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 Hold High the Proletarian Revolutionary Banner of Criticism and Repudiation

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SOURCE: Peking Review, No. 16, April 14, 1967
Transcribed by www.wengewang.org

A MID the songs of victory of the proletarian revolutionaries' struggle to seize power, a great new campaign has begun.
     The hundreds of millions of the revolutionary masses in China, wrathfully wielding their massive cudgels and using their pens as weapons, have started a mighty general offensive against the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road. They have begun all-out revolutionary criticism and repudiation of the bourgeois reactionary line that he put forward and of that big poisonous weed, the book on the self-cultivation of Communists which he wrote.
     The clarion call for this great campaign was sounded by three articles published in the Hongqi (Red Flag) — "The Bourgeois Reactionary Line on the Question of Cadres Must Be Criticized and Repudiated," " 'Hit Hard at Many in Order to Protect a Handful' Is a Component Part of the Bourgeois Reactionary Line," and "Patriotism or National Betrayal?" written by Comrade Chi Pen-yu. [See Peking Review, No. 15, 1967.]
     As early as May last year, Chairman Mao already pointed out: "The representatives of the bourgeoisie who have sneaked into the Party, the government, the armed forces and various cultural circles are a hatch of counter-revolutionary revisionists; once the opportunity comes, they will seize political power and turn (he proletarian dictatorship into a bourgeois dictatorship. We have already seen through some of these people, but there arc others that we have not yet seen through; some are still trusted by us and are being trained as our successors, people like Khrushchov, for example, who are still lying by our sides. The Party committees at all levels must give full attention to this. The top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road is just such a person of the Khrushchov type.
     Penetrating criticism, thorough repudiation and complete discrediting of the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road and of the bourgeois reactionary line will assuredly deal a mortal blow to the handful of Party people in authority taking the capitalist road, promote the great alliance of proletarian revolutionaries, bring about the revolutionary "three-in-one" combination, advance the proletarian revolutionaries' struggle to seize power, push forward the struggle to crush the adverse current of a capitalist counter-revolutionary restoration, and bring new victories to the great proletarian cultural revolution!
     The struggle of the proletarian revolutionaries to seize power is now at the stage of decisive battle. In criticizing and repudiating the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, we must put the emphasis on criticizing and repudiating his bourgeois reactionary line on the question of cadres, on criticizing and repudiating "hitting hard at many in order to protect a handful," which is a component part of this reactionary line, thoroughly eliminate its poisonous influence, and liberate the large numbers of revolutionary cadres who were persecuted and attacked because of the bourgeois reactionary line.
     On the question of cadres, the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao has always stood in sharp opposition to the bourgeois reactionary line represented by the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road. The 23-article document and the 16-point decision drawn up under the personal guidance of Chairman Mao both clearly pointed out that the great majority of cadres are good or comparatively good; unity with more than 95 per cent of the cadres should be gradually achieved; the policy of "learning from past mistakes to avoid future ones, curing the sickness to save the patient" should be adopted towards cadres who have committed mistakes; and the main target of attack is the handful of Party people in authority taking the capitalist road. But the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, colluding with another top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, unleashed the bourgeois reactionary line and pushed ahead along a diametrically opposed course. They branded large numbers of revolutionary cadres members of "sinister gangs" and "anti-Party elements" and did their best to prevent the cadres from rising in revolution and set the cadres and the masses sharply against each other. Even today such a situation is still to a very serious extent obstructing the formation of revolutionary "three-in-one" combinations and undermining the proletarian revolutionaries1 struggle to seize power.
     In this great struggle of criticism and repudiation, the cadres who have been persecuted and attacked by the bourgeois reactionary line should step forward courageously to make revolution. Those cadres who implemented the wrong line should immediately draw a line of distinction between themselves on the one hand and the handful of Party people in authority taking the capitalist road and the bourgeois reactionary line on the other. All cadres who want to make revolution should give firm support lo the bread masses of the revolutionary people and, together with them, thoroughly criticize and repudiate the bourgeois reactionary line of "hitting hard at many in order to protect a handful" and concentrate their fire on exposing and attacking The handful of counter-revolutionary revisionists and the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road who supports them from behind. A revolutionary "three-in-one" combination is formed in the storm and stress of class struggle. The revolutionary cadres taking part in the "three-in-one" combination are those who have passed the test in the mighty sweep and surge of the mass movement.
