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1. The Communist Party

The force at the core leading our cause forward is the Chinese Communist Party.

The theoretical basis guiding our thinking is Marxism-Leninism.

Opening address at the First Session of the First National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China (September 15, 1954).

If there is to be revolution, there must be a revolutionary party. Without a revolutionary party, without a party built on the Marxist-Leninist revolutionary theory and in the Marxist-Leninist revolutionary style, it is impossible to lead the working class and the broad masses of the people in defeating imperialism and its running dogs.

“Revolutionary Forces of the World Unite, Fight Against Imperialist Aggression!” (November 1948), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 284.

Without the efforts of the Chinese Communist Party, without the Chinese Communists as the mainstay of the Chinese people, China can never achieve independence and liberation, or industrialization and the modernization of her agriculture.

“On Coalition Government” (April 24, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. III, p. 318.

The Chinese Communist Party is the core of leadership of the whole Chinese people. Without this core, the cause of socialism cannot be victorious.

Talk at the general reception for the delegates to the Third National Congress of the New Democratic Youth League of China (May 25, 1957).

A well-disciplined Party armed with the theory of Marxism-Leninism, using the method of self-criticism and linked with the masses of the people; an army under the leadership of such a Party; a united front of all revolutionary classes and all revolutionary groups under the leadership of such a Party – these are the three main weapons with which we have defeated the enemy.

“On the People’s Democratic Dictatorship” (June 30, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 422.

We must have faith in the masses and we must have faith in the Party. These are two cardinal principles. If we doubt these principles, we shall accomplish nothing.

On the Question of Agricultural Co-operation  (.July 31, 1955), 3rd ed., p. 7.

Armed with Marxist-Leninist theory and ideology, the Communist Party of China has brought a new style of work to the Chinese people, a style of work which essentially entails integrating theory with practice, forging close links with the masses and practising self-criticism.

“On Coalition Government” (April 24, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. III, p. 314.

No political party can possibly lead a great revolutionary movement to victory unless it possesses revolutionary theory and a knowledge of history and has a profound grasp of the practical movement.

“The Role of the Chinese Communist Party in the National War” (October 1938), Selected Works,  Vol. II, p. 208.

As we used to say, the rectification movement is “a widespread movement of Marxist education”. Rectification means the whole Party studying Marxism through criticism and self-criticism. We can certainly learn more about Marxism in the course of the rectification movement.

Speech at the Chinese Communist Party’s National Conference on Propaganda Work  (March 12, l957), 1st pocket ed., p. 14.

It is an arduous task to ensure a better life for the several hundred million people of China and to build our economically and culturally backward country into a prosperous and powerful one with a high level of culture. And it is precisely in order to be able to shoulder this task more competently and work better together with all non-Party people who are actuated by high ideals and determined to institute reforms that we must conduct rectification movements both now and in the future, and constantly rid ourselves of whatever is wrong.

Ibid.,  pp. 15-16.

Policy is the starting-point of all the practical actions of a revolutionary party and manifests itself in the process and the end-result of that party’s actions. A revolutionary party is carrying out a policy whenever it takes any action. If it is not carrying out a correct policy, it is carrying out a wrong policy; if it is not carrying out a given policy consciously, it is doing so blindly. What we call experience is the process and the end-result of carrying out a policy. Only through the practice of the people, that is, through experience, can we verify whether a policy is correct or wrong and determine to what extent it is correct or wrong. But people’s practice, especially the practice of a revolutionary party and the revolutionary masses, cannot but be bound up with one policy or another. Therefore, before any action is taken, we must explain the policy, which we have formulated in the light of the given circumstances, to Party members and to the masses. Otherwise, Party members and the masses will depart from the guidance of our policy, act blindly and carry out a wrong policy.

On the Policy Concerning Industry and Commerce” (February 27, 1948), Selected Works,  Vol. IV. pp. 204-05.

Our Party has laid down the general line and general policy of the Chinese revolution as well as various specific lines for work and specific policies. However, while many comrades remember our Party’s specific lines for work and specific policies, they often forget its general line and general policy. If we actually forget the Party’s general line and general policy, then we shall be blind, half-baked, muddle-headed revolutionaries, and when we carry out a specific line for work and a specific policy, we shall lose our bearings and vacillate now to the left and now to the right, and the work will suffer.

“Speech at a Conference of Cadres in the Shansi-Suiyuan Liberated Area” (April 1, 1948), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 238.

Policy and tactics are the life of the Party; leading comrades at all levels must give them full attention and must never on any account be negligent.

“A Circular on the Situation” (March 20, 1948), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 220.

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2. Classes And Class Struggle

Classes struggle, some classes triumph, others are eliminated. Such is history, such is tlhe history of civilization for thousands of years. To interpret history from this viewpoint is historical materialism; standing in opposition to this viewpoint is historical idealism.

“Cast Away Illusions, Prepare for Struggle” (August 14, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 428.

In class society everyone lives as a member of a particular class, and every kind of thinking, without exception, is stamped with the brand of a class.

“On Practice” (July 1937), Selected Works,  Vol. I, p. 296.

Changes in society are due chiefly to the development of the internal contradictions in society, that is, the contradiction between the productive forces and the relations of production, the contradiction between classes and the contradiction between the old and the new; it is the development of these contradictions that pushes society forward and gives the impetu6 for the supersession of the old society by the new.

“On Contradiction” (August 1937), Selected Works,  Vol. I, P. 314.

The ruthless economic exploitation and political oppression of the peasants by the landlord class forced them into numerous uprisings against its rule…. It was the class struggles of the peasants, the peasant uprisings and peasant wars that constituted the real motive force of historical development in Chinese feudal society.

“The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party” (December 1939), Selected Works,  Vol. II, p. 308.

In the final analysis, national struggle is a matter of class struggle. Among the whites in the United States it is only the reactionary ruling circles who oppress the black people. They can in no way represent the workers, farmers, revolutionary intellectuals and other enlightened persons who comprise the overwhelming majority of the white people.

“Statement Supporting the American Negroes in Their Just Struggle Against Racial Discrimination by U.S. Imperialism” (August 8, 1963), People of the World, Unite and Defeat the U.S. Aggressors and All Their Lackeys,  2nd ed., pp. 3-4.

It is up to us to organize the people. As for the reactionaries in China, it is up to us to organize the people to overthrow them. Everything reactionary is the same; if you don’t hit it, it won’t fall. This is also like sweeping the floor; as a rule, where the broom does not reach, the dust will not vanish of itself.

“The Situation and Our Policy After the Victory in the War of Resistance Against Japan” (August 13, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 19.

The enemy will not perish of himself. Neither the Chinese reactionaries nor the aggressive forces of U.S. imperialism in China will step down from the stage of history of their own accord.

“Carry the Revolution Through to the End” (December 30, 1948), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 301.

A revolution is not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a picture, or doing embroidery; it cannot be so refined, so leisurely and gentle, so temperate, kind, courteous, restrained and magnanimous. A revolution is an insurrection, an act of violence by which one class overthrows another.

“Report on an Investigation of the Peasant Movement in Hunan” (March 1927), Selected Works,  Vol. I, p. 28.

