It Is Essential to Grasp the "Four Goods" Firmly
It Is Essential to Grasp the "Four Goods" Firmly
It Is Essential to Grasp the "Four Goods" Firmly
It Is Essential to Grasp the "Four Goods" Firmly
by Editorial Department of Jiefangjun Bao
Source: Peking Review, Nos. 51-52, December 26, 1969
THE great leader Chairman Mao has always attached great importance to the building of the basic unit of our army. As early as the initial period of the building of our army, Chairman Mao prescribed the principle: "The Party branch is organized on a company basis." In addition, Chairman Mao pointed out incisively; "Soldiers are the foundation of an army."
In accordance with Chairman Mao's proletarian line on army building and his consistent teachings, Vice-Chairman Lin creatively set forth the strategic measure of launching the "four-good" company movement throughout the army. Vice-Chairman Lin has instructed us that it is necessary to be well prepared lo fight against aggressive war, and that preparatory work is extensive and varied, but the most widespread, the greatest amount of work and the most decisive work to be done lies in building the company well. Vice-Chairman Lin has also pointed out that It will not do for the army if it does not grasp the basic unit, or in the course of grasping the basic unit does not grasp the "four goods."
Since the launching of the "four-good" company movement in 1961, Chairman Mao's line on army building has taken deep root in the companies, giving great impetus to building the companies into revolutionized and militant units. This has enabled our army to stand the rigorous tests in the great struggles of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution and in defending the socialist motherland, and to make new contributions to the consolidation of the dictatorship of the proletariat. Illuminated by the spirit of the Ninth Party Congress, the "four-good" company movement in our army has made new progress and -the army's fighting capacity has become much greater. Practice has proved that the "four-good" movement has played a tremendous role in the building of our army.
Today we are faced with the threat of a large-scale aggressive war unleashed against us by U.S. imperialism and social-imperialism. To carry out Chairman Mao's great strategic principle "Be prepared against war, be prepared against natural disasters, and do everything for the people," and to be well prepared against the aggressive war, we must grasp the "four-good" movement firmly, raise it to a new level, and build the companies even better. The key to achieving this lies in the correct handling of the relationship between the first "good" and the other three ''goods," with Mao Tsetung Thought as the guide. We must solve this problem well both ideologically, in our understanding, and in practical work.
What problems should be paid attention to in correctly handling the relationship between the first "good" and the other three "goods"?
One. Grasp the "four goods" in an all-round way. The "four goods" embody the experience of building the company our army gained through protracted struggle. In the past decades we have done various things, the most important being that of doing a good job in political and ideological work, in ensuring a good working style, in military training and in arranging daily life. As a whole, the "four goods" are interrelated and none of them can be dispensed with. It is primary to be good in political and ideological work, but the other three "goods" are not to be discarded. We must give prominence to proletarian politics, must put politics in command, and we must be firm and steadfast about that. Nevertheless, we should not think that by putting politics in command, military affairs can be neglected. Things always have various aspects; of the various factors in the fighting strength of our army, that of prime importance is political and ideological work; the militant style, tactics and technique and the arrangement of daily life are also important factors, and we cannot do without any of them. All the four aspects of the "four goods" should be grasped and not just one at a time. We must not think that being good in political and ideological work is everything. To substitute the first "good" in political and ideological work for the three other "goods" would be tantamount to negating the "four-good" movement. In short, one "good" alone will not do, nor will two or three "goods"; it must be all four simultaneously. Only in this way is it possible to raise the fighting strength of the army in a comprehensive way and meet the requirements for strengthening preparedness against war.
Two. Good political and ideological work takes the lead. The relationship between the first "good" and the other three "goods" is that of what commands and what is commanded. To be good in political and ideological work means to put Mao Tsetung Thought in command in promoting the revolutionization of people's thinking. That is the politics of politics, the soul of the soul and the core of the core. With this link firmly grasped, it is possible to lead the three other "goods" forward. Without being good in political and ideological work, the three other "goods" are simply out of the question. One view now current is that it seems that the question of the first "good" has been solved and the work of giving prominence to politics has been done sufficiently. This is not correct. Class struggle in the political and ideological field will never cease. The struggle between the proletarian world outlook and the bourgeois world outlook, and the struggle between proletarian ideology and bourgeois and petty-bourgeois ideology will continue for a long time. The revolutionization of thinking has no end. Political and ideological work cannot take effect once and for all. At all times, first place must be given to man, to political work, to ideological work and to living ideas. In opposing a war of aggression launched by imperialism and social-imperialism, especially a war of aggression in which atom bombs are used as weapons, we should pay even more attention to the factor of man and bring into play the superiority of the revolutionary people's revolutionary spirit. Putting the first "good" and the three other "goods" on a par or reversing the relationship between them is entirely wrong. We must firmly adhere to the path of giving prominence to proletarian politics. Whatever the circumstances, our first requirement must be good political and ideological work and we must first of all grasp this work well.
