Tell us what happened to the "Tank Man"

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June 4th, 1989. Tiananmen Square, Beijing. A man holding grocery bags steps in front of a heavily armed tank, one of many sent to crush pro-democracy protests. The tank tries to maneuver around him. He doesn’t let it. Cameras capture it all, and the world awakens to the Chinese struggle for democracy.

To this day, we don’t know what happened to these heroes -- the man in front of the tank and the man inside the who chose to spare his life.

Today, two of us, FANG Zheng and YANG Jianli, have come together as survivors of the Tiananmen Massacre and activists for democracy in China, we are calling on Chinese President Xi Jinping to tell the Chinese people and the world what happened to the two “tank men.”

The Chinese people remain under totalitarian rule -- don’t let the Chinese government’s propaganda about their reforms fool you. Those who speak out for democracy still face violence, prison, and sometimes are never heard from again. If we can get the Chinese government to tell us what happened to the “tank men,” it will help to push the door open to true, democratic reform.

Please join us, other survivors of the Tiananmen Massacre, democratic activists, and leaders from around the world in calling on the Chinese president to tell the world what happened to the “tank men.”


Here is a little more information about who we are:

  • FANG Zheng was a student of Beijing Sport University. During the Tiananmen Massacre, FANG lost both of his legs when he pushed a fainted female student away from a charging PLA tank. FANG arrived United States in 2009, and founded the Chinese Democracy Education Foundation.
  • YANG Jianli was a student of UC Berkeley when he returned to Beijing to join the Tiananmen Student Movement. After escaping the gruesome massacre, YANG dedicated his entire life in promoting a peaceful democratization. When he returned to China again in 2002, he was put in prison for 5 years. Upon his release, YANG founded Initiatives for China.