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May and June are volatile months in Chinese history.  

Ninety-seven years ago on May 4, some 5,000 students took to the streets of Beijing and trashed the houses of officials they despised in an attempt to protest foreign bullying, causing Chinese diplomats to refuse signing the Treaty of Versailles as the allies failed to return Shandong Province to China.  The incident is known as the May Fourth Movement.

Fifty years ago on May 16, the Communist Party announced the start of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution followed by a decade of mass brainwashing, torture and chaos that left millions of Chinese dead.  So ubiquitous was the effect of this revolution, one would be hard pressed to find someone in China today who was not touched in some way by it.

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