     We must link our criticism and repudiation of the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road closely with the tasks of struggling [against and overthrowing those persons in authority who are taking the capitalist road], criticizing and repudiating [the reactionary bourgeois academic "authorities" and the ideology of the bourgeoisie and all other exploiting classes], and transforming [education, literature and art and all other parts of the superstructure not in correspondence with the socialist economic base] in the various areas, departments and units. In the past 17 years it is none other than this Chinese Khrushchov who has fostered and protected a handful of Party people in authority taking the capitalist road and a handful of reactionary bourgeois academic "authorities"' and spread a great deal of revisionist poison in the fields of literature, history, philosophy, political economy, education, journalism, etc., as well as in Party, government, army, industrial, agricultural, commercial and educational circles. At every crucial moment, these ghosts and monsters, instigated by their boss behind the scenes, invariably come out one after another to launch frantic attacks against the Party. It is this handful of Party people, big and small, in authority taking the capitalist road and this handful of all kinds of reactionary bourgeois academic "authorities" who form the backbone of the force of this Chinese Khrushchov in carrying out the counter-revolutionary revisionist line. It must be understood that when the proletarian revolutionaries and the revolutionary masses concentrate their fire to struggle against the handful of Party people in authority taking the capitalist toad in their areas, departments and units, they are cutting off the sinister hand extended into various fields by the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, and that thorough criticism and repudiation of the No. I Party person in authority taking the capitalist road will raise the struggle, criticism aun repudiation and transformation in the various units to a still higher level.
     In criticizing and repudiating the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, we must thoroughly liquidate the bourgeois reactionary line represented by him in the past 17 years.
     In these past 17 years, the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao has held the dominant position in the Party. It runs like a red thread through all the years following the founding of the People's Republic of China. Under the guidance of this revolutionary line, socialist revolution and socialist construction in our country have gained one great victory after another.
     However, sober account must be taken of the fact that the struggle between the two lines in the Party has existed for a long time and has never censed. In the past 17 years there have been sharp and complex struggles in the Party between the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao and the bourgeois reactionary line represented by the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road. The question of which road China should take is the focus of the struggle between these two lines.
     The proletarian revolutionaries headed by Chairman Mao represent the fundamental interests of the broad masses of the Chinese working people and the revolutionary people of the world, and resolutely lead the Chinese people along the socialist road.
     Chairman Mao points out: "When the people overthrew the rule of imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism, [many were not clear as to] which way China should head — towards capitalism or towards socialism. Facts have now provided the answer: only socialism can save China."
     Representing the interests of the Chinese bourgeoisie and catering to the needs of imperialism and all the reactionaries, the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road pipes a tune contrary to the teachings of Chairman Mao in a vain attempt to bring about a great retrogression in Chinese history. He is the one who sang the praises of exploitation by the capitalists and applauded the rich-peasant economy. He is the one who opposed the socialist transformation of agriculture, handicrafts and capitalist industry and commerce put forward by Chairman Mao, and wildly advocated the "four freedoms" freedom of usury, of hiring labour, land sale and private enterprise He is the one who propagated the theory of the dying out of class struggle," and advocated class conciliation. He is the one who opposed the Party's general line for building socialism the people's communes and the big leap forward and did his utmost advocating "the liquidation of struggle in our relations with imperialism, the reactionaries and modern revisionism, and reduction Of assistance and support to the revolutionary struggle of other peoples" and "the extension of plots for private use and of free markets, the increase in the numbers of small enterprises with sole responsibility for their own profits or losses, and the fixing of output quotas based on the household." He is the one who in the socialist education movement pushed through the opportunist line which was "Left" in form but Right in essence. He is the one who cleared the way for the reactionary bourgeoisie to launch frenzied attacks on the proletariat in politics, economy, culture, education and other fields. This man's ambition is to develop capitalism and bring about a capitalist restoration in China, that is, to pull China back to the old semi-feudal and semi-colonial path.
