I would like to discuss the question of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. Some events I have seen recently indicate that some provinces cannot solve many long-standing and thorny problems. The primary reason for this is their failure to take correct lines. In some areas, most of those in leadership positions did not take correct lines chiefly because they did not correctly treat the Great Cultural Revolution, the masses and the campaigns. The initial shocks, such as the one produced by the 12 factories in Szechwan, are an important question, universal to the whole country.
It is hoped that the discussion today will cause all of us to review Chairman Mao’s instructions issued since the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. Our comrades have touched upon this question in their study of Chairman Mao’s recent five instructions and the New Year’s Day joint editorial of the two newspapers and one magazine of the Central Committee. It is very necessary to make some time available to study and discuss the question of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.
I. Why Should We Correctly Understand the Significance of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution?
The answer to this question is that the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is a great event concerned with consolidation of the proletarian dictatorship and prevention of the capitalist restoration. All comrades know that the Great Cultural Revolution was noted in the Political Reports to the Ninth and Tenth National Congresses of the Party and even in the Constitution of the Party. The resolutions adopted by the national congress of the Party should be observed and accomplished by all members of the Party.
The new year has begun with excellent conditions at home and abroad. For the revolution, the situation is favorable and generally excellent. We should develop this excellent situation by having our work at home well done and the base areas well built. In order to solve the problems in some provinces and municipalities, we should first of all be able to solve the problem of lines. And, in turn, to correct the problem of lines we should primarily solve the problem of how to correctly treat the Great Cultural Revolution. From historical and practical points of view, the Great Cultural Revolution was and is necessary. To protect the Great Cultural Revolution is to protect Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line. All of us members of the Communist Party, especially the middle-level cadres, should undertake this responsibility.
To fully understand the great significance of the Great Cultural Revolution, it is necessary first to re-study Chairman Mao’s series of important directives concerning the Great Cultural Revolution. These are the key to the understanding of the Great Cultural Revolution. However, some people now have forgotten these directives of Chairman Mao’s, and a few areas still are practicing bourgeois dictatorship.
As early as the end of 1965 when the Great Cultural Revolution was just unveiled or when Hai Jui’s Dismissal from Office was criticized, Chairman Mao pointed out: “The key point of Hai Jui’s Dismissal from Office is dismissal. Emperor Wan Li dismissed Hai Jui from office; in 1959 we dismissed P’eng Te-huai so that P’eng Te-huai is Hai Jui.” This clearly indicated that the Great Cultural Revolution is a great political revolution waged by the proletariat against the bourgeoisie, but by no means a pure academic discussion.
In the initial stage of the campaign, some people were misled, thinking that it was an academic discussion; and the whole thing was actually manipulated by Liu Shao-ch’i. Later, P’eng Chen and his entourage jumped up and threw out a revisionist “February Outline,” which was in effect designed to protect the rightists and hit the leftists in an attempt to lead the movement toward the bourgeois orbit of pure academic discussion. Chairman Mao resolutely told P’eng Chen and his entourage to stand aside and pointed out that the old Propaganda Department was the court of hell and that we must “overthrow the king of hell and liberate the little ghosts.” Chairman Mao said, “We always maintain that whenever the central agencies do bad things, I will call on the local organizations to rebel and attack the central.” The “do bad things” here refers to the practice of revisionism. Once Chairman Mao asked Comrade Hsu Shih-yu in Hangchow: “What would you do if revisionism appeared in the Central Committee?” Chairman Mao has repeatedly commented on this question. In May 1966, he personally formulated the “May 16” Notice, a program for the Cultural Revolution, containing many important directives. Chairman Mao stated: “Representatives of the bourgeoisie that sneak into the Party, the government, the Army and the cultural circles are a batch of counterrevolutionary revisionists who will seize political power and turn the proletariat dictatorship into bourgeois dictatorship once the opportunity ripens. Some of these personages have been spotted by us, some have not, and some, like the type of Khrushchev, are being trusted by us and being cultivated to be our successors and are sleeping beside us. Party committees at various levels should sufficiently notice this point.” This directive has been published; it is very important. But some people present at the Ninth Congress and Tenth Congress forgot it, and some people denied the existence of capitalist roaders.
When the broad revolutionary masses responding to the call of Chairman Mao actively threw themselves into the Great Cultural Revolution, Liu Shao-ch’i and his cohorts were caught in a fright, hurriedly produced the bourgeois reactionary line, and came out to personally repress the revolution. At this juncture, Chairman Mao personally called the Eleventh Plenary Session of the Eighth Central Committee, formulated the Sixteen Articles, and wrote “My Big-character Poster: ‘Bombarding the Headquarters.'” The sensational Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution was thus unfolded. Chairman Mao rated highly the Great Cultural Revolution movement, considering that this revolution was large in scale and that it mobilized the masses, which was of paramount importance to the revolutionization of the thinking of all people. Chairman Mao urged that, “you should show concern about the major events of the state and carry the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution through to the end.”