Chiang Kai-shek always tries to wrest every ounce of power and every ounce of gain from the people. And we? Our policy is to give him tit for tat and to fight for every inch of land. We act after his fashion. He always tries to impose war on the people, one sword in his left hand and another in his right. We take up swords, too, following his example…. As Chiang Kai-shek is now sharpening his swords, we must sharpen ours too.

“The Situation and Our Policy After the Victory in the War of Resistance Against Japan” (August 13, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, pp. 14-l5.

Who are our enemies? Who are our friends? This is a question of the first importance for the revolution. The basic reason why all previous revolutionary struggles in China achieved so little was their failure to unite with real friends in order to attack real enemies. A revolutionary party is the guide of the masscs, and no revolution ever succeeds when the revolutionary party leads them astray. To ensure that we will definitely achieve success in our revolution and will not lead the masses astray, we must pay attention to uniting with our real friends in order to attack our real enemies. To distinguish real friends from real enemies, we must make a general analysis of the economic status of the various classes in Chinese society and of their respective attitudes towards the revolution.

“Analysis of the Classes in Chinese Society” (March 1926), Selected Works,  Vol. I, p. 13.

Our enemies are all those in league with imperialism – the warlords, the bureaucrats, the comprador class, the big Landlord class and the teactionary section of the intelligentsia attached to them. The leading force in our revolution is the industrial proletariat. Our closest friends are the entire semi-proletariat and petty bourgeoisie. As for the vacillating middle bourgeoisie, their right-wing may become our enemy and their left-wing may become our friend – but we must be constantly on our guard and not let them create confusion within our ranks.

Ibid.,  p. 19.

Whoever sides with the revolutionary people is a revolutionary. Whoever sides with imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism is a counter-revolutionary. Whoever sides with the revolutionary people in words only but acts otherwise is a revolutionary in speech. Whoever sides with the revolutionary people in deed as well as in word is a revolutionary in the full sense.

Closing speech at the Second Session of the First National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (June 23, 1950).

I hold that it is bad as far as we are concerned if a person, a political party, an army or a school is not attacked by the enemy, for in that case it would definitely mean that we have sunk to the level of the enemy. It is good if we are attacked by the enemy, since it proves that we have drawn a clear line of demarcation between the enemy and ourselves. It is still better if the enemy attacks us wildly and paints us as utterly black and without a single virtue; it demonstrates that we have not only drawn a clear line of demarcation between the enemy and ourselves but achieved a great deal in our work.

To Be Attacked by the Enemy Is Not a Bad Thing but a Good Thing  (May 26, 1939), 1st pocket ed., p. 2.

We should support whatever the enemy opposes and oppose whatever the enemy supports.

“Interview with Three Correspondents from the Central News Agency, the Sao Tang Pao  and the Hsin Min Pao”  (September 16, 1939), Selected Works,  Vol. II, p. 272.

Our stand is that of the proletariat and of the masses. For members of the Communist Party, this means keeping to the stand of the Party, keeping to Party spirit and Party policy.

“Talks at the Yenan Forum on Literature and Art” (May 1942), Selected Works,  Vol. III, p. 70.

After the enemies with guns have been wiped out, there will still be enemies without guns; they are bound to struggle desperately against us, and we must never regard these enemies lightly. If we do nor now raise and understand the problem in this way, we shall commit the gravest mistakes.

“Report to the Second Plenary Session of the Seventh Central Committee of the Communist Party of China” (March 5, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 364.

The imperialists and domestic reactionaries will certainly not take their defeat Iying down and they will struggle to the last ditch. After there is peace and otder throughout the country, they will still engage in sabotage and create disturbances in various ways and will try every day and every minute to stage a come-back. This is inevitable and beyond all doubt, and under no circumstances must we relax our vigilance.

Opening address at the Pirst Plenary Session of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (September 21. 1949).

In China, although in the main socialist transformation has been completed with respect to the system of ownership, and although the large-scale and turbulent class struggles of the masses characteristic of the previous revolutionary periods have in the main come to an end, there are still remnants of the overthrown landlord and comprador classes, there is still a bourgeoisie, and the remoulding of the petty bourgeoisie has only just started. The class struggle is by no means over. The class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, the class struggle between the different political forces, and the class struggle in the ideological held between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie will continue to be long and tortuous and at times will even become very acute. The proletariat seeks to transform the world according to its own world outlook, and so does the bourgeoisie. In this respect, the question of which will win out, socialism or capitalism, is still not really settled.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed., pp. 51-52.

It will take a fairly long period of time to decide the issue in the ideological struggle between socialism and capitalism in our country. The reason is that the influence of the bourgeoisie and of the intellectuals who come from the old society will remain in our country for a long time to come, and so will their class ideology. If this is not sufficiently understood, or is not understood at all, the gravest mistakes will be made and the necessity of waging the struggle in the ideological field will be ignored.

Ibid.,  pp. 52-53.

In our country bourgeois and petty-bourgeois ideology, anti-Marxist ideology, will continue to exist for a long time. Basically, the socialist system has been established in our country. We have won the basic victory in transforming the ownership of the means of production, but we have not yet won complete victory on the political and ideological fronts. In the ideological field, the question of who will win in the struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie has not been really settled yet. We still have to wage a protracted struggle against bourgeois and petty-bourgeois ideology. It is wrong not to understand this and to give up ideological struggle. All erroneous ideas, all poisonous weeds, all ghosts and monsters, must be subjected to criticism; in no circumstance should they be allowed to spread unchecked. However, the criticism should be fully reasoned, analytical and convincing, and not rough, bureaucratic, metaphysical or dogmatic.

Speech at the Chinese Communist Party’s National Conference on Propaganda Work (March 12, 1957), 1st pocket ed., pp. 26-27.

Both dogmatism and revisionism run counter to Marxism. Marxism must certainly advance; it must develop along with the development of practice and cannot stand still. It would become lifeless if it remained stagnant and stereotyped. However, the basic principles of Marxism must never be violated, or otherwise mistakes will be made. It is dogmatism to approach Marxism from a metaphysical point of view and to regard it as something rigid. It is revisionism to negate the basic principles of Marxism and to negate its universal truth. Revisionism is one form of bourgeois ideology. The revisionists deny the differences between socialism and capitalism, between the dictatorship of the proletariat and the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. What they advocate is in fact not the socialist line but the capitalist line. In present circumstances, revisionism is more pernicious than dogmatism. One of our current important tasks on the ideological front is to unfold criticism of revisionism.

Ibid.,  pp. 27-28.

Revisionism, or Right opportunism, is a bourgeois trend of thought that is even more dangerous than dogmatism. The revisionists, the Right opportunists, pay lipservice to Marxism; they too attack “dogmatism”. But what they are really attacking is the quintessence of Marxism. They oppose or distort materialism and dialectics, oppose or try to weaken the people’s democratic dictatorship and the leading role of the Communist Party, and oppose or try to weaken socialist transformation and socialist construction. After the basic victory of the socialist revolution in our country, there are still a number of people who vainly hope to restore the capitalist system and fight the working class on every front, including the ideological one. And their right-hand men in this struggle are the revisionists.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed., pp. 56-57.

