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Monument to The Heroes of The Revolution
(人民英雄纪念碑 - Renmin Yingxiang Jinian Bei)
at TiananMen Square
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Overview of TiananMen Square to the East from the Steps of the Great Hall of the Peoples. The Monument o/t Heroes o/t Revolution is clearly visible in the center.
Welcome to the China Report's digital introduction to the Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution (Renmin Yingxiang Jinian Bei) at the Square of Heavenly Peace (Tiananmen Square) in Beijing.
This monument serves as the National Monument in remembrance China's '100 years of humiliation', which, in the doctrine of today's Communist Party and National Leadership, was a struggle for social revolution and independence from foreign powers and intervention. The Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution commemorates all who gave their life for the better development of a new China, since the first Opium War with Britain (1839 AD - 1842 AD) to the establishment of The New China (Xinhua) in the shape of The Peoples Republic of China in 1949. As such its is regarded as the central
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Monument to the Heroes o/t Revolution and Tiananmen Square, how to Get There :
National Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution (1834 AD - 1949 AD) short Introduction :
Architecture and Details of the National Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution :
History of the National Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution at Tiananmen Square :
The order for the creation of a National Monument to the revolutionary dead originates from the first plenary session of The Chinese Peoples Consultative Conference (CPCC) which was held on November 30 of 1949 AD. On the same day, in the afternoon, Mao Zedong and other top Leaders of the new China among whom Zhou Enlai laid the first and corner-stone for the Monument to be built in Tiananmen Square. Yet, it would be nearly 10 years before the Monument finally took shape. Part of the reason for the delay can be found in the giant overhaul that was taking place, enlarging the Square of Heavenly Peace and widening the Avenue of Eternal peace (Chang An Jie) during the
Festival, Tomb Sweeping Day at the end of Februari, emotions ran high and boiled over. On April the 5Th huge crowds
The Monument is located almost in the center of the Square of Heavenly Peace (Tiananmen Square) in Beijing. The Square itself is situated just south of the Palace Museum (Forbidden City) and can be considered to be at the exact geographical center of the entire city. It is nearly impossible to miss Tiananmen Square when in Beijing. It is the largest square in the world entire.
For more information, go to: 'Tiananmen Square (1) Introduction & Menu' and or go the Beijing Maps Menu (Index) for location details and easy navigation throughout the City.
The Square of Heavenly Peace can be reached by Subway/Metro, by Bus and on foot. Taxi's are not allowed to stop, park or drop off passengers at the Square proper. The Square is accessible for wheelchairs.
The Monument o/t Heroes o/t Revolution at Tiananmen Square, with the Museum of the Revolution and Chinese History, now redubbed China National Museum, as a background. Although massive, the monument is dwarfed by the surrounding space and gargantuan buildings.
Monument on the giant Square of Heavenly Peace -a monument all by itself- more sacred and central to the People than any of the other Tiananmen Square landmarks such as the impressive red Gate of Heavenly Peace (Tian An Men) where Mao Zedong declared a new China in October of 1949 AD, the Great Hall of the Peoples (Renmin Dahui Tang) - heart of the so-called Peoples Democracy-, or even the Mausoleum of Chairman Mao Zedong (Mao Zhuxi Jinian Tang) - the last resting place of the Great visionary Leader and cruel Dictator- himself. The Monument is so sacred to the Nation that it is guarded around the clock by a full squad of ceremonial guards. No one is allowed near, and entrance, which is rarely granted, is only given after written application.
Altogether, when visiting the Square of Heavenly
Peace one must have a look at the giant Marble Pillar, if only because it carries inscriptions by both Zhou Enlai and Mao Zedong. Bring your binocculars in case you would like to have a detailed look at the revolutionary battle scenes which decorate the monument on all four sides.
Visitors to the Square of Heavenly Peace admire the Monument and its inscriptions on a sunny day in November 2003. In the background roofs of the Palace Museum.
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The architecture of the National Revolutionary Martyrs Monument is essentially solemn, but clearly constructed to impress and awe, in line with the rest of the architecture of the surrounding square, with which it combines and joins into what is essentially a massive propaganda declaration. Tiananmen Square is the National Political Center filled with reminders of the Revolution, all together declaring the great progress made under the Leadership of Chinas (still) ruling Communist Party.

The Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution (Renmin
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Yingxiang Jinian Bei) stands almost central at Tiananmen Square as its most pivotal part. As such it was originally constructed to face the Gate of Heavenly Peace (TiananMen) from which the Revolution was declared. Constructed
Panoramic View of the Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution surrounded by the other Square of Heavenly Peace landmarks such as the Great Hall of the Peoples on the left and the Gate of Heavenly Peace, entrance to the former Imperial Palace on the right in the North.
originally in 1958 AD and officially dedicated for the occasion of the 10 year anniversary of the Communist Revolution in China, today it stands in between of the Gate of Heavenly Peace in the North and the later added Mao Zedong Mausoleum, which was the last Monument to be added to Tiananmen Square in 1976/77, in the south.
On the East Flank stands the Great Hall of the Peoples, and on the West Flank the China National Museum (formerly the propaganda showcase Museum o/t Revolution and the Museum of Chinese History). The nearest other Monument on the Square is the China National Flag stand, standing just to the North-East, where each morning at the dawn of light the Chinese National Flag is raised in honor of the Revolution, the Nation and the fallen heroes who made it possible.
Angled view of Tiananmen Square showing the Monument to the Heroes in relation to the Mao Zedong Memorial Mausoleum and the Shenyangmen and Qianmen Gates at the south side of the huge square (Photo: 2002).
The Monument to the Heroes as it was intended; facing the Revolutionary and red gate of Tiananmen, flanked by banners and slogans and with Mao Zedongs legacy enshrined in stone and flesh as a backdrop (Photo: 2002).
Seemingly unproposing in scale, solemn amidst the bustling crowds of a usual afternoon,  and surrounded by the vast open space of the huge square of Heavenly Peace the monument of the Heroes itself is dwarfed by its surroundings and nearby monuments. Nevertheless, the monument measures a total of 38 meters high. It consists of a gray Qingdao marble platform atop of which stand a 33 meter gray and square obelisk and, together with its established guard perimeter covers an area of 3000 square meters in total.
The Bas relief on the base of the column covers all four sides, and importantly, depicts a series of several revolutionary struggles, as mentioned covering the episode from the first opium war and China's perceived humiliation at Foreign hands, to the the establishment of a new and non-feudal China in the shape of the (communist) Peoples Republic.
There are 8 bas relief's in total, two of each dealing with one historical event.

The first shows a scene from the Opium War, when the Chinese Governor in what is
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now Guangdong Province took action against illegal and unwanted imports of  Opium, by confiscating the lot and destroying it by burning. These were the opening scenes of what would become a lengthy, bloody and
The second bas relief on the Monument base relates to the so called village uprising which occurred in 1851 AD as part of the Taiping Rebellion and near Revolution. Th relief celebrates the Christina-thought based Heavenly Kingdom (Tai Ping) movement led by Hong Xiuquan, a former teacher, who's movement swept China and established a first revolutionary Capital in the City of Nanjing in Jiangsu Province. Of course, the movement is noted to have been outright anti-imperialist and proclaimed anti-feudal, while the Christian aspect of its fundamentals is omitted.

