Counter-Revolutionary Features of Wang Ming, Liu Shao-chi and Chou Yang
Counter-Revolutionary Features of Wang Ming, Liu Shao-chi and Chou Yang
Counter-Revolutionary Features of Wang Ming, Liu Shao-chi and Chou Yang
Counter-Revolutionary Features of Wang Ming, Liu Shao-chi and Chou Yang Revealed By the Play "Death of Li Hsiu-cheng"
by Chung An
Source: Peking Review, No. 21, May 21, 1971
OUR great leader Chairman Mao has pointed out: 'The people, and the people alone, are the motive force in the making of world history." (On Coalition Government.) To laud the heroes who create history or lavishly prettify such dregs of history as the renegades, enemy agents, national traitors and counterrevolutionaries who have wormed their way into the revolutionary ranks; to educate the people in the revolutionary spirit of the proletariat, inspire them with it and promote the advance of history or corrupt people's souls with the reactionary ideas of the exploiting classes and hold back the advance of history — this is a question of principle in the struggle between Chairman Mao's proletarian line in literature and art and the counter-revolutionary revisionist line in literature and art and in the struggle between historical materialism and historical idealism.
The existence of two hostile contingents on the literary and art front has always reflected the political struggle between the two classes and the two lines. The Death of Li Hsiu-cheng1, a play turned out and presented to the public by the renegade and enemy agent Yang Han-sheng in 1937 and restaged in 1963, is a big poisonous weed that dressed up the renegades, opposed Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line and served the counter-revolutionary line of Wang Ming and Liu Shao-chi. Thorough criticism of this reactionary work helps us see the counter-revolutionary features of Chou Yang, Hsia Yen, Tien Han and Yang Han-sheng and their masters Wang Ming and Liu Shao-chi and their gang, raise our consciousness of class struggle and the struggle between the two lines and further consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat.
Lenin penetratingly pointed out: "Revolutions are subjected to the most serious tests in the fire of battle."(The Achievements and Difficulties of the Soviet Government.) Genuine revolutionaries and sham revolutionaries or counter-revolutionaries are clearly revealed during the practical tests of revolutionary struggle.
The Taiping Heavenly Kingdom revolutionary movement- which broke out in the mid-19th century fought against the feudal Ching Dynasty rulers and national oppression. During this movement many leaders and heroes of peasant revolution such as Hung Hsiu-chuan and Chen Yu-cheng emerged. At the same time, some sham revolutionaries and counter-revolutionaries who had sneaked into the revolutionary ranks were also exposed. After being captured by the Hunan Army, the counter-revolutionary army of the landlords, between July and August 1864, Li Hsiu-cheng, once an important general of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, soon betrayed the revolution and wrote his notorious confession in an enemy prison. In it he viciously slandered and attacked the Taiping revolutionary movement, shamelessly flattered the enemy and tearfully repented his past. He even went to the enemy on his belly and made a "ten-point proposal calling for surrender" in an attempt to save his miserable life at the cost of the blood of his comrades-in-arms. However, this spineless mangy dog could not escape execution by the enemy. The year Li Hsiu-cheng was killed, Tseng Kuo-fan3, Hunan Army chieftain and executioner, printed for circulation the former's confession under the title of Confession of Li Hsiu-cheng. Revised and facsimile editions were later published. There is every evidence to prove Li Hsiu-cheng's crime of surrendering to the enemy and betrayal, and it is futile for anyone to try to reverse this well-established historical case.
For years, however, Chou Yang, Yang Han-sheng and their gang worked obstinately to put this renegade in the ranks of people's heroes. Chou Yang shouted: "The monument to the martyrs in front of Tien An Men also gives credit to Li Hsiu-cheng." Yang Han-sheng praised Li Hsiu-cheng as someone who "always put revolution and unity first without considering his own life or death." "He was truly no ordinary man. He was a revolutionary hero." Chou Yang and his gang of renegades, enemy agents and sham Marxist political swindlers praised Li Hsiu-cheng ad nauseam through such reactionary subjective idealist phrases as a "sage and hero" of "foresight and vision," the "soul of national existence" and a "big master leading the historical movement."