He encouraged the revolutionary youth to experience the storms and face the world in the Great Cultural Revolution and temper themselves to become successors to the proletarian revolutionary undertakings in the struggle. In the meantime, Chairman Mao was also very much concerned about the broad masses of cadres. He cordially advised that “you should put politics in command, go into the masses, work together with the masses and carry out the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in a better manner.” Chairman Mao warmly hoped that we veteran proletarian revolutionaries would keep our revolutionary careers clean in old age and strive for new merits in the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.
Toward the end of 1966, the Great Cultural Revolution emerged in an excellent new situation. As 1967 approached, Chairman Mao delivered the speech on “All-out Development of the Class Struggle in the Whole Country” (I&S Note: There is a sentence here that “The whole country develops it at the same time next year”), which can be considered as an attempt to seize power from a handful of the persons in authority who are taking the capitalist road. Early in October 1966, Chairman Mao resolutely supported the workers’ movement in Shanghai and supported them to rebel against the bourgeoisie. He was very pleased with the workers movement. The 16 Articles said, “The youths and teens are fighters of the Great Cultural Revolution; the workers, peasants and soldiers are the main effort of the Great Cultural Revolution.” At that time, [Chairman Mao] sent a leading comrade (Chang Ch’un-ch’iao) to support the workers’ movement in Shanghai and to handle the Ant’ing Affair. He agreed that workers could set up their own rebel organizations. Chairman Mao directed that he “may execute before reporting.” This is an instance where fact comes before a concept. At the end of 1966, Chairman Mao commented, “Shanghai has great prospects: workers have risen, students have risen and government cadres have risen.” Under the cordial concern of Chairman Mao, the leadership of the proletarian headquarters headed by Chairman Mao and the support by the People’s Liberation Army units stationed in Shanghai, the struggle for seizing power from the handful of capitalist roaders in the Party was unveiled.
It was not a matter confined to Shanghai but a matter of the whole country, a power-seizure struggle led by the Central Committee under Chairman Mao. Otherwise, the power could not have been seized. On January 16, 1967, Chairman Mao presided over a Standing Committee meeting and enthusiastically supported the power-seizure struggle that developed from the lower level to the higher level. He gave a very high appraisal of the power-seizure struggle waged by Wen Hui Pao and Liberation Daily, and pointed out: “It is a great revolution, in which one class overthrows another class; it will have a great effect on the development of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in the whole of East China and various provinces and municipalities in the whole country.”
On January 26, Chairman Mao sent another great call to all people: “The People’s Liberation Army should support the broad masses of the Left.” Personally summarizing the basic experience in the power-seizure struggle, he said, “proletarian revolutionaries [should] unite to seize power from the handful of Party persons in authority taking the capitalist road.” He also pointed out, “where there is a need for seizing power, we must practice a three-in-one revolutionary organization to establish a revolutionary, representative and proletariat-authoritative provisional revolutionary organ which should be called ‘revolutionary committee.'”
When the January seizure of power in Shanghai repelled the counterrevolutionary economist evil wind, the Central Committee, the Central Military Affairs Commission, the Central Cultural Revolution Group and the State Council cabled their felicitations, advocating that the fate of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution and of the proletarian dictatorship be placed in the hands of the proletariat.
In August-September 1967, Chairman Mao inspected three large areas and gave important instructions on how to further develop the Great Cultural Revolution. In high spirit he reported, “the situation of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in the whole country is excellent, not just good; the entire situation is better than any time before.”
During the high tide of the Great Cultural Revolution, Chairman Mao far-sightedly stated, “The current Great Cultural Revolution is only the first one, and we are to carry out many later ones. The victory of a revolution can only be decided after a long historical period. It is likely that capitalism may be restored any time if we do not have our work done well. Members of the whole Party and people of the whole country should not think that three or four Great Cultural Revolutions are sufficient to bring peace to the nation. You must be always on guard and never for a moment slacken your vigilance.”
Comrades, I invite you to reflect upon it. How important this instruction of Chairman Mao is! At that time, we were in the ninth line struggle, which was followed shortly by the tenth struggle. Many of us did not quite grasp the meaning of the instructions when we first studied it, but we gradually learned. Therefore, it is necessary for us to study the Chairman’s instructions, which are important to heightening our consciousness on class struggle. Recently the Central Committee has prepared to collect in book form Chairman Mao’s instructions on the Great Cultural Revolution and have it published and distributed.
Only through learning from Chairman Mao’s instructions can we distinguish the Marxist struggle from the revisionist struggle. This will facilitate our struggle against revisionism. Why should I deliberate it as such? It is because some comrades in the Party do not understand it, especially the section I have just mentioned.
II. The Great Victory of the Proletariat
From the series of Chairman Mao’s instructions, one can see that Chairman Mao took great resolve to ignite and guide the Great Cultural Revolution. Now the revolution has terminated in a very great victory by first smashing the bourgeois headquarters headed by Liu Shao-ch’i. It was the greatest victory. Besides this, the revolution has trained broad masses of cadres and people, promoted the revolution in the superstructure and the development of industrial and agricultural production, and greatly liberated productivity.
