Twenty-six years ago today, China’s People’s Liberation Army marched through the streets of Beijing in the early morning hours, firing indiscriminately among the unarmed protesters and innocent bystanders unlucky enough to find themselves in the army’s path in Tiananmen Square.

Seven weeks after students began to fill the square as part of pro-democracy protests, the ground and surrounding streets were littered with hundreds of their bodies and thousands more found themselves arrested.

“The events of June 4th, 1989, and the estimated hundreds of lives lost, live in infamy,” commented Grieboski Global Strategies CEO Joseph K. Grieboski”. “The Tiananmen Square Massacre remains a stalwart reminder that democracy and freedom of expression continue to elude populations across the world, and that many have and continue to die in the pursuit of freedom.”

As we mark the 26th anniversary of the events of Tiananmen Square, we remember those forced to make the ultimate sacrifice for their beliefs. Though China continues to attempt to scrub the bloody crackdown from the memory of both their people and the world, their brutal suppression of free expression and the pursuit of democracy have not faded from our minds.