Taking firefighting & fire prevention down to a very personal level. Tiananmen Square firefighters have a specific mission.

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I saw this from The Washington Post being retweeted  today and it sure caught my attention:

Of course I had to know what kind of firefighter a child wouldn’t want to be when they grow up. And now I have my answer.

Max Fisher, The Washington Post:

Why, you ask, are there firefighters hanging out in Tiananmen Square? It’s a natural question, since they’re standing in the middle of a giant open square, with nothing flammable anywhere nearby. Except, that is, for the other people in the square, which may be exactly what they’re worried about. More specifically, the firefighters are likely there to put out any protesters who attempt to set themselves on fire.

Presumably, this week’s very public display of firefighters in Tiananmen – noticed by McClatchy’s Tom Lasseter, who posted the photo to his McClatchy China blog and kindly granted permission for me to reproduce it – is meant to deter potential self-immolators, or at least to put them out as quickly as possible.

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