3. Socialism And Communism

Communism is at once a complete system of proletarian ideology and a new social system. It is different from any other ideological and social system, and is the most complete, progressive, revolutionary and rational system in human history. The ideological and social system of feudalism has a place only in the museum of history. The ideological and social system of capitalism has also become a museum piece in one part of the world (in the Soviet Union), while in other countries it resembles “a dying person who is sinking fast, like the sun setting beyond the western hills”, and will soon be relegated to the museum. The communist ideological and social system alone is full of youth and vitality, sweeping the world with the momentum of an avalanche and the force of a thunderbolt.

“On New Democracy” (January 1940), Selected Works,  Vol. II, pp. 360-61.

The socialist system will eventually replace the capitalist system; this is an objective law independent of man’s will. However much the reactionaries try to hold back the wheel of history, sooner or later revolution will take place and will inevitably triumph.

“Speech at the Meeting of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R. in Celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution” (November 6, 1957).

We Communists never conceal our political views. Definitely and beyond all doubt, our future or maximum programme is to carry China forward to socialism and communism. Both the name of our Party and our Marxist world outlook unequivocally point to this supreme ideal of the future, a future of incomparable brightness and splendour.

“On Coalition Government” (April 24, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. III, p. 282.

Taken as a whole, the Chinese revolutionary movement led by the Communist Party embraces the two stages, i.e., the democratic and the socialist revolutions, which are two essentially different revolutionary processes, and the second process can be carried through only after the first has been completed. The democratic revolution is the necessary preparation for the socialist revolution, and the socialist revolution is the inevitable sequel to the democratic revolution. The ultimate aim for which all communists strive is to bring about a socialist and communist society.

“The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party” (December 1939), Selected Works,  Vol. II, pp. 330-31.

Socialist revolution aims at liberating the productive forces. The change-over from individual to socialist, collective ownership in agriculture and handicrafts and from capitalist to socialist ownership in private industry and commerce is bound to bring about a tremendous liberation of the productive forces. Thus the social conditions are being created for a tremendous expansion of industrial and agricultural production.

Speech at the Supreme State Conference (January 25, 1956).

We are now carrying out a revolution not only in the social system, the change from private to public ownership, but also in technology, the change from handicraft to large-scale modern machine production, and the two revolutions are interconnected. In agriculture, with conditions as they are in our country co-operation must precede the use of big machinery (in capitalist countries agriculture develops in a capitalist way). Therefore we must on no account regard industry and agriculture, socialist industrialization and the socialist transformation of agriculture as two separate and isolated things, and on no account must we emphasize the one and play down the other.

On the Question of Agricultural Co-operation  (July 51, 1955), 3rd ed., pp. 19-20.

The new social system has only just been established and requires time for its consolidation. It must not be assumed that the new system can be completely consolidated the moment it is established, for that is impossible. It has to be consolidated step by step. To achieve its ultimate consolidation, it is necessary not only to bring about the socialist industrialisation of the country and persevere in the socialist revolution on the economic front, but to carry on constant and arduous socialist revolutionary struggles and socialist education on the political and ideological fronts. Moreover, various contributory international factors are required.

Speech at the Chinese Communist Party’s National Conference on Propaganda Work  (March 12, 1957), 1st pocket ed., p. 2.

In China the struggle to consolidate the socialist system, the struggle to decide whether socialism or capitalism will prevail, will still take a long historical period. But we should all realise that the new system of socialism will unquestionably be consolidated. We can assuredly build a socialist state with modern industry, modern agriculture, and modern science and culture.

Ibid.,  pp. 2-3.

The number of intellectuals who are hostile to our state is very small. They do not like our state, i.e., the dictatorship of the proletariat, and yearn for the old society. Whenever there is an opportunity they will stir up trouble and attempt to overthrow the Communist Party and restore the old China. As between the proletarian and the bourgeois roads, as between the socialist and the capitalist roads, these people stubbornly choose to follow the latter. In fact this road is impossible, and in fact, therefore, they are ready to capitulate to imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism. Such people are to be found in political circles and in industrial and commercial, cultural and educational, scientific and technological and religious circles, and they are extremely reactionary.

Ibid.,  pp. 3-4.

The serious problem is the education of the peasantry. The peasant economy is scattered, and the socialization of agriculture, judging by the Soviet Union’s experience, will require a long time and painstaking work. Without socialization of agriculture, there can be no complete, consolidated socialism.

“On the People’s Democratic Dictatorship” June 30, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 419.

We must have faith, first, that the peasant masses are ready to advance step by step along the road of socialism under the leadership of the Party, and second, that the Party is capable of leading the peasants along this road. These two points are the essence of the matter, the main current.

On the Question of Agricultural Co-operation  (July 31, 1955), 3rd ed., p. 18.

The leading bodies in co-operatives must establish the dominant position of the poor peasants and the new lower middle peasants in these bodies, with the old lower middle peasants and the upper middle peasants – whether old or new – as the supplementary force. Only thus can uniq between the poor and middle peasants be attained, the co-operatives be consolidated, production be expanded and the socialist transformation of the entire countryside be correctly accomplished in accordance with the Party’s policy. Otherwise, unity between the middle and poor peasants cannot be attained, the co-operatives cannot be consolidated, production cannot be expanded, and the socialist transformation of the entire countryside cannot be achieved.

Introductory note to “How Control of the Wutang Co-operative Shifted from the Middle to the Poor Peasants” (1955), The Socialist Upsurge in China’s Countryside,  Chinese ed., Vol. II.

It is essential to unite with the middle peasants, and it is wrong not to do so. But on whom must the working class and the Communist Party rely in the countryside in order to unite with the middle peasants and realize the socialist transformation of the entire countryside? Surely on none other than the poor peasants. That was the case when the struggle against the landlords was being waged and the land reform was being carried out, and that is the case today when the struggle against the rich peasants and other capitalist elements is being waged to achieve the socialist transformation of agriculture. In both these revolutionary periods, the middle peasants wavered in the initial stages. It is only after they clearly see the general trend of events and the approaching triumph of the revolution that the middle peasants will come in on the side of the revolution. The poor peasants must work on the middle peasants and win them over, so that the revolution will broaden from day to day until final victory.

Introductory note to “The Lesson of the ‘Middle-Peasant Cooperative’ and the ‘Poor-Peasant Co-operative’ in Fuan County” (1955), The Socialist Upsurge in China’s Countryside,  Chinese ed., Vol. II.

There is a serious tendency towards capitalism among the well-to-do peasants. This tendency will become rampant if we in the slightest way neglect political work among the peasants during the co-operative movement and for a very long period after.

Introductory note to “A Resolute Struggle Must Be Waged Against the Tendency Towards Capitalism” (1955), The Socialist Upsurge in China’s Countryside,  Chinese ed., Vol. I.

The agricultural co-operative movement has been a severe ideological and political struggle from the very beginning. No cooperative can be established without going through such a struggle. Before a brand-new social system can be built on the site of the old, the site must be swept clean. Invariably, remnants of old ideas reflecting the old system remain in people’s minds for a long time, and they do not easily give way. After a co-operative is established, it must go through many more struggles before it can be consolidated. Even then, the moment it relaxes its efforts it may collapse.