Many comrades have seen [these achievements], but some others have not. Very soon, there will appear a mass movement for popularizing Marxism-Leninism and Mao Tse-tung Thought in the whole country. Now this movement is gradually developing. The practice over the past eight years has sufficiently verified this instruction of Chairman Mao: “This Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is completely necessary and very timely for consolidating the dictatorship of the proletariat, preventing capitalism from restoration and constructing socialism.” Had it not been for this revolution, what would our country have been?
Recently the Central Committee prepared to distribute to the whole Party material for criticism on Lin Piao and the Doctrine of Confucius and Mencius. Lin Piao and his wife Yeh Ch’un plus Ch’en Po-ta greatly detested socialism. When I talked about the above-mentioned material to my colleagues in the office, we were all indignant. It is not surprising to see that the class enemies at home and abroad would slander this revolution. Chiang Kai-shek has reproved the Great Cultural Revolution; the Soviet revisionist radios and newspapers have cursed it for seven or eight years. And in his counterrevolutionary program for political coup, “Outline of Project 571,” Lin Piao also cursed us with the language of the Soviets. Chairman Mao has told us, “What is opposed by the enemy is a good thing, not a bad thing.” This proves that our Great Cultural Revolution is correct. As our criticism of Lin Piao and Confucius is deeply developed, Chiang Kai-shek, South Korea, South Vietnam and Soviet revisionism all abuse our criticism of Confucius. From the class standpoint it is not strange.
The problem is that some comrades in our ranks, including party and non-party members, still do not fully understand and do not as seriously and effectively implement the Great Cultural Revolution as they did seven or eight years ago. Some even confound right and wrong and turn things upside down, or even describe the Great Cultural Revolution as a dark night or as a ravaging flood and a savage beast. Still others say that they have their hairs stand on end at hearing of the Great Cultural Revolution. Both the Party Constitution and the resolutions adopted at the Tenth National Congress state that the Great Cultural Revolution will be conducted again several times.
But some say the Great Cultural Revolution is [was] completely unnecessary and therefore should not be [have been] conducted any more. In particular, the senior and middle-level cadres speak of the revolution varyingly. Some of them say, “The Great Cultural Revolution has achieved a great victory in the whole country, but we cannot see it here.” What they mean is that the victory cannot be seen here and there, and that this being added, it cannot be seen in the whole country. Then why is it necessary? As I mentioned before, the Great Cultural Revolution defeated two bourgeois headquarters, which was the greatest victory.
Why cannot they see it? If they said they could not see it, they must have placed themselves outside the Party and all the people. Had Liu Shao-ch’i and Lin Piao come to power, capitalism would have come back, the Chinese society would have returned to a semi-feudal and semi-colonial society or become the colony of the Soviet social-imperialism, and thousands of people would have been beheaded. At that time, would you still say you cannot see it? When we say that the Great Cultural Revolution is necessary and timely for the whole country, we mean that it is necessary and timely for a factory, a school or a unit.
Chairman Mao stated, “Whether the line is correct ideologically and politically decides everything.” The line of Liu Shao-ch’i and Lin Piao has an impact on every unit to a varying degree. In most of the areas, Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line is dominant, while in some places the revisionist line is rather rampant. For example, the two important departments, namely, the old Central Propaganda Department and Central Organization Department, were not in our hands. Even on the industrial front, the revisionist line had a deep influence, not to mention the cultural front which had been under the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie for many years.
The situation has greatly improved since the Great Cultural Revolution. Without casting away the administration of factories by experts, control-restriction-pressure and the philosophy of servility to things foreign, how can the working class become the master of the factories? It was exactly because of the interference of the revisionist line that our steel industry has stagnated for ten years. Some enterprises were in our hands nominally but actually were gripped by the proxies of the bourgeoisie and some were even in the hands of the capitalists (some factories in Shanghai actually had capitalists as their production managers). Without such a revolution, what would these units have become?
And how could we have leadership moved into the hands of the proletariat? Chairman Mao far-sightedly launched a Great Cultural Revolution and solved this problem. But this revolution alone is not enough. Currently some provinces and municipalities [still have problems], the key to which is leadership. We cannot blame the masses or say that the masses are no good. Neither can we say that all those [who created problems] are bad men, for some of them are good people who are revisionist and capitalist only ideologically and who would correct their mistakes once their problems are identified.
Since the Cultural Revolution was started seven or eight years ago, the problems in some places should be dealt with. To solve the problems, we should first locate the causes so that we can apply the right course. Some people handle things indiscriminately; some units impute all the bad things to the Great Cultural Revolution or take them as residuals of the Great Cultural Revolution. This is wrong. For they are residuals of revisionism, how can we take them for residuals of the Great Cultural Revolution?
These problems squarely indicated that the Great Cultural Revolution was absolutely necessary. Where the line is incorrect, unity will not exist, and the bad men will have to be singled out by the cadres and masses. In some areas the criticism of Lin Piao and Confucius is not carried out. Recently we have faced the problems of the twelve factories in Szechwan province. What are their problems? They did not deepen the criticism of Lin Piao, which should be the key. We believe that only if we handle things in accordance with the spirit of the Great Cultural Revolution, will the problems be solved.
