At the Forefront of Anti-totalitarianism:From the 1989 Democracy Movement to the Anti-Extradition Movement
- 引言 Introduction
- 時局背景 Background
- 時間線 Timeline
- 人物介紹 Survivors and the Dead
- 中共官方對「六四」的定性 The CCP’s Official Statement on June 4th
- 八九民運文宣物品 Publicity Materials
- 香港人在八九民運的參與 Hong Kong People's Involvement
- 八九民運與「反送中」運動模式 Modes of the Movements
- 參與者故事 Participants’ Stories
- 極權統治者會「進化」？Do Totalitarian Rulers “Evolve”?
- 結語 Conclusion
1989 and 2019... time interchanged and space was displaced. The bloody crackdown on Tiananmen Square in Beijing has changed to the tear-gassed streets and campuses of Hong Kong.
June 4th of 1989 politically awakened the Hong Kong society, but yet, it is still an unhealed wound and an unending fight. If we say that the occupation scene of the Umbrella Movement in 2014 resembled the tent-filled Tiananmen Square in 1989; the Anti-Extradition Movement in 2019 with abusive shooting of tear-gas and brutal beating up of young people made Hong Kong people feel it close to the June 4th Massacre, or even the “Hong Kong version of June 4th ” and “June 4th 2.0”.
Over 30 years ago, Hong Kong was in the transitional period before the return to China in 1997. The people of Hong Kong fully supported the students in Beijing and there was for the first time a million people demonstrated on the streets. Since 1989, Hong Kong people have not forgotten the June 4th Massacre, and they are still fighting. This is not only unthinkable under the dictatorship of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), but also rare in the world. It also marks the uniqueness of this city. In 2019, during the Anti-Extradition Movement, marches of over one million people were staged again and again. Countless Hong Kong people took to the streets to confront the dictatorship, and they did not flinch in the face of the June 4th style of repression. The democratic movement history of Hong Kong has added a heavy and brand new stroke.
From June 4th to Anti-Extradition, the CCP’s devil’s claws are getting longer and closer. Hong Kong is in the forefront against totalitarianism, and Hong Kong people are going to continue to protect the city’s core value.
The 1989 Democracy Movement took place in the relatively free and loose 1980s, while the Anti-Extradition Movement has occurred in the context of Communist Party attempts to exert greater control over Hong Kong. The 30 years in between bear witness to democratic regression and people’s persistent fight against authoritarianism.
八九民運 1989 Democracy Movement
The CCP adopted “Reform and Opening” policies in 1978. The country experienced a period of economic development, political easing, ideological emancipation and a splendid culture.
Ten years of economic reforms reached a bottleneck and political system reforms failed to cooperate. The dual-track price system has led to official profiteering. Corruption intensified, prices skyrocketed, and public grievances increased.
Political reform became a pressing issue both within and outside the Party. The April 5th Tiananmen Incident in 1976, the Xidan Democracy Wall and the people’s publication movement in the late 1970s, the college students and intellectuals running for deputies to local people's congresses, and the 1986 student demonstrations as well as the petitions in early 1989 were seen as a prelude to the 1989 Democracy Movement.
Internationally, socialist countries frequently experienced political turmoil in the 80s. On June 4th, the Polish Solidarity Union won elections in Poland, leading to the collapse of Polish Communist regime. A few months later, other socialist countries in Eastern Europe have evolved peacefully, and the Soviet Union ended in dissolution two years later.
「反送中」運動The Anti-Extradition Movement
Xi Jinping, the General Secretary of CCP has stepped up his autocratic governance since he came to power in 2012. The Chief Executive of Hong Kong just follows the orders of the Central Government obediently, and the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government has increasingly intervened in Hong Kong affairs. During the 5 years from the Umbrella Movement in 2014 to the current Anti-Extradition Movement, a lot has happened, including: the appointment of Vice President of HKU; the missing Causeway Bay Bookstore owner and staff Incident; the Mong Kok disturbances; the HK Legislative Council sworn affair leading to the NPC Standing Committee’s interpretation of the Laws to disqualifying 6 Legislative Council Members from office; the Joint checkpoint arrangement; and the trial and sentencing of the 9 “Occupy Central Movement” activists. All the above instances caused the ”one country, two systems” and Hong Kong’s core values being hollowed out. If Umbrella Movement is to fight for the universal suffrage which is yet to come, the Anti-Extradition Movement is for Hong Kong people to defend stubbornly our original freedom and rule of law.
The Umbrella Movement has inspired many to organize politically and to go grassroots providing a foundation for the eventual Anti-Extradition Movement.
The Anti-Extradition protests broke out during the Sino-US trade war. US President Trump warned that “Tiananmen-style repression” would jeopardize the trade negotiations. He signed the “Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act” which somewhat constrained the CCP’s handling of the Anti-Extradition Movement.
Hu Yaobang, former General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC), passed away, and mourning banners appeared in Beijing colleges and universities.
The students shouted the slogan “anti-corruption, anti-official profiteering” and made 7 demands including democratic reform.
About 2,000 students sat in front of Xinhua Gate in Zhongnanhai and requested to talk to the leaders.
Public security and armed police blocked the intersection near Zhongnanhai, and clashed with students.
100,000 students gathered in the Square to request participation in the official memorial service. 3 student representatives kneeled to submit a petition letter.
People's Daily published an editorial entitled
“We must take a Clear-cut Stand against Disturbances” which defined the student movement a“disturbances.”
This intensified the conflict between students and the government.
On the 70th anniversary of the “May 4th Movement”, more than 100,000 students marched across the country. The goals of the student movement gradually become press freedom, an end to corruption and continuing economic reforms.
Students launched a hunger strike petition. Number of participants reached 3,000, and students from all over the country expressed their support.
Zhao Ziyang met with Gorbachev and revealed that big decisions were made by Deng Xiaoping at the helm.
The government ignored the students’ demands. Some students escalated the hunger strike to stopping water intake as well. More than 300 students fainted.
Zhao Ziyang went to the Square early morning to express regards to the students and apologize with tears, “Students, we have come late. Sorry to you.”
The students announced stopping the hunger strike and changed it into a sit-in.
Li Peng issued a martial law order, and some areas in Beijing implemented martial law and news blockades. The military entered the capital and was repeatedly intercepted. The students announced that the 200,000 people in the Square went on hunger strike.
The martial law triggered large-scale overseas protests, and for the first time in Hong Kong history a million people marched in the streets.
