Struggle Between the Two Roads in China's Countryside
Struggle Between the Two Roads in China's Countryside
Struggle Between the Two Roads in China's Countryside
Struggle Between the Two Roads in China's Countryside
by the Editorial Departments of "Renmin Ribao," "Hongqi" and "Jiefangjun Bao"
Source: Peking Review, No. 49, December 1, 1967
The present situation in the countryside is excellent. The hundreds of millions of poor and lower-middle peasants, like the revolutionary masses in the cities, have been fully aroused. Guided by Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line, they "fight self-interest, repudiate revisionism" and have considerably enhanced their socialist consciousness. The great revolutionary movement has brought with it a new upsurge in production. The farms have gathered a bumper harvest this year. There are signs of prosperity everywhere in the rural areas.
In carrying forward the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution at the present time in the countryside, an important fighting task is deeper criticism and repudiation of the counterrevolutionary revisionist line which China's Khrushchev advocated for the rural areas and elimination of all its poisonous influence.
China is a big country with more than 500 million peasants. The success or failure of China's democratic revolution depended on whether or not the peasant question could be solved correctly. The success or failure of China's socialist revolution likewise depends on how that question is solved. Since the nationwide victory, the question of whether the Chinese peasants will be led to socialism or capitalism has been decisive for the future of the dictatorship of the proletariat and the future of the socialist system.
It is precisely on this question of primary importance that all through the decade and more since China's liberation, a sharp, tit-for-tat struggle has been going on between the two roads and the two lines.
On the eve of China's liberation, our great leader Chairman Mao pointed out: "The serious problem is the education of the peasantry," and "Without socialization of agriculture, there can be no complete, consolidated socialism."
Our great helmsman Chairman Mao has formulated a Marxist-Leninist line for the socialist revolution in the countryside. It is a line to wipe out rural capitalist exploitation and bring about the collectivization of agriculture. It is a line to bring about a thoroughgoing socialist revolution on the agricultural front and lead the peasants forward along the broad road of socialism.
Hut what did the top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road—China's Khrushchev—do on the question of agriculture in the last decade and more?
Before the socialist transformation of agriculture was in the main completed, he did his utmost to protect and develop the rich peasant economy and oppose the socialist collectivization of agriculture. And after the basic completion of that transformation, he made big efforts to restore capitalism and disintegrate the socialist collective economy. He madly sabotaged the socialist revolution in the countryside, and came out against the masses of poor and lower-middle peasants. He pursued an out-and-out counterrevolutionary revisionist line, a line which represented a vain attempt to restore capitalism in the rural areas, a line which would, in fact, allow the landlords, rich peasants, counterrevolutionaries, bad elements, and Rightists to make a comeback.
In holding to the socialist road, consolidating the dictatorship of the proletariat, and digging out the roots of revisionism, it is of the utmost importance for us today to use Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line for systematic and thorough repudiation of this counterrevolutionary revisionist line of China's Khrushchev.
CHINA'S KHRUSHCHEV—RABID ADVOCATE OF A RICH PEASANT ECONOMY
The founding of the Chinese People's Republic marked the conclusion in the main of the democratic revolution and the start of the socialist revolution in China.
In March 1949, Chairman Mao in his Report to the Second Plenary Session of the Seventh Central Committee of the Communist Party of China said that "after the country-wide victory of the Chinese revolution and the solution of the land problem" the basic contradiction internally was "the contradiction between the working class and the bourgeoisie."
Chairman Mao also pointed out:
Scattered, individual agriculture and handicrafts, which make up 90 percent of the total value of output of the national economy, can and must be led prudently, step by step and yet actively to develop towards modernization and collectivization; the view that they may be left to take their own course is wrong.
In accordance with this Marxist-Leninist concept of Chairman Mao's on uninterrupted revolution, that is, the concept of moving over without interruption from the stage of bourgeois democratic revolution to the stage of proletarian socialist revolution, it was necessary to go into action after the land reform and, striking while the iron was hot, immediately develop the mutual-aid and cooperative movement, step by step build socialist relations of production in agriculture, guide the peasants on to the socialist road, and restrict and eliminate capitalism in the countryside.
In direct contravention of this proletarian revolutionary line of Chairman Mao's, China's Khrushchev-representing the interests of the landlords, rich peasants, counterrevolutionaries, bad elements, and Rightists—immediately jumped in with his rabid advocacy of capitalism and desperate opposition to socialism.
It was just a little over a month after the close of the Second Plenary Session of the Seventh Central Committee of the Party that this man, China's Khrushchev, went to
Tientsin and shamelessly lauded the capitalists, putting forward his notorious proposition that "exploitation has its merits."
