June 4th Thank You Note to the Tiananmen Martial Law Forces

Zhou Enlai memorial website offers resources such as old issues of People’s Daily. I looked up some articles from around June 4th. http://home.zhouenlai.info/

While the Chinese press and government rarely make any reference to the massacres around June 4th in Beijing and elsewhere, one can still find some bit and pieces in old newspapers.

This notice dated June 4th which appeared in the June 5th issue of People’s Daily made quite an impression on me.  I first did a Google Translate from Chinese to English and then corrected the translation and broke up the paragraphs to make the text more readable. Google Translate has gotten much better on the Chinese -> English language pair over the past five years.

General Staff Department General Political Department General Logistics Department

Letter of condolences to the Martial Law Forces

Dear All PLA officers, police officers and armed police comrades who perform the martial law tasks:

You have given your all! First of all, let us on behalf of the officers and men of the entire PLA warmly congratulate you on your great victory in quelling the serious counter-revolutionary riots in Beijing, restoring the solemn face of Tiananmen Square and the normal order of the capital!

You have achieved an immortal historical feat in defending the Republic and defending the capital of our great motherland! The Party thanks you! The people of the whole country thank you!

In the past few days, the situation in the capital has deteriorated, and the turmoil deliberately created by a very small number of people has evolved into a serious counter-revolutionary riot.

They cut off traffic, burned buildings, burned military vehicles, robbed weapons, and kidnapped, beaten, and killed officers and men of the martial law forces.  They were extremely arrogant in their attacks on the Party and socialism.

At this critical juncture, in order to defend the lives and property of the people of the capital and defend the Party and the socialist system, you resolutely implemented the orders of the Central Military Commission and resolutely enforced our sacred martial law.

As you made your way down the road, you faced at times violent sieges, inhumane beatings and illegal kidnappings by the mobs, you remember trust the Party and the people have in you,  and relying on the masses of the people and young students in Beijing, you persisted in the face of hardship.  In a brave and fearless spirit of bloody sacrifice, you took resolute and decisive measures, and smashed the counter-revolutionary arrogance of the group of gangsters who had stirred up the riots.

With your own loyalty and blood, you restored the solemn dignity of Tiananmen Square, defended the capital, defended the People’s Republic founded by our revolutionary predecessors. You defended the achievements of the decade of reform. You are worthy of being a loyal guardian of the party and loyal to the people. You are worthy of defending the loyal guards of the cause of socialist modernization and deserve to be the strong pillar of the people’s democratic dictatorship.

We would like to extend our cordial condolences to all the officers and men who have made outstanding contributions in this fight! We would like to pay tribute to the glorious comrades!

We deeply mourn those martyrs to the revolution our heroically gave their lives!

Comrades, this is a long-term and complex struggle.  Occupying your duty station at Tiananmen Square and restoring order there was only an initial victory. The task ahead is even more arduous.

We hope that you will thoroughly study the important speeches of the leading comrades of the Communist Party Central Committee and the martial law orders of the State Council, come to better understand the nature and significance of this struggle, and firmly carry out the struggle to quell the counter-revolutionary riots and stop social unrest.

We hope that you will maintain a high degree of political vigilance, stick to your position, be loyal to your duties, and be ready to fight the counterattack of a small mob and consolidate and develop the fruits of victory.

We hope that you will carry out the activities of “Love the Capital, Love the People of the Capital, and Love Young Students” in a down-to-earth manner, firmly unite the masses of the people and young students, and maximize isolation and combat against a small mob.

We hope that you will strengthen the discipline of the organization, resolutely execute the orders, obey the command, strictly abide by the three disciplines and pay attention to the three disciplines, protect the capital of the grass and trees, and use iron discipline and strict military capacity to show the military and the people of the whole country the spirit of the division and the teacher of civilization.

We hope that you will continue to carry forward the revolutionary spirit of hard work, hardship, and continuous assault. They will always maintain high morale and complete the glorious tasks entrusted by the party and the people.

We pay tribute to the great people’s warriors who fought bravely to fulfill the sacred duties entrusted by the Constitution!

We pay tribute to the glorious people’s soldiers who have worked tirelessly to defend the motherland and defend the people’s peaceful labor!

General Staff of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army
General Political Department
General Logistics Department
June 4, 1989

(Xinhua News Agency)

总参谋部 总政治部 总后勤部







About 高大伟 David Cowhig

Worked 25 years as a US State Department Foreign Service Officer including ten years at US Embassy Beijing and US Consulate General Chengdu and four years as a China Analyst in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research. Before State I translated Japanese and Chinese scientific and technical books and articles into English freelance for six years. Before that I taught English at Tunghai University in Taiwan for three years. And before that I worked two summers on Norwegian farms, milking cows and feeding chickens.
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