“The theoretical victory of Marxism compelled its enemies to disguise themselves as Marxists.”
– V.I. Lenin
Mao Zedong deserves his place in the hall of the fame of the greatest revisionists of all time, right alongside Bakunin, Bernstein, DeLeon, Kautsky, Togliatti, Trotsky, Browder, Tito, Khrushchev, Brezhnev, Gorbachev, Kim Jong-Il, Nagy, Dubček, Deng Xiaoping, Ceaușescu and Sam Webb.
“[Maoism] was proclaimed as the highest stage of Marxism-Leninism in the present era. The Chinese leaders have declared that ‘Mao Tsetung has achieved more than Marx, Engels, and Lenin…’ The Constitution of the Communist Party of China, approved at its 9th Congress, which was held under Mao Tsetung’s leadership, says that ‘Mao Tsetung thought is the Marxism-Leninism of the era … ‘, that Mao Tse-tung “….has inherited, defended and developed Marxism-Leninism and has raised it to a new, higher stage”. Basing the activity of the party on [Maoism] instead of on the principles and norms of Marxism-Leninism opened the doors even more widely to opportunism and factional struggle within the ranks of the Communist Party of China. [Maoism] is an amalgam of views in which ideas and theses borrowed from Marxism are mixed up with idealist, pragmatic and revisionist principles from other philosophies.”
– Enver Hoxha (Imperialism and Revolution).
“And when [CIA officer William Colby was] asked why the Chinese were backing the FNLA or UNITA, he stated: ‘Because the Soviets are backing the MPLA is the simplest answer.”
“It sounds,” said Congressman Aspin, “like that is why we are doing it.”
“It is,” replied Colby.
– From William Blum’s “Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II”
“I welcome Nixon’s winning the election.”
–Mao Zedong, December 18th, 1970.
“One of our policies now is refusing to let Americans visit China. Is this policy correct? The Ministry of Foreign Affairs should study it. Leftists, moderates and rightists should all be approved to come to China. Why the rightists? [...] The reason is that the moderates and leftists are unable to solve any problem, and right now we must straighten things out with Nixon. We have to let him come as a matter of course.”
MAO — DEFENDER OF STALIN?
In his talk to the Stalin Society in October, Adolfo Olaechea stated that:
“The Communist Party of China under his (Mao’s — Ed.) personal leadership was the most staunch defender of the historical role of Comrade Stalin”.
(Adolfo Olaechea: op. cit.; p. 18).
In fact, after the 20th Congress of the CPSU in February 1956 the Communist Party of China’s assessment of Stalin was little different from that of Soviet revisionist leader Nikita Khrushchev:
“Stalin erroneously exaggerated his own role and counter-posed his individual authority to the collective leadership, and as a result certain of his actions were opposed to certain fundamental Marxist-Leninist concepts. . . .
When any leader of the Party or the state places himself over and above the Party and the masses, . . . he ceases to have an all-round, penetrating insight into the affairs of the state. As long as this was the case, . . . Stalin could not avoid making unrealistic and erroneous decisions on certain matters. . . . During the latter part of his life, Stalin took more and more pleasure in this cult of the individual and violated the Party’s system of democratic centralism and the principle of combining collective leadership with individual responsibility. As a result, . . . he gave certain wrong advice on the international communist movement and, in particular, made a wrong decision on the question of Yugoslavia. On these issues, Stalin fell victim to subjectivism and one-sidedness, and divorced himself from objective reality and from the masses.
The Chinese Communist Party congratulates the Communist Party of the Soviet Union on its great achievements in this historic struggle against the cult of the individual”.
(‘On the Historical Experience of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ (April 1956), in: ‘Renmin Ribao’ (People’s Daily)’, in: John Gittings: ‘Survey of the Sino-Soviet Dispute: A Commentary and Extracts from the Recent Polemics: 1963-1967″; London; 1968; p. 291-92, 293).
“Stalin made some serious mistakes in regard to the domestic and foreign policies of the Soviet Union. His arbitrary method of work impaired . . . the principle of democratic centralism . . . and disrupted part of the socialist legal system. Because in many fields of work Stalin estranged himself from the masses . . . and made personal, arbitrary decisions concerning many important policies, it was inevitable that he should have made grave mistakes. . . . He wronged many local communists and honest citizens, and this caused serious losses. . . . Sometimes he even intervened mistakenly, with many grave consequences, in the internal affairs of certain brother countries and parties. . . .
Some of the mistakes made by Stalin during the latter years of his life became serious, nationwide and persistent, and were not corrected in time. . . .
Stalin’s mistakes did harm to the Soviet Union which could have been avoided…
Stalin . . . committed the serious mistake of violating socialist democracy. . . .
Stalin displayed certain great-nation chauvinist tendencies in relations with brother parties and countries”.
(‘More on the Historical Experience of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ (December 1956), in: ‘Renmin Ribao’ (People’s Daily), in: John Gittings: ibid.; p. 298, 300, 301, 302, 303).
And in April 1956 Mao himself wrote:
“Stalin’s mistakes amounted to . . . 30% of the whole. Stalin did a number of wrong things in connection with China. The Left adventurism pursued by Wang Ming in the latter part of . . . the Second Revolutionary Civil War period and his Right opportunism in the early days of the War of Resistance against Japan can both be traced to Stalin”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘On the Ten Major Relationships’ (April 1956), in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 5; Peking; 1977; p. 304).
It will be seen that the Communist Party of China’s assessment of Stalin was incorrect and basically little different from that put forward by the Soviet revisionists.
Olaechea’s statement that:
“The Communist Party of China under his (Mao’s — Ed.) personal leadership was the most staunch defender of the historical role of Comrade Stalin”
(Adolfo Olaechea: op. cit.; p. 18).
is clearly false.
THE REVOLUTIONARY PROCESS IN COLONIAL-TYPE COUNTRIES
Mao Tse-tung agrees with Lenin and Stalin that in a colonial-type country such as China, the revolutionary process has to pass through two successive stages: the stage of democratic revolution and the stage of socialist revolution:
“The Chinese revolutionary movement . . . embraces two stages, i.e., the democratic and the socialist revolutions. The second process can be carried through only after the first has been completed”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party’ (December 1939), in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 2; Peking; 1965; p. 330).
In November 1994, Harry Powell addressed the Stalin Society on ‘Mao Tsetung — Revisionist or Revolutionary?’. He told the Society that our member Bill Bland in his paper entitled ‘The Revolutionary Process in Colonial-Type Countries’ read to the Marxist-Leninist seminar in London in July 1993 had ‘agreed with Trotsky in rejecting the two-stage theory of the revolutionary process in colonial-type countries’.
This allegation is quite false.
Bill Bland said:
“Trotskyism …… rejects as ‘counter-revolutionary opportunism’ the Marxist-Leninist strategy of stages in the revolutionary process in colonial-type countries”.
(Bill Bland: ‘The Revolutionary Process in Colonial-Type Countries’ London; 1993; p.5)
MAOIST ‘PEACEFUL TRANSITION TO SOCIALISM’
But in regard to the second stage of the revolutionary process, Mao Tse-tung deviates from Lenin and Stalin. The latter insist that the socialist stage of the revolutionary process involves a fierce class struggle against the bourgeoisie:
“The substitution of the proletarian state for the bourgeois state is impossible without a violent revolution”.
(Vladimir I. Lenin: ‘The State and Revolution: The Marxist Doctrine of the State and the Tasks of the Proletariat in the Revolution’ (August/September 1917), in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 7; London; 1946; p. 21).
“Can the capitalists be ousted without a fierce class struggle?
No, they cannot. . . .
There have been no cases in history where the dying bourgeoisie has not exerted all its remaining strength to preserve its existence”.
(Josef V. Stalin: ‘The Right Deviation in the CPSU (b)’ (April 1929), in: ‘Works’, Volume 12; Moscow; 1955; p. 34, 40).
While Lenin and Stalin present the second (socialist) stage of the revolutionary process as one of struggle against the national bourgeoisie, Mao Tse-tung maintains that the contradiction between the working class and the national bourgeoisie in China is a contradiction ‘among the people’ which can be ‘resolved peacefully’ because the Chinese national capitalists are willing to accept socialist transformation’:
“In our country the contradiction between the working class and the national bourgeoisie comes under the category of contradictions among the people. . . . In the period of the socialist revolution, exploitation of the working class for profit constitutes one side of the character of the national bourgeoisie, while . . . its willingness to accept socialist transformation constitutes the other. . . . The contradiction between the national bourgeoisie and the working class is one between exploiter and exploited. . . . But in the concrete conditions of China, this antagonistic contradiction between the two classes, if properly handled can . . . be resolved by peaceful methods.”
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘On the Correct Handling of Contradictions among the People’ (February 1957) in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 5; Peking; 1977; p. 386).
Mao goes on to explain that by the ‘correct handling’ of the contradiction — handling which can bring about its ‘peaceful resolution’ -he means the:
(Mao Tse-tung: ibid.; p. 403).
of the national bourgeoisie.
But this conception of the bourgeoisie being ‘ideologically remoulded’ into ‘willingness to accept socialism’ and so refraining from class struggle against it is clearly analogous to the thesis of the revisionist Nikolay Bukharin of the Russian capitalists ‘growing into socialism’. On this conception Stalin comments:
“Capitalists in town and country . . . growing into socialism — such is the absurdity Bukharin has arrived at . . . .
Either Marx’s theory of the class struggle, or the theory of the capitalists growing into socialism;
either an irreconcilable antagonism of class interests, or the theory of the harmony of class interests. . . .
The abolition of classes . . . by the capitalists growing into socialism — such is Bukharin’s formula.”
(Josef V. Stalin: ‘The Right Deviation in the CPSU (b)’; (April 1929), in: ‘Works’, Volume 12; Moscow; 1955; p. 32, 33, 36).
MAO — DEFENDER OF THE DICTATORSHIP OF THE PROLETARIAT?
Lenin and Stalin maintain that the construction of socialism is impossible without the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat:
“The transition from capitalism to communism will certainly create a great variety and abundance of political forms, but in essence there will inevitably be only one: the dictatorship of the proletariat“.
(Vladimir I. Lenin: ‘The State and Revolution: The Marxist Doctrine of the State and the Tasks of the Proletariat in the Revolution’ (August 1917), in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 7; London; 1946; p. 34).
“The revolution will be unable to crush the resistance of the bourgeoisie, to maintain its victory and to push forward too the final victory of socialism unless . . . it creates a special organ in the form of the dictatorship of the proletariat as its principal mainstay”.
(Josef V. Stalin: ‘The Foundations of Leninism’ (April/May 1924), in: ‘Works’, Volume 6; Moscow; 1953; p. 112).
“The Communist Party of China under his (Mao’s — Ed.) personal leadership was the most staunch defender of . . . the dictatorship of the proletariat”.
(Adolfo Olaechea: op. cit.; p. 18).
This claim is false.
Mao Tse-tung insists that the goal for progressive people in all colonial-type countries should be the establishment, not of the dictatorship of the proletariat, but of the joint dictatorship of several anti-imperialist classes, including the national bourgeoisie:
“The new-democratic revolution . . . is developing in all other colonial and semi-colonial countries as well as in China. . . . Politically, it strives for the joint dictatorship of the revolutionary classes”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party (December 1939), in: ‘Selected Works’, in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 2; Peking; 1965; p.
Mao calls the national bourgeoisie of a colonial-type country the ‘middle bourgeoisie’:
“The middle bourgeoisie constitutes the national bourgeoisie as distinct from the comprador class”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘Current Problems of Tactics in the Anti-Japanese United Front’ (March 1940), in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 2; Peking’ 1865; p. 423).
– the comprador class being that section of the bourgeoisie closely linked and dependent upon foreign imperialism.
The classes said to share power in this ‘new-democratic’ joint dictatorship include the national bourgeoisie, the petty bourgeoisie and even that section of the landlord class which is willing to participate in the new democratic state (i. e., that section which Mao calls ‘the enlightened gentry’):
“Places in the organs of political power should be allocated as follows: one-third to . . . the proletariat and the poor peasantry; one third to . . . the petty-bourgeoisie, and the remaining one-third to . . the middle bourgeoisie and the enlightened gentry”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘Current Problems of Tactics in the Anti-Japanese United Front’ (March 1940), in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 2; Peking’ 1865; p. 427).
This ‘new-democratic republic’ thus admittedly differs from the dictatorship of the proletariat:
“The new-democratic republic will be . . . different from the socialist republic of the Soviet type under the dictatorship of the proletariat”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘On New Democracy’ (January 1940), in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 2; Peking; 1965; p. 350).
It is characterised as ‘a state of the whole people’:
“Our state is a people’s democratic dictatorship. . . . . The aim of this dictatorship is to protect all our people”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘On the Correct Handling of Contradictions among the People’ (February 1957) in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 5; Peking; 1977; p. 387).
Far from suppressing the Chinese bourgeoisie, the ‘new-democratic republic’ will permit its political parties to exist over a long period of time:
“Why should the bourgeois and petty bourgeois democratic parties be allowed to exist . . . over a long period of time? . . . Because it is . . the policy of the Communist Party”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ibid,.; p. 413).
and will permit the Chinese bourgeoisie freely to express its ideology:
“It is inevitable that the bourgeoisie and petty bourgeoisie will give expression to their own ideologies. It is inevitable that they will stubbornly assert themselves on political and ideological questions by every possible means. You cannot expect them, to do otherwise. We should not use the method of suppression and prevent them from expressing themselves, but should allow them to do so.”
(Mao Tse-tung: ibid.; p. 411).
Indeed, Mao demands that the Communist Party, in this ‘people’s democratic dictatorship’, should adopt a policy of ‘free competition’ in all fields, including that of political ideology:
“What should our policy be towards non-Marxist ideas? . . . Will it do to ban such ideas and deny them any opportunity for expression? Certainly not. . . .
Literally, the two slogans — let a hundred flowers blossom and let a hundred schools of thought contend — have no class character: the proletariat can turn them to account, and so can the bourgeoisie”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ibid.; p. 410, 412).
Far from suppressing the Chinese bourgeoisie, the ‘new-democratic state’ will permit its political parties to exist over a long period of time:
“Why should the bourgeois and petty bourgeois democratic parties be allowed to exist . . . over a long period of time? . . . Because it is the policy of the Communist Party to exist side by side with the democratic parties for a long time to come”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ‘On the Correct Handling of Contradictions among the People’ (February 1957) in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 5; Peking; 1977; p. 413).
Certainly, Mao speaks of the importance of:
“the leadership of the Communist Party”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ibid.; p. 412).
but in the new-democratic republic this leadership is to be shared with the bourgeois parties on the basis of ‘mutual supervision’:
“Mutual supervision . . . means that the Communist Party can exercise supervision over the democratic parties, and vice versa. Why should the democratic parties be allowed to exercise supervision over the Communist Party? . . . Supervision over the Communist Party is mainly exercised by the working people and the Party membership. But it augments the benefit to us to have supervision by the democratic parties too”.
(Mao Tse-tung: ibid.; p. 414).
The Chinese revisionists’ conception of ‘socialism’ is one in which only the enterprises of the comprador capitalists are nationalised, while ‘those of the national capitalists are gradually and peacefully transformed into ‘socialist’ enterprises in alliance with the national bourgeoisie, through state capitalism, using the machinery of the ‘new-democratic state”:
” In our country . . . . . we can proceed with our step by step socialist transformation by means of the existing machinery of state. . . . . We have in our country a relationship of alliance between the working class and the national bourgeoisie. . . .
The socialist transformation of capitalist industry and commerce by the state will be gradually realised over a relatively long period of time, through various forms of state capitalism. . . .
The aim can be achieved through peaceful struggle”.
(Liu Shao-chi: Report on the Draft Constitution of the People’s Republic of China at the First National People’s Congress of the PRC (September 1954); Peking; 1962; p. 27).
“Under the conditions existing in our country, the use of peaceful means, i.e., the method of persuasion and education, can change capitalist ownership into socialist ownership”.
(Mao Tse-tung: Speech at Supreme State Conference (January 1956), in: Kuan Ta-tung: ‘The Socialist Transformation of Capitalist Industry and Commerce in China’; Peking; 1960; p 40-41).
The method of transforming the enterprises of the Chinese national capitalists into ‘socialist’ enterprises was through the formation of joint state-private enterprises:
“The advanced form of state capitalism in China is called a joint state-private enterprise. This is the principal way through which the transformation of capitalist industry and commerce into socialist enterprises is being effected.
A joint state-private enterprise is one in which the state invests and to which it assigns personnel to share in management with the capitalists. . . .
A fixed rate of interest was paid by the state for the total investment of the capitalists in the joint state-private enterprises.
The interest was fixed at 5% per annum”.
(Kuan Ta-tung: ibid,; p. 75, 84., 86-87).
The Chinese national capitalists not only had no objection to this form of socialist transformation, they welcomed it:
“Why were there increasing numbers of capitalists who petitioned of their own free will to have their enterprises changed over to joint state-private operation? . . . The statistics of 64 factories in various parts of China which had gone over to joint operation earlier than others revealed that their profits were increasing. Taking their profit in 1950 as 100, it was . . . 306 in 1953. . . . The capitalists paraded with the beating of cymbals and drums, while sending in their petitions for the change-over of their enterprises”.
(Kuan Ta-tung: ibid.; p. 78-79, 84).
The completion in 1956 of this programme of formation of joint-state private enterprises was later portrayed by the Chinese revisionists as ‘the completion of the socialist revolution’:
“The socialist revolution in the ownership of the means of production was fundamentally completed in 1956″.
(Chou En-lai: Report on the Work of the Government (December 1964), in: ‘Main Documents of the First Session of the Third National Congress of the People’s Republic of China’; Peking; 1965; p. 26).
“Socialist relations of production have been established”.
(Mao Tse-tung: op. cit.;p. 394).
while the new-democratic state (previously defined as the state of ‘a class alliance which included the national bourgeoisie’) was now portrayed as a state of ‘the dictatorship of the proletariat’, as ‘socialist state power’:
“The dictatorship of the proletariat in our country rests on firm foundations and our socialist state power is unshakeable”.
(Chou En-lai: op. cit.; p. 28).
But behind this false facade of ‘socialism’, as Mao himself admits, the reality was that the Chinese national bourgeoisie continued to exploit the working class:
“In joint state-private industrial and commercial enterprises, capitalists still get a fixed rate of interest on their capital, that is to say, exploitation still exists”.
(Mao Tse-tung: op. cit.; p. 394).
FUNDAMENTALIST AND MODERNIST MAOISM
Most systems of religious belief are based on writings regarded as ‘sacred’, and most of these were written long ago. But as man’s knowledge of the universe increases, it is discovered that these ancient writings appear to conflict with fact.
In this situation, some people realise that their religious belief was mere superstition and become atheists. Of those who retain their religious belief, some insist that the writings, being sacred, are infallibly true, so that their appearance of falsity must be a mere illusion: we call such people fundamentalists; others admit that the writings cannot be accepted as literal truth, but can be accepted as allegorical truth: we call such people modernists.
Maoism has its fundamentalists and its modernists.
As history made Maoism untenable except to those whose prejudices overrode their reason, genuine materialists came to realise that Maoism was merely a brand of revisionism. Among other Maoists, Fundamentalist and Modernist trends appeared.
Adolfo Olaechea belongs to the Fundamentalist wing of Maoism. Like the well-meaning young people of twenty-five years ago who could be seen on demonstrations waving Mao’s ‘Little Red Book’ like a holy symbol, Olaechea still insists that:
“Maoism is the Marxism-Leninism, of our era”.
(Adolfo Olaechea: op. cit.; p. 30).
And whereas, as we have seen, the facts show that Maoism itself is a form of revisionism serving the interests of national bourgeoisies in colonial-type countries, the Maoist fundamentalist Olaechea clings to the illusion that:
“. . . THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF CHINA, LED BY CHAIRMAN MAO TSE-TUNG, UNMASKED AND SMASHED MODERN REVISIONISM”,
(Adolfo Olaechea: op. cit.; p. 16).
Harry Powell, who spoke at the November meeting of the Stalin Society, is on the other hand a Modernist Maoist.
Powell made no bones about admitting that Dimitrov had been a thorough-going revisionist and even admitted that Mao had been a revisionist ‘to some extent’.
This view of Mao was expressed in May 1981 in a joint ‘Defence of Mao’ put forward by three German organisations. Their declaration agreed that the writings of Mao Tse-tung:
“. . . prior to 1966 do not make clear that the transition from the democratic revolution to the socialist revolution must be politically in line with the transition from the dictatorship of all anti-imperialist and anti-feudal classes and forces to the dictatorship of the proletariat. It is clear … that he even regarded as possible the construction of socialism in political alliance with the bourgeoisie. All these views are incompatible with the teachings of Marxism-Leninism and in fact they represent support for the Khrushchevite revisionists in establishing the idea of class collaboration between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie in the international communist movement. . . . . . .
Mao Tse-tung upheld various seriously revisionist positions”.
(JOINT DECLARATION OF ‘ROTE FAHNE’ (Red Flag), ‘WESTBERLINER KOMMUNIST’ (The West Berlin Communist) and ‘GEGEN DIE STROMUNG’ (Against the Current), in: ‘Compass’, No. 114 (July 1994); p. 4, 10).
Despite these severe strictures, the German organisations, like Harry Powell, seek to defend Mao as a ‘Marxist-Leninist’ by suggesting that the ‘Cultural Revolution’ which he initiated in the 1960s ‘seems to have been an attempt to correct some of his errors’:
“To make a correct evaluation of Mao Tse-tung, it is essential to analyse his role in the Cultural Revolution and his struggle with Teng Hsaio-ping before his death. It seems that Mao Tse-tung recognised some of his errors in this period and tried to correct them”.
(JOINT DECLARATION: ibid.; p. 10).
Certainly the ‘Cultural Revolution’ was fought out under anti-revisionist slogans:
“The official explanation of the cultural revolution is that it was the final battle in a long-term struggle between two lines: the correct Maoist line and the revisionist line upheld by ‘China’s Khrushchev’, . . . . Liu Shao-chi”.
(Roderick Macfarquahar: ‘The Origins of the Cultural Revolution’, Volume 1; London; 1974; p. 2).
However, the true character of the ‘Cultural Revolution’ has been brilliantly analysed by the Albanian Marxist-Leninist Enver Hoxha:
“The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution was neither a revolution, nor great, nor cultural, and, in particular, not in the least proletarian”.
(Enver Hoxha: ‘Imperialism and the Revolution’ (April 1978), in: ‘Selected Works’, Volume 5; Tirana; 1985; p. 655).
According to Hoxha, it was a struggle between two revisionist factions within the Chinese Communist Party — headed respectively by Mao Tse-tung and Liu Shao-chi:
“The Chinese ‘Cultural Revolution’ was a factional fight between the group of Mao and that of Liu Shao-chi. Neither the working class . . . nor the peasantry . . . took part in it”.
(Enver Hoxha: ‘The Chinese Strategy is suffering Fiasco’ (December 1976), in: ‘Reflections on China’, Volume 2; Tirana; p. 391).
At the time of the onset of the ‘Cultural Revolution’, the leadership of the the Communist Party of China was pursuing an anti-imperialist political line, directed in particular against US imperialism:
“US imperialism is the chief bulwark of world reaction and an international gendarme..
The international proletariat must and can . . . establish the broadest united front against the US imperialists and their lackeys”.
(Central Committee of the Communist Party of China: Letter in Reply to the Letter of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union of March 30, 1963 (June 1963), in: ‘A Proposal concerning the General Line of the International Communist Movement’; Peking; 1963; p. 12).
In 1966, the Party and state machinery of China were dominated by the anti-American faction headed by Liu Shao-chi:
“The Party had slipped from his (Mao’s — Ed.) grasp. Everything there was in the grip of the General Office, which Liu Shao-chi had firmly in his grasp”.
(Enver Hoxha: ‘What is the General Office in China?’ (September 1977), in: op. cit.; p. 621).
However, the faction headed by Mao, which had become:
“the pro-American faction”,
(Enver Hoxha: ‘It seems that the Pro-American Faction will triumph’ (January 1977), in: op. cit.; p. 400).
“. . . wanted to establish links with the Americans. . . . . This is how the ‘Cultural Revolution’ began”.
(Enver Hoxha: ‘Chinese Puzzle, Maoist Confusion’ (February 1976), in: ibid.; p, 225).
In these circumstances:
” . . . Mao was left with only one course: he had to seize power again. In order to do this, he had to rely on the ‘romantic’ youth who ‘worshipped’ Mao, and on Lin Piao, whom he made his deputy — that is, he had to rely on the army”.
(Enver Hoxha: ‘Neither the Party nor the State of the Proletariat are operating in China’ (June 1970), in: ibid.; p. 254-55).
In the course of this ‘Cultural Revolution’:
“the Party was liquidated”.
(Enver Hoxha: ‘The Chinese are not propagating the Correct Line of our Party’ (January 1976), in: ibid.; p. 209).
Thus, in no way can the ‘Cultural Revolution’ be considered as an attempt by Mao to correct his revisionist mistakes. It was a factional struggle between the anti-US faction within the Party headed by Liu Shao-chi and the pro-US faction headed by Mao Tse-tung. The victory of the latter was followed by Nixon’s visit to China, Chinese support for the Shah of Iran and the US backed FNLA/UNITA in Angola, the Chinese loan to the Chilean junta of Pinochet, etc.
So, if we judge Maoism on the basis of facts and not on that of mere prejudice and wishful thinking, it is clear that MAOISM IS A BRAND OF REVISIONISM DESIGNED TO SERVE THE NATIONAL CAPITALISTS OF COLONIAL-TYPE COUNTRIES BY CHECKING THE REVOLUTIONARY PROCESS AT THE STAGE OF NATIONAL-DEMOCRATIC REVOLUTION AND PREVENTING IT FROM GOING FORWARD TO THE STAGE OF SOCIALIST REVOLUTION.
“MAO TSE-TUNG THOUGHT” – AN ANTI-MARXIST THEORY
By Enver Hoxha
The present situation in the Communist Party of China, its many zig-zags and wavering, opportunist stands, the frequent changes of its strategy, the policy the Chinese leadership has been and is following to make China a superpower, quite naturally raise the problem of the place and role of Mao Tse-tung and his ideas, the so-called Mao Tse-tung thought, in the Chinese revolution.
“Mao Tse-tung thought” is a “theory” devoid of the features of Marxism-Leninism. All the Chinese leaders, both those who were in power before and those who have seized power today, have always made great play with the “Mao Tse-tung thought,” in their forms of organization and ways of action, their strategic and tactical aims, in order to put their counterrevolutionary plans into practice. Seeing the dubious activity, wavering and contradictory stands, the lack of principles and the pragmatism of Chinese internal and external policy, its deviation from Marxism-Leninism and the use of left phrases to disguise it, we Albanian Communists have gradually formed our opinions and conviction about the danger presented by “Mao Tse-tung thought.” When our Party was founded, during the National Liberation War, as well as after Liberation, our people had very little knowledge about China. But, like all the revolutionaries of the world, we, too, had formed an opinion that it was progressive: “China is a vast continent. China is fighting, the revolution against foreign imperialism, against concessions is seething in China”, etc., etc.
We had some general knowledge about the activity of Sun Yat-sen, about his connections and friendship with the Soviet Union and with Lenin; we knew something about the Kuomintang, about the Chinese people’s war against the Japanese and about the existence of the Communist Party of China, which was considered a great party, with a Marxist-Leninist, Mao Tse-tung, at the head. And that was all.
Our Party had closer contacts with the Chinese only after 1956. The contacts steadily increased due to the struggle our Party was waging against Khrushchevite modern revisionism. At that time our contacts with the Communist Party of China, or more accurately, with its leading cadres, became more frequent and closer, especially when the Communist Party of China, too, entered into open conflict with the Khrushchevite revisionists. But we have to admit that in the meetings we had with the Chinese leaders, although they were good, comradely meetings, in some ways, China, Mao Tse-tung and the Communist Party of China, remained a great enigma to us.
But why were China, its Communist Party and Mao Tse-tung an enigma? They were an enigma because many attitudes, whether general ones or the personal attitudes of Chinese leaders, towards a series of major political, ideological, military, and organizational problems vacillated, at times to the right, at times to the left. Sometimes they were resolute and at times irresolute, there were times, too, when they maintained correct stands, but more often it was their opportunist stands that caught the eye. During the entire period that Mao was alive, the Chinese policy, in general, was a vacillating one, a policy changing with the circumstances, lacking a Marxist-Leninist spinal cord. What they would say about an important political problem today they would contradict tomorrow. In the Chinese policy, one consistent enduring red thread could not be found.
Naturally, all these attitudes attracted our attention and we did not approve them, but nevertheless, from what we knew about the activity of Mao Tse-tung, we proceeded from the general idea that he was a Marxist-Leninist. On many of Mao Tse-tung’s theses, such as that about the handling of the contradictions between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie as non-antagonistic contradictions, the thesis about the existence of antagonistic classes during the entire period of socialism, the thesis that “the countryside should encircle the city”, which absolutizes the role of the peasantry in the revolution, etc., we had our reservations and our own Marxist-Leninist views, which, whenever we could, we expressed to the Chinese leaders. Meanwhile, certain other political views an stands of Mao Tse-tung and the Communist Party of China, which were not compatible with the Marxist-Leninist views and stands of our Party, we considered as temporary tactics of a big state, dictated by specific situations. But, with the passage of time, it became ever more clear that the stands maintained by the Communist Party of China were not just tactics.
By analysing the facts, our Party arrived at some general and specific conclusions, which made it vigilant, but it avoided polemics with the Communist Party of China and Chinese leaders, not because it was afraid to engage in polemics with them, but because the facts, which it had about the erroneous, anti-Marxist course of this party and Mao Tse-tung himself, were incomplete, and still did not permit the drawing of a final conclusion. On the other hand, for a time, the Communist Party of China did oppose US imperialism and reaction. It also took a stand against Soviet Khrushchevite revisionism, though it is now clear that its struggle against Soviet revisionism was not dictated from correct, principled Marxist-Leninist positions.
Besides this, we did not have full knowledge about the internal political, economic, cultural, social life, etc. in China. The organization of the Chinese party and state have always been a closed book to us. The Communist Party of China gave us no possibility at all to study the forms of organization of the Chinese party and state. We Albanian communists knew only the general outlines of the state organization of China and nothing more; we were given no possibilities to acquaint ourselves with the experience of the party in China, to see how it operated, how it was organized, in what directions things were developing in different sectors and what these directions were concretely.
The Chinese leaders have acted with guile. They have not made public many documents necessary for one to know the activity of their party and state. They were and are very wary of publishing their documents. Even those few published documents at our disposal are fragmentary.
The four volumes of Mao’s works, which can be considered official, are comprised of materials written no later than 1949, but besides this, they are carefully arranged in such a way that they do not present an exact picture of the real situations that developed in China. The political and theoretical presentation of problems in the Chinese press, not to speak of literature, which was in utter disarray had only a propaganda character. The articles were full of typically Chinese stereotyped formulas expressed arithmetically, such as “the Three Goods and the Five Evils”, “the Four Olds and Four News”, “the Two Reminders and Five Self-controls”, “the Three Truths and Seven Falses”, etc., etc. We found it difficult to work out the “theoretical.” sense of these arithmetical figures, because we are used to thinking, acting and writing according to the traditional Marxist-Leninist theory and culture.
The Chinese leaders did not invite any delegation from our Party to study their experience. And when some delegation has gone there on our Party’s request, the Chinese have engaged in propaganda and taken it here and there for visits to communes and factories rather than give it some explanation or experience about the work of the party. And towards whom did they maintain this strange stand? Towards us Albanians, their friends, who have defended them in the most difficult situations. All these actions were incomprehensible to us, but also a signal that the Communist Party of China did not want to give us a clear picture of its situation.
But what attracted our Party’s attention most was the Cultural Revolution, which raised a number of major questions in our minds. During the Cultural Revolution, initiated by Mao Tse-tung, astonishing political, ideological and organizational ideas and actions came to light in the activity of the Communist Party of China and the Chinese state, which were not based on the teachings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin. In judging their previous dubious actions, as well as those observed during the Cultural Revolution, and especially the events following this revolution up till now, the rises and falls of this or that group in the leadership, today the group of Lin Piao, tomorrow that of Teng Hsiao-ping, a Hua Kuo-feng, etc., each of which had its own platform opposed to the other’s, all these things impelled our Party to delve more deeply into the views and actions of Mao Tse-tung and the Communist Party of China, to get a more thorough knowledge of “Mao Tse-tung thought” When we saw that this Cultural Revolution was not being led by the party but was a chaotic outburst following a call issued by Mao Tse-tung, this did not seem to us to be a revolutionary stand. It was Mao’s authority in China that made millions of unorganized youth, students and pupils, rise to their feet and march on Peking, on party and state committees, which they dispersed. It was said that these young people represented the “proletarian ideology” in China at that time and would show the party and the proletarians the “true” road!
Such a revolution, which had a pronounced political character, was called a cultural revolution. In our Party’s opinion, this name was not accurate, since, in fact, the movement that had burst out in China was a political, not a cultural movement. But the main thing was the fact that neither the party nor the proletariat were in the leadership of this “great proletarian revolution”. This grave situation stemmed from Mao Tse-tung’s old anti-Marxist concepts of underestimation of the leading role of the proletariat and overestimation of the youth in the revolution.
“What role did the Chinese young people begin to play since the ‘May 4th Movement’? In a way they began to play a vanguard role – a fact recognised by everybody in our country except the ultra-reactionaries. What is a vanguard role? It means taking the lead…”
Thus the working class was left on the sidelines, and there were many instances when it opposed the red guards and even fought them. Our comrades, who were in China at that time, have seen with their own eyes factory workers fighting the youth. The party was disintegrated. It was liquidated, and the communists and the proletariat were totally disregarded. This was a very grave situation.
Our Party supported the Cultural Revolution, because the victories of the revolution in China were in danger. Mao Tse-tung himself told us that power in the party and state there had been usurped by the renegade group of Liu Shao-chi and Teng Hsiao-ping and the victories of the Chinese revolution were in danger. In these conditions, no matter who was to blame that matters had gone so far, our Party supported the Cultural Revolution.
Our Party defended the fraternal Chinese people, the cause of the revolution and socialism in China, and not the factional strife of anti-Marxist groups, which were clashing and fighting with one another, even with guns, in order to seize power.
The course of events showed that the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution was neither a revolution, nor great, nor cultural, and in particular, not in the least proletarian. It was a palace putsch on an all-China scale for the liquidation of a handful of reactionaries who had seized power.
Of course, this Cultural Revolution was a hoax. It liquidated both the Communist Party of China, and the mass organizations and plunged China into new chaos. This revolution was led by non-Marxist elements, who have been liquidated through a military putsch staged by other anti-Marxist and fascist elements.
