[current_date format=l,] [current_date]

The Immortal “Tank Man” and the Man Who Speaks Now

June 4 marks the 34th anniversary of what has come to be known as the “Tiananmen Square Massacre.” On this day, Chinese troops opened fire on unarmed civilians, mostly students, bringing a sudden and bloody halt to the protest movement demanding reforms and liberalization. No one knows how many died but it is widely believed that hundreds, if not thousands, were slaughtered as soldiers moved to crush the seven-week movement for democracy. On June 5, 1989, the morning after the Chinese military violently suppressed the Tiananmen Square protests, the picture of the “Tank Man” sent shockwaves throughout the entire world. Many have recognized its symbolic parallels to the story of the boy David against the giant Goliath. The sheer strength of this photo — one unarmed man, alone and helpless

June 4 marks the 34th anniversary of what has come to be known as the “Tiananmen Square Massacre.” On this day, Chinese troops opened fire on unarmed civilians, mostly students, bringing a sudden and bloody halt to the protest movement demanding reforms and liberalization. No one knows how many died but it is widely believed that hundreds, if not thousands, were slaughtered as soldiers moved to crush the seven-week movement for democracy.

On June 5, 1989, the morning after the Chinese military violently suppressed the Tiananmen Square protests, the picture of the “Tank Man” sent shockwaves throughout the entire world. Many have recognized its symbolic parallels to the story of the boy David against the giant Goliath. The sheer strength of this photo — one unarmed man, alone and helpless against several tanks — struck a chord with the entire globe, except for China’s leaders. Today, 34 years later, we still do not know who that man was or what happened to him because the Chinese government has censored much of the data. But the Tank Man remains immortal with an iconic status in the pages of world history.

Since the entire event is censored in China, only people who were there at the event or lost someone dear live with painful memories. The present generation can only learn about the event through the stories shared by their parents and relatives.

The Chinese government has never acknowledged the true events surrounding the Tiananmen Massacre. It remains a taboo topic in China; authorities have banned all mention of the protest even today. Attempts to discuss, commemorate, and demand justice for what happened have been forcefully curbed. Since 1989, many people have been imprisoned for commemorating events or questioning the official line.

Where is the iconic protestor of the 20th century?

Despite the censorship, one thing that has endured is the image of the “Tank Man,” which is still seared in the public memory. He is the brave face of defiance against an oppressive regime. Thirty-four years later, his identity is still a mystery. He is called simply “Tank Man.” Every year on the anniversary of the crackdown, Chinese bloggers pay homage to him with imitations and parodies of the face-off.

This ordinary man in black trousers and a white shirt, carrying shopping bags in each hand, demonstrated the most awe-inspiring fortitude by trying to block the path of the tanks, even as they gunned their engines. He climbed onto the first tank banging on the hatchet, and he appeared to speak to the soldiers inside. When he stepped back down in front of the tank, two men ran into the street and pulled him away. Nobody knows if those two men were Chinese security or some well-meaning people who wanted to keep him out of harm’s way. The confrontation became one of the most enduring images of the pro-democracy, anti-corruption protests that swept China that year.

The Information Centre for Human Rights and Democracy Movement in China said in 1998, that it had obtained official party documents that showed authorities had no idea what happened to him. In a 1990 interview with Barbara Walters, former Chinese leader Jiang Zemin said he could not confirm whether the man was arrested or not. Throughout most of the interview he used an interpreter, but at this point, he responded to Walters in English saying, “I think never, never killed.”

Bruce Herschensohn, a former deputy special assistant to former US President Richard Nixon, told the President Club in 1999 that Tank Man was executed 14 days later.

Others claim he was put to death by a firing squad a few months after the protests. Many, however, remain hopeful Tank Man is still alive; he may have no idea of the intrigue his picture has created thanks to China’s strict censorship of the image.