Introductory note to “A Serious Lesson” (1955), The Socialist Upsurge in China’s Countryside,  Chinese ed., Vol. I.

The spontaneous forces of capitalism have been steadily growing in the countryside in recent years, with new rich peasants springing up everywhere and many well-to-do middle peasants striving to become rich peasants. On the other hand, many poor peasants are still living in poverty for lack of sufficient means of production, with some in debt and others selling or renting out their land. If this tendency goes unchecked, the polarization in the countryside will inevitably be aggravated day by day. Those peasants who lose their land and those who remain in poverty will complain that we are doing nothing to save them from ruin or to help them overcome their difficulties. Nor will the well-to-do middle peasants who are heading in the capitalist direction be pleased with us, for we shall never be able to satisfy their demands unless we intend to take the capitalist road. Can the worker-peasant alliance continue to stand hrm in these circumstances ? Obviously not. There is no solution to this problem except on a new basis. And that means to bring about, step by step, the socialist transformation of the whole of agriculture simultaneously with the gradual realization of socialist industrialization and the socialist transformation of handicrafts and capitalist industry and commerce; in other words, it means to carry out co-operation and eliminate the rich-peasant economy and the individual economy in the countryside so that all the rural people will become increasingly well off together. We maintain that this is the only way to consolidate the worker-peasant alliance.

On the Question of Agricultural Co-operation  (July 31, 1955), 3rd ed., pp. 26-27.

By over-all planning we mean planning which takes into consideration the interests of the 600 million people of our country. In drawing up plans, handling affairs or thinking over problems, we must proceed from the fact that China has a population of 600 million people, and we must never forget this fact.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed. p. 47.

In addition to the leadership of the Party, a decisive factor is our population of 600 million. More people mean a greater ferment of ideas, more enthusiasm and more energy. Never before have the masses of the people been so inspired, so militant and so daring as at present.

“Introducing a Co-operative” (April 15, 1958).

Apart from their other characteristics, the outstanding thing about China’s 600 million people is that they are “poor and blank”. This may seem a bad thing, but in reality it is a good thing. Poverty gives rise to the desire for change, the desire for action and the desire for revolution. On a blank sheet of paper free from any mark, the freshest and most beautiful characters can be written, the freshest and most beautiful pictures can be painted.

Ibid.

After the country-wide victory of the Chinese revolution and the solution of the land problem, two basic contradictions will still exist in China. The first is internal, that is, the contradiction between the working class and the bourgeoisie. The second is external, that is, the contradiction between China and the imperialist countries. Consequently, after the victory of the people’s democratic revolution, the state power of the people’s republic under the leadership of the working class must not be weakened but must be strengthened.

“Report to the Second Plenary Session of the Seventh Central Committee of the Communist Party of China” (March 5, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 369.

“Don’t you want to abolish state power?” Yes, we do, but not right now; we cannot do it yet. Why? Because imperialism still exists, because domestic reaction still exists, because classes still exist in our country. Our present task is to strengthen the people’s state apparatus – mainly the people’s army, the people’s police and the people’s courts – in order to consolidate national defence and protect the people’s interests.

“On the People’s Democratic Dictatorship” (June 30, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 418.

Our state is a people’s democratic dictatorship led by the working class and based on the worker-peasant alliance. What is this dictatorship for? Its first function is to suppress the reactionary classes and elements and those exploiters in our country who resist the socialist revolution, to suppress those who try to wreck our socialist construction, or in other words, to resolve the internal contradictions between ourselves and the enemy. For instance, to arrest, try and sentence certain counterrevolutionaries, and to deprive landlords and bureaucrat-capitalists of their right to vote and their freedom of speech for a specified period of time – all this comes within the scope of our dictatorship. To maintain public order and safeguard the interests of the people, it is likewise necessary to exercise dictatorship over embezzlers, swindlers, arsonists, murderers, criminal gangs and other scoundrels who seriously disrupt public order. The second function of this dictatorship is to protect our country from subversion and possible aggression by external enemies. In that event, it is the task of this dictatorship to resolve the external contradiction between ourselves and the enemy. The aim of this dictatorship is to protect all our people so that they can devote themselves to peaceful labour and build China into a socialist country with a modern industry, agriculture, science and culture.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed., pp. 6-7.

The people’s democratic dictatorship needs the leadership of the working class. For it is only the working class that is most far-sighted, most selfless and most thoroughly revolutionary. The entire history of revolution proves that without the leadership of the working class revolution fails and that with the leadership of the working class revolution triumphs.

“On the People’s Democratic Dictatorship” (June 30, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 421.

The people’s democratic dictatorship is based on the alliance of the working class, the peasantry and the urban petty bourgeoisie, and mainly on the alliance of the workers and the peasants, because these two classes comprise 80 to go per cent of China’s population. These two classes are the main force in overthrowing imperialism and the Kuomintang reactionaries. The transition from New Democracy to socialism also depends mainly upon their alliance.

Ibid.

Class struggle, the struggle for production and scientific experiment are the three great revolutionary movements for building a mighty socialist country. These movements are a sure guarantee that Communists will be free from bureaucracy and immune against revisionism and dogmatism, and will for ever remain invincible. They are a reliable guarantee that the proletariat will be able to unite with the broad working masses and realize a democratic dictatorship. If, in the absence of these movements, the landlords, rich peasants, counterrevolutionaries, bad elements and monsters were all allowed to crawl out, while our cadres were to shut their eyes to all this and in many cases fail even to differentiate between the enemy and ourselves but were to collaborate with the enemy and were corrupted, divided and demoralized by him, if our cadres were thus pulled out or the enemy were able to sneak in, and if many of our workers, peasants, and intellectuals were left defenceless against both the soft and the hard tactics of the enemy, then it would not take long, perhaps only several years or a decade, or several decades at most, before a counterrevolutionary restoration on a national scale inevitably occurred, the Marxist-Leninist party would undoubtedly become a revisionist party or a fascist party, and the hole of China would change its colour.

Note on “The Seven Well-Written Documents of Chekiang Province Concerning Cadres’ Participation in Physical Labour” (May 9, 1963), quoted in On Khrushchov’s Phoney Communism and Its Historical Lessons for the World,  pp. 7l-72.

The people’s democratic dictatorship uses two methods. Towards the enemy, it uses the method of dictatorship, that is, for as long a period of time as is necessary it does not let them take part in political activities and compels them to obey the law of the People’s Government and to engage in labour and, through labour, transform themselves into new men. Towards the people, on the contrary, it uses the method not of compulsion but of democracy, that is, it must necessarily let them take part in political activities and does not compel them to do this or that, but uses the method of democracy in educating and persuading them.

Closing speech at the Second Session of the First National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (June 23, 1950).

Under the leadership of the Communist Party, the Chinese people are carrying out a vigorous rectification movement in order to bring about the rapid development of socialism in China on a firmer basis. It is a movement for carrying out a nation-wide debate which is both guided and free, a debate in the city and the countryside on such questions as the socialist road versus the capitalist road, the basic system of the state and its major policies, the working style of Party and government functionaries, and the question of the welfare of the people, a debate which is conducted by setting forth facts and reasoning things out, so as correctly to resolve those actual contradictions among the people which demand immediate solution. This is a socialist movement for the self-education and selfremoulding of the people.