In our press Mao Tse-tung has been described as a great Marxist-Leninist, but we never used and never approved the definitions of the Chinese propaganda which described Mao as a classic of Marxism-Leninism, and “Mao Tsetung thought” as its third and higher stage. Our Party has considered the inflation of the cult of Mao Tse-tung in China to be incompatible with Marxism-Leninism.
The chaotic development of the Cultural Revolution and its results further strengthened the opinion, still not fully crystallized, that Marxism-Leninism was not known and was not being applied in China, that in essence, the Communist Party of China and Mao Tse-tung did not hold Marxist-Leninist views, regardless of the facade and the slogans they used about “the proletariat, its dictatorship, and its alliance with the poor peasantry”, and many other such shibboleths.
In the light of these events, our Party began to look more deeply into the causes of the vacillations which had been observed in the stand of the Chinese leadership towards Khrushchevite revisionism, such as the instance in 1962, when it sought reconciliation and unity with the Soviet revisionists, allegedly in the name of a common front against American imperialism, or in 1964, when, continuing the efforts for reconciliation with the Soviets, Chou En-lai went to Moscow to hail the coming to power of the Brezhnev group. These vacillations were not accidental. They reflected the lack of revolutionary principles and consistency. When Nixon was invited to China, and the Chinese leadership, with Mao Tse-tung at the head, proclaimed the policy of rapprochement and unity with American imperialism, it became clear that the Chinese line and policy were in total opposition to Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism. Following this, China’s chauvinist and hegemonic ambitions began to become clearer. The Chinese leadership started to oppose the revolutionary and liberation struggles of the peoples, the world proletariat, and the genuine Marxist-Leninist movement more openly. It proclaimed the so-called theory of the “three worlds”, which it was trying to impose on the entire Marxist-Leninist movement as its general line.
For the sake of the interests of the revolution and socialism, and thinking that the mistakes observed in the line of the Communist Party of China were due to incorrect assessments of situations and to various difficulties, the Party of Labour of Albania has tried, more than once, to help the Chinese leadership correct and overcome them. Our Party has openly expressed its views, in a sincere and comradely way, to Mao Tse-tung and other Chinese leaders, and on many of China’s actions which directly affected the general line of the Marxist-Leninist movement, the interests of the peoples and revolution, it has made its remarks and disagreement known to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China officially and in writing welcomed to correct and principled remarks of our Party. It has never replied to them and has never agreed even to discuss them. Meanwhile the anti-Marxist actions of the Chinese leadership at home and abroad became more flagrant and more obvious. All this compelled our Party, like all the other Marxist-Leninists, to reappraise the line of the Communist Party of China, the political and ideological concepts by which it has been guided, its concrete activity and its consequences. As a result we saw that Mao Tse-tung thought, by which the Communist Party of China has been and is being guided, represents a dangerous variant of modern revisionism, against which an all-round struggle on the theoretical and political plane must be waged.
“Mao Tse-tung thought” is a variant of revisionism, which began to take shape even before the Second World War, especially after 1935, when Mao Tse-tung came to power. In this period Mao Tse-tung and his supporters launched a “theoretical” campaign under the slogan of the struggle against “dogmatism”, “ready-made patterns”, “foreign stereotypes”, etc., and raised the problem of elaborating a national Marxism, negating the universal character of Marxism-Leninism. Instead Of Marxism-Leninism he preached the “Chinese way” of treating problems, and the Chinese style
“…. lively and fresh, pleasant to the ears and eyes of the Chinese people”
in this way propagating the revisionist thesis that in each country Marxism should have its individual, specific content.
“Mao Tse-tung thought” was proclaimed as the highest stage of Marxism-Leninism in the present era. The Chinese leaders have declared that
“Mao Tse-tung has achieved more than Marx, Engels, and Lenin…”.
The Constitution of the Communist Party of China, approved at its 9th Congress, which was held under Mao Tse-tung’s leadership, says that
“Mao Tse-tung thought is the Marxism-Leninism of the era … “
that Mao Tse-tung
“….has inherited, defended and developed Marxism-Leninism and has raised it to a new, higher stage”.
Basing the activity of the party on “Mao Tse-tung thought” instead of on the principles and norms of Marxism-Leninism opened the doors even more widely to opportunism and factional struggle within the ranks of the Communist Party of China. “Mao Tse-tung thought” is an amalgam of views in which ideas and theses borrowed from Marxism are mixed up with idealist, pragmatic and revisionist principles from other philosophies.
It has its roots in ancient Chinese philosophy, and in the political and ideological past, in the state and militarist practice of China. All the Chinese leaders, those who have taken power at present as well as those who have been in and who have fallen from power, but who have manoeuvred to put their counterrevolutionary plans into practice, have had and have “Mao Tse-tung thought” as their ideological basis. Mao Tse-tung himself has admitted that his thoughts can be exploited by all, both by the leftists and the rightists, as he calls the various groups that comprise the Chinese leadership. In the letter he wrote to Chiang Ching on July 8, 1966, Mao Tse-tung affirms,
“the rightists in power might use my words to make themselves powerful for a certain time, but the left can use other words of mine and organize itself to overthrow the rightists”(Le Monde dec. ’72).
This shows that Mao Tse-tung was not a Marxist-Leninist, that his views are eclectic. This is apparent in all Mao’s “theoretical works” which, although camouflaged with “revolutionary” phraseology and slogans, cannot conceal the fact that “Mao Tse-tung thought” has nothing in common with Marxism-Leninism.
A critical survey of Mao’s writings, even of part of them, of the way he treats the fundamental problems concerning the role of the communist party, the questions of the revolution, the construction of socialism, etc., makes the radical difference between “Mao Tse-tung thought” and Marxism-Leninism completely clear. Let us first consider the question of the organization of the Party and its leading role. Mao pretended to be for the application of the Leninist principles on the party, but if his ideas on the party and, especially, the practice of the life of the party are analysed concretely, it becomes evident that he has replaced the Leninist principles and norms with revisionist theses.
Mao Tse-tung has not organized the Communist Party of China on the basis of the principles of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin. He has not worked to make it a party of the Leninist type, a Bolshevik party. Mao Tse-tung was not for a proletarian class party, but for a party without class restrictions. He has used the slogan of giving the party a mass character in order to wipe out the distinction between the party and the class. As a result, anybody could enter or leave this party whenever he liked. On this question “Mao Tse-tung thought” is identical with the views of the Yugoslav revisionists and the “Eurocommunists”.
Besides this, Mao Tse-tung has always made the building of the party, its principles and norms dependent on his political stands and interests, dependent on his opportunist, sometimes rightist and sometimes leftist, adventurist policy, the struggle among factions, etc.
There has been and there is no true Marxist-Leninist unity of thought and action in the Communist Party of China. The strife among factions, which has existed since the founding of the Communist Party of China, has meant that a correct Marxist-Leninist line has not been laid down in this party, and it has not been guided by Marxist-Leninist thought. The various tendencies which manifested themselves among the main leaders of the party were at times leftist, at times right opportunist, sometimes centrist, and going as far as openly anarchist, chauvinist and racist views. During the whole time Mao Tse-tung and the group around him were at the head of the party, these tendencies were among the distinctive features of the Communist Party of China. Mao Tse-tung himself has advocated the need for the existence of “two lines” in the party. According to him, the existence and struggle between two lines is something natural, is a manifestation of the unity of the opposites, is a flexible policy which unites in itself both loyalty to principles and compromise.
“Thus,” he writes, “we have two hands to deal with a comrade who has made mistakes: one hand to struggle with him and the other to unite with him. The aim of this struggle is to uphold the principles of Marxism, which means being principled; that is one aspect of the problem. The other aspect is to unite with him. The aim of unity is to offer him a way out, to reach a compromise with him”.
These views are diametrically opposed to the Leninist teachings on the communist party as an organized vanguard detachment which must have a single line and steel unity of thought and action.
The class struggle in the ranks of the party, as a reflection of the class struggle going on outside the party, has nothing in common with Mao Tsetung’s concepts on the “two lines in the party”. The party is not an arena of classes and the struggle between antagonistic classes, it is not a gathering of people with contradictory aims. The genuine Marxist-Leninist party is the party of the working class only and bases itself on the interests of this class. This is the decisive factor for the triumph of the revolution and the construction of socialism. Defending the Leninist principles on the party, which do not permit the existence of many lines, of opposing trends in the communist party, J. V. Stalin emphasized:
” … the communist party is the monolithic party of the proletariat, and not a party of a bloc of elements of different classes.”
Mao Tse-tung, however, conceives the party as a union of classes with contradictory interests, as an organization in which two forces, the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, the “proletarian staff” and the ,”bourgeois staff”, which must have their representatives from the grassroots to the highest leading organs of the party, confront and struggle against each other. Thus, in 1956, he sought the election of the leaders of right and left factions to the Central Committee, presenting to this end, arguments as naive as they were ridiculous.
“The entire country,” he says, “the whole world knows well that they have made mistakes in the line and the fact that they are well known is precisely the reason for electing them. What can you do about it? They are well known, but you who have made no mistakes or have made only small ones don’t have as big a reputation as theirs. In a country like ours with its very large petty-bourgeoisie they are two standards.”
While renouncing principled struggle in the ranks of the party, Mao Tse-tung played the game of factions, sought -compromise with some of them to counter some others and thus consolidate his own positions. With such an organizational platform, the Communist Party of China has never been and never Could be a Marxist-Leninist party. The Leninist principles and norms were not respected in it. The congress of the party, its highest collective organ, has not been convened regularly. For instance, 11 years went by between the 7 th and the 8th congresses. and after the war, 13 years between the 8th and the 9th congresses. Besides this, the congresses which were held were formal, more parades than working meetings. The delegates to the congresses were not elected in conformity with the Marxist-Leninist principles and norms of the life of the party, but were appointed by the leading organs and acted according to the system of permanent representation.
Recently, “Renmin Ribao” published an article by a so-called theoretical group oil the “General Directory” of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China. (Always Keep in Mind the Teachings of Chairman Mao - Sept. ’77) This article says that under the name of the “General Directory”, Mao had set up around himself a special apparatus which kept the Political Bureau, the Central Committee of the Party, the cadres of the state, the army, the security service, etc., under surveillance and control. Entry to this Directory and knowledge of its work was forbidden to all, including the members of the Central Committee and the Political Bureau. Here plans for the bringing down or elevation of this or that factionalist group were worked out. The men of this Directory were present everywhere, they eaves-dropped, watched, and reported independently, outside the control of the party. Apart from them, this Directory had at its disposal entire armed detachments, hidden under the name of the “Guard of Chairman Mao”. This praetorian guard more than 50,000 strong went into action whenever the chairman wanted “to act with one blow”, as has frequently occurred in the history of the Communist Party of China and as occurred recently with the arrest of “The Four” and their supporters by Hua Kuo-feng. Under the pretext of maintaining contacts with the masses, Mao Tse-tung had also created a special network of informers among the population who were charged with the task of keeping the cadres of the base under surveillance and investigating the conditions and state of mind of the masses, without anybody’s knowledge. They reported directly to Mao Tse-tung alone, who had severed all means of communication with the masses and saw the world only through the reports of his agents of the “General Directory”. Mao said,
“For myself, I am a person who does not listen to the radio, either foreign or Chinese, but 1 only transmit.”
He also said,
“I have stated openly that 1 shall no longer read the newspaper ‘Renmin Ribao’. I told its Editor-in-chief ‘I do not read your paper’”. (From Mao conversation with comrades from our Party, Feb. 3, 1967. Central Archivals of the Party of Labour of Albania).
The article of “Renmin Ribao” provides new information which enables one to understand even more clearly the anti-Marxist direction and personal power of Mao Tse-tung in the Chinese party and state. Mao Tse-tung did not have the slightest respect for either the Central Committee or the congress of the party, let alone the party as a whole and its committees at the base. The party committees, the leading cadres and the Central Committee itself received orders from the “General Directory”, this “special staff”, which was responsible to Mao Tse-tung alone. The party forums, its elected organs, had no authority what~ soever. The article of “Renmin Ribao” says,
“no telegram, no letter, no document, no order could be issued by anybody without first going through Mao Tse-tung’s hands and being approved by him.”
It turns out that as early as 1953, Mao Tse-tung had issued a clear-cut order:
“From now on, all documents and telegrams sent out in the name of the Central Committee can be dispatched only after I have gone over them, otherwise they are invalid.”
Under these conditions there can be no talk of collective leadership, democracy within the party, or Leninist norms.
Mao Tse-tung’s unlimited power was so far-reaching that he even appointed his heirs. At one time he had appointed Liu Shao-chi as his successor. Later he declared that his heir to the state and the party after his death would be Lin Piao. This, a thing unprecedented in the practice of Marxist-Leninist parties, was even sanctioned in the Constitution of the party. Again it was Mao Tse-tung who designated Hua Kuo-feng to be chairman of the party after his death. Having power in his hands, Mao alone criticized, judged, punished and later rehabilitated top leaders of the party and state. This was the case even with Teng Hsiao-ping, who, in his so-called self-criticism of October 23, 1966, stated:
“Liu Shao-chi and I are real monarchists. The essence of my mistakes lies in the fact that I have no faith in the masses, do not support the revolutionary masses, but am opposed to them. I have followed a reactionary line to suppress the revolution. In the class struggle I have been on the side not of the proletariat, but of the bourgeoisie… All this shows that… I am unfit to hold posts of responsibility”. (From the self-criticism of Teng Hsiao-ping).
And despite these crimes which this inveterate revisionist has committed, he was put back in his former seat.
The anti-Marxist essence of “Mao Tse-tung thought” on the party and its role is also apparent in the way the relations between the party and the army were conceived in theory and applied in practice. Irrespective of the shibboleths of Mao Tsetung about the “party being above the army”, “politics above the gun”, etc. etc.. in practice, he left the main political role in the life of the country to the army. At the time of the war, he said,
“All the army cadres should be good at leading the workers and organizing trade-unions, good at mobilizing and organizing the youth, good at uniting with and training caeres in the newly Liberated Areas, good at managing industry and commerce, good at running schools, newspapers, news agencies and broadcasting stations, good at handling foreign affairs, good at handling problems relating to the democratic parties and people’s organizations, good at adjusting the relations between the cities and the rural areas and solving the problems of food, coal and other daily necessities and good at handling monetary and financial problems.”
So the army was above the party, above the state organs, above everything. From this it emerges that Mao Tse-tung’s words regarding the role of the party, as the decisive factor of the leadership of revolution and socialist construction, were only slogans. Both at the time of the liberation war and after the creation of the People’s Republic of China, in all the never-ending struggles that have been waged there for the seizure of power by one faction or the other, the army has played the decisive role. During the Cultural Revolution, too, the army played the main role; it was Mao’s last resort. In 1967, Mao Tse-tung said,
“We rely on the strength of the army… We had only two divisions in Peking, but we brought in another two in May in order to settle accounts with the former Peking Party Committee”. (From the conversation of Mao tsetung with the friendship Delegation of the PRA, dec. 18, 1967).
In order to liquidate his ideological opponents, Mao Tse-tung has always set the army in motion. He raised the army, with Lin Piao at the head, against the Liu Shao-chi and Teng Hsiaoping group. Later, together with Chou En-lai, he organized and threw the army against Lin Piao. Inspired by “Mao Tse-tung thought”, the army has played the same role even after the death of Mao. Like all those who have come to power in China, Hua Ktio-feng, also, relied on and acted through the army. Right after Mao’s death, he immediately roused the army, and together with the army men, Yeh Chien-ying, Wang Tung-lisin and others, engineered the putsch and arrested his opponents. Power in China is still in the hands of the army, while party tails behind it. This is a general characteristic of countries where revisionism prevails. Genuine socialist countries strengthen the army as a powerful weapon of the dictatorship of the proletariat in order to crush the enemies of socialism in case they rise up, as well as to defend the country from an eventual attack by the imperialists and foreign reaction. But, as Marxism-Leninism teaches us, for the army to play this role it must always be under the direction of the party and not the party under the direction of the army.
At present the most powerful factions of the army, the most reactionary ones, which aim to turn China into a social-imperialist country, are making the law in China.
In the future, along with the transformation of China into an imperialist superpower, the role and the power of the army in the life of the country will steadily increase. It will be strengthened as a praetorian guard, armed to the teeth, for the defence of a capitalist regime and economy. It will be the tool of a bourgeois capitalist dictatorship, a dictatorship which, if the people’s resistance is strong, may even assume open fascist forms.
By preaching the need for the existence of many parties in the leadership of the country, the so-called political pluralism, “Mao Tse-tung thought” falls into complete opposition to the Marxist-Leninist doctrine on the indivisible role of the communist party in the revolution and socialist construction. As he declared to E. Snow, Mao Tse-tung considered the leadership of a country by several political parties, after the American model, the most democratic form of government.
“Which is better in the final analysis,” Mao Tsetung asked, “to have just one party or several?”And he answered, “As we see it now, it’s perhaps better to have several parties. This has been true in the past and may well be so for the future; it means long-term coexistence and mutual supervision.”
Mao regarded the participation of bourgeois parties in the state power and the governing of the country with the same rights and prerogatives as the Communist Party of China as necessary. And not only this, but these parties of the bourgeoisie, which according to him “were historical”, should wither away only when the Communist Party of China also withers away, that is, they will coexist right up till communism.
According to “Mao Tse-tung thought”, a new democratic regime can exist and socialism can be built only on the basis of the collaboration of all classes and all parties. Sue a concept of socialist democracy, of the socialist political system, which is based on “long-term coexistence and mutual supervision” of all parties, and which is very much like the current preachings of the Italian, French, Spanish and other revisionists, is an open denial of the leading and indivisible role of the Marxist-Leninist party in the revolution and the construction of socialism. Historical experience has already proved that the dictatorship of the proletariat cannot exist and socialism cannot be built and defended without the indivisible leading role of the Marxist-Leninist party.
“…the dictatorship of the proletariat,” said Stalin, “can be complete only when it is led by a party, the party of the communists, which does not and should not share the leadership with other parties”. (Stalin)
The revisionist concepts of Mao Tse-tung have their basis in the policy of collaboration and alliance with the bourgeoisie, which the Communist Party of China has always applied. This is also the source of the anti-Marxist and anti-Leninist course of “letting 100 flowers blossom and 100 schools contend”, which is a direct expression of the coexistence of opposing ideologies.
According to Mao Tse-tung, in socialist society, side by side with the proletarian ideology, materialism and atheism, the existence of bourgeois ideology, idealism and religion, the growth of “poisonous weeds” along with “fragrant flowers”, etc., must be permitted. Such a course is alleged to be necessary for the development of Marxism, in order to open the way to debate and freedom of thought, while in reality, through this course, he is trying to lay the theoretical basis for the policy of collaboration with the bourgeoisie and coexistence with its ideology. Mao Tse-tung says,
“… it is a dangerous policy to prohibit people from coming into contact with the false, the ugly and the hostile to us, with idealism and metaphysics and with the thoughts of Confucius, Lao Tze and Chiang Kai-shek. It would lead to mental deterioration, one-track minds, and unpreparedness to face the world…”. (Mao)
From this Mao Tse-tung draws the conclusion that idealism, metaphysics and the bourgeois ideology will exist eternally, therefore not only must they not be prohibited, but they must be given the possibility to blossom, to come out in the open and contend. This conciliatory stand towards everything reactionary goes so far as to call disturbances in socialist society inevitable and the prohibition of enemy activity mistaken.
“In my opinion,” says he, “whoever wants to provoke trouble may do so for so long as he pleases; and if one month is not enough, he may go on for two, in short, the matter should not be wound up until he feels he has had enoucgh. If you hastily wind it up, sooner or later trouble will resume again”. (Mao)
All these have not been academic contributions to a -scientific- discussion but a counterrevolutionary opportunist political line which has been set up in opposition to Marxism-Leninism, which has disorganized the Communist Party of China, in the ranks of which a hundred and one views and ideas have been circulating and today there really are 100 schools contending. This has enabled the bourgeois wasps to circulate freely in the garden of 100 flowers and release their venom.
This opportunist stand on ideological questions has its roots, among other things, also in the fact that throughout the whole period from its foundation up till it achieved the liberation of its country and later, the Communist Party of China has made no effort to consolidate itself ideologically, has not worked to inculcate the theory of Marx, Engels. Lenin and Stalin into the minds and hearts of its members, has not struggled to master the fundamental questions of the Marxist-Leninist ideology and apply them consistently, step by step, in the concrete -conditions of China.
“Mao Tse-tung thought” is opposed to the Marxist-Leninist theory of revolution. In his writings Mao Tse-tung makes frequent mention of the role of revolutions in the process of the development of society, but in essence he adheres to a metaphysical, evolutionist concept. Contrary to materialist dialectics, which envisages progressive development in the form of a spiral, Mao Tse-tung preaches development in the form of a cycle, going round in a circle, as a process of ebb and flow which goes from equilibrium to disequilibrium and back to equilibrium again, from motion to rest and back to motion again, from rise to fall and from fall to rise, from advance to retreat and to advance again, etc. Thus, upholding the concept of ancient philosophy on the purifying role of fire, Mao Tse-tung writes:
“It is necessary to ‘set a fire going’ at regular intervals. How often? Once a year or once every three years, which do you prefer? I think we should do it at least twice in the space of every five years, in the same way as the intercalary month in a lunar leap year turns up once in three years or twice in five”. (Mao)
Thus like the astrologists of old, on the basis of the lunar calendar, he derives the law on the periodical kindling of fire, on the development which goes from “great harmony” to -great disorder- and again to “great harmony”, and thus the cycles repeat themselves periodically.
In this manner, “Mao Tse-tung thought” opposes the materialist dialectical concept of development, which, as Lenin says
“…gives us the key to understand the ‘self-movement’ of every existing thing;… gives us the key to understand the ‘leaps’, ‘the interruption of graduality’, ‘the transformation into the opposite’, the abolition of the old and the emergence of the new”, with the metaphysical concept which “is lifeless, pale and dry.”
This becomes even more obvious in the way Mao Tse-tung handles the problem of contradictions, to which, according to Chinese propaganda, Mao has allegedly made a “special contribution” and developed materialist dialectics further in this field. It is true that in many of his writings, Mao Tse-tung frequently speaks about opposites, contradictions, the unity of the opposites, and even uses Marxist quotations and phrases, but, nevertheless, he is far from the dialectical materialist understanding of these problems. In dealing with contradictions, he does not proceed from the Marxist theses, but from those of ancient Chinese philosophers, sees the opposites in a mechanical way, as external phenomena, and imagines the transformation of the opposites as a simple change of places between them. By operating with some eternal opposites taken from ancient philosophy, such as above and below, backward and forward, right and left, light and heavy, etc., etc., in essence Mao Tse-tung negates the internal contradictions inherent in things and phenomena and treats development as simple repetition, as a chain of unchangeable states in which the same opposites and the same relationship between them are observed. The mutual transformation of the opposites into each other, understood as a mere exchange of places and not as a resolution of the contradiction and a qualitative change of the very phenomenon which comprises these opposites, is used by Mao Tse-tung as a formal pattern to which everything is subject. On the basis of this pattern, Mao goes so far as to declare that “When dogmatism is transformed into its opposite, it becomes either Marxism or revisionism”, “metaphysics is transformed into dialectics, and dialectics into metaphysics”, etc. Behind such absurd assertions and this sophistical playing with opposites, lurk the opportunist and anti-revolutionary concepts of Mao Tse-tung. Thus, he does not see the socialist revolution as a qualitative change of society in which antagonistic classes and the oppression and exploitation of man by man are abolished, but conceives it as a simple change of places between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. To confirm this “discovery”, Mao writes:
“If the bourgeoisie and the proletariat cannot transform themselves into each other, how does it come that, through revolution, the proletariat becomes the ruling class and the bourgeoisie the ruled class?… We stand in diametrical opposition to Chiang Kai-shek’s Kuomintang. As a result of the mutual struggle and exclusion of the two contradictory aspects with the Kuomintang we changed places…”. (Mao)
This same logic has also led Mao Tse-tung to revise the Marxist-Leninist theory on the two phases of communist society.
“According to dialectics, as surely as a man must die, the socialist system as a historical phenomenon will come to an end some day, to be negated by the communist system. If it is asserted that the socialist system and the relations of production and superstructure of socialism will not die out, what kind of Marxist thesis would that be? Wouldn’t it be the same as a religious creed or theology that preaches an everlasting god?” (Mao)
In this way, openly revising the Marxist-Leninist concept of socialism and communism, which, in essence, are two phases of the one type, of the one socio-economic order, and which are distinguished from each other only by the degree of their development and maturity, Mao Tse-tung presents socialism as something diametrically opposite to communism.
From such metaphysical and anti-Marxist concepts, Mao Tse-tung treats the question of the revolution in general, which he regards as an endless process which is repeated periodically throughout the whole period of the existence of mankind on earth, as a process which goes from defeat to victory, from victory to defeat, and so on endlessly. Mao Tse-tung’s anti-Marxist concepts, sometimes evolutionist and sometimes anarchist, about the revolution are even more apparent when he deals with the problems of the revolution in China.
As emerges from his writings, Mao Tse-tung did not base himself on the Marxist-Leninist theory in analysing the problems and defining the tasks of the Chinese revolution. In his speech delivered at the enlarged working conference called by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, in January 1962, he himself admits:
“Our many years of revolutionary work have been carried out blindly, not knowing how the revolution should be, carried out, and against whom the spearhead of the revolution should be directed, without a concept of its stages, whom it had to overthrow first and whom later, etc.”
This has made the Communist Party of China incapable of ensuring the leadership of the proletariat in the democratic revolution and transforming it into a socialist revolution. The entire development of the Chinese revolution is evidence of the chaotic course of the Communist Party of China, which has not been guided by Marxism-Leninism, but by the anti-Marxist concepts of “Mao Tse-tung thought” on the character of the revolution, its stages, motive forces, etc.
Mao Tse-tung was never able to understand and explain correctly the close links between the bourgeois-democratic revolution and the proletarian revolution. Contrary to the Marxist-Leninist theory, which has proved scientifically that there is no Chinese wall between the bourgeois-democratic revolution and the socialist revolution, that these two revolutions do not have to be divided from each other by a long period of time, Mao Tse-tung asserted:
“The transformation of our revolution into socialist revolution is a matter of the future… As to when the transition will take place… it may take quite a long time. We should not hold forth about this transition until all the necessary political and economic conditions are present and until it is advantageous and not detrimental to the overwhelming majority of our people”. (Mao)
Mao Tse-tung adhered to this anti-Marxist concept, which is not for the transformation of the bourgeois-democratic revolution socialist revolution, during the whole period of the revolution, even after liberation. Thus, in 1940, Mao Tse-tung said:
“The Chinese revolution must necessarily pass through… the stage A New Democracy and then the stage of socialism. Of these, the first stage will need a relatively long time….”. (Mao)
In March 1949, at the plenum of Central Committee of the Party, at which Mao Tse-tung submitted the program for China’s development after liberation, he says:
“During this period all the elements of capitalism, of town and countryside, must be permitted to exist.”
These views and “theories” brought about that the Communist Party of China and Mao Tse-tung did not fight for the transformation of the revolution in China into a socialist revolution but left a free field for the development of the bourgeoisie and capitalist social relations.
On the question of the relationship between the democratic revolution and the socialist revolution, Mao Tse-tung takes the standpoint of the chiefs of the Second International, who were the first to attack and distort the Marxist-Leninist theory about the rise of the revolution and came out with the thesis that between the bourgeois-democratic revolution and the socialist revolution, there is a long period, during which the bourgeoisie develops capitalism and creates the conditions for the transition to the proletarian revolution. They regarded the transformation of the bourgeois-democratic revolution into socialist revolution, without giving capitalism the possibility to develop further, as something impossible, as skipping stages. Mao Tse-tung, too, fully endorses this concept, when he says:
“It would be a sheer utopia to try to build socialism on the ruins of the colonial, semi-colonial and semi-feudal order without a united new-democratic state, . . . without the development of the private capitalist economy…”. (Mao)
The anti-Marxist concepts of “Mao Tse-tung thought” about the revolution are even more obvious in the way Mao has treated the motive forces of the revolution. Mao Tse-tung did not recognize the hegemonic role of the proletariat. Lenin said that in the period of imperialism, in every revolution, hence, also in the democratic revolution, the anti-imperialist national liberation revolution and the socialist revolution, the leadership must belong to the proletariat. Although he talked about the role of the proletariat, in practice Mao Tse-tung underestimated its hegemony in the revolution and elevated the role of the peasantry. Mao Tsetung has said:
“….the resistance to Japanese occupiers now going on is essentially peasant resistance. Essentially, the politics of New Democracy means giving power to the peasants”. (Mao)
Mao Tse-tung expressed this petty-bourgeois theory in his general thesis that the “countryside must encircle the city”.
“… revolutionary villages”, he wrote, “can encircle the cities… rural work should play the primary role in the Chinese revolutionary movement and urban work a secondary role”. (Mao)
Mao expressed this idea also when he wrote about the role of the peasantry in the state. He has said that all other political parties and forces must submit to the peasantry and its views.
“… millions of peasants will rise like a mighty storm, a force so swift and violent that no power, however great, will be able to hold it back…,” he writes. “They will put to the test every revolutionary party and group, every revolutionary, so that they either accept their views or reject them”.. (Mao)
According to Mao, it turns out that the peasantry and not the working class should play the hegemonic role in the revolution.
Mao Tse-tung also preached the thesis on the hegemonic role of the peasantry in the revolution as the road of the world revolution. Herein lies the source of the anti-Marxist concept that considers the so-called third world, which in Chinese political literature is also called “the countryside of the world”, as the “main motive force for the transformation of present-day society”. According to the Chinese views, the proletariat is a second-rate social force, which cannot play that role which Marx and Lenin envisaged in the struggle against capitalism and the triumph of the revolution, in alliance with all the forces oppressed by capital.
The Chinese revolution has been dominated by the petty-and middle bourgeoisie. This broad stratum of the petty-bourgeoisie has influenced the whole development of China.
Mao Tse-tung did not base himself on the Marxist-Leninist theory which teaches us that the peasantry, the petty-bourgeoisie in general, is vacillating. Of course, the poor and middle peasantry play an important role in the revolution and must become the close ally of the proletariat. But the peasant class, the petty-bourgeoisie, cannot lead the proletariat in the revolution. To think and preach the opposite means to be against Marxism-Leninism. Herein lies one of the main sources of the anti-Marxist views of Mao Tse-tung, which have had a negative influence on the whole Chinese revolution. The Communist Party of China has not been clear in theory about the basic revolutionary guiding principle of the hegemonic role of the proletariat in the revolution, and consequently it did not apply it in practice properly and consistently. Experience shows that the peasantry can play its revolutionary role only if it acts in alliance with the proletariat and under its leadership. This was proved in our country during the National Liberation War.
The Albanian peasantry was the main force of our revolution, however it was the working class, despite its very small numbers, which led the peasantry, because the Marxist-Leninist ideology, the ideology of the proletariat, embodied in the Communist Party, today the Party of Labour, the vanguard of the working class, was the leadership of the revolution. That is why we triumphed not only in the National Liberation War, but also in the construction of socialism.
Despite the innumerable difficulties we encountered on our road we scored success one after another. We achieved these successes, in the first place, because the Party thoroughly mastered the essence of the theory of Marx and Lenin, understood what the revolution was, who was making it and who had to lead it, understood that at the head of the working. class, in alliance with the peasantry, there had to be a party of the Leninist type. The communists understood that this party must not be communist only in name but had to be a party which would apply the Marxist-Leninist theory of the revolution and party building in the concrete conditions of our country, which would begin the work for the creation of the new socialist society, following the example of the construction of socialism in the Soviet Union of the time of Lenin and Stalin. This stand gave our Party the victory, gave the country the great political, economic and military strength it has today. Had we acted differently, had we not consistently applied these principles of our great theory, socialism could not have been built in a small country surrounded by enemies, as ours is. Even if we had succeeded in taking power for a moment, the bourgeoisie would have seized it back again, as happened in Greece, where before the struggle had been won, the Greek Communist Party surrendered its weapons to the local reactionary bourgeoisie and British imperialism.
Therefore, the question of hegemony in the revolution is a very important matter of principle because the course and development of the revolution depend on who is leading it.
“Renunciation of the idea of the hegemony,” stressed Lenin, “is the most vulgar form of reformism”.
The negation by “Mao Tse-tung thought” of the leading role of the proletariat was precisely one of the causes that the Chinese revolution remained a bourgeois-democratic revolution and did not develop into a socialist revolution. In his. article “New Democracy”, Mao Tse-tung preached that after the triumph of the revolution in China a regime would be established which would be based on the alliance of the “democratic classes”, in which, besides the peasantry and the. proletariat, he also included the urban petty-bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie.
“Just as everyone should share what food there is,” he writes, “so there should be no monopoly of power by a single party, group or class.” (Mao)
This idea has also been reflected in the national flag of the People’s Republic of China, with four stars which represent four classes: the working class, the peasantry, the urban petty-bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie.
The revolution in China, which brought about the liberation of the country, the creation of the. independent Chinese state, was a great victory for the Chinese people, and for the world anti-imperialist and democratic forces. After the liberation, many positive changes were made in China: the domination by foreign imperialism and big landowners was liquidated, poverty and unemployment were combated, a series of socio-economic reforms in favour of the working masses were carried out, the educational and cultural backwardness was fought against, a series of measures were taken for the reconstruction of the country ravaged by the war, and some transformations of a socialist character were made. In China, where people died by millions in the past, starvation no longer existed, etc. These are undeniable facts, and are important victories for the Chinese people.
From the adoption of these measures and the fact that the Communist Party came to power, it appeared as if China was going to socialism. But things did not turn out that way. Having “Mao Tse-tung thought” as the basis of its activity, the Communist Party of China, which after the triumph of the bourgeois-democratic revolution ought to have proceeded cautiously without being leftist and without skipping the stages, proved to be “democratic”, liberal, opportunist, and did not lead the country consistently on the correct road to socialism.
