China Blue Smoke and Mirrors

The government ends martial law, but neither rebellious students nor the U.S. Congress is impressed

The move was trumpeted in a nationally televised address and was well received by foreign governments. But when China finally lifted martial law, which was imposed on parts of its capital eight months ago to crush the pro- democracy movement, the response in Beijing was "Wu suo wei" -- it makes no difference. Despite official repeal of the decree, the government appeared to have ended the crackdown in name only: soldiers who had switched into the uniforms of civilian police were cropping up all over town, and there was no sign that their orders to suppress any hint of new unrest...

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