Touching the tiger's buttocks
Yet another day to remember, full of bloodshed and anguish. The 15th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre in China. There are reports of more than a dozen arrests in the square today, presumably of protesters commemorating the events of 1989.
The Guardian asks today
If the Beijing Massacre is really so irrelevant today, why have the authorities reacted so nervously to the June 3/4 anniversary? Although many sensitive social issues can now be debated in the Chinese media, to ask about Tiananmen Square is still unacceptably — in the old Maoist idiom — to "touch the tiger's buttocks". Those who dare to do so in the capital are packed off to the provinces or put in detention.
Nor should we forget the more than 50 people according to Amnesty — there are many others unknown to us — still in jail for alleged crimes in 1989: one case merely consisted of throwing eggs at Mao's portrait in the square. Such repression only confirms the message sent out from under house arrest by Ding Zilin, who lost her son that night and heads the Tiananmen Mothers group, that "the system we live in is full of barbarism, inhumanity and hypocrisy".
Speaking of people we shouldn't forget, how about the hundreds — if not thousands — who died fifteen years ago and especially those left behind who loved them.
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