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 Tso Chia-fa —An Example of the Communist Spirit

Tso Chia-fa —An Example of the Communist Spirit

Tso Chia-fa, whose wife was tragically killed in an auto accident, is a cadre in an air force hospital in Shanghai. When the accident occurred, Tso acted according to the teachings of the great leader Chairman Mao to "be more concerned about the Party and the masses than about any individual, and more concerned about others than about himself," and "fight self and repudiate revisionism." He selflessly put aside personal grief and wholeheartedly implemented Chairman Mao's series of latest instructions for carrying out the great proletarian cultural revolution. He did not harbour any personal animosity against the driver responsible for the death of his wife but, on the contrary, showed profound proletarian feeling for this class brother whom he helped and encouraged politically. This fully shows his boundless loyalty to the great leader Chairman Mao. It expresses the breadth of vision and lofty communist spirit of revolutionary fighters armed with the thought of Mao Tse-tung.  And it reflects the new, high level attained by the masses of commanders and fighters of the People's Liberation Army in creatively studying ad applying the thought of Mao Tse-tung, in fighting self-interest and repudiating revisionism and in revolutionizing their ideology. — Ed.


At about 11 o'clock in the morning of December 15 last year, Tso Chia-fa was at a meeting when a comrade ran in shouting: "Old Tso! Your wife has been knocked down by a lorry!"
 This was a bolt out of the blue. He rushed to the casualty ward. The political commissar of the hospital was there with the doctors who were already working to save Tso's wife.
 What should he do in the face of this disaster? He recalled Chairman Mao's teaching: "Our point of departure is ... to proceed in all cases from the interests of the people and not from one's self-interest or from the interests of a small group . . ." Yes, thought Tso, no matter how great is the misfortune one may meet, it is a small thing when compared to our revolutionary cause—and in dealing with this disaster, I must not start from self-interest, but from the interests of the people.
 An anxious crowd had gathered outside the emergency ward, waiting—leaders of the revolutionary mass organizations of the lorry team involved in the accident and responsible comrades of the lorry depot, the transport company and the communications and transport bureau.
 Tso Chia-fa was very moved by the concern shown by these proletarian revolutionary comrades. They had many heavy responsibilities at this stage of the great proletarian cultural revolution.   Yet, here they were, so worried about his wife and himself. He felt uneasy in his mind.
   When they grasped his hands and said "We're terribly sorry for . . . " he interrupted them. "Thank you all", he said. "I promise you that I'll never let ' this mar the relations like those of fish to water that exist between the army and the people. Let us all act as Chairman Mao teaches us." He opened his Quotations From Chairman Mao Tse-tung and together they read the passage: "We hail from all corners of the country and have joined together for a common revolutionary objective". These words made Tso Chia-fa and all the other comrades feel very close.
 Then a nurse came out. "Comrade Cheng Yu-chih (Tso's wife) is. ... " She could not finish the sentence.
 Tso Chia-fa and Cheng Yu-chih were comrades very close to each other and had been married for nearly 10 years. Her death was a great shock to him but at this moment of grief Tso Chia-fa recalled Chairman Mao's great teaching: "A communist should... be more concerned about the Party and the masses ) than about any individual, and more concerned about others than about himself.” He thought of Norman Bethune, whose utter devotion to others without any thought of self had always been a source of inspiration to him. He remembered the last words of the heroic platoon leader Li Wen-chung: "Don't worry about me. Save the Red Guards!" As these thoughts flashed through his mind, Tso Chia-fa felt full of new strength.  "Don't feel sorry for me", he said. "Our most important task at the moment is to devote all our energy to following closely Chairman Mao's great strategic plan and carrying the great proletarian cultural revolution through to the end. No matter what happens we must always be loyal to Chairman Mao, we must be thoroughgoing proletarian revolutionaries".
 He added: "What's happened has happened, and nothing can alter it. Don't blame the driver too much. He must be very upset, and so must those comrades over at the depot. I'll go and see them soon".
 He took out of his pocket some shining badges with the portrait of Chairman Mao and pinned one on each comrade's chest.