The non-Marxist, eclectic, bourgeois political and ideological views of Mao Tse-tung gave liberated China an unstable superstructure, a chaotic, organization of the state and the economy which never achieved stability. China was in continuous disorder, even anarchic disorder, which was encouraged by Mao Tse-tung himself with the slogan “things must first be stirred up in order to clarify them.” In the new Chinese state Chou En-lai played a special role. He was an able economist and organizer, but was never a Marxist-Leninist politician. As the typical pragmatist, he knew how to implement his non-Marxist views and adapt them perfectly to each group that took power in China. He was a poussah, tiao always managed to stay on his feet, although he always rocked from the centre to the right, but but never to the left. Chou En-lai was a pastmaster of unprincipled compromises. He las supported and condemned Chiang Kai-shek, Kao Gang, Liti Shao-chilh, Teng Hsiao-ping, Mao Tsetung, Lin Piao, “The Four”, but he has never supported Lenin and Stalin, Marxism-Leninism. After liberation, as a result of the views and stands of Mao Tse-tung, Chou En-lai and others, many waverings in all directions were observed in the political line if the Party. The tendency advocated by “Mao Tse-tung thought” that the bourgeois-democratic stage of the revolution had to continue for a long time, was kept alive in China. Mao Tse-tung insisted that in this stage the premises for socialism would be created parallel with the development of capitalism, to which he priority. Also linked with this, is his thesis on the coexistence of socialism with the bourgeoisie for a very long time, presenting this as something beneficial both to socialism and to the bourgeoisie. Replying to those who opposed such a policy and who brought up the experience of the October Socialist Revolution as an argument, Mao Tse-tung says:
“The bourgeoisie in Russia was a counterrevolutionary class, it rejected state capitalism at that time, organized slow-downs and sabotage and even resorted to the gun. The Russian Proletariat had no choice but to finish it off. This infuriated the bourgeoisie in other countries, and they became abusive. Here in China we have been relatively moderate with our national bourgeoisie who feel a little more comfortable and believe they can also find some advantage.” (Mao)
According to Mao Tse-tung such a policy has allegedly improved China’s reputation in the eyes of the international bourgeoisie, but in reality it has done great harm to socialism in China.
Mao Tse-tung has presented his opportunist stand towards the bourgeoisie as a creative implementation of the teachings of Lenin on the New Economic Policy (NEP). But there is a radical difference between the teachings of Lenin and the concept of Mao Tse-tung on allowing unrestricted capitalist production and maintaining bourgeois relations in socialism. Lenin admits that the NEP was a step back which allowed the development of elements of capitalism for a certain time, but he stressed:
“… there is nothing dangerous to the Proletarian state in this so long as the proletariat keeps political power firmly in its hands, so long as it keeps transport and big industry firmly in its hands”. (Lenin)
In fact, neither in 1949 nor in 1956, when Mao Tse-tung advocated these things, did the proletariat in China, have political power or big industry in its own hands.
Moreover, Lenin considered the NEP as a temporary measure which was imposed by the concrete conditions of Russia of that time, devastated by the long civil war, and not as a universal law of of socialist construction. And the fact is that one year after the proclamation of the NEP Lenin stressed that the retreat was over, and launched the slogan to prepare for the offensive against private capital in the economy. Whereas in China, the period of the preservation of capitalist production was envisaged to last almost eternally. According to Mao Tse-tung’s view, the order established after liberation in China had to be a bourgeois-democratic order, while the Communist Party of China had to appear to be in power. Such is “Mao Tse-tung thought”.
The transition from the bourgeois-democratic revolution to the socialist revolution can be realized only when the proletariat resolutely removes the bourgeoisie from power and expropriates it.
As long as the working class in China shared power with the bourgeoisie, as long as the bourgeoisie preserved its privileges, the state power that was established in China, could not be the state power of the proletariat, and consequently, the Chinese revolution could not grow into a socialist revolution.
The Communist Party of China has maintained a benevolent opportunist stand towards the exploiting classes, and Mao Tse-tung has openly advocated the peaceful integration of capitalist elements into socialism. Mao Tse-tung said:
“Actually all ultra-reactionaries of the world are ultra-reactionaries, and they will remain such tomorrow and the day after tomorrow, they will not remain such unto death, and in the end they change… Essentially, ultra-reactionaries are die-hards but not stable… It may happen that ultra-reactionaries may change for the better… they come to see their mistakes and change for the better. In short, ultra-reactionaries do change”. (Mao)
In his desire to provide a theoretical basis for this opportunist concept, and playing on the “transformation of the opposites”, Mao Tse-tung said that through discussion, criticism and transformation, antagonistic contradictions are transformed into non-antagonistic contradictions, the exploiting classes and the bourgeois intelligentsia can turn into their opposite, that is, become revolutionaries.
“However, given the conditions of our country,” Mao Tsetung wrote in 1956, “most of the counterrevolutionaries will eventually change to a greater or lesser extent. Thanks to the correct policy we have adopted towards counterrevolutionaries, many have been transformed into persons no longer opposed to the revolution, and a few have even done some good to it.”
Proceeding from such anti-Marxist concepts, according to which with the lapse of time the class enemies will be corrected, he advocated class conciliation with them and allowed them to continue to enrich themselves, to exploit, to speak, and to act freely against the revolution. To justify this capitulationist stand towards the class enemy, Mao Tse-tung wrote:
“We have a lot to do now. It is impossible to keep on hitting out at them day in day out for the next fifty years. There are people who refuse to correct their mistakes, they can take them into their coffins when they go to see the King of Hell”. (Mao)
Acting in practice according to these views of conciliation with the enemies, the state administration in China was left in the hands of the old officials. Chiang Kai-shek’s generals even became ministers. Indeed, even Pu Yi, the emperor of Manchu-kuo, the puppet emperor of the Japanese occupiers, was protected very carefully and turned into a museum piece so that delegations could go to meet and talk with him and see how such people were re-educated in “sociaist” China. Besides other things, the aim of the publicity given to this former puppet emperor was to dispel even the fears of kings, chieftains, and puppets of reaction in other countries, so that they would think that Mao’s “socialism” is fine and have no reason to fear it.
Stands which do not smack of class struggle have been adopted in China also towards those feudal lords and capitalists, who have committed innumerable crimes against the Chinese people. Elevating such stands to theory and openly taking counterrevolutionaries under his protection, Mao Tse-tung stated:
“… we should kill none and arrest very few… They are not to be arrested by the public security bureaus, prosecuted by the procuratorial organs or tried by the law courts. Well over ninety out of every hundred of these counterrevolutionaries should be dealt with in this way.” (Mao)
Reasoning as a sophist, Mao Tse-tung says that the execution of counterrevolutionaries does no good, that such an action allegedly hinders production, the scientific level of the country, and will give us a bad name in the world, etc., that if one counterrevolutionary is liquidated,
“we would have to compare his case with that of a second, of a third, and so on, and then many heads would begin to roll… once a head is chopped off it can’t be restored, nor can it grow again as chives do, after being cut.” (Mao)
As a result of these anti-Marxist. concepts about contradictions, about classes, and their role in revolution that “Mao Tse-tung thought” advocates, China never proceeded on the correct road of socialist construction. It is not just the economic, political, ideological and social remnants of the past that have survived and continue to exist in Chinese society, but the exploiting classes continue to exist there as classes, and still remain in power. Not only does the bourgeoisie still exist, but it also continues to gain income from the property it has had.
Capitalist rent has not been abolished by law in China, because the Chinese leadership has adhered to the strategy of the bourgeois-democratic revolution formulated in 1935 by Mao Tse-tung, who said at that time:
“The labour laws of the people’s republic… will not prevent the national bourgeoisie from making profits … ” (Mao)
In conformity with the Policy of the “equal right to land,” the kulak stratum, in the forms which have existed in China, has retained great advantages and profits. Mao Tse-tung himself gave orders that the kulaks must not be touched, because this might anger the national bourgeoisie with which the Communist Party of China had formed a common united front, politically, economically and organizationally.
All these things show that ,”Mao Tse-tung thought” did not and could not guide China on the genuine road to socialism. Indeed, as Chou En-lai declared in 1949, when secretly applying to the American government to help China, neither Mao Tsetung nor his chief supporters were for the socialist road.
“China,” wrote Chou En-lai, “is not yet a communist country, and if the policy of Mao Tse-tung is implemented properly, it will not become a communist country for a long time”. (Internationale Herald Tribune, August 14, 1978)
In a demagogic way, Mao Tse-tung and the Communist Party of China have subordinated all their declarations about the construction of the socialist and communist society to their pragmatic policy. Thus, in the years of the so-called great leap forward, with the aim of throwing dust in the eyes of the masses, who, emerging from the revolution, aspired to socialism, they declared that within 2-3 five-year periods, they would pass directly over to communism. Later, however, in order to cover up their failures, they began to theorize that the construction and triumph of socialism would require ten thousand years.
True, the Communist Party of China called itself communist, but it developed in another direction, on a chaotic liberal course, an opportunist course and could not be a force capable of leading the country towards socialism. The road it followed, and which was concretized even more clearly after Mao’s death, was not the road of socialism, but the road of building a great bourgeois, social-imperialist state.
As an anti-Marxist doctrine, “Mao Tse-tung thought” has substituted great state chauvinism for proletarian internationalism. From the very first steps of its activity, the Communist Party of China displayed open nationalist and chauvinist tendencies, which, as the facts show, could not be eradicated during the succeeding periods, either. Li Ta-chao, one of the founders of the Communist Party of China, said,
“the Europeans think that the world belongs exclusively to the whites and that they are the su perior class, while the coloured peoples are in ferior. The Chinese people,” Li Ta-chao continues, “must be ready to wage a class struggle against the other races of the world, in which they will once again display their special national qualities.”
The Communist Party of China was imbued with such views right from the beginning.
Such racist and nationalist views could not have been eliminated completely from the mentality of Mao Tse-tung, let alone that of Liu and Teng. In the report which he delivered to the Central Committee of the Party in 1938, Mao Tse-tung said,
“Contemporary China has grown out of the development of the China of the past . ..We should sum up our history from Confucius to Sun Yat-sen… and take over this valuable legacy. This is important for guiding the great movement of today”. (Mao)
Of course, every Marxist-Leninist party says that it must base itself on the legacy of its own people from the past, but it also bears in mind that it must base itself not on everything inherited but only on what is progressive. Communists reject the reactionary legacy in the field of ideas, as well as in any other field. The Chinese have been very conservative, even xenophobic, in regard to their old forms, content, and ideas. They preserved the old as a treasure of great value. From the talks we held with them, it turns out that the Chinese placed little value on all the revolutionary experience of the world. To them only their own policy, their struggle against Chiang Kai-shek, their long march, the theory of Mao Tse-tung, were of value. As for the progressive values of other peoples, the Chinese considered them of little or no worth, indeed they did not take the trouble to study them. Mao Tse-tung proclaimed,
“the Chinese should cast aside the formulas created by foreigners.”
But precisely which of these formulas, he does not define. He has condemned
“all the clichés and dogmas borrowed from other countries.”
Here the question arises: is the theory of scientific socialism, which was not worked out by the Chinese, also included in these “dogma” sand “clichés” alien to China?
The leadership of the Communist Party of China considered Marxism-Leninism the monopoly of the Soviet Union, towards which Mao Tse-tung and company nurtured chauvinist views, great-state views, and had, you might say, a sort of bourgeois jealousy. They did not consider the Soviet Union of the time of Lenin and Stalin the great fatherland of the world proletariat, on which proletarians of all the world had to rely in order to carry out the revolution, and which they had to defend with all their strength against the furious onslaught of the bourgeoisie and imperialism. Decades ago, Mao Tse-tung and Chou En-lai, the two chief leaders of the Communist Party of China, spoke and acted in opposition to the Soviet Union which was led by Stalin. They even spoke against Stalin himself. Mao Tse-tung accused Stalin of subjectivism, saying,
“he failed to see the connection between the struggle of opposites and the unity of opposites,” (Mao)
that he allegedly made
“a number of mistakes in connection with China. The ‘Left adventurism’ pursued by Wang Ming in the latter part of the Second Revolutionary Civil War period and his Right opportunism in the early days of the War of Resistance Against Japan can both be traced to Stalin,”
that Stalin’s actions towards Yugoslavia and Tito were wrong, etc.
Although for the sake of appearances Mao Tse-tung would now and then speak in defence of Stalin, saying that he was only 30 percent bad, in fact he mentioned only Stalin’s mistakes. Mao’s statement at the Moscow Meeting of the communist and workers’ parties in 1957, when he said,
“in Stalin’s presence I felt like the pupil before his teacher, whereas now that we meet Khrushchev, we are like comrades, we are at ease,”
is not fortuitous. With this he publicly hailed and approved Khrushchev’s slanders against Stalin and defended the Khrushchevite line.
Just as the other revisionists, Mao Tse-tung used the criticisms against Stalin in order to justify his deviation from the Marxist-Leninist principles which Stalin consistently defended and further enriched. With their attack against Stalin, the Chinese revisionists intended to disparage his work and authority, to raise Mao Tse-tung’s authority to the rank of a world leader, a classic of Marxism-Leninism, who allegedly has a ways pursued a correct and infallible line! These criticisms also expressed their accumulated discontent against Stalin over the censure and criticisms he and the Comintern made of the leadership of the Communist Party of China and Mao Tse-tung over their failure to implement the principles of Marxism-Leninism consistently on the leading role of the proletariat in the revolution, proletarian internationalism, the strategy and tactics of the revolutionary struggle, etc. Mao Tse-tung expressed this discontent openly saying,
“Stalin suspected that ours was a victory of the Tito type, and in 1949 and 1950 his pressure on us was very strong indeed.” (Mao)
Likewise, during his talks with us here in Tirana, Chou En-lai said,
“Stalin suspected us of being pro-American or that we might go the Yugoslav way.”
Time has proved that Stalin was completely right. His forebodings about the Chinese revolution and the ideas guiding it turned out to be accurate. The contradictions between the Communist Party of China, led by Mao Tse-tung, and the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, led by Stalin, as well as those between the Communist Party of China and the Comintern, were contradictions over principles, over fundamental questions of revolutionary Marxist-Leninist strategy and tactics. For instance, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China ignored the thesis of the Comintern on the correct and consistent development of the revolution in China, its orientation about joint action of the working class in the city and the liberation army, the theses of the Comintern on the character and stages of the Chinese revolution, etc. Mao Tse-tung and the other leaders of the Communist Party of China have always spoken disparagingly of the delegates from the Comintern to China, calling them “stupid,” “ignorant” people, who “did not know the Chinese reality,” etc. Regarding each country as “an objective reality in itself,” “closed to others,” Mao Tse-tung considered the assistance of the delegates from the Comintern unnecessary, and simply impossible. In his speech to the Enlarged Working Conference of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China in January 1962, Mao Tse-tung said:
“China, as an objective world, was known by the Chinese and not by the comrades from the Comintern who were engaged with the question of China. These comrades from the Comintern knew little or nothing about Chinese society, the Chinese nation and the Chinese revolution. Thus why should these foreign comrades be referred to here?”
When speaking about their successes, Mao, Tse-tung leaves the Comintern out. Whereas for the defeats and deviations of the Communist Party of China, for the failure to understand and draw correct deductions from the situations which developed in China, he casts the blame on the Comintern and its representatives in China. He and other Chinese leaders accuse the Comintern of having allegedly impeded and complicated things for them in the waging of a consistent struggle for the seizure of power and the construction of socialism in China. But the facts of the past and especially the present Chinese reality confirm that the Comintern’s decisions and directives about China were correct in general, and that the Communist Party of China did not act on the basis and in the spirit of the principles of Marxism-Leninism.
The consequences of the narrow nationalism and big state chauvinism which characterize “Mao Tse-tung thought”, that have been and are at the basis of the activity of the Communist Party of China, are also reflected in the stands towards, and activity of that party in, the international communist movement.
This is apparent concretely in the stand of the Communist Party of China towards the new Marxist-Leninist parties which were created after the Khrushchevites’ betrayal. From the very start the Chinese leadership had not the least confidence in them. This view was expressed openly by Keng Piao, the person in the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, who makes the decisions on relations with the international communist movement. He has said,
“China does not approve the creation of Marxist-Leninist parties and does not want the representatives of these parties to come to China. Their coming is a nuisance to us but,” he stressed, “we can do nothing about them, for we cannot send them away. We accept them just as we accept the representatives of bourgeois parties”. (From Keng Piao’s conversation with comrades from our Party in Peking, April 16, 1973)
Such a policy, which had nothing in common with proletarian internationalism, was followed at the time Mao Tse-tung was alive, when he was fully capable of thinking and directing, hence it had his full approval. When, contrary to the desires of the Chinese leaders, these new Marxist-Leninist parties began to grow strong, then they pursued another tactic, the recognition of all new parties and every group without exception and without any distinction, provided only that they called themselves “Marxist parties”, “revolutionary parties”, “red guards”, etc. The Party of Labour of Albaniaia has criticized this stand and tactic of the Communist Party of China. The other genuine Marxist-Leninist parties have done the same thing. Nevertheless, the revisionist Chinese leadership has continued on the same course. Later, in conformity with their pragmatic policy towards the newly formed parties and groups, the Chinese leaders adopted differentiated attitudes. They called the genuine Marxist-Leninist parties their enemies, whereas groups and parties which opposed these parties, came to be very dear to them. At present, the Chinese revisionists not only maintain ties with these anti-Marxist parties and groups, which laud “Mao Tse-tung thought” to the skies, but also invite their representatives one by one to Peking, where they work on them, give them financial assistance and political and ideological instructions and brief them on how to act against the Party of Labour of Albania and the genuine Marxist-Leninist parties. They require them to propagate “Mao Tse-tung thought”, the theory of “three worlds” and, in general, the foreign policy of China, to create the cult of Hua Kuo-feng and Teng Hsiao ping and condemn “The Four”. To the Chinese revisionists, that party which meets these demands is “Marxist-Leninist”, while those parties which oppose them are declared anti-Marxist, adventurist, etc.
All this shows that in their relations with the Marxist-Leninist parties, the Chinese revisionist leaders have not implemented the Leninist principles and norms which regulate relations between genuine communist parties. Like the Khrushchevite revisionists, proceeding from the anti-Marxist concept of the “mother party”, they have resorted to dictate, pressure and interference in the internal affairs of the other parties, and have never accepted comradely advice and suggestions from sister parties. They have opposed the multilateral meetings of Marxist-Leninist parties, meetings to discuss the great problems of the preparation and triumph of the revolution, the fight against modern revisionism for the defence of Marxism-Leninism, to exchange experience and co-ordinate actions, etc. The reason for such a stand, among other things, is that they have been afraid to confront the genuine Marxist-Leninists in multilateral meetings, because their anti-Marxist and revisionist theories in the service of world capital and of the strategy intended to transform China into a superpower, would be exposed and unmasked.
Another indication of the anti-Marxist essence of “Mao Tse-tung thought” is the relations the Communist Party of China has maintained and continues to maintain with many heterogenous fascist, revisionist and other parties and groups. Now it is striving to prepare the ground to infiltrate or build relations also with the old revisionist parties of various countries, as for example those of Italy, France, Spain and the other countries of Europe, Latin America, etc. The Chinese revisionists are attaching ever greater importance to these relations because, ideologically, they are all in line with the Communist Party of China, regardless of the differences they have in tactics, which depend on the nature, strength and power of capitalism in each country. The ties of the Communist Party of China with these traditionally revisionist parties will gradually be expanded, their actions will be concerted while it will continue to use the small groups, which call themselves “Marxist-Leninist” and follow the Chinese line, to fight and disrupt the existing genuine Marxist-Leninist parties, which remain unwavering in their stand, as well as the other parties which are being born or will be born. With these actions the Chinese revisionists are openly assisting capitalism, the social-democratic and revisionist parties, sabotaging the outbreak and triumph of the revolution and, especially, the preparation of the subjective factor, the strengthening of the genuine Marxist-Leninist parties which will. lead this revolution.The Communist Party of China applied this same tactic in its relations with the so-called League of Communists of Yugoslavia, which has worked with all its might to split the international communist movement and has fought socialism and Marxism-Leninism relentlessly. The present Chinese leaders want to march together with the Yugoslav revisionists and co-ordinate their actions with them in the struggle against Marxism-Leninism and all the Marxist-Leninist parties, against the revolution, socialism and communism. Mao Tse-tung and the Communist Party of China have maintained a pragmatic stand towards Yugoslav revisionism and have made a great evolution in their views about Tito and Titoism. At first, Mao Tse-tung said that Tito was not wrong, but it was Stalin who had been wrong about Tito. Then the same Mao Tse-tung ranks Tito with Hitler and Chiang Kai-shek and says that
“such people… as Tito, Hitler, Chiang Kaishek and the Czar cannot be corrected, they should be killed”.
However, he changed his stand again and expressed his great desire to meet Tito. Tito himself declared recently:
“I was invited to China when Mao Tsetung was alive. During the visit of the Chairman of the Federal Executive Veche, Djemal Myedich, to China, at that time, Mao Tsetung expressed to him his desire that I should visit China. Chairman Hua Kuofeng also told me that, five years ago, Mao Tsetung said that he should have invited me for a visit, stressing that in 1948, too, Yugoslavia was in the right, a thing which he (Mao Tsetung) had declared even then, to a narrow circle. But, taking into consideration the relations between China and the Soviet Union at that time, this was not said publicly”. (From Tito’s speech at the meeting of activists of the SR of Slovenia, September 8, 1978).
The revisionist leadership of China is loyally carrying out this “will” of Mao Tse-tung. Hua Kuo-feng seized the opportunity of Tito’s visit to China, and especially of his own visit to Yugoslavia, to eulogize Tito, to present him as a “distinguished Marxist-Leninist”, a “great leader” not. only of Yugoslavia but also of the international communist movement.
In this way the Chinese leadership also openly endorsed all the attacks of the Titoites on Stalin and the Bolshevik Party, on the Party of Labour of Albania, the international communist movement and Marxism-Leninism. The close political and ideological relations of’ the Chinese revisionists with the Titoites, “Eurocommunists”, like Carrillo and company, the backing they give the anti-Marxist, Trotskyite, anarchist and social-democratic parties and groups, show that the Chinese leaders, inspired and guided by “Mao Tse-tung thought”, are setting up a common ideological front with the renegades from Marxism-Leninism, against the revolution, against the interests of the peoples’ liberation-struggle. That is why all the enemies of communism are rejoicing over the Chinese “theories”, because they see that “Mao Tse-tung thought”, the Chinese policy, are directed against the revolution and socialism.
These questions which we have analysed do not cover all the anti-Marxist and anti-Leninist content of “Mao Tse-tung thought”. However, they are sufficient to permit the conclusion that Mao Tse-tung was not a Marxist-Leninist, but a progressive revolutionary democrat, who remained for a long time at the head of the Chinese Communist Party and played an important role in the triumph of the Chinese democratic anti-imperialist revolution. Within China, in the ranks of the party, among the people and outside China, he -built up his reputation as a great Marxist-Leninist .-and he himself posed as a communist, as a Marxist-Leninist dialectician. But this was not so. He was an eclectic who combined some elements of Marxist dialectics with idealism, with bourgeois and revisionist philosophy, indeed, even ,with ancient Chinese philosophy. Therefore, the views of Mao Tse-tung must be studies not only in the arranged phrases of some of his published works, but in their entirety, in their practical application, while also considering the practical consequences they have brought about.
In appraising “Mao Tse-tung thought” it is also important to bear in mind the concrete historical conditions under which it was formed. Mao Tse-tung’s ideas were developed at the time of the decay of capitalism, that is, at the time when proletarian revolutions are on the agenda and when the example of the great October Socialist Revolution, the great teachings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin have become an unerring guide for the proletariat and the revolutionary peoples of the world. The theory of Mao Tse-tung, “Mao Tse-tung thought”, which was born in these new conditions, had to try to deck itself out, as it did, in the garb of the most revolutionary and scientific theory of the time, Marxism-Leninism, but in essence it remained a “theory” opposed to the cause of the proletarian revolution and which comes to the rescue of imperialism in crisis and decay. Therefore, we say that Mao Tse-tung and “Mao Tse-tung thought” are anti-Marxist.
When one talks of “Mao Tse-tung thought” it is difficult to discern a single clear line in it, since, as we said at the beginning, it is an amalgam of ideologies, from anarchism, Trotskyism, modern revisionism à la Tito, à la Krushchev, à la “Eurocommunist”, and down to the use of some Marxist phrases. In all this amalgam the old ideas of Confucius, Menclus, and the other Chinese philosophers, who have directly influenced the formation of the ideas of Mao Tse-tung, his cultural and theoretical development, also occupy an honoured place. Even those aspects of Mao Tse-tung’s views which come out in the form of a distorted Marxism-Leninism bear the seal and features of a certain “Asiocommunism” with heavy doses of nationalism, xenophobia and even Buddhist religion, and were bound to come into open opposition with Marxism-Leninism eventually.
The revisionist group of Hua Kuo-feng and Teng Hsiao-ping, which is ruling in China today, has “Mao Tse-tung thought” as the theoretical basis and ideological platform for its reactionary policy and activity. In order to strengthen its shaky positions, the group around Hua Kuo-feng and Yeh Chien-yi, which came to power, unfurled the banner of Mao Tse-tung. Under this banner it condemned the Tien An Men demonstration and liquidated Teng Hsiao-ping, to whom they attached the label of the revisionist, which he deserved. Under this banner this group seized power in a putsch and smashed “The Four”. However, the chaos which has always characterized China, continued at an even greater intensity.
This troubled situation brought Teng Hsiao-ping to the fore and imposed his return to power, and he set out again on his course of right extremism with fascist methods. Teng’s objective was to strengthen the positions of his own group, to follow his undisguised course of alliance with American imperialism and the reactionary world bourgeoisie. Teng Hsiao-ping brought out the program of the “four modernizations” put an end to the Cultural Revolution, liquidated all that mass of cadres promoted to the organs of state power, the party and the army by this revolution, and replaced them with the men of the blackest reaction, who have been exposed and condemned in the past.
Now we are witnessing a period which is characterized by the big character posters against Mao Tse-tung with which Teng Hsiao-ping’s followers are decorating the walls of Peking. It is the period of “revenge” which has two aims: first, to liquidate the “prestige” of Mao and eliminate the obstacle of Hua Kuo-feng and, second, to make Teng Hsiao-ping an all-powerful fascist dictator and to rehabilitate Liu Shao-chi. Against this background of reactionary manoeuvres there are those in China, as well as abroad, who draw a comparison betwen Teng Hsiao-ping’s struggle against Mao, who was never a Marxist-Leninist, and the crime of Khrushchev, who threw mud at Stalin, who was and remains a great Marxist-Leninist. No one, however little the brain in his head, can accept such an analogy. The most correct comparison possible is that, just as Brezhnev and the revisionist group around him toppled Khrushchev, now, the Chinese Brezhnev, Teng Hsiao-ping, is toppling the Chinese Khrushchev, Mao Tse-tung, from his pedestal.
This whole business is a revisionist game, a struggle for personal power. It has always been so in China. There is nothing Marxist about it. Only the Chinese working class and a true Marxist-Leninist party purged of “Mao Tse-tung though”, “Teng Hsiao-ping thought”, and all other such anti-Marxist, revisionist, bourgeois thoughts, will correct this situation. It is the ideas of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin which can rescue China from this situation through a genuine proletarian revolution. But we are confident that one day Marxism-Leninism and the proletarian revolution in China will triumph and the enemies of the Chinese proletariat and people will be defeated. Of course, such a thing will not be attained without a fight and bloodshed, because it will take many efforts to form the Marxist-Leninist revolutionary party in China, the leader indispensable to victory over the traitors and the triumph of socialism.
We are convinced that the fraternal Chinese people, the genuine Chinese revolutionaries will free themselves from illusions and myths. They will come to understand politically and ideologically that in the leadership of the Communist Party of China there are no Marxist-Leninist revolutionaries, but men of the bourgeoisie, of capitalism, who are pursuing a course which has no for the masses and the revolutionaries to understand this, it is necessary that they realize that not Marxism-Leninism, “Mao Tse-tung thought” is not a Marxist-Leninist and that Mao Tse-tung was not a Marxist-Leninist. The criticism we Marxist-Leninist make of “Mao Tse-tung” has nothing in common with the Tse-tung attacks which are aimed at Mao Tse-tung by the Teng Hsiao-ping in the struggle it is waging for power. By speaking out openly and frankly about these questions, we Albanian communists are fulfilling our duty in defence of Marxism-Leninism, and at the same time, as internationalists, also helping the Chinese people and revolutionaries to find the correct path in these difficult situations they are going through.
Differences Between Maoism & Marxism-Leninism
Cultural Revolution: Mao proclaimed that capitalist ideology, liberalism, and other bourgeois cultures are not fully removed from society through socialist revolution and that class struggle against these detrimental features of capitalism are continued in one form or another throughout the socialist stage of development. Maoism states the method for dealing with bourgeois culture is through “cultural revolution,” in which, according to their theory, the masses are mobilized to spread communist ideology in order to reduce capitalistic or feudalistic culture.
However, the cultural revolution turned out to be an ultra-left disaster for Mao. Beginning in 1966, it was more of a tribute to the cult of Mao than to spreading communism. All of Mao’s words and teachings were expected to be understood and followed without question, and as a result production and economic activity declined, workers too busy engaging in appraisal of Mao Tse-Tung thought. Because class consciousness was not reached, the masses, many of whom were mere youth, frequently became excessively violent, opportunistic, and acted more in favor of adventurism than communism. Mao essentially let Party control loose itself to the hands of the cultural revolution, and even began to remove Party officials in opposition to the revolution such as Liu Shaoqi, who was originally to be named as Mao’s successor.
The cultural revolution underwent three primary stages. The first stage was the “anti-intelligence” stage in which the youth spread to combat the intelligentsia. In order to remove what was inherently perceived as “bourgeois education,” lessons in school were stopped to large extents and the focus of all daily activity shifted to the cultural revolution and praising Mao’s brilliance.
It was then in the second phase of the cultural revolution in which Mao claimed that the bourgeoisie was within the Party itself and that the Party’s administration must be overthrown. As a result, terror and violence broke out on large scales, without any control from the Party because quite simply, the Party was liquidated. Mao also failed to realize that he himself let the bourgeoisie exist within the Party, choosing to allow revisionists and “capitalist roaders” such Xiaoping to remain in power, and to allow the bourgeoisie to control communes as managers, allowing the bourgeoisie to receive 25% of profits from workers. Four out of seventeen members of the Politburo, including Mao, survived the cultural revolution. These members were seen as enemies of the people for their opposition.
Next, in the third stage of the cultural revolution Mao finally realized the nature of the beast. He began to divide the masses into smaller groups and send them to the countrysides, shifting the power into the peasantry. This then allowed for the peasantry to become a more dominant force in numerous aspects of China’s infrastructure, including agriculture and science, and the peasantry even began to control the labor of the youth groups that had once been active in the cultural revolution. Mao also is noted for utilizing the military in 1967 to further gain control of the situation, as he often did when feeling threatened. Even with the obvious failures of the cultural revolution, Mao still stubbornly promoted it and it was not until 1976, Mao’s death, when the cultural revolution truly ended. Mao claimed to officially have ended the cultural revolution in 1969 but in reality it was extended much longer.
Then after Mao’s death, the Gang of Four were perceived as counter-revolutionaries and were removed from power and jailed by Guofeng and Xiaoping, who were ironically enough spared and chosen as successors by Mao himself. Market capitalism then began to restore itself in China, and whatever socialistic bases Mao had developed began to crumble. We see therefore that the cultural revolution was never an instrument of achieving socialism, or the dictatorship of the proletariat. The cultural revolution exposed the revisionism of Mao; at no point where the teachings of Marx or Lenin followed or spread during the cultural revolution. It remained not a revolution, but a ten-year-long student riot.
In Imperialism and Revolution by Enver Hoxha, Hoxha states that the very name of “cultural revolution” was inaccurate. “In our Party’s opinion, this name was not accurate, since, in fact, the movement that had burst out in China was a political, not a cultural movement. But the main thing was the fact that neither the party nor the proletariat were in the leadership of this ‘reat proletarian revolution’. This grave situation stemmed from Mao Tse-Tung’s old anti-Marxist concepts of underestimation of the leading role of the proletariat and overestimation of the youth in the revolution. Mao wrote: “What role did the Chinese young people begin to play since the ‘May 4th Movement’? In a way they began to play a vanguard role – a fact recognized by everybody in our country except the ultra-reactionaries. What is a vanguard role? It means taking the lead… Thus the working class was left on the sidelines, and there were many instances when it opposed the red guards and even fought them. Our comrades, who were in China at that time, have seen with their own eyes factory workers fighting the youth. The party was disintegrated. It was liquidated, and the communists and the proletariat were totally disregarded. This was a very grave situation.”
Of course in reference to Hoxha, Maoists like to whine that Hoxha himself supported the cultural revolution and saw Mao as a great Marxist-Leninist. In those regards Hoxha clearly responds: “Our Party defended the fraternal Chinese people, the cause of the revolution and socialism in China, and not the factional strife of anti-Marxist groups, which were clashing and fighting with one another, even with guns, in order to seize power.
The course of events showed that the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution was neither a revolution, nor great, nor cultural, and in particular, not in the least proletarian. It was a palace Putsch on an all-China scale for the liquidation of a handful of reactionaries who had seized power.
Of course, this Cultural Revolution was a hoax. It liquidated both the Communist Party of China, and the mass organizations and plunged China into new chaos. This revolution was led by non-Marxist elements, who have been liquidated through a military putsch staged by other anti-Marxist and fascist elements.”
Hoxha then states: “In our press Mao Tsetung has been described as a great Marxist-Leninist, but we never used and never approved the definitions of the Chinese propaganda which described Mao as a classic of Marxism-Leninism, and “Mao Tsetung thought” as its third and higher stage. Our Party has considered the inflation of the cult of Mao Tsetung in China to be incompatible with Marxism-Leninism.”
When Hoxha himself carried out a cultural-revolution it occurred in a much different, and much more successful manner than the Chinese revolution as well. Finally, in regards to the notion of class struggle continuing to exist in socialism, it was never Mao who developed this idea, and Maoists continually like to give credit where it is wrongly due. It was not Mao, but Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin who formulated this idea.
New Democracy: Maoism states that socialism can only be built through collaboration of several classes and parties via new democracy; a new democratic regime with such wrongful misconceptions based on “coexistence” and non-Marxist teaching. New democracy undermines the vanguard Marxist-Leninist party, undermines the proletarian dictatorship, and allows the bourgeoisie to remain in power. Dictatorship of the proletariat let alone socialism can never exist without strong leadership from the vanguard party; such political pluralism of Maoism is therefore detrimental to socialism.