To turn this shameless renegade into a "revolutionary hero," Yang Han-sheng racked his brains to set the plot and fabricate events in The Death of Li Hsiu-cheng. He had Li Hsiu-cheng enter the stage as a "national hero" in resisting foreign aggressors. Then, the characters in the play heaped praise on him, eulogizing him for being "both intelligent and brave," cherishing "infinite loyalty," playing the role of a "towering pillar" for the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom and that "all the officials and officers in the court and all the country's army men and civilians place their hopes on you." Li Hsiu-cheng is thus crowned with the laurel of saviour. And through talk between Ching officials about what they saw and heard and their conversations, Li Hsiu-cheng is described as a man of "great popularity among the people" and praised for being the "first big hero of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom." The final scene presents the details of his fabricated "heroic death" as follows: When Tseng Kuo-fan sends someone to ask him to act on behalf of the Ching Dynasty and call on the hundreds of thousands of Taiping Army members along the north and south banks of the Yangtze River to surrender after his capture, he defies the butcher's sword and stands majestically on the side of justice, saying angrily: "Those shameless slaves arc day-dreaming!" He then makes a noble speech, expresses his feelings by a libation, reviews the '^evolutionary journey" and pays his respects to the "grand ideals of the heroic martyrs." He finally commits suicide by sword, thereby showing his "dedication to the great cause of the Heavenly Kingdom until his dying day." This was how Yang Han-sheng coloured over the monstrous ghost and spruced up the renegade as a hero.
But no adornment can cover up the true image of this renegade. "Sham is sham, and the mask must be stripped off." (Introductory note to Material on the Hu Feng Counter-Revolutionary Clique.) It was no other "shameless slave" than Li Hsiu-cheng himself, according to historical facts, who hatched the vicious intrigue of calling on the Taiping Army to surrender! It was clearly written in his confession: "I am willing to gradually get all my subordinates on both banks to surrender as my repayment to your noble kindness and my tribute to the Emperor of the great Ching Dynasty to remedy my past crimes." He confessed frankly that all this was aimed at helping the Ching Dynasty "pacify the nation with the sword of benevolence and love." Like a hammer, the facts dashed to pieces the "heroic image" fabricated by Yang Han-sheng.
After the traitorous face of Li Hsiu-cheng was exposed, Chou Yang and Yang Han-sheng with evil intent manufactured all sorts of fallacies to defend him at any cost, saying that "Li Hsiu-cheng was a man of the past and we cannot set demands on him based on proletarian standards," "writing a confession might be Li Hsiu-cheng's tactics," he would work out "an opportunity to escape and then carry on," and so on and so forth. Desperate and enraged by this incontestable exposure, Chou Yang arbitrarily ordered: "Portraits of Li Hsiu-cheng may be hung as usual and plays about him should be put on as usual." In a word, Li Hsiu-cheng's betrayal is justified and should not be criticized.
These apologies are an exact reproduction of Liu Shao-chi's renegade philosophy. On the eve of the outbreak of the anti-Japanese war, Liu Shao-chi instructed a group of renegades in Kuomintang prisons to write "anti-Communist statements" and surrender to the enemy by betraying the Party. However, sophist that he was, he argued that this was only to fulfil a "simple procedure," a "false voluntary confession" and aimed at "getting out to take on work." This is absolute nonsense! What kind of "false voluntary confession" is it when they made open statements against the Communist Party? Since they had betrayed the revolution, how absurd was it for them to talk about "getting out to take on work"!
The renegade philosophy is the philosophy of survival. All the "tactics" of "false voluntary confession" and "getting out to take on work" are pure lies to deceive themselves and others and to cover up their base souls. Liu Shao-chi advocated that one should "cherish oneself and protect one's own life and health," and the Soviet revisionist renegade clique railed that "if one loses his head, what is the use of principles?" As far as they are concerned, if their heads are saved, they will betray and sell out every revolutionary principle and proletarian interest.