“Speech at the Meeting of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R. in Celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution” (November 6, 1957)

Most arduous tasks lie ahead of us in the great work of construction. Although there are over I0 million members in our Party, they still constitute a very small minority of the country’s population. In government departments and public organizations and enterprises much work has to be done by non-Party people. It is impossible to get this work well done unless we are good at relying on the masses and co-operating with non-Party people. While continuing to strengthen the unity of the whole Party, we must also continue to strengthen the unity of all our nationalities, democratic classes, democratic parties and people’s organizations, and to consolidate and expand the people’s democratic united front, and we must conscientiously get rid of every unhealthy manifestation in any link in our work that is detrimental to the unity between the Party and the people.

“Opening Address at the Eighth National Congress of the Communist Party of China” (September 15, 1956).

4. The Correct Handling Of Contradictions Among The People

We are confronted by two types of social contradictions – those between ourselves and the enemy and those among the people themselves. The two are totally different in their nature.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed.. p. 2.

To understand these two different types of contradictions correctly, we must hrst be clear on what is meant by “the people” and what is meant by “the enemy”. . . At the present stage, the period of building socialism, the classes, strata and social groups which favour, support and work for the cause of socialist construction all come within the category of the people, while the social forces and groups which resist the socialist revolution and are hostile to or sabotage socialist construction are all enemies of the people.

Ibid.,  pp. 2-3.

In the conditions prevailing in China today, the contradictions among the people comprise the contradictions within the working class, the contradictions within the peasantry, the contradictions within the intelligentsia, the contradictions between the working class and the peasantry, the contradictions between the workers and peasants on the one hand and the intellectuals on the other, the contradictions between the working class and other sections of the working people on the one hand and the national bourgeoisie on the other, the contradictions within the national bourgeoisie, and so on. Our People’s Government is one that genuinely represents the people’s interests, it is a government that serves the people. Nevertheless, there are still certain contradictions between the government and the people. These include contradictions among the interests of the state, the interests of the collective and the interests of the individual; between democracy and centralism; between the leadership and the led; and the contradiction arising from the bureaucratic style of work of certain government workers in their relations with the masses. All these are also contradictions among the people. Generally speaking, the people’s basic identity of interests underlies the contradictions among the people.

Ibid.,  pp. 3-4.

The contradictions between ourselves and the enemy are antagonistic contradictions. Within the ranks of the people, the contradictions among the working people are non-antagonistic, while those between the exploited and the exploiting classes have a non-antagonistic aspect in addition to an antagonistic aspect.

Ibid.,  p. 3.

In the political life of our people, how should right be distinguished from wrong in one’s words and actions? On the basis of the principles of our Constitution, the will of the overwhelming majority of our people and the common political positions which have been proclaimed on various occasions by our political parties and groups, we consider that, broadly speaking, the criteria should be as follows:
(1) Words and actions should help to unite, and not divide, the people of our various nationalities.
(2) They should be beneficial, and not harmful, to socialist transformation and socialist construction.
(3) They should help to consolidate, and not undermine or weaken, the people’s democratic dictatorship.
(4) They should help to consolidate, and not undermine or weaken, democratic centralism.
(5) They should help to strengthen, and not discard or weaken, the leadership of the Communist Party.
(6) They should be beneficial, and not harmful, to international socialist unity and the unity of the peace-loving people of the world.
Of these six criteria, the most important are the socialist path and the leadership of the Party.

Ibid.,  pp. 57-58.

The question of suppressing counterrevolutionaries is one of a struggle between ourselves and the enemy, a contradiction between ourselves and the enemy. Among the people, there are some who see this question in a somewhat different light. Two kinds of persons hold views different from ours. Those with a Rightist way of thinking make no distinction between ourselves and the enemy and take the enemy for our own people. They regard as friends the very persons whom the broad masses regard as enemies. Those with a “Left” way of thinking magnify contradictions between ourselves and the enemy to such an extent that they take certain contradictions among the people for contradictions with the enemy and regard as counter-revolutionariei persons who are actually not counter-revolutionaries. Both these views are wrong. Neither can lead to the correct handling of the question of suppressing counter-revolutionaries or to a correct assessment of this work.

Ibid.,  p. 25.

Qualitatively different contradictions can only be resolved by qualitatively different methods. For instance, the contradiction between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie is resolved by the method of socialist revolution; the contradiction between the great masses of the people and the feudal system is resolved by the method of democratic revolution; the contradiction between the colonies and imperialism is resolved by the method of national revolutionary war; the contradiction between the working class and the peasant class in socialist society is resolved by the method of collectivization and mechanization in agriculture; contradiction within the Communist Party is resolved by the method of criticism and self-criticism; the contradiction between society and nature is resolved by the method of developing the productive forces. . . . The principle of using different methods to resolve different contradictions is one which Marxist-Leninists must strictly observe.

“On Contradiction” (August 1937), Selected Works,  Vol. I, pp. 321-22.

Since they are different in nature, the contradictions between ourselves and the enemy and the contradictions among the people must be resolved by different methods. To put it briefly, the former are a matter of drawing a clear distinction between ourselves and the enemy, and the latter a matter of drawing a clear distinction between right and wrong. It is, of course, true that the distinction between ourselves and the enemy is also a matter of right and wrong. For example, the question of who is in the right, we or the domestic and foreign reactionaries, the imperialists, the feudalists and bureaucrat-capitalists, is also a matter of right and wrong, but it is in a different category from questions of right and wrong among the people.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed., pp. 5-6.

The only way to settle questions of an ideological nature or controversial issues among the people is by the democratic method, the method of discussion, of criticism, of persuasion and education, and not by the method of coercion or repression.

To be able to carry on their production and studies effectively and to arrange their lives properly, the people want their government and those in charge of production and of cultural and educational organizations to issue appropriate orders of an obligatory nature. It is common sense that the maintenance of public order would be impossible without such administrative regulations. Administrative orders and the method of persuasion and education complement each other in resolving contradictions among the people. Even administrative regulations for the maintenance of public order must be accompanied by persuasion and education, for in many cases regulations alone will not work.

Ibid.,  pp. 11-12.

Inevitably, the bourgeoisie and petty bourgeoisie will give expression to their own ideologies. Inevitably, they will stubbornly express 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 and at the same time argue with them and direct appropriate criticism at them. We must undoubtedly criticize wrong ideas of every description. It certainly would not be right to refrain from criticism, look on while wrong ideas spread unchecked and allow them to monopolize the field. Mistakes must be criticized and poissnous weeds fought wherever they crop up. However, such criticism should not be dogmatic, and the metaphysical method should not be used, but efforts should be made to apply the dialectical method. What is needed is scientific analysis and convincing argument.

Ibid.,  pp. 55-56.

To criticize the people’s shortcomings is necessary, . . . but in doing so we must truly take the stand of the people and speak out of whole-hearted eagerness to protect and educate them. To treat comrades like enemies is to go over to the stand of the enemy.

“Talks at the Yenan Forum on Literature and Art” (May 1942), Selected Works,  Vol. III, p. 92.