No sooner had the whole country been liberated than this man, China's Khrushchev, went around fervently advocating development of the rich peasant economy. In January 1950, in his sinister "instructions" to the big renegade An Tzu-wen, he talked such nonsense as: "at present exploitation saves people and it is dogmatic to forbid it. Exploitation is needed now and it should be welcomed."1
Directly contradicting the view that agriculture and handicrafts should not be "left to take their own course," put forward by Chairman Mao in his report to the Second Plenary Session of the Seventh Central Committee, China's Khrushchev said: "Hiring of farm hands and individual farming should be left to take their own course" and "it's good if some rich peasants should emerge from this course." He also campaigned for "no restriction"2 on the hiring of hands to till the land, which he said, was "legal" and "benefits the poor people too."3
He babbled: "The type of peasant household which owns three horses, a plough, and a cart should increase to 80 percent (of the total number of rural households) in the next few years."4
In a speech he gave in June of the same year, he said: "The policy of preserving the rich peasant economy. . .is a long-term policy."5
These are the cries of a bloodsucker, and in them we can discern the greed and frenzy of the exploiting classes, the rural capitalist forces, in their vain attempt to strangle socialism. From first to last, it is the bourgeois philosophy of man-eat-man!
"Exploitation saves people"! "It is legal to hire hands"! What exploitation "saves" is bourgeois "people," and his "it is legal" is capitalist legality. Is it not crystal clear what evil slime was hidden in the very bones of this number one capitalist roader in the Party, when he so rabidly eulogized the system of exploitation and described as "paradise" the diabolical enslavement of hired hands?
"Develop the type of peasant household which owns three horses, a plough, and a cart"! It is elementary knowledge that in China's vast countryside, a peasant household owning three horses, a plough, and a cart was by no means a middle peasant but a rich peasant household. To "develop" such peasant households would mean developing a rich peasant economy, with the result that capitalism would win out in the rural areas, the poor and lower-middle peasant masses would sink back into the misery of oppression and exploitation, the worker-peasant alliance would be undermined and the dictatorship of the proletariat ruined.
"No restriction"! The zealous praise which this number one capitalist roader heaped on the rich peasant economy had no other purpose than to "restrict" and smother the enthusiasm of the poor and lower-middle peasants for the socialist road and clear the way for the capitalist forces. What he clamoured for was "no restriction" upon the capitalist exploitation. Such is the class content of what he called "freedom"!
China's Khrushchev turned things upside down to deceive the masses when he said: "When peasant households each owning three horses make up 70 percent (of the total number of rural households), collective farms can be set up in the future."6
There was bitter hatred in his slander of the poor peasants when he said: "Don't imagine that all those who oppose individual farming are collectivists."7
This was the greatest insult to the poor peasants and a gross distortion of the socialist collectivization of agriculture! Chairman Mao has pointed out that the broad masses of poor and lower-middle peasants have "a potentially inexhaustible enthusiasm for socialism." They suffered cruel exploitation at the hands of the landlords and rich peasants and have an intense hatred for the system of exploitation. Although their livelihood had improved to a certain extent or even to a great extent following the land reform compared with the past, many of them (the poor peasants) were still in considerable economic difficulties, while others (the lower-middle peasants) were still not so well off. This decided their resolute opposition to individual farming, their resolute opposition to the system of capitalist exploitation, and their enthusiastic desire to take the road of socialist collectivization. They are the force our Party relies on in the rural areas, where they constitute the main force of the socialist revolution. To attack the poor peasants is to attack the revolution and oppose socialism. To rely on the rich peasants to set up so-called collective farms would produce not socialism, not even a particle of it, but 100 percent capitalism.
The absurd "theory" that collectivization could be brought in only when "70 percent of the peasant households [had] three horses each" had no other purpose than to provide a fig leaf for naked capitalist exploitation. It is a sheer fraud, for it is absolutely impossible for 70 to 80 percent of the individual peasants to become rich peasants. Furthermore, everyone knows that once a rich peasant economy prevailed in the rural areas, more than "70 percent" of the peasants would inevitably be forced down once again into the utter destitution and suffering under the oppression of the landlords, rich peasants, counterrevolutionaries, bad elements, and Rightists. Such were the "benefits" which China's Khrushchev had in store for the "poor people."
China's Khrushchev summed up his whole anti-socialist theory in a programme negating the socialist revolution, namely: "At the present time, we must strive for the consolidation of the system of new democracy."8
What this meant was protection of the interests of the bourgeoisie and the development of capitalism in town and countryside. In the last analysis, it meant dragging liberated China back to the old road of semi-colonialism and semifeudalism.
Chairman Mao severely condemned this reactionary programme. In a talk in June 1953, directly opposing it, he declared this formulation was harmful. He pointed out incisively: The period of transition is full of contradictions and struggles. Our present revolutionary struggle is even more deep-going than the armed revolutionary struggle of the past. It is a revolution that will thoroughly bury the capitalist system and all other systems of exploitation. The idea of "establishing] the social order of new democracy" does not conform to the actual situation in the struggle and is obstructive to the development of the socialist cause.
Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line thoroughly exposed the reactionary essence of China's Khrushchev's line for developing capitalism and pointed out the way forward for the great socialist revolution. Thus there began a great socialist revolution involving hundreds of millions of peasants! Thus there began a still sharper and more intense struggle between the two roads!
CHINA'S KHRUSHCHEV IS THE NUMBER ONE CAPITALIST ROADER WHO TRIED TO STRANGLE AGRICULTURAL COOPERATION
A basic Marxist-Leninist principle and a consistent concept of Chairman Mao is that the proletarian revolutionary Party should lead the peasants along the road of cooperation. In 1943, Chairman Mao issued the great call "Get Organized!" in which he incisively pointed out:
Among the peasant masses a system of individual economy has prevailed for thousands of years, with each family or household forming a productive unit. This scattered, individual form of production is the economic foundation of feudal rule and keeps the peasants in perpetual poverty. The only way to change it is gradual collectivization, and the only way to bring about collectivization, according to Lenin, through cooperatives.
Following completion of land reform after the liberation of the whole country, the agriculture mutual-aid and cooperative movement developed a new stage under the guidance of this correct line of Chairman Mao's.
In 1951, the masses of poor and lower-middle peasants in Shansi and other places, acting in accordance with Chairman Mao's teachings, demanded that the mutual-aid teams be raised to the level of agricultural cooperatives on an experimental basis. This was a great revolutionary undertaking. However, working behind Chairman Mao's back, China's Khrushchev wrote the following vicious comment on a report: "After the land reform, the peasants' spontaneous tendency toward capitalism and class polarization began to find expression in economic developments in the countryside. Some comrades in the Party have already expressed fears of such spontaneous tendency and class polarization, and have attempted to check or prevent them. They cherish the illusion that this tendency can be checked or prevented by means of mutual-aid teams and supply and marketing cooperatives. Some people have already expressed the opinion that steps should be taken gradually to shake the foundations of private ownership, weaken it until it is nullified, and raise the agricultural mutual-aid organizations to the level of agricultural producers' cooperativesas a new factor for 'overcoming the peasants' spontaneous tendency.' This is an erroneous, dangerous, and Utopian conception of agricultural socialism."9
In attempting to strangle agricultural cooperation, see how bitterly this number one capitalist roader hated the enthusiasm with which the poor and lower-middle peasants were taking the socialist road!
These remarks of China's Khrushchev were a confession of his opposition to Chairman Mao and Mao Tse-tung's thought and of his intense hatred for the masses of poor and lower-middle peasants. He had the audacity to slander the socialist line of agricultural cooperation as an "illusion" and vilify as "dangerous" and "Utopian" the newborn things of socialism which emerged and developed in real life by breaking through the capitalist forces. His antisocialist, counterrevolutionary bourgeois stand is here exposed to the full. We can almost hear him gnash his teeth in his hatred for socialism!
On reading these remarks, our great leader Chairman Mao was filled with deep indignation; he resolutely refuted these absurdities. Chairman Mao has creatively and in a most comprehensive way developed the Marxist-Leninist theory of agricultural cooperation under the dictatorship of the proletariat. It was he who personally formulated the first decision of the Central Committee of the Party on mutual-aid and cooperation in agricultural production and victoriously guided the advance of the agricultural cooperative movement. The conspiracy of China's Khrushchev went bankrupt.
In 1953 when the national economy was in the main rehabilitated and the land reform was in the main completed throughout the country, Chairman Mao put forward our Party's general line and general task for the transitional period. He pointed out:
After the success of the democratic revolution, some people remained bogged down in their original positions. They did not understand the change in the character of the revolution; they still continued with their "new democracy" and failed to take up socialist transformation. This was liable to lead them to commit mistakes of the Right deviation. Speaking of agriculture, the socialist road is the only road for agriculture in our country. Development of the mutual-aid and cooperative movement and constant development of the agricultural productive forces is the centre of the Party's work in the countryside.
Guided by the beacon of the general line for the transitional period, the socialist enthusiasm of the peasant masses soared to new heights and semisocialist elementary agricultural cooperatives sprang up everywhere like bamboo shoots after rain. Confronted by this excellent situation, the number one capitalist roader in the Party and his collaborators were thrown into a panic. They hurriedly issued orders and, exclaiming against "rashness," forced the peasants to "withdraw from the cooperatives and return to mutual-aid teams." A number of newly established elementary agricultural cooperatives were thus smothered at birth.