Photographers recall that single defining moment

Though it was Jeff Widener’s photograph that was published first, there was more than one “Tank Man” photo. The photograph is still considered credible because Photoshop did not exist at that time.  Four photographers captured the encounter that day from the Beijing Hotel, overlooking Changan Avenue (the Avenue of Eternal Peace), their lives forever linked by a single moment in time. “I think his action captured people’s hearts everywhere, and when the moment came, his character defined the moment, rather than the moment defining him,” said Charlie Cole, one of the photographers.

Denials and Disbelief

There are still naysayers, conspiracy theorists, and Chinese officials who deny the Tiananmen Square Massacre and blame the US for fomenting the Tiananmen Square protests.

There is still much speculation about the Tank Man’s disappearance. Some say he quietly slipped back into a life of anonymity or migrated to Taiwan, whereas others, as mentioned previously, believe that he was executed by a firing squad or is still serving a prison term. Whatever it may be, the Tank Man is immortal with an iconic status in the pages of world history.

Not everyone was as lucky as the “Tank Man”

When the Tiananmen Square Massacre comes to mind, many people think of the “Tank Man,” and his heroism, but for Fang Zheng, this iconic figure only represents one part of the story. The reality was that most tanks did not stop.

On June 4, 1989, at around 6 a.m., Fang Zheng a student at Beijing Sport University, along with his classmates, had gone to Tiananmen Square to appeal for freedom and to call for an end to corruption in the Chinese regime. They were ambushed by tanks and smoke bombs were thrown at them to obscure their vision.

Fang Zheng in his home on Feb. 20, 2019. TThe Chinese words painted on the van say: End the Chinese Communist Party regime, and build new constitutional democracy in China. (Photo: Fang Zeng/Epoch Times)

Fang Zheng noticed a girl faint due to the smoke attack. He tried to help her when a tank quickly appeared, intending to crush both of them. Zheng pushed the girl to the side and saved her. However, he had no time to run. “The last thing I remember is seeing the white of my bone sticking out of my leg,” he said. “That was the last image before I lost consciousness.”

“I hope everyone can remember this,” he said, adding he knows of 11 people who were crushed to death and others injured like he was. “The first thing the Party wanted was for us to shut up. They didn’t want us to tell other people,” he said. But he knew he could not remain silent about this state-approved mass murder of citizens. For telling the truth, he was arrested, his home was ransacked by police, he was unable to get a job, and his freedom was restricted.

As an athlete, Fang Zheng wanted to participate in international sports competitions for the disabled, but his rights were stripped by the Communist Party for fear his story would get out. He was even denied a passport to leave the country.

By the 2008 Beijing Olympics, foreign journalists were keen to interview Fang Zheng. The Public Security Bureau got wind of the upcoming interview and told Zheng that if he declined the interview and did not introduce the journalist to other victims of the Massacre, they would issue him a passport.

Zheng complied and was finally offered a passport on August 28, 2008. With help from the US government, he and his family immigrated to the United States.

I would recommend watching these 4 rare videos on Zhang Jian’s personal account about Tiananmen Square Massacre:



More on this topic

More Stories

Refreshing and Insights
at No Cost to You!

Cancel anytime

Latest Articles

Leave a Reply


Top Products

Contact us

Wherever & whenever you are,
we are here always.

The Middle Land

100 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 700 Santa Monica, CA 90401
Footer Contact

To Editor

Terms and Conditions

October, 2023

Using our website

You may use the The Middle Land website subject to the Terms and Conditions set out on this page. Visit this page regularly to check the latest Terms and Conditions. Access and use of this site constitutes your acceptance of the Terms and Conditions in-force at the time of use.

Intellectual property

Names, images and logos displayed on this site that identify The Middle Land are the intellectual property of New San Cai Inc. Copying any of this material is not permitted without prior written approval from the owner of the relevant intellectual property rights.

Requests for such approval should be directed to the competition committee.

Please provide details of your intended use of the relevant material and include your contact details including name, address, telephone number, fax number and email.