Three. The first "good" must lead the three other "goods" forward. Having grasped political and ideological work well does not mean having grasped the other aspects well. It is still necessary to use political and ideological work to promote the "three-eight" working style, military training and arrangement of everyday life. There must be an integration of viewing the situation as a whole with one's own work, and all work should be done well, guided by viewing the situation as a whole. It is essential to oppose the purely vocational .viewpoint without regard to the whole and empty politics without concrete tasks. It is incorrect to believe that grasping professional work and technique is the "purely vocational view" and grasping the other three "goods" is "not putting politics to the fore." What is politics? Politics is bearing in mind the whole and doing one's own work well. There is no such thing as politics in the abstract; working for the state and for the people is politics, defending the socialist motherland and the dictatorship of the proletariat is politics. At present, starting from the whole of "be prepared against war, be prepared against natural disasters, and do everything for the people," using good political and ideological work to lead forward the three other "goods," raising the combat strength of the army in an all-round way — all this is politics. In speaking of the revolutionization of ideology we mean the unity of theory with practice, the unity of thought with action, in a word, acting in accordance with Mao Tsetung Thought. We must start with our own work, keep the whole in mind and, guided by Mao Tsetung Thought, use the first "good" to lead the other three "goods" forward, have the revolutionary spirit of fearing neither hardship nor death, excel in skills and accomplish all tasks with greater, faster, better and more economical results.
Four. Bring into full play the function of political work as the commander and guarantee. Chairman Mao teaches us: "Ideological work and political work are the guarantee for accomplishing economic and technical work and serve the economic base. Ideology and politics arc the commander, the soul in everything. Economic and technical work are bound to go wrong if we in the least slacken our ideological and political work." Having the first "good" lead the other three "goods" forward mean3 to bring into full play at all times the function of political work as the commander and guarantee, to use Mao Tsetung Thought to command everything, transform it and lead it forward.
To act as the commander means to exorcise firm and strong political and ideological leadership in fostering our working style, in giving military training and arranging everyday life, to study and apply Mao Tsetung Thought in a living way, to criticize revisionism in all spheres constantly and to criticize the bourgeois military line with the aim of eliminating its pernicious influence, so that all work will always advance in the direction indicated by Chairman Mao and his line on army building.
To act as the guarantee means to have political and ideological work run through the entire process of fostering our working style, of giving military training and arranging everyday life, to arouse revolutionary enthusiasm among the masses, to bring into play all positive factors, so as to ensure that all tasks are fulfilled with outstanding success under the guidance of Mao Tsetung Thought.
The functions of political work as commander and guarantee are a unity. Commander represents the orientation, while guarantee is aimed at ensuring the orientation. If the commanding role of political work is not stressed first and foremost, vocational work will have no correct political orientation and will go astray. If the role of political work as a guarantee is neglected, various kinds of vocational work will not be done well and the role of political work as commander will not be fulfilled.
Five. There is flexibility within fixity. Things of fundamental importance, such as giving prominence to proletarian 'politics, studying and applying Chairman Mao's works in a living way, the "four firsts," the "three-eight" working style, democracy in the three main fields and the "four-good" movement, are fixed. It is always necessary to grasp the "four goods" in an all-round way under the command of Mao Tsetung Thought, to put good political and ideological work in first place and to use this to lead the other three "goods" forward; these, too, are fixed. However, certain concrete contents of the four aspects of the "four goods" are flexible and, no matter whether it is the first "good" or the other three "goods," new demands should be set forth in accordance with the change in the situation and tasks. Only in this way can the "four-good" movement continue to advance and develop.
