Friday, June 5, 2009

A Word on Tienanmen Square

Yesterday was the 20 year anniversary of the massacre that occurred in Beijing at Tienanmen Square. This is an extremely important historical event. Everyone needs to see video of the famous and staggeringly brave "tank man". He's a symbol for all free loving people standing against tyranny.

I work with some Chinese people. We discuss these incidents. They point out that it is impossible to view any images related to the Tienanmen Square incident in China. Most of the youth are unaware of what happened, though the adult population is well aware of it.

Many Americans express shock that there could be such repression of historical fact. Hillary Clinton has urged China to face their true history rather than hiding it. This has irritated the Chinese government, but of course Hillary is in the right.

But I can imagine what is going through the minds of Chinese officials. I can imagine a few questions they might ask of the American people. Maybe questions like the following:

Have you ever heard of Laos? Do you know anything about the amount of bombs the U.S. government dropped on this country? Did you know there was another 9/11 prior to 2001? You know that the Iranians took American hostages in 1979. Do you know why? Have you ever heard of Iran Air flight 655 and Bush Sr.'s reaction as Vice President? Ever heard of Nurse Nayirah, or the Gulf of Tonkin?

When you hear people express shock at the repression in China, ask them if they've heard of any of these incidents? This isn't to say that there is no difference between China and the United States. At least in the United States we are free to talk about anything and criticize our government. But as far as our ignorance of our government's mistakes, are we really so different?

4 comments:

Tejaswy said...

You seem to have for got this
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http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2003-12-11-laos-bombs_x.htm
It didn't take long to find one. Savannakhet is the most heavily bombed province in one of the most heavily bombed countries in the history of warfare. About 150 yards into the jungle, the boys spotted an unexploded bomblet from a U.S. cluster bomb dropped here during the Vietnam War.
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You cannot compare Genocide with war bombings...can you ?

Jon said...

Not sure what you mean when you say I forgot about the story of unexploded bombs in Laos.

No, you can't compare genocide with war bombings. Are you saying I did that?

Teja said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tejaswy said...

No not exactly....

Well you were kind if implying that or should i say comparing Tienanmen square with US war bombings in Laos.