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PacNet #23 – Tiananmen Expands into the Future

In spite of the regime’s claim of no change in the Tiananmen verdict, the tragedy in 1989 has been revisited often over the last ten years by Chinese people in private and informal deliberations. People have not forgotten, though their perception of the event and its implication has changed over time. Today, the Chinese public has more or less converged on some basics, making a reversal of the official verdict increasingly a mere symbolic matter. Indeed, the substantive Tiananmen, unboxable into a verdict, is defining China’s political evolution into the next century.