China We Will March!

Will March!" Students confront Peking with its most serious challenge in years

Day after day, students in cities from Kunming to Shanghai to Peking marched through the streets waving banners vaguely demanding "freedom" and % "democracy." And day after day the central government in Peking reacted with total silence, blacking out all news of the protests. Then, last week, the government finally decided how it would handle the largest outbreak of youthful unrest in China in a decade. When Peking finally spoke, its tone was at once threatening and conciliatory.

The students' feelings about the need for more personal freedom were legitimate enough, declared a front-page commentary in the official party newspaper, the...

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