China, Beijing, John Pomfret discussed on FP's The Editor's Roundtable (The E.R.)

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From foreign policy. I'm Sarah wild Mun. And this is first person this week an inside account of the TNN square massacre. Thirty years ago this month student protests rutted in Beijing posing one of the most significant threats to the rule of the communist party in China's history. The demonstrations lasted two months and grew to include a range of citizens all demanding reforms in the country. For the first time in huge numbers. The ordinary men and women of Beijing the old and the young professors and taxi drivers have joined the student protests lending, their support to what is now taking on all the appearances of a peaceful popular uprising against the oppressiveness of communist rule campaign for China's renewal in an atmosphere of freedom and democracy, the focal point of the protest was Tiananmen Square. The heart of Beijing within a few weeks the government declared martial law and then in early June the world watched in horror as Chinese military tanks rolled in the streets of Beijing on the way to Chinaman's square. They fired indiscriminately at protesters there were reports of tanks rolling over students. The noise have gun five rose from all over the center of Peking, it was unremitting. On the streets leading down to the main road to ten on men square furious. People stood in disbelief at the glow in the sky listening to the sound of shots in the midst of all this chaos was John Pomfret who covered China for these Tosi press of the time hit an advantage over his fellow foreign correspondents. He had studied in China spoke Mandarin fluently and had many contacts in student movement. He joins us today. John, thanks for joining us. Thanks for having me. So we're coming on the thirtieth anniversary of the TNN square massacre. But I want to actually start with how you came to China in the first place. How did you come? So I went to college wanting to study neuro physiology. Okay..

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