Democracy interview of Robyn Meredyth about the Tiananmen Square Massacre. These sources will be identified for their origins, values, limitations, and credibility. B. Summary of Evidence On a night in June of 1989, the unthinkable happened.
Otherwise known as the June Fourth Incident, the Tiananmen Square Massacre was the bloody result of seven weeks of continuous rebellion of Communist Party of China’s policies. “Perhaps thousands of people were killed in cold blood when the troops fired into crowds and army tanks ran over people” (Wong 2). Ranging from university students to faculty workers to intellectuals, this protest was executed mainly to promote freedom of speech and press, economic growth, help in education funds, and most importantly, a change towards democracy. After the tragic incident, societies began to question China’s motives and actions.
The fight for democracy created great tensions between the people and the government. “…20 years later, China’s Communist Party remains solidly in power. It still suppresses dissent. In China, capitalism is championed, but democracy is still verboten” (Meredith 2). Essentially this source discussed how even though the fight for democracy was lost by the people; China gained a severe change in the capitalistic features. For example, China’s Five-Year Plan was introduced before the Tiananmen Square incident, but the effect of the incident caused this plan to move towards a more industrialized turn.
Eventually, China became known more for their capitalistic features than their infamous communist cover. The world-known Tank Man is said to have been one of the most influential figure of his time. “It all started with a man in a white shirt who walked into the street and raised his right hand no higher than a New Yorker hailing a taxi…” quoted James Barron, a writer for The New York Times (This newspaper article was published the day after the incident June 5, 1989). The descriptions of the tank man possibly lead to many historical events in the future.
This demonstrated how if one lone individual has the courage to stand up against such a powerful government, why couldn’t a group do the same with their corrupt government in their countries? Over to the West of Asia, East and West Germany were suffering similar problems in that the two want to, once again, become one country. Shortly afterwards, the demolishing of the Berlin Wall began after protest which was deducted by the Tank Man’s courageous actions. Nearby locations such as Macau and Hong Kong have hundreds of thousands of protesters which disfavored the actions of the Communist Chinese Government.
In Hong Kong, over 200,000 citizens protested in support of the brutal massacre. Because Hong Kong was still under British rule in 1989, they were afraid to be under Communist China’s rule, they were still scarred with fear in case of reunification with China. As a result of the terror, many Hong Kong citizens fled to other countries in hope to escape the confusion (On a side note, though Hong Kong is geographically in China, under British rule, the city is democratic). Though the international political effects of the massacre were definitely prominent amongst the countries, we must not forget the economic results of this event.
Contrastingly, where democracy isn’t as prominent as in the United States, the Chinese weren’t as avid in protesting as the Hong Kong citizens were, but they viewed this incident as though it was a normal rebellion. In other words, the Chinese North Americans knew there would be a big turnout of events that will occur as a result of this protest. Other country’s views on China were significant to the economy in the foreign trading aspects because after this massacre, many of them feared that China would no longer be loyal to them. Major companies and corporations dislike doing business with suffering countries.
At the time, China’s government and economy, have been slowly rising to become the leading nation, but due to this event, their growth was temporarily halted. Many worldwide companies were indecisive to whether or not they should help out their ally by encouraging trade once again which sparked China’s drive towards their capitalistic beginnings. After this event and ever since Google has been around, many citizens in China attempted to learn more about the Tiananmen Square Massacre, but to their disappointment, this searching capability is blocked “due to relevant laws, regulations and policies” (Thompson 8).
Terms such “never forget” or “candle” have been censored in Chinese search engines in hope for the government to cover up their tracks. This action was very significant because although it helped China conceal information about the event so citizens wouldn’t dare question or further seek knowledge regarding the topic, other countries began hypothesizing the real reason behind China’s motives. C. Evaluation of sources Jan Wong is a Chinese-Canadian who vacationed to Beijing. This interview was about a first-hand account of the witness of this event live from her balcony in a nearby hotel room.
The vivid descriptions of her details make her account seem reliable enough to the point where an individual can distinguish her knowledge on this topic. Few people may question whether this is source is credible or not because she is part Chinese. Thompson carefully wrote his sources to depict the mysteries and after effects of China’s actions. Having visited the Tiananmen Square several times, Thompson writes in his research paper the great, vivid event that occurred that one night in 1989. He uses much data to support his claims between China and other foreign countries.