Alliance with the bourgeoisie is alliance with anti-Marxism, and this alliance does nothing to strengthen socialism. New Democracy and Maoism inevitably conclude that bourgeois ideology exists eternally and therefore should be given the possibility to “blossom like a hundred flowers.” And of course as it turns out, Mao’s attempts of new democracy never caused beautiful flowers to grow, but merely to “enable the bourgeois wasps to circulate freely and release their venom (Hoxha).” In fact, Mao’s allowance of bourgeois into the CCP was one of the reasons for the cultural revolution. Combining the cultural revolution and new democracy we see cycles in Maoism. First there is a period of “great harmony” then great disorder, then the cycle repeats, given the incorrect and revisionist nature of Maoism. Maoism’s theories of revolution (e.g. new democratic stages of development) therefore boil down to metaphysics rather than dialectical materialism of Marxism. Mao treats the revolutionary process as an endless process, and as a result it’s no wonder there are the occasional quasi-Trotskyist Maoists that are able to demonstrate just how perverse Maoism is capable of being. Maoism does not realize the necessity of the dictatorship of the proletariat. Instead Maoism attempts to form itself on the basis of petty-bourgeois ideology; “class collaboration” in what can only be described as a “hybrid state.”
Marxism-Leninism seeks a well disciplined and educated vanguard party to educate and lead the people, but attempting to give the petty-bourgeois this position is merely liberalism. Stalin noted that the Communist Party is the most advanced detachment of the proletariat, and so denying the Party their true influence results in failure.
Three Worlds Theory: According to Mao, the USA and the post-Stalin Soviet Union represented the first world, imperialist states. The second world represented other, lesser imperialist states in their spheres of influence and the third world represented all non-imperialist countries. The first and second world exploit the third world through imperialism. The entire conception of the Three Worlds Theory was merely justification for Mao’s attempt to gain control over the third world countries surrounding China. Some Maoist Third Worldists even extended this further and claim that there can be no proletariat in the “first world,” which merely leads to ultra-leftism and radically false perceptions of class struggle. The “Maoist Third-Worldist” perception of the Three Worlds says that the working class of the “first world” are “bought off” by the bourgeoisie and raised by imperialism, and thus according to Maoist Third-Worldists, socialist revolution can not occur in the first world or imperialist countries; there is no proletariat in the imperialist countries.
It is true that revolution in third world countries does in fact weaken imperialism, as actually noted by Stalin and Lenin, but the belief that only the third world countries are capable of revolution, that the proletariat is merely a second-rate force, and especially the belief that there is no “first world” proletarian force is absurd.
The Three Worlds Theory is merely a counter-revolutionary and chauvinist theory that divides class struggle and is anti-Marxist. Marx stated that the only true division of capitalist society is the exploiting and exploited; the Three Worlds Theory ignores the Marxist analysis of exploitation. The very claim that there are “three worlds” is inherently racist and based on metaphysics; capitalistic reactionary belief. Mao’s Three Worlds Theory is blind to class struggle because it judges countries and even people in relation to bourgeois political concepts and economic development.
“To divide the world in three means failure to recognize the characteristics of the epoch, to impede the advance of the proletariat and the peoples towards the revolution and national liberation, to impede their struggle against American imperialism, Soviet social-imperialism, capital and reaction in every country and in every corner of the world. The theory of ‘three worlds’ advocates social peace, class conciliation, and tries to create alliances between implacable enemies, between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, the oppressed and the oppressors, the peoples and imperialism. It is an attempt to prolong the life of the old world, the capitalist world, to keep it on its feet precisely by seeking to extinguish the class struggle. But the class struggle, the struggle of the proletariat and its allies to take power and the struggle of the bourgeoisie to maintain its power can never be extinguished. This is an irrefutable truth and no amount of empty theorizing about the “worlds”, whether the “first world”, the “non aligned world”, the third world, the nonaligned world, or the umpteenth world, can alter this fact. To accept such a division, means to renounce and abandon the theory of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin on classes and the class struggle” (Enver Hoxha, Imperialism and Revolution).
People’s War: Maoism states that in order to achieve a successful revolution, the vanguard must be aware of the needs of the masses, and their needs must be factored into how the revolution takes place. By meeting the needs of the people, the revolution therefore becomes a revolution by, and for the people. According to Mao, people’s war, often as guerrilla warfare, undergoes three stages. In the first stage, the revolutionary forces begin mobilizing in remote areas in order to establish its base. Once the movement is able to gain more momentum, it continues to establish other bases throughout the area, its influence is spread throughout the countryside, gaining support through reforms and revolutionary activity. The third stage is then to capture small cities, then larger cities, then finally take on the entire country and the bourgeoisie, all meanwhile backed by the masses.
Historically, and even in more modern situations, people’s war has relied extensively on the peasantry. The proletariat is the only force capable of fully leading the revolution; the peasantry is a valuable ally, but Hoxha criticized Mao’s conception of a peoples war for cementing power for the peasantry and not the proletariat. The Marxist-Leninist approach of revolution therefore is an uprising that occurs simultaneously with the cities and countryside. Hoxha furthermore stressed that the people themselves train in using weapons in order to defend the country, and therefore military ranks were abolished, arms were distributed, and so forth.
“In accord with the concrete conditions of a country and the situations in general, the armed uprising may be a sudden outburst or a more protracted revolutionary process, but not, an endless one without perspective, as advocated by Mao Tsetung’s ,”theory of protracted people’s war”. If you compare the teachings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin on the revolutionary armed insurrection with Mao’s theory on -people’s war-, the anti-Marxist, anti-Leninist, anti-scientific character of this theory becomes clearly apparent. The Marxist-Leninist teachings on the armed insurrection are based on the close combination of the struggle in the city with that in the countryside under the leadership of the working class and its revolutionary party. Being opposed to the leading role of the proletariat in the revolution, the Maoist theory considers the countryside as the only base of the armed insurrection and neglects the armed struggle of the working masses in the town. It preaches that the countryside must keep the city, which is considered as the stronghold of the counterrevolutionary bourgeoisie, besieged. This is an expression of distrust in the working class, the negation of its hegemonic role. While adhering unwaveringly to the teachings of Marxism-Leninism on the violent revolution as a universal law, the revolutionary party of the working class is resolutely opposed to adventurism and never plays with armed insurrection. In all conditions and circumstances, it carries out an unceasing revolutionary struggle and activity in various forms, in order to prepare itself and the masses for the decisive battles in the revolution, for the overthrow of the rule of the bourgeoisie with revolutionary violence. But only when the revolutionary situation has fully matured does it put armed insurrection directly on the order of the day and take all the political, ideological, organizational and military measures to carry it through to victory” (Enver Hoxha, Imperialism and Revolution).
Mass Line: The mass line makes analysis of what the people need, what is on their minds, and so forth, and then takes those needs and gives a Marxist approach in order to help the masses understand their class interests. The mass line theory is indeed Marxist, but the problem is that Maoists seem to attribute the theory in it’s entirety to Mao. All Marxists have supported the same ideas, and the very idea of going to the masses can be attributed as early on as Marx himself.
EXTRACTS FROM: Letter of the CC of the Party of Labor of Albania to the CC of the Communist Party of China (July 18, 1979)
TO THE CC OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY AND THE GOVERNMENT OF CHINA (July 29, 1978)
TO THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF CHINA,
TO THE STATE COUNCIL OF THE PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA
Aid to Albania from China
On July 7, 1978 the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People‘s Republic of China handed an official note to the Embassy of the People‘s Socialist Republic of Albania in Peking, whereby it announces the decision of the Chinese Government to stop its economic and military aid and its aid payments to Albania and bring back its economic and military experts working in Albania up till that date. With this perfidious and hostile act towards socialist Albania, you unscrupulously scrapped the agreements officially concluded between the two countries, brutally and arbitrarily violated elementary international rules and norms and extended ideological disagreements to state relations with Albania. Taking this hostile step against socialist Albania, you seek to hit at, and damage, the economy and defence capacity of our country, to sabotage the cause of the revolution and socialism in Albania. At the same time, you gravely undermine the fraternal friendship between the Albanian and Chinese peoples. Wishing ill to a socialist country, such as the People‘s Socialist Republic of Albania, you give satisfaction to the enemies of socialism and the revolution. The responsibility for this reactionary and anti-Albanian act, as well as its consequences, lies completely with the Chinese side.
The Central Committee of the Party of Labour of Albania and the Albanian Government denounce the brutal cessation of aid and loans to socialist Albania before all world public opinion as a reactionary act from great power positions, an act which is a repetition, in content and form, of the savage and chauvinistic methods of Tito, Khrushchev and Brezhnev which China, also, once condemned.
To any normal person it is unbelievable and preposterous that Albania, a small country, which is fighting against the imperialist-revisionist encirclement and blockade and which has set to large-scale and all-round work for the rapid economic and cultural development of its country, which is working tirelessly for the strengthening of the defence capacity of its socialist Homeland, should cause and seek cessation of economic co-operation with China, refuse its civil and military loans and aid. Inspired by the teachings of Marxism-Leninism and the principles of proletarian internationalism, the Albanian people, their Party and Government have sincerely and consistently fought for the strengthening of friendship, fraternal co-operation and mutual aid between Albania and China.
Now, as in the past, the Albanian people, their Party and Government stick to their assessments of this aid and its role, among other external factors, in the development of our country. Socialist Albania has never considered its friendship with the peoples of other countries a means of economic profit. At the same time, it has permitted nobody to consider economic aid and co-operation an investment whereby political and ideological views, which run counter to Marxism-Leninism and socialism, are dictated to, and imposed on, our country. The People‘s Socialist Republic of Albania has never sold out its principles, it has never traded on them.
When the Party of Labour of Albania defended the Communist Party of China from the attack of the Khrushchevite revisionists at the Bucharest and Moscow Meetings of the Communist and Workers‘ Parties in 1960, it did so in full consciousness in order to defend the principles of Marxism-Leninism, and not to be given some factories and some tractors by China in return. When socialist Albania, for many years on end, defended the rights of People‘s China at the UNO against the US plot, it was not doing so for material interests, but for the defence of a just and principled cause. When the Party of Labour of Albania and our working class supported the strategic aims of the Cultural Revolution in China, they were not doing so for the sake of compensation, but out of their will to assist the working class, the communists and people of China to save their country from the capitalist elements who had usurped power in China.
Tendentiously listing a series of figures about China‘s aid to Albania, the Chinese note of July 7 reflects the desire of the Chinese leadership to boast before the world. It is acting in the same way as the Soviet revisionist leadership, which with the boast fullness of the great state, constantly advertises the “aid” it has once granted to Albania.
The Albanian people, Party and Government have never denied the aid of the People‘s Republic of China and its role in the economic development of our country. They have acknowledged and appreciated this aid, proceeding from their sincere feelings and thinking that it came from a friendly state and was given in the spirit of the principles of socialism. Yet, while making an exaggerated and embellished description of the Chinese economic and military aid to Albania, the Chinese note has no word about the fact that Albania, too, has aided China, as the Chinese leaders themselves have declared time and again, previously. Appreciating the aid Albania has given China, Mao Tsetung said: “First of all, we must thank you, because you stand in the forefront, because you are in very difficult situations and persistently fight to defend Marxism Leninism. This is a very valuable thing, this is most valuable” (Prom minutes of a meeting with an Albanian delegation, June 29, 1962).
In its note, the Chinese Government tries to create the impression, in the public opinion, that if Albania has had any success in its economic development, this, allegedly, is due to Chinese aid.
When all this is calculated according to official documentation and concrete facts, then it will be seen who owes who and how much. In the Chinese note China‘s aid to Albania is presented as the decisive factor in our country‘s development. But it has never been, nor could it ever be, such a factor. The decisive factor, which nobody can deny, has been the resolute, persistent and heroic work and struggle of the Albanian people, under the leadership of the Party of Labour of Albania, for the construction of socialism according to the Leninist principle of self-reliance. The brilliant successes attained by Albania in the construction of socialism and the defence of the country are the deed of the Party of Labour of Albania, of the Albanian state of the dictatorship of the proletariat, of the Albanian people, and not the result of external aid. The aid received from China has been only an auxiliary factor. The total value of the Chinese credits utilized by Albania up to the end of 1977 amounted to a very small percentage of our national income. This is the reality, and not its false presentation by the Chinese side which tries to create the impression as if it is China that has kept the Albanian people alive. The chauvinistic concepts of the great state have clouded the minds of the Chinese leadership and have made it speak in the language of feudal landlords.
This lays bare the spirit of intrigue of the Chinese leadership and its desire to see Albania politically, ideologically and economically enslaved by Soviet social imperialism or American imperialism and the reactionary bourgeoisie. The Chinese leadership speaks so because it thinks that Albania is isolated, that it could breathe and live only through China, and that now it has remained on the streets and will fall into the trap laid by the imperialists or the social imperialists. This is what Khrushchev and Mikoyan thought when they once said that Albania would sell itself out “for thirty pieces of silver”, that “without Soviet aid it would die of starvation, within fifteen days!”
But life showed that Albania did not sell itself out, nor did it die of starvation. It forged ahead with great success in the construction of socialism. And this was done not with Chinese aid, but with the heroic work and glorious struggle of the Albanian people.
Ideological Problems & Revisionism of the Chinese Communist Party
The unilateral breach of the agreements on economic and military co-operation with Albania by the Chinese Government, the arbitrary violation on its part of the contracts officially concluded between the two countries, the suspension of work on many projects important to our socialist economy, the ordering back of its experts, and so on, reflect a definite political and ideological line of the Chinese leadership. They are the outcome of the departure of the Chinese leadership from Marxism Leninism and the principles of proletarian internationalism, of its rapprochement to and collaboration with American imperialism, the international bourgeoisie and reaction, of its renunciation of aid to and support for the revolutionary and liberation forces in the international arena, of China‘s intentions to become an imperialist superpower. This course of the Chinese leadership, which went through a zigzag process, has come up against the constant opposition of the Party of Labour of Albania which cherishes the cause of socialism, the revolution and the liberation of the peoples above everything else.
This accounts for the emergence of serious ideological and political contradictions which have been gradually growing between the Party of Labour of Albania and the Communist Party of China. Precisely because our Party and the Albanian people did not accept and did not submit to the Chinese line and views of a great power, the leadership of the Communist Party of China and the Chinese Government went to such lengths as to cut all aid to socialist Albania, and extended ideological disagreements to interstate relations. All along, the Central Committee of the Party of Labour of Albania has tried to settle these differences on a Marxist-Leninist road, through mutual consultations and comradely explanations, never making them public. On this question, our Party has proceeded from the principle that differences and misunderstandings may arise among various parties and states, even when they have relations of close friendship.
In its relations with the Communist Party of China, the Party of Labour of Albania has rigorously abided by these Marxist Leninist principles and norms which are implemented among genuine communist parties. Whenever it has seen that the Communist Party of China adopted stands and took actions in opposition to Marxism Leninism and proletarian internationalism, in opposition to the interests of socialism and the revolution, it has pointed out the mistakes to, and criticized it in a comradely manner.
The leadership of the Communist Party of China has never wanted the Leninist norms and methods to be implemented in relations among parties. Reasoning and acting according to the concepts and logic of a great power, of a great party and a great state, which considers itself an infallible genius, it has demonstrated that it knows no other way apart from dictate and imposition of its views on the others, especially on the smaller parties and states.
China & the USSR
The struggle of the Party of Labour of Albania against modern revisionism had begun even prior to the condemnation of Titoism by the Inform bureau. It continued more fiercely after Stalin‘s death, when the Khrushchevite variant of revisionism began to show up. Our Party extended and intensified this struggle more and more, rising in opposition against the anti-Marxist attitudes and actions of Khrushchev and his gang, both in their foreign policy and in their relations with the communist parties, with our Party in particular. The Khrushchevite deviation represented the revision of the Marxist Leninist theory in all fields and on all questions. The Khrushchevite strategy was aimed at undermining the dictator ship of the proletariat and restoring capitalism in the Soviet Union, transforming this country into an imperialist superpower, for the division and domination of the world together with American imperialism. In order to realize this strategy, Khrushchev attacked Stalin and Bolshevism, he advocated extinction of class struggle both within the Soviet Union and outside it.
On the pretext that the ratio of forces in the world today had changed, that the imperialism and the international reactionary bourgeoisie had become reasonable, he justified his abandonment of the key thesis of Marxism-Leninism on the violent revolution and spread illusions about the so-called peaceful road. In their relations with the communist and workers’ parties, the Khrushchevites acted according to their concept of the “mother party” and “conductor‘s baton.” They wanted the other parties to submit to their dictate and adopt their views, to transform them into tools of their foreign policy. On this road, Khrushchev, Brezhnev and others reconciled themselves to the Yugoslav revisionists and made common cause with them in the struggle against Marxism-Leninism and the revolution. To this traitorous and counter-revolutionary line of Khrushchevism the Party of Labour of Albania responded with its determined and unyielding fight.
The Bucharest Meeting and, later, the Conference of the 81 Communist and Workers‘ Parties in Moscow marked the final split between the Marxist Leninists and Khrushchevite revisionists, and the beginning of the open polemics between them. Whereas our Party initiated and carried on the fight against Khrushchevite revisionism with consistency and resolve, the Chinese leadership wavered and failed to adopt clear-cut anti Khrushchevite stands.
The Chinese leadership argued its line of reconciliation with the Soviet revisionists with the need to unite “with everybody” against US imperialism, which, in its words, was the main enemy. Apart from other things, this opportunist thesis also expressed the illusions entertained by the Chinese leadership about the Soviet revisionist leaders. During the Peking talks, Teng Hsiao-ping declared to the delegation of the Central Committee of our Party: “it is impossible for Khrushchev to change and become like Tito… As a socialist country, the Soviet Union will never change” (From minutes of talks, June 11, 1962).
In this manner, when the reconciliation and agreement with the Soviet revisionists, so ardently sought by the Chinese leadership, did not materialize, only then the Communist Party of China effectively entered the road of anti-Khrushchevism and agreed to the determined, consistent and principled struggle of the Party of Labour of Albania. This could not fall to rejoice the Party of Labour of Albania and the Albanian people who, single-handed, were for almost three years then facing up to the open frenzied attacks of Khrushchev and entire modern revisionism.
In Summer 1964 Chinese propaganda took up the Sino-Soviet border problem. Referring to a talk of Mao Tsetung with a group of Japanese socialist parliamentarians, it claimed that China had been dispossessed by the Russian Tzars of vast territories of hundreds of thousands of square kilometres, that in Europe, too, the Soviet Union had territorial problems which had emerged as a result of the Second World War. The Party of Labour of Albania did not approve of Mao Tsetung‘s raising the problem of rectification of borders. According to the view of our Party, the Chinese leadership was making two gross mistakes.
In the first place, the raising of the border problem at that moment did not assist the ideological struggle against Khrushchevism. On the contrary, it provided the Soviet leadership with a powerful weapon against China and the Marxist-Leninists in order to neutralize the effect of the ideological struggle they were waging to expose the Khrushchevite betrayal and to present our struggle as a border dispute or territorial claims. On the other hand, by calling into question the rectification of the borders of the Soviet Union with some European countries following the Second World War, J. V. Stalin was unjustly attacked, and the accusation levelled by international reaction against him for creating “spheres of influence” was backed up.
In keeping with Leninist norms, in the spirit of complete correctness and in a comradely manner, the Central Committee of the Party of Labour of Albania informed the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and Chairman Mao Tsetung personally of its opinions on these questions in a letter addressed to them on September 10, 1964. The letter reads in part: “We think that raising territorial problems with the Soviet Union now would gravely harm our struggle. If we were to do this, we would be giving the enemy a powerful weapon to fight us, and this would paralyse our march forward. Under the pressure of Khrushchev‘s revisionist propaganda, under the influence of Khrushchev‘s slanders and calumnies, and for many other reasons, the masses of the Soviet people will not understand why People‘s China is now putting forth territorial claims to the Soviet Union, they will not accept this, and Soviet propaganda is working to make them revolt against you. But we think that even true Soviet communists will not understand it, nor will they accept it. This would be a colossal loss for our struggle…we think that we must not open old wounds, if any, we must not start a controversy and polemics over whether or not the Soviet Union has appropriated other countries‘ land, but our only concentrated struggle should be spearheaded against the great ulcer, against the great betrayal represented by imperialism and modern revisionism, the traitor groups of Khrushchev, Tito and all their henchmen”. The Central Committee of the Communist Party of China did not reply to the principled and correct letter of our Party.
The great ideas of the Great October Socialist Revolution and the Marxist Leninist ideology were not properly made the example for, the pillar and the compass of, the Communist Party of China in the concrete conditions of its country. This accounts for the fact that the Marxist Leninist nucleus of the Party slipped into dangerous eclecticism, which gave rise to a chaos of unbridled struggle for power between factions, persons and groups holding various non-Marxist Leninist views, something which seriously hampered the laying of the foundations of socialism in China. This political ideological and organizational chaos in the Communist Party of China and the Chinese state enabled capitalist and revisionist elements to seize key positions in the Party, in the state power and in the army. In these conditions, the Cultural Revolution, inspired and led by Mao Tsetung personally, broke out. The Party of Labour of Albania supported the general strategy of the Cultural Revolution. But we want to stress that our Party supported the strategy of this revolution and not all its tactics, it defended with determination the cause of socialism in China, defended the fraternal Chinese people, the Communist Party of China and the revolution, it did not defend at all the factionalist struggle of the anti Marxist groups, whoever clashed and wrangled with each other, resorting even to arms, overtly or covertly, in order to retake state power. The Cultural Revolution, more often than not, preserved the spirit and actions of an unprincipled struggle, which was not led by a genuine party of the working class which should strive for the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat. Thus, these clashes among factionalist groups ended in the establishment in China of a state power dominated by bourgeois and revisionist elements.
On that occasion, Chou En-lai openly put forth to Beqir Balluku the view of your leadership, according to which, Albania, as a small country, had no need of heavy armament and that it was not at all in a position to defend itself alone from foreign aggression, particularly from Soviet social imperialism and US imperialism, no matter how much military aid it would receive from China. Therefore, according to Chou En-lai, the only road for Albania to cope with foreign aggression was that of applying the tactics of partisan warfare in the country and concluding a military alliance with Yugoslavia and with Rumania. When our delegation came home, Beqir Balluku informed the Political Bureau of Chou En-lai‘s proposal. The Political Bureau of the Central Committee of our Party unanimously condemned and rejected Chou En-lai‘s anti Albanian and counter-revolutionary proposal. […] Chou En-lai repeated this same thesis to the Albanian Government delegation which had gone to Peking in July 1975, to conclude an agreement on China‘s economic aid to Albania for the 6th Five-year Plan 1976-1980. This thesis was turned down again by our delegation in a clear-cut and categorical manner.
The change of China‘s strategy has come about as a result of an internal struggle within its Communist Party where deep contradictions existed, “a hundred flowers blossomed and a hundred schools contended”, where there were pro-Khrushchevites, pro-Americans, opportunists and revolutionaries in the leadership. This accounts for the successive changes in the political line of the Communist Party of China, its vacillating, opportunist, and contradictory attitudes towards US imperialism, modern revisionism and international reaction.
China, Nixon & US Imperialism
While our Party was working to strengthen fraternal co-operation with China, while it wanted to correctly wage and intensify the struggle against imperialism, modern revisionism and reaction on a joint front also with all the Marxist Leninist parties and forces, China saw everything only from its own angle, it wanted to dominate others, so that the latter would follow its strategy and tactics. The events that were taking place revealed ever more clearly that the political and ideological struggle of the Communist Party of China against the Khrushchevites did not proceed from a sound basis, in reality, its aim was not to defend Marxism Leninisrn, the revolution and the liberation of peoples. lt was waged simply for pragmatic ends and selfish interests. This became evident in the radical change of the Chinese strategy, to which Nixon‘s visit to Peking officially set the seal.
In the summer of 1971, Albania, considered the closest ally of China, learned from foreign news agencies the report spread all over the world that Kissinger had paid a secret visit to Peking. Negotiations, which marked a radical change in the Chinese policy, had been held with Kissinger. As in other cases, this time too, though the question was about a major political turn, a change in the strategic line, the Communist Party and the Government of the People‘s Republic of China did not deem it necessary to hold preliminary talks with the Party of Labour and the Government of Albania, too, to see what their opinion was. The Chinese leadership put others before an accomplished fact, thinking they had to obey it without a word. It was clear to our Party that Nixon‘s visit to Peking was not an upgrading of the talks that were going on till then in Warsaw between the Chinese and U S ambassadors, that it was not made to promote “people‘s diplomacy” and to pave the road to contacts with the American people, as the Chinese leaders claimed. Nixon‘s visit to Peking was laying the foundations of a new policy on the part of China.
With Nixon‘s visit, China joined the dance of imperialist alliances and rivalries for the redivision of the world, where China, too, would have its own share. This visit paved the road to its rapprochement and collaboration with US imperialism and its allies. At the same time, the inauguration of the alliance with the United States of America also marked the abandoning on the part of the Chinese leadership of the genuine socialist countries, the Marxist-Leninist movement, the revolution and the national liberation struggle of the peoples. This alliance and meeting in Peking, between the Chinese leadership and the American President Nixon, were taking place at a time when the US was waging its predatory imperialist war in heroic Vietnam, when it was using all its most up-to-date means of war, except for the A-bomb, to kill the fraternal heroic Vietnamese people and to reduce Vietnam to ashes. This monstrous alliance and the Sino-US contacts were condemnable acts of disastrous consequences for the peoples. Therefore, in view of this dangerous turn in the foreign policy of China, on August 6, 1971, the Central Committee of the Party of Labour of Albania sent a long letter to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, stressing in no uncertain terms that it was against this turn of China, which ran counter to the interests of People‘s China itself, the revolution and socialism.
The letter reads in part: – We regard your decision to welcome Nixon in Peking as incorrect and undesirable, we do not approve of, nor do we support, it. We also hold the view that Nixon‘s announced visit to China will be inconceivable to, and will not be approved by, the peoples, the revolutionaries and the communists of various countries. Welcoming Nixon to China, who is known as a frenzied anti-communist, an aggressor and assassin of the peoples, as a representative of blackest US reaction, has many drawbacks and will have negative consequences for the revolutionary movement and our cause.
Nixon‘s going to China and his talks there cannot fail to arouse harmful illusions among the rank-and-file, the peoples and the revolutionaries, about US imperialism, its strategy and policy. “Talks with Nixon provide the revisionists with weapons to negate the entire great struggle and polemics of the Communist Party of China to expose the Soviet renegades as allies and collaborators of US imperialism, and to put on a par China‘s stand towards US imperialism and the treacherous line of collusion pursued by the Soviet revisionists towards it. This enables the Khrushchevite revisionists to flaunt their banner of false anti-imperialism even more ostentatiously and to step up their demagogical and deceitful propaganda in order to bring the anti-imperialist forces round to themselves. The visit of the US President to China will give rise to doubts and misunderstandings among the rank-and-file who may suspect that China is changing its stand towards US imperialism and involving itself in the garne of the superpowers. Our strategy calls for close alliance with the peoples fighting all over the world, with all the revolutionaries, on a joint front against imperialism and social imperialism, and never for an alliance with Soviet social-imperialisrn allegedly against US imperialism, never for an alliance with US imperialism allegedly against Soviet social imperialism”. In conclusion, the letter points out that “the line and attitudes of the Party of Labour of Albania will always remain principled, consistent, unchanging. We will combat US imperialism and Soviet revisionism uncompromisingly and consistently”. The letter expressed the hope that the remarks the Party of Labour of Albania made to a sister party “would be taken up in a comradely spirit and understood correctly”. The Chinese leadership adopted its usual stand also towards this letter.
After Nixon‘s visit to China, the Chinese strategy again speaks of a “broad united front”, but this time it includes “all those who can be united”, incorporating in it even the United States of America against Soviet social-imperialism.
The “Three Worlds Theory”
After its rapprochement with US imperialism and overtures to the United States of America and its allies, the leadership of the Communist Party of China proclaimed the anti Marxist and counterrevolutionary theory of the “three worlds,” which it presented as a strategy of the revolution, and made efforts to impose it on the Marxist Leninist communist movement and all the peoples of the world as the general line of their struggle.
It is seeking to impose China‘s counterrevolutionary turn of unity with US imperialism and world reaction on all Marxist-Leninists, to have the entire revolutionary and liberation movement accept its anti-Leninist concepts and analyses of imperialism, the present-day world situation, alliances, and so on, as an absolute and incontrovertible truth. Practice shows that in most cases, the Communist Party and Government of China have not viewed international issues from the angle of Marxism-Leninism, the interests of the revolution and the liberation struggles of the peoples. Chinese policy is a pragmatic policy, and it cannot be otherwise, in as much as its strategy and tactics are such. Therefore the world has witnessed and will witness about-faces in the Chinese strategy and politics in the future, too. These turns are passed off as Marxist Leninist, but in reality they are anti Marxist, they are turns catering to the interests of the big China state in its search of alliances with US imperialism, Soviet social-imperialism and world capital to create and build China into an imperialist superpower.
At present, the Chinese plan to become a superpower has found its concentrated expression in the infamous theory of “three worlds”. The theory of “three worlds” seeks to replace Marxism-Leninism with an eclectic amalgamation of opportunist, revisionist and anarchic syndicalist ideas and theses, it seeks to dampen the revolutionary spirit of the proletariat and its class struggle, advocating an alliance with the bourgeoisie and imperialism. Alleging that time is not ripe for revolution, the theory of “three worlds” seeks to preserve the status quo, the present situation of capitalist, colonialist and neo-colonialist oppression and exploitation. Under the hoax of defence of national independence from Soviet social-imperialism which it regards as the only danger and threat today, China requires the peoples to give up their struggle for national, economic, and social liberation, to submit to US imperialism and the other capitalist powers of the West, the former colonialists. It presses for the strengthening of the Common Market and the European Union, organisms set up to keep the proletariat of Europe in capitalist bondage and to oppress and exploit the peoples of other countries. By fanning up the armaments race of the superpowers and relying on such instruments of war of US imperialism as NATO and other military blocs, the theory of “three worlds” instigates imperialist world war.
The theory of “three worlds” is a smokescreen to hide China‘s ambition for hegemony over what it calls the “third world”. It is no accident that it has included itself in the third world and presents itself as its leader in the international arena. It is no accident either that the Chinese leadership is flirting with the “non-aligned” and seeking to take them under its wing. The Chinese leadership is not the first to display its “affection” and “care” for the so-called “third world”. The imperialists, the social imperialists and the other neo-colonialists have worked out various theories on the “third world” long ago before it, in order to dominate and subjugate the countries and peoples of this “world”. Therefore, it is a futile effort on the part of the Chinese leadership to claim that it is the first, as early as 1974, to have produced this theory on the basis of an allegedly objective analysis of the international situations made by Mao Tsetung.
Therefore, it is not the (Party of Labour of Albania which attacks the Chinese inventor or champions of this theory; it is precisely the latter who were the first to attack the Party of Labour of Albania and the struggle it has waged against this theory of world reaction, the struggle It has conducted in support of the freedom and independence of the peoples of Africa, Asia, Latin America, etc. The implementation of the theory of “three worlds” led the Chinese leadership to unite even with the “devil”, to unite with the US imperialists and the monopolists of Europe, with fascists and racists, kings and feudal lords, most rabid militarists and warmongers. Pinochet and Franco, former nazi generals of the German Wehrmacht and the Japanese imperial army, dyed-in-the-wool criminals like Mobutu and bloodthirsty kings, American bosses and presidents of multinational companies, became its allies. This anti -arxist line led China‘s leadership to unite with Tito, Carillo and other revisionists. At one time, it was against Tito, whereas now it has united with him. This testifies to its lack of Marxist Leninist principles, to inconsistencies in its line.
By cutting short aid to socialist Albania, at a time when China receives substantial aid and credits from US imperialism and world capitalism and accords aid and credits to their agents like Mobutu and his ilk, the Chinese leadership openly shows world public opinion that it does not agree ideologically with a truly socialist country, but it agrees and is in alliance with the enemies of socialism and the reactionaries, that it is against the socialist order, against the countries and peoples who demand liberation precisely from imperialism and social imperialism, from oppression and dictate by big state chauvinism.
The People‘s Socialist Republic of Albania and the Albanian people, under the consistent leadership of the Party of Labour of Albania, with Comrade Enver Hoxha at the head, will thoroughly and honourably fulfil their historic mission for the construction of socialism by relying on their own forces, further proving to the proletariat and all the peoples of the world the inexhaustible and indomitable vitality of the Marxist Leninist ideology, which enables even a small country, encircled by imperialism and revisionism, as Albania is, to build socialism successfully, to defend and carry it always ahead. Albania will never submit to anybody, it will stand to the end loyal to Marxism Leninism and proletarian internationalism. I will march non-stop on the road of socialism and communism illuminated by the immortal teachings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin. The Albanian people, with the Party of Labour at the head, will resolutely and consistently support the revolutionary and liberation struggles of the peoples, their efforts for freedom, independence and social progress. They will fight uncompromisingly through to the very end against US imperialism, Soviet social imperialism, modern revisionism and world reaction. Albania has never bowed its back or its head, either in the past or today, nor will it ever do so in the future. The Chinese leadership will fall both in its sermons and in its intrigues. The reactionary act it committed against Albania is revolting to the conscience of every honest man and woman in the world. Though encircled, socialist Albania is not isolated because it enjoys the respect and love of the world proletariat, the freedom loving peoples and the honest men and women throughout the world. This respect and love will grow even more in the future. Our cause is just! Socialist Albania will triumph!
The Processes of Capitalist Development of the Chinese Economy
By Tomor Cerova — Docent, Professor at the Faculty of Economics at the University of Tirana
In the economic, as in all the other fields, the Chinese revisionists have been spreading for many years now reformist, opportunistand revisionist views, and implementing the same practices either invented by them or borrowed from the old and new bourgeois and revisionist enemies, which are in open contradiction to the teachings of Marxism-Leninism, the experience of the great October Socialist Revolution and the practice of socialist construction.
In order to transform China into a superpower, the heads of Chinese revisionism draw extensively from the pragmatic and profoundly anti-socialist economic policy they have worked out and continue to follow persistently. At present this policy is centred round the “four modernizations” which, in the field of economy, aim to rush the implementation in practice of a series of reforms and reorganizations in order to put the Chinese economy definitively on the rails of the market economy, to open the doors to imperialist capital.
The Chinese revisionists have set their economy into the road of capitalist development more and more with each passing day. Their propaganda now is quite openly advertising bourgeois and revisionist views. They claim that “the concepts of a planned economy and a market economy do not in the least contradict each other”, that “the law of value should be utilized as a regulator, since it stands above all the other economic laws”, that “production should change in step with market changes”, that “unified distribution of the means of production and unified purchase of consumer goods by the state are not good”, etc.. etc. On this basis, the Chinese corporations now have been given the right to make direct contact with foreign monopolies and to keep, according to the Yugoslav model, part of the profits for themselves. Most advantageous conditions have been and are being created for the further inflow of foreign monopoly capital into China, moreover the recent session of China’s National Assembly passed a new law which came immediately into force, under which investments of foreign capital in China are encouraged and the rights of foreign investors protected. This law permits the setting up of the so-called “joint enterprises” on foreign and Chinese capital in various branches of the economy, guarantees foreign investors the right of sharing in the profit according to the amount of invested capital, as well as the right to take this profit outside China; it even accords them the privilege of being exempted from taxation on profits. Still according to the above law, foreign investors will also have the right to appoint directors and vice-directors to the “joint enterprises”, through whom they will be able to dictate both the plans of production and sale, and the recruitment or dismissal of workers, and the level of their wages. Hence, the readiness of the business circles of the capitalist world to express their enthusiasm over this new law of the Chinese revisionists, declaring that it was “extremely liberal” and that “it would be followed by an influx of foreign businessmen eager to invest in this country”.
