By: Michael, Arnav, and Ben

Deng Xiaoping, The 4 Modernizations, and the Tiananmen Square Massacre

Deng Xiaoping

Deng Xiaoping was born on August 22, 1904. He was a Chinese communist leader that was the most powerful person in China from the 1970's to 1997, when he died. Mao Zedong initially praised him, but he fell out with him. Deng's emphasis on self-interest didn't sit well with him. Zedong set him and his family to the Jiangxi province to undergo reeducation. In 1973, Zhou Enlai felt China needed Deng's organizational skills and he brought a major reorganization of the government. He was thought to be his successor and became leader after Mao Zedong's death. By the 1980's, he had already brought around economic reforms in agriculture and industry. He enacted the 4 Modernizations, gaols already set by Zhou Enlai, which focused on and improved agriculture, industry, science, and defense. Food productions went up 50%. He promoted trade with foreign countries and more contact with foreign countries. He greatly improved China's economic stability by upgrading all of these topics. He also instituted the one- child-per-family rule. Quality of life improved for all, even though there was still a huge gap between classes. Later on, Deng was heavily criticized for the Tiananmen Square Massacre, but stayed in power. He died on February 19, 1997, after improving China's economy and stability.

Tiananmen Square Massacre

In 1989, there were several hundred peaceful protesters shot dead by the military. They were protesting because they wanted the government to be democratic, not communist. They refused to leave until their demands were met. Throughout the day the government warned that they would do whatever it takes to remove them. Violence was expected, but the ferocity of the attack took everybody by surprise. About several hundreds to thousands of people were killed by the military. George Bush, the U.S. president at the time, said that he deeply deplored the use of force. Margaret Thatcher said that she was shocked and appalled by the shootings. Millions of people around the world were enraged.
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