Thompson sees the Tiananmen Square a burden to China’s progress in capitalistic development along with the rest of the world. China is known greatly for its censorship and how greatly they can cover up reasons that could probably allow other countries to question their government. Gregory Clark, a former Australian diplomat who focuses on Chinese affairs, wrote an article in Japan Times stating that the Western culture was spreading a “myth” about the Tiananmen Square Massacre. This shows the extent of China’s power to censor what they feel should be heard and what should not.
In order to protect the face of their government, even though there are eye-witness accounts of their wide-spread murder, the Chinese government had to take major precautions to ensure a sustainable relationship, economically and politically, with other international countries. D. Analysis In Jan Wong’s interview of her account in China during the Tiananmen Square Massacre, she mentions, “I wasn’t the only person watching; everybody on the street was watching” (Wong 3). Because Jan Wong was present during the time of the event, she witnessed the actions of the tank man.
If any regular civilian were to see this event and be in complete awe of the actions of this courageous twenty year-old man, it reveals how there can be many more people in this world who might see the common man in a white T-shirt with plastic shopping bags. There are billions of people in this world and those who know about Tiananmen Square, and the millions that do, probably heard about the tank man. Though the tank man still remains anonymous after 23 years, this individual managed to influence the whole world not just on a social level, but also on an economic and political core.
E. Conclusion This protest is considered one of the top 10 most influential protests along with the Boston Tea Party, Purple rain protests, and the Civil Rights March. The Tiananmen Square protest was originally meant to spread democracy in China and abandon communism. Through the years of peaceful protests, many lives were lost. After the Tiananmen Square incident though, countries from around the world were influenced by figures such as the Tank Man who had enough courage to step in front of the corrupted government in hope for it to change for the better.
In addition to its efforts and outcomes, China’s capitalism is now becoming one of the leading nations in the world. The influence of Tank Man spread to East and West Germany which helped the taking down of the Berlin wall and once again uniting the two into one. F. Sources cited Conachy, James. “Ten Years since the Tiananmen Square Massacre. ” World Socialist Web Site. N. p. , n. d. Web. 20 Nov. 2012. . This source was a political lesson for the knowledge of the working class.
The website is rather significant to this Internal assessment because it discusses about parts of the aftermath, and more importantly its effect on capitalism. This particular source is a very straightforward and unbiased work. The majority of this website was dedicated solely on the history. Ranging from important political figures such as Deng Xiao Ping to Liu Bin Yan, this website helped narrow down descriptions of many political movements. Meredith, Robyn. “Where Capitalism Won, But Not Democracy. ” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, n. d. Web. 20 Nov. 2012. .
This source focuses mainly on the detailed history of Tiananmen Massacre. The significance of this article to the essay is the background information and just the overall gist and feels of this head-turning movement. After the description of the event, Meredith then discusses the major impacts the massacre had on the fall of the Berlin Wall. Tiananmen massacre is not only large event hoping to draw attention from the Chinese government, but little do they know that this movement called for revolutions all over the world. Overall, the source was significant because of its focus on detail of the actual event.
Thompson, Michael J. “The Price of Heavenly Peace: Tiananmen Square 15 Years Later. “Michael J. Thompson. N. p. , n. d. Web. 20 Nov. 2012. . Similar to the article with “10 years”, the 15 year goes into more detail and begins to discuss more about the outside influence of different countries such as Russia. Also, Thompsons describes the influences on different beliefs all around the world. The article also talks about China’s original need for change which was the want for democratic power, but instead, they ended up as a capitalist country.
This article helps provide the necessary information for the building blocks of repetitive reform. Wong, Jan. “Interview: Jan Wong [Witness of the Tank Man]. ” PBS. PBS, 11 Apr. 2006. Web. 14 Nov. 2012. The interview with Jan Wong adds a whole new perspective to my knowledge on this topic. Her account may by the closest account because she was witnessing the event as it went on. As a third generation Chinese-Canadian, Wong recounts vivid details of her being in her hotel room nearby watching this protest take place. She describes in detail the horrific scene and the ominous area. AFTERMATH AND LEGACY OF TIANANMEN SQUARE. ” Facts and Details. N. p. , n. d. Web. 20 Nov. 2012. . This website is dedicated to the more recent news even those from post-2000. A wide-variety of articles should be used because it allows the readers to see the events from different aspects of time periods. A perspective from the 1990s as opposed to the one in 2005. This article focuses mainly on the point of views from this time period. For example, now that we’ve evolved more from the time of the event, we see the massacre in a whole new way.