The Tatung Tank Factory had been inflicted with problems for eight years, but this time those problems were resolved in two months. The primary cause of those problems was a mistaken line. Certainly we will not deny that in some units the bad men stir up the disturbances. Again it is necessary to mobilize the masses for singling out the bad men. To describe these problems as residuals of the Great Cultural Revolution is in effect to restore the situation before the revolution, only to create more disorder. At a cadre conference in Kiangsi province there was someone spreading this counterrevolutionary rumor: “Sweep the temple; invite the real god; old marshals must return to their posts; little soldiers must go back to their barracks.” He wants to suppress all little soldiers. From a recent telegram, I learn that a group of little soldiers rose up to rebel for two hours, causing a great commotion. They did not yield to suppression and believed what they pursued was the truth.
I have told some comrades in Kiangsi that what they were doing was to reverse the verdict of the Great Cultural Revolution. I told them before the Tenth Congress; it was of no use. And again I told them at the Tenth Congress; it was of no use either. But do not worry about this, because the Central Committee knows these things well (Note: there is no respectable cadre at the upper level).
Still others commented that the Great Cultural Revolution was good, but we might not have had to do it that way. In other words, we should not have practiced the “great blooming, great contending, big-character posters and great debate.” They do not agree to having millions of revolutionary masses and the united proletarians seize power from those Party persons in authority who are taking the capitalist road. What they oppose is nothing but this, for if this was negated, the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution would be negated. In one of his talks in 1967, Chairman Mao pointed out: “In the past, we engaged in struggles in the countryside, factories and cultural circles, carrying out the socialist education campaign. But we did not succeed in solving the problems. The reason for this was the failure to find a formula or a method to mobilize the masses from the upper level to the lower level, in an open and all-out manner, to expose our dark side. Now we have found the solution: the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.” Honestly, without the Great Cultural Revolution, how could we have dug out Liu Shao-ch’i, a traitor who hid himself so deeply?
In the past, we could not completely grasp Liu Shao-ch’i’s treacherous characteristics, especially pertaining to his history. It was in the Great Cultural Revolution that the Red Guards found them through a thorough investigation. (Of course, we did grasp all the revisionist stuff that he had published.) Besides, without the formula of the Great Cultural Revolution, how could we have had a series of new-born things such as the revolutionary committees, the May 7th Cadre Schools and rustication of educated youths? It is impossible. Neither would it be possible to have the industrial and agricultural production develop so fast.
Without the Great Cultural Revolution, a mass movement so large in scale, Marxism-Leninism and Mao Tse-tung’s Thought would not have been popularized. Of course, the Great Cultural Revolution itself, as a new-born thing, has had an ideal process of development. Chairman Mao stated, “historical experience is worth attention; a line and a viewpoint should be regularly and repeatedly explained to all the broad masses, but not only to a few people.”
Now the instructions from Chairman Mao and the Central Committee are stuck at some places or some individuals who do not transmit them to the masses or transmit indiscriminately without indicating which are from Chairman Mao, which are from the Central Committee and which are from themselves.
Some people “praise” the Great Cultural Revolution, saying that the masses in the revolution were not obedient, wrote big-character posters on impulse and were talkative at meetings. What is wrong with this? Actually this was one of the achievements brought forth by the Great Cultural Revolution.
Chairman Mao has stated many times, “Our work within the Party should be made lively, active and vigorous, not spiritless and languid. Chairman Mao once told Wang Hai-yung that “students should be allowed to sleep and read novels in the class sessions.” Some people do not quite understand what this means. My interpretation of it is that we should not make the students too spiritless and that students should be called upon to rebel against revisionism.
The same problem exists in the armed units. Soldiers are told to obey orders unconditionally and absolutely. We must know that they are required to obey your orders conditionally, not unconditionally. They should obey whatever conforms to Marxism-Leninism and Mao Tse-tung’s thought, and rebel against whatever does not.
We all members of the Communist Party execute the instructions of the higher level on the basis of self-consciousness. We should judge the correctness of the line that the orders reflect. We only execute the correct line and correct orders. They will not be implemented if they are not correct. Some people are not used to this style, complaining that enlisted men are difficult to administer and are fond of submitting opinions. This is natural. Many recent political accidents in the military units were caused by rough and cruel administration and failure to do fine political-ideological work, which resulted in stacks of problems and deteriorating contradiction. The key here again is the question of line, such as how to treat the masses. The situation now has developed to a different level. We must study how to do ideological work. The old style, if completely unchanged, cannot do the job.
This situation is a good thing to us but not for some others. In our country which practices socialism, we must not forget that the workers, peasants and soldiers are the masters. The reports of the Tenth Congress pointed out that we should have the revolutionary spirit of going against the tide. Recently, the newspapers printed reports of two little students, one called Huang Shuai and the other from Kwangtung province. They wrote a letter to People’s Daily, asking for support. Their letter indicated a high level of culture and was full of sentiment. After reading it, we feel that they should be given support.