Contradiction and struggle are universal and absolute, but the methods of resolving contradictions, that is, the forms of struggle, differ according to the differences in the nature of the contradictions. Some contradictions are characterized by open antagonism, others are not. In accordance with the concrete development of things, some contradictions which were originally non-antagonistic develop into antagonistic ones, while others which were originally antagonistic develop into non-antagonistic ones.

“On Contradiction” (August 1937), Selected Works,  Vol. I, p 344.

In ordinary circumstances, contradictions among the people are not antagonistic. But if they are not handled properly, or if we relax our vigilance and lower our guard, antagonism may arise. In a socialist country, a development of this kind is usually only a localized and temporary phenomenon. The reason is that the system of exploitation of man by man has been abolished and the interests of the people are basically the same.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed., p. 14.

In our country, the contradiction between the working class and the national bourgeoisie belongs to the category of contradictions among the people. By and large, the class struggle between the two is a class struggle within the ranks of the people, because the Chinese national bourgeoisie has a dual character. In the period of the bourgeois-democratic revolution, it had both a revolutionary and a conciliationist side to its character. 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 support of the Constitution and its willingness to accept socialist transformation constitute the other. The national bourgeoisie differs from the imperialists, the landlords and the bureaucrat-capitalists. The contradiction between the national bourgeoisie and the working class is one between the exploiter and the exploited, and is by nature antagonistic. But in the concrete conditions of China, this antagonistic class contradiction can, if properly handled, be transformed into a non-antagonistic one and be resolved by peaceful methods. However, it will change into a contradiction between ourselves and the enemy if we do not handle it properly and do not follow the policy of uniting with, criticizing and educating the national bourgeoisie, or if the national bourgeoisie does not accept this policy of ours.

Ibid.,  p. 4-5.

It [the counter-revolutionary rebellion in Hungary in 1956] was a case of reactionaries inside a socialist country, in league with the imperialists, attempting to achieve their conspiratorial aims by taking advantage of contradictions among the people to foment dissension and stir up disorder. This lesson of the Hungarian events merits attention.

Ibid.,  p. 15.

5. War And Peace

War  is the highest form of struggle for resolving contradictions, when they have developed to a certain stage, between classes, nations, states, or political groups, and it has existed ever since the emergence of private property and of classes.

“Problems of Strategy in China’s Revolutionary War” (December 1936), Selected Works,  Vol. I, p. 180.

“War is the continuation of politics.” In this sense war is politics and war itself is a political action; since ancient times there has never been a war that did not have a political character….

But war has its own particular characteristics and in this sense it cannot be equated with politics in general. “War is the continuation of politics by other . . . means.” When politics develops to a certain stage beyond which it cannot proceed by the usual means, war breaks out to sweep the obstacles from the way…. When the obstacle is removed and our political aim attained the war will stop. But if the obstacle is not completely swept away, the war will have to continue till the aim is fully accomplished…. It can therefore be said that politics is war without bloodshed while war is politics with bloodshed.

“On Protracted War” (May 1938), Selected Works,  Vol. II, pp. 152-53

History shows that wars are divided into two kinds, just and unjust. All wars that are progressive are just, and all wars that impede progress are unjust. We Communists oppose all unjust wars that impede progress, but we do not oppose progressive, just wars. Not only do we Communists not oppose just wars, we actively participate in them. As for unjust wars, World War I is an instance in which both sides fought for imperialist interests; therefore the Communists of the whole world hrmly opposed that war. The way to oppose a war of this kind is to do everything possible to prevent it before it breaks out and, once it breaks out, to oppose war with war, to oppose unjust war with just war, whenever possible.

Ibid.,  p. 150.

Revolutions and revolutionary wars are inevitable in class society, and without them it is impossible to accomplish any leap in social development and to overthrow the reactionary ruling classes and therefore impossible for the people to win political power.

“On Contradiction” (August1937), Selected Works,  Vol. I, p. 344.

Revolutionary war is an antitoxin which not only eliminates the enemy’s poison but also purges us of our own filth. Every just, revolutionary war is endowed with tremendous power and can transform many things or clear the way for their transformation. The Sino-Japanese war will transform both China and Japan; provided China perseveres in the War of Resistance and in the united front, the old Japan will surely be transformed into a new Japan and the old China into a new China, and people and everything else in both China and Japan will be transformed during and after the war.

“On Protracted War” (May 1938), Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 131.

Every Communist must grasp the truth, “Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.”

“Problems of War and Strategy” (November 6, 1938), Selected Works,  Vol. II, p. 224.

The seizure of power by armed force, the settlement of the issue by war, is the central task and the highest form of revolution. This Marxist-Leninist principle of revolution holds good universally, for China and for all other countries.

Ibid.,  p. 219.

Without armed struggle neither the proletariat, nor the people, nor the Communist Party would have any standing at all in China and it would be impossible for the revolution to triumph. In these years [the eighteen years since the founding of the Party] the development, consolidation and bolshevization of our Party have proceeded in the midst of revolutionary wars; without armed struggle the Communist Party would assuredly not be what it is today. Comrades throughout the Party must never forget this experience for which we have paid in blood.

“Introducing The Communist”  (October 4, 1939), Selected Works,  Vol. II, p. 292.

According to the Marxist theory of the state, the army is the chief component of state power. Whoever wants to seize and retain state power must have a strong army. Some people ridicule us as advocates of the “omnipotence of war”. Yes, we are advocates of the omnipotence of revolutionary war; that is good, not bad, it is Marxist. The guns of the Russian Communist Party created socialism. We shall create a democratic republic. Experience in the class struggle in the era of imperialism teaches us that it is only by the power of the gun that the working class and the labouring masses can defeat the armed bourgeoisie and landlords; in this sense we may say that only with guns can the whole world be transformed.

“Problems of War and Strategy” (November 6, 1938), Selected Works,  Vol. II, p. 225.

We are advocates of the abolition of war, we do not want war; but war can only be abolished through war, and in order to get rid of the gun it is necessary to take up the gun.

Ibid. 

War, this monster of mutual slaughter among men, will be finally eliminated by the progress of human society, and in the not too distant future too. But there is only one way to eliminate it and that is to oppose war with war, to oppose counterrevolutionary war with revolutionary war, to oppose national counter-revolutionary war with national revolutionary war, and to oppose counter-revolutionary class war with revolutionary class war…. When human society advances to the point where classes and states are eliminated, there will be no more wars, counter-revolutionary or revolutionary, unjust or just; that will be the era of perpetual peace for mankind. Our study of the laws of revolutionary war springs from the desire to eliminate all wars; herein lies the distinction between us Communists and all the exploiting classes.

“Problems of Strategy in China’s Revolutionary War” (December 1936), Selected Works,  Vol. I, pp. 182-83.

Our country and all the other socialist countries want peace; so do the peoples of all the countries of the world. The only ones who crave war and do not want peace are certain monopoly capitalist groups in a handful of imperialist countries which depend on aggression for their profits.

“Opening Address at the Eighth National Congress of the Communist Party of China” (September 15, 1956).

To achieve a lasting world peace, we must further develop our friendship and co-operation with the fraternal countries in the socialist camp and strengthen our solidarity with all peace-loving countries. We must endeavour to establish normal diplomatic relations, on the basis of mutual respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty and of equality and mutual beneht, with all countries willing to live together with us in peace. We must give active support to the national independence and liberation move,ment in countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America as well as to the peace movement and to just struggles in all the countries of the world.