1955 saw a nationwide upsurge in agricultural cooperation in response to Chairman Mao's great call. But seizing the opportunity presented by Chairman Mao's absence from Peking, China's Khrushchev once again masterminded criminal activities against "rashness." In May of that year, he and another top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road concocted the reactionary policy of "holding up," "contraction," and "checking up," and he personally ratified a plan for drastically slashing the number of cooperatives. In a little over two months, 200,000 cooperatives were dissolved in the country.
To this day, this Khrushchev of China adamantly refuses to admit his guilt. But there is so much conclusive evidence, no attempts at evasion on his part will work. His hundred and one sly sophistries only serve to expose more fully his incorrigibly reactionary features and his heinous crimes.
Seeking "theoretical" grounds for his opposition to the agricultural cooperative movement, China's Khrushchev had recourse to the out-worn weapon of "the theory of productive forces" taken from the revisionist rubbish heap of his forerunners, Bernstein, Kautsky, Bukharin, and their like. He declared: "Only with the nationalization of industry can large quantities of machinery be supplied the peasants, and only then will it be possible to nationalize the land and collectivize agriculture."10
His "theory" of "mechanization before cooperation" long ago went ignominiously bankrupt during the movement for the socialist transformation of agriculture. He denied the great revolutionary role of the masses, the main and most active factor in the productive forces. He completely negated such factors as the tremendously stimulating impact of the relations of production and the superstructure on the productive forces. According to his "theory," in countries where the productive forces are not yet well developed, the proletariat and the poor and lower-middle peasants, after winning victory in the democratic revolution, are not entitled to and should not turn the democratic revolution into the socialist revolution without delay; instead, they must let capitalism develop first. Without machinery, they deserve to be exploited by the capitalists and rich peasants.
If things had been done in accordance with his "theory," this would have led inevitably to the abandonment of both socialist agricultural cooperation and the socialist industrialization of our country.
If things had been done in accordance with his "theory," would the socialist revolutionary cause-not have been forfeited long ago; would not our state of the dictatorship of the proletariat have been turned into a state of the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie?
It is quite obvious that "mechanization before cooperation" was nothing but a pretext used by China's Khrushchev to oppose the socialist transformation of agriculture and the socialist revolution. His criminal purpose was to develop capitalism in China's rural areas, let landlords, rich peasants, counterrevolutionaries, bad elements, and the Rightists stage a comeback and make the masses of poor and lower-middle peasants beasts of burden for the landlords and rich peasants.
At the moment when the agricultural cooperative movement was facing strangulation by the number one capitalist roader in the Party, our great leader Chairman Mao made his famous report, "On the Question of Agricultural Cooperation," and later wrote the preface and editor's/notes to the book Socialist Upsurge in China's Countryside. In these epoch-making documents written with genius, Chairman Mao solved the problem of the socialist transformation of agriculture in a scientific, systematic and comprehensive way. He has thus tremendously enriched and developed Marxism-Leninism and completely smashed, both in theory and in practice, the wild attacks by China's Khrushchev and company.
Chairman Mao spoke highly of the socialist enthusiasm of the broad masses of the peasants. He said with great warmth:
Daily and hourly throughout the countryside the socialist factors are increasing. The great majority of the peasants are demanding the formation of cooperatives. A large number of intelligent, capable, fair-minded, and enthusiastic leaders are springing from the midst of the people. This is a very encouraging situation.
Chairman Mao denounced the opportunism of China's Khrushchev and others who vainly attempted to stem the tide of history. He penetratingly pointed out that "taking the stand of the bourgeoisie, of the rich peasants, or of the well-to-do middle peasants with their spontaneous tendency towards capitalism, they always think in terms of the interests of the few."
Chairman Mao has given a profound exposition of the dialectical relationship between agricultural collectivization and socialist industrialization and repudiated the absurd "theory" of mechanization before cooperation" put forward by China's Khrushchev. Chairman Mao pointed out: ". . .with conditions as they are in our country cooperation must precede the use of big machinery (in capitalist countries agriculture develops in a capitalist way)." ". . .we must oh no account regard industry and agriculture, socialist industrialization and the socialist transformation of agriculture as two separate and isolated things, and on no account must we emphasize the one and play down the other."
Chairman Mao's brilliant thesis solves this important problem of universal significance: In countries where industry is less developed, it is necessary and possible—after the proletariat has led the democratic revolution to victory—to turn the democratic revolution into the socialist revolution in good time and, relying on the powerful dictatorship of the proletariat, carry out socialist transformation of the ownership of the means of production and promote a leap forward in the social productive forces. While industry cannot provide agricultural machinery in large quantities, it is possible and necessary to arouse the socialist enthusiasm of the poor and lower-middle peasant masses and first accomplish the socialist collectivization of agriculture and develop agricultural production, thus paving the way for socialist industrialization and the mechanization of agriculture.