The Hong Kong entertainment industry held the Concert for Democracy in China and raised $12 million to support the democratic movement.
In response to the “Global Chinese Democracy March” called by Beijing students, 1.5 million people in Hong Kong took to the streets.
The statue of Goddess of Democracy was erected in Tiananmen Square, and a government statement severely criticized this act.
The army secretly entered the city in batches. The tanks and armored vehicles forced their way into Tiananmen Square, and killed people on the way, resulting in countless deaths and injuries.
The army entered Tiananmen Square in the early morning to clear the scene, and continued to shoot at the public in the morning and afternoon. The number of casualties could hardly be estimated. 200,000 people in Hong Kong, dressed in black, took part in a sit-in protest to mourn the deaths in Beijing. Similar protests and ceremonies took place all over the world.
A young man (Wang Weilin) blocked the advance of a column of tanks on Chang’an Avenue. He even climbed up onto the turret of the lead tank but was finally pulled aside by a group of bystanders.
An order was issued for the arrest of 21 students of the Beijing Students' Autonomous Federation identified as movement leaders. The most wanted list included Wang Dan, Wuer Kaixi, Liu Gang and Chai Ling. “Operation Yellow Bird” commenced in late June. The operation continued right up until before the handover of Hong Kong in 1997. Hundreds of dissidents were rescued.
Suppression still continuing
Hong Kong citizen Poon Hiu-wing was murdered by her boyfriend Chan Tong-kai in Taiwan in Feb 2018. The Hong Kong government Security Bureau submits a proposal to the Legislative Council to amend the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance and Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Ordinance.
The Fugitive Offenders & Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters Legislation (Amendment) Bill 2019, or extradition bill, is tabled at the Legislative Council for the first reading.
1.03 million people take to the streets to demand the withdrawal of the draconian extradition bill. Solidarity protests take place around the world.
Widespread labor and student strikes occur. Protesters surround Legco and block roads to prevent the second reading of the bill scheduled to begin in the morning of this day. The police disperse protesters by force, committing many abuses in the process.
After the June 12th suppression, five protest demands emerge.
Carrie Lam announces the suspension of the bill but refuses
to withdraw it and expresses support for the police's characterization of the June 12th protest as a “riot”.
In the evening, Marco Leung Ling-kit, who subsequently becomes known as “Raincoat Man”, falls to his death near government headquarters, leaving behind a banner reading “No Extradition To China”.
2 million protesters march in the largest protest in Hong Kong history, which becomes known as the “2 million and 1 person” protest in honour of Marco Leung.
550,000 people take part in the annual July 1st march. Some protesters occupy the Legco chamber and make a “Declaration of Hong Kong Protesters”.
Subsequently, the demand for Carrie Lam to step down is replaced by a demand for universal suffrage in elections for both the Chief Executive and Legco.
The police brutality issue is more deeply concerned.
The “White-shirt Mob” attack citizens indiscriminately in Yuen Long. Police fail to respond to thousands of emergency calls for over a half hour, triggering public outrage and suspicion of police and triad collusion.
A female first-aider is shot in the right eye by a police bean bag round in Tsim Sha Tsui. Tear gas is fired into Kwai Fong and Taikoo MTR stations.
Riot Police and “Raptors” Squad attack citizens indiscriminately in Prince Edward MTR station. Because police largely bar the press from the scene, persistent suspicions arise that deaths occurred.
For Mid-Autumn Festival, protesters form human chains across the city and sing the new anthem, “Glory to Hong Kong” . A banner calling for “dual universal suffrage” is hung from iconic Lion Rock.
On the day of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, 100,000 to 150,000 people participate in a “national day of mourning” march.
Fierce clashes between police and protesters break out across Hong Kong. A secondary student is shot in the chest at close range by a police officer in Tsuen Wan.
Invoking the Emergency Regulations Ordinance, the government enacts the “Prohibition on Face Covering Regulation”, banning face masks at public gatherings.
Hong Kong people react immediately with protests, and the slogan, “Hong Kong people, add oil!” is changed to “Hong Kong people, resist!”
University student Alex Chow Tsz-lok falls in the Sheung Tak car park, Tseung Kwan O where a police clearance operation is taking place. Suspicion falls on police, who deny any involvement. Chow dies on Nov 8th .
The protest slogan, “Hong Kong people, resist!” changes to “Hong Kong people, take revenge!”
Netizens initiates the “Operation Dawn” which brings transport to a standstill in many parts of the city. A police officer shoots a 21-year-old youngster at point blank range in Sai Wan Ho.
Riot police enter university campuses. Intense clashes between police and protesters occur during the police siege of Chinese University.
Police lay siege to Polytechnic University, cordoning it off and allowing no one to leave except upon arrest.
The last night of 2019 is marked by tear gas. Protesters form a human chain and shout, “Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times” as the new year begins.
1.03 million people participate in the New Year's Day march. Police terminate the march and launched
a massive round of arrest.
The Fight goes on
人物介紹 Survivors and the Dead
吳向東 Wu Xiangdong
1968.8.13 - 1989.6.4
Worker and evening university student, fatally shot dead near the Muxidi bridge at the age of 21.
八九民運期間事跡介紹 Deeds during the 1989 democracy movement
Wu Xiangdong wrote big-character posters to factory co-workers in support of students. He told his younger brother Weidong that when the posters were put up at the factory entrance, the off-duty workers brought the factory flag to Tiananmen Square to support the university students.
Under Beijing martial law, Wu Xiangdong wrote his will (Exhibit 2) on May 21st, 1989. On the testament, he mentioned “I’ve made preparations to stay with the students. I will not hesitate to die—for democracy and freedom.”
Wu Xiangdong often assisted in maintaining order and protected the students at the square after work. To honour him, many people signed his clothes, hats and shoes.
Wu Xiangdong’s parents found his body at Fuxing Hospital.
In the shadow of white terror and with help from various parties, a fake death certificate was issued and his family quietly had the body cremated.
Wound: The bullet entered the left collarbone near the neck and came out the left side of the back near the spine. The wound diameter was about 1 cm at the front and 2-3 cm at the back, with burn marks around the wound. He was killed by an expanding (dumdum) bullet.
父母眼中的吳向東 Wu Xiangdong in the Eyes of his parents
He was passionate and had a wide range of interests, like stamp collecting, Go games, swimming, music, Chinese painting, calligraphy and seal cutting. He treated people sincerely and eagerly help others, so he had many close friends.