The third bas relief commemorates the so called Wuchang Uprising or the 1911 AD Revolution that finally overthrew the ailing Qing Dynasty (1644 AD - 1911 AD), although the child Emperor Pu Yi would linger inside his Palace across from the Monument Pillar awaiting his chance for quite a few more years.
The Wuchang Uprising did not occur in Beijing, but occurred late in the evening of November the 10Th of 1911 AD, when rebellious citizens confronted the Governors Office building of both Hubei and Hunan Provinces in Wuhan. Subsequently the rebels took broke through the perimeter, took down the Imperial Flag of the Qing Dynasty and set about destroying the defenses of the Governors Mansion, taking control of affairs in Wuhan.
In the aftermath of this affair the Qing Dynasty Emperor Hsuen Tung (Pu Yi) was forced to abdicate, confronting a rebellious army General (Yuan Shi Kai) and impossible odds. Later that year the First Republic of China was declared with popular revolutionary scholar Sun Yat-Sen as nominal head. The revolution was short-lived, and after an attempt to reestablish Feudal Rule, by now dubbed Traitor General Yuan Shi-Kai the nation fragmented and descended into a situation of warlordism. Until 1928 the larger part of the Nation would find itself under regional military styled rule.

The Fourth Bas relief on the base of the Martyrs column celebrates and commemorates the May the 4Th Movement, in which Chinese citizens for the first time arose against their Government, outraged by the awarding of the previously German occupied Shandong colonies to Japan by the World League of Nations. This national indignation, which proved the insubordinate nature of China's role in the International World, led to the first student movement which in turn lay the foundations for revolutionary thought at Beijing University and other institutes, among things leading to the later establishment of the Communist Party of China (under full organizational support, finance and leadership of the Soviet Union. It was a blatant violation of the Russian promise not to intervene in Chinese National affairs). The May the 4th Movement started in Beijing and is considered the mother of al  Chinese revolutionary parties in the 20Th century.
The Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution and the Great Hall of the Peoples.
The front (North) face of the Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution, carrying a caligraphy inscription by Mao Zedong.
The Fifth Bas Relief is one to display and remember the May the 30Th Movement, which occurred on that day of 1925 AD in the large coastal harbor city of Shanghai. In 1919 AD, this city had seen the founding meeting of the Chinese Communist Party, entirely arranged by secret agents of the Soviet Union and at the time Shanghai was considered the richest and most modern city in the country. It was nothing less than Chinas main economic engine, the home of various important industries and large crowds of impoverished, malnourished, and abused industrial workers. In essence, the bas relief displays the scenes of a first communist uprising and attempt to take control of a major population center. Although the deeds were heroic, what is omitted is that even the Chinese Communists themselves did not think they
South face of the Monument to the Heroes o/t Revolution with inscription by Long March veteran and later Premier of China, Zhou Enlai.
The uninscribed west face of the Monument facing the Great Hall of the Peoples.
Apart from the bas relief there are only a few decorations on the the memorial column.  The design is simple, and is completed by two inscriptions. An inscription on the North Face of the monument pillar, opposing the rostrum of the Gate of Heavenly Peace (Tiananmen) reads in golden letters "The Peoples Heroes are Immortal" (it is also translated as "Eternal Glory to the peoples Heroes!"). The inscription is a calligraphy done by none other than Mao Zedong himself, and apart for the presence of his body enshrined in the Mausoleum and his portrait on the Gate of Heavenly Peace, is the main imprint or stamp that  Mao Zedong left in this holy sanctuary of Chinese communist propaganda. The
The Martyrs Monument facing in Tiananmen Square seen with against the backdrop of the China National Museum, formerly Museum o/t Revolution and of Chinese History.
second inscription can be found on the opposing side, where an inscription by first hour revolutionary veteran and later internationally famous Prime Minister Zhou Enlai. The eulogy to the fallen heroes goes as follows: "Eternal Glory to the peoples Heroes, who laid down
their lives in the War of Liberation in the past three years, and the Peoples Revolution in the past three decades! Eternal Glory to the peoples heroes who laid down their lives in the struggle against Foreign and domestic enemies, for National independence and for the peoples freedom and happiness from 1840 onward".
traffic in the city. To complicate matters the construction of a metro / subway system, the main lines of which were to run through Tiananmen Square, was also in the planning. It was the largest overhaul of the former Imperial Capital in centuries, which would only be surpassed much later by the city development spawned by the choice of Beijing as the host of the 2008 Olympic Games.

The further construction of the Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution began in 1958, and the Monument was completed after 10 months in 1959 AD, in time for the 10 year anniversary of the Chinese Communist revolution. It was first opened on July the first of 1959 AD.