A hail of bullets, prisons and execution grounds arc touchstones showing who are heroes or renegades and who are genuine or sham revolutionaries. Faced with the test of life or death, we Communists and revolutionaries behave entirely different from them. Chairman Mao has taught us: "We Chinese Communists, who base all our actions on the highest interests of the broadest masses of the Chinese people and who are fully convinced of the justice of our cause, never balk at any personal sacrifice and are ready at all times to give our lives for the cause." (On Coalition Government.) Armed with Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought, Communists and revolutionaries regard the great and magnificent cause of communism more important than their own lives. They make sacrifices and risk their lives for the liberation cause of the Chinese and the world's people. They fight and shed blood on the battlefield and advance wave upon wave. They stand majestically on the execution ground and would rather die than surrender. The proletarian internationalist fighter Huang Chi-kuang'1 with his chest blocked the hole through which the enemy fired his machine-gun-Communist Li Yu-ho5, an outstanding personification of proletarian revolutionary fighters, unhesitatingly laid down his life for the revolution.The lofty determination of the proletarian revolutionaries reaches to the sky and shines over all the world. It is impossible for shameless renegades, who will trade principles for their despicable lives, to understand the high aspirations of proletarian fighters.
Why, then, did Chou Yang and his kind prettify and defend Li Hsiu-cheng and desperately clutch at this historical mummy?
Their own confessions give the answer. Chou Yang said: "We have followed his path" and "it is against our interests to defame him." Wonderful! He voluntarily put their gang after Li Hsiu-cheng in the family tree of renegades. He also said that how to evaluate L; Hsiu-cheng "is not entirely an academic question, but a question of political nature," that is, "how to evaluate the proletariat who wavered and then came back again or were killed by the enemy?" They defended Li Hsiu-cheng with their tongues, but what was in their minds was the "evaluation" of the traitors to the proletariat. It turned out that Chou Yang and his master Liu Shao-chi and their gang had all wormed their way into the revolutionary ranks of the proletariat, later "wavered" and become shameless renegades; then they "came back" again with ulterior motives to become hidden traitors. They and Li Hsiu-cheng are jackals of the same lair. No wonder they felt very uncomfortable when Li Hsiu-cheng's mask was torn away. They played the role of defenders and make-up men of renegades and national traitors like Li Hsiu-cheng and all kinds of counter-revolutionaries and their aim, precisely as Marx had said, was to use yesterday's base behaviour to defend today's base behaviour. ("'Introduction to Critique of Hegel's Philosophy of Right.") At the same time, they made Li Hsiu-cheng their protective talisman to conceal their renegade features so as to recruit traitors and deserters and prepare public opinion and organize for pushing Liu Shao-chi's counter-revolutionary revisionist line.
But fire cannot be wrapped in paper. The storms of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution completely lifted the mask off the Liu Shao-chi renegade clique, exposed their true colours one by one as dregs of history.
The Death of Li Hsiu-cheng which sang the praises of a renegade was an important example of "national defence literature"6 which Chou Yang and his gang advocated in 1936, and a component part of the "national defence plays." This play was hurriedly worked up and made public within a month after the outbreak of the War of Resistance Against Japan and labelled a "war of resistance play" and "national salvation literature." What, after all, was its role in the "war of resistance" and in "national salvation"?
