The USC U.S.-China Institute talks with author David M. Lampton on his new book, which examines China’s effort to create an intercountry railway system connecting China and its seven Southeast Asian neighbors.
Tiananmen Square Document 31: Cable, What Happened on the Night of June 3/4?, 1989
This document, as its authors state in the outset, "attempts to set the record straight" about the events of the night of June 3-4. Contrary to earlier reports in the western media, the cable asserts that many if not most of the deaths associated with the crackdown occurred on Changan Avenue and other streets surrounding the square, rather than on Tiananmen Square itself. The document calls the notion that the military could have suffered more casualties than civilians "inconceivable," but holds that "civilian deaths probably did not reach the figure of 3,000 used in some press reports," but believes that the figure put forward by the Chinese Red Cross of 2,600 military and civilian deaths with 7,000 wounded to be "not an unreasonable estimate." The cable concludes with a detailed, hour-by-hour chronology of the events of the night of June 3-4.
To access the document, please click here.