Tang Baiqiao in Overseas Community Affairs Council
|Born||August 11, 1967|
Tang Baiqiao (Chinese: 唐柏桥; born 11 August 1967, Yongzhou; sometimes spelled Tang Boqiao) is a Chinese political dissident from Hunan province who led student protests during the 1989 democracy movement. After the incident at Tiananmen Square, Tang fled from agents of the Communist Party of China who eventually arrested him in the city of Jiangmen. He was charged with being a counter-revolutionary and imprisoned. Upon his release, he fled to Hong Kong, where he co-authored the report Anthems of Defeat: Crackdown in Hunan Province 1989 - 1992 through Human Rights Watch with Dr. Robin Munro of the University of London. Tang was later accepted into the United States as a political refugee in 1992. Tang claimed that he graduated in 2003 with a Master's degree in international affairs from Columbia University, but university archive and registrar of Columbia University claimed that he studied there but did not graduate.
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Arrival in the U.S.
Tang arrived in the United States in April, 1992. In June of that year, at a press conference in Washington, D.C., he announced the existence of an underground group called the All-China People's Autonomous Federation. According to Tang, the Federation was, at that time, operating in the People's Republic of China, and consisted mostly of former students who had taken part in the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989. Tang called himself the group's "overseas spokesman." He refused to cite specific members of the group for fear of reprisal by the Chinese Communist Party. The Federation's existence was corroborated by Dr. Robin Munro, who reportedly called the group "extensive and well organized."
Tang was also cited by officials of Asia Watch, a division of Human Rights Watch, for contributing the majority of research to a publication called Anthems of Defeat: Crackdown in Hunan Province 1989 - 1992. The book details some of the harshest punishments and human rights atrocities meted out by the CCP in the wake of Tiananmen Square. Among these were the plight of three Chinese dissidents sentenced up to life imprisonment for hurling paint at an image of Mao Zedong in connection with student protests during the 1989 democracy movement.
Since his escape from China, Tang Baiqiao has remained very active in the pro-democracy movement. In particular, he has called for a reassessment of China's human rights policies (including the number of actual casualties sustained in the Tiananmen Square massacre), an examination of the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners worldwide, support for the Dalai Lama's efforts to negotiate change for Tibet, and an end to the Chinese Communist Party. As recently as 2007, Tang alleged that many Chinese Students and Scholars Associations are actually funded by, and function as spies for, the Chinese Communist Party[deprecated source]
In an August 2009 interview with The Epoch Times: "I resist [CCP violence], not only for myself, but for all the dissidents, Falun Gong practitioners...all the people of this country [who wish] to be free, everyone has freedom of speech, [and should be able to] express their views."[deprecated source]
Tang is a frequent on-air special commentator for New Tang Dynasty Television. He is a spokesman and officer for the China Interim Government. His articles have appeared in the Journal of International Affairs and Beijing Spring, among other publications.
Retrospective commentary on Tiananmen Square
In 1999, in an interview with Human Rights Watch, Tang stated that, "The 1989 democracy movement and the June 4 crackdown cut off any meaningful movement toward political change." Specifically, he said that public discussion related to political reforms were taking place before the Tiananmen Square protests. Tang noted that the reform efforts of Zhao Ziyang, Bao Tong, and Chen Yizi might well have prevailed had the crackdown never occurred. In essence, Tiananmen Square allowed CCP leaders such as Jiang Zemin to consolidate their power over the Party, the government, and the military.
In the same interview, Tang noted that corruption, not political reform, was the primary concern of student protestors. He pointed out that students also wished to see Hu Yaobang rehabilitated, as well as increased social benefits for intellectuals. Tang maintains that issues of democracy and human rights only emerged in the end stages of Tiananmen Square, and then somewhat tangentially. However, Tang notes that, due to the 1989 movement, the Chinese government has allowed greater economic, social, and cultural freedoms.
