• Germany's news in English
 

Helmut Schmidt defends Tiananmen massacre

Published: 13 Sep 2012 12:44 GMT+02:00

Schmidt told Die Zeit weekly newspaper which he publishes, that the Chinese military had been attacked with stones and Molotov cocktails before the infamous massacre.

He said the Red Cross estimate that 2,600 people were killed did not tally with that of foreign ambassadors in the city at the time.

Schmidt, who was Germany’s Social Democratic chancellor from 1974 until 1982, added that other mitigating circumstances needed to be taken into account when assessing the riots and massacre.

Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev was visiting China for the first time after a long interval, and that his Chinese counterpart Deng Xiaoping had "lost face" because Gorbachev had been forced to enter the city's "Great Hall of the People" by a back door because of the violence.

He also said that since the government had had no police force available, authorities were forced to send in the army. "And the soldiers had only learned to shoot," said Schmidt.

Schmidt praised Deng, who steered China to long-term prosperity, as the most successful communist leader in world history. He also rejected the claim that the Chinese had "sacrificed" civil rights in favour of material wealth, since there has never been a tradition of personal freedom in Chinese history.

Chinese politics could not be measured by European standards, he argued.

The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

13:45 September 13, 2012 by Onlythetruth
Right. What did you expect from Helmut? He also praised Deng as "the most successful communist leader". Nuf said, consider the source and ignore the fool.
14:13 September 13, 2012 by Englishted
@Onlythetruth

So thing he said are correct (not all agreed )

When have the Chinese ever had a free election? ,

But I think Fidel Castro is a better leader when you consider how much pressure he was put under by the U.S.A. for all his time in office.
15:11 September 13, 2012 by Neanderthal
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
16:18 September 13, 2012 by ctsummerhead27
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
16:25 September 13, 2012 by Neanderthal
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
17:19 September 13, 2012 by neunElf
There is no fool like an old fool!
17:42 September 13, 2012 by Neanderthal
The local ,objective media !

Why did you delete my post? Because I said a truth about Germany !

Ok.Germany is the greatest country ,the land for the greatest people ever, greatest scientists ever from Isaac Newton to Karl Marx , Archimedes to Avicenna , Socrates to Plato , Hugo to Venter

bla bla bla bla bla
18:23 September 13, 2012 by Englishted
14:13 September 13, 2012 by Englishted

@Onlythetruth

Some things he said are correct (not all agreed )

When have the Chinese ever had a free election? ,

But I think Fidel Castro is a better leader when you consider how much
18:41 September 13, 2012 by Wise Up!
The Left has always had a love affair with Dictators. They long for absolute power, which is there ultimate goal.
18:58 September 13, 2012 by Kennneth Ingle
This seems to be a tragic mental condition among SPD oldies. Former chancellor G. Schroeder also claims his friend Putin is a true democrat.
19:07 September 13, 2012 by christmascorner
One must take into consideration his far left commie view on all subjects. Check out the 1930 years.
01:27 September 14, 2012 by gorongoza
Why can`t people like the ex-chancellor Helmut Schmidt leave the affected Chinese to say their views on this subject?

Its people like Herr Schmidt who do down the Germans. He can not be found talking like this - as though he is just another man from the streets !

May be these are signs of senile decay - one may never know.
03:34 September 14, 2012 by marimay
He is just a Nazi. Like the Pope.
23:09 September 15, 2012 by rwk
Not as bad as Schroeder.
11:00 September 16, 2012 by strahlungsamt
Finally someone gives the Chinese credit for Tiannamen.

All the other ex-socialist countries had peaceful demonstrations, their commie regimes collapsed and the Americans and their neoliberal stooges a##raped them ever since. Only Russia has improved itself since Putin stepped up and threw the American stooges into prison where hopefully they'll rot for the rest of their days.