These anti-Marxist views and practices are neither casual aberrations of the Chinese revisionists nor something detached from the whole policy and ideology they have been following and implementing. Nevertheless, their coming out so openly in this direction the more readily exposes the whole processes of the Chinese economy on the road of capitalism.
In essence, the whole processes and all the metamorphoses the Chinese economy has undergone on its road of capitalist development show that both in theory and practice, the Chinese revisionists have opposed the opportunist thesis of “gradual integration of the capitalist economy into the socialist economy”, to the principle of the absolute need for the expropriation of the bourgeoisie by the proletariat and the socialization of the means of production, they have opposed spontaneous, anarchic development and capitalist competition, disguised under the slogan of “the development of the economy by leaps”, to the law of planned proportional development of the economy, they have opposed the revisionist thesis on the “advantage of credits, loans and advanced technology” taken from the big monopolies of the developed capitalist countries to the socialist principle of self-reliance, etc. In this way, as Comrade Enver Hoxha points out, the Chinese revisionists never, at no historical stage, put their economy on the road of socialist development. The noise they have made and are continuing to make about the “great” results they have allegedly achieved in the field of the construction of socialism is nothing other but part of their cunning propaganda to pose as revolutionaries in order to carry put their treacherous work more easily to the detriment of the vital interests of the proletariat and the working masses of China, as the zealous servants of the capitalist bourgeoisie they are.
“Mao Tsetung thought” has been and remains the ideological basis of capitalist metamorphoses in the Chinese economy.
The economic policy followed by the Chinese revisionists has always been based on “Mao Tsetung thought”, which, as Comrade Enver Hoxha points out, is nothing but “an amalgam of views in which ideas and theses borrowed from Marxists are mingled with other idealist, pragmatic and revisionist philosophical principles” (E. Hoxha, “Imperialism and the Revolution”, p. 388).
An important place in “Mao Tsetung thought” is occupied by revisionist distortions of a series of essential problems of Marxism-Leninism related to the economy. Proceeding from Mao Tsetung’s idea that the development of capitalism is allegedly in the interest of the people, that the contradictions between the working class and the big bourgeoisie in the Chinese conditions are allegedly “contradictions amongst the people” and that allegedly they must be resolved through democratic methods, they have promulgated and continue to promulgate many decrees and laws which do not affect the interests of the big bourgeoisie, the kulaks and foreign monopolies, which made and continue to make them many concessions to the detriment of the interests of the working masses.
A considerably long time passed before the land reform was implemented, a considerable number of private enterprises were not nationalized and those nationalizations that were made had a capitalist character, because they were carried out against compensation, with their owners being paid the full value of the property. In the field of organization and management of production, the distribution of material blessings, investments, utilization of accumulated funds, development of internal and foreign trade, according to “Mao Tsetung thought”, anti-Marxist forms and ways which defend the interests of the bourgeoisie, which ensure the development of the economy on the capitalist road, were used and are still used. At the same time, not unlike the revisionists of other countries and times, the Chinese revisionists have tried to coat their treacherous actions with revolutionary phrases and to present them as creative implementation of Marxism-Leninism in the conditions of China.
When Mao Tsetung had not yet come to the head of the Communist Party of China, he was the author of many revisionist formulations, theses and slogans which advocated the conciliation of the interests of the working class and labouring peasantry, on the other hand, with the interests of the big bourgeoisie landowners and kulaks, on the other. He instructed that “As far as relations of work are concerned this two-sided policy is aimed, on the one hand, to help, possibilities allowing, improve the living of workers and, on the other hand, not to impede the development of the capitalist economy within reasonable limits. In the agrarian field, this two-sided policy, on the one hand, lays down the condition that the landowner should reduce the rent and the interest on loans and, on the other, exacts the payment by peasant of this reduced rent and interest” (Mao Tsetung, Selected Works, vol. 4, p. 13, Alb. ed.). Or in 1934 he pointed out: “Not only we do not hinder the private economic activity, but on the contrary we encourage and stimulate it, if the owners of private enterprises do not violate the laws promulgated by the government, because the development of the private economy now is necessary, it is in the interests of the state and the people” (Mao Tsetung, Selected Works, vol. 1, p, 180, Alb. ed.). And, raising this question to principle, he stressed that “The labour legislation of the People’s Republic defends the interests of the workers, but it is not directed against the enrichment of the national bourgeoisie… for this development is not in the interest of imperialism, but in the interest of the Chinese people” (Mao Tsetung, Selected works, vol. 1, p. 209, Alb. ed.).
To accept that the development of the capitalist economy furthers the interests of the people means to renounce the revolutionary road, to become servant and defender of the big bourgeoisie which works for the perpetuation of the capitalist exploitation of the working masses.
After the proclamation of the PR of China, in 1949, the Chinese revisionists with Mao Tsetung at the head, carried on their anti-Marxist course both in theory and in practice. But the internal and external conditions which existed at that time forced them to honour some of the promises they had made to the working masses during the civil war, though even these did not go beyond the tasks of the bourgeois-democratic revolution. These measures were received with joy by the working people in China and also hailed by the revolutionary forces of the world. But, as their later activity showed, the Chinese revisionists did not intend to deepen them further and to set the. Chinese economy on the road of socialist development. After Stalin’s death and the advent of Khrushchevite revisionism to power in particular, Mao Tsetung and his collaborators not only supported the revisionist course in the Soviet Union and the other countries, but at the same time came out openly with their anti-Marxist theses on the dying out of the class struggle, the integration of capitalism into socialism, the definition of state capitalism as a form of socialist construction, etc. These anti-Marxist theses which were included in “Mao Tsetung thought” underlie practical actions in the field of the economy. It is obvious from this that the Chinese economy has developed and continues to develop on the capitalist road, because it is known that without the leadership of the Marxist-Leninist party, without establishing the dictatorship of the proletariat, without waging the class struggle, without affecting the economic interests of the big bourgeoisie, socialist relations of production cannot be established and developed.
While acting as servants of the Chinese and international big bourgeoisie, the Chinese revisionists never cease in make a big noise about their building socialism in the “conditions” and with the “peculiarities” of China. They distort the teachings of Marxism-Leninism in the most despicable manner. Thus, for example, in their efforts to present state capitalism or state-private capitalism as a socialist form of the economy, they try to justify it with the policy of NEP which was implemented as a temporary withdrawal in the Soviet Union, but they pass in silence the extremely short period of this withdrawal and the lessons that were drawn from it, fail to mention the whole experience of the October Socialist Revolution in the direction of the socialization of the means of production without compensation, of the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat against the exploiting classes, the planned development of the economy according to the directives laid down by a Marxist-Leninist party.
It is known that Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin gave the proletariat and the oppressed masses scientific socialism, discovered the general laws of the construction of socialism, such as the carrying out of the revolution through violence, the establishment and ceaseless strengthening of the dictatorship of the proletariat, the socialization of the means of production, the enhancement of the leading role of the Marxist-Leninist party, etc. They have argued that the class struggle and the proletarian revolution are not aims in themselves, but through them the emancipation of the oppressed classes is realized, conditions for their general development and the raising of their standard of living and general well-being are created. However, contrary to these teachings, the Chinese revisionists have gone so far as to declare that Marx’s theory does not define the ways of the construction of socialism and communism and that allegedly the Chinese have discovered them. The newspaper “Guanmin Zhibao” of January 29, 1959 states that Marx, Engels and Lenin “have not indicated the forms of transition”, that “we found the best organizational form of the construction of socialism and the gradual transition to communism”.
The sophisms and the eclectic, pragmatic formulations, the anti-socialist ideological platform, as well as the pro-bourgeois, pro-imperialist stands of the Chinese revisionists have always been at the basis of all their actions in the field of the economy, too. This has caused China serious damage and created a gloomy outlook for it.
Some of the main roads of capitalist development of the Chinese industry and agriculture
The revisionist course of the Chinese leadership in the economy is materialized in the long-standing utilization of various capitalist ways and forms. Thus, with the property confiscated from the main war criminals and the nationalized enterprises that belonged to the monopolies of the fascist coalition, as well as the capital which belonged to the bureaucratic apparatuses, as early as 1949, the state sector of the economy was set up. However, this sector never assumed socialist features, because, while the means of production of this sector were proclaimed state property, distribution of goods was still left in the hands of capitalists who, through trade commissions, handled the sale of goods produced in the state sector, and in return for this enjoyed the right of appropriating the profit that was created through the differential between wholesale and retail prices. For example, in 1957 the Tiamen State Coal Enterprise sold its production through 1,400 private units, which, under the contracts, took 15 per cent of the income from the sale; the Fats and Oil Enterprise carried out its sales through 1,200 private units, which had the right to share 14-16 per cent of the income, etc. The old and new capitalist elements, being the true lords in the field of distribution of goods of the state sector, not only met their own needs and those of private enterprises, but, through their market transactions, also participated directly in the exploitation of the working class engaged in the state sector. In this way, instead of developing as a socialist sector of the economy, right from the first years of its existence, the state sector of production developed as a capitalist sector.
About the other capitalist enterprises, the Chinese revisionists declared that, after studying the situation, they would take measures to transform them into socialist property. But this remained a promise, because the measures that were taken later did not affect in the least the capitalist mode of production and distribution. It is a fact that from 1949 to 1951 commissions for the recording of the assets of capitalists, landlords and kulaks were set up and operated throughout China. State and capitalist representatives participated in these commissions. This being the first concession. The task of these commissions was to assess the assets, to study the situation of financial transactions, to record the property of capitalist enterprises and the capital invested by every capitalist in shareholders’ companies. This measure was intended to create the illusion among the Chinese working people that the new rulers were preparing for revolutionary measures, that they would nationalize the means of production in the city and the countryside. But in fact nothing of the sort happened. Though the Chinese leadership declared that private capital was estimated at 3 billion and 800 million yuan, however the state, with due regard for the “patriotic” character of the Chinese big bourgeoisie and with a desire to strengthen “unity” would not nationalize the assets immediately or within 20 years, paying them an annual 5 per cent of the value of their capital (From the book, “Socialist Transformations of Capitalist Industry and Commerce in China”, Peking, 1962, p. 55). Both the Chinese big bourgeoisie and the international big bourgeoisie rejoiced over this stand.
To achieve the so-called “integration of the capitalist economy into socialism” the Chinese revisionists utilize some forms which, with their content, ensure the road of capitalist development of the economy. Some enterprises of heavy industry, of rail and sea transport were bought over by the state with immediate compensation, and their owners were kept as directors and given fat salaries. The income accruing from the sale of these enterprises were deposited by the capitalists in the National Bank of China, which began immediately to pay them an interest rate equal to the average profit when the enterprises were their property. In this manner, the promise about the nationalization of the means of production was partially, though only formally and for demagogic reason, honoured, but the relations of exploitation were maintained, except that now the exploitation of the working masses by the bourgeoisie was achieved through finance capital.
The Chinese revisionists went into partnership with another section of capitalists by making investments from state funds in the capitalist enterprises, or by setting up new enterprises with joint funds of the state and the capitalists, In both categories of enterprises, the capitalists were recognized the right of sharing in the profits with the state to the extent of capital invested, of remaining in the more important leading posts and receiving wages from two to five times higher than those of high state functionaries for equal work. From this practice, until 1970 the Chinese big bourgeoisie made a profit of 6 billion 150 million yuan (2 billion 350 million yuan more than its estimated capital in the first years after liberation), of which 2 billion 800 million yuan from the sharing of profits and the rest from bonuses, from the 5 per cent interest rate and high salaries. This process continues up to this day. As the revisionist chiefs themselves have admitted, this practice includes also the Chinese capitalists who have assumed American citizenship, most of whom have emigrated for the crimes they have committed against the Chinese people and their close collaboration with the Chiang Kai-shek regime (From the newspaper “Wenhuibau”, May 1968).
Many other existing capitalist enterprises were left free to carry out their activity, while a number of capitalist enterprises were set up. In 1952, as against 1949, their number in the sector of industry grew 1.4 per cent and in trade – 7 per cent.
These data prove the fact that the capitalist sector, both in industry and trade, not only was not limited, but on the contrary, the conditions were created for it to develop further at rapid rates. This also for the fact that taxation on income was low and the private sector was assisted by the state through orders, raw materials, transport means and bank credits.
Under the slogan on the “valuable private initiative”, the Chinese revisionists encouraged the merchants and other elements bent on enrichment to set up enterprises for the production of broad consumer goods, spare parts and tools. Officially, these enterprises were called artisans’ collectives. They purchased the means of work from private owners with cash from the financial resources created through the contribution of their participants. The state exercised no control on them. Production assortments, working regime, prices, markets of sale, sources of raw materials and wages were laid down by the leading groups of these collectives. The incomes from the sale of goods were mostly appropriated by the new owners, for they were shared not only according to the work done, but also according to the contributions of each in the common fund, and it was but natural for the capitalist to come first. The Chinese publicised the setting up of these capitalist enterprises as an implementation of the principle of self-reliance and a means for reducing unemployment, while in reality they were used to assist the capitalist elements ruined by competition, as well as to increase the income of the new bureaucratic bourgeoisie from taxation on licences.
When the People’s Republic of China was proclaimed, there was one commercial bank with 50,000 employees, as well as 900 private banks. State control was established on capital as the National Bank, but the interests of its shareholders were not affected, whereas the other banks lost the right of exporting capital abroad, but were left free to such extent as they could even grant credits to capitalist elements. After 9 years the national bank “absorbed” the activity of private banks, but did not touch the interests of its shareholders. It recognized them the right of compensation with a 5 per cent interest rate as well as payment of bank interest. It continued to accord credits to private enterprises and to protect them against bankruptcy (Chen Lin and Nan Lei “Monetary Circulation in the PR of China”, 1959).
Both when they came to power and later the Chinese revisionists did not carry out the nationalization of the enterprises and capital belonging to the monopolies and various companies of the United States of America, Britain, France and other capitalist countries which carried on their activity in China. They justified this with their alleged desire to preserve “friendship” with the former countries of the anti-fascist coalition. This stand proves that the Chinese revisionists had been working for a long time to maintain good relations with the big imperialist monopolies and the powerful imperialist states. On the other hand, they wanted to use these enterprises as examples of the capitalist mode of production and as a basis of building their links with the big capitalist monopolies.
The setting up of new enterprises jointly-owned by the state and the capitalists, the participation of the state in the existing capitalist enterprises with investments, and the presentation of these enterprises as a socialist sector, was a flagrant distortion of the teachings of Marxism-Leninism, which led to the consolidation of private ownership in various forms. Thus, at present, three forms of capitalist ownership prevail in industry, trade and the other branches of the Chinese economy, namely state capitalist ownership resulting from the nationalized property of the bureaucratic bourgeoisie that was overthrown in 1949, and the confiscated property of the great war criminals and the monopolies of the countries of the fascist coalition; joint state and private capitalist ownership, comprising all the private enterprises in which the state makes investments, the new enterprises created with joint investments by the state and the capitalists, or through the merger of groups of state capitalist enterprises with private capitalist enterprises: alongside or them there also exists direct private ownership.
Both state capitalist ownership and joint state and private capitalist ownership have nothing in common with socialist ownership, because private ownership is preserved in various ways, in production and circulation, individual appropriation of the surplus value and exploitation of the workers by the bourgeoisie still exist there. This is proved by the fact that only in the period 1949-1970 the Chinese bourgeoisie has made a profit of 2,800 million yuan. There have been cases of such capitalist as Chun Yi-cheng, who in 1957 owned a capital of 18 million yuan and took a monthly profit equal to the total of the wages of 1,500 Chinese workers. (This year, this came capitalist headed the delegation of the Chinese industrialists to the GFR.) On a whole, average profit has steadily increased. Thus, in the period 1951-1955 it had grown to 20-30 per cent, from 13.7 per cent, which was the ceiling for the period before 1949 (Fram the bank “Modem History of Chinese Industry”, vol. 1. 1957).
The Chinese revisionist leadership has always tried to protect the national bourgeoisie and ensure the capitalist development of the economy. This has been apparent both in the field of propaganda and legislation. This has led to the actual expansion of private ownership, which otherwise should have been limited or altogether eliminated. Thus, in 1955 private property in Shanghai was estimated at 2 billion yuan as against 1,700 million yuan in 1950 (Wu Xian-the, “Questions of the Transformation of Capitalist Industry and Trade in the PR of China”, 1960).
Not only have the old Chinese capitalists made economic profits, but through the political rights they enjoy, they have also been allowed to occupy important posts in the economy and the legislative and state power organs. Thus, old capitalist elements occupied 50 per cent of the seats of the manager’s board of a dairy factory in the suburbs of Peking. In state capitalist enterprises and private enterprises prices are fixed by the capitalist, with the state representatives and the workers examining them only formally and returning them to the capitalist for approval. The capitalist has the right to share in the profits to an amount not less than 10 per cent and not more than 30 per cent. This formal restriction does not in the least worry the Chinese capitalists, because the margin of profit is very advantageous to them.
The Chinese revisionists have created a number of other privileges and facilities for the bourgeoisie as a class. They have guaranteed it the right to inherit means of production, bank deposits, to donate or transfer legacies, have given their heirs or any other people of their choice the right of drawing 5.5 per cent from the capital, and so on. This has caused that the number of capitalists in China has steadily increased with the passing years.
In the question or the land, too, the Chinese revisionists have followed the capitalist road of development. The land reform was implemented in the context of the measures taken during the bourgeois-democratic revolution. However, apart from the inherent weaknesses of the law on land reform a number of instructions were also issued with the aim of defending the interests of landowners and kulaks, In this manner, land reform was carried out contrary to the teachings of Marxism-Leninism. The law on land reform openly defended capitalist property in the countryside. Article 6 of the law on land reform has it that …“all the land which belongs to the rich peasants and which is cultivated by them or through hired labour, as well as any other property of the rich peasants is protected by the law and inviolable. This is the only way to defend the economy of rich peasants… all the not-too-large plots of land which the rich peasants have given out on rent, are protected and inviolable.”
Just as in industry, in agriculture, too, the land was estimated at a guaranteed price of 240 yuan for one mu (1/5 hectare). Encouraged by the promise that the plots of land purchased from the landowners and kulaks would remain property of the buyer, thousands of middle and poor peasants rushed to buy the most fertile plots from the landowners and became heavily indebted, This caused land prices to go up to nearly 5,000 yuan per mu. As for the plots of land which were not sold but distributed to the peasants under the law on land reform, the landowners and kulaks were entitled to an annual 5 per cent of compensation for the total value of the plot. In this manner, land reform was implemented through compensation, though in a disguised and indirect manner, not by the peasants, but by the state, which made up for this expenditure through a system of heavy taxation on land, income, etc.
Likewise, up till 1952 purchase and sale of land was permitted, and up till 1958 income in agricultural collectives was distributed according both to the amount of work done and the acreage of land and other agricultural tools put in the collectivized farm by each or its members. Forms of capitalist development are apparent in Chinese agriculture even after the setting up of people’s communes. Proceeding further on this road, under the slogan of encouraging private initiative, the Chinese revisionists in power allow incentives to be paid for piece-work; the member of the commune may engage in production and trade activities on his own after putting in a given number of work-days in the commune, and, moreover, in order to create the necessary conditions for him to do this, the personal plot has been increased.
Chinese revisionist propaganda has made shameless efforts to present the Chinese bourgeoisie as allegedly not having made its wealth through the exploitation of others but through its own frugality, and having allegedly accepted the road of the construction of socialism after the educative work which has been done with it. “Under crackling fireworks, with drums, songs and dance,” the Chinese propaganda boasted in 1951, “the Chinese bourgeoisie is setting out on the broad road of socialism.” “We have been generous towards bourgeois right elements,” Chou En-lai emphasized, “and helped those who wanted to be re-educated. We did not divest them of their civil rights, guaranteed their jobs and their standard of living.” Chou Fin-lai, “Report on the Activity of the Government at the First Sitting of the Second Legislature”, Peking, 1959, p. 51). In 1964, one of the revisionist chiefs of the time admitted: “The Chinese bourgeoisie goes with the Party, makes the revolution, builds socialism. This is the most wonderful bourgeoisie of the world” (!).
The Chinese revisionists have maintained close contact with the Chinese capitalists abroad. Implementing in practice Mao Tsetung’s assumption of the “patriotic spirit” of the big bourgeoisie, the government repeatedly called on the Chinese capitalists in different countries of the world to transfer part of their capital to Chinese state banks, guaranteeing them a high interest rate and refunding of capital whenever they wanted. And, in this way, under the guise of Chinese origin, not only the capital of Chinese capitalist emigrants, but also the capital of the monopolies of the developed capitalist countries poured into China. This capital grew from year to year till, in the end, it took the form of open credits and loans.
In order to strengthen their links with capitalist emigrants and the monopolies of capitalist countries, with the direct interest of the Chinese revisionist leaders, several capitalist companies have long before been created in Hong Kong, like the “Overseas Chinese Corporation” and others. These companies deal with the sale of shares to Chinese emigrants and other foreigners; with the accumulation of money and with capitalist investment and its administration in mainland China. Income from these transactions is used to set up several enterprises in China. Besides, a series of privileges have been created for Chinese capitalist emigrants and their relatives and parents in China. They are given land to make investments in and to exploit for a term of 20-50 years, are given an 8 per cent interest rate on capital invested in China, are permitted to build gaudy private villas, clubs and special schools for their children, etc. In this way, since 1964 the inflow of hard currency from capitalist emigrants is not less than 200 million dollars a year (from data of the review “South China Morning Post”, October 29, 1966), Whereas from open capitalist trade and bank activities in Hong Kong the Chinese revisionists have secured a net profit of about 27 billion dollars in 1967 through their banks, trade enterprises, cinemas and theatres, film studios and the sale of water, without mentioning profits from drug traffic (“Neue Züricher Zeitung”, July 3, 1967).
The collaboration of the Chinese revisionists with capitalist emigrants, as well as the further strengthening of these links, is making itself felt not only in the economic field, but also in the political, ideological, social and cultural fields.
Contrary to the teachings of the classics of Marxism-Leninism on the necessity for the planned and centralized development of economic activities, although as early as 1953 they have formally been drafting their 5-year-plans, the Chinese revisionists have employed various forms and means to encourage competition, anarchy and market speculations. As early as 1956 Mao Tsetung himself advanced the slogan: “We must pull down the limits of the plan”. To the law on the planned and proportionate development of the socialist economy they have always opposed their so-called method of development of the economy through leaps. V.I. Lenin, combating the views of Trotsky on development through leaps, has stressed that the leap is a priority, and all priority unforeseen under the plans of development of the economy is nothing other than spontaneity, a phenomenon characteristic of the capitalist economy.
Capitalist relations of production not only make it impossible for the Chinese economy to develop according to plan, but also prevent its centralized management. In 1970 about 80 per cent of the industrial enterprises which belonged to the state sector of the economy, and many state-private enterprises were transferred to local organs. This decentralization encouraged the directors of enterprises to divert production, investments, the structure of cost and prices from their final destination. In these conditions spontaneity, hankering after profits and competition flourished, self-administrative tendencies also developed. The chief of the Chinese revisionists, Hua Kuo-feng, expressed his open admiration for the capitalist system of “self-administration” during his visit in Yugoslavia last year. And now the capitalist “self-administrative” form is more and more extensively being implemented in China. In the name of “The Four Modernizations”, they have set up “production councils”, “workers committees”, and other such organisms which will operate like those of the “self-administrative” enterprises in Yugoslavia.
Decentralization became the cause for the creation of scores of thousands of small capitalist enterprises, which have become a source for swelling the bourgeois class with new elements, for further eliminating check-up on production and distributions. Speculations and other illegal activities have assumed broad extension, and cases of abuse and theft of primary materials, spare parts, etc. have increased.
Availing itself of the facilities created for it by the state, especially after the advent to power of Hua Kuo-feng and Teng Hsiao-ping, the bourgeoisie has tried to find new ways of profiteering, among which that of dodging taxes on goods production. In this context, secret companies have been created, among which a ship-yard for 500 ton ships, and the “cartel of 11 factories” operating in China’s major cities and controlling, on a cooperation basis, the production and wholesale of goods, etc. This group of the bourgeoisie declared: “In broad daylight we build socialism, in the dark of night we build capitalism”. But in fact, capitalism in China is being built both in broad daylight and in the dark of night, and this is the result of the preservation of the capitalist forms of the economy, of the ever greater degeneration of the bureaucratic bourgeoisie, of the negation of the class struggle and the dictatorship of the proletariat. The Chinese revisionist chiefs have recently adopted a number of measures for going further and deeper down the road of capitalist development, such as the restoration of all the rights and privileges of the capitalists, who will have all their capital in money, gold, or silver, as well as other assets, deposited in banks or confiscated during the cultural revolution, returned. Similarly, capitalist administrators have had their salaries and bonuses increases, so that they “could improve their living conditions”. By special decision of the State Council, in December 1978, remunerations for “inventions and technical modernisations” were approved. These remunerations attain 2,000 to 10,000 yuan per month, at a time when the average pay of the worker is 30-40 yuan a month. At the same time China has promised to give the American capitalists a compensation of about 200 million dollars for the assets which they once had in China.
Connections of the Chinese economy with capital of the big capitalist monopolies
In the field of economic relations with abroad, the Chinese revisionists have followed and continue to follow a reactionary policy which is fraught with dangerous consequences for the economy and the destinies of the Chinese people. In order to extricate themselves from their difficult economic situation, in order to step up the armaments race, which absorbs about 40 per cent of their state budget, they have come out quite openly in search of loans and credits from the monopolies and the developed capitalist countries. The facts about the connections which are being established and the agreements which are being entered into, are numerous. In comparison with the highest level of the period before 1949, foreign investments in China have increased five-fold with forecasts saying that they will increase much more in the future. The Chinese revisionists are cooperating closely with British Steel for the production of special steels, with Rolls-Royce for the construction of SHS-146 aircraft, the French company Pramatome, the West-German company KWU, and the American General Electric for the construction in China of four nuclear stations with a capacity of 600 MW each (according to the French review “Problèmes economiques”, No. 1617, April 1979).
The Chinese revisionists have great hopes in the Sino-Japanese relations. Up till today they have signed long-term agreements, extending up to the year 1990, about collaboration in the field of coal, copper, titanium, and wolfram and tin extraction, the development of non-ferrous metallurgy, etc. Japan has undertaken that till 1982 it will supply China with machinery and equipment estimated at 10 billion dollars and that it will buy from China oil and coat to the same value (from the Japanese review “Chensi Electronics”, No. 11, year 1978). China’s trade balance is more in favour of Japan, with the export of Japan to China being larger than the export of China to Japan. Thus China has begun to incur the first debts.
The Chinese economy is ever more every day into the claws of the big American monopolies. The Ministry of Trade of the USA has declared that trade exchanges between the USA and China for the year 1978 increased to 900 million dollars. Apart from this, the doors of China have been opened to large-scale American investments. Thus, Kayser Engineers are receiving numerous orders for the equipment to the iron mine of Nan Fein, east of Peking; Hotels Corporation has signed an agreement about the investment of 500 million dollars for hotel building in China; the General Motors Corporation and Ford Motor Company are investing for the construction of a powerful car industry in Simhum region, in the vicinity of Hong Kong.
The big capitalist monopolies know well the economic and political situation in China, its reserves of primary materials, the difficulties which the Chinese economy is passing through, etc. The information which they get from foreign intelligence services, especially the CIA, and which is also published from time to time in the press of the capitalist countries, serve the Western and the Japanese monopolies to enter those agreements in which they see greater advantages for themselves. The Chinese revisionists are participating in the intrigues of the imperialist powers to seize oil markets, to monopolize the technology of oil prospecting and processing and to control oil prices. Ii is known that China accounts for nearly 3 per cent of world oil production. Nevertheless, even with this little in its possession it tries to disorientate the oil market, by announcing the discovery of non-existent sources, and selling its oil at prices lower than those fixed by the OPEC. Hence, the oil monopolies of the big capitalist countries, which keep a sharp eye on the oil of the Middle East and the African continent, are ready to supply China with geophysical apparatuses, floating rigs for off-shore prospecting, to send their specialists to assess China’s oil reserves with a view to exploiting them in the future (from the review “Le Courier des pays de l’Est”, No. 197, year 1976).
The Chinese revisionists with Hua Kuo-feng, Teng Hsiao-ping and others at the head, are trying to present their collaboration with the big monopolies and the developed capitalist countries, the loans awarded and the investments made by foreign capitalists as a new and “profitable” road they have discovered for the construction of socialism. But they cannot conceal the fact that even before there were opportunists, who preached this sort of collaboration with the monopolies. And all this, as history has proved, is nothing other than imperialist occupation, carried out not with arms, but with credits and loans. “The capitalist,” Comrade Enver Hoxha points out, “does not give anyone aid without first considering his own economic, political and ideological interests”. Therefore, “the American, West-German, Japanese and other credits and investments in China cannot fail to affect its independence and sovereignty to one degree or another” (E. Hoxha, “Imperialism and the Revolution”, pp, 349-350, Engl. ed.).
The capitalist road which the Chinese revisionists are following in all fields, and especially in the economic field, has caused serious damage to the development of the forces of production in China. With a population which makes up 22 per cent of world population, in 30 years of rule of the Chinese revisionists, China has managed to produce only about 1.4 per cent of world electric power, 5 per cent of pig-iron, 3.6 per cent of steel. For years on end, Chinese agriculture has not been able to meet the needs of the country for bread grain, and only during the period 1970-1978 China had to import 33 million tons of grain, paying over 4 billion dollars for it.
The “Four Modernizations”, which the Chinese revisionists have proclaimed they will realize with the aid of the big capitalist monopolies, are putting the Chinese economy ever more into the grip of economic crises of the capitalist and revisionist world, which is making itself felt in rising unemployment, increasing parasitism of the society, ever more rapid rate of labour export, etc. The reorganizations which are being made in the Chinese economy are intended b give a further impulse to the capitalist relations of production.
The views propagated by the Chinese revisionists and their capitalist practices in all fields and, especially, in the economic field, have been and remain anti-Marxist and reactionary. They show that the Chinese revisionists have never been led by the teachings of Marxism-Leninism, but by “Mao Tsetung thought”, which is in the service of the old and new Chinese bourgeoisie. The Party of Labour of Albania and Comrade Enver Hoxha as well as the genuine Marxist-Leninists of the world, have continuously exposed the anti-Marxist, counter-revolutionary and reactionary essence of this ideology and the practices of the Chinese revisionists based on “Mao Tsetung thought”.
(Sections below are borrowed from a work by the Marxist-Leninist Organization of Britain (MLOB) entitled, “On the Situation in the People’s Republic of China,” although the copied section will not include erroneous conclusions made by that report.)
The Class Character of the Chinese Revolution
In the years immediately prior to 1949, the social system in China was a colonial, semi-colonial and semi-feudal society.
Present-day Chinese society is a colonial, semi-colonial and semi-feudal society. (Mao Tse-tung: “The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party”, 1939; in: “Selected Works”, Vol.2, Peking; 1965; P.315).
The Chinese Revolution was thus one of the working class, the poor and middle peasantry, the urban petty bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie, led by the working class under the leadership of its Marxist-Leninist Party, the Communist Party of China – against foreign imperialism, the Chinese landlord class and the Chinese comprador big bourgeoisie.
In short, it was a bourgeois-democratic revolution.
The character of the Chinese revolution at the present time is not proletarian-socialist but bourgeois-democratic. (Mao Tse-tung; “The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party”, in: “Selected Works”, Vol.2, Peking; 1965; p. 326).
The primary aim of a Marxist-Leninist Party is, however, not the carrying through of the bourgeois-democratic revolution, but the carrying through of the socialist revolution which will establish the political power of the working people led by the working class – the dictatorship of the proletariat.
Excerpt from the work, “Enver Hoxha and the Great Ideological Battle of the Albanian Communists Against Revisionism“:
Against Chinese Revisionism and the “Theory of the Three Worlds”
In the 1970s, when the Chinese Communist Party elaborated the so-called “theory of the three worlds,” Enver Hoxha denounced the anti-Marxist character of that theory, stating that it was a new variant of modern revisionism.
This means that – Enver Hoxha said – the call made by the Chinese is for the “third world” to unite in alliance with the “second world” to fight half of the “first world”?
Such a division of the world confuses the oligarchy with the oppressed and the people, their aspirations and their level of development, which are different and in struggle against that oligarchy.
“In its division of the world into three, the Communist Party of China is advocating class conciliation….
“In the first place, by juggling with the contradictions, the Chinese leaders are endeavoring to justify their stand towards US imperialism, to pave the way for their rapprochement and collaboration with it.
“The Chinese revisionists claim that there is only one contradiction in the world of today, and that this puts the ‘third world,’ the ‘second world’ and half of the ‘first world’ in confrontation with the Soviet Union. Proceeding from this thesis which unites the peoples with a group of imperialists, they advocate that all class contradictions must be set aside and that the only fight must be against Soviet social-imperialism.”9
“The Chinese revisionists continue to hold to their known standpoint of the fight only against Soviet social-imperialism… They relegate US imperialism to second place and stress that the United States of America ‘wants the status quo, that it is in decline’. From this the Chinese revisionists arrive at the conclusion that an alliance with American imperialism against social-imperialism can and should be reached.
“US imperialism is not at all weakened or tamed, as the Chinese leaders claim. On the contrary, it is aggressive, savage and powerful, like Soviet social-imperialism….
The very posing of the question that one imperialism is stronger and the other weaker, one is aggressive and the other tamed, is not Marxist-Leninist. The presentation of the question in this manner is a reflection of a reactionary view which leads the Chinese revisionists into alliance with the United States of America, NATO and the European Common Market, with the King of Spain, the Shah of Iran, Pinochet of Chile and all the fascist dictators.
“We Marxist-Leninists cannot defend the various reactionaries, the clique around Strauss or Schmidt in Germany, the British Conservative or Laborite leaders, simply because they have contradictions with Soviet social-imperialism. Were we to do so and support the preachings of the Chinese to the effect that ‘the capitalist states of Europe should unite in the Common Market’, that ‘United Europe’ should be strengthened so as to be able to face Soviet social-imperialism, that would mean our agreeing to sacrifice the struggle and efforts of the proletariat of these countries to break the chains of enslavement.”10
Enver Hoxha recalled that in the 1960s, the Chinese Communist Party had quoted the well-known Marxist-Leninist theses and principles.
