Former Red Guard Tearfully Apologizes for Cultural Revolution

Song Binbin, then and now.

Song Binbin, then and now.

Currently the most commented article of the day and week on popular Chinese web portal NetEase…

From NetEase:

Song Binbin Apologizes to the Teachers and Classmates Hurt in the Cultural Revolution, Weeps Several Times

Today, at the Female Middle School Affiliated with Beijing Normal University, Song Binbin solemnly apologized to the teachers and classmates that harmed in the Cultural Revolution. This is yet another important instance of repentance following the apology by Chen Xiaolu. Song Binbin is one of the “symbols” of student leaders in the Cultural Revolution, her apology an indicator of significance. According to reports, Song was very emotional, crying several times.

Song Binbin places a Red Guard armband around Mao Zedong in 1966 August.
1966 August 18, Mao Zedong meeting the Red Guard.

Comments from NetEase:

网易安徽省阜阳市手机网友 ip:58.243.*.*:

That human scum that used a leather belt to beat teachers to death!?

ponydrane [网易广东省广州市网友]:

Regarding her past deeds, I already earnestly read them on Wikipedia before it was blocked [in China].

liu51410 [网易福建省福州市网友]:

People always say nice things before they’re about to die.

网易广东省中山市手机网友 ip:125.92.*.*:

With this kind of person, with the deep suffering she has inflicted on the counter, with the great wounds she has inflicted on the people, even being shot dead a hundred times would not satisfy one’s anger!

122193190 [网易上海市浦东新区手机网友]:

Learn from history, may the dead rest in peace, may the living solemnly remember, may history not be repeated.

网易内蒙古网友 [T打倒五0毛反动派C]:

1966 August, reports of the Red Guards beating people to death reached Mao and he opposed the “Emergency Appeal” to curb the beatings, instructing there to be no interference. Encouraged, the Red Guards set off a Five Black Categories killing spree. In Changping county, slogans to destroy root and branch, to spare women but not men, were raised, with even infant boys just a few months old being beating to death and communes launching killing competitions. 324 people were killed in total in Daxing county between August 29th to 31st. Amongst them, the oldest was 80 years old, the youngest only 38 days, and known as the 831 Incident. In Macun, a grandparent and grandchild pair was buried alive. When the perpetrator shoveled dirt on their bodies, the little child held in [the grandparent’s] arms said: “Grandma, something is in my eyes.” The elderly woman said helplessly: “It’ll be gone shortly.”

T打倒五0毛反动派C [网易内蒙古网友]: (responding to above, adding to his own comment)

Although it has been over 30 years, every time I recall these ugly things that happened around us, I always find it difficult to restrain my hatred and sorrow. Hatred, because the perpetrators were also members of the Chinese people, and they have brought shame to the entire people [nationality/ethnicity]. What more, to this day, they have not gotten the punishment they deserve. Sorrow, because people’s lives could be so easily deprived, and because who can guarantee that the next one would not be oneself? What more, to this day, not a single perpetrator from that time has come forth to apologize or express remorse.

If we cannot punish evil, how can we talk about the stability of society; if we won’t express remorse, then there is no possibility of progress.

What perplexes me the most is the one nagging question: Are we such an ugly people [nationality/ethnicity]?

网易北京市手机网友 ip:110.172.*.*:

Should apologize, even if she too was a victim!

网易重庆市手机网友 ip:113.205.*.*:

Pretentious from beginning to end, why didn’t she do it sooner? Why feign apologizing now? If apologies were enough, why make laws at all?

网易广东省深圳市手机网友 ip:221.179.*.*:

Should be sentenced [punished].

网易河南省手机网友 ip:117.136.*.*:

Back from abroad.

Are apologies enough? Are you familiar with Song Binbin (and Chen Xiaolu)?


Written by Fauna

Fauna is a mysterious young Shanghainese girl who lives in the only place a Shanghainese person would ever want to live: Shanghai. In mid-2008, she started chinaSMACK to combine her hobby of browsing Chinese internet forums with her goal of improving her English. Through her tireless translation of popular Chinese internet news and phenomenon, her English has apparently gotten dramatically better. At least, reading and writing-wise. Unfortunately, she's still not confident enough to have written this bio, about herself, by herself.


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