Since its erection in the 1958/59, the Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution has become a rallying Totem for the public during mass un-organized protest against Government Policies and those in Government at several occasions. The first noteworthy mass protest occurred at some time after the death of Premier Zhou Enlai. Zhou died in January 1976, but neglection of official mourning services for this popular national politician and international public figure led to widespread public resentment. During the onfollowing Qing Ming
first years of the 1950s.  At  that same time the Ming Dynasty era City Walls were torn down to make way for a convenient (first) ring road for the non-existing
terrible struggle for Chinese national emancipation, and a wholesale modernisation of
the nation, its people and their thinking. If anything, this is the true prize found in the lenghty suffering of that period.
The Hoeroes Monument pillar seen atop its platform and cordonned of by an additional security perimeter on the right far side of the platform one uniformed ceremonial guard is visible.
turned out in defiance of official orders NOT to mourn the Dead Zhou Enlai. The People, long supressed under the hard heel of Mao Zedong and his willing security apparatus and Military, the people were no longer to be controlled. It was the beginning of the end for Mao Zedong, who thereafter could only care paranoically for his personal safety, and plea not to murder him or otherwise dispose of him.

Much later in 1989, during the now infamous student protest, the Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution once more served as a rallying point. At this time, the monument was decorated with protest banners, students climbed the several ridges lining the monument and its white marble platform was used as a
Images of Dr. Sun Yat-Sen, hailed as the father of the Revolution and the first president of a modern China as displayed near the Martyrs Monument in November 2005 AD. In reality Dr. Sun was a nationalist and not a Communist. His three guiding principles and basic rules for an ideal Democratic China have been scrapped and/or shelved indefintely. His ideals were shamelessly abused to justify one party rule, which was not Dr. Sun✧s intended plan as can be clearly deduced from his legacies.
Large size portrait of Dr. Sun Yat-Sen as displayed near the Martyrs Monument in November 2005 AD.
were ready to start a true Revolution, as their was little base for their ideals among the city working class. Nevertheless, the staged coup attempt went through largely because of hard pressure from Arch Dictator Stalin and his advisors, who were eager to establish a base within China and who had essentially been footing the bill for all Communist operations in China. The result was a useless bloodbath, rather than a real popular uprising. The movement never had any chance but is still remembered due to the inflexibility of Communist Doctrine on Revolutionary affairs.

The number six bas relief is -indirectly for political correctness- dedicated to what has become known as the Northern Expeditions, another crucial episode in which an officially united but mutually hostile and suspicious Kuomintang and Communist forces combined in a Military Drive to get rid of the Nations warlords and once more unite the Chinese Nation under a true National Government. Although the set up was largely successful in uniting several parts of the Nation under Kuomintang control, this military campaign also catapulted Chiang Kai Chek into the limelight and onto the seat of power, after which he immediately turned upon his political adversaries. On April 12Th a wholesale slaughter of Chinese Communist in the strategically important coastal cities fragmented and largely neutralized the Chinese Communist party, once more plunging the nation into turmoil, war and political oppression and violence. The Sixth bas relief commemorates the fallen heroes who died in the Nanchang Uprising of August the 1st of 1927, at the hands of the treacherous Kuomintang party and its now strong military wing. As the official story goes, Chinese Communist party members fired the first shot at Kuomintang troops in this uprising, their cause being nothing less than the saving of the National Revolution for all of the Chinese Peoples. It was that very day that (officially) the Chinese Communist Party took the lead in the National struggle for political, spiritual and bodily salvation.
What is omitted from this official line is the fact that the so-called Nanchang Uprising was a botched operation in which the City of Nanchang did not fall to the communist onslaught as envisioned by the Central Party leadership (i.e. Shanghai). What makes matters even worse is that the Nanchang Uprising was really part of of a session of political shadow boxing, in which Mao Zedong asked for and accepted the command of the rising troops, after which he subsequently completely sabotaged the revolt attempt in order to preserve the army assigned to him for largely personal use. In all honesty, the Nanchang Uprising never really materialized, and it was a prelude to the lengthy ego-trip which took Mao Zedong to National leadership and to the devastation of an entire nation and several peoples.
The Nanchang Uprising was in fact a semi-hidden coup attempt of Mao Zedong in which he rebelled against the line of Shanghai and Moscow. In the event Nanchang, the Capital of Jiangxi Province, was never really threatened but significantly Mao managed to hijack the powerful Peng Dehuai guerilla group, the main force within communist ranks. As the most unfortunate result of this faked uprising, Mao Zedong managed to contribute strongly to the death of his second and one year estranged wife, Kaihui, who lived with his children in the suburbs of the city. Making no attempt to rescue her, Mao essentially abandoned her to her vengeful executioners. She was found, tormented and killed shortly afterward.
Almost naturally in China, this non-official but historically accepted version of the Nanchang Uprising tale is not endorsed at the Square. Nor anywhere else for that matter.