The evil wind of opportunism was stemmed and the healthy wind of socialism prevailed. Under the guidance of Chairman Mao's brilliant theories, the peasant households went into action in their tens of millions. The roaring waves of the great socialist revolution launched by the hundreds of millions of peasants quickly smashed and swept away the revisionist line of China's Khrushchev and his handful of monsters and demons. In this upheaval, they were clearly exposed in their true colours as Right opportunists. The great mass movement of agricultural cooperation swept forward with unprecedented speed and momentum. In just over a year, starting from the latter half of 1955, agricultural cooperation was achieved ahead of schedule all over the country and the socialist transformation of agriculture was in the main completed. Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line won a tremendous victory in the struggle between the two lines.
CHINA'S KHRUSHCHEV IS SOURCE OF THE SINISTER SAN ZI YI BAO
China's productive forces greatly increased after the basic completion of the socialist transformation of the ownership of the means of production. In 1958, inspired by the Parly's general line for building socialism, which was worked out by Chairman Mao himself, a Great Leap Forward took place in the national economy and a new form of social organization, the people's commune, appeared throughout the vast countryside. The establishment of people's communes all over the country was a leap forward to a new phase in agricultural collectivization and accelerated the collapse of the rural capitalist forces.
Our class enemies, however, were unreconciled to their failure. They harboured a violent hatred for the new victories of socialism in the rural areas and dreamt of nothing but restoring capitalism.
At the time when our national economy was encountering temporary difficulties as a result of the Khrushchev renegade clique's sabotage and three consecutive years of natural calamities, and when the imperialists, the modern revisionists, and all the reactionaries were staging a big anti-China chorus, the handful of top Party capitalist readers headed by China's Khrushchev thought it was time to restore the reactionary rule. They directed their flunkeys, big and small, to launch a fierce all-out attack on socialism in the political, economic, ideological, cultural, and other fields.
The number one capitalist roader in the Party vilified the people's communes, saying, "the peasants have gained nothing from the collective economy in the last few years."11 As a result of his incitement, a gust of sinister wind blew up in the rural areas—the San Zi Yi Bao (the extension of plots for private use, the extension of free markets, the increase in the number of small enterprises with sole responsibility for their own profits or losses, and the fixing of output quotas on the basis of individual households). This was a big performance put on by him in a vain attempt to break up the people's communes and restore capitalism.
He went so far as to bluster: "Don't be afraid of capitalism running amok," "the free markets should continue to exist,"12 and "we must fall back as far as necessary both in industry and in agriculture, even to the extent of fixing output quotas based on the individual households and allowing individual farming!"13
Another top capitalist roader in the Party elaborated this in a more figurative way. He said: "So long as it raises output, 'going it alone' is permissible. Whether cats are white or black, so long as they can catch mice, they are good cats."
In a search for "bullets" with which to attack the proletarian revolutionary line of our great teacher, Chairman Mao, these two top capitalist roaders in the Party also sent out their lackeys in all directions to "investigate" the "experience of fixing output quotas based on the individual households."
The reactionary essence of the San Zi Yi Bao which they put forward was to disintegrate the collective economy of socialism, restore individual farming, and give free rein to capitalism in the countryside, under the pretext of "increasing production."
As may be recalled, in order to carry out the San Zi Yi Bao, China's Khrushchev issued "instructions" and made "reports." How arrogant he was then! But now this big shot, who has "cultivated" himself to the very marrow of his bones, has the cheek to claim that he "did not attack" the people's communes during the three years of temporary difficulties.
The facts are all here, but he still tries to deny them. What effrontery!
The San Zi Yi Bao as advocated by China's Khrushchev catered to the needs of the capitalist forces in the countryside, encouraged the spontaneous capitalist tendency of the well-to-do peasants, and gave the green light to speculators and new bourgeois elements. All kinds of devices for the restoration of capitalism made their appearance in the few places where "the fixing of output quotas based on the individual households" was forcibly carried out in accordance with the sinister instructions of China's Khrushchev. These included the "responsibility plots," "the allocation of land to individual households," and "the system of responsibility for fixed output quotas" which seriously affected and weakened the collective economy.
For a certain period when the evil wind of San Zi Yi Bao was blowing, the handful of counterrevolutionary revisionists under the wing of China's Khrushchev became supremely conceited thinking that, when all seemed lost, they had hit on a fine way of restoring capitalism. They chanted in high glee: "Just when you come to the edge of the mountain and the end of the river, and the road seems lost; a village appears with rows of willow trees and bright blossoms."
All this shows that the San Zi Yi Bao so vigorously advocated by China's Khrushchev was a gust of evil wind that brought together the urban and rural capitalist forces in a frantic attack against the socialist positions in the rural areas. It aimed to undermine the collective economy of the people's communes, to subvert socialism, and to turn red China into a land of darkness. This all-out effort to restore capitalism was intended to prepare a way for their usurpation of Party and state leadership.