Chairman Mao recently inquired, “Why does the buffalo have two horns? It needs them for struggle.” These remarks were made first in 1955. He also advised us, “Since we all are members of the Communist Party, why should we hesitate at our speech?” We should boast less and criticize more; we should rely on the masses of workers, peasants and soldiers who have horns on their heads and have the courage to rebel against the revisionist line. Some units are afraid of the “four greats” [great blooming, great contending, great big-character posters and great debates] advocated in the Tenth Congress. They are so scared of the “four greats” that they have not dared to organize the masses for study up to now.
We should approve of the masses’ practicing “four greats” and going against the tide. Why do we fear them? Only those pursuing revisionism will be afraid of the “four greats,” and those pursuing Marxism-Leninism should support the revolutionary rebellious spirit of the revolutionary masses. Chairman Mao teaches us: “We do not even fear imperialism, why shall we fear the people? Those who fear the people or consider that the masses immune to reasoning can only be repressed but not persuaded are not genuine members of the Communist Party or genuine Communists.” Some people do not accept this teaching of Chairman Mao. They like repression or resort to arrest if repression does not work.
Someone said, “Veteran cadres fought the battles in the north and the south in the past, but struggled in the Great Cultural Revolution randomly.” This statement is not correct; neither does it conform to the wish of the veteran cadres. It should be said that veteran cadres are precious treasures of our Party. In fighting the battles in the north and south in the past, some of them were wounded. But they do not feel that they can divorce themselves from the masses or can put on an air of bureaucracy. Instead they actively participated in the Great Cultural Revolution and criticized themselves once they found in themselves shortcomings or mistakes. Hence, they achieved merit in the Great Cultural Revolution. There are a great number of such veteran cadres, not one or two. They really represent the proletarian revolutionaries of the older generation. As to the question whether some [veteran] cadres received more attacks during the Great Cultural Revolution, this needs detailed analysis.
Chairman Mao stated in his inspection of three large areas: “Why were some cadres criticized and struggled against by the masses? One reason is their implementation of the reactionary bourgeois line which provoked the masses. The other reason is that they had a conceit of their own importance as they had become high ranking officials with high salaries. As a result, they put on an official air, did not consult with the masses, treated others unequally, ignored democracy, blamed or cursed others and seriously divorced themselves from the masses. These actions invited the criticism of the masses, who did not have the opportunity [to retaliate upon the cadres] at time of peace. After the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution broke out, the cadres were flung into trouble.” Should these individuals referred to by Chairman Mao be criticized? You can blame others. Why can’t the masses criticize you?
This instruction from Chairman Mao is familiar to everyone, but some people forgot it. The above-mentioned veteran cadres that were flung into trouble can also be divided into two categories: One is those who accepted the experience and lessons from the active side and have become veteran cadres really trusted by the masses. There are many such good cadres. For instance, Comrade Ma Tien-shui of Shanghai, who emerged with a new spiritual face after the Great Cultural Revolution, works in the depth of the masses and has had his line corrected. In the other category are those who summarized the experiences and lessons from the passive side, being superficial and hesitant. Actually, they have divorced themselves from the masses in a different form.
Still others totally do not think of the success of the Great Cultural Revolution in overthrowing the two bourgeois headquarters, an event that related to the change of color in our country. However, they are deeply occupied with the attacks by the masses. Once liberated and in power, they seek every opportunity to liquidate the masses. That is what the cadres of Kiangsi are doing. The result is that liquidation will come to them instead. Without correcting the three ch’i [referring to three undesirable attitudes: grudge, despair, and disaffection], one is sure to fall. And without solving this problem, he will be overthrown again even though he is liberated now.
Someone said: “The account will have to be settled on being struggled against during the Great Cultural Revolution. To get even with those who struggled against us without taking the interest should be considered lenient. What is wrong to vent the spleen?” We must yell our warning to such a comrade: it is too dangerous; what do the masses owe you? Chairman Mao told us: “Who gave us the authority? The working class and poor and lower-middle peasants or the broad masses of laboring people who represent over 90 per cent of the population. The people will support us if we stand for the proletariat and the masses of people and overthrow the enemy of the people. . .The most basic principle of the Communist Party is to place reliance upon the broad masses of the revolutionary people.” If you must settle accounts with the masses, they have the right to retrieve power from you.
There is another speculation that considers Lin Piao’s revisionist line as the “ultra-left” in essence. In fact his revisionist line is the “ultra-right” in essence, not “ultra-left,” and is as right as the right can be. Only recently someone from a certain university said, “While the ultra-left is not criticized, right and wrong are confounded.” The biggest proof he offered is that no one has ever evaluated the merits and demerits of the seventeen years [before the Cultural Revolution].
It has been evaluated. The evaluation was done by many big-character posters in the Great Cultural Revolution and in the summary of the Educational Work Conference for Sent-down Youths convened by the Central Committee. The conclusion tells that the education front for 17 years did not basically carry out Chairman Mao’s line but was governed by the dictatorship of the revisionists. In his letter to Comrade Chiang Ch’ing, Chairman Mao pointed out, “Peking University and Tsing Hua University are the wrong knots deeply rooted.” Now someone said the “summary” is no longer correct or is a product of the ultra-left. And this remark has been spread everywhere. To some people, the criticism of the ultra-left and Lin Piao is fictitious, while the Great Cultural Revolution is the real target.
