Massacre in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square (CBC June 4, 1989)

The images are shocking. Armoured tanks plow into crowds of people, flames from burning buses light up the night sky, and bleeding bodies are rushed to hospital. For weeks student protesters in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square have been demonstrating for political reform of China’s communist government. A declaration of martial law has failed to quell the protests, and now the government has called in the military. Death is all around as the CBC’s Tom Kennedy reports.

The massacre begins shortly after midnight as tanks and armoured personnel carriers roll through the streets, crushing hastily erected barricades and into Tiananmen Square. After launching tear gas and using loudspeakers to order people to leave, the army starts shooting. But the protesters fight back, beating army officers or simply standing their ground. They form human walls around foreign press to make sure the story gets out to the world.


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