 All were moved to tears by this veteran revolutionary fighter armed by Mao Tse-tung's thought, who was utterly devoted to others without any thought of self. With tears in their eyes, they all shouted: "Long live the great Chinese People's Liberation Army!" "Long live the great leader Chairman Mao! A long, long life to him!"
 The lorry driver, Lo Chang-kuei, was a member of a revolutionary rebel organization. He had been born in a family that suffered bitter oppression before liberation. After the accident, he felt the deepest sorrow and remorse and went to the public security bureau in person to ask for punishment.
 When Tso Chia-fa learnt of this, he said to himself: "Not only my wife and daughter, but all proletarian revolutionaries, are near and dear to me. And Comrade Lo Chang-kuei is one of them. Through carelessness he knocked down my wife. But it was a single momentary fault. I should help him draw the lessons from his fault so that he can serve the people better in the future. On no account should I treat a class brother as an enemy".
 At home that night Tso sat looking through his wife's copies of the Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung and Quotations From Chairman Mao Tse-tung. She had read them so often. ... He was torn with emotion. He recalled Chairman Mao's teaching: "All people in the revolutionary ranks must care for each other, must love and help each other". Suddenly he knew what he should do—he should take these treasured books to Comrade Lo Chang-kuei tomorrow as a gift.
 Early the next morning, through the freezing winter air, he went straight to the depot of the Shanghai transport company. The revolutionary staff and workers thronged around and showered expressions of sympathy on him. A meeting was called to "hold high the great red banner of Mao Tse-tung's thought and learn from the People's Liberation Army".
 Amidst loud applause, Tso Chia-fa spoke. "Comrades", he said, "I have lost one dear to me and my heart is heavy, but we must not let that affect us in carrying on the struggle against the handful of capitalist roaders inside the Party. Comrade Lo Chang-kuei and other proletarian revolutionaries and I are all revolutionary fighters educated by the great leader Chairman Mao. Army and people, we must unite to form a Great Wall of steel, follow Chairman Mao's great strategic plan closely and carry the great proletarian cultural revolution through to the end". Then he pressed the treasured books into the hands of Lo Chang-kuei and said to him: "Mao Tse-tung's thought is as essential to a revolutionary as the steering wheel is to a driver. My only wish is that you will creatively study and apply Chairman Mao's works, fight self and repudiate revisionism and follow Chairman Mao in making revolution all your life!"
 Words failed Lo Chang-kuei. He wept as he embraced Tso Chia-fa. After a long while he said: "I'm grateful to Chairman Mao, grateful to him for bringing up a noble man like you. I'll always remember the lesson I've learnt from this tragic accident, and creatively study and apply Chairman Mao's works. I'll fight self-interest and repudiate revisionism and try to be a model in grasping revolution and promoting production".
 The two class brothers, both of whom had suffered deeply in the old society, again fell into silence. Words could not express their deep class feeling for Chairman Mao and for each other. The whole meeting burst into cheers of "Long live Chairman Mao!" and the one thousand people present sang with great emotion,

Great as are the heavens and earth, what we owe to the Party is greater.
Dear as are father and mother, Chairman Mao is dearer.
Fine as many things are, socialism is finer.
Deep as the rivers and oceans are, proletarian love is deeper.

 The next day, Tso Chia-fa and his daughter, the only child, went to see Lo Chang-kuei and gave him a portrait of Chairman Mao.
 The whole Lo family was deeply moved. Lo said: "How can I show how grateful I am to you? . . ." Before he had finished, Tso Chia-fa broke in: "Don't thank me but our great leader Chairman Mao who taught me what to do. We are class brothers. We will help each other in the future in the creative study and application of Chairman Mao's works. We must follow Chairman Mao in revolution all our lives".
 Gratitude to Chairman Mao filled the hearts of not only the two class brothers, but also of the many neighbours who had heard the story and came to see them.

A grey-haired woman said: "In all my 70 years and more I have never seen the likes of this! We have to thank Chairman Mao for his leadership. The P.LA men taught by him are truly the sons of the people."

Young Red Guards said that they would resolutely learn from the P.L.A. and always bear in mind Chairman Mao's teachings.

Peking Review, No. 15, 12 April 1968, Transcribed by www.wengewang.org

  
  
  

 
 
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