Tanks in Tiananmen Square

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an unknown man attempted to block a line of 18 Chinese tanks - as the tanks swerved, he moved to block them. He then climbed up onto the tank and addressed the soldiers - "Why are you here? Our city is in chaos because of you."

On June 1 the government cut off access to foreign journalists.

On June 2, 6 convoys of tanks and soldiers moved toward central Beijing. All were stopped by citizens, often physically blocking the path of the tanks.

On June 3, soldiers were ordered to clear Tiananmen Square at all costs. Tanks and armored personnel carriers moved toward the square. Demonstrators were attacked with tear gas, rubber bullets and electric truncheons. Soldiers opened fire on those attempting to block their progress. By midnight the tanks had reached the square.


Part of the Tiananmen Square Exhibit