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Photo of the Day: Tank Man

Today marks the 29th anniversary of the Tiananmen massacre

Tank man.

Tank man. (Wikimedia Commons photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Today marks the 29th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre in which thousands of civilian democracy protestors were gunned down in the streets of Beijing by Chinese troops on June 4, 1989.

The picture above was taken a day after massacre when an unidentified Chinese man stood in front of a column of tanks to block them from proceeding on Chang'an Avenue on the north edge of Tiananmen Square. As the tanks were departing the square after shots were heard, the man suddenly walked in front of the lead tank, causing the driver to halt the massive military machine.

The man then hopped on top of the tank and exchanged words with the driver. After hopping off, the tank started moving forward again, but the man again moved in front of it, causing it and the tanks behind it to halt again.

The man was later seen being whisked away by two figures dressed in blue into a nearby crowd. To this day, the man's identity and fate remain unknown, nevertheless his act represents one of the most famous nonviolent actions recorded on film.