Falsifying events, Yang Han-sheng openly spread class conciliation and class capitulationism in the play.Thus, when the Hunan Army encircled Nanking, Li Hsiu-cheng, a commander of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, went so far as to shamelessly praise this counter-revolutionary landlord army for being "unafraid of death," "very brave," "extremely staunch" and "full of determination and strength" and express his "high respects." He also regarded the Hunan Army, a counter-revolutionary army of the landlord class, as "our own brothers" and placed high hopes on it. The play also spreads the idea that as long as the Taipings unite with the Hunan Army, the magnificent land which has been ruled by the Manchu aristocrats for more than 200 years may soon be recovered and the Taiping Army, though its fate is at slake, can immediately have a bright future. When one character asks about the terms for dealings with Tseng Kuo-fan, chieftain of the Hunan Army, Li Hsiu-cheng replies: "There isn't much to talk about with them now. As long as they join us to chase out the Manchu aristocrats, we'll give good consideration to whatever terms they put forth!" That is to say, as long as the chieftain of the landlord class "agrees" to fight against the rule of an alien nationality, it is permissible even to sell out the entire revolutionary movement of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom to him. All this was passed around as the political line of the "revolutionary hero" Li Hsiu-cheng.
At the time when the Japanese aggressors launched an all-out war against China and the Chinese nation faced a life and death crisis, The Death of Li Hsiu-cheng shamelessly praised the landlord army which slaughtered the people, greatly eulogized Li Hsiu-cheng's capitulationist line and spared no effort in advocating that the Taiping Army in exchange for Tseng Kuo-fan's "alliance" should compromise and surrender unconditionally. This raised a very important question: When the national contradiction rises, could this bring about the dying out of class contradiction? Should the hostile class be united with unconditionally and "be given good consideration" regarding its terms, whatever they may be?
Precisely as Chairman Mao has pointed out: "In terms of relative political importance the development of the national contradiction between China and Japan has demoted the domestic contradictions between classes and between political groupings to a secondary and subordinate place. But they still exist and have by no means diminished or disappeared." (The Tasks of the Chinese Communist Party in the Period of Resistance to Japan.) The Chiang Kai-shek counterrevolutionary clique was compelled to accept the anti-Japanese national united front put forward by our Party, but it did not give up its activities to oppose the Communists and sell out the country. "The trinity of dictatorship, civil war and selling out the country has always been the basis of his policy." (The Situation and Our Policy After the Victory in the War of Resistance Against Japan.) Under the pretexts that "the state is above everything" and "the nation is above everything," the Chiang Kai-shek gang shouted that our Party should "fundamentally cease its class struggle" and "fundamentally cease its Red propaganda"; it arrogantly wanted to wipe out the Red Army and the border regions and raved that "it was necessary to use any effective method to eliminate the Red calamity in China through our own efforts." The Death of Li Hsiu-cheng preached that the Taiping Army of the peasant revolution and the Hunan Army, part of the landlords' armed force, were "our own Han nationality brothers" and "we'll give good consideration to whatever terms" the chieftain of the Hunan Army put forward. This is nothing but prettifying Chiang Kai-shek's policy of dictatorship and fighting against the Communists.
There was at that time a serious struggle in the Party between Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line and the Right opportunist line of Wang Ming, Liu Shao-chi and their like around the question of proletarian leadership in the anti-Japanese national united front. Chairman Mao reminded the whole Party again and again of the necessity of always firmly keeping in the hands of the proletariat the leadership in the united front and adhering to the principle of being independent and holding the initiative. Contrary to Chairman Mao's revolutionary line, Wang Ming, Liu Shao-chi and their kind howled about "unifying the army'* and advocated "everything through the united front" and "everything must be submitted to the united front" In doing so, they tried to hand over to Chiang Kai-shek proletarian leadership in the anti-Japanese national united front and the people's armed forces, and to place hope on the Kuomintang reactionaries for victory in the anti-Japanese war.