Wu Xuehan, father (Died of depression and cancer in 1995)
My son wrote a will at Tiananmen Square in May, he was true to his promise by giving his life.
Xu Jue, mother (Died of liver cancer on April 24th, 2017)
1. 大字報（複製本）Big-character poster (replica)
The poster expresses Wu Xiangdong’s solidarity with Beijing student movement.
The photo shows Wu Xiangdong’s factory co-workers demonstrating (date unknown).
2. 吳向東遺書（複印本）Wu Xiangdong's suicide note (replica)
Excerpt: “I am prepared to be with the students, even at the expense of my life. This is for democracy and freedom.”
3. 學習筆記 Study notes
Wu Xiangdong was diligent in his studies. He was admitted to Beijing Electronic instrument Industry Workers College (Industrial Enterprise Management) and studied part-time.
4. 司法工作手冊 Judicial Work Manual
Wu Xiangdong studied general principles of law.
5. 獻血證 Blood donation certificate
Wu Xiangdong donated blood before the outbreak of the 1989 Democracy Movement.
6. 初中畢業證書 Junior high school diploma
7. 海鷗牌相機 Seagull Camera
The camera included the last roll of film Wu Xiangdong shot at Tiananmen Square. Photos were developed from this roll.
8. 寫有「愛國無罪」頭帶 Headband with the words “Patriotism is not a Crime”
9. 星辰手錶 CITIZEN Watch
10. 相簿 Photo album
11. 日記本 Diary
12. 生前所用行李箱 Suitcase used by Wu Xiangdong
In 2014, one of the Wu Xiangdong’ s family members brought the suitcase full of W’ s possessions to the Alliance as historical evidence.
13-16. 畫作、繪畫顏料和顏料盤 Paintings, paints and palette
Exhibits 13 to 16 are his paintings, paints and palette.
王楠 Wang Nan
1970.4.3 - 1989.6.4
High school student, fatally shot dead at the south exit of Nanchang Street on the west side of Tiananmen Square at the age of 19.
八九民運期間事跡介紹 Deeds during the 1989 Democracy Movement
Wang Nan was very concerned about the student movement and took photos at Tiananmen Square around noon every day. He felt that if no one recorded the precious historical moment through photographs, it would be hard to know the truth.
On May 17th, 1989, he and a classmate organized a demonstration for classmates to support the college students on hunger strike.
On the night of June 3rd, 1989, with the wish to “faithfully record the historical footage”, he left home with his camera and red motorcycle helmet and rode straight to Tiananmen Square.
The bullet entered Wang’s upper left forehead and came out through the left ear, leaving a hole at the back of the motorcycle helmet (Exhibit 1).
According to the investigation by Wang Nan's family, after Wang Nan was shot, the rescue team asked to send him to the hospital for emergency treatment. The martial law troops refused and only allowed bandaging on the spot.
Wang Nan's relatives and friends searched 24 hospitals but could not find his body. On June 14th, the school informed the family that there was an unknown corpse that resembled Wang Nan. The family investigation later revealed that the martial law troops obliterated the traces of crimes they committed by burying Wang Nan and two other bodies in the lawn in front of the 28 Middle School (later Chang'an Middle School and then Beijing 161 Middle School) on the west side of Tiananmen. Due to the odor from the bodies, the school intervened. The bodies were excavated. As Wang Nan had just finished his military training, his body was mistaken for a soldier’s due to the clothes he wore and was sent to the mortuary of Huguosi Traditional Chinese Medicine Hospital for storage, where his family eventually found his body.
In Deng Xiaoping’s speech on June 9th, the student movement was labelled as “counter-revolutionary riot”. The crematorium received an order that the deceased had to be screened before cremation. Wang Nan’s family negotiated persistently. Eventually, as Wang’s father Wang Fandi (died of heart failure on December 8th, 2017) was a member of the Jiusan Society, the cremation was finally approved by the Beijing United Front Work Department through the municipal committee. The cause of death on the cremation certificate was “died outside”, as the government tried to cover up the truth. (Exhibit 3)
Wang Nan in the eyes of his mother, Zhang Xianling
He was lively, enthusiastic, and passionate about public welfare and helping others. Shortly before his death, Teacher Ma of Yuetan Middle School told me that Wang Nan’s character was one of the best in his class. He respected teachers and cared for his classmates. He was a honest and lovely child.
Zhang Xianling, mother
1. 頭盔 Helmet
Helmet with bullet holes.
2. 破碎眼鏡 Broken glasses
The glasses with the left lens smashed that he wore when killed.
3. 火化證明 Cremation certificate
Issued by Xicheng Branch of Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau on June 20th, 1989.
Cause of death: “died outside”.
4. 死亡報告單 Death report
Issued by Beijing Municipal Health Bureau and Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau on June 26th, 1989. It notes “gunshot died outside” but leaves the spaces for cause and location of death blank.
5. 橫額 Banner
Wang Nan and his classmates took this banner with the words, “People Support You”, to Tiananmen Square to show their support for university students.
6. 抗議布條 Protest cloth strips
Protest strips with words such as “People! Backing!” and “Legal System, Democracy”.
張健 Zhang Jian
1970.11.11 - 2019.4.17
Matriculated student of the Beijing Institute of Physical Education and captain of student pickets, shot three times in Tiananmen Square opposite the Tiananmen east-viewing platform. One of the bullets remained in the body for 19 years. In 2008, surgery was performed to remove the bullet in France.
受傷情況及遭遇 Injuries and encounters
One bullet hit the upper third of the humeral shaft of the right leg causing comminuted fracture.
He was brought to Beijing Tongren Hospital, where he came to the attention of the authorities. After interrogation, he was allowed to stay in hospital for treatment.
After a 90-day hospital stay, he was discharged and then lived undercover for 12 years in China.
In 2001, he was exposed due to his work defending the rights of taxi drivers. He subsequently went into exile in France, joining the overseas democracy movement, and became a Christian preacher.
On April 15th, 2019, he lapsed into a coma due to hepatic ascites on a plane to Paris, France and was sent to hospital in Germany for treatment. He died on April 17th, at the age of 48.
張健的說話 Zhang Jian’s quote
The reason I persist is that I know so many June 4th brothers and sisters sacrificed their lives. I know that the truth has not been revealed. So I want to bear witness to June 4th.
The model shows the position of bullet in Zhang's body. (The bullet is a replica.)
- 子彈未取出前，張健的右大腿根處皮膚凸起。Zhang’ s skin at the base of his right thigh before the bullet was removed.
