Wang Dan was the main leader of the Tiananmen Square protests for democracy back in June 4, 1989. These were the same protests that turned into the Tiananmen Square massacre, where thousands of innocent peaceful protesters (mostly students yearning for democracy in China) were murdered by the Chinese government.
To this day, the Chinese government censors any mentions of Tiananmen on the internet using its Firewall. Chinese dissidents have to be creative and talk in code when talking about Tiananmen. Since it happened on June 4 (or 6/4), sometimes the Massacre is referred to as 8 x 8, to elude internet scrubbers.
For his role as principal organizer, Wang was jailed for 6 years, before being exiled to the United States. For 25 years, he has not seen his parents and family (blocked by the Chinese government), but he views this the price of fighting for democracy, and he has stated that he has “no regrets.”
For these reasons, Americans better listen when Wang identifies a candidate as being Communistic in nature. And that is exactly what Wang did in a new Time article:
In China, because of the Communist Party’s omissions from history books and mounting online censorship, people—young ones, especially—may have no idea about the idealism and hopes of the students at Tiananmen. They may know nothing of the bloodshed that was unleashed on June 4, 1989. Americans know, however. I want to ask Mr. Trump: How can you say these things about Tiananmen? As a long-time resident of the United States, I am deeply worried about a great country’s future.
Maybe Mr. Trump will spin a defense for himself. But his description of the student movement as a “riot” was very clear. There is no room for misunderstanding on this point. Yet I can say with confidence that it is only Chinese Communist Party officials who will agree with him. So, I will tell Mr. Trump this: “Congratulations, you are already qualified to become a member of the Communist Party of China.”
Watch this video to get a sense of what happened in China due to authoritarian power (the same type of power that Trump thought was a model to call out as an example):