In the document entitled “A Proposal Concerning the General Line of the International Communist Movement,” published by the Central Committee of the CPC in 1963, it stated: “These or those necessary compromises between socialist and imperialist countries do not require that the oppressed peoples and nations also make compromises with imperialism and its stooges.” And further: “Never should anybody, under the pretext of peaceful coexistence, demand that the oppressed peoples and nations renounce the revolutionary struggle”.
Today – stated Enver Hoxha – it is the Chinese leadership that is preaching to the peoples, the revolutionaries, the Marxist-Leninist parties and the proletariat of the whole world the necessity of allying with the imperialist or capitalist countries, of allying with the bourgeoisie and all reactionaries against Soviet social-imperialism.
“Such vacillations and 180° turns have nothing to do with the principled Marxist-Leninist policy. They are characteristic of the pragmatic policy followed by all revisionists.”11
Enver Hoxha denounced the support of the Chinese government to the worst reactionary regimes.
“China defends Mobutu and the clique around him in Zaire. Through its propaganda China is trying to create the impression that it is allegedly defending the people of that country against an invasion of mercenaries engineered by the Soviet Union, but in reality it is defending the reactionary Mobutu regime. The Mobutu clique is an agency in the service of US imperialism. Through its propaganda and ‘pro-Zaire’ stand, China is defending Mobutu’s alliance with US imperialism, with neo-colonialism, and striving to prevent any change in the status quo of that country.”12
“The Chinese ‘third world’ and the Yugoslav ‘non-aligned world’ are almost one and the same thing….
“As Tito’s visit to China and Hua Kuo-feng’s visit to Yugoslavia showed, the Yugoslav revisionists are lavishing praises and cunning flattery on China…. Although they do not renounce their theory of the ‘third world’, the Chinese revisionist leaders, headed by Hua Kuo-feng and Teng Hsiao-ping, have come out in open support of the Titoite theory of the ‘non-aligned world’. They have demonstrated that they want to work closely with the Yugoslav revisionists along the same lines, on two parallel rails, with the anti-Marxist aim of deceiving the peoples of the ‘third world’….
“During Tito’s visit to Peking, the Chinese leaders half admitted that the League of Communists of Yugoslavia was a Marxist-Leninist party and that genuine socialism was being built in Yugoslavia. When Hua Kuo-feng went to Belgrade, they stated this completely and officially.”13
“History shows that every big capitalist country aims to become a great world power, to overtake and surpass the other great powers, and compete with them for world domination….
“In order to become a superpower, China will have to go through two main phases: first, it must seek credits and investments from US imperialism and the other developed capitalist countries, purchase new technology in order to exploit its local wealth, a great part of which will go as dividends for the creditors. Second, it will invest the surplus extracted at the expense of the Chinese people in states of various continents, just as the US imperialists and Soviet social-imperialists are doing today….
“Nikita Khrushchev and the modern revisionists elaborated the ill-famed theory of Khrushchevite ‘peaceful coexistence’, which advocated ‘social peace’, ‘peaceful competition’, ‘the peaceful road’ of the revolution, ‘a world without arms and without wars’. It was intended to weaken the class struggle….
“The Communist Party of China has been following a policy like that of Khrushchev since the time when Mao Tsetung was alive. This policy, too, calls on both sides, the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, the peoples and their rulers, to cease the class struggle, to unite against Soviet social-imperialism only, and forget about American imperialism.”14
All these statements of Enver Hoxha have been confirmed by facts, by the complete degeneration of the Chinese Communist Party into a bourgeois party which has restored capitalism.
Sources for this excerpt:
9 Enver Hoxha, Imperialism and the Revolution, “8 Nentori” Publishing House, Tirana, 1979, English edition, p. 270, 278.
10 Enver Hoxha, ibid., p 282, 291, 296
11 Enver Hoxha, ibid., p. 305.
12 Enver Hoxha, ibid., p. 319.
13 Enver Hoxha, ibid., pp. 325, 332-334.
14 Enver Hoxha, ibid., pp. 368-369, 369-370.
Did you know…
Mao Zedong supported Augusto Pinochet, Richard Nixon, Henry Kissinger, Gerald Ford, the Shah of Iran, Mobutu Sese Seko, Ferdinand Marcos, UNITA, the FNLA, apartheid South Africa in Angola, Emperor Hailie Selassie of Ethiopia, Bandaranaike of Sri Lanka, General Ayub Khan of Pakistan, the Khmer Rouge, the Junta Militar in Argentina and the King of Nepal?
That Mao did not come out openly against the Soviet Union until 1964?
That document were falsified to make it appear he had spoken against the Secret Speech, like Albanian leader Enver Hoxha, in 1956?
The “Three Worlds Theory” by Mao Zedong was used to justify Chinese alliances with right-wing reactionary governments during the 1970s and 1980s. Maoists compare China’s support of racist, reactionary, anti-communist pro-American and fascist regimes to the two-year Non-Aggression Pact signed by Stalin and Hitler, which was notably signed before the Soviet Union bravely won the war against fascism, and allowed them time to build up. The comparison is ludicrous.
Talk about “running dogs of imperialism”!
ON THE QUESTION OF THE DIFFERENTIATION OF THE THREE WORLDS
(February 22, 1974)
Chairman Mao Zedong (hereinafter referred to as Mao): We hope the Third World will unite. The Third World has a large population!
President Kenneth David Kaunda (hereinafter referred to as Kaunda): That’s right.
Mao: Who belongs to the First World?
Kaunda: I think it ought to be the world of exploiters and imperialists.
Mao: And the Second World?
Kaunda: Those who have become revisionists.
Mao: I hold that the U.S. and the Soviet Union belong to the First World. The middle elements, such as Japan, Europe, Australia and Canada, belong to the Second World. We are the Third World.
Kaunda: I agree with your analysis, Mr. Chairman.
Mao: The U.S. and the Soviet Union have a lot of atomic bombs, and they are richer. Europe, Japan, Australia and Canada, of the Second World, do not possess so many atomic bombs and are not so rich as the First World, but richer than the Third World. What do you think of this explanation?
Kaunda: Mr. Chairman, your analysis is very pertinent and correct.
Mao: We can discuss it.
Kaunda: I think we can reach agreement without discussion, because I believe this analysis is already very pertinent.
Mao: The Third World is very populous.
Kaunda: Precisely so.
Mao: All Asian countries, except Japan, belong to the Third World. All of Africa and also Latin America belong to the Third World.
(From the verbatim record)
The Communist Party of China and the 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U.
British & Irish Communist Organisation
With this article we publish the sixth in the ongoing series on the origins of modern revisionism which has focussed on the Twentieth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. The study takes up the issue of the responses of the CPC to the Twentieth Congress of the CPSU and the rise of soviet revisionism. it poses the question: whether the CPC and its leadership had on adequate understanding of the rise of Khrushchevism and whether it undertook the theoretical analysis and exposure of soviet revisionism in a manner analogous to that of Lenin’s defence of Marxism from Kautskyite opportunism in 1914. The stands of the CPC on the questions of Yugoslavia, the Twentieth Congress, Stalin, and the continuation of class struggle under socialism are subjected to close examination. The study concludes that the public statements and actions of the CPC between 1955 and 1960 were not such as to suggest that the CPC understood the implications of the Twentieth Congress and the rise of modern revisionism. On the contrary, the analysis argues, the CPC and Mao mistook the development of Khrushchevite revisionism to be a further development of Marxism-Leninism and assisted Khrushchevism to achieve dominance in the international communist movement in the meetings of the Communist and workers’ parties in 1957 and 1960. Though this study was first published thirty years ago it retains its significance for the communist movement today.
1. The question of Maoism or Mao Tse Tung’s Thought is one of considerable importance for the anti-revisionist movement. The Ninth Congress of the Communist Party of China has made it necessary to investigate this matter and to establish whether the writings of Mao constitute a comprehensive theoretical development of Marxism which gives adequate guidance to the international communist movement in the present period, as the writings of Lenin did after the split of 1914.
This document analyses the relation of Mao, and of the C.P.C. leadership as a whole, to the rise of Khrushchevism in the middle and late fifties. Further developments will be dealt with in a subsequent document.
The rise of Khrushchevite revisionism in the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the unchallenged supremacy which it achieved in the international Communist movement in the middle and late fifties, was a catastrophic defeat for revolutionary working class politics, comparable only to the collapse into opportunism of the European social-democratic movement.
2. In 1914 Lenin upheld the revolutionary Marxist position against the Kautskyite degeneration into opportunism. He made a thorough and concrete Marxist analysis of all the questions at issue, and thereby drew clear and definite lines of demarcation between Marxism and Kautskyism. He furthermore clearly distinguished the Marxist position from the position of revolutionary tendencies which, while being subjectively opposed to Kautskyism, hesitated to make a clear theoretical and organisational break with it – the tendencies of Rosa Luxemburg and Trotsky. Once Kautskyite opportunism emerged as a definite position, and a very powerful one, Lenin analysed and exposed it. He did not allow himself to be inhibited from making a principled exposure of Kautskyism by any considerations of tactics or expediency. Tactical expediency was beneath consideration when it was a question of clarifying the antagonism between opportunism and communism. Gains made by ‘tactical’ manoeuvres are meaningless if they involve strategic losses, and even loss of basic principles.
Because of Lenin’s theoretical exposure of Kautskyism in 1914 the massive working class reaction against opportunist social democracy a few years later was able to express itself in the development of a thorough communist political movement, whereas it would probably have resulted in political confusion and organisational fragmentation if the necessary theoretical and propaganda work done by Lenin had not been done.
3. Following Lenin’s death Stalin maintained that, because of Lenin’s comprehensive defence of the Marxist position against social democratic opportunism, and because of his considerable development of the Marxist position on the questions of proletarian revolution, the proletarian dictatorship and party organisation, the science of Marxism should be called Marxism-Leninism. And it is undeniable that Lenin’s contribution to the development of Marxism was so comprehensive that Marxism-Leninism is an appropriate name.
Stalin himself defended the Leninist position comprehensively against Trotskyism, Bukharinism and other opportunist positions which developed in the Bolshevik Party following Lenin’s death. He gave effective leadership in the first actual construction of a socialist economy. His military and political leadership of the defence of the Soviet Union against the Nazi invasion was outstanding. After the war he guided the development of the East European states in a situation of great complexity, and during the period of his leadership these states maintained a united opposition to world imperialism. Furthermore, he exposed Titoite revisionism, drew sharp dividing lines between it and communism, and led the communist movement into a position of theoretical and practical antagonism towards it.
But despite Stalin’s very great theoretical and practical contribution to the Communist movement the term Stalinism was not adopted to describe it by the CPSU or the international Communist movement. Stalin described himself as a disciple of Lenin who had defended positions established by Lenin, and who had guided the implementation of a programme which had been drafted in its essentials by Lenin. And this was in fact an objective assessment of his activity.
4. If a further development of Marxism in the form of Mao Tse Tung’s Thought exists, it must exist as a comprehensive defence of Marxism against contemporary revisionism, and a comprehensive Marxist analysis of the main features of the present international situation (i.e. of the main features of contemporary capitalism, contemporary socialism, and their inter-relationship.)
5. We quote from Lin Piao’s Report to the 9th Congress of the C.P.C. on the history of the struggle between modern revisionism and the modern anti-revisionist movement:-
‘Chairman Mao has waged a tit-for-tat struggle against modern revisionism with the Soviet revisionist renegade clique as its centre, and has inherited, defended and developed the Marxist-Leninist theory of proletarian revolution and the dictatorship of the proletariat. Chairman Mao has comprehensively summed up the historical experience of the dictatorship of the proletariat both in the positive and negative aspects and, in order to prevent the restoration of capitalism, has put forward the theory of continuing the revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat.’ (Part i)
‘When Khrushchov revisionism was just beginning to emerge, our great leader Chairman Mao foresaw what serious harm modern revisionism would do to the cause of world revolution. Chairman Mao led the whole party in waging resolute struggles in the ideological, theoretical and political spheres, together with the Albanian Party of Labour led by Enver Hoxha and with the other genuine Marxist-Leninists of the whole world, against modern revisionism with Soviet revisionism as its centre. This has enabled the people all over the world to learn gradually in struggle how to distinguish genuine Marxism-Leninism from sham Marxism-Leninism and genuine socialism from sham socialism and brought about the bankruptcy of Khrushchov revisionism. At the same time. Chairman Mao led our Party in resolutely criticising Liu Shao-chi’s revisionist line… All this was done in fulfilment of our Party’s proletarian internationalist duty.’ (Part 7)
6. These statements by Lin Piao are in contradiction with the historical facts of the public response of the C.P.C. to the rise of Khrushchevism.
7. The first major triumph of Khrushchevism in the international communist movement was the ‘reconciliation’with Titoism in 1955.
In 1948 the world communist movement had broken with Titoite revisionism after it had been exposed by the Cominform on the initiative of the Soviet leadership, but it later became clear that there were strong Titoite elements in the leadership of many Parties who were only biding their time. Between 1948 and 1953 exposure of developments in Yugoslavia was maintained in the Cominform newspaper ‘For a Lasting Peace…’. Since this period has since been covered in obscurity we will give some quotes from the Cominform newspaper:
‘…the logic of economic laws is stronger than the ignorant reasoning of the ‘theoreticians’ Tito and Kardelj. Economic laws are inexorably forcing Yugoslavia’s economy into the mainstream of the capitalist system of economy, and subordinating it more and more to the interests of imperialism.’ (July 1, 1949)
‘The state sector of the economy is no longer public property. State capitalism predominates in industry, and private capital is tightening its grip in the towns and especially in the countryside… The restoration of capitalism in Yugoslavia is accompanied by shameless demagogy to the effect that all this, if you please, is building Socialism, and so on.’ (Sept. 1, 1949)
‘In the sphere of economy, the fascist Tito-Rankovich clique took the line of restoring capitalism in town and countryside.’ They base themselves ‘on the urban bourgeoisie which receives from the fascist Tito-Rankovich clique the means of production wrested from the people, and the kulaks in the countryside. In order to facilitate the restoration of capitalism…the Yugoslav fascists undertook the so-called ‘decentralisation’ of the entire national economy, abolished State management of industry, planned production and planned distribution of raw materials and goods. From the pronouncements of Tito, Kidric and other Belgrade chieftains it follows that the basic law of Yugoslav economy is the capitalist law of ‘supply and demand’.’ (April 6th, 1951)
‘At the end of August, the Tito-Rankovich clique…announced ‘new economic laws’ which signified nothing more than the complete transition to open restoration of capitalism, open transfer of Yugoslavia’s national riches to the American and British imperialists.’ (Oct. 12, 1951)
Exposure of Titoism was maintained unabated until Stalin’s death in March 1953, and for a few months after. By the end of 1953 it had become noticeably blurred and softened. By January 1954 an article appeared declaring that the choice before Yugoslavia was between remaining ‘in the grip of the foreign monopolies’, or ‘restoring the ancient bonds with the fraternal peoples of the countries of peoples democracy’. The class nature of the Yugoslav government and ‘economic reform’ was glossed over.
In December 1954 an official statement from Moscow was published, declaring:
‘The strained relations which obtained between Yugoslavia and the U.S.S.R. during the past few years were only to the advantage of the enemies of both countries… Consistently pursuing a peace-loving policy, the Soviet government put forward a proposal to the Yugoslav Government to normalise relations between the two countries.’
In June 1955 a joint declaration of the Russian and Yugoslav Governments was issued after negotiations held in Yugoslavia. The negotiations ‘were conducted in a spirit of friendship and mutual understanding… The negotiations made manifest the sincere desire of the Governments of both countries for the further development of all-round cooperation’. The principles which would guide this cooperation were:
‘mutual respect and non-interference in internal affairs for any reason – whether economic, political or ideological’; and ‘cessation of any and all forms of propaganda and misinformation and also other activities which sow distrust and in one way or another impede the creation of an atmosphere favourable to constructive international cooperation.’
In short, criticism of Titoism was off. The Titoites were to be allowed to continue to develop their ‘workers control’ capitalism without fear of exposure. Titoism was to be allowed to represent itself as a trend in Communism. And the blame for the disruption of relations between the international Communist movement and Yugoslavia was to be attributed to the Stalin leadership:
‘The abnormal, unhealthy relations that arose after 1948, resulting from the provocations of Beria and Abakumov have been ended.’
(Pravda, July 16, 1955. In 1953/56 Beria was shot without trial after Stalin’s death as the source of all ills in the Communist movement while the ground was being prepared for the attack on Stalin.)
8. The C.P.C. gave its full support to these developments:
‘…a shadow had once been cast over Soviet – Yugoslav relations. Now it is clear that the temporary disruption of relations between the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia and other Peoples Democracies ran counter to the fundamental interests of the socialist peoples. It was harmful to the international working class movement… Our regret about that unhappy episode in Soviet-Yugoslav relations is paralleled by our great satisfaction with the restoration and rapid development of Soviet-Yugoslav relations now.’ (People’s China, July 14th 1955)
Stalin ‘gave certain wrong advice on the international communist movement, and, in particular, made a wrong decision on the question of Yugoslavia.’ (‘On the Historical Experience’ etc., April 1956.)
Certain differences connected with the Hungarian events arose between the C.P.C. and the Titoites late in 1956, but in the document ‘More on the Historical Experience of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ (December 1956), while certain criticisms are made, Titoism is still treated as a trend in Communism, and it is reasserted that the Cominform exposure of Titoism was wrong:
‘It is understandable that the Yugoslav comrades bear a particular resentment against Stalin’s mistakes. In the past, they made worthy efforts to stick to socialism under difficult conditions. Their experiments in the democratic management of economic enterprises and other socialist organisations have also attracted attention. The Chinese people welcome the reconciliation between the Soviet Union and other socialist countries on the one hand, and Yugoslavia on the other, as well as the establishment and development of friendly relations between China and Yugoslavia.’ (p.l7)
9. In May 1958 a Resolution adopted by the second Session of the 8th National Congress of the CPC took a more critical position on Titoism, while still disagreeing with Stalin’s handling of the affair:
‘The 8th National Congress of the CPC…considers as basically correct and necessary the criticism made in 1948 by the Information Bureau of the Communist and Workers’ Parties in its resolution ‘Concerning the Situation in the C.P. of Yugoslavia’ in regard to the fact that the Yugoslav C.P. departed from the principles of Marxism-Leninism and took the wrong road of bourgeois nationalism, although there were defects and mistakes in the methods adopted at that time in dealing with this issue. Our Party agreed with and supported the criticism. The second resolution concerning the Yugoslav C.P. adopted by the Information Bureau…in 1949, however, was incorrect and it was later withdrawn by the C.P.s which took part in the Information Bureau meeting. Since 1954, the C.C. of the C.P.S.U., headed by Cde. N.S. Khrushchev, initiated improvement of relations with Yugoslavia and adopted a series of measures to this end. This was entirely necessary and correct. This initiative of the C.P.S.U. had the approval of all socialist countries and the C.P.s of various countries. We also took steps parallel to those of the Soviet Union and established relations between China and Yugoslavia and between the Chinese and Yugoslav Parties.’
The 1948 Cominform Resolution pointed out the opportunist and nationalist policies of the C.P.Y. leadership, and warned that persistence in these policies ‘can only lead to Yugoslavia’s degeneration into an ordinary bourgeois republic, to the loss of its independence and to its transformation into a colony of the imperialist countries.’ It called on the C.P.Y. ‘to recognise their mistakes openly and honestly and to rectify them; to break with nationalism, return to internationalism; and in every way to consolidate the united socialist front against imperialism.’ If the existing C.P.Y. leadership should prove incapable of doing this, the Yugoslav Communists should ‘replace them and… advance a new international leadership of the Party.’
The publication of this Resolution forced the Titoites into the open. Being no longer able to operate their opportunism discreetly under a Communist front, and not being prepared to adopt a genuine Communist position, they developed their revisionist position rapidly and extensively in the year following the Cominform Resolution. To carry this line they relied heavily on Tito’s war-time reputation. There was mass imprisonment of Communists. Decisive bourgeois political and economic measures were taken. A hysterical, and more or less trotskyist, campaign was whipped up. They lined up with the imperialists internationally and began to receive imperialist economic ‘aid’.
The 1949 Resolution stated: ‘Whereas the Meeting…in June 1948 placed on record that the Tito-Rankovich clique had abandoned democracy and socialism for bourgeois nationalism, in the period that has elapsed since that meeting…this clique have definitely passed from bourgeois nationalism to fascism and outright betrayal of the national interests of Yugoslavia.’ They ‘have subordinated their country economically and politically to the American and British imperialists’… ‘Thousands of Yugoslav patriots devoted to Communism have been expelled from the party and incarcerated in prison and concentration camps, while many have been tortured and murdered in jail or nefariously assassinated, like the well-known Yugoslav Communist Arso Jovanovic.’ And ‘the doors of the party have been thrown wide open to bourgeois and kulak elements’.
‘An essential condition for Yugoslavia’s return to the socialist camp is active struggle of the revolutionary elements both inside and outside the Y.C.P. for the resurrection of a revolutionary, genuinely Communist Party of Yugoslavia… The forces of Yugoslavia loyal to Communism, being unable under the present savage fascist terror to come out openly against the Tito-Rankovich clique, have been compelled to resort to the same means of fighting for the cause of Communism as are employed by the Communists in those countries where legal activity is debarred them.’
The 1958 Resolution of the C.P.C. does not state why it considers the 1949 Cominform Resolution to be incorrect, nor does it say what the ‘mistakes in the methods’ adopted in 1948 were. An explanatory article in People’s Daily, June 4, 1958, says that in 1948 ‘the leading group of the Y.C.P. had not yet systematised its revisionist views. Nor did it, after the socialist countries resumed relations with Yugoslavia, state them as systematically as it has done’ (i.e. in its Programme adopted in 1958). ‘When the leading group of the Y.C.P. was drawing up this programme nobody accused them of being modern revisionists’. And even after the adoption of a systematic revisionist programme: ‘It would be incorrect to return to the pre-1954 position’.
In fact, however, the decisive qualitative change in the Yugoslav Party leadership and government took place in 1948, and not in 1958. A comprehensive revisionist position was developed in 1948/9, from which all subsequent developments followed logically.
10. The 1963 document, ‘Is Yugoslavia a Socialist Country?’ says that ‘the Tito clique is a special detachment of U.S. imperialism for sabotaging the world revolution… The Tito clique has invariably played the role of a lackey of U.S. imperialism in the major international events of the past ten years and more.’ It mentions Tito’s sabotage of the Greek revolution in 1949 by closing the Yugoslav border to Greek revolutionaries. It states that capitalism has been restored in agriculture and industry, and in this connection gives examples dating from 1950 onwards.
Regarding the Yugoslav state, it says: ‘While the dictatorship of the proletariat is indeed no more, the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie not only exists, but is a brutal Fascist dictatorship at that.’ Now, the main fascist activity of the Titoites was carried out before the 1954 ‘reconciliation’, and subsequently there was a very gradual evolution of bourgeois democracy. And, in fact, the main example of fascist activity given in this document dates from 1948: ‘The betrayal of the Tito clique met first of all with strong resistance inside the Party. To suppress this resistance, the Tito clique used its power to expel and purge from the Party a great number of Communists loyal to Marxism-Leninism. In the period from 1948 to 1952 alone, more than 200,000 Party members, or half the original membership…were expelled. Taking action against the so-called Cominform elements, it arrested and slaughtered large numbers of Marxist-Leninists and revolutionary cadres and people, the number of Communists and active revolutionaries arrested and imprisoned alone exceeding thirty thousand. At the same time, the Tito clique opened the door wide to counter-revolutionaries, bourgeois elements and careerists…’
This is in substance a reversal to the position of the 1949 Cominform Resolution, but neither that document, nor the earlier C.P.C. view that it was ‘incorrect’, are mentioned. Regarding the 1954 reconciliation, it is stated:
‘In 1954, when Khruschev proposed to improve relations with Yugoslavia, we agreed to treat it as a fraternal socialist country for the purpose of winning it back to the path of socialism, and watching how the Tito clique would develop. We did not entertain very much hope for the Tito clique even then.’
The Twentieth Congress
11. The Khrushchevite revisionist position was comprehensively and publicly stated at the 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U. in February 1956, (with appropriate ‘Greetings’ from Tito). In many Parties there was very strong disagreement with the new policies on the part of the working class membership. But the Khrushchevites won over most of the leadership, in which the intelligentsia were very influential, and despite the widespread, but disorganised and theoretically inadequate, working class opposition, the Parties came under the control of Khrushchevism. But under the influence of the reconciliation with Titoism, the 20th Congress, and the Hungarian events of October 1956, many thousands of the best working class communists left the communist parties.
The sweeping triumph of Khrushchevism in 1956 was made possible by the fact that not a single communist party opposed Khrushchevism or gave a lead to the working class opposition to it. Not a single Party, not a single influential Communist leader, did in 1956 what Lenin did in 1914.
12. The C.P.C. view of the 20th Congress was published in two pamphlets which exercised widespread influence in 1956: ‘On the Historical Experience of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ (April 1956) and ‘More On the Historical Experience…’ etc. (December 1956). The first of these states:
‘The 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U. summed up the fresh experience gained both in international relations and domestic construction. It took a series of momentous decisions on the steadfast implementation of Lenin’s policy in regard to the possibility of peaceful coexistence between countries with different social systems, on the development of Soviet democracy, on the thorough observance of the Party’s principle of collective leadership, on the criticism of shortcomings within the Party, and on the Sixth Five-Year Plan for development of the national economy.
‘The question of combating the cult of the individual occupied an important place in the discussions of the 20th Congress. The Congress very sharply exposed the prevalence of the cult of the individual which, for a long time in Soviet life, had given rise to many errors in work and had led to ill consequences. This courageous self-criticism of its past errors by the C.P.S.U. demonstrated the high level of principle in inner-Party life and the great vitality of Marxism-Leninism’ (p.3).
This view was repeated in the second pamphlet, which was issued in connection with the Hungarian events of October 1956.
13. The line of the 20th Congress was formally approved of, and accepted as the guiding line of the socialist countries, in the Declaration of the Communist Parties of the 12 Socialist countries which was issued after a meeting in Moscow in November 1957. (The delegation of the C.P.C. was led by Mao.) The Declaration states:
‘Contrary to the absurd assertions about a so-called crisis of Communism, the Communist movement is growing and gathering strength. The historic decisions of the Twentieth Congress of the C.P.S.U. are of tremendous importance not only to the C.P.S.U. and the building of Communism in the U.S.S.R. They have opened a new stage in the world communist movement and pushed ahead its further development along Marxist-Leninist lines. The results of the Congresses of the C.P.s of China, France, Italy and other countries in recent times have clearly demonstrated the unity and solidarity of the Party ranks… This meeting…testifies to the international solidarity of the Communist movement.’
Support for the revisionist line of the 20th Congress was re-asserted in the Statement of the 81 Communist Parties (including the C.P.C.) which met in Moscow in November 1960. The Statement asserts:
‘Today the restoration of capitalism has been made socially and economically impossible not only in the Soviet Union, but in the other socialist countries as well…
‘Imperialist, renegade and revisionist hopes of a split within the socialist camp are built on sand and doomed to failure.’ (Revisionism here refers merely to Titoism. Differences arising from the Hungarian events of November 1956 brought about a temporary worsening of relations between Khrushchevite and Titoite revisionism.)
‘The C.P.s have ideologically defeated the revisionists in their ranks who sought to divert them from the Marxist-Leninist path… The C.P.s have unanimously condemned the Yugoslav variety of international opportunism, a variety of modern revisionist ‘theories’ in concentrated form…
‘The Communist and Workers’ Parties declare that the C.P.S.U. has been and remains the universally recognised vanguard of the world Communist movement… The historic decisions of the 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U. are not only of great importance for the CPSU and communist construction in the USSR but have initiated a new stage in the world Communist movement, and have promoted its development on the basis of Marxism-Leninism.’
14. There are differing views in the anti-revisionist movement as to whether the pamphlets ‘On the Historical Experience’ expressed Mao’s position or were issued despite his opposition. There is no evidence for the view that he opposed the line of these pamphlets: the line of wholehearted support for Khrushchevite revisionism. And there is indisputable evidence that he supported Khrushchevite revisionism. In his Opening Address to the 8th Congress of the C.P.C., held six months after the 20th Congress, Mao said:
‘After the October Revolution, Lenin put forward the task of study and again study, before the CPSU. Our Soviet comrades and the Soviet people have acted according to this behest of Lenin. The time has not been long, but the achievements have been extremely glorious. At its 20th Congress held not long ago, the CPSU formulated many correct policies and criticised shortcomings which were found in the Party. It can be confidently asserted that very great developments will follow this in its work.’ (‘People’s China’, Oct. 1, 1956)
At a speech made in Moscow on November 6, 1957, almost two years after the 20th Congress, Mao said:
‘The creative application of Marxism-Leninism by the CPSU in tackling practical tasks has ensured unbroken success in the Soviet peoples’ construction work. The fighting programme put forward by the 20th Congress of the CPSU is a good example. The wise measures taken by the Central Committee of the CPSU on the questions of overcoming the cult of the individual, developing agriculture, reorganising the administration of industry and construction, extending the power of the union republics and local organisations, opposing the anti-Party group, consolidating unity within the party and improving the Party and political party work in the Soviet army and navy, will undoubtedly promote still further the consolidation and development of all undertakings in the Soviet Union.’
‘While in Moscow, on November 17, Chairman Mao met and addressed some three thousand Chinese students and trainees in the Soviet Union… It was an event of great significance, he said, that the Communist and Workers’ parties of 68 countries attended the celebrations… It showed the solidarity of the Communist and Workers’ parties the world over. The socialist camp must have a leader and .that leader is the Soviet Union, Chairman Mao added. The Communist and Workers’ Parties of all countries also must have a leader and the leader is the CPSU. The two facts – the unity of the international communist movement and the launching of the two Soviet artificial satellites – marked a new turning point in the relative strength of the two major camps.’ (‘People’s China’, December 16, 1957)
A communiqué issued after talks between Khrushchev and Mao in Peking in August 1958, refers to ‘the unshakeable unity’ of the CPSU and the CPC.
15. The 1963 document ‘The Origin and Development of the Differences between the Leadership of the CPSU and Ourselves’, states:
‘…the whole series of differences of principle in the international communist movement began more than seven years ago. To be specific, it began with the 20th Congress of the CPSU in 1956’ … ‘The errors of the 20th Congress brought great ideological confusion in the international communist movement and caused it to be deluged with revisionist ideas. Along with the imperialists, the reactionaries and the Tito clique, renegades from communism in many countries attacked Marxism-Leninism and the international Communist movement.’
This is clearly a reversal of the public estimate of the 20th Congress made by the CPC in 1956, and repeated in its support for the Declaration of 1957 and the Statement of 1960. But the document maintains that there has in fact been no change in the CPC estimate:
‘From the very outset we held that a number of views advanced at the 20th Congress concerning the contemporary international struggle and the international communist movement were wrong, were violations of Marxism-Leninism’ … ‘The CPC has always differed in principle in its view of the 20th Congress of the CPSU, and the leading comrades of the CPSU are well aware of this. On many occasions in internal discussions after the 20th Congress…leading comrades of the Central Committee of the CPC solemnly criticised the errors of the CPSU leadership’. Referring to the two 1956 documents ‘On the Historical Experience’ etc., it says that they ‘tactfully but unequivocally criticised the erroneous propositions of the 20th Congress.’
However, ‘for the sake of unity against the enemy and out of consideration for the difficult position the leaders of the CPSU were in, we refrained in those days from open criticism of the errors of the 20th Congress, because the imperialists and reactionaries of all countries were exploiting these errors and carrying on frenzied activities against the Soviet Union, against communism and against the people, and also because the leaders of the CPSU had not yet departed so far from Marxism-Leninism as they did later. We fervently hoped at the time that the leaders of the CPSU would put their errors right. Consequently we always endeavoured to seek out positive aspects and on public occasions gave them whatever support was appropriate and necessary.’
Regarding the 1957 Declaration, which declared ‘the historic decisions of the 20th Congress’ to be ‘of tremendous importance…to the building of Communism in the USSR’, and to ‘have opened a new stage in the world Communist movement’, the document says:
‘The erroneous views of the 20th Congress on many important questions of principle were rejected and corrected by the 1957 meeting of fraternal Parties.’
Explaining why in that case the Declaration had actually hailed the historic importance of the 20th Congress, the document says:
‘…we did not agree with the reference to the 20th Congress… and suggested changes. But out of consideration for the difficult position of the CPSU at the time, we did not insist on the changes’. This concession was made ‘out of consideration for the larger interest’. A concession on the formulation on peaceful transition was made ‘only out of consideration for the repeatedly expressed wish of the leaders of the CPSU that the formulation should show some connection with that of the 20th Congress.’
Again at the 1960 meeting:
‘…we differed on the questions of the 20th Congress…and on the forms of transition from capitalism to socialism, but out of consideration for the needs of the CPSU and certain other fraternal Parties we agreed to the inclusion of the same wording on these two questions as that used in the 1957 Declaration. But we made it plain at the time to the leaders of the CPSU that this would be the last time we accommodated ourselves to such a formulation about the 20th Congress.’
The Stalin Question
16. The development of modern revisionism has always gone hand in hand with criticism of the Stalin leadership of the Communist movement in the period 1936-53. This was the case with Titoism as well as with Khrushchevism. Criticism of Stalin was at the core of the 20th Congress, and was supported and repeated by the CPC. ‘On the Historical Experience of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ stated:
‘The Congress very sharply exposed the prevalence of the cult of the individual which, for a long time in Soviet life, had given rise to many errors in work and had led to ill consequences’, (page 3) ‘The CPC congratulates the CPSU on its great achievements in this historic struggle against the cult of the individual’ (p.l3). It asserts that ‘During the latter part of his life, Stalin took more and more pleasure in this cult of the individual’ and as a result he ‘became conceited and imprudent’, and ‘subjectivism and one-sidedness developed in his thinking.’ He ‘erroneously exaggerated his own role and counterposed his individual authority to the collective leadership’.
CPC criticism of Stalin was further developed in ‘More on the Historical Experience of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ (which was published six months after the release of Khrushchev’s ‘secret speech’ by the US government). It repeats the allegation that Stalin became conceited and subjectivist: ‘A series of victories and eulogies he received in the latter years of his life turned his head. He deviated partly, but grossly, from the dialectical materialist way of thinking and fell into subjectivism. He began to put blind faith in personal wisdom and authority: he would not investigate and study the complicated conditions seriously or listen carefully to the opinions of his comrades and the voice of the masses… He often stubbornly persisted in carrying out… mistaken policies over a long period and was unable to correct his mistakes in time’, (page 14).