Our conclusion is: “While the ultra-right is not criticized, right and wrong are confounded.” In the current stage, in order to consolidate the results of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, it is necessary to criticize the ultra-right essence of Lin Piao’s revisionist line. Without doing so, it is absolutely impossible to consolidate and develop the great results of the Great Cultural Revolution. Last year one unit wrote an article saying that all the youths in that unit were ultra-rightists and describing them as wrong and bad through and through. If that is the case, what is the hope of the Chinese Revolution? Who can we rely on to succeed us? On the request for convening provincial Youth League Congresses, the Central Committee instructed: Most of the youths are good, otherwise our revolution will have no future or a gloomy future. Worthy of note is that in some areas counterrevolutionary rumors are spread, such as “Sweep the temple; invite the real god; old marshals must return to their posts; little soldiers must go back to their barracks.” Most vicious are the latter two sentences: “old marshals must return to their posts; little soldiers must go back to their barracks.” They mean that all those traitors, enemy agents, capitalist roaders, including Liu Shao-ch’i, will return to their posts and that all the new-born things of the Great Cultural Revolution will be abolished.
It is a typical restoration of the old, a counterattack, or a liquidation. This rumor was first started by two high ranking cadres in a military unit. The spread of these things is very harmful. Another instance is that [cadres of] Kiangsi province took Liu Shao-ch’i’s counterrevolutionary rumors for Chairman Mao’s instructions and transmitted them to millions of people at the cadre conferences. However, this was not strange. Some of our cadres have rumor markets in their brains. They sell rumors once they receive the goods. From the class standpoint of view, this is not strange.
Some people are not bad but are already disarmed ideologically and deprived of the ability to distinguish sweet flowers from poisonous weeds. Chairman Mao severely criticized this counterrevolutionary rumor and changed it to read: “Sweep the temple; invite the real god; old marshals return to the line; little soldiers are promoted.” Chairman Mao’s instructions sufficiently reflect the revolutionary line on the question of cadres. It is important that we should exploit the effect of the proletarian revolutionaries of the older generation and, at the same time, make great efforts to train thousands of, not one or two, successors to the proletarian undertakings. It would be a mistake not to exploit the talents of veteran cadres, and it would also be a mistake to determine their position by experience and age regardless of their performance in the realistic class struggle. Their ability to fight in the north and south in the past is important, but we should also see their consciousness and performance in the realistic class struggle. If their thinking is revisionist, can they fight for the proletariat? We believe that especially at this major turning point, the evaluation of cadres should not be based only on history without consideration of the present facts and that primary emphasis should be placed on their consciousness in the line struggle. This should apply to all cadres whether they are local, military, old or new.
For the mistakes committed by the veteran as well as young cadres, the practice of “watch and help” should be adopted and the cadres should be allowed to correct their mistakes. But in some places, veteran cadres who committed mistakes are allowed to correct their mistakes through “watch and help,” while the young cadres, once making mistakes, are condemned to death. Why can the erring veteran cadres be educated and young cadres not? It is not fair! It is harmful to the unity of the Party! Chairman Mao criticizes many people for belittling the Children’s Corps, for they commented that “How can you teen-agers and 20-year-olds be so smart?” The young cadres must be humble and prudent and should guard against self-conceit and arrogance, and should respect and learn from the veteran cadres. On the other hand, the veteran cadres should teach, help and lead the young cadres. They should bear in mind the question of teaching, helping and leading in dealing with young cadres.
The cultivation of millions of successors to the proletarian revolutionary undertakings is a great strategic measure and a hundred-year, long-range plan. We must grasp this great work and train successors at various levels. The training of successors has encountered few obstacles in local areas but more in the military. I always advocate that we should find several men in their thirties to be the commanders of large military regions.
With respect to the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, is it good or bad? This question has been controversial throughout the process of the revolution. P’eng Chen’s February Outline and Liu Shao-ch’i’s bourgeois reactionary line were all designed to choke the Great Cultural Revolution to death. In essence Lin Piao also engineered a set of revisionist lines identical to those of Liu Shao-ch’i. Before the Ninth Congress, he collaborated with Ch’en Po-ta in making a political report based on the theory of putting productivity first, saying that the primary task after the Ninth Congress should be the development of production in an attempt to counterattack and liquidate the Great Cultural Revolution through a legal approach. Chairman Mao negated this political report and personally formulated a line for the Ninth Congress, which persisted in the continuous revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat. After the Ninth Congress, a great victory was achieved in smashing the Lin Piao anti-Party clique under the guidance of Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line, and the struggle-criticism-transformation campaign was gradually more deeply developed. However, whether the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is very good or very bad is still controversial. Following the Second Plenary Session, there was a rightist tide emerging intermittently here and there. Those associated with this tide were, for example, Lung Shu-chin of Sinkiang, Liang [Liang Hsing-chu and Ch’en [Chen Jen-ch’i] of Szechwan and cadres from Honan. They tried to shift the general orientation of the struggle for criticizing Lin Piao in an attempt to counterattack and liquidate the Great Cultural Revolution. What they were doing was actually the struggle between two classes and two lines, a continuation of the struggle. This struggle will come up again in the future. Chairman Mao said recently, “On the question of the Great Cultural Revolution, we have to wait and see for another ten years.” This was to remind us that we should be ideologically prepared for long-term struggle. Comrades, you must have read the articles on criticism of Lin Piao and Confucius recently and must have learned that Ch’in Shih Huang was cursed for 2000 years for replacing an exploiting system with another exploiting system.