- 於同仁醫院留醫，右腿被吊起情景。He was hospitalized in Tongren Hospital and his right leg was elevated.
- 頭綁抗議布條，在廣場擔任糾察隊隊長。He tied a protest band around his head and served as captain of the Tiananmen Square pickets.
李旺陽 Li Wangyang
1950.11.12 - 2012.6.6
Labor movement leader in Hunan, imprisoned for a total of 22 years of his life, one of the longest-serving June 4th political prisoners.
八九民運期間事跡及遭遇 Deeds and encounters during the 1989 Democracy Movement
During the 1989 Democracy Movement, Li served as the chairman of Shaoyang City Workers’ Union in Hunan and initiated worker demonstrations to support Beijing students.
After the June 4th Massacre, he was sentenced to 13 years in prison for “Counter-revolutionary propaganda and incitement” and was tortured in prison.
As he insisted on fighting for democracy and seeking justice for torture suffered, he was sentenced to 10 years in prison in 2001 for “inciting subversion of state power”. When he was released from prison in 2011, he was deaf and blind and suffered many maladies due to prison abuse.
On the eve of June 4th in 2012, Li Wangyang was interviewed by Hong Kong media. After the interview was aired, he was found hanging from window in hospital on June 6th. His feet were on the ground. The cause of death was suspicious.
Li’s sister, Li Wangling, was informed by the authorities that her brother had “committed suicide”. On June 9th, without the signature or consent of the family, the body was hurriedly cremated, a suspected act of obliterating evidence.
李旺陽的說話 Li Wangyang’ s quote
For the country to become a democratic society soon, and for the realization of a multi-party system in China soon, even if I am beheaded, I’ll never regret!
——李旺陽 Li Wangyang
1.李旺陽生前所穿衣服 Cloths worn by Li Wangyang.
李旺陽被囚禁的「棺材倉」圖示 Diagram of the “coffin cell” where Li was imprisoned
長2米 闊1米 高1.6米 Length 2m Width 1m Height 1.6m
- 被囚21年的李旺陽，曾被困「棺材倉」逾20次，每次囚禁1至3個月。 Li Wangyang was imprisoned for 21 years. He was confined to a “coffin cell” more than 20 times, each time for one to three months.
- 李身高1.8米，在倉內不能站直，只能坐或臥在石屎地上 Li, 1.8m tall, could not stand upright in the cell, only sit or lie on the concrete floor.
- 倉內無床或窗，亦無燈，完全漆黑 There was no bed, window or lamp in the cell. The cell was completely dark.
- 雙重鐵閘，閘上有一個小圓洞供送飯用，僅夠一碗飯通過 Meals were delivered through a small round hole only large enough for a single bowl.
- 地上有洞收集排泄物，倉內惡臭難當，有大量蒼蠅、蚊、虱子等昆蟲 The toilet was a hole in the floor. The cell smelled foul and was full of flies, mosquitoes, lice and other insects.
Source: Mingpao Daily News, June 13th, 2012, A01
中共官方對「六四」的定性 The CCP’s Official Statement on June 4th
On June 9th, 1989, Deng Xiaoping, the chairman of the Central Military Commission, met with martial law troops and labelled the democracy demonstrations as“counter-revolutionary riot”. He praised the army for quelling it.
Later on, the central government adopted a uniform phrase, referring to the demonstrations as “political turmoil between the spring and summer of 1989” or “political turmoil between the spring and summer in the late 1980s”.
The Central Institute for Party History and Literature Research published two articles, “Major Events in the 40 Years of Reform and Opening” and “Major Events of Reform and Opening” for the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China in December 2018 and September 2019 respectively. In addition to the words “political turmoil”, the phrase “counter-revolutionary riot” also reappeared.
June 4th is still taboo in mainland China.
1. 書籍 Books
Books published by the authorities on the quelling of the “riots”.
2. 筆 Pen
Includes a note with the words, “Gift from the Ministry of National Security”.
3. 「89.6.平息暴亂紀念」手錶 A watch “In memory of quelling the riots in June 1989”
A reward to “meritorious” martial law troops in the capital given by the Beijing Municipal Committee of the CCP and the Beijing Municipal People's Government. On the watch, there is a portrait of a soldier of the People's Liberation Army of the CCP and, at the bottom, the words “in memory of quelling the riots in June 1989”.
北京大學學生簽名T-Shirt Peking University T-Shirt with Student Signatures
The T-shirt is covered with signatures and the ambitions of students pursuing democracy, including those of June 4th victim, Wu Xiangdong, and exiled student leaders, Wang Dan, Wuer Kaixi, and Chai Ling. The T-shirt was donated by Choi Suk-fong, a Hong Kong journalist who conducted interviews in Beijing at the time.
吾爾開希當年在T-Shirt上簽名情景。Wuer Kaixi signing the T-Shirt.
民主歌聲獻中華 Concert for Democracy in China
1. 「民主歌聲獻中華」錄影帶 “Concert for Democracy in China” video tapes
On May 27th, 1989, the Hong Kong entertainment industry held a “Concert for Democracy in China” at Happy Valley Racecourse lasting for 12 hours. More than 200,000 people participated.
2. 「民主歌聲獻中華」留名板（複印本）“Concert for Democracy in China” nameplate (replica)
Signed by the entertainers, John Shum, Lowell Lo, Tina Liu, James Wong, Ming-man Cheung, Alfred Cheung, Dominic Chow, Eddie Ng, Kenny Wong, William So, Vicky Leung, Cally Kwong, Philip Chan, Jacky Cheung, May Lo, Louis Yuen, Andrew Lam, Violet Lam, Lei Lam, Anthony Chan, Robert Mak and others.
3. 「民主歌聲獻中華」臂章 “Concert for Democracy in China” armbands
4. 「民主歌聲獻中華——1990 美加巡迴演唱」場刊及宣傳書籤 “Concert for Democracy in China: 1990 North American Tour” programme book and promotional bookmark
In 1990, some entertainers toured overseas and called for attention to the democracy movement with their voices, including Anita Mui, Anthony Wong, Deanie Ip, Danny Summer, Ta-yu Lo and others.
「坦克人」原相海報 “Tank Man” poster developed from the original film
The poster was developed from the original film of “Tank Man” and was presented by Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International, when he visited the June 4th Museum in May 2014.