Here is a list of the mistakes attributed to Stalin in these documents:
He ‘broadened the scope of the suppression of counter-revolution; he lacked the necessary vigilance on the eve of the anti-fascist war; he failed to pay proper attention to the further development of agriculture and the material welfare of the peasantry; he gave certain wrong advice on the international communist movement, and in particular, made a wrong decision on the question of Yugoslavia.’(‘On the Historical Experience’, p.10).
In ‘certain fields and to a certain degree, he undermined democratic centralism and the leadership of the Party’. (‘More on the Historical Experience’, p. 23) He ‘displayed certain great-nation chauvinist tendencies in relations with brother parties and countries.’ (p. 26)
Furthermore: ‘After the elimination of classes, the class struggle should not continue to be stressed as being intensified, as it was done by Stalin, with the result that the healthy development of socialist democracy was hampered. The CPSU is completely right in firmly correcting Stalin’s mistakes in this respect.’ (p. 21)
Even though it was stated that ‘We should view Stalin from an historical standpoint, make a proper and all-round analysis to see where he was right and where he was wrong’, no such analysis was undertaken by the CPC. Its criticism of Stalin remained merely a list of alleged errors, for the most part vaguely formulated, and entirely without historical substantiation.
17. The 1963 CPC document, ‘On the Question of Stalin’, states that ‘The CPC has invariably insisted on an overall, objective and scientific analysis of Stalin’s merits and demerits by the method of historical materialism and the presentation of history as it actually occurred.’ Unfortunately, though it had said that the Stalin question should be approached in that manner, that was not how it approached it.
The 1963 list of mistakes is: ‘In his way of thinking, Stalin departed from dialectical materialism and fell into metaphysics and subjectivism on certain questions and consequently he was sometimes divorced from the masses. In struggles inside as well as outside the Party, on certain occasions and on certain questions he confused two types of contradictions which are different in nature, contradictions between ourselves and the enemy and contradictions among the people, and also confused the different methods needed in handling them. In the work led by Stalin of suppressing the counter-revolution, many counter-revolutionaries deserving punishment were duly punished, but at the same time there were innocent people who were wrongly convicted: and in 1937 and 1938 there occurred the error of enlarging the scope of the suppression of counter-revolutionaries. In the matter of Party and government organisation, he did not fully apply proletarian centralism and, to some extent, violated it. In handling relations with fraternal Parties and countries, he made some mistakes. He also gave some bad counsel in the international Communist movement.’
A number of items mentioned in 1956 are omitted in 1963. Stalin’s theory of intensifying class struggle is not included in the list of errors. He is not specifically accused of having made a wrong decision on Yugoslavia. He is not accused of having deliberately fostered the personality cult for his own subjectivist gratification. The Khrushchevite struggle against the personality cult is no longer supported: it is in fact represented as a camouflage for counter-revolution.
18. In another CPC document issued in 1963, ‘On the Origin and Development of the Differences’, it is stated that:
‘The criticism of Stalin at the 20th Congress…was wrong both in principle and in method’… ‘In April 1956, less than two months after the 20th Congress, in conversations…with Cde. Mikoyan…, Cde. Mao Tse-tung expressed our views on the question of Stalin. He emphasised that Stalin’s ‘merits outweighed his faults’ and that it was necessary to ‘make a concrete analysis’ and ‘an all-round evaluation’ of Stalin… On October 23, 1956, on receiving the Soviet Ambassador to China, Cde. Mao Tse-tung pointed out, ‘Stalin deserves to be criticised, but we do not agree with the method of criticism, and there are some other matters we do not agree with’… On November 30, 1956, on receiving the Soviet Ambassador to China, Cde. Mao Tse-tung again pointed out that the basic policy and line during the period when Stalin was in power were correct and that methods used against enemies must not be used against one’s comrades… In their many internal discussions with comrades of the CPSU, leading comrades of the C.C. of the CPC also systematically set forth views on the international situation and the strategy of the international communist movement, with direct reference to the errors of the 20th Congress …’ … ‘The fact is that at no time and in no place did the CPC… agree with the complete negation of Stalin’.
19. It is true that in 1956 the CPC expressed public disagreement with the ‘complete’ negation of Stalin. But this referred to Tito and not to Khrushchev. It stated its agreement with the position of the CPSU on Stalin. ‘On the Historical Experience’ states that: ‘the CPSU while affirming the great contributions of Stalin, deemed it necessary to sharply expose the essence of his mistakes’. And despite the release of the ‘secret speech’ in the interim, ‘More on the Historical Experience’ restates CPC support for the Khrushchevite position on Stalin. (And it is a fact that the ‘secret speech’ did not express any complete negation of Stalin. It expressed general agreement with Stalin’s position up to 1934. Thereafter it expressed disagreement on certain essential matters which it was necessary to negate in the interest of the counter-revolution).
Two matters of basic theoretical importance in particular were negated by the 20th Congress. Stalin’s ‘Economic Problems of Socialism in the USSR’, in which the theory of commodity socialism was refuted and in which the economic developments necessary to carry the revolution forward were outlined, was declared to be erroneous. Secondly, Stalin’s theory (or his re-assertion of Lenin’s theory) that the class struggle continues, and even intensifies, throughout the historical period of socialism, was declared to be erroneous.
The CPC supported the negation of ‘Economic Problems’ by implication (i.e. the statement in ‘More On the Historical Experience’ that Stalin should have developed ‘democratic methods of…managing enterprises’ and established closer ‘links between the State organs and the bodies administering various enterprises on the one hand, and the broad masses on the other’; and Mao’s approval in November 1957 of the ‘wise measures taken by the CC of the CPSU’ for ‘developing agriculture’ and ‘reorganising the administration of industry and construction’.
In the concrete circumstances of the time these statements can only have functioned as support for the extension of market relations (usually described as ‘democracy’) in the Soviet and E. European economies. By the time of Mao’s 1957 statement the theory of market socialism was highly developed and considerable market reform had taken place.)
As we have seen, the theory of the intensification of the class struggle was specifically condemned in ‘More On the Historical Experience’.
20. In 1956/57 the CPC publicly supported the Khrushchevite position on Stalin. What was said by CPC leaders in private discussions with representatives of the CPSU was apparently at variance with the public statements of the CPC. In the politics of the class struggle it is public statements that count.
(In Moscow in 1957 Mao stated his support for Khrushchev’s measures against the ‘anti-party’ group of Molotov, Kaganovich, etc., which was a belated movement of some of the survivors of the leadership of the Stalin period to obstruct Khrushchevism.)
21. After the launching of the cultural revolution the main CPC criticism of Stalin continued throughout the period of socialism: ‘In theory, Stalin failed to admit that classes and class struggles exist throughout the historical period under the dictatorship of the proletariat’. (Reference Material for Study of ‘A Great Historic Document’, 1967).
This is the opposite of the 1956 criticism of Stalin in this respect. The 1956 criticism, though incorrect, at least referred to Stalin’s actual position. The theory of the subsidence of the class struggle, attributed to Stalin in 1937, was never put forward by him. He categorically rejected it in his report to the CC of the CPSU in 1937. And in the conflict with Titoism it was again repeated that the class struggle continued in the Soviet Union.
22. It is clear that the public statements and actions of the CPC during the critical years of 1955-60, on the major issues of reconciliation with Titoism, the nature of the 20th Congress, and the Stalin question, cannot be reconciled with Lin Piao’s assertion in his Report to the 9th Congress of the CPC that:
‘When Khrushchev revisionism was just beginning to emerge, our great leader Chairman Mao foresaw what serious harm modern revisionism would do to the cause of world revolution. Chairman Mao led the whole Party in waging resolute struggles in the ideological, theoretical and political spheres, together with the Albanian Party of Labour led by Enver Hoxha and with the other genuine Marxist-Leninists of the whole world, against modern revisionism with Soviet revisionism as its centre.’
Class Struggle Under Socialism
23. Lin Piao asserts:
‘In view of the rampancy of revisionism in the international communist movement and the new trends of class struggle in country, Chairman Mao, in his great work ‘On the Correct Handling of Contradictions among the People’, called the attention of the whole Party to the following fact:’ (i.e. that the class struggle still continued in China). ‘Thus, for the first time in the theory and practice of the international communist movement, it was pointed out explicitly that classes and class struggle still exist after the socialist transformation of the ownership of the means of production has been in the main completed, and that the proletariat must continue the revolution.’
24. It is not the case that the continuation of the class struggle after the socialist transformation of the economy was ‘pointed out explicitly’ for the first time by Mao in 1957. In his report to the CC of the CPSU in March 1937 Stalin said:
‘We must smash and cast aside the rotten theory that with every advance we make the class struggle here must subside, the more successes we achieve the tamer will the class enemy become.
‘This is not only a rotten theory but a dangerous one, for it lulls our people, leads them into a trap, and enables the class enemy to recuperate for the struggle against the Soviet government.
‘On the contrary, the further forward we advance, the greater the successes we achieve, the greater will be the fury of the remnants of the defeated exploiting classes, the more ready will they be to resort to sharper forms of struggle, the more they will seek to harm the Soviet state, and the more will they clutch at the most desperate means of struggle as the last resort of the doomed.
‘It must be borne in mind that the remnants of the defeated classes in the USSR do not stand alone. They have the direct support of our enemies beyond the frontiers of the USSR. It would be a mistake to think that the sphere of the class struggle is limited to the frontiers of the USSR. One end of the class struggle operates within the frontiers of the USSR, but its other end stretches across the frontiers of the bourgeois states surrounding us. The remnants of the defeated classes cannot but be aware of this. And precisely because, they are aware of it, they will continue their desperate sorties.
‘This is what history teaches us. This is what Leninism teaches us.’
This is a perfectly explicit statement of the continuation of the class struggle under socialism. In making this statement Stalin was not developing a new theory. He was merely re-asserting a Bolshevik position which had been established by Lenin.
The criticism of Stalin made by the CPC in 1956 is relevant to this point:
‘After the elimination of classes, the class struggle should not continue to be stressed as being intensified, as it was done by Stalin, with the result that the healthy development of socialist democracy was hampered. The CPSU is completely right in firmly rejecting Stalin’s mistakes in this respect.’ (‘More On the Historical Experience’, p. 21)
If Stalin held that the class struggle continued after the elimination of classes that would indeed have been absurd. But Stalin did not agree that classes had been eliminated in the Soviet Union. It was in the light of the continuing existence of classes, both internationally and in the Soviet Union, that Stalin held the theory of the intensification of the class struggle.
In recent years, especially since the beginning of the Cultural Revolution, the CPC made the contrary criticism of Stalin to that expressed above: i.e. that he failed to see that the class struggle continued in the Soviet Union after the mid-1930s. In fact the theory of the subsidence of the class struggle was specifically rejected by Stalin, as we have seen, in 1937. The CPC, however, supported this theory in the first years of the Khrushchevite period.
25. Lin Piao’s statement, that Mao’s ‘On the Correct Handling of Contradictions’ was produced ‘in view of the rampancy of revisionism in the international communist movement’, is not supported by the document itself, or by the response to the document by the international revisionist movement. There are no signs in the document that Mao was then aware of the revisionist nature of Khrushchevism. The document does not criticise Khrushchevite revisionism. And the document was generally welcomed by the Khrushchevites, and seen as support for their position in 1957.
Nor is it accurate to state that (leaving aside the fact that the theory had already been established by Lenin and Stalin) in the document ‘it was pointed out explicitly that classes, and class struggle still exist after the socialist transformation of the ownership of the means of production has been in the main established’. Mao’s statement on the continuation of the class struggle which is quoted by Lin Piao refers specifically to China, where the old bourgeoisie, and the remnants of the comprador and landlord classes, still existed. Lin Piao’s quote reads:
‘In China, although in the main socialist transformation has been completed with respect to the system of ownership…there are still remnants of the overthrown landlord and comprador classes, there is still a bourgeoisie, and the remoulding of the petit-bourgeoisie has only just started.’ (The clause omitted by Lin Piao reads: ‘and although the large-scale and turbulent class struggles of the previous revolutionary periods have in the main come to an end’.)
‘The question which will win out, socialism or capitalism, is still not really settled.
‘The class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, the class struggle between the different political forces, and the class struggle in the ideological field between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie will continue to be long and tortuous and at times will even become very acute.’
(Mao further remarks that: ‘Ideological struggle is not like other forms of struggle. The only method to be used in this struggle is that of painstaking reasoning and not crude coercion. Today, socialism is in an advantageous position in the ideological struggle’.)
The passage quoted by Lin Piao refers specifically to the conditions existing in China, where the old bourgeois and petit-bourgeois classes, and even remnants of the landlord and compradore classes, still existed, and where collectivisation and socialist industrialisation had only just begun. (In the Soviet Union, when Stalin re-emphasised the theory of the intensification of the class struggle in 1937, the old landlord and capitalist classes no longer existed, in the sense that they did not have control of the means of production, and only the peasants existed as a class, properly speaking, beside the proletariat.)
Mao’s observations do not constitute a statement that the class struggle still continued in the Soviet Union, and they do not contradict the CPC statement made at the same time that classes had been eliminated in the Soviet Union, and that Stalin had erred in putting forward the theory of the intensification of the class struggle.
26. The CPC document, ‘Leninism or Social-Imperialism?’, issued to mark the Lenin centenary in April 1970, says:
‘Far back, when Khrushchev began to reveal his revisionist features, Cde. Mao Tse-tung acutely pointed out:
‘I think there are two ‘swords’: one is Lenin and the other Stalin. The sword of Stalin has now been abandoned by the Russians’. ‘As for the sword of Lenin, has it too now been abandoned to a certain extent by some leaders of the Soviet Union? In my view, it has been abandoned to a considerable extent. Is the October Revolution still valid? Can it still be the example for all countries? Khrushchev’s Report at the 20th Congress of the CPSU says it is possible to gain political power by the Parliamentary road, that is to say, it is no longer necessary for all countries to learn from the October Revolution. Once this gate is opened, Leninism by and large is thrown out.’
The source for this is a speech at the 2nd Plenary Session of the 8th Central Committee of the CPC, November 15, 1956. Inquiries to the Hsinhua News Agency, which published the document in which the quote is given, revealed that the speech is available neither in English nor in Chinese. It is therefore not possible to assess its significance. But a year later in Moscow Mao stated unequivocally that the CPSU was the vanguard of the international communist movement. He would not have done this if, as the above quote suggests, he had realised the significance of the 20th Congress and the real nature of Khrushchevism.)
27. In establishing Stalin’s actual views on the continuation of the class struggle in the period of socialism we are not raising a dead issue with a view to fostering confusion in the anti-revisionist movement. This is a question which has been made an issue of by the CPC on two major occasions since the death of Stalin (though it was not made an issue of before his death). In 1956 the CPC along with the Khrushchevites, alleged that Stalin’s theory of the continuation of the class struggle under socialism was erroneous and was the source of serious mistakes and setbacks in the development of socialism. In the mid-sixties the CPC alleged that Stalin’s failure to recognise that the class struggle continued under socialism was the source of serious mistakes and facilitated the development of Khrushchevite revisionism.
Both of these conflicting criticisms are incorrect. The first is incorrect because the class struggle did actually intensify in the Soviet Union from the late thirties to the fifties. The second is incorrect because Stalin clearly recognised and pointed out the continuation and intensification of the class struggle in this period.
The facts which are stated in this document have been investigated and discussed by the B&ICO since its inception in 1965. The B&ICO has availed of every opportunity since then to discuss them with Maoist groups in Britain and Europe. None of the groups with which we have held discussions had made any independent investigation of the 20th Congress and the response to it in the international communist movement. When the B&ICO stated its view of the matter (essentially as is detailed above) it was never faulted with regard to the facts. The general reaction was a feeling that this period should not be investigated too closely.
It did not seem to the B&ICO five years ago that the anti-revisionist movement could develop if it refused to investigate the development which made it historically necessary (i.e. the rise of Khrushchevite revisionism to dominance in the international communist movement), and if it retreated from the solid ground of historical reality to the swamp of illusion. Five years of practical experience has borne out the correctness of this view. Of all the anti-revisionist groups that were in existence in Ireland and Britain in 1965 the B&ICO is one of the very few which still survives, and it is the only one which has grown stronger both theoretically and organisationally throughout this period. It could not have been otherwise. Communism does not thrive on illusions. All over Europe and America during the past year the organisations based on illusions have been fragmenting and falling into ever great confusion.
What conclusion follows from the historical facts stated in this document? There is only one necessary conclusion. It is that the CPC leadership, including Mao, mistook the development of Khrushchevite revisionism for a further development of Marxism-Leninism, and that it actively assisted Khrushchevism to achieve dominance in the world Communist movement (this dominance being formalised at the meetings of 1957 and 1960).
No necessary conclusion follows from these facts about the subsequent development of relations between the CPC and the CPSU, or about subsequent developments within the CPC. The facts about those questions must also be established by concrete investigation, and will be dealt with in a future document.
Policy Statement No. 3, November 1970. Reprinted January 1972 and January 1973.
It Is Not Right to Receive Nixon in Beijing. We Do Not Support It
Letter to the CC of the CP of China
August 6, 1971
The Central Committee of the Communist Party of China
Comrade Mao Zedong
The leadership of our Party thanks you for the information which comrade Zhou En lai sent us through our ambassador in Beijing in connection with the coming visit of Nixon to China.
Comrade Xhorxhi Robo, who made a special trip to Tirana, gave us an extensive report on the talk which he had with comrade Zhou En lai about the assessments of the Chinese leadership in connection with the coming visit of Nixon to China, about the international situation and the internal situation in the United States of America, and about the questions raised in the meeting of comrade Zhou En lai with Kissinger and the stand of the Chinese side towards them.
Our ambassador informed us that, according to your information, Nixon has been asking for more than two years to go to China and that contacts at various levels have been made for the organization of this visit. The talks with Nixon are described by you as an escalation of the earlier Sino-American talks in Warsaw. The ambassador transmitted to us your assessment that the situation in the USA has altered greatly in recent years, that America is on the eve of a revolutionary outburst and that the Americans are in a difficult situation, that they cannot continue the war, want to ease the tense situation, to withdraw their troops and their military bases from foreign countries, in order to avoid being involved in fighting and creating new hotbeds of war, and to aid their puppets only with money and weapons so that Asians fight Asians. Our ambassador transmitted to us your opinion that Nixon’s visit to China assists and is in line with the people’s diplomacy, that the meetings with the top strata of the USA assist links with the people and encourage changes among the American people, that the talks with Nixon, whether or not successful, will be in favour of China and will not result in any damage for it.
The leadership of our Party studied the important problem you placed before us with the greatest seriousness… We agree that we have to do with an important issue, because, as you define it, Nixon’s visit to Beijing is part of your great strategic plan.
We trust that you will understand the reason for the delay in our reply. This was because your decision came as a surprise to us and was taken without any preliminary consultation between us on this question, so that we would be able to express and thrash out our opinions. This, we think, could have been useful, because preliminary consultations between close friends, determined co-fighters against imperialism and revisionism, are useful and necessary, and especially so, when steps which, in our opinion, have a major international effect and repercussion are taken.
We base our opinions and judgements on this problem of great importance for the present and the future of the struggle against American imperialism on the great Marxist-Leninist theory and strategy… This strategy, which makes the Marxist-Leninist parties invincible, consists of the resolute, principled and uncompromising struggle on two fronts, both against imperialism, headed by American imperialism, and against modern revisionism, headed by Soviet revisionism, of the struggle against all reactionaries and in support of the revolution and the peoples’ national liberation struggle, for the triumph of socialism and communism. This strategy of ours envisages close alliance with the peoples who are struggling, with the revolutionaries of the whole world, in a common front against imperialism and social-imperialism, and never alliance with Soviet social-imperialism allegedly against American imperialism, never alliance with American imperialism allegedly against Soviet social-imperialism. The touchstone which distinguishes us Marxist-Leninists from the various anti-Marxists is the stern, uncompromising class struggle, a blow-for-blow fight to the finish on two fronts simultaneously, against American imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism.
In the course of our great struggle our two parties have employed and will employ various tactics, but these have served and must always serve this strategy… It is clear that this great strategy frightens and terrifies both American imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism, which are making attempts to defeat our strategy, therefore our parties will apply and defend it courageously in any circumstances or situations.
In this favourable revolutionary situation… People’s China, socialist Albania, the peoples and progressive states of the world must have their say and impose their will in order to thwart the diabolical, war-mongering and enslaving plans of the American; Soviet and other imperialist great powers.
It is understandable and has always been clear to us that for the good of the peoples and the revolution the great China of Mao Zedong should talk and establish diplomatic relations with various states of the world, including the United States of America.
Considering the Communist Party of China as a sister party and our closest co-fighter, we have never hidden our views from it. That is why on this major problem which you put before us, we inform you that we consider your decision to receive Nixon in Beijing as incorrect and undesirable, and we do not approve or support it. It is also our opinion that Nixon’s announced visit1 to China will not be understood or approved of by the peoples, the revolutionaries and the communists of different countries.
American imperialism is the number one enemy of the peoples. The United States of America, with President Nixon at the head, is involved in a great conflict today with all the peoples, especially with the Vietnamese people, against whom it has been carrying on a savage and barbarous aggression without precedent in history for 12 years. Today the peoples of the world are waging a life-and-death struggle, with arms and with every other means, to destroy the oppressive and enslaving plans of the greatest enemy of mankind, American imperialism. This supreme interest of the peoples and their struggle ought to .be the basis of the policy of our two parties and governments. They must always have this interest in view in all their activities, especially in regard to relations with the United States of America and with the Soviet revisionists.
It is not hard to understand the desire of Nixon, who, it seems, has long been asking to go to China, because this is in conformity with the two-pronged tactics of American imperialism of brandishing weapons and waving the olive branch, in conformity with its aims to disguise its imperialist features, to deceive the peoples and to soften China.
In the history of the communist movement there are many examples of talks at various levels between opponents. Historical parallels cannot be made, because they took place in different conditions and times and on different problems. However, our great teachers have shown that talks should be held when they are truly indispensable when they serve the cause of the revolution and socialism, that the aggressive aims of the opponent must be kept clearly in mind, and that the situation and the opponent must be assessed correctly.
The talks which you are going to hold with Nixon would have been acceptable to progressive world opinion in certain given conditions, if they were sure to bring benefit to the anti-imperialist struggle, to the revolution in general, and to China in particular.
A condition sine qua non for talks with the Americans at such a high level is that they should be conducted in conditions of equality at least, which means that the USA should first recognise the government of the People’s Republic of China as the only lawful government which represents the Chinese people and lift the obstacles to the admission of China to the UNO, remove the American occupation troops from Taiwan, withdraw the 7th Fleet from Chinese coastal waters, stop its aggression on the borders of China. This would be a great defeat for the American policy. After this, we believe, it would be possible to advance gradually towards the solution of major international problems.
In these conditions steps could be undertaken for talks, with no need, in our opinion, to jump immediately from a very low-level to a top-level meeting of personalities of the two states, China and the United States of America, simply because Nixon has apparently frequently expressed his desire for such a meeting. In our opinion, this meeting cannot be considered a simple escalation of talks, but a complicated escalation which will have consequences, because it is difficult to understand how the talks can be upgraded in this way and the desire of the American president met at a time when the United States has dropped all that huge quantity of bombs on Vietnam and extended the aggression to Cambodia and Laos, when the war is still going on and the American attacks are continuing furiously, one after the other, on the peoples of Indochina, when the People’s Republic of China, Albania, the heroic people of North and South Vietnam and all the revolutionary peoples are standing as solid as granite, fighting and unmasking the aggressive policy of the government of Nixon, this enemy of all the peoples of the world. In our opinion, this meeting in these conditions is wrong both in principle and as a tactic.
It seems to us that it cannot be claimed that the talks with Nixon, whether they succeed or fail, will be equally in favour of China and will not cause any harm. On the contrary, regardless of the results of the talks, the very fact that Nixon, who is known as a rabid anti-communist, as an aggressor and murderer of peoples, as the representative of the blackest of American reaction, is to be received in China has many minuses and will bring many negative consequences to the revolutionary movement and our cause.
There is no way in which Nixon’s visit to China and the talks with him can fail to create harmful illusions about American imperialism and its strategy and policy among the ordinary people, among the nations, among the revolutionaries. It will exert a negative influence on the resistance and struggle of the American people themselves against the policy and aggressive activity of the government of Nixon, who will seize the opportunity to run for president again. Nixon’s visit to China will weaken the upsurge of revolt against American imperialism everywhere in the world. Thus, we think American imperialism will be given the possibility to ensure a period of relative calm which it will try to exploit to consolidate its positions, to gather strength and prepare for new military adventures.
It is not hard to guess what the Italian workers who clashed with the police and demonstrated their repugnance to Nixon’s recent visit to Italy, the Japanese workers who did not allow Eisenhower even to set foot on their territory, and the peoples of Latin America who protested and rose against the Rockefellers and all the other envoys of the Washington government, will think. Only the Yugoslav Titoites and the Rumanian revisionists welcomed President Nixon to their capitals with flowers.
The talks with Nixon place a weapon in the hands of the revisionists to devalue all the struggle and the great polemic in which the Communist ‘Party of China has engaged for exposure of the Soviet renegades as allies and collaborators of American imperialism, enabling them to put the stand of China towards American imperialism on a par with the line of betrayal and collaboration which the Soviet revisionists follow towards it. This gives the Khrushchevite revisionists the opportunity to wave their banner of false anti-imperialism more vigorously and to intensify their demagogy and lies in order to draw the anti-imperialist forces behind them. Already the Soviet revisionists have begun to exploit Nixon’s visit to China to fan up nationalist and chauvinist sentiments under the pretext that a Sino-American alliance aimed against the Soviet Union is under way. By all these means they aim to strengthen the positions of the revisionist cliques in power and weaken the revolutionary positions of China.
Nixon’s visit to China will also encourage the centrist trend and provide its partisans with arguments to prove the “correctness” of their opportunist line. The Italian followers of Togliatti and the Rumanians are declaring openly that now new perspectives are also opened in connection with the re-establishment of unity in the communist movement and that the differences between China and the Soviet Union can be resolved in this way. These are the desires of inveterate revisionists and opportunists who have seized the opportunity to present the differences between the Communist Party of China and the revisionist leadership of the Soviet Union not as profound ideological differences over cardinal issues of principle, as they are in reality, but as disagreements on a simple state level which can be solved by means of direct meetings and talks between top state personalities.
The visit of the American president to China cannot fail to arouse questions, indeed misunderstandings, among ordinary people, among whom doubts may be created that China is changing its stand towards American imperialism and is joining in the game of superpowers.
It is not fortuitous that the capitalist and revisionist world has welcomed Nixon’s initiative to go to China with such enthusiasm. All the propaganda of the imperialists, revisionists, Titoites, Rumanians and others in a joint chorus is praising China and America for this new advance in the relations between them. The Soviet, Titoite, Rumanian and other modern revisionists… say that China has taken a new course on the rails of the policy of unprincipled compromises. They think they will extract important political, ideological and economic benefits from this.
In our opinion, all this cannot fail to cause confusion and disorientation in the ranks of the revolutionary and anti imperialist forces, indeed in the ranks of the Marxist-Leninists, and cannot fail to encourage the spread of the pacifist trend and illusions about the peaceful road.
In our opinion, these are major minuses. To underestimate the situation which Nixon’s visit to Beijing will create would be a great mistake, and we think that these minuses cannot be compensated with certain hypothetical results which may be achieved in the meeting with Nixon who, like the imperialist spawn he is, is cunning.
Allow us also to express some ideas of ours in connection with certain specific problems of the international situation, rather with the aim of making our views more precise on some questions which we think are debatable, while at the same time recognising that your information about the development of international events, and especially about events in the United States of America, may be more complete.
It is true that American imperialism is now in great difficulties at home and abroad. The American people are showing marked signs of being weary of the policy of aggression and international tension pursued by Nixon and his predecessors in the White House. The protests and demonstrations against the war in Vietnam, the revolts of the blacks and students have increased in recent years. The machinery of the American economy is creaking under the heavy burden of the expenditure for the war in Indochina, the armaments race and inflated military budgets. Inflation is not stopping and the army of the unemployed is growing. While the contradictions with the capitalist countries of Europe are increasing, American influence and prestige are steadily declining. The peoples’ struggle against American imperialism is mounting and extending everywhere in the world.
Nevertheless, without .overestimating or underestimating the enemy, the picture of the situation in the United States of America today does not impel us to the conclusion which you have reached, that America is caught up in a great revolutionary storm.
The big popular protests and demonstrations in the United States .of America against the war which is being waged in Vietnam, and the other movements .of the masses are a fact, but they have to do only with opposition to a given activity, to a concrete act of the American government, and only indirectly affect the whole of its aggressive line. They do not transcend this limit. As regards their economic situation, the ideology which inspires them, their way of life, customs, traditions, links, etc., the American people are far from being on the eve of the revolution. A great deal of water will flow under the bridges over the American rivers before that time comes. We are convinced that it will come, but it will take a great deal of work and a great struggle.
In Western Europe the movement of the masses, which has long-standing traditions, is much more extensive and powerful than in the USA. Its overall political trend and class character are evident. Nevertheless, here, too, it cannot be said that the revolutionary storm is blowing up and that the revolution is imminent. To judge otherwise would mean to create harmful illusions and the revolutionary forces could easily fall into extremist errors, especially into ultra-leftist errors.
Likewise, we think that your estimation that, as a result of the defeats they have suffered, the Americans want to ease the tense situation, to withdraw their troops and military bases from foreign territories, to avoid being involved in fighting and creating other hotbeds .of war, is not accurate. This way of judgement creates the impression as if there is a general retreat of American imperialism .on all fronts today, a thing which creates only harmful illusions and a demobilization of the anti-imperialist forces.
American imperialism still has great economic, political and military strength to resist and undertake new aggressions. The war budget and the armaments race and the race to perfect armaments, which are the main indicator of its war-mongering and aggressive policy and aims, have not diminished, but on the contrary, are increasing from year to year at very rapid rates. American imperialism will never give up its strategic aims of war and aggression. Otherwise it would not be imperialism.
If the USA thinks that the puppet governments alone will fight the peoples and America will assist them .only with money and weapons, this means that American imperialism would sign the death warrant for its puppets and itself. There must be no illusion in this direction. Even though it suffers defeat and is obliged to withdraw from some country, this does not mean that American imperialism will not attempt to interfere in and .organize aggressions against other countries.
War, aggression, oppression and enslavement .of the peoples are in the nature .of imperialism. They stem from the very essence .of its exploiting system. It is known that in .order to exist the United States of America needs continuous economic, political and military expansion for the purpose of keeping the peoples in bondage and sucking their blood. Otherwise imperialism dies and the way is opened to revolts, insurrections and revolutions. For this reason, we believe, that the United States of America will never dismantle its military bases in foreign territoriesand will not withdraw its troops deployed abroad of its own accord. This will be achieved only when it is forced to do it by the struggle of the peoples.
In our opinion, the task of the Marxist-Leninists and revolutionaries is to arouse the peoples in struggle against imperialism and revisionism, to build up their confidence intheir own inexhaustible strength, to make them conscious that today they are capable of successfully resistingthe attacks of the imperialists, old and new, and defeating their aggressive plans…
We have supported and will support with all our might the indisputable right of the People’s Republic of China to liberate Taiwan. Taiwan is an inseparable and inalienable part of the People’s Republic of China. Our government will always resolutely oppose the theory of “two Chinas”, of “one China and one Taiwan”, of the “independence” of Taiwan, or of the “indefinibility” of Taiwan’s position. As hitherto, the People’s Republic of Albania will struggle to ensure that People’s China occupiesthe place which belongs to it in the United Nations and that the Chiang Kai shek usurpers are expelled from it.
Our people, likeall the peoples of the world, have admired the aid which the People’s Republic of China has given and is still giving directly to the Vietnamese people and their heroic war against the American aggressors, as well as its aid for their cause in the international arena…
In regard to the war in Vietnam, the stand of our Party is already known to you. We have been and are opposed to the Paris talks. This we have told the Vietnamese comrades openly. Regardless of this, we have supported and support the just struggle of the people of Vietnam unreservedly and we consider their victory decisive for the whole peoples’ anti-imperialist struggle.
The continuation of the American aggression in Vietnam and the whole of Indochina is a major issue which isconcerning all the peoples. The Vietnamese problem can be solved only when the United States of America puts an end to the war in Vietnam, demolishes all its military bases and withdraws its last soldier from that country. We are convincedthat the Vietnamese people will triumph and that victory belongs to the Vietnamese themselves who are fighting arms in hand and shedding their blood. The last word on .any settlement of the Vietnamese problem belongs to the Vietnamese themselves, theirs is the indisputable right to decide their own fate.
The American imperialists and their satellites as well as the Soviet revisionists with their armed forces, which they have deployed on the border with China, have tried to organise a ring of fire around China and to threaten its freedom ,and independence. In this direction the friendship which is developing between the Soviet revisionists and the reactionary Sato government is significant. We have always been and are beside you in the sacred struggle to oppose and destroy these hostile plans of American imperialism, the Soviet revisionists and the various reactionaries.
We fully approve your stand that the views of China about the Soviet Union were not expressed to Kissinger. However, it seems to us that between us there ought to be common opinions about the political actions which the Soviet revisionists might undertake, at least against China and Albania, in the existing circumstances.
The views of the American imperialists about the Soviet Union expressed to you by Kissinger should not have been kept secret from us. Knowing that American imperialism is allied with Soviet social-imperialism and that they are co-ordinating their actions, it seems to us that these views cannot affect only the Far East, but must also affect Europe. If you had informed us of what Kissinger said about the Soviet Union, we would have been more fully armed to discover more thoroughly the American and Soviet moves on the chess-board of Europe.
We support the struggle which the People’s Republic of China is waging against Japanese militarism and its expansionist policy in Asia, especially in the direction of Korea, Taiwan, etc. Together with the active support which China gives the struggle of the Japanese people against the reactionary Sato government and the Japan-American alliance, this correct stand is an important contribution to building up the revolutionary struggle in Japan, which is especially important to restraining the aggressive plans of American imperialism and Japanese militarism.
American imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism have stepped up their efforts to incite Japanese militarism, Indian reaction, and that of several other countries against China and the free countries of Asia. In this context, we appreciate the efforts which People’s China is making to strengthen the united front of the peoples of China, Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos, as well as its efforts to strengthen and extend its contacts and links with the Japanese, Indian, Pakistani and other peoples.
