26th December is the day Chairman Mao was born
On this occasion I would like to post an article
by Comrade Harsh Thakor
a research scholar based in Mumbai
Achievements of Mao Tse Tung
The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution that was launched in China on May 16th 1966 wrote a historical epoch in the history of mankind. This was initiated by Comrade Mao Tse Tung to defeat the revisionists and create a ground for the ultimate triumph for Socialism. Mao discovered that even in a Socialist State there were capitalist elements who intended to turn the country to the capitalist road. From the example of the U.S.S R he learnt that a Socialist State can turn into a Social-Imperialist or Revisionist state and there can be a restoration of Capitalism. Stalin saved the Socialist State but he hardly made an effective attempt to democratize the Socialist State and initiate broad based mass movements.
True there were great achievements for workers but Stalin hardly gave attention to the superstructure and even violated Democratic Centralism to a great extent. Mao called for a revolt within his own party against the capitalist roaders Liu Shao Chi and Deng Xiaoping who opposed Mao’s line and felt that it was better to be ‘expert’ than ‘red.’ They advocated that profit from production should be the chief goal and opposed communization of land ,professing that peasants should get a private plot. What Sparked of the Cultural revolution was a play called “Hai Jui removed from office’ which defended Peng Te Huai who was removed from the Chinese Army for supporting ranks ,modernization against Communistic policies,and supporting the U.S S R. On 16th May 1966 Mao drafted a circular issued by the Central Committee alerting cadres against the revisionistsMao introduced a 16 points programme and finally gave a call to his followers the ‘Red Guards’ to ‘Bombard the Headquarters.
These were encompassing a broad-based revolutionary democratic programme explaining the masses to be daring above everything else and boldly arouse the masses,let the masses educate themselves in the movement through making the biggest use of big character posters and great debates to argue matters out so that masses can clarify theright and wrong views.It also stressed on applying the classs line of the party,correctly handling the contradictions amongst the people,be on guard against counter-revolutionaries discriminate cadres between good cadres ,those who have made serious mistakes and those who are anti-party or anti-Socialist.It was stressed that the anti-party rightists must be fully exposed, refuted or overthrown but at the same time be given the chance to turn over a new leaf.The programme went on to stress the importance of Cultural Revolutionary Group, committees and Congress’s. Another Important point stressed was educational reform where the old system of education would be completely transformed.
The other points were the question of criticizing by name in the press, policies towards Scientists, technicians and ordinary members of working staffs, question of arrangements of integration with the Socialist Education System and Countryside, stimulating production from a revolutionary perpective,revolutionizing the armed forces and finally establishing Mao Tse Tung Thought as the guide to action in the Cultural Revolution.
On May 25th at the Peking University a big poster was pasted up at Peking University which was the first big ‘Marxist LeninistIt attacked 2 corrupt university officials. Who negated the Cultural Revolution buy curbing mass initiative. The big character poster lit a flame in the hearts of the masses. Character Poster.’
2. ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE CULTURAL REVOLUTION
1. A de-centralized medical system creating Barefoot doctors. The Medical field made the most innovative changes. A worker’s fingers being replaced occurred, something unheard of even in Developed countries. Applying Mao’s line the broken bones were attached Etc.In no third world country before did medicine serve the poor peasantry to that extent.
2.Stopping examinations in schools and colleges and making students learn from the peasants and workers as well as participating in productive labour. Now it was the peasants and workers who taught the students. Factories were attached to schools so that students would learn science from production. In the villages students would learn about agriculture and peasants would explain them their problems and about production.
3.Enabling workers to be masters of Marxist Leninist philosophy through study in factory school which enabled workers to build their own machines and run their own factories.
4..Revolutionary committees launched where the workers and peasants democratic rights were represented. There were 3 in one committees. These were far more effective than the committees in factories in Western Style Democracies. Workers and peasants.
5.The Army served the people doing work like construction, building canals and rotated the jobs of Workers and peasants. They were politically enlightened and trained about the role of revolution and history and politics in connection to Marxism Leninism. The Army defended and protected the mass movements unlike bourgeois states. Ranks were abolished in the military.
6 revolutionizing the Agricultural Communes through mass movements and introducing piecemeal wage system.Tachai is the best Example as well as Shanghai.
7.There were mass rallies where the broad masses could print big character posters. The C.P.C. was never afraid of disorder. “Great Debates’ and anti-Rightist campaigns were held. The masses could voice their demands to punish corrupt officials, oppose bureaucraticsm, fight for press freedom and for democratic Rights. They had the four great ‘freedoms ‘of speaking out Freely, airing views folly, holding great debates, and writing big character posters.
8.A Revolutionary Democratic Army that always stood by the peoples Movements. The Army represented the heart and the soul of the broad masses being based from the basic classes. Once the Cultural Revolution started in earnest, the Army was not allowed to intervene in what emerged as a civil war between the various factions of Red Guards and Red Rebels. The PLA was ordered by Mao to "support the left" by standing aside, even when their arsenals were looted by the civilian combatants.
When the chaos reached its climax, when the Party was in disarray and the economy had come to a virtual standstill, the Army appeared to be the only functioning organization left, and Mao turned to the PLA to restore order. As a result, the PLA emerged from the chaos with greatly increased position and power: senior Army men headed the newly-formed revolutionary committees responsible for local administration; almost half of the Central Committee members elected in 1969 were soldiers; and half of the State Council members in 1971 belonged to the PLA. Ranks were abolished in the Peoples Liberation Army. The Army had to participate in the production in factories and help the peasants in production. They were involved in digging the Countryside, transporting grain and all kinds of furniture on carts, leading Children in drills a school.
All forms of hierarchy and paternalism were removed. A soldier recognized his commanding officer just like a revolutionary committee obeyed it’s leader. Inspite of that the Peoples Liberation Army was recognized as the most disciplined. The Army was indoctrinated with Mao’s thought and taught to support the liberation Struggles of the masses all over the world. The virtues of the Chinese Revolution were explained and nation chauvinism was totally opposed in the teachings. In the Cultural Revolution upheavals the Army always stood by the Revolutionary Committees Army controlled instances when Red Guard Group rivalry took place or civilians were attacked.
Only when factional non –revolutionary tendencies take place did the Army intervene. (An Ultra –left trend took place caused by a certain Red Guard faction) Army in the world. Another feature of the Cultural Revolution was the emphasis on studying Marxist Philosophy. (Taken from Daily life in Revolutionary China Once Lin Biao fell from grace in 1971 and his supporters were purged, the PLA's model function as the "great school of Mao Thought" ceased to be stressed. Instead, the close relations between the Army and the people were propagated once more ("as close as fish and water"). Foreigners were taken to a unit of the P.L.A to learn about the study of the Thought of Mao Tse Tung.The soldiers worked on farms to feed themselves and helped commune members when they needed help.
9.Great Innovations in the field of Art and literature representing the proletariat.
Below are a compilation or collection of notes compiled from a book ‘Daily Life in Revolutionary China’ by a member of the Italian Communist Party Maria Macciocci who visited Socialist China in the heyday of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution which elaborate the points I discussed.
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