八九民運文宣物品 Publicity Materials
刊物及單張 Publications and Leaflets
Nowadays social media flourishes but such a thing did not exist in 1989. Under strict governmental control of the news media, students and others not only ran their own radio stations and broadcast vans, but also made publications and leaflets to convey messages on democracy, freedom, anti-corruption and the democracy movement. These publications included “News Herald”, “News Express”, “Hunger Strike Express”, “Democracy Forum”, leaflets for workers’ autonomous organizations, and leaflets of various universities.
《新聞導報》“News Herald” ( 複印本 replica)
Started and published by the Peking University Students Autonomous Association from the end of April 1989. Later, students from other Beijing universities also joined the editorial department. (Copies of “News Herald” are available for reading in our library.)
《新聞快訊》“News Express”( 複印本 replica)
Co-published by the Beijing press, intellectuals and people from the cultural sector from May 22nd, 1989. (Copies of “News Express” are available for reading in our library.)
八九民運原始單張資料 Original leaflets of 1989 Democracy Movement
（更多原始單張存放於本館圖書閣，歡迎閱覽。Other leaflets are available for reading in our library.）
香港人在八九民運的參與 Hong Kong People's Involvement
On May 4th, Hong Kong tertiary institutions’ students followed the example of their counterparts in Beijing and marched from their campuses to join a rally in Charter Garden. The students from Chinese University of Hong Kong, which was farthest away, departed at 8:30 am on foot and arrived 10 hours later.
During the 1989 Democracy Movement, banners and slogans were mounted at the gate of Xinhua News Agency. Would the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government allow this to happen today?
On May 20th, more than 40,000 Hong Kong people took to the streets to demonstrate under typhoon signal no. 8.
On May 21st, the editorial was submitted blank in the Wen Wei Po to protest Beijing martial law. Would pro-China newspapers dare to do this today?
On May 26th, about 200,000 young people protested in Victoria Park in the rain.
In 1989, Hong Kong people fully supported the Beijing democracy movement. Some even ventured north to assist. Hong Kong journalists bravely reported the latest news on the democracy movement from the frontlines. Many Hong Kong people were witnesses and participants in this historical event.
When the democracy movement was suppressed in mainland China, people from Hong Kong and overseas played an important role in continuing the democracy movement and standing in solidarity with those in China fighting for democracy and rights.
On the evening of June 4th every year, tens of thousands of Hong Kong people gather in Victoria Park regardless of the weather. They light candles to commemorate the souls of the deceased and call for conscience. This scene has become a sting in the eye of the CCP.
June 4th victim, Fang Zheng, whose legs were crushed by a tank, described the Victoria Park candlelight vigil as “the power to pierce the darkness and the light to illuminate conscience.”
In an era when the internet was not yet popular, Hong Kong people communicated with the Mainland by making phone call, writing letters, faxing messages, and mailing materials to break through the CCP ’s news blockade and distorted reports. Some university students set up a “break the news blockade” organization.
香港前往北京聲援的慰問團宣傳單張。Publicity leaflets of a goodwill mission from Hong Kong to Beijing.
《為自由》幾乎聚集了香港當時所有歌星合唱，包括：譚詠麟、成龍、劉德華、鄺美雲等，並曾登上香港電台「中文歌曲龍虎榜」。歌曲曾在天安門廣場播放，圖片可見北京的民主牆也張貼了歌譜。The recording of the song “For Freedom” gathered almost all the top pop singers in Hong Kong at that time, including Alan Tam, Jackie Chan, Andy Lau, and Cally Kwong, and made the “Chinese Pop Chart” of Radio Television Hong Kong. It was broadcast in Tiananmen Square. The photo depicts the musical score of the song posted on Democracy Wall in Beijing.
在「反送中」運動，香港人多次發起「三罷」。1989年「六四」屠殺後，支聯會曾發起「三罷」，並發出「十項通知」。後因6月7日凌晨滋事分子在旺角鬧事，以致集會和遊行臨時取消，「三罷」變作自願性質。不少工廠、工會和商店都響應罷工、罷市。In the Anti-Extradition Movement, Hong Kong people launched several labor and student strikes and called for boycotts of pro-CCP business activities. After the June 4th Massacre in 1989, Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China (the Alliance) initiated strikes and issued “Ten Notices”. Due to a breakout of disturbance in Mongkok caused by some troublemakers in the midnight of June 7th, the assembly and procession were cancelled and the strikes became voluntary. Many factories, trade unions and shops response to the call of strikes.
《工聯通訊》“FTU Press” (replica 複印本）
工聯會在1989年7月出版的通訊，介紹了該會在八九民運期間曾參與和舉辦的活動。1989年不少左派、親中人士和團體也支持北京學生爭取民主，譴責中共血腥鎮壓。可惜，其後他們陸續「轉軚」。Newsletter published by the Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions in July 1989 presented the activities that the Federation participated in and held during the 1989 Democracy Movement. Many leftists, pro-Chinese people and organizations also supported Beijing students in their fight for democracy and condemned the CCP's bloody suppression. It is a shame that they subsequently “u-turned”.
Different groups published their publications and leaflets to express their viewpoints on the current situations and future development.
《民主大學》通訊 “University of Democracy” newsletter (replica 複印本）
1989年，北京學生和知識界在天安門廣場成立「民主大學」，可惜這所「大學」只存活一天，就在6月4日血腥鎮壓中被摧毀。一班香港朋友在香港復辦「民主大學」，共辦了15年，舉辦課程、論壇、研習班、出版刊物。連前立法會主席曾鈺成、建制派人士梁美芬也曾擔任講者。In 1989, Beijing students and intellectuals established “University of Democracy” in Tiananmen Square. Unfortunately, this “university” survived only one day and was destroyed in the bloody crackdown in June 4th. Therefore, a group of Hong Kong people reopened the “University of Democracy” in Hong Kong and ran for 15 years, holding courses, forums, seminars, publishing books and magazines. Even the former Legislative Council President Jasper Tsang and the pro-establishment Priscilla Leung served as speakers.
《民主潮》“Democracy Tide” (replica 複印本）
支聯會在八九民運期間出版的《民主潮》。Published by the Alliance during 1989 Democracy Movement.
《民運脈搏》及《信息》“Pulse of the Democracy Movement” and “Information” (replica 複印本）
支聯會曾出版給海外團體知悉內地民主、人權狀況的《民運脈搏》，以及寄到內地突破新聞封鎖的《信息》。曾有《信息》收件人因此被判刑。The Alliance published the “Pulse of the Democracy Movement” informing overseas organizations about the situation of democracy and human rights in China and “Information”, mailed to the mainland China to break the news blockade. A recipient of “Information” was sentenced as a result.