     Therefore, to thoroughly criticize and liquidate the bourgeois reactionary line of the last 17 years represented by the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road is a militant task confronting proletarian revolutionaries and the broad masses of the revolutionary people.
     The current struggle between the two lines in the great proletarian cultural revolution is the continuation and development of the struggle between the two lines over the past 17 years. Only by thoroughly criticizing and liquidating the bourgeois reactionary line of the last 17 years and its pernicious influence in all fields can the broad masses of the revolutionary people gain an understanding of the acuteness, necessity and arduousness of the struggle between the two lines, draw experience and lessons from it, still more consciously adhere to the proletarian revolutionary line of Chairman Mao and carry the great proletarian cultural revolution through to the end.
     In criticizing and repudiating the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road, we should in particular make a penetrating criticism and repudiation of his deceitful book on the self-cultivation of Communists. This book provides the theoretical and ideological basis for his pushing through the bourgeois reactionary line. The criticism and repudiation of this book is an important part of the criticism and repudiation of the bourgeois reactionary line.
     This book on self-cultivation is completely divorced from the living class struggle, from the revolution and from the political struggle; it never talks about the question of political power as the fundamental question of revolution. It wants bourgeois "self-cultivation" and rejects the dictatorship of the proletariat. It propagates idealism, advocates bourgeois individualism and preaches slavishness. It is against Marxism-Leninism and against Mao Tse-tung's thought. "Cultivating" oneself comfortably shut away in a small room as prescribed by this book can only result in comfortably evolving into revisionism. The printing and reprinting of this book has spread poison not only throughout the Party and the country, but even abroad; it has done grave harm to people. During the great proletarian cultural revolution, some cadres, deceived and poisoned by this book on the self-cultivation of Communists, were prevented from plunging themselves actively into the revolutionary mass movement; instead they blindly carried out the bourgeois reactionary line.
     Comrades who have been hoodwinked and poisoned, never again be taken in by this book! You must plunge yourselves wholeheartedly into the intense struggle of the mass movement to brave the storm and face the world and to test, temper and remould yourselves in struggle. In thoroughly criticizing and repudiating this book, one must link criticism with one's own thinking, touch oneself to the depths of one's soul, vigorously destroy the bourgeois world outlook and smash the spiritual shackles put on one by the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road. This is a revolution to destroy the concept of self-interest and foster devotion to the public interest, a revolution in which the thought of Mao Tse-tung is used to defeat the ideology of the bourgeoisie and all other exploiting classes. Only by smashing these spiritual shackles can one advance relieved of burdens, really make a clean break with the bourgeois reactionary line, and come over to the side of the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao.
     Chairman Mao teaches us: "There can be no differentiation without contrast. There can be no development without differentiation and struggle. Truth develops through its struggle against falsehood. This is how Marxism develops. Marxism develops in the struggle against bourgeois and petty-bourgeois ideology, and it is only through struggle that it can develop."
     This great mass movement of criticism and repudiation is a revolutionary mass movement to vigorously eradicate bourgeois ideas and establish the supremacy of Mao Tse-tung's thought. In the course of criticizing and repudiating the No. 1 Party person in authority taking the capitalist road and the revisionist poison spread by the counter-revolutionary revisionists, the hundreds of millions of the masses will assuredly be able to grasp and apply the fighting weapon of Mao Tse-tung's thought still more effectively and bring about a new upsurge in the mass movement to study and apply Chairman Mao's writings creatively!

("Renmin Ribao" editorial, April 8.)

  
  
  

 
 
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