Tiananmen Square

Beijing, China

Tiananmen Square


Tank Man (also known as the Unknown Protester or Unknown Rebel) is the nickname of an unidentified Chinese man who stood in front of a column of tanks leaving Tiananmen Square in Beijing on June 5, 1989, the day after the Chinese government's violent crackdown on the Tiananmen protests. As the lead tank maneuvered to pass by the man, he repeatedly shifted his position in order to obstruct the tank's attempted path around him. The incident was filmed and shared to a worldwide audience. Internationally, it is considered one of the most iconic images of all time. Inside China, the image and the accompanying events are subject to censorship.

There is no reliable information about the identity or fate of the man; the story of what happened to the tank crew is also unknown. At least one witness has stated that Tank Man was not the only person to have blocked the tanks during the protest, but Tank Man is unique in that he is the only one who was photographed and recorded on video.

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