Linking policy

You do not have to ask permission to link directly to pages hosted on this website. However, we do not permit our pages to be loaded directly into frames on your website. Our pages must load into the user’s entire window.

The Middle Land is not responsible for the contents or reliability of any site to which it is hyperlinked and does not necessarily endorse the views expressed within them. Linking to or from this site should not be taken as endorsement of any kind. We cannot guarantee that these links will work all the time and have no control over the availability of the linked pages.


All information, data, text, graphics or any other materials whatsoever uploaded or transmitted by you is your sole responsibility. This means that you are entirely responsible for all content you upload, post, email or otherwise transmit to the The Middle Land website.

Virus protection

We make every effort to check and test material at all stages of production. It is always recommended to run an anti-virus program on all material downloaded from the Internet. We cannot accept any responsibility for any loss, disruption or damage to your data or computer system, which may occur while using material derived from this website.


The website is provided ‘as is’, without any representation or endorsement made, and without warranty of any kind whether express or implied.

Your use of any information or materials on this website is entirely at your own risk, for which we shall not be liable. It is your responsibility to ensure any products, services or information available through this website meet your specific requirements.

We do not warrant the operation of this site will be uninterrupted or error free, that defects will be corrected, or that this site or the server that makes it available are free of viruses or represent the full functionality, accuracy and reliability of the materials. In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including, without limitation, loss of profits, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damages whatsoever arising from the use, or loss of data, arising out of – or in connection with – the use of this website.

Privacy & Cookie Policy

October, 2023

Last Updated: October 1, 2023

New San Cai Inc. (hereinafter “The Middle Land,” “we,” “us,” or “our”) owns and operates www.themiddleland.com, its affiliated websites and applications (our “Sites”), and provides related products, services, newsletters, and other offerings (together with the Sites, our “Services”) to art lovers and visitors around the world.

This Privacy Policy (the “Policy”) is intended to provide you with information on how we collect, use, and share your personal data. We process personal data from visitors of our Sites, users of our Services, readers or bloggers (collectively, “you” or “your”). Personal data is any information about you. This Policy also describes your choices regarding use, access, and correction of your personal information.

If after reading this Policy you have additional questions or would like further information, please contact us.


We collect and process personal data only for lawful reasons, such as our legitimate business interests, your consent, or to fulfill our legal or contractual obligations.

Information You Provide to Us

Most of the information Join Talents collects is provided by you voluntarily while using our Services. We do not request highly sensitive data, such as health or medical information, racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade union membership, etc. and we ask that you refrain from sending us any such information.

Here are the types of personal data that you voluntarily provide to us:

  • Name, email address, and any other contact information that you provide by filling out your profile forms
  • Billing information, such as credit card number and billing address
  • Work or professional information, such as your company or job title
  • Unique identifiers, such as username or password
  • Demographic information, such as age, education, interests, and ZIP code
  • Details of transactions and preferences from your use of the Services
  • Correspondence with other users or business that you send through our Services, as well as correspondence sent to JoinTalents.com

As a registered users or customers, you may ask us to review or retrieve emails sent to your business. We will access these emails to provide these services for you.

We use the personal data you provide to us for the following business purposes:

  • Set up and administer your account
  • Provide and improve the Services, including displaying content based on your previous transactions and preferences
  • Answer your inquiries and provide customer service
  • Send you marketing communications about our Services, including our newsletters (please see the Your Rights/Opt Out section below for how to opt out of marketing communications)
  • Communicate with users who registered their accounts on our site
  • Prevent, discover, and investigate fraud, criminal activity, or violations of our Terms and Conditions
  • Administer contests and events you entered

Information Obtained from Third-Party Sources

We collect and publish biographical and other information about users, which we use to promote the articles and our bloggers  who use our sites. If you provide personal information about others, or if others give us your information, we will only use that information for the specific reason for which it was provided.

