This article was first published in January 2011.

( The Minghui website published a reader's letter on January 4, 2007, entitled, "My Awakening and Change." It read, "I'm employed at a transportation company. Right after I was hired, a colleague talked to me about the facts of Falun Gong, saying that the TV reports on Falun Gong were fake, that the so-called 'Tiananmen Self-immolation Incident' was a staged TV program. I found his analysis reasonable. I had been to Tiananmen Square several times before and had never seen the patrolling officers carry fire extinguishers. How could the police have responded with several fire extinguishers within the space of a minute? Not only that, what were the chances that the CCTV reporters would have been there just when the incident occurred? On top of that, the moment the flames engulfed the self-immolators, the camera was right there and was able to film the events in such detail. It was too much of a coincidence! It was all a lie to deceive the public! I secretly observed several Falun Gong practitioners in my company and found them to be excellent; they were good at whatever they did. What awakened me fully was when the secretaries and leaders of the company said to a practitioner, 'If you do anything else, whether it is gambling or prostitution, we don't care. But if you practice Falun Gong, we have to deal with you.'"

Over the past ten years, countless numbers of people have had experiences similar to this Chinese reader. In order to discredit Falun Gong, the CCP has fabricated lies targeting the minds of the modern Chinese people and making use of modern media's high degree of coverage and rapid transmission. It is indeed not an easy job to dispel each and every lie. But once people understand that the staged "self-immolation" was a hoax, they will understand the CCP's sinister nature, and other lies will collapse on their own.

The so-called "self-immolation incident" took place in January 2001, ten years ago. Eighteen months had passed since the then communist head Jiang launched the persecution of Falun Gong in July 1999, when he claimed he would "eradicate" Falun Gong in three months. At the same time, more and more people, from the average person to the grassroots police, particularly those who had had opportunities to have personal contact with Falun Gong practitioners, were tiring of and disgusted with the campaign to persecute people in the new century. During the course of 18 months, Falun Gong practitioners had not retreated despite prison and forced labor camp terms, torture, and even death threats. Over and over they went to Tiananmen Square to do the exercises, unfold banners, and shout positive messages about Falun Gong to express their opposition to the persecution. Renowned journalist Ethan Gutmann published a long investigative report entitled "Into Thin Airwaves" on December 6, 2010, in The Weekly Standard. He pointed out: "From 2000 to 2001, practitioners—perhaps 150,000 or more—went to Tiananmen Square to protest the ban on Falun Gong."

The CCP seemed unable to suppress Falun Gong, and there were too many practitioners to seize them all. If there were a self-immolation “incident” on Tiananmen Square, they could put the blame on Falun Gong and rekindle people's hatred toward them. It seemed a "clever ploy" to resolve the dilemma.

The CCP did not expect that the many inconsistencies and inaccuracies in the "self-immolation incident" would be noticed. People inside China and the Western media were skeptical from the very beginning. For example, as the previous reader mentioned, the CCTV program showed everything clearly, from both far away and close-up, and even Wang Jindong's shouting of slogans could be heard clearly. Nearby surveillance cameras on the square could not have achieved this. To explain how the regime could videotape the incident in such detail in such a short time if it was not a staged event, the CCP later lied, saying that that video was taken from videotape confiscated from CNN. But Eason Jordan, CNN’s chief news executive, said, "A producer and cameraman witnessed the self-immolations because they were making a routine check of the square for Falun Gong protests on the day before the Chinese New Year, which was marked by protests a year ago. The footage used in the Chinese television reports could not have come from CNN videotape because the CNN cameraman was arrested almost immediately after the incident began.” (Washington Post: “China May Charge Foreign Reporters Over Tiananmen Burning,” by Philip P. Pan on Feb. 9, 2001, [Dow Jones Publications Library])

Many Chinese people who keep a cool head also found loopholes in the staged "self-immolation incident." For example, a reader's letter to the Minghui website on March 16, 2003, stated, "The CCTV made a self-immolation film just for us ordinary citizens. Yesterday, when I was cooking, a bit of hot oil splashed on my arm; it hurt so much that I leaped up. It suddenly reminded me of the scene of Wang Jindong on the TV program who set himself on fire.... He was so severely burned all over. If it was true, Wang Jindong would have jumped up and run at Tiananmen Square. How come he just sat there, motionless, waiting for the policeman to put a fire-extinguishing blanket on him? And the blanket was not put on him until he had finished shouting to the camera. Stop trying to fool me! CCTV made that film for us ordinary citizens!"

