There is something about controlling information and censoring any criticism that can blind you to irony. That seems to be the problem this week when a Chinese spokesperson objected that a statement by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre as a violation of international law. So massacring thousands is a purely domestic matter but criticizing it is an international law violation.
Pompeo called on China to disclose the full death toll from the suppression of the 1989 student-led protests. There still is no official count on the number of dead. What really was likely to tick off the Chinese was Pompeo’s praise for the “heroic protest movement” that ended when “the Chinese Communist Party leadership sent tanks into Tiananmen Square to violently repress peaceful demonstrations calling for democracy, human rights, and an end to rampant corruption.”
The Associated Press reported the response complaining that the message “grossly intervenes” in domestic Chinese affairs and characterized Pompeo’s comments as “an affront to the Chinese people and a serious violation of international law.”
The statement truly fits within the twisted logic of the Communist regime where communist leaders and their families live like princes and citizens are rated according to their citizen scores. Thus, it is the public discussion of the massacre and not the massacre itself that is the outrage for the Chinese.