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Chinese Politics - Essay Example

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The author focuses on the 1989 protests in Tiananmen Square which presented a great challenge to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), but the government used every possible measure (killing, arrests, a ban of the press) to crush the uprising protest enabling it to remain in power
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Chinese Politics
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Chinese politics
The 1989 protests in Tiananmen Square presented a great challenge to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) which is still in power even to date. These protests had one common goal which was, ‘a call for democracy’. Many students had gathered peacefully to protest against the reforms which had taken place. They also wanted to protest against the corruption that was evident within the government. The essence of the protest was not to follow a democracy style like the US. Instead, they wanted wealth and prosperity of the nation like their western counterparts; that is, they had no intentions of overthrowing the PRC.1 These students were against the failure of the state to mourn Hu Yaobang who was the CPC General Secretary and a symbol of liberal reform and a clean government to them. They were joined by allegiances that were against the communist and in need of economic reform and liberalization.
The response of the PRC to the peaceful protests was repressive in nature and an absolute violation of human rights.2 The government had warned the protesters of drastic actions to control the ‘social chaos’. True to their words, army action was taken against the protesters and they were shot dead.3 Given that the troops sent by the PRC were unable to enforce martial law in the face of 100,000 protesters who had protested for seven weeks, they resorted to open fire indiscriminately on the protesters and this saw thousands of protesters killed thus making it the major turning point of the history of China. Apart from the killings, many other protesters together with their supporters were arrested and foreign press banned from the country thus leaving the coverage of events to be controlled strictly by the PRC press. The government used every possible measure to crush the uprising thus enabling it to remain in power.
Russia and Eastern Europe faced economic crisis as their economy performed poorly hence attracting public intervention. This led to protests against the government which were successful as it resulted to the displacement of the communist government. China on the other hand did not fall even though it faced similar challenges like the Soviet Union and the Eastern Europe since it successfully suppressed every uprising. In addition, the economic performance of China was not declining given that years later under the same party the country has made tremendous progress economically.4 The definition of a civil society comprises of self organization which is attained through various voluntary and non voluntary organizations.5 The existence of public sphere is also necessary so that people can speak out their opinion for the general benefit. All these were however absent in the case of China. Here, a number of people did come forward to protest against the government but that number was not large enough to bring about the required change.6
The policies of the PRC had been to crush any sort of criticisms and that had also prevailed. The lack of a mass uprising compared to the population of China and the excellent performance of the economy can be attributed to its success to date. Lastly, one can say China had shown a tremendous progress since it opted its open door policy. The party had been quick to assess the need of the people and bring about the changes accordingly. Though any form of criticism was termed as anti nationalist, the party never entertained any views of the common people. The policies of the government are regressive and not much on democratic lines but to bring it to an end requires a revolution in a large scale.
BBC News. 1989: Massacre in Tiananmen Square, 1989.Available at: HYPERLINK " m" tm (accessed on September 19, 2011).
Brown, Anne. Human rights and the borders of suffering: the promotion of human rights in international politics. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002.
Chapman, Steve. China after Tiananmen, reason, 2009. Available at: HYPERLINK " tiananmen" (accessed on September 19, 2011)
Han, M. and Han, S. Cries for democracy: writings and speeches from 1989 Chinese democratic movement. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1990.
Lusted, Marcia. Tiananmen Square Protests, Minnesota: ABDO Publishers, 2010.
Tong, Yanqi. “State, Society, and Political- change in China and Hungary.” The Journal of Comparative Politics, 26 no. 3 (1994): 333-353 Read More
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