Will our Great Cultural Revolution be cursed? Certainly some people will curse it. And even ten years or several decades later, there will be some people who curse it and come out to reverse the verdict on Liu Shao-ch’i and Lin Piao. Confucius died several thousand years ago; yet some people still worship him. But Ch’in Shih Huang, who was a revolutionary then, was cursed for 2,000 years.
To oppose the Great Cultural Revolution is to oppose the Ninth and Tenth Congresses, but this is not an ordinary question. It is an attempt to restore capitalism and practice revisionism. My understanding is this: those who oppose the Great Cultural Revolution must advocate a capitalist dictatorship. Comrades, we should not think that there are no longer capitalist roaders, or even that there is no need to mention capitalist roaders. Some areas, in discussing revision of the constitutions of the state and Party, did not wish to include the phrase “capitalist roaders.” What queer talk! As long as class struggle exists, the bourgeoisie will plant a proxy in our Party and there will be capitalist roaders. If there had been no capitalist roaders, all the campaigns in the past should have been negated.
The three-anti and five-anti campaigns, the anti-right campaigns in 1957 and the four-clean-up movement should be all negated. That was the reason for writing them into the Party constitution. These were great events, not small ones. Some individuals committed the mistake of taking the capitalist road, but they have been corrected through our help. The correction is good. However, we cannot say the capitalist roaders no longer exist after the correction. Not only were there capitalist roaders in the past, but there will be in the future. A few men still implement the bourgeois dictatorship over the masses now or even say that there is no good man among the rebels! Their remarks smack of no Communist Party members. “The thousands of principles of Marxism can be summarized in one sentence: To rebel is justified.” Our old father Marx led us to rebel. Some people abuse us for rising up in rebellion. What is wrong with rebellion? It was through the rebellion led by Chairman Mao against imperialism, feudalism and bureaucratic capitalism that members of the Communist Party of China achieved the victory of revolution and succeeded in seizing political power.
In the Great Cultural Revolution, we rebelled against the bourgeoisie and all exploiting classes, and consolidated the dictatorship of the proletariat. What is wrong with it? Some people were rebels in the past, but now they swear at the rebels. This indicates that their thinking has changed and that they have forgotten the past. Was it a rebellion when we liquidated the local gentry and partitioned the land of the landlords in the past? Again, was it a rebellion when we fought against Chiang Kai-shek? Some people have forgotten these. Of course, there must have been some fish as well as dragons, mud as well as sand slipping into the Great Cultural Revolution. It is not strange that a few bad men have sneaked in among the rebels. When we first organized the Red Army, was our Army very pure? Impossible! It is an unavoidable phenomenon. How can we say that there is no good man among the rebels? He who says there is no good man among the rebels is in fact negating himself. He has forgotten who led us to rebel and has forgotten the old father of the rebels.
What would a Communist do if he does not rebel against the capitalist roaders? A Communist making such a statement intends to betray communism. We Communists must rebel against the bourgeoisie and the exploiting classes. Most of the people in question were discovered in our handling the internal problems and analyzing the problems. Through studying Chairman Mao’s instructions and the 10 great spirits, they may reform themselves.
In the meantime, they should also look for the mainsprings from their world outlook and transform their world outlook with Marxism-Leninism and Chairman Mao’s thought. A few men may not be transformed. The contradictions may change in two ways: some will change for the better and some for the worse. Some Party members may learn the problem and change for the better or completely change. Thus, some contradictions between the enemy and us may change into those among the people; and some contradictions among the people may change into those between the enemy and us.
In the minds of some comrades, the Great Cultural Revolution is not viewed as a consequence of the class struggle that has been engaged in since the liberation. Instead, it is looked upon as a thunder in the clear sky of an early morning. Some people even described it as a great misunderstanding, very reactionary in nature. They have a saying: “Veteran cadres return to their posts, young cadres return to their offices, and those who support the left return to their units. The Great Cultural Revolution is a great misunderstanding.” This deviation is an ideological problem, typically reflecting idealism. As they view the Great Cultural Revolution as a great misunderstanding, they are discontented with everything in existence, anxiously waiting for the situation to get back to normal. Instead of seeing the development as a spiral ascent, they look upon it as a turning movement within a circle. In the factories, they practice control-restriction-pressure; in schools, they put intellectual education in the fore and everything in an old frame.