Waving Wang Ming's "coalition front" banner and acting at the bidding of Kuomintang secret agents, the renegade, enemy agent and hidden traitor Chou Yang and his ilk in art and literary circles raised the reactionary slogan "national defence literature" which openly denied class differences and advocated class collaboration. They babbled that "national defence literature" was the "literature of the entire Chinese nation" and the proletariat should not "demand leadership over it because the proletariat has special qualifications." Strutting about like "authorities of theory," these sham Marxist political charlatans raved that the slogan "national defence literature" was "irrefutable" and that it should reflect the "different interests of all kinds of people" in the "coalition front." The Death of Li Hsiu-cheng advocated that as long as the Taiping troops were united with Tseng Kuo-fan and followed the counter-revolutionary armed forces of the landlords, the motherland's "beautiful land" could be "recovered" and the Taipings would "immediately have a bright future." This was exactly the capitulationist line of Wang Ming and Liu Shao-chi advocated by "national defence literature." They tried in this way to dull the class consciousness of the revolutionary people, and so disarm the proletariat and its political party ideologically, politically and organizationally and make them follow the Chiang Kai-shek counter-revolutionary clique and betray the country and capitulate.
While calling for the establishment of an extensive anti-Japanese national united front, our great leader Chairman Mao especially stressed the leadership and independence of the proletariat. He incisively pointed out: "Is the proletariat to follow the bourgeoisie, or is the bourgeoisie to follow the proletariat? This question of responsibility for leadership in the Chinese revolution is the linchpin upon which the success or failure of the revolution depends." (The Tasks of the Chinese Communist Party in the Period of Resistance to Japan.) Whether or not the proletariat and its political party persist in keeping the leadership in the united front and maintain their ideological, political and organizational independence is a question affecting not only the whole process and outcome of a national revolutionary war but the existence and fate of the proletariat and labouring people as well. To unite does not mean to amalgamate. In the united front, the proletariat and its political party must not blur their class stand and obliterate their class distinction from the bourgeoisie. Only by maintaining its leadership and independence can the proletariat struggle against the bourgeoisie ideologically, politically and organizationally while uniting with it, and thus promote the consolidation and expansion of the united front. Only in this way can it smoothly and without losses switch over to use people's revolutionary war to oppose counter-revolutionary war when it is forced to break with the bourgeoisie. As regards the carrying out of the capitulationist line advertised in The Death of Li Hsiu-cheng, our Party's history has witnessed serious lessons. Chairman Mao repeatedly has taught us: "In 1927 Chen Tu-hsiu's capilulationism led to the failure of the revolution. No member of our Party should ever forget this historical lesson written in blood." (The Situation and Tasks in the Anti-Japanese War After the Fall of Shanghai and Taiyuan.) If the proletariat and its political party should give up their leadership of the masses, they would turn themselves into an appendage of the bourgeoisie and cause the failure of the revolution. Waving the "coalition front" banner and selling out the leadership of the proletariat was just a sinister political trap of this nature set by Wang Ming and his gang.
Our great leader Chairman Mao has pointed out: "Class capitulationism is actually the reserve force of national capitulationisim in the anti-Japanese national revolutionary war; it is a vile tendency that lends support to the camp of the right wing and leads to defeat in the war." (The Situation and Tasks in the Anti-Japanese War After the Fall of Shanghai and Taiyuan.) The Chiang Kai-shek counter-revolutionary clique was the headquarters of national capitulationism. Wang Ming, Liu Shao-chi, Chou Yang and other renegades, enemy agents and political charlatans like them were the reserve force of this headquarters. "National defence literature" was the literature of betrayal. Though it talked about "resistance to aggression" and "nation-
al salvation," the play was actually using these as a disguise to oppose the Communist Party and betray the country, thereby serving Chiang Kai-shek's national capitulationism.
That was why the play met the very needs of the Chiang Kai-shek counter-revolutionary clique, and it was praised by the Kuomintang reactionaries as soon as it was brought out. Even Chiang Kai-shek thought highly of it, and so it was staged again and again in Wuhan, Chungking, Shanghai, Nanking and other places in the then Kuomintang-controlled areas. This was no coincidence. Immediately after Yang Han-sheng was arrested by the Kuomintang in 1935, he gave in to the enemy and became a vile traitor. Following orders from the ringleader of the special agents of the Bureau of Investigation and Statistics under the Kuomintang Central Executive Committee, he wrote The Death of Li Hsiu-cheng which was nothing but a confession of his betrayal and his deed of sale in the service of the Kuomintang.
