A Forced Eviction in Chongqing

The major impact of the Internet is said to be the empowerment of the masses.  Every person with an Internet connection can become a civilian reporter.  But the story is not that straightforward, because if ten million people want to get heard at the same time, you can bet that no one gets a large audience.  So it is a battle to get one's very important message through the field of background noise.  A lot therefore depends on the presentation of the message -- it should be easy to digest and it should be compelling that a reader will forward it to others.  Perhaps the easiest way to do this is with a set of photos, as is the case here.

Here is the brief background, and the photographs will tell you about everything else.

(6Park)  In Chongqing, three families had lived in their houses for 20 years.  The Chongqing City Industrial and Trade Cargo Transportation Company wants them to move off the land.  The company refused to offer any compensation on the grounds that the land was theirs to begin with and these families were squatting illegally.  However, the families have land use permits.  So the matter was subject to dispute.

At 8am on June 26, 2005, without any warning, about 20 thugs showed up.  They broke down the doors and windows, and entered the houses.  They tied up the people (including women, children and elderly people), dragged them away in their cars, drove off and left the people in the middle of nowhere.  The thugs also stole consumer electronics, beds, furniture and everything else.  What they could not take away, they destroyed while pulling down the roof and putting holes through the walls.

[Note: The original text is longer, but it is suspect in some places.  That is why only a brief sketch is presented here.]

The Place





The People