八九民運與「反送中」運動模式 Modes of the Movements
In the history of people bravely standing up against the power, there are many similar methods of resistance. However different approaches may be applied due to different situations encountered in the past and are affected furtherly by different social environments and fighting experiences.
Totalitarian rulers will also “evolve” and know how to use new technology, economy, and various techniques to carry out differentiation, mobilization, and even practice suppression in the name of democracy and the rule of law. How should the people learn from past struggles to promote social change? One should learn from the experience and lessons of the predecessors to reduce mistakes, to unite the forces, to master the situation, to make good use of technology, and focus on attacks to win.
1. 佔領廣場v.s.流動佔領、遍地開花 Occupation of Public Space v.s. Widespread, Fluid Protest
The 1989 Democracy Movement centered on Tiananmen Square, where the students sat, gathered, camped and hunger striked and set up Square headquarters and picket teams.
經歷「雨傘運動」(傘運)後，「反送中」運動不死守一個地方，展現「Be Water (上善若水)」精神。行動地點遍地開花，擴展至全港各區。
After the Umbrella Movement, the Anti-Extradition Movement never locked into one location, demonstrating the spirit of “Be Water”. The location of operation blossomed everywhere and expanded to all districts in Hong Kong.
2. 有大台與無大台 With or Without Central Leadership
The 1989 Democracy Movement took student organizations and student leaders as the leadership skeleton, which was responsible for decision-making, organizing, Square management and dialogue with the government.
During Umbrella Movement, “no big stage” and “decentralization” were already in place. When Anti-Extradition Movement was forming, the above two characteristics became even more obvious. It did not rely on any groups or leaders. Participants mainly discussed, mobilized and made decisions through platforms such as the LIHKG and social media Telegram. However, behind-the-scene support by some organizations should not be ignored.
3. 從「和理非」到勇武抗爭 From “Non-Violent” to “Fierce” Protests
During the 1989 Democracy Movement, even if there were police-civilian clashes (such as the impact of the Xinhua Gate on April 20th), the entire movement was basically carried out in a “peaceful, rational and non-violent” manner until the bloody massacre by troops entering the city. Beijing students mainly strived for such gentle methods as strikes, rallies, speeches, dialogue and hunger strikes.
In the Anti-Extradition Movement, in the face of the government ignoring public opinion and police brutality, frontline protesters escalated their actions. Many people who advocated” peaceful, rational and non-violent”, even if they did not fully agree with the actions of the “brave warriors”, tended to increasingly accept and sympathize with their fierce way, insisting on “brothers climbing the mountain and working hard on their own”.
4. 團結、全民參與和百花齊放 Unity, Mass Participation and Diversity
The 1989 Democracy Movement and the Anti-Extradition Movement were mass participated and cross-class movements. The former lasted for more than 50 days; while the latter spanned longer. There were a variety of ways that people could participate in, which lead to greater unity and stronger collective spirit.
The 1989 Democracy Movement was initiated by university students in Beijing and gradually spread throughout the country, and all sectors of society, including: party and government personnel, people inside and outside the system, intellectuals, the press, workers, and high school students. They took to the streets to protest and showed their support through joint petitions, marches and hunger strikes. The people of Beijing even set up roadblocks to explain the truth to martial law troops entering the city.
In Hong Kong, people from different sectors, regardless of left and right, supported the pro-democracy movement, condemned the bloody crackdown by the Chinese government.
In Anti-Extradition Movement, the Pro-democracy camp and Pro-establishment camp are extremely divided. However, when comparing the break-up situation during the Umbrella Movement, the “non-violent group” and “the valiant” show more mutual understanding and solidarity in the Anti-Extradition Movement. This is one of the reasons why the movement can be sustainable.
With progress of society, the forms of protest adopted by young people of the Anti-Extradition Movement have been more diverse. From joint petitions, fundraising, marches, overseas advertising, non-cooperative actions, three strikes (business, labor and student), flash actions, to the Yellow Economic Circle, etc. were organized suiting each other’s interest.
5. 資訊科技大躍進 Deployment of Changing Information Technology
During the 1989 Democracy Movement, the transmission of information was mainly through traditional methods such as big-character posters, leaflets, newspapers, publications, etc., as well as the broadcasting on the Square, and verbal communication among the people.
At that time, the Internet was not yet popular, and many reporters had to do everything possible to transport the films and videotapes out of China to make the outside world aware of the situation in Beijing.
During the Anti-Extradition Movement, in addition to traditional communication methods, the protestants were better at using various communication software and social media networks, such as establishing different groups on the Telegram platform such as publicity, materials, strategy, exposing backgrounds, and sentry. Everyone put in their expertise and time, used Airdrop to disseminate protest information, photos, etc., and even develops positioning apps to show the location of the police, so that the masses can immediately gather or move flexibly.
6. 運動「國際化」Globalizing the Movement
The world supported the 1989 Democracy Movement with rallies and demonstrations. Beijing students published a “Message to compatriots in Hong Kong” and Chinese people around the world held solidarity rallies. For more than 30 years, the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China, international human rights organizations, and dissidents in exile have been promoting international lobbying and bringing the June 4th Massacre and China ’s human rights issues to the world’s attention, for example, advocating that China’s “most favoured nation” trade status in the United States be linked to human rights, demanding China sign international human rights conventions, submitting reports on June 4th and human rights in China to the United Nations Human Rights councils, and lobbying foreign governments.
During the Anti-Extradition Movement, participants actively attempted to draw global attention to the amendment of the extradition law. They organized crowdfunding to publish advertisements in newspapers around the world in the lead-up to the G20 Summit, petitioned consulates in Hong Kong, and initiated various online petitions. They held rallies requesting the United States to pass the Hong Kong Democracy and Human Rights Act. They liaised with Hong Kong solidarity groups around the world to hold protests abroad in support of Hong Kong.
Further Thinking Questions
Cite the similarities and differences between the 1989 Democracy Movement and the Anti-Extradition Movement.
What factors influence the patterns of 1989 Democracy Movement and the Anti-Extradition Movement?
Do you think that social movements should adhere to the principles of “non-violence”?
In your opinion, what are the pros and cons of the use of force in social movements?
參與者故事 Participants’ Stories
Characters are the soul of social movements. The 1989 Democracy Movement and the Anti-Extradition Movement are the two most widely mobilized social movements in contemporary China. They both had young and brave protesters, selfless and fearless supporters, and elderly guardians who devoted to the Anti-Extradition Movement with the memories of June 4th.