Staged in Kuomintang-controlled areas until the eve of liberation in 1949, the play went off the stage following the Chiang dynasty's downfall. In 1962, Yang Han-sheng thought that his chance had come. He blared: "Li Hsiu-cheng is worth praising. It's significant that the play can be integrated with the reality, and it is the actual situation." In 1963, he hurriedly put the play on the stage again, renaming it Li Hsiu-cheng. Chou Yang also came out in praise of the play: "It is good. It has the atmosphere of our era."
What was their ulterior motive in digging up the historical mummy of Li Hsiu-cheng? What kind of "reality" was to be "integrated" and what kind of "atmosphere" was to be created?
Resurrecting a historically dead soul is for the needs of realistic class struggle. Because of sabotage by Khrushchov revisionism and natural disasters, China at that time was faced with temporary economic difficulties. Internationally, the imperialists, revisionists and reactionaries of various countries again set into motion an adverse anti-Communist and anti-China current; domestically, monsters of all kinds launched a fierce attack against socialism. In collusion with the class enemies at home and abroad, the Liu Shao-chi renegade clique frenziedly set about restoring capitalism. The renegade, hidden traitor and scab Liu Shao-chi republished his sinister book Self-Cultivation, aiming at overthrowing the dictatorship of the proletariat and restoring the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. Lu Ting-yi, Chou Yang and other renegades and special agents, who were Liu Shao-chi's agents in the art and literary circles, all came out shouting themselves hoarse over the "spirit of Hai Jui." They let loose many poisonous weeds which advocated the spirit of "resistance," like Hai Jui Dismissed From Office. It was in this counter-revolutionary "atmosphere," when there was an evil trend of attacking the dictatorship of the proletariat and restoring capitalism, that Li Hsiu-cheng emerged.
To give prominence to Li Hsiu-cheng's spirit of "resistance" against Hung Hsiu-chuan, the play described the latter, the revolutionary leader of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, as a historical criminal who was "prejudiced" and "stubborn," did not listen to his officials' suggestions and adhered to an erroneous line which finally led to the defeat of the Kingdom. On the other hand, Li Hsiu-cheng was presented as the representative of the correct line. When the play was restaged after liberation, Yang Han-sheng deliberately added one act at the beginning. This act described at length that when victory was in view at the time of Li's attack on Sungkiang, Hung Hsiu-chuan, the Prince of Heaven, issued edicts three times a day ordering Li to "withdraw his troops back to the capital." Li Hsiu-cheng bitterly denounced that this was completely wrong and openly stated that he "dares not obey." Forced to return to Nanking, Li strongly advocated an "immediate withdrawal from Nanking" and opposed Hung Hsiu-chuan's decision to hold the city, threatening that he would die if Hung Hsiu-chuan did not comply with his suggestion. After the fall of Nanking, Li Hsiu-cheng's wife sighed: "Ai! Now we are defeated! Totally defeated! But who is it that has caused us to be defeated to such an extent? If, when he was alive, the Prince of Heaven had adopted what Your Highness had suggested, would we have been defeated?" This passage served to sum up the lesson of the failure of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom and further showed the correctness of Li Hsiu-cheng's "resistance."
Yang Han-sheng has always stressed that there is a motive in staging a play. What then was his motive in putting on Li Hsiu-cheng at the time? Before and after presenting it, he busied himself selling the idea: Li Hsiu-cheng "is sharp in the struggle over principle. He dares to contend with the Prince of Heaven when he disagrees, even at the risk of his life." "Li Hsiu-cheng's spirit of resistance has developed to a high level under the limits of historical conditions. We should appraise him in this regard."
"Contention at the risk of his life"!