Another incorrect fact derived from the supposed Nanchang Uprising was the naming of August the 1st of 1927 as the birthday of the Peoples Liberation Army. Since, the troops in the initial uprising were stirred and mobilized by Zhou Enlai, the story of the Nanchang Uprising was further blown out of proportion by the claim that this was the first true Communist Army arising against the Kuomintang in a struggle for National Salvation. A large part of the legacy of Zhou Enlai was later built on the incorrect idea that he led a grandiose and essentially successful rebellious army.
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The Northern expeditions and ensuing power struggle set the stage for Civil War between the Communist Guerillas and the Kuomintang National Army in what would become a struggle of David and Goliath. Surprisingly,
The Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution on a morning after severe snowfall in November of 2003.
David would come out as the final victor.

The Seventh bas relief on the Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution in Tiananmen Square is one remembering the bloody war and struggle against Japanese invasion and occupation, which officially was one of the issues in which the Communist Party claimed to differ from the Kuomintang party. Chiang Kai Chek and his Kuomintang followed a (realistic) policy of appeasement it was said, whereas the Communist were idealistic and all for an open and direct war against Japan uniting all Chinese under one anti-Japanese and anti-Imperialist Banner. The Communists, so they emphatically claimed, went North on their Long March in order to do battle with the Japanese and defend China. A one time successful encounter led by General Lin Biao, killing Japanese Troops inside the narrow Pingxing Great Wall Pass in North Shanxi Province was blown up into a propaganda story, which largely results in the faked legacy that is proclaimed today.
In reality, the large scale anti-Japanese offensive never happened. Not only did the Communists hardly attack any Japanese Troops, in 1943, '44 and '45 they even cooperated with Japanese Forces, while they were focusing on their main goal; the winning of territory and preparations for an all out offensive against the fellow Chinese of the Kuomintang. In this way, the Monument to the Heroes confirms the fact that the struggle against japan was merely a minor issue and concern to Mao Zedong and the Communist Party of China in the 1940's.

The Eighth and last bas relief on the base of the Monument of the Heroes of the Revolution depicts what Mao Zedong and thus today's Communist Party regarded as the final turning event of what essentially was a bloody and atrocious 20 year civil war that touched nearly the entire country. In the scene shown Communist Forces are crossing the mighty Yangtze in 1949, thus penetrating into the South of the nation and dealing a final death blow to the rule of Generalissimo Chiang Kai Chek and his by that time corrupt, fascistoid and dysfunctional Kuomintang party. The Kuomintang was forced off the mainland to retreat to Taiwan Island, which remains independent of the Peoples Republic until this very day.
The rest of China was swallowed up by the mighty communist machine, which mobilized all resources and manpower for the destruction of any opposition. China was 'liberated' by the Communist Party and its army in 1949 AD. The fact that in most parts of China their entrance was not welcomed by the majority of the public who had at least some idea of the atrocious legacy of the Leadership in the previous decades, and that thus there the 'liberation' was hardly a popular affair, is once more omitted from official narratives.
Thus summed up in eight impressive relief's is the story of China's struggle for a new National identity and unity of its peoples.
             You Tube Video: Rare Footage of the Monument to the Heroes o/t revolution immediatly after the PLA swept the Tiananmen Square in its bloody June 4Th, 1989 crackdown + More images of the City.
Security has always been a priority at Tiananmen Square, however since the 1989 student protest security measures have been ever tighter in an attempt to prevent public protests. The entire square is rigged with TV Cameras, uniformed and plain clothes officers patrol continuously.
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A nearly abandonned square and busses parked at the base of the Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution in advance of the 2002, 16Th National Congress of the Peoples Republic of China (Shiliu Da) (十六大) .
podium for student speakers and joining workers and citizens.