Ibid.

As for the imperialist countries, we should unite with their peoples and strive to coexist peacefully with those countries, do business with them and prevent any possible war, but under no circumstances should we harbour any unrealistic notions about them.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed., p. 75.

We desire peace. However, if imperialism insists on hghting a war, we will have no alternative but to take the hrm resolution to hght to the hnish before going ahead with our construction. If you are afraid of war day in day out, what will you do if war eventually comes? First I said that the East Wind is prevailing over the West Wind and war will not break out, and now I have added these explanations about the situation in case war should break out. Both possibilities have thus been taken into account.

Speech at the Moscow Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties (November 18, 1957), quoted in “Statement by the Spokesman of the Chinese Government” (September 1, 1963).

People all over the world are now discussing whether or not a third world war will break out. On this question, too, we must be mentally prepared and do some analysis. We stand firmly for peace and against war. But if the imperialists insist on unleashing another war, we should not be afraid of it. Our attitude on this question is the same as our attitude towards any disturbance: first, we are against it; second, we are not afraid of it. The First World War was followed by the birth of the Soviet Union with a population of 200 million. The Second World War was followed by the emergence of the socialist camp with a combined population of 900 million. If the imperialists insist on launching a third world war, it is certain that several hundred million more will turn to socialism, and then there will not be much room left on earth for the imperialists; it is also likely that the whole structure of imperialism will utterly collapse.

On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People  (February 27, 1957), 1st pocket ed., pp. 67-68.

Make trouble, fail, make trouble again, fail again . . . till their doom- that is the logic of the imperialists and all reactionaries the world over in dealing with the people’s cause, and they will never go against this logic. This is a Marxist law. When we say “imperialism is ferocious”, we mean that its nature will never change, that the imperialists will never lay down their butcher knives, that they will never become Buddhas, till their doom.

Fight, fail, fight again, fail again, fight again . . . till their victory; that is the logic of the people, and they too will never go against this logic. This is another Marxist law. The Russian people’s revolution followed this law, and so has the Chinese people’s revolution.

“Cast Away Illusions, Prepare for Struggle” (August 14, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 428.

Just because we have won victory, we must never relax our vigilance against the frenzied plots for revenge by the imperialists and their running dogs. Whoever relaxes vigilance will disarm himself politically and land himself in a passive position.

“Address to the Preparatory Committee of the New Political Consultative Conference” (June 15, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 407.

The imperialists and their running dogs, the Chinese reactionaries, will not resign themselves to defeat in this land of China. They will continue to gang up against the Chinese people in every possible way. For example, they will smuggle their agents into China to sow dissension and make trouble. That is certain; they will never neglect these activities. To take another example, the imperialists will incite the Chinese reactionaries, and even throw in their own forces, to blockade China’s ports. They will do this as long as it is possible. Furthermore, if they still hanker after adventures, they will send some of their troops to invade and harass China’s frontiers; this, too, is not impossible. All this we must take fully into account.

Ibid. 

The world is progressing, the future is bright and no one can change this general trend of history. We should carry on constant propaganda among the people on the facts of world progress and the bright future ahead so that they will build their confidence in victory.

“On the Chungking Negotiations” (October 17, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. IV. p. 59.

The commanders and fighters of the entire Chinese People’s Liberation Army absolutely must not relax in the least their will to fight; any thinking that relaxes the will to fight and belittles the enemy is wrong.

“Report to the Second Plenary Session of the Seventh Central Committee of the Communist Party of China” (March 5, 1949), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 361.

6. Imperialism And All Reactionaries Are Paper Tigers

All reactionaries are paper tigers. In appearance, the reactionaries are terrifying, but in reality they are not so powerful. From a long-term point of view, it is not the reactionaries but the people who are really powerful.

“Talk with the American Correspondent Anna Louise Strong” (August 1946), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 100.

Just as there is not a single thing in the world without a dual nature (this is the law of the unity of opposites), so imperialism and all reactionaries have a dual nature – they are real tigers and paper tigers at the same time. In past history, before they won state power and for some time afterwards, the slave-owning class, the feudal landlord class and the bourgeoisie were vigorous, revolutionary and progressive; they were real tigers. But with the lapse of time, because their opposites – the slave class, the peasant class and the proletariat – grew in strength step by step, struggled against them more and more fiercely, these ruling classes changed step by step into the reverse, changed into reactionaries, changed into backward people, changed into paper tigers. And eventually they were overthrown, or will be overthrown, by the people. The reactionary, backward, decaying classes retained this dual nature even in their last life-and-death struggles against the people. On the one hand, they were real tigers; they devoured people, devoured people by the millions and tens of millions. The cause of the people’s struggle went through a period of difficulties and hardships, and along the path there were many twists and turns. To destroy the rule of imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism in China took the Chinese people more than a hundred years and cost them tens of millions of lives before the victory in 1949. Look! Were these not living tigers, iron tigers, real tigers? But in the end they changed into paper tigers, dead tigers, bean-curd tigers. These are historical facts. Have people not seen or heard about these facts? There have indeed been thousands and tens of thousands of them ! Thousands and tens of thousands ! Hence, imperialism and all reactionaries, looked at in essence, from a long-term point of view, frorm a strategic point of view, must be seen for what they are – paper tigers. On this we should build our strategic thinking. On the other hand, they are also living tigers, iron tigers, real tigers which can devour people. On this we should build our tactical thinking.

Speech at the Wuchang Meeting of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (December 1, 1958), quoted in the explanatory note to “Talk with the American Correspondent Anna Louise Strong”, Selected Works,  Vol. IV, pp. 98-99.

I have said that all the reputedly powerful reactionaries are merely paper tigers. The reason is that they are divorced from the people. Look! Was not Hitler a paper tiger? Was Hitler not overthrown? I also said that the tsar of Russia, the emperor of China and Japanese imperialism were all paper tigers. As we know, they were all overthrown. U.S. imperialism has not yet been overthrown and it has the atom bomb. I believe it also will be overthrown. It, too, is a paper tiger.

Speech at the Moscow Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties (November 18, 1957).

“Lifting a rock only to drop it on one’s own feet” is a Chinese folk saying to describe the behaviour of certain fools. The reactionaries in all countries are fools of this kind. In the final analysis, their persecution of the revolutionary people only serves to accelerate the people’s revolutions on a broader and more intense scale. Did not the persecution of the revolutionary people by the tsar of Russia and by Chiang Kai-shek perform this function in the great Russian and Chinese revolutions?

“Speech at the Meeting of the Supreme Soviet of the U.S.S.R. in Celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution” (November 6, 1957).

U.S. imperialism invaded China’s territory of Taiwan and has occupied it for the past nine years. A short while ago it sent its armed forces to invade and occupy Lebanon. The United States has set up hundreds of military bases in many countries all over the world. China’s territory of Taiwan, Lebanon and all military bases of the United States on foreign soil are so many nooses round the neck of U.S. imperialism. The nooses have been fashioned by the Americans themselves and by nobody else, and it is they themselves who have put these nooses round their own necks, handing the ends of the ropes to the Chinese people, the peoples of the Arab countries and all the peoples of the world who love peace and oppose aggression. The longer the U.S. aggressors remain in those places, the tighter the nooses round their necks will become.