We think that the strikes and demonstrations in America are important, but more important are the awakening of the peoples of India, Japan and all Asia, first, and their hurling themselves into revolution… Likewise, the great importance which Lenin gave to the triumph of the revolution in such big countries as China, India and other countries of the East for the outcome of the world revolution is well known.
British imperialism created splits and antagonisms between the peoples of India and Pakistan and we Marxist-Leninists must oppose the exploiting and aggressive aims of the American imperialists and the Soviet social-imperialists who continue to incite the peoples of these two countries against each other. India and Pakistan are ruled by the reactionary bourgeoisie which is nowhere as powerful as American imperialism. They constitute a weak link.
Our two parties never for a moment forget that the struggle against American imperialism must be waged sternly, not only in Asia, Africa and Latin America, but also in Europe. We have pointed out that People’s China, together with its true Marxist-Leninist friends, ought to play a bigger role in Europe. You know our policy in regard to Europe, a policy which is for revolution, against NATO and the Warsaw Treaty, against the new Soviet-West-German treaty and against the revisionist schemes over European security. We think that the policy of American imperialism in Europe is very complicated. Despite the contradictions the United States has with its partners, its traditional links with Britain and France must always be taken into account.
We agree with you that in order to establish contacts with the peoples the people’s diplomacy must be applied. This is the open and sincere diplomacy which serves socialism, the peoples’ liberation struggle and the extension and growth of the revolutionary upsurge of the masses in the capitalist countries.
However, just as diplomatic relations are not the only way to establish links with the people, contacts with the people are not necessarily established through meetings with the chiefs, either. The influence of socialist countries is exerted, first of all, through the policy which they pursue, the anti-imperialist and anti-revisionist struggle they wage, the consistent, principled stands they maintain towards the vital problems which preoccupy the world, and the solidarity and unreserved support which they give the peoples’ revolutionary and liberation struggle.
Until recently the People’s Republic of China has not had diplomatic relations and direct contacts with many capitalist countries, but this has not hindered it from exerting a great influence on the revolutionary and liberation movement in the world, just as it has not prevented the peoples of different continents from admiring, supporting and defending China…
Vietnam not only does not have diplomatic relations with the United States of America, but for a very long time has been at war with it. Nevertheless, thanks to its just fight, precisely today the sympathy of the peoples of the world and of the American people for the Vietnamese people is greater than ever. The valiant and courageous stand of Vietnam is the factor which, more than any other, ishelping to radicalise the masses of the American people who come out in the streets with the national flag of Vietnam and portraits of Ho Chi Minh.
The most that can be achieved at meetings and talks with the chiefs of capitalist countries is the settlement of certain given problems. However, they can never be turned into a factor the influence of which increases the revolutionary upsurge of the masses, especially when the masses are discontented and have been set in motion against the policy and actions of their rulers. On the contrary, in such cases meetings and talks might create illusions among the people about the imperialist or revisionist chiefs, might create an atmosphere of waiting among the masses and reduce the level of the struggle of the masses.
Moreover, the establishment of diplomatic relations is not always useful to this struggle: For example, we do not accept to re-establish diplomatic relations with the Soviet revisionists because, as is known, they have committed great crimes and launched furious attacks against Marxism-Leninism, the People’s Republic of Albania in particular, and on their own initiative broke off diplomatic relations with us. Our Party has demanded that they make a public self-criticism over everything they have done against Marxism-Leninism and our country. If they do not do this, it would seem as if we assume at least a part of the blame for the breach of relations and we would give the Soviet revisionist chiefs arguments to justify their hostile stands and actions they have taken hitherto against Marxism-Leninism and Albania in the eyes of the Soviet peoples. This would not be in favour of the Soviet peoples and their anti-revisionist struggle, but would assist the Brezhnev clique to consolidate its position.
Or, let us consider the case of our relations with Yugoslavia. Diplomatic and trading relations and some cultural exchanges exist between our two countries. And these relations exist, not only without making contact with the Titoite chiefs, but indeed in principled ideological struggle against them. The polemics with and the ideological struggle against Titoism, which is reflected fully and all-sidedly in the materials and documents which our Party continues to publish, goes on without interruption. However, the fact that now Yugoslavia is threatened by Soviet social-imperialism has not prevented us from declaring that in case of aggression we shall stand beside the peoples of Yugoslavia. In this way we have strengthened our contacts with the peoples of Yugoslavia…
We must utilise the favourable circumstances, created not from the desire of our enemies, but from our correct line and resolute struggle, in our favour and in favour of the revolution, whenever the opportunity presents itself, while always safeguarding the principles and dignity of our socialist states…
For our part we want to assure you that the line and stands of the Party of Labour of Albania will always remain unalterably principled and consistent. We will fight American imperialism and Soviet revisionism uncompromisingly and consistently. Possibly these enemies, individually or together, or by inciting their allies and lackeys, will undertake aggressive adventures against us. We shall fight them unhesitatingly to the finish, to victory…
For the Central Committee of the PLA
1 Made an accomplished fact.
Maoist China Foreign Policy: 1970s and 1980s
The Third World
(a) SOUTHEAST ASIA. Only in China’s traditional “sphere of influence” has the People’s Republic given consistent material support to powers abroad – to North Korea and North Vietnam – and verbal support to movements against governments with which it has friendly diplomatic relations.
In the case of VIETNAM extended recognition and material aid before the Soviet Union, and its artillery was an important factor in the final siege of Dien Bien Phu. However, at the Geneva Peace Talks in 1954, both the Soviet Union and China tried their utmost to persuade the Vietminh to accept partition and not to sweep the French out of Vietnam.  It was not clear whether this flowed from the same fear of extending the war as guided Stalin in his efforts to force the Chinese Communists to make concessions to the Kuomintang in the 1930s. However, the Vietnam problem remained unsolved and broke out in a much more massive form in the 1960s.
As we have seen, China’s role in the second war in Vietnam involved both an expanded flow of aid and a careful stabilization of its role with the United States. The détente with Nixon provoked a reaction in Hanoi, but perhaps the Vietnamese simply wished to keep both its powerful patrons at arm’s length. The new united State took over the claims of its southern half, including the Paracel (Hsisha) and Spratly (Nansha) islands in the South China Sea, both of them also claimed by the People’s Republic. It is said there may be oil reserves beneath the islands, and also that China fears the establishment of a Soviet base in the area which would dominate the far eastern shipping lanes. Whatever the reasons, China stated her position unequivocally: “All islands belonging to China must certainly return to the bosom of the motherland”, and “The archipelagos of the South Sea are our sacred territory and we have a responsibility to defend them.”. 
Perhaps this territorial issue became as sharp as it did because of the estimate of the Soviet threat, which also caused China to revise her attitude towards four countries hitherto seen as US clients – Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines and Singapore.
In 1971, THAILAND, in the view of the People’s Republic, was ruled by the “Thanom clique” of American puppets. However, the first contacts between the two regimes were made in that year. They agreed to end hostile radio propaganda and open up trade. The Thai Prime Minister, Pramoj Kukrit, made a State visit, and signed an agreement with China, Article 8 of which instructed Chinese nationals in Thailand to “abide by the law of the Kingdom of Thailand, respect the customs and habits of the Thai people and live in amity with them”.  that is, not to “make revolution”. Mao, according to Kukrit, denied that any aid was given to insurgents in Thailand or to the clandestine Voice of the Thai People radio; he advised Kukrit not to be troubled by the insurgents of the Thai Communist Party – “since it is small, it should not be dangerous”. No protest was made when the Thai civilian régime was once more overthrown with great bloodshed in the autumn of 1976.
In the PHILIPPINES President Marcos was engaged in a four-year programme of establishing a civilian dictatorship, destroying all opposition, including both supporters of Mao Tse-tung thought (operating for several years as partisans in the Central Luzon province) and a Muslim rebellion in the south. In September 1974, Marcos’ wife, Imelda, was invited to China where she met Mao and was offered Chinese crude oil in a trading agreement. In June the following year, her husband followed her on a State visit. Marcos was overwhelmed by the hospitality, referring to China as the “natural leader of the Third World” (Chou reassured him that no material aid went to the Communist rebels in Luzon), and adopting the slogan of “self-reliance”. Indeed, the President, one of the closest allies of the United States in the east Pacific, despatched a stream of missions to China to learn how to copy certain institutions, and even set up a “Commune” in Leyte, Manila.
MALAYSIA made the same transition. In 1970, the NCNA reported that the “Rahman-Razak clique” was terrified by the guerillas of the Malaysian Communist Party and its power was crumbling.  Nonetheless, diplomatic relations were announced in 1974, and half of the “clique”, Tun Abdul Rahman, duly made the pilgrimage to Peking. He was assured no material aid was being given by the Chinese to the Malaysian guerillas. Later, in April 1975, the Prime Minister was upset by the Chinese Communist party’s greetings to the Malaysian party on the occasion of its forty-fifth foundation anniversary (the actual message was critical of the warring factions of the party, and urged it to stay away from the urban areas). No doubt the Chinese ambassador reassured the Malaysian Prime Minister that the message had no real significance. However, it could be used as a bargaining counter on some future occasion, much as Stalin tried to use the Chinese Communist party in bargaining with Chiang Kai-shek.
SINGAPORE’s opposition has been successively repressed by the régime of Lee Kuan Yew. On his State visit in 1976, Prime Minister Hua Kuo-feng assured him that Singapore’s treatment of rebels would evoke no protest from China (an assurance published in the Singapore press but not in the Chinese).
What were the contradictions the People’s Republic sought to exploit in these four cases? They were not utilizing any “major contradictions” at all, nor were they trying to compete with the United States, which was no longer seen as an enemy. It was a simple territorial security exercise, an exercise that in all but open expression consigned the domestic rebels to insignificance and permitted the regimes concerned to claim that they had Chairman Mao in their support.
INDONESIA remained, at the time of writing, the last country of the area (apart from Singapore) without diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic. The régime under General Suharto originally came to power through a military coup in 1965. Up to that time, Indonesia was governed by President Sukarno, basing himself latterly on the Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) and the army. The PKI had followed a policy of creating a United Front, but without independent territories or armed forces. In practice, this meant sacrificing its radical policies – for example, land reform – to maintaining the alliance with forces that, in some cases, represented those liable to suffer in any land reform. It meant also that the PKI offered entirely uncritical support for Sukarno, calling for a strengthening of his government (his so-called “Guided Democracy”). Sukarno, on the other hand, needed a civilian counterweight to the powerful army, which the PKI provided. Sukarno therefore protected the party from the army and advanced its position in the government (although never in the decisive agencies governing the defence forces). Under Sukarno’s patronage the party became the largest Communist party outside the Eastern Bloc, with a claimed membership of three million, and between eight and ten million in party front organizations. But it was captive to Sukarno’s purposes, for it could raise radical demands for domestic change only at the cost of its position in the Indonesian government.
China gave strong support both to the PKI and to Sukarno, even though the PKI’s policy was one of united front without armed struggle. It was impossible to have the one with the other; had the PKI tried to create its own military forces, the army would have seized power.
In September 1965, a section of the palace guard launched a coup against the main leadership of the army. The army counter-attacked, alleging that the conspiracy was hatched by the PKI and China; it was further alleged that China had flown arms in to the leading air force base for use in the coup. The military rapidly won control, and there followed one of the most appalling massacres in modern history. More than half a million people were slaughtered by the army and its supporters; 200,000 PKI members lost their lives, including forty-five of the fifty central committee members. Many hundreds of thousands of others were gaoled.
China did not comment publicly at the time of the coup, nor has any balance sheet of lessons drawn from the catastrophe appeared since. For the ordinary Chinese newspaper reader, revolutionary Indonesia simply disappeared, in due course surfacing as fascist Indonesia. The People’s Republic continued its aid programme to the new military régime and did not break off diplomatic relations until an attack was launched on the Chinese embassy in April 1966, The Russians behaved in a similar fashion. Pravda published no protest at the destruction of the PKI, and the 700 Soviet advisers in Indonesia continued at work. But the political role of the Russians in Indonesia is not as important as that of the Chinese, who form a large minority in control of much business and commercial activity. The attack on the PKI and China could therefore draw on anti-capitalist sentiments.
In these circumstances, the restoration of diplomatic relations is more of a problem than elsewhere in south-east Asia. However, it will almost certainly come. Then China’s criticism of Indonesia’s repression of the Freitlin struggle for national independence in East Timor will disappear in time for the arrival of General Suharto (or his successor) in Peking. The fate of the survivors of the PKI, the insurgents lying low in Central Java, is of less importance to Peking.
(b) SOUTH ASIA. Asia was China’s main area of operations in the 1950s. INDIA was an important ally, and given that, after China, it was the most populated country in the world, what the Indians called “Hindi-Chinni bhai bhai” included over half the population of the “third world”. However, the two countries had a common border and were also competitors. At various times India attempted to dabble in China’s “sphere of influence” in Tibet. Yet in terms of its domestic régime, India seemed to be a natural candidate for the title of “progressive State”; it was republican, secular, and operated a planned economy within “a socialistic framework”. It was also “non-aligned” between the two major blocs, a position it reached in advance of China.
Such details, however, were irrelevant compared to the imperatives of the defence of Chinese territory. After the much publicized clash of 1962, India was excluded from the grand design. Mao put it thus: “We have an anti-imperialist task. We have the task of supporting national liberation movements, that is, we must support the broad masses of the people in Asia, Africa and Latin America, including workers, peasants, the revolutionary national bourgeoisie, and the revolutionary intellectuals … But they do not include the reactionary national bourgeoisie like Nehru.”  Why did the commitment exclude Nehru, but not Emperor Hailie Selassie of Ethiopia or General Ayub Khan of Pakistan? Supporters of China later argued that India’s close relationship to the Soviet Union was the reason. However, at the time when strains began, 1959-60, it was China who was the close ally of the Soviet Union and the recipient of Russian aid. Since Mao did not discover that the Soviet Union was “fascist” until 1964, Nehru was perhaps to be forgiven for not having discovered earlier. What, for Mao, determined the character of India’s domestic order was not the Soviet relationship, but the actions of Indian troops in Ladakh.
The break with India led to the rapid promotion in Peking’s eyes of PAKISTAN, up to that time considered the closest ally of the United States in south Asia. An equally important factor, however, was the attempt by the Soviet Union to establish its influence in Pakistan (Russia assumed the role of mediator in the Indo-Pakistan war of 1965, and instigated the agreement signed between the two countries in Tashkent). China’s promotion of General Ayub Khan from “American puppet” to “anti-imperialist force” was not an idle commitment, since, as earlier mentioned, Chinese intervention in the 1965 war on Pakistan’s side divided the Indian forces. China’s role placed its sympathizers in India in an extraordinarily difficult position, only exceeded by that of its supporters in Pakistan. In the case of Maulana Bashani, one of the leaders of the Pakistani Left, he was induced – after a visit to Peking – to give “critical support” to the quasi-military dictatorship, and to its role in exploiting the Maulana’s own province, East Pakistan. It was also China’s interests which led the East Pakistan Left to oppose the demand for Bengali independence, so giving the movement up to Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s Awami League and to Indian influence.
Between 1968 and 1971, both wings of Pakistan – East and West – were in revolt, culminating in the collapse of Ayub Khan’s power and the demand from the Bengalis of the East for the “right of national self-determination”. However, China’s geopolitical considerations took priority in Peking over the national liberation of Bengalis. In June 1970 the Soviet Union received a State visit from Ayub Khan’s successor, General Yahya Khan, who accepted a Russian offer of aid in constructing a heavy industrial sector. China could scarcely risk losing its most consistent ally in south Asia to “social imperialism” for the sake of a handful of Bengalis. Accordingly, the Bengali revolt became a “CIA-Soviet Union-Indian” plot to destroy the Pakistan nation. As the Pakistan army moved to crush the revolt in the East, China extended material and moral support to the Pakistan régime.  Maulana Bashani might appeal directly to Mao, but Chou En-lai congratulated General Yahya Khan on “safeguarding national independence and State sovereignty”.  The Chinese people were given the General’s speech justifying the repression, and the General in turn quoted China in explaining his action to the Pakistanis.
The repression produced an enormous flight of refugees to India. The Indian régime could not afford to neglect the opportunity. Only a few days after the repression began, the Indian high command began to formulate plans to achieve the central aim of Indian foreign policy since 1947, the destruction of the threat of Pakistan. Thus, Chinese policy both directly and through its influence over the Pakistani Left was instrumental in achieving the exact result it was supposed to be aimed to prevent; it opened the door to Indian intervention, and made it possible for the Indian government to establish a dominant position in the independent Bengali State of Mujibur Rahman. To compound the paradoxes, in August 1972, the Chinese delegate at the United Nations vetoed the entry of the new State of Bangladesh; and in May 1975, Pakistan reaffirmed its fundamental loyalty to CENTO at the Ankara meeting of the alliance.
Some supporters of China have attempted to protect Peking’s honour by suggesting that officials in the Chinese foreign ministry were privately appalled by events in East Pakistan. No doubt in the high days of the US war in Vietnam, the State Department was full of officials grieving over the behaviour of American troops in Vietnam, Such private qualms may be face-saving, but they do not relieve the regimes concerned of their responsibility. Others have found retrospective justification in the corruption of the Bangladesh régime and the famine of 1974. Yet China was indirectly instrumental in permitting that régime to come to power; no alternative was offered by the Bangladesh Left. Forcing East Pakistan back into the authoritarian rule of Islamabad would in no way have prevented the famine. But none of this was acknowledged in Peking or in the Chinese press; no lessons were drawn, no explanations offered either to the Chinese people or China’s supporters abroad.
For SRI LANKA, China has been an important ally since 1952. By 1975, China took eleven and a half per cent of the country’s exports and supplied twelve and a half per cent of its imports. In 1972, China’s financial aid covered three-quarters of Sri Lanka’s budget deficit.
1971, however, was a difficult year. Mrs Bandaranaike’s government, having done very little in its short time in office, provoked a Left-wing mass revolt in the rural areas.  Possibly three to four thousand young people were killed, and many thousands imprisoned. China – along with the United States, the Soviet Union, Britain, India and Yugoslavia – rallied to give moral and material help to Mrs Bandaranaike’s government. The Sri Lanka press published an official letter from Chou En-lai, released by the Sri Lanka government (but not published in China), which offered a further long-term interest-free loan of £10.7 million (extended twice later in the year) and congratulated the government on defeating the insurgents – Chou was “glad to see that the chaotic situation created by a handful of persons who style themselves as Guevarists … has been brought under control”. On her State visit to China two months later, Mrs Bandaranaike was able to thank her hosts publicly for their support; in return, Chou thanked Sri Lanka for supporting China’s application to enter the United Nations.
(c) MIDDLE EAST. China appears to have given some aid to the Palestinian Liberation Organization until King Hussein of Jordan endeavoured to destroy the movement; then China assisted the government of Syria (the main force seeking to destroy the PLO in Lebanon in 1975-6). But although Chinese propaganda made much of this aid at the time, it was the least important component in China’s foreign policy in the area.
What raised the most difficulties for the supporters of China was the relationship between the People’s Republic and the Imperial State of IRAN. As a long-standing ally of the United States and a pillar of CENTO, the régime of the Shah was at once aligned with a superpower, internally repressive and “feudal”. Yet in April 1971 when the indefatigable Chou En-lai was busy congratulating General Yahya Khan of Pakistan and Mrs Bandaranaike of Sri Lanka, he also found time to receive Princess Ashraf Pahlevi, sister to the Shah, on an official visit to Peking. The Princess was received by Chairman Mao, and even accompanied him on the rostrum during the May 1st celebrations, no doubt to the delight of the parading masses. Simultaneously, the Shah’s notorious secret police, SAVAK, were launching a widespread attack on all opposition in which thirteen urban guerillas were summarily executed. Chou praised the Shah’s “struggle against foreign aggression and for national construction”, a phrase that possibly referred to Iran’s massive military expenditure. In August, diplomatic representatives were exchanged, and the Chinese people informed that it had congratulated the Shah on his sterling work for his people.  The following year, the Shah himself and Empress Farah Diba “were accorded a warm welcome by tens of thousands of people lining the streets” of Peking. In return, Chinese representatives graced the Shah’s grotesque extravaganza, the Persepolis celebrations of 2,500 years of Persian “feudalism”.
The Shah had joined the “progressive forces”. The clandestine Iranian Left might denounce the corruption and repressive character of his régime, but this was an entirely marginal matter so far as China was concerned. The Left might deplore the continued arms drive of Iran and the use of Iran’s oil revenue to finance Western arms manufacturers, but the People’s Republic decreed otherwise: “As an independent sovereign State, Iran has the right and every reason to ensure her self-defence by strengthening national defence. As to the kinds and number of weapons it intends to buy and from where it buys them, it is the internal affair of Iran and other countries have no right to intervene.” Whence came this “right”? From Iran’s 1,562 mile border with the Soviet Union.
The creation of national States on the African continent coincided with the development of an independent Chinese foreign policy. As a result, it was possible for China to be more effective in contest with other world powers which had not had time to consolidate positions. It is said that African guerillas were trained in China in the early l950s. But by the late 1950s, it seems, diplomatic representatives of China were engaged in training militia and youth organizations in some African countries that received financial aid. Those financed included Ethiopia, the Batutsi government in the former Ruanda-Burundi, Algeria, Egypt, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Somalia and Congo. However, a contradiction soon emerged; training youth organizations could only take place if there was no hint of mobilizing an opposition to the established régime (the United States was prepared to manufacture such hints to secure influence among independent African States). Revolutionary propaganda opened the door to United States, and later Soviet, intervention. Thus the military government of Congo (B) was induced to disband the youth movement. In Mali, a military coup against President Modibo Keita ended the Chinese link. Chinese diplomats were expelled from Burundi, Dahomey and Central African Republic.
In 1964, a new diplomatic offensive took place, culminating in an African tour by Chou En-lai. Although a number of African States were irritated by Chou’s declaration, “Africa is ripe for revolution”, the visit had solid achievements. Before his visit, seven countries recognized the People’s Republic, and fifteen Taiwan; afterwards, fourteen recognized China, sixteen Taiwan and four remained neutral.
These efforts were slightly nullified by the neglect of external relations during the Cultural Revolution. However, immediately afterwards Peking began a new drive to win diplomatic recognition as the stepping stone to membership of the United Nations. Financial aid was expanded, but this time without any hint of organizing subversive youth groups. Aid went overwhelmingly to established governments, although some assistance is said to have been given to the liberation struggles in Mozambique and Guinea-Bissau (and possibly some, but very little, to the Zimbabwe guerillas in Rhodesia). The largest share went to Zambia for the building of the Tanzam railway. President Kaunda has divulged that, at one stage, Chinese representatives did distribute propaganda in Zambia, but withdrew it and apologized when he complained. China’s aid tends to contradict its stress on “self-reliance”, and possibly raises problems at home. During the negotiations for the Tanzam railway, it was rumoured that there was opposition to the project in Peking because it would considerably delay China’s own railway programme, and would do so for a country, Zambia, where the per capita income was double that of China.
To Hailie Selassie of ETHIOPIA, China was a generous patron from the mid-1950s, despite the presence of US military bases in the country. The Emperor made numerous State visits to Peking. Chou, in October 1973, toasted the aged scoundrel: “We admire the Emperor of Ethiopia, Hailie Selassie … I raise my glass to commemorate his struggle against colonialism, racialism, and slavery.” Chinese loyalty was in no way deflected by the protracted war of national liberation forces in the province of Eritrea, a revolt the heroic Emperor endeavoured to root out. Nor was China more than embarrassed by the student movement in Addis Ababa which precipitated a general strike and the collapse of the imperial régime in 1974. The Chinese people were told nothing of these events. Peking rapidly recognized the new military rulers, extended financial aid to the Emperor’s successors and refrained from comment on the escalation of the war against the Eritreans and the savage persecution of the Ethiopian trade unions and Left.
Nineteen seventy-one was a year of embarrassment for the People’s Republic not only in Asia. In July, a section of the Sudanese army, with the support of the pro-Moscow Communist party, carried out a short-lived coup against the régime of President Nimeiri. The President reacted in force with a severe repression of the Communists. In Peking, the China-Sudan Friendship Society organized demonstrations in support of Nimeiri.  Officially, the People’s Republic congratulated the President on his victory and offered him a grant equivalent to US $45 million. Meanwhile, the Soviet Union and North Vietnam made strong protests at the slaughter. China saw the events in the Sudan not as they affected the Sudanese, but only as they affected its competition with the Soviet Union (an attitude shared in Moscow and Washington).
However, it was in the south that Chinese foreign policy received its greatest humiliation in Africa. The disunity of the liberation forces in the former Portuguese possession of ANGOLA provided an opportunity for both Soviet and South African influence there, which in its turn divided the loyalties of the African States. Zambia, already immersed in a détente with South Africa, called for no more than an end to foreign intervention. Nyerere of Tanzania, the recipient of much Chinese aid, and Machel of the recently victorious Mozambique, led the majority of the Organization of African Unity in support of the MPLA, Russian and Cuban assistance or not, and against the South African-backed UNITA and the Zaïre-backed FNLA (the two subsequently allied).
Zaïre, a corrupt and brutal right-wing régime under General Mobutu, financed the FNLA, a force based upon the old tribal kingdom of the Bakongo. The leader of the FNLA was Holden Roberto, the ex-king of the Bakongo, and a successful businessman in Kinshasa, the Zaire capital. Like his father-in-law, General Mobutu, Roberto is reputedly strongly anti-Communist. By contrast, the MPLA had a much less defined tribal base, had a major following among the urban working class of Luanda (the Angolan capital) and was explicitly opposed to private capitalism and foreign domination of an independent Angola. However, General Mobutu has received financial aid from China for a number of years (as well as military assistance from the United States). In December 1974 the General made the customary State visit to Peking. Both the MPLA and the FNLA sent representatives to Peking to secure aid.  However, China, presumably on the grounds that the Russians were assisting the MPLA, chose to support the weaker of the two, the FNLA. Roberto himself claimed in May 1974 that 200 Chinese instructors were in Zaire to train his troops. As a result, China found itself supporting a front, the FNLA-UNITA, which was not only defeated, but was supported by South Africa and the United States, a factor sufficient to shift the loyalty of virtually all the African States to the MPLA. It was an ignominious disaster.
China will live down the exposure, and the tides of rhetoric wilt once more cover the credibility gap. Yet the case illustrates the relative weakness of China’s foreign policy as an instrument of change. China lacks the material power to be as effective as its rivals. As a result, it has too often been compelled to fall in with purposes it has previously condemned, simply in order to retain influence. For example, China condemned all talk of détente between the independent African States and South Africa, but by 1975 it was obliged to accept this if it wished to retain its influence in Zambia.  Again, despite having fostered a long relationship with Ethiopia, China was displaced by the Soviet Union in 1977 with the onset of war with Somalia; China could not match Russia’s arms supplies.
Latin America, most advanced of the three backward continents and most penetrated by foreign capital, was the least suitable for Chinese preoccupations. For no amount of argument could have persuaded the Left there that the threat of the Soviet Union was greater than that of the United States. In any case, there was a home-grown revolution, that of Cuba (in 1959) which more clearly epitomized the conditions of the continent for the Left (and without the obfuscation of Peking’s jargon). Fidel Castro in the 1950s opposed forming a “united front” with the “national bourgeoisie” of Cuba in order to create “new democracy”. Guerilla struggle, its class basis unspecified at the time, led straight to “socialism”. Peking might ritually intone in 1960 that “the tide of national and democratic revolution in Latin America is surging to unprecedented heights”, but Fidelismo blocked any real influence. For a time it looked as though the two might collaborate, but the importance of Russian aid for Cuban survival (despite the Soviet defeat in the 1962 missile crisis) finally proved decisive.
China turned to “material incentives” for established governments. Peru, governed by a military régime but with the largest Chinese minority in the continent (estimated at 60,000) became the main recipient of Chinese aid. A Sino-Peruvian trade agreement was signed in June 1971, shortly after the signing of a Soviet-Peruvian treaty.
In the case of CHILE, China warmly supported the Allende government of Popular Unity, despite the fact that it was not the result of a revolutionary seizure of power and despite the warning of the Indonesian disaster. One week after the Sovet Union offered Allende a loan of US $150 million, China capped it with an interest-free loan of US $65 million. By 1972, China had become the fourth largest buyer of Chile’s copper. The Chinese press described Chile as a revolution, without qualification or warning. The coup by General Pinochet might have been an embarrassment, except that coups were by now a frequent occurrence among China’s associates abroad. The embassy of the People’s Republic was one of the three foreign legations in Santiago (the others were the British and the French) that refused to offer refuge to the hunted supporters of the government, and China was the first country in the Eastern Bloc to recognize the new régime. No official statement was published in China on the question of how another progressive force had slipped through the interstices of history, although in the United Nations delegate Huang Hua expressed regret at the murder of Allende and the attack on the Cuban embassy as “in violation of international practice”. Subsequently, China extended the financial aid made to Allende to Pinochet. The régime was grateful; under-secretary of foreign affairs, Cmdr. Claudio Collados specifically praised the People’s Republic as one of the few countries which had not tried to isolate Chile.  The opportunity to scoop the Soviet Union by securing privileged access to the new régime proved a temptation too great to be resisted.
Hypocrisy is the stock-in-trade in relations between States, each flattering the other while arming. What is surprising is not that China conforms to this rule but that so many people should be able to disregard the evidence and believe that China’s activities abroad reflect the cause of world revolution. The consistency of Chinese policy is impressive; its principles have remained constant throughout the period. What has changed, unfortunately for Peking, is the world. That is not China’s fault, but it is the source of the “mistakes”. Policy is tested not by its rhetoric in times of stability. It is in crisis that the test comes. Unswervingly, each crisis finds the People’s Republic “failing” by the criteria laid out in the opening section of this chapter.
The current changes in the world signify the onset of a long-drawn-out crisis, and herald a new opportunity for revolution. If China were devoted to world revolution in anything other than a rhetorical sense, now would be the time for a radical change of gear and the creation of an International. Foreign policy would be subordinated to building mass movements dedicated to the overthrow of the States with which the People’s Republic has relations. Yet the Chinese State has consistently sacrificed that purpose to the maintenance of its competition with the Soviet Union. Its material support to national liberation struggles has been too marginal to affect the domination of the major powers. Its border conflicts, the defence of its “sacred territory”, has been the primary concern of its foreign policy: which is why the Soviet Union, still economically far weaker than the advanced capitalist bloc, is offered as the main threat. As a result, China is more often used by the other powers of the world than it is able to use them; it is China which is dragooned behind the United States or Holden Roberto.
Many of China’s supporters abroad do not examine the record closely. They claim that the People’s Republic has policies superior to those of other States, not that it practises something different, “proletarian internationalism”. Then the fact that the terms of Chinese aid are better than those of its rivals, and its rhetoric borrows on a tradition of using the word “revolution”, becomes the substance of the case. The evidence proves otherwise.
15. Edgar Snow, Red Star over China, London, 1937, p.95.
16. For details, cf. Gittings, in Horowitz, op. cit., p.182 passim.
17. Mao, 8 December 1956, in Miscellany I, p.37.
18. June 1964, ibid. II, p.364.
19. NCNA Peking, 19 May 1970, SCMP 4665, 27 May 1970; cf. also NCNA, 20 May 1970, SCMP 4666, 28 May 1970.
20. May 1958, in Miscellany I, p.115.
21. Reported, The Times, London, 24 October 1975.
22. Neue Zeit, No.13, Moscow, 1961, p.23, cited T. Cliff, China-Russia: the monolith cracks, International Socialism 14, Autumn 1965, p.6.
23. The origins and the development of the differences between the leadership of the CPSU and ourselves, JMJP, 6 September 1963.
24. May 1964, in Miscellany II, p.349, cited Joint Editorial, JMJP Hung-chi, 1 January 1970, and PR 17, 1970.
25. For a lasting peace,for a people’s democracy (journal of the Cominform), 1 September 1949, cited by Ian H. Birchall, Workers against the Monolith, London, 1974, p.49.
26. Vice-minister of Foreign Trade, Chou Hua-min, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, Nairobi, 11 May 1976.
27. A structure outlined by Teng Hsiao-p’ing to the United Nations, reported PR 15, 12 April 1974.
28. NCNA Peking, 7 July 1974.
29. JMJP, 27 February 1973, reported by Peking correspondent, The Times, London, 1 March 1973.
30. JMJP, 18 September 1971; see also, Down with revived Japanese Imperialism, JMJP, 3 September 1970.
31. PR 39, 1971.
32. Interview, The Times, London, 27 October 1972.
33. NCNA Peking, 22 December 1973, SCMP 5527, 4 January 1974.
34. The Vision of Judgement, in Byron: Poetry and Prose, Oxford, 1940, p.111.
35. NCNA Peking, 21, 22 and 23 November 1975, SWB 3, FE/5066/i, 22 November 1975.
36. Chou En-lai: “he had wrongly persuaded the Vietnamese to make concessions at Geneva in 1954 to get a settlement: he was wiser now than then” – Interview, The Times, London, 13 July 1972.
37. Kuang-ming JP, 24 November 1974.
38. PR 27, 4 July 1975.
39. NCNA Peking, 23 April 1970, SCMP 4647, 1 May 1970; see also ibid., 14 May 1975, SCMP 4662, 22 May 1975.
40. Tenth Plenum (8th Central Committee), 24 September 1962, in Mao Unrehearsed, p.189.
41. See 23 March 1971 message of support, Chou En-lai to General Yahya Khan; NCNA 2 April 1971, and JMJP, 11 May 1971 – “The relevant measures taken by President Yahya Khan in connection with the present situation in Pakistan are the internal affairs of Pakistan in which no country should, or had the right to, interfere.”
42. Bashani’s telegram to Mao: “The ideology of socialism is to fight oppression … and if Mao refused to protect against the atrocities of the military junta, the world may think you are not the friend of the oppressed.”
43. For details, cf. my: Ceylon 1971, International Socialism 48, June-July 1971.
44. The NCNA statement reads: “Today, under the direction of his Imperial Majesty, the Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlevi, the Government and the Iranian people work without cease to safeguard the sovereignty of the State, to protect national resources, to advance the programme of national culture and to educate the country, and has registered success in these aims. The Chinese Government and people congratulate them sincerely and applaud their efforts to achieve new victories in their march forward.”
45. The People’s Daily reported that the coup had been undertaken by “some Sudanese officers” – JMJP, 27 July 1971.
46. MPLA’s Augustinho Neto visited Peking in 1971; both organizations sent delegations there in June 1975 – cf. NCNA Peking, in SCMP 75-24, June 9-13 1975, and Le Monde, 6 June 1975.
47. Vice-premier Li Hsien-nien, at a banquet in honour of the secretary of the Zambian UNIP, 16 September 1975, in PR 38, 19 September 1975.
48. Press statement, Santiago, 26 January 1975, reported The Times, London, 27 January 1975.