Information We Collect by Automated Means

Log Files

The site uses your IP address to help diagnose server problems, and to administer our website. We use your IP addresses to analyze trends and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use.

Every time you access our Site, some data is temporarily stored and processed in a log file, such as your IP addresses, the browser types, the operating systems, the recalled page, or the date and time of the recall. This data is only evaluated for statistical purposes, such as to help us diagnose problems with our servers, to administer our sites, or to improve our Services.

Do Not Track

Your browser or device may include “Do Not Track” functionality. Our information collection and disclosure practices, and the choices that we provide to customers, will continue to operate as described in this Privacy Policy, whether or not a “Do Not Track” signal is received.


We may share your personal data with third parties only in the ways that are described in this Privacy Policy. We do not sell, rent, or lease your personal data to third parties, and We does not transfer your personal data to third parties for their direct marketing purposes.

We may share your personal data with third parties as follows:

  • With service providers under contract to help provide the Services and assist us with our business operations (such as our direct marketing, payment processing, fraud investigations, bill collection, affiliate and rewards programs)
  • As required by law, such as to comply with a subpoena, or similar legal process, including to meet national security or law enforcement requirements
  • When we believe in good faith that disclosure is necessary to protect rights or safety, investigate fraud, or respond to a government request
  • With other users of the Services that you interact with to help you complete a transaction

There may be other instances where we share your personal data with third parties based on your consent.


We retain your information for as long as your account is active or as needed to provide you Services. If you wish to cancel your account or request that we no longer use your personal data, contact us. We will retain and use your personal data as necessary to comply with legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our agreements.

All you and our data are stored in the server in the United States, we do not sales or transfer your personal data to the third party. All information you provide is stored on a secure server, and we generally accepted industry standards to protect the personal data we process both during transmission and once received.


You may correct, update, amend, delete/remove, or deactivate your account and personal data by making the change on your Blog on www.themiddleland.com or by emailing our customer service. We will respond to your request within a reasonable timeframe.

You may choose to stop receiving Join Talents newsletters or marketing emails at any time by following the unsubscribe instructions included in those communications, or you can contact us.


The Middle Land include links to other websites whose privacy practices may differ from that of ours. If you submit personal data to any of those sites, your information is governed by their privacy statements. We encourage you to carefully read the Privacy Policy of any website you visit.


Our Services are not intended for use by children, and we do not knowingly or intentionally solicit data from or market to children under the age of 18. We reserve the right to delete the child’s information and the child’s registration on the Sites.


We may update this Privacy Policy to reflect changes to our personal data processing practices. If any material changes are made, we will notify you on the Sites prior to the change becoming effective. You are encouraged to periodically review this Policy.


If you have any questions about our Privacy Policy, please contact customer service or send us mail at:

The Middle Land/New San Cai
100 Wilshire Blvd., 7th Floor
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Article Submission


Are you sure? Do you want to logout of the account?

New Programs Added to Your Plan

March 2, 2023

The Michelin brothers created the guide, which included information like maps, car mechanics listings, hotels and petrol stations across France to spur demand.

The guide began to award stars to fine dining restaurants in 1926.

At first, they offered just one star, the concept was expanded in 1931 to include one, two and three stars. One star establishments represent a “very good restaurant in its category”. Two honour “excellent cooking, worth a detour” and three reward “exceptional cuisine, worth a


February 28, 2023        Hiring Journalists all hands apply

January 18, 2023          Hiring Journalists all hands apply


Leave a Reply

Forgot Password ?

Please enter your email id or user name to
recover your password

Thank you for your participation!
Back to Home
Thank you for your subscription!
Please check your email to activate your account.
Back to Home
Thank you for your participation!
Please check your email for the results.
Back to Home

Login to Vote!

Thank you for your participation,
please Log in or Sign up to Vote

Thank you for your Comment

Back to Home

Reply To:

New Programs Added to Your Plan

Login Now

123Sign in to your account