Designed by Liang Sicheng.
National Monument to the Heroes of the Revolution at Tiananmen Square visitors regulations :
1) The Monument of the Peoples Heroes is a National historical relic of the Chinese Revolution. Please be conscious to maintain its solemnity, grandeur and neatness.
2) Visitors may pay their respects to the Monument to the Peoples Heroes
outside (of) the bed platform. No entrance is allowed without approval.
3) It is strictly prohibited to throw, scribble, score and put other articles on the Monument of the Peoples Heroes.
4) It is strictly forbidden to spit, scatter chewing gum, cigarette ash, waste paper, skins or seeds of melons and fruits and other cast off, and to dump sewage or dirt.
5) Approval must be obtained from the management committee before  holding a commemorative activity at the Monument.
6) Approval must be obtained from the management committee before laying (a) wreath, or basket of flowers at the Monument.
7) Approval must be obtained from the management committee before making video recording or taking photograph(s).
8) All visitors must observe the mentioned above and obey this direction and management of the
One of the notice boards giving information and instruction for behavior at the Monument as wel as regulations for visiting and mourning.
personnel on duty and working staff conscientiously.

The listing of rules and regulations is signed by the Tian An Men place (square) management committee, a part of the Beijing Peoples Government, but no address, telephone number of other means to contact this committe is given.
View of Tiananmen Square from the steps of the China National Museum on the Squares eastern flank; from left to right - Mao Zedong Mausoleum, Bank of China, Monument to the Heroes o/t Revolution and the Great Hall o/t Peoples as background.
According to various sources and as not so clearly inscribed on sign post pladed around the Monument the conduct of
The above described strict rules have been in force since at least 1999 AD and apply to conduct within the vicinity of the Monument and in principle not the larger square. In particular, climbing the monument beyond the protective barrier without prior approval is prohibited, as is photography and filming. Those intending to lay wreaths at the monument must apply at least five days in advance.

Since 1980, it has been customary for visiting foreign dignitaries, especially from countries with historical alliances with the People's Republic of China such as former Soviet Union states and Cuba, to lay wreaths at the Monument when visiting Beijing. Certain domestic groups, such as police and military units, traditionally also sometimes lay wreaths at the Monument. One specific such day is the August the 1st, which is traditionally celebrated as the day of the establishment of Peoples Liberation Army (P.L.A.) of The Peoples Republic of China. As depicted on one of the reliefs on the Monument, the PLA is held to have been first established during the so called Nanchang Uprising of 1927.

As described in the history of The Monument of the Peoples Heroes, aside from officially sanctioned commemoration, the Monument Pillar has also been the centre of large-scale mourning activities that later developed into protest and unrest.  It is mainly for this reason that the rules and regulations for mourning and other services at the Monument have been established. Recent threats of public protests by Falun Gong followers, Lone Wolf
Long distance shot of the Monument o/t Peoples Heroes from the steps of the China National Museum on the East Flank of Tiananmen Square (Photo: 2002)
commemoration activities at the Monument to the People's Heroes is regulated by the Major Events Administration Office of the Tiananmen Area Administrative Committee.
protestors and possible terrorist attacks have only served to increase security at Tiananmen Square and the Monument Pillar.
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