At present, in observing, checking and doing everything in the light of preparedness against war, the demands set on the four aspects of the "four goods" are chiefly the following:
Further arm the cadres and fighters with Chairman Mao's great theory of continuing the revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat, study and apply his "three constantly read articles" in a living way, diligently study Chairman Mao's military works, strive to raise consciousness of continuing the revolution, foster the proletarian world outlook and the proletarian concept of war, strengthen the determination to carry China's revolution and the world revolution through to the end and bring into full play the revolutionary spirit of fearing neither hardship nor death. It is necessary to remain boundlessly loyal to our great leader Chairman Mao, to cherish an ever greater love for our socialist motherland, to hate, scorn and despise U.S. imperialism and social-Imperialism, to strengthen the concept of war preparedness, to raise morale to the utmost and firmly to establish all-time war preparedness and foster courage In fighting and confidence in victory.
The working style should be adapted to the requirements of war. It is necessary to vigorously carry out the militant calls of the Party Central Committee with Chairman Mao as its leader and Vice-Chairman Lin as its deputy leader. It Is necessary to strengthen revolutionary unity and foster the principle of concerning oneself with affairs of major importance and taking the Interests of the whole into account It is necessary to make harmonious and close the relations between higher and lower levels of command, between officers and men, the army and the government and the army and the people, so that they will be one, heart and soul, in waging the common struggle against the enemy. It is necessary to foster the fighting style required on the battlefield through practical tempering, especially alertness, fast action, bravery, boldness and tenacity. It is necessary to be able to bear hardships, to strengthen the sense of discipline and carry out and obey orders.
It is imperative to put Mao Tsetung Thought In command of military training, hereby heightening the fighting quality. It is necessary to be skilful in shooting and to master all basic tactics. We must train hard and master skills in close-range and night fighting tactics and fighting within 200 metres. It is necessary to shoot accurately, to be able to move freely and to make communication contacts well. Camping should be done well because it is concurrently an opportunity for training, mass work and fostering of the working style. It is necessary to be able to march, eat and sleep well and stand sentry well. There should be less but better training, with a view to fighting big and fierce battles and fighting under the most difficult circumstances. It will not do to rely solely on lectures; more time must be given to training.
Arranging everyday life well. The fighters are our class brothers, the glorious traditions of respecting cadres and cherishing soldiers must be carried forward, the principle of integrating strict demands with patient persuasion must be persisted in and method of political work must be used to carry out guidance and education well. Wartime arrangements of everyday life must be mastered. It is precisely under the present conditions of getting prepared against war that more attention must be paid to the well-being of the masse, and that everyday life must be arranged well, so as to guarantee that our soldiers are always in fighting trim.
Six. Appropriate arrangements. Work, time and manpower should be arranged in accordance with what is needed in grasping the "four goods" in an all-round way. Arrange political and ideological work first and allow a certain proportion of time for military training. Study Chairman Mao's works every day. Training in military technique must be done daily as well. All the check-ups, summing-ups and evaluations must be carried out in line with the principle of grasping the "four goods" In an all-round way. It is imperative to learn to "play the piano," avoid devoting all attention to a single field, prevent one-sidedness, solve in a still better way the question of the first "good" leading forward the other three "goods" organizationally and in planning, so as to guarantee that the "four goods" are carried out in an all-round way.
Seven. Leadership must go to the grass roots and vigorously grasp implementation. It is imperative to improve methods of work and lead in a living way. The main leading comrades must go down to the front line to impart the fine tradition of our army to the cadres at the grass-roots level and effectively help the companies handle well the relationship between the first "good" and the other three "goods." Take hold of selected basic units well and produce models in the all-round carrying out of the "four goods." The leadership should grasp the advanced companies and at the same time grasp those that are falling behind. Work meticulously and put stress on real results.
Whether one takes firm hold of the "four goods" and whether one Is able to handle correctly the relationship between the first and the three other "goods" is a question of one's awareness of the struggle between the two lines in military affairs and also a question of the method of thinking, a question of world outlook. The "four-good" movement emerged in the course of struggle. It is a product of the victory of Chairman Mao's line in army building over the bourgeois military line. And it has to advance in the course of struggle, too. It is imperative for us to study and re-study in a deep-going way Chairman Mao's teachings on building our army and Vice-Chairman Lin's policy and principles on building the army on a political basis, make further criticism of the bourgeois military line and constantly enhance our consciousness of carrying out and defending Chairman Mao's line on army building. The struggle to eliminate self-interest and promote devotion to the public interest must be carried forward to eradicate selfishness and impure motives and strengthen the revolutionary sense of responsibility in building the companies in an all-round manner. It is imperative to study materialist dialectics and combat one-sidedness in thinking. It is imperative to grasp the "four-good*' movement firmly, grasp it well and grasp it consistently, so that every company of our army will be built into a fighting collective infinitely loyal to Chairman Mao, into a steel blade which can stand the sternest tests In battle and in defending the dictatorship of the proletariat. In this way our war preparedness will have the firmest basis and we. will be able successfully to accomplish all the militant tasks given us by the Party Central Committee with Chairman Mao as its leader and Vice-Chairman Lin as its deputy leader. In case the U.S. imperialists and social-imperialists have the audacity to invade, they will certainly receive crushing blows, and none of the intruders will go back alive.