What is this ideology? It is a typical vulgar theory of evolution. According to Marxist materialist dialectics, everything is moving forward and developing continuously. These people clinging to the old admit the truism of dialectics verbally but oppose the dialectics in deeds. At the mention of business administration, they urge the resumption of old rules and systems which have been discarded by the masses. They are enthusiastic for paying wages by the hour and giving monetary reward by the time, saying that in so doing activity may be promoted. However, they do not reflect what we have relied on for the revolution in the past decades. Did we rely on monetary rewards, wages by the hour or the time? No. We relied on Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line, millions of revolutionary masses, millet and rifles. Speaking of material incentives, Soviet revisionists have applied them vigorously, but they have rendered their industry stagnate and brought difficulties at home and abroad. If those things had been effective, why did the workers in Leningrad want to rebel? Did the Great Cultural Revolution rely on material incentives or the consciousness of the masses? Didn’t it rely on Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line to mobilize the masses? Certainly we do not mean to neglect the life of the masses, but to take care of the life of the masses is one thing, and to stress material incentives is another. To raise the labor productivity, we should do something on renovation of technology and mechanization. It is necessary to properly elevate the living standard of the masses, but it would be a great insult to the working class, not a benefit to the life of the masses, if we practice what is called wages by the hour and monetary rewards. Our Railroad Corps has built many railroads. Did we rely on the wages by the hour? The enlisted men of the corps receive eight yuan per month without any additional monetary reward. We entirely relied on Chairman Mao’s thought. These problems do not involve everyone. There are two departments in the Central Committee that pursued this line. They conducted an experiment in Shanghai but were dispelled by the workers. This problem is directly related with the Great Cultural Revolution. Today we discuss it here in the hope that our comrades in the study class, after returning to their units, will observe this problem and dare to engage in struggle, or at least report the situation to the Central Committee. Some areas ask whether they can resume the rules and systems adopted before the Cultural Revolution. At a planning work conference, one worker gave a clear-cut answer: “No.” He mentioned three conditions: first, we do not want control-restriction-pressure; second, we oppose full payment of monthly wages; and third, those things correct in the past cannot be adopted intact because now our production has developed just as a grown-up boy can no longer wear his old clothes.
This worker is versed in dialectics. He is right: things have developed and the thinking of leaders should catch up with the new situation. We resolutely oppose retrograde movement. Chairman Mao teaches us: “We should strive for discovery, invention, creation and advance. The propositions for standstill, pessimism, arrogance and complacence are all wrong.”
We must deepen the campaign to criticize Lin Piao and rectify the style of work, vitalize the movement for criticism of Lin Piao and Confucius and integrate the efforts for criticizing Confucius. In order to criticize the pernicious influence of Lin Piao we must overthrow the Confucian shop. Confucius was the first thinker in Chinese history that systematically and totally advocated idealism. All those clinging to the old eulogize him, and Lin Piao was the Confucius of the modern age.
Hence, the criticism of Lin Piao and that of Confucius can and must be integrated in order to overthrow the Confucian shop in our mind. Confucius lived in an age of great transition from the slave to feudal system. He hated the change of the social system, desperately defended the slave system and opposed the feudal system in an attempt to stop the rolling wheels of history.
Seven days after he became the premier of Lu State, he executed Shao Cheng-mao, a revolutionary. When he found one of his students called Jan Yu cherishing thoughts of renovation, he instigated some other students to attack him. Thus, Chairman Mao said, “Confucius’s working style much resembled that of the tyrant and smacked of Fascism.” Because of his perverse acts, he stepped down from his position three months after. Though he was not in office, his heart for restoration did not die. He went on to preach his ideas everywhere and cried, “The propriety is deteriorating! the music is collapsing!”, whenever he saw the situation turning better and was worried about the situation. Yesterday, People’s Daily published an article by Che Chun. The article was very well written; I hope that all of you will read it carefully.
Some people have no affection towards Marxism-Leninism but hanker after revisionism with tacit affection. They are not accustomed to seeing the newborn things of the Great Cultural Revolution and hanker after the old things.
Chairman Mao said, “Capitalism and the capitalist system ‘are in the sunset, breathing their last, and may die at any moment.’ On the other hand, Communism and the Communist social system are spreading to the whole world like overwhelming waves and thunders and are in their wonderful prime of life.” Why does a Communist Party member with communism as his aim so hanker after old things? This is a question that deserves careful study by all comrades present today.
Our chief purpose is to urge our comrades to seriously study the series of Chairman Mao’s important instructions issued since the start of the Great Cultural Revolution, and remember the three principles of practicing Marxism-Leninism but not revisionism. Only recently Chairman Mao warned us, “Comrades, beware! Revisionism will soon appear in China.” He also pointed out that many people criticize politics without knowledge of political situations and that the Military Affairs Commission knows neither the military nor politics. These instructions apply to government workers, soldiers and students in all areas. They tell us to grasp the major events that deserve our study. Revisionism, if it is to appear in the future, will be seen in the superstructure.
Chairman Mao also directed recently that we should all sing the song Three Main Rules of Discipline and Eight Points for Attention. In the main, he wishes us to remember that only unity can lead to victory. On Chairman Mao’s instructions, we must have a correct understanding and comprehension so that the spirit of the “Tenth Congress” may be better carried out and that we may better unite to win still greater victory.