The reader's analysis was reasonable. One will spontaneously twitch and even jump after being burned. It is an instinctual, protective response that the mind cannot override. That is to say, one could not endure it, even if one wanted to.

In the self-immolation footage produced by the CCTV program Focal Point Interview, actor Wang Jindong had a plastic soda bottle containing gasoline between his legs. The bottle was not damaged in the fire. A policeman held a fire-extinguishing blanket as he walked behind Wang Jindong but did not put it on him until he finished speaking to the camera.

During the past ten years, thousands of Falun Gong truth clarification material production sites have been set up in China to print materials and burn DVDs that explain the truth. One important content of those materials is the exposure of the staged "self-immolation incident." Many Internet users have learned the truth after circumventing the CCP's information blockade. We are unable to list all the examples of how people have seen through the CCP's lies after learning about the truth about the staged "self-immolation." Here is an interesting incident that took place in a high school classroom.

A high-school student's letter to the Minghui website published on January 12, 2007 entitled, “A Usually Quiet Classroom Seethes,” recounts what happened: "... All of a sudden, the teacher changed the subject and said, 'Let us talk about science. How do we believe in science? In my opinion, Falun Gong does not believe in science.'

“A student stood up and said, ‘Teacher, what you said is not right. Falun Gong is great, and Falun Gong practitioners are good people. The Tiananmen Square Self-Immolation incident was fake.' Another student added, 'Yes, the Self-Immolation incident was not real. Liu Siying, a 12-year-old girl, was burned badly, but her burns should have been treated by exposing the wounds rather than covering them with a bandage that would cause infection.'

“Another student joined the conversation, saying, 'I knew it was fake. Wang Jindong’s whole body appeared to be badly burned, but the plastic soda bottle that he had used for gasoline remained miraculously intact in his hands.'

“More students joined in. They talked with each other in groups of three to five. The more they talked, the more suspicious points were identified, such as the video showing a woman's death was caused by a policeman at the scene striking her; why were there were so many fire extinguishers on hand; and how could Liu Siying talk when she had had a tracheotomy. Many students had watched the step-by-step de-construction of the incident on a DVD and knew the truth: it was staged, and Falun Gong practitioners had nothing to do with it.

“The teacher asked, 'Where did you get the DVD?' The students replied, 'You can easily find one at any door. Someone always sends flyers and DVDs and posters to us. We know a lot about Falun Gong.'"

It shows that many people in China first learned the truth about the staged "self-immolation” and were then able to completely see through the CCP's lies! With more and more people having access to free information and learning the truth, just imagine what will happen in China!

On another matter, Ethan Gutmann's investigative report "Into Thin Airwaves" recorded people's true reactions regarding the TV interception incident in Changchun City. It answered the “Self-immolation” incident question from another point of view. On March 5, 2002, Falun Gong practitioners for the first time successfully tapped into the Changchun TV network and broadcast truth-clarification videos, such as "Self-immolation or a Hoax," and "Falun Dafa Around the World."

Gutmann wrote, "The Falun Gong broadcast played on eight channels for 50 minutes, garnering an audience of over one million people, the ratings building as word spread, people calling each other, saying they should turn on their TV immediately. In some neighborhoods, local Party officials grew desperate and cut the power, plunging streets into darkness. In others, such as those near Cultural Square, people spilled into the streets to celebrate. 'The ban is over! Falun Gong is rehabilitated!' A few practitioners emerged from factories and hideouts, openly handing out literature. Neighbors, children, random strangers, even the old ladies with the red armbands approached them, everyone talking at once, bubbling over, laughing, slapping them playfully, congratulating them."

The CCP plotted the "self-immolation" to deceive the public, but people who are eager to learn the truth have been freed from its lies. People's consciences are awakening, which really panics the CCP, because that goes against the Party's primary theme. But it is Heaven's will and an unstoppable trend.