Speech at the Supreme State Conference (September 8, 1958).

Imperialism will not last long because it always does evil things. It persists in grooming and supporting reactionaries in all countries who are against the people, it has forcibly seized many colonies and semi-colonies and many military bases, and it threatens the peace with atomic war. Thus, forced by imperialism to do so, more than 90 per cent of the people of the world are rising or will rise up in struggle against it. Yet imperialism is still alive, still running amuck in Asia, Africa and Latin America. In the West imperialism is still oppressing the people at home. This situation must change. It is the task of the people of the whole world to put an end to the aggression and oppression perpetrated by imperialism, and chiefly by U.S. imperialism.

Interview with a Hsinhua News Agency correspondent (September 29, 1958).

Riding roughshod everywhere, U.S. imperialism has made itself the enemy of the people of the world and has increasingly isolated itself. Those who refuse to be enslaved will never be cowed by the atom bombs and hydrogen bombs in the hands of the U.S. imperialists. The raging tide of the people of the world against the U.S. aggressors is irresistible. Their struggle against U.S. imperialism and its lackeys will assuredly win still greater victories.

“Statement Supporting the Panamanian People’s Just Patriotic Struggle Against U.S. Imperialism” (January 12, 1964), People of the World, Unite and Defeat the U.S. Aggressors and All Their Lackeys,  2nd ed., pp. 9-10.

If the U.S. monopoly capitalist groups persist in pushing their policies of aggression and war, the day is bound to come when they will be hanged by the people of the whole world. The same fate awaits the accomplices of the United States.

Speech at the Supreme State Conference (September 8, 1958).

Over a long period we have developed this concept for the struggle against the enemy: strategically we should despise all our enemies, but tactically we should take them all seriously. This also means that we must despise the enemy with respect to the whole, but that we must take him seriously with respect to each and every concrete question. If we do not despise the enemy with respect to the whole, we shall be committing the error of opportunism. Marx and Engels were only two individuals, and yet in those early days they already declared that capitalism would be overthrown throughout the world. But in dealing with concrete problems and particular enemies we shall be committing the error of adventurism unless we take them seriously. In war, battles can only be fought one by one and the enemy forces can only be destroyed one by one. Factories can only be built one by one. The peasants can only plough the land plot by plot. The same is even true of eating a meal. Strategically, we take the eating of a meal lightly – we know we can finish it. But actually we eat it mouthful by mouthful. It is impossible to swallow an entire banquet in one gulp. This is known as a piecemeal solution. In military parlance, it is called wiping out the enemy forces one by one.

Speech at the Moscow Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties (November 18, 1957).

It is my opinion that the international situation has now reached a new turning point. There are two winds in the world today, the East Wind and the West Wind. There is a Chinese saying, “Either the East Wind prevails over the West Wind or the West Wind prevails over the East Wind.” I believe it is characteristic of the situation today that the East Wind is prevailing over the West Wind. That is to say, the forces of socialism have become overwhelmingly superior to the forces of imperialism.

Ibid.

7. Dare To Struggle And Dare To Win

People of the world, unite and defeat the U.S. aggressors and all their running dogs! People of the world, be courageous, dare to fight, defy difficulties and advance wave upon wave. Then the whole world will belong to the people. Monsters of all kinds shall be destroyed.

“Statement Supporting the People of the Congo (L.) Against U.S. Aggression” (November 28, 1964), People of the World, Unite and Defeat the U.S. Aggressors and All Their Lackeys,  2nd ed., p. 14.

The Communist Party of China, having made a clear-headed appraisal of the international and domestic situation on the basis of the science of Marxism-Leninism, recognized that all attacks by the reactionaries at home and abroad had to be defeated and could be defeated. When dark clouds appeared in the sky, we pointed out that they were only temporary, that the darkness would soon pass and the sun break through.

“The Present Situation and Our Tasks” (December 25, 1947), Selected Military Writings,  2nd ed., p. 347.

Historically, all reactionary forces on the verge of extinction invariably conduct a last desperate struggle against the revolutionary forces, and some revolutionaries are apt to be deluded for a time by this phenomenon of outward strength but inner weakness failing to grasp the essential fact that the enemy is nearing extinction while they themselves are approaching victory.

“The Turning Point in World War II” (October 12, 1942), Selected Works,  Vol. III, p. 103.

If they [the Kuomintang] fight, we will wipe them out completely. This is the way things are: if they attack and we wipe them out, they will havc that satisfaction; wipe out some, some satisfaction; wipe out more, more satisfaction; wipe out the whole lot, complete satisfaction. China’s problems are complicated, and our brains must also be a little complicated. If they start fighting, we fight back, fight to win peace.

“On the Chungking Negotiations” (October 17, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 56.

If anyone attacks us and if the conditions are favourable for battle, we will certainly act in self-defence to wipe him out resolutely, thoroughly, wholly and completely (we do not strike rashly, but when we do strike, we must win). We must never be cowed by the bluster of reactionaries.

“On Peace Negotiations with the Kuomintang – Circular of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China” (August 26, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 49

As far as our own desire is concerned, we don’t want to fight even for a single day. But if circumstances force us to fight, we can fight to the finish.

“Talk with the American Correspondent Anna Louise Strong” (August 1946), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 97.

We are for peace. But so long as U.S. imperialism refuses to give up its arrogant and unreasonable demands and its scheme to extend aggression, the only course for the Chinese people is to remain determined to go on fighting side by side with the Korean people. Not that we are warlike. We are willing to stop the war at once and leave the remaining questions for later settlement. But U.S. imperialism is not willing to do so. All right then, let the fighting go on. However many years U.S. imperialism wants to fight, we are ready to fight right up to the moment when it is willing to stop, right up to the moment of complete victory for the Chinese and Korean peoples.

Speech at the Pourth Session of the First National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (February 7, 1953).

We shouid rid our ranks of all impotent thinking. All views that overestimate the strength of the enemy and underestimate the strength of the people are wrong.

“The Present Situation and Our Tasks” (December 25, 1947), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 173.

The oppressed peoples and nations must not pin their hopes for liberation on the “sensibleness” of imperialism and its lackeys. They will only triumph by strengthening their unity and persevering in their struggle.

“Statement Opposing Aggression Against Southern Vietnam and Slaughter of Its People by the U.S.-Ngo Dinh Diem Clique” (August 29, 1963), People of the World, Unite and Defeat the U.S. Aggressors and All Their Lackeys,  2nd ed., p. 6.

No matter when this country-wide civil war breaks out, we must be well prepared. If it comes early, say, tomorrow morning, we should also be prepared. That is point one. In the present international and domestic situation it is possible that for a time the civil war may be kept restricted in scale and localized. That is point two. Point one is what we should prepare for, point two is what has existed for a long time. In short, we must be prepared. Being prepared, we shall be able to deal properly with all kinds of complicated situations.

“The Situation and Our Policy After the Victory in the War of Resistance Against Japan” (August 13, 1945), Selected Works,  Vol. IV, p. 22.