On July 6, 2009, Tang Baiqiao suffered an seemingly unprovoked assault by several men at a karaoke bar in Flushing, the Chinatown section of Queens. Tang suffered injuries to his face and hand. He maintains the assault was orchestrated and perpetrated by agents of the CCP, most likely in retaliation against statements he made in defense of Falun Gong practitioners, as well as his support for the Tuidang movement, which encourages renunciation of the Communist Party. However, Tang admitted his frustration that United States law enforcement were not convinced the attacks came from Communist sources. His claim has never been independently verified.
His version of events was supported by several New York leaders of the Chinese pro-democracy movement. Tang held a press conference at Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C. on July 30, 2009. He denounced the attacks, and called them reminiscent of a similar event that occurred in 2008 where mobs of up to 600 people physically and verbally assaulted Falun Gong members volunteering at a neighborhood community action center.
Anthems of Defeat: Crackdown in Hunan Province 1989 - 1992, with Robin Munro (1991)
Tang wrote the foreword to Peter Navarro's 2011 book Death by China, which highlights the threats to America's economic dominance in the 21st century posed by China's Communist Party.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Tang Baiqiao.|
- Tang Baiqiao (2017-08-11). "Today is my birthday". @Baiqiaoch (in Chinese). Retrieved 2017-12-16.
- School of Oriental and African Studies profile Archived 2011-07-04 at the Wayback Machine
- Yale Press
- New Tang Dynasty TV article
- "回应刘青之妻韩晓榕------兼回顾"公民议政"之死". www.duping.net. Retrieved 2019-04-10.
- 袁东1972 (2017-12-03). "唐柏桥"哥伦比亚大学毕业"？有人得到哥大邮件回复：我的登记注册办公室同事Bill Santin查到了一位名叫唐柏桥的人2001年9月至2003年5月参加了SIPA学院(国际公共事务学院)学习，但是没有从哥大毕业。pic.twitter.com/bDA0kMjuyb". @tryhardandhard (in Chinese). Retrieved 2019-04-10.
- 唐柏桥 (2017-05-31). "我是哥倫比亞大學畢業的。我可以負責任地告訴大家，我同學中可能很難找出一個比郭文貴更有見識和思想的人。與君一席話勝讀十年書，郭每天都在跟這個世界上最有學問和思想的人交流，他求教的都是政治經濟宗教界的大師。那些嘲笑他沒文化的人，根本不知道文化二字的含意！". @baiqiaoch (in Chinese). Retrieved 2019-04-10.
- Tang, Baiqiao. My Two Chinas: A Memoir of a Chinese Counterrevolutionary. Prometheus Books, 2011. ISBN 978-1-61614-44-56. First illustrations page: "Baiqiao Tang as a student at Lingling Number Four High School, Hunan Province, 1984."
- Tang, Baiqiao. My Two Chinas: A Memoir of a Chinese Counterrevolutionary. Prometheus Books, 2011. ISBN 978-1-61614-44-56. p. 45.
- https://www.nytimes.com/1992/06/03/world/chinese-dissident-in-west-tells-of-underground-rights-network.html New York Times article; June 3, 1992
- https://www.nytimes.com/1992/06/01/world/china-is-accused-of-torturing-3-who-defaced-mao-portrait.html New York Times Times article; June 1, 1992
- PolitInfo.com, 2004 article Archived 2004-12-28 at the Wayback Machine
- Students for a Free Tibet Archived 2005-12-22 at the Wayback Machine
- Queens Tribune Archived 2008-09-07 at the Wayback Machine
- http://www.theepochtimes.com/news/7-7-1/57149.html Epoch Times article
- The Epoch Times August, 2009 article
- China Support Network
- Human Rights Watch China: 10 Years After Tiananmen
- China Rights Forum, 2004 Archived 2009-10-29 at the Wayback Machine
- Journal of International Affairs article
- Beijing Spring
- Why I translate all of Trump's tweets into Chinese', BBC, Zhaoyin Feng, 9 August 2019