They were not alone in this. The top capitalist roader in the Party was peddling in China exactly what Khrushchev and his successors Brezhnev and Kosygin and their like had done in the rural areas of the Soviet Union.
The chieftains of the Soviet revisionist renegade clique were very keen on "the principle of free marketing of products" and prohibited "administrative regulation" of market prices. They declared: "The level of profits should be made the basis for the objective assessment of the operations of collective and state farms." Time and again, they relaxed the restrictions on private plots and connived at the private partitioning of public land. They allocated plots to teams and households on a large scale, and openly and "legally" allocated nationalized land to teams for long-term cultivation, allowing a family with only two, three, or more able-bodied men to form such a team.
It is just under the rule of this kind of counterrevolutionary revisionist line that in the villages of the Soviet Union, the individual economy has run rampant, the socialist economy has completely collapsed, and social polarization has grown steadily, with the rich becoming richer and the poor becoming poorer. There has been an all-round restoration of capitalism there.
Comrades, just think of the kind of situation that would have emerged in the rural areas of China if we had allowed the conspiracy of China's Khrushchev to succeed!
THE BIG STRUGGLE IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOCIALIST EDUCATION MOVEMENT
In the autumn of 1962, at the crucial juncture when the capitalist forces represented by China's Khrushchev were launching a ferocious attack against socialism, Chairman Mao himself convened the Tenth Plenary Session of the Eighth Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party, a session of great historic significance. Chairman Mao sharply criticized and repudiated the Right opportunist line of China's Khrushchev and checked the evil wind of capitalist restoration which the latter had stirred up.
At this session, Chairman Mao, issuing his great call to the whole Party and the people throughout the country—"never forget class struggle"—and setting the great task—"we must conduct socialist education"—sounded the clarion call of the proletariat for an all-out counter attack against the bourgeoisie. Like a thunder clap, it startled all the ghosts and monsters.
The socialist education movement in the rural areas, launched on Chairman Mao's instructions, was a revolution on the political and ideological fronts, a deeper development of the socialist revolution in the rural areas in new historical conditions. In connection with this great revolutionary mass movement, too, a fierce struggle took place between Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line and the bourgeois reactionary line of China's Khrushchev.
The proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao found concentrated expression in two great Marxist-Leninist documents drawn up under his personal leadership. They are The Decision of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China on Some Problems in Current Rural Work (that is, the ten-point decision) and Some Current Problems Raised in the Socialist Education Movement in the Rural Areas (that is, the 23-article document).
According to Chairman Mao's line, it is imperative to "grasp the class struggle as the key, grasp the struggle between the road of socialism and the road of capitalism as the key" to resolve " the contradiction between socialism and capitalism."
According to Chairman Mao's line, it is imperative to "rely on the working class, the poor and lower-middle peasants, the revolutionary cadres, the revolutionary intellectuals, and other revolutionaries, and pay attention to uniting more than 95 percent of the masses and more than 95 percent of the cadres," in order to "wage a sharp, tit-for-tat struggle against the capitalist and feudal forces which are wildly attacking us."
According to Chairman Mao's line, "the main target of the present movement is those within the Party who are in authority and are taking the capitalist road." "Of those in authority taking the capitalist road, some act on the stage while the others operate from behind the scenes." Supporting these persons in authority "there are certain people at the higher levels—at the commune, district, county, prefecture, and even at the provincial level and in the central departments—who are opposed to building socialism."
This Marxist-Leninist line hit the handful of top capitalist roaders in the Party headed by China's Khrushchev where it hurt and destroyed their fond dream of restoring capitalism. Finding the situation unfavourable, they resorted to counterrevolutionary double-faced tactics, took over the slogans of the socialist education movement, and dished up a bourgeois reactionary line which was "Left" in form but Right in essence.
The one who stepped forward first was another top Party person in authority taking the capitalist road. That villain always colluded with China's Khrushchev in opposing the socialist revolution in the rural areas. He had participated in the big effort to cut down the number of cooperatives and in advocating the San Zi Yi Bao. And now he stepped forward once again. Just about four months after the "ten-point decision" on the great socialist education movement was published, he hurriedly concocted a "second ten-point decision (draft)" in direct opposition to the "ten-point decision."
Using the counterrevolutionary method of "removing the burning brands from under the boiling cauldron," the "second ten-point decision (draft)" negated the essential content of the struggle between the two classes and between the two roads and completely discarded the line, principles, and policies concerning the socialist education movement which Chairman Mao had explicitly formulated in the "ten-point decision." On the pretext of setting out clear-cut "criteria for implementing specific policies," it used a hundred and one devices to absolve the capitalist forces in the rural areas, tie the masses hand and foot, and in every way protect the agents of the bourgeoisie within the Party. On the pretext of conducting "socialist education," it directed the spearhead of the struggle against the poor and lower-middle peasants. In producing this monstrous poisonous weed, that other top capitalist roader in the Party tried in vain to carry out the bourgeois reactionary line to stamp out the revolutionary flames of the socialist education movement which Chairman Mao himself had lit. This is just one of the many towering crimes perpetrated by that other top capitalist roader in the Party in opposing socialism and trying to restore capitalism.