I am ready to be with the students, even if I die. This is for the sake of democracy and freedom. We are all responsible for the rise and fall of the country... Please forgive me. I love you, and always love you.
- Wu Xiangdong, 21-year-old victim of June 4th Massacre
If something happens and I can’t return home safely, please don’t be sad because your daughter and granddaughter has left with firm belief… Even if you don’t understand the reason why I took to the street, I hope you can understand my commitment and be proud of my bravery.
- Tina (pseudonym), 20-year-old fighter in the Anti-Extradition Movement
During the 1989 Democracy Movement, many students protested by hunger strike and wrote their wills to express their determination to swear to death. In the early days of the Anti-Extradition Movement, several young people also made their wills to sue the government for death. Later, the campaign intensified and the repression became more brutal. Yet many young people still continued the struggle and brought their wills with them to the frontline. This sacrificial spirit of young people has exerted a strong emotional mobilization force, causing more people to join the movement.
天安門母親 / 香港媽媽 “Tiananmen Mothers” Group / Hong Kong Mothers
Dear beloved ones, we know that no matter how long we keep on waiting, you will never come home. Yet we firmly believe that justice will prevail in the end. For 30 years, we have united and supported one another. Though unified over the past 30 years, we have also been tormented by disappointment. But we will never give up and will fight on!
——「天安門母親」群體公開信 Open letter from the “Tiananmen Mothers” Group
We don’t want to be like the Tiananmen Mothers. We don’t want to run around for our children after 30 years, and strive for the incident to be characterized as “non-riot”.
We have to organize before our children are shot.
——香港媽媽反送中集氣大會 Hong Kong Mothers Anti-Extradition Rally
「天安門母親」是一群「六四」受難者親屬組織起來的團體，致力搜尋「六四」死難者資料，要求「真相、賠償、問責」，多年來備受打壓。30年後，有一批香港媽媽也組織起來，守護她們的下一代。2019年6月14日的「香港媽媽反送中集氣大會」，高舉「Don’t shoot our kids」標語； 7月5日的「香港媽媽」集會，強調和青年站在一起。
“Tiananmen Mothers” is a group organized by relatives of victims of June 4th. It is dedicated to search for information about the victims of June 4th and demand “truth, compensation and accountability”. They have been frequently suppressed for many years. 30 years later, a group of Hong Kong mothers also organized to protect their next generation. On June 14th, 2019, 6,000 attended the Hong Kong Mothers Anti-Extradition Rally and held slogans exhorting, “Don't shoot our kids”. On July 5th, another 8,000 people joined a second Hong Kong Mothers’ rally to show solidarity with young people.
擋坦克 / 擋子彈 Blocking Tanks / Blocking Bullets
On June 5th, 1989, a young man in a white shirt and black trousers with a plastic bag in his hand, blocked a column of tanks on East Chang’an Avenue until he was dragged away by unknown persons. This image became a symbol of human courage to stand up against tyranny.
On August 25th, 2019, Hong Kong police blasted the first live ammunition in the Anti-Extradition Movement and pointed the real guns at demonstrators. An uncle dressed in a vest and shorts and holding an umbrella rushed up to the muzzle and begged the police not to shoot. The police officer kicked him over, but the uncle stood up and spread his arms to protect the people, known as “Hong Kong Tankman”.
飛虎隊 / 家長車隊 Flying Tigers / Parent Drivers
During the 1989 Democracy Movement, Beijing residents spontaneously formed motorcycle fleet, called “Flying Tigers”, to deliver materials to students. After martial law was implemented, the Flying Tigers circulated news of the army entering the city, calling on people to stop the army and protect the students.
During the Anti-Extradition Movement, every time the police clear the field to round up the demonstrators, the “parent drivers” would dispatch to “pick them after school”. After a protest at the airport on September 1st, as police were closing in, as many as 5,000 vehicles drove out to Tung Chung to pick up the demonstrators. The action was hailed as “Hong Kong’s Dunkirk Big Retreat”.
區議員 District Councilors
The District Council election in 2019 was a referendum. The perseverance and sacrifice of countless demonstrators earned the victory of the democrats. The elected District Councilors shoulder the important tasks of promoting democracy and maintaining public support. The political enlightenment of many “ordinary people turning councilors” came from the 1989 Democracy Movement. They set up street stalls and give talks in the districts to spread the seeds of democracy…
I started participating in the June 4th candlelight vigil from Secondary 6. It becomes clearer and clearer that democracy is very important. As long as China remains a one-party dictatorship, we won’t have any good life in Hong Kong.
My role is likely more at the back end to explain to those in the neighborhood that are not clear about the movement, conduct democratic education, and even turn those taking political stance of “blue” to become comrades of the “yellow”.
——林兆彬 Ben Lam
On June 12th, as the tear gas rose to the overpass of Central Government Offices, I was not able to see with tears dropping continuously. No one knew where to go. This reminded me of the repression occurred on the night of June 4th when people fled in confusion… that moment was most profound because of crying, not only due to tear gas but because of the emotions. Why the government and the police did this?
It was very touching as some at the forefront sacrificed their lives for equality, human rights, democracy, freedom etc.… Since others contributed so much, I have to contribute too.
——張錦雄 Kenneth Cheung
Silver-haired elders are often seen participating in the Anti-Extradition Movement. They are fully equipped like young people with helmets, eye masks, respirators and yellow vests. They hold flowers at the forefront and speak to the police officers earnestly so as to act as a buffer for protecting the demonstrators. They witnessed and vividly remember the massacre of June 4th, and they wish for no more bloodshed.
The most unacceptable is that the SAR Government labelled the actions of young people as “turbulence”, which is equivalent to the student movement in Tiananmen Square in 1989 being characterized as “counter-revolutionary”.
What will be the future of the younger generation and whether they will live without freedom and in fear. I feel the young people coming out this time have every reason for themselves.
——麥洛新 Lok-sun Mak
Young people also come to support the activities we organize, and we can easily feel the mutual support and care between the two generations… Hong Kong belongs to us all, and we don’t need to have the mentality of “who owes who”.
Anti-Extradition Movement is a defensive battle which is very different from the 1989 Democracy Movement that strived for freedom and democracy... As what we originally have are now being taken away, the reaction is much stronger.