Experience in class struggle has told us that in class society, every "contention" serves a certain class or a definite political line. We should use the viewpoint of class struggle and of the struggle between the two lines to analyse and use Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought to distinguish whether the "contention" is in the interest of the proletariat or of the bourgeoisie and distinguish whether it conforms to the truth of Marxism or is merely a fallacy of sham Marxism. Chairman Mao has pointed out: "The combination of these two aspects, democracy for the people and dictatorship over the reactionaries, is the people's democratic dictatorship." (On the People's Democratic Dictatorship.) In our state of the dictatorship of the proletariat, the people have become the masters of the country and enjoy full democracy which no bourgeois state provides. They have the right to air their views freely, write big-character poster's and hold great debates. Only those overthrown class enemies have bitter hatred for our state of the dictatorship of the proletariat and try desperately to resist. As Chairman Mao has pointed out: "The class enemies will invariably seek opportunities to assert themselves. They will not resign themselves to the loss of state power and of their property.” Because of the tremendous might of the dictatorship of the proletariat, one of their means of attacking the proletariat is to invoke the spirits and, through a character in a play, praise a dead man's spirit of "resistance," which gives expression to their own counterrevolutionary sentiments.
Our great leader Chairman Mao teaches us: "To overthrow a political power, it is always necessary first of all to create public opinion, to do work in the ideological sphere. This is true for the revolutionary class as well as for the counter-revolutionary class." If we "integrate" what Yang Han-sheng advocated — Li Hsiu-cheng's "contention at the risk of his life" — with the "reality"' of the struggle between the two lines within the Party al that time, we will be very clear about its essence. Didn't Liu Shao-chi wildly clamour in 1962 that "it is permitted to be an open opponent, . . . and one is even allowed to put forward his own line and programme"? What did "open opponent" mean? It was nobody other than the counter-revolutionaries he headed! "One's own line and programme" was nothing but Liu Shao-chi's counter-revolutionary revisionist line and his programme for restoring capitalism! What Yang Han-sheng did — prettifying the renegade Li Hsiu-cheng as the embodiment of the correct line and advocating Li's spirit of "resistance" and "contention" — was to clear the way for Liu Shao-chi's line and programme. Yang Han-sheng himself put it even more bluntly by arguing: Li Hsiu-cheng "is limited by his world outlook, he could only obey Hung Hsiu-chuan." "The tragedy of a peasant revolution lies here." Yang Han-sheng even clamoured: "If it had been someone other than Li Hsiu-cheng, he would have rebelled at an early date." This completely exposed Yang Han-sheng's wild ambition. Was this not creating public opinion for usurping the power in the Party and government by Liu Shao-chi's counter-revolutionary clique? Was this not an open instigation to oppose the dictatorship of the proletariat?
Like mayflies trying to topple a giant tree, they overestimated themselves and were ridiculed. How can the dregs of history stem the torrent of revolution! Chou Yang, Yang Han-sheng and company's criminal plot to oppose Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line and restore capitalism was pure daydreaming. Liu Shao-chi's bourgeois headquarters has been smashed in the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. However, the struggle between the two lines has not ended. Historically speaking, our Party has developed in the struggle between the two lines. It has, in particular, developed, expanded and consolidated through the struggle against the "Left" or Right opportunist lines represented by Chen Tu-hsiu, Wang Ming and Liu Shao-chi. The historical experience of the past 50 years proves that by implementing Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line we will have everything, while becoming divorced from Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line will make us lose everything. Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line is our Party's life-line. It is only because of Chairman Mao's revolutionary line that we have our Party, our army and our socialist motherland. Therefore, we should earnestly study dialectical materialism and historical materialism, conscientiously study the history of the struggle between the two lines within the Party, continue to criticize Liu Shao-chi's counter-revolutionary revisionist line and eliminate its remaining pernicious influence, raise our ability to distinguish between genuine and sham Marxism and enhance our consciousness of implementing Chairman Mao's revolutionary line.
(Abridged translation of an article in "Hongqi”, No. 4, 1971)
Original NOTES abbreviated--Transcriber
Source: Peking Review, No. 21, May 21, 1971
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