Following this closely, China's Khrushchev arranged for his wife Wang to go down and "work at a selected spot" and concoct her notorious "experience at the Taoyuan production brigade." He then brazenly advertised this "experience" and peddled it all over the country. He even hatched a "revised draft" of the "second ten-point decision (draft)," after altering and polishing this up in accordance with that "experience." This typical expression of the bourgeois reactionary line, "Left" in form and Right in essence, was a reactionary programme in opposition to Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line.
In producing this bourgeois reactionary line which was "Left" in form and Right in essence, China's Khrushchev was plotting to usurp the leadership of the socialist education movement and lead this great revolutionary movement astray. This was a big conspiracy hatched by him to savagely suppress the poor and lower-middle peasants and wrest power from the proletariat. For a time, in some places under his control and under the pernicious influence of this line, "Left" in form but Right in essence, quite a few poor and lower-middle peasants were branded "counterrevolutionaries" and stripped of their power. Serious damage was thus done to the fine fruits of the socialist education movement conducted under the guidance of Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line.
China's Khrushchev went to great lengths to bypass the cardinal issue of the contradiction between socialism and capitalism; instead, he glibly defined the nature of the socialist education movement as being "the contradiction between being clean and being unclean on the four questions" [politics, ideology, organization, and the economy— Tr.], and "the intertwining of the contradictions inside the Party, or the intertwining of the contradictions between the enemy and ourselves on the one hand, and of the contradictions among the people on the other," and so on and so forth. In playing this deceitful trick, China's Khrushchev wanted, firstly, to make the revolutionary people forget about the class struggle of the proletariat against the bourgeoisie and forget about the dictatorship of the proletariat, and, secondly, to direct the spearhead against the masses of poor and lower-middle peasants and against the large number of good and comparatively good cadres, so as to protect the handful of capitalist roaders in the Party from being exposed. It was a most vicious scheme.
China's Khrushchev was mortally afraid that the broad revolutionary masses and revolutionary cadres would be truly aroused and would grasp Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line and the Party's principles and policies. For this would mean exposure for his hirelings. Therefore, he chose the Kuomintang method of "tutelage" to suppress the masses, strike at the revolutionary cadres, and take all the spirit out of the movement in a futile attempt to clamp the lid tight on the class struggle and turn the socialist education movement into a mere formality.
In the final analysis, the purpose of China's Khrushchev and his partners in writing off the struggle between the two roads, suppressing the masses, and striking at the revolutionary cadres was to muddy the waters, confuse the class line-up, shift the target of the struggle, and strike at the many, in order to shield the capitalist readers in the Party and shield themselves.
This bourgeois reactionary line produced by China's Khrushchev, which was "Left" in form and Right in essence, was a line for bringing the socialist education movement into the orbit of capitalist restoration, a line for disintegrating the dictatorship of the proletariat and turning it into a dictatorship of the bourgeoisie.
As soon as this line was put forward, it met with resistance and opposition from the revolutionary masses and from broad sections of the revolutionary cadres. The publication of the historic "23-article document," which had been drawn up under Chairman Mao's personal leadership, announced the bankruptcy of this bourgeois reactionary line. Guided by Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line, the socialist education movement achieved great successes. The capitalist forces in the rural areas suffered telling blows. The people's communes were further consolidated and the positions of socialism in the rural areas were further strengthened. And the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution that followed has carried the movement of the socialist revolution in the rural areas forward to a completely new stage.
TAKE "FIGHT SELF-INTEREST, REPUDIATE REVISIONISM" AS THE KEY, CARRY THE STRUGGLE BETWEEN THE TWO ROADS IN THE COUNTRYSIDE THROUGH TO THE END
Closely following the great helmsman Chairman Mao, the 500 million Chinese peasants have successfully navigated past hidden reefs and dangerous shoals, overcome evil winds and dense fogs, and sailed along the socialist course in brilliant struggles over the last 18 years.
The history of the struggle between the two roads and the two lines in the rural areas during these 18 years has provided us with extremely rich experience. The following are among the most important points:
First, "socialist society covers a fairly long historical stage. In this stage, classes, class contradictions, and class struggle continue; the struggle between the socialist road and the capitalist road continues; and the danger of capitalist restoration remains." Since the overthrown landlords and rich peasants are never reconciled to their doom and are always attempting a comeback, and since the influence of the bourgeoisie, the force of habit of the old society, and the spontaneous tendency of the small producers towards capitalism continue to exist in society, the class struggle in the rural areas has always been very complex and sharp, and extremely fierce at every turning point in history. The struggle between Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line and the bourgeois reactionary line of China's Khrushchev on the question of socialist revolution in the countryside is precisely the concentrated reflection of this struggle inside the Party. In order to persevere along the socialist road, the broad masses of poor and lower middle peasants and revolutionary cadres must carry the struggle between the two lines inside the Party through to the end, thoroughly criticize and repudiate the bourgeois reactionary line of China's Khrushchev, and liquidate its pernicious influence.