(Originally published in "Jiefangjun Bao," December 9, 1969)
FOR YOUR REFERENCE
1. “Four-good" companies: In accordance with Chairman Mao's line on army building and his consistent teachings, Vice-Chairman Lin Piao on January 1, 1961 issued a call to the Chinese People's Liberation Army for the launching of a movement to create "four-good" companies, which evoked a warm response from the masses of commanders and fighters. Since then, the "four-good" company movement has been developing vigorously throughout the army, and has greatly promoted the revolutionization of the People's Liberation Army and enhanced its militancy.
"Four-good" companies are companies which are good in political and ideological work, in the "three-eight" working style, in military training and in arranging their everyday life.
In designating the "four-good" companies, evaluations should be made twice a year: a preliminary appraisal in the middle of the year and a general one at the year's end- The title "four-good" company is then conferred upon those meriting such recognition.
2. The "four-firsts": In accordance with Chairman Mao's proletarian thinking and line on army building, Vice-Chairman Lin Piao creatively set forth the "four-firsts" at the enlarged meeting of the Military Commission of the Party Central Committee in October 1960. The "four-firsts" are: first place must be given to man in handling the relationship between man and weapons; to political work in handling the relationship between political and other work; to ideological work in relation to routine tasks in political work; and, in ideological work, to the living ideas in a person's mind, as distinguished from ideas in books. In brief, first place to man, first place to political work, first place to ideological work and first place to living ideas.
The "four-firsts" Is the concrete embodiment of Chairman Mao's thinking on building the army on a political basis, the orientation of the political work of the Chinese People's Liberation Army as well as the orientation in building the whole army. Upholding the "four-firsts" makes It possible to give full play to the commanding role of ideology and politics, to constantly promoting the revolutionization of people's thinking and to enable our army always to advance victoriously along Chairman Mao's line on army building.
3. The "three-eight" working style: The Chinese People's Liberation Army, founded and led personally by Chairman Mao, has fostered a fine working style during the protracted and arduous revolutionary struggle. Chairman Mao summed it up in three phrases and eight additional characters, meaning "a firm and correct political orientation, an industrious and simple style of work, and flexible strategy and tactics"; and "Be united, alert, earnest and lively." These are briefly called the "three-eight" working style.
The "three-eight" working style is an important component part of Mao Tsetung thinking on military affairs. It is the concentrated expression of the nature of .the people's army, the principle guiding our army's training, fighting and all other actions and an important factor in promoting our unity to defeat the enemy.
4. Democracy in the three main fields refers to the three aspects of democratic life in the People's Liberation Army, namely, democracy in the political, economic and military fields.
With regard to political democracy, fighters are politically on an equal footing with cadres and are free to criticize and voice their opinions of them and to put forward proposals regarding work in the army.
With regard to economic democracy, the economic committee elected by the armymen meeting at a grass-roots unit assists the administrative leadership in managing the mess and farm and side-occupation production. It supervises expenditures, checks up and makes public the accounts at regular intervals to guard against corruption and waste and any violation of policies.
With regard to military democracy, in periods of training there must be mutual instruction as between officers and soldiers and among the soldiers themselves, and there must be a review of the results of the instruction and learning. In periods of fighting, the rank and file should be aroused to discuss how to fulfil combat tasks and at the end of an engagement to review the fighting, the men's fighting will, their fighting tactics and technique and their sense of discipline.
Democracy in the three main fields is practised under centralized leadership for the purpose of achieving a high level of political unity, betterment of the armymen's life and improvement in their lighting technique and tactics.
Source: Peking Review, Nos. 51-52, December 26, 1969
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