——楊寶熙 Po-hei Yeung
The role of journalists is indispensable in both movements for they reveal the truth with their pens and cameras, record history, and even become a part of history as witnesses of historical events. “Perhaps later one day, when we have to come out to speak that protesters were indeed hit by clubs and bullets…” said frontline reporter Ronson Chan.
After all, young people are young people. Even resisting vigorously, eventually they still ask, “What have we done wrong? Why are we treated in this way?” I very much hope that I will be able to report the vindication of June 4th in my life, and I hope I can hold on till that day.
——陳朗昇 Ronson Chan
兩者有一共通處，就是民主要靠自己走出來……人民的聲音最直接最真實，由北大到天安門，由維園到中環，都是用自己的腳走出來。——楊健興 Chris Yeung
The two movements have one thing in common, which is that we are on our own to strive for democracy... The people's voice is the most direct and genuine. From Peking University to Tiananmen Square, and from Victoria Park to Central, people demanded with their own feet.
The more difficult the situation is, the more important the role of journalists. If we give up, we not only give up our beliefs and missions, but also go against the expectations of the public and the society.
極權統治者會「進化」？ Do Totalitarian Rulers “Evolve”?
1989 Democracy Movement and Anti-Extradition Movement faced the same totalitarian ruler. Bao Tong, secretary of former CCP General Secretary Zhao Ziyang, stated, “2019 surpassed 1989. The massacre on June 4th was just overnight. But the slow torture and execution of Hong Kong has become the ecstatic feast and norm of this new era.” If the June 4th repression model was a tough one in the main battlefield, the current mode of repression is breaking up the whole into parts, which escalate gradually, with a variety of tactics such as offensive propaganda, and provoking opposition among rivalry camp. As new methods are added to old tricks, the totalitarian ruler’s repression is “evolving” over time.
It is a common tactic used by those in power to vilify civil resistant movements to create the basis for violent repression. The editorial of the People’s Daily on April 26th 1989 characterized the student movement as “turmoil”. Even in 2018, the CCP still characterized the movement as “turmoil” and “counter-revolutionary riot”. During the Anti-Extradition Movement, the CCP and HKSAR Government continued to emphasize “stop violence and suppress chaos” and smear the entire civil resistance movement as “terrorism”.
The CCP criticized liberal intellectuals including Yan Jiaqi, Chen Ziming, and Liu Xiaobo, etc. as the “black hands” behind the 1989 Democracy Movement, planning and inciting a “turmoil”. During the Anti-Extradition Movement, the CCP and HKSAR Government blamed “foreign forces” for funding and inciting demonstrations in Hong Kong in order to shirk their responsibility for improper governance.
In Beijing in 1989, the CCP slaughtered unarmed civilians and students, dispatched tanks and armored vehicles to kill the people, and forcibly drove to Tiananmen Square to clear the scene, causing countless deaths and injuries. In Hong Kong in 2019, although there were no tanks on the street or scenes of live ammunition, the armed police conducted anti-riot drills in Shenzhen to intimidate the Hong Kong people. The Hong Kong police recklessly fired tear gas, rubber bullets, bean bag rounds, pepper spray, and water cannon at the people. Riot police also indiscriminately attacked the citizens and reporters. In addition, countless mysterious cases of bodies falling off the buildings and floating corpses found at sea were treated as no suspicious surrounding their death and hence not to be followed up by the police. Hence, the brutality and casualty of the Anti-Extradition Movement was no less severe than that of June 4th Massacre.
The 1989 Democracy Movement took place in the heart of the capital and involved intra-party factional struggles. The CCP feared that the movement would tumble the regime, so it promptly resolved it with a massacre. As Hong Kong is far from the center of power and the Anti-Extradition Movement was not about the survival of the regime. Moreover, Britain and the United States have profound economic and political interests in Hong Kong. Therefore, the CCP adopted delaying tactics in Hong Kong.
After the June 4th Massacre, the CCP immediately launched mass arrests and widespread purges. Hong Kong people contributed money and risked their lives in launching the “Operation Yellowbird” to rescue several hundred people from China.
Until the middle of May 2020, more than 8,300 people have been arrested and nearly 600 people were charged with rioting in the Anti-Extradition Movement. Some protestors were forced to go into exile overseas. The authority kept on conducting indiscriminate arrests and prosecution. Massive political oppression is carried on. More than a dozen Hong Kong high-profile democracy figures were arrested, including the founding chairman of Democratic Party Martin Lee Chu-ming and executive committee member of the Civic Party and Barrister Margaret Ng Ngoi-yee.
逃責 Evading Responsibility
Since 1995, “Tiananmen Mothers” Group has published open letters to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress every year, requesting for an independent and impartial investigation of the truth of June 4th, and to publish the number and the list of the dead, to compensate the victims and their relatives, and to hold those in power accountable for their wrong deeds. But the authorities has never formally responded.
In the Anti-Extradition Movement of 2019, after the “June 12th” police force cracked down, the demonstrators demanded the establishment of an independent investigation committee to investigate the matter. The demand was supported by over 80% of the people through public opinion survey, but the government refused to do so. Hence, those in power are often afraid of exposing the truth, and do not want to take criminal responsibility, and to compensate the victims, but to use all possible methods to cover up, or even tamper with history.
The 2019 Anti-Extradition Movement was called the "Water Revolution". Not only did it highlight the characteristics of this movement, but it also pointed out the conditions that a democratic movement must have: the flow of an endless stream, and the power of water drops to wear stones. The outbreak of Hong Kong's resistance forces was not accidental. It has accumulated for many years. The 1989 Democracy Movement was undoubtedly an important source. Since then, Hong Kong has experienced large and small movements, the accumulation and improvement of the resistance experience have finally paved the way for the unprecedented scale of Anti-Extradition Movement.
Professor Ma Ngok of the Chinese University of Hong Kong believes that this movement is no longer simply a battle to protect a city for freedom, but represents the free world's resistance to the expansion of authoritarian power. As a free international cosmopolitan city for many years, whether Hong Kong can maintain its free status has crucial symbolic meaning. The courage and strength of the people of Hong Kong demonstrated in the movement has not only preserved the flames of struggle for Hong Kong under totalitarian rule, but also inspired and contributed to civil society around the world.
Tide rises and recedes at intervals, but the torrent of democracy will eventually be unstoppable. As Dr. Wu Ruiren, a Taiwanese historian said at the September 29th, 2019 Anti-Totalitarianism Assembly in Taipei, “Water will become flood, the empire will fall.”