Second, the fundamental question in all revolutions is the question of political power. In the final analysis, the struggle between the two roads and between the two lines in the rural areas is the struggle between the consolidation of the dictatorship of the proletariat and its subversion. In order to attain their criminal aim of subverting the dictatorship of the proletariat under the new historical conditions of this dictatorship, the class enemy invariably adopts the methods of causing corruption, division, and demoralization; of pulling out our cadres or sneaking into our ranks; and of using both soft and hard tactics in seeking agents inside the Party. The handful of capitalist roaders in the Party are the principal and most dangerous enemies of the broad masses of poor and lower-middle peasants. And China's Khrushchev is their behind-the-scenes boss. The bourgeois reactionary line he obstinately pushed in the rural areas was a most important component of his counterrevolutionary scheme for restoring capitalism in China and turning over the dictatorship of the proletariat into the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. Should we permit the handful of capitalist roaders in the Party to usurp state power, we would go backward and again be plunged into our old sufferings.
Third, after the realization of agricultural coopereration, the socialist revolution is not yet completed on the economic front. The struggle between the consolidation of collective ownership and the attempt to sabotage it remains an outstanding question. The enforcement of the San Zi Yi Bao on a large scale was an important measure adopted by the class enemy to corrode and disintegrate the socialist system of collective ownership. The proletariat and the poor and lower-middle peasants must use the tremendous power of the dictatorship of the proletariat to consolidate and develop the socialist system of collective ownership so as to take the road of a common prosperity.
Fourth, the broad masses of poor and lower-middle peasants are our social basis in the rural areas for the building of socialism. They are the force on which we rely for realizing the dictatorship of the proletariat in the rural areas. In order to restore capitalism in the rural areas, China's Khrushchev always persevered in the bourgeois class line of reliance on the landlords, rich peasants, counterrevolutionaries, bad elements, and Rightists to hit at the poor and lower-middle peasants. We must act in opposition to this and persevere in the proletarian class line of reliance on the poor and lower-middle peasants and unity with the middle peasants throughout the historical period of socialism, so that the seals of power are held in the firm grip of those who persevere along the socialist road.
Fifth, "the serious problem is the education of the peasantry." "The basic task of political work" of the Party in the countryside "is constantly to imbue the peasant masses with a socialist ideology and to criticize the tendency towards capitalism." But China's Khrushchev desperately tried to hit at the socialist initiative of the peasants and put material incentives into active operation; he did his utmost to induce and utilize the spontaneous tendency toward capitalism, in order to serve the restoration of capitalism. It was a grave struggle to win leadership over the peasants in the ideological sphere. The peasant masses and the revolutionary cadres must place proletarian politics to the fore, persist in putting Mao Tse-tung's thought in command, and vigorously fight bourgeois "self-interest" while relentlessly repudiating the revisionism of China's Khrushchev, so as gradually to root out revisionism.
For 18 years, China's Khrushchev stubbornly stuck to his bourgeois reactionary stand, took the poor and lower-middle peasant masses as his enemy, and made trouble, failed, made trouble again, failed again till the current Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution brought about his doom. His bourgeois reactionary line against the socialist revolution in the countryside is likewise being swept into the dustbin of history.
The struggle between the two roads and the two lines in the countryside must be carried through to the end. The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in the vast countryside must be carried through to the end in the direction pointed out by Chairman Mao.
Let the great red banner of Mao Tse-tung's thought fly high forever over China's countryside!
1. "Instructions to An Tzu-wen and Others." ,23 January 1950.
3. “Letter to Seventh Elder Sister," 2 May 1950.
4. "Instructions to An Tzu-wen and Others."
5. "On the Question of Land Reform," 14 June 1950.
6. "Instructions to An Tzu-wen and Others."
8. Speech at a Session of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, 4 November 1951.
9. "Comment on the Report Submitted by the Shansi Provincial Party Committee: 'Raise the Mutual Aid Organizations in the Old Liberated Areas to a Higher Level,' " 3 July 1951.
10. '"Speech at the Conference on Propaganda Work, 7 May 1951.
11. "Speech to Cadres Going to the Grassroots Level, 18 July 1962.
12. "Instructions on the Question of Prohibiting the Buying of Goods 'Through the Back Door,' " 22 October 1961.
13. "Speech, June 1962.
Posted: 2009-03-14 07:07 |
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