The Chinese broke up their demo at the first sign of unrest and nobody has f***ed with them since. Hell, they even own the entire US treasury now and their worst growth levels, the West would kill for.
Today's headlines
Teachers to strike nationwide from Monday
Photo: DPA

Teachers to strike nationwide from Monday

Teachers all over the country are expected to stike starting Monday, German education trade union GEW said, after negotiations with the wage commission of the federal states (TdL) failed to achieve results. READ  

EU court deals blow to US Iraq objector's hopes
Andre Shepherd at the European Court of Justice in June 2014. Photo: DPA

EU court deals blow to US Iraq objector's hopes

American soldier Andre Shepherd, who applied for asylum in Germany as a conscientious objector against the war in Iraq after going AWOL from his unit, saw a judgement by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) go against him on Thursday. READ  

Intersex person sues clinic for unncessary op
Photo: DPA

Intersex person sues clinic for unncessary op

Intersex person Michaela Raab is suing doctors in a Nuremberg court, who she said operated on her genitals and put her through female hormone therapy without having told her she was genetically a man. READ  

Greece bailout
Greece bailout passes with massive majority
Wolfgang Schäuble addressing the Bundestag on Friday. Photo: DPA

Greece bailout passes with massive majority

UPDATE:German MPs voted 542-32 in favour of extending Greece's bailout programme on Friday. READ  

German soars into ski jump top spot
Photo: DPA

German soars into ski jump top spot

Germany is a "Weltmeister" again, this time in ski-jumping. Severin Freund's 134-metre vertical jumps, and new world distance record of nearly 136 metres, ended the nearly decade-and-a-half wait for German ski jump fans starved for gold. READ  

Muslim Council says Jewish fears 'justified'
Muslims at prayer in Frankfurt's Abubakr Mosque. Photo: DPA

Muslim Council says Jewish fears 'justified'

After the president of the Central Council of Jews warned against anti-Semitism in Muslim areas of German cities, his Muslim opposite number agreed that 'these fears are justified”. READ  

Consumer rights office slams Facebook
Photo: DPA

Consumer rights office slams Facebook

The Federation of Consumer Protection Offices (vzbv) has warned Facebook over legal breaches in its terms and conditions, saying that its claim on the homepage that “Facebook is free and always will be” is misleading. READ  

Spoof hails Varoufakis: puts 'hell' in 'Hellenica'
Yanis Varoufakis, Greece's "Minister of Awesome". Photo: DPA

Spoof hails Varoufakis: puts 'hell' in 'Hellenica'

An offering that rehabilitates the much-maligned German sense of humour is rocking the internet with a searing spoof metal tribute to Greece's formidable new finance minister Yanis Varoufakis, filled with painful moments of self-mockery. READ  

This Week in History
Kafka's Metamorphosis: 100 years of perplexity
Franz Kafka. Photo: DPA

Kafka's Metamorphosis: 100 years of perplexity

100 years ago, Franz Kafka published The Metamorphosis, now seen as one of the most significant works of 20th century German literature. The Local speaks to the academic who has reinterpreted it for a modern audience. READ  

Nurse jailed for life for serial patient murders
Niels H. in court. The five murder counts against the former nurse may just be the start. Photo: DPA

Nurse jailed for life for serial patient murders

A male nurse who injected patients with overdoses of heart medication for the thrill of resuscitating them was on Thursday sentenced to life imprisonment on five counts of murder. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Features
Kafka: puzzling translators 100 years on
Business & Money
France or Germany: Which country really is the best country to work in?
Photo: Police
Rhineland
Student driver crashes tank into family garden.
Photo: DPA
Politics
There was a notable absence at the Anti-Semitism Commission
Sponsored Article
Tourist or lifer: what sort of expat are you?
National
How Dresden bombing still divides Germany, 70 years on
Sponsored Article
Are you an American expat? How to face FATCA
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Take a cute break with this gallery of baby animals
International
What's keeping UK expats from voting?
Photo: DPA
National
Terror alert at a new high. Should you be worried?
Gallery
The best regional foods TTIP opponents want to protect
Photo: DPA
Features
All you ever needed to know about Pegida
Photo: Shutterstock
Culture
This cosplayer did not think his plan through
National
Europe in statistics - from Spain to Sweden
Gallery
Top 12 German idioms
Culture
10 top tips for partying in Germany
Photo: DPA
Technology
What does the Chancellor see as the future of the internet?
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,430
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd