[This issue of Peking Review is from massline.org. Massline.org has kindly given us permission to to place these documents on the MIA. We made only some formatting changes to make them congruent with our style sheets.]
[This article is reprinted from Peking Review, Vol. 10, #4, Jan. 20,
1967, pp. 15-17. Thanks are due to the WWW.WENGEWANG.ORG
web site for some of the work done for this posting.]
“The golden monkey wrathfully swung his massive cudgel,
GUIDED by the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao Tse-tung, the glorious Shanghai working class has formed a million-strong mighty army of revolutionary rebels. Uniting with other revolutionary organisations, they have been meeting head-on the new counter-attacks by the bourgeois reactionary line, seizing power from the handful of people within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road, and establishing the new order of the great proletarian cultural revolution. With a power as irresistible as that of a sharp knife splitting bamboo, they are pressing forward in triumphant pursuit, sweeping away rubbish that impedes the advance of the wheel of history.
This revolutionary action of the working class and other revolutionary masses and revolutionary cadres in Shanghai marks a new turning point in our country’s great proletarian cultural revolution and the beginning of a new stage in it. This is a great new victory for Mao Tse-tung’s thought.
The revolutionary principle adopted, and the revolutionary actions taken, by the working class and other revolutionary masses and revolutionary cadres in Shanghai have set an example for the whole country and provided invaluable new experience for the great proletarian cultural revolution.
Their experience is many-sided. The focal point is that proletarian revolutionaries have united to seize power from the handful of people within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road, thus taking the political, economic and cultural power of the Shanghai municipality firmly into their own hands.
Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung’s thought, teaches us that the basic question of a revolution is that of political power. The central task of the great proletarian cultural revolution, in the last analysis, is the struggle by which the proletariat seizes power from the handful of people within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road. This is the focal point of the class struggle in our country at the present stage, a concentrated expression of the struggle between the socialist road and the capitalist road.
On June 1, 1966, our great leader Chairman Mao himself made the decision to broadcast the text of a big-character poster from Peking University, the first Marxist-Leninist poster in the country. This was in support of the struggle of the proletarian revolutionaries of Peking University to seize power from the Lu Ping anti-Party clique in the university. It was a great strategic move which kindled the flames of the great proletarian cultural revolution now raging throughout the country.
Now our great leader Chairman Mao himself has decided to broadcast the “Message to All Shanghai People” and the “Urgent Notice” issued by Shanghai’s revolutionary mass organisations. This is in support of the struggle of the working class and other revolutionary masses and revolutionary cadres in Shanghai who united to seize power in the municipality from the handful of people within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road and the extremely small number of diehards who persistently pursue the bourgeois reactionary line. It is yet another great strategic measure taken in the new situation, one which will stimulate a new leap in the great proletarian cultural revolution throughout the country.
Those within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road are just a handful, but in varying degrees they still hold Party, political and financial power in the localities and units where they are entrenched. They always used the power in their hands to attack the masses and undermine the great proletarian cultural revolution.
How do this handful of people use their power to undermine the great proletarian cultural revolution?
They use the Party power in their hands to deceive, hoodwink and repress a number of cadres and Party and Youth League members. They attempt to break down our Party’s extremely strict proletarian discipline which is based on Mao Tse-tung’s thought, that discipline which is essential for the proletariat to defeat the bourgeoisie. They distort our Party’s discipline into bourgeois discipline, into “discipline” to oppose the Party, socialism and Mao Tse-tung’s thought, into “discipline” to resist the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao, turning it into an inhibiting magic phrase to repress the masses and oppose the revolution. They stigmatise whoever opposes them as an “anti-Party” element.
Making use of that portion of political power they exercise in those departments and localities under their control, this handful of persons have practised bourgeois dictatorship to suppress the revolutionary masses wherever they can. They want to brand as a “counter-revolutionary” anyone who rises up and rebels against them and even dismiss or imprison him. They have incited the masses to struggle each other. They have used the slogan “Defend the proletarian dictatorship!” in a distorted way to deceive certain people into establishing under their control such organisations as “the army of defenders of red state power” to protect themselves.
This handful of persons have used the financial power in their hands to get certain befuddled people to protect them. They have used money to buy over people so as to corrupt the revolutionary masses. They have made use of economic measures of all kinds in an attempt to lead some people on to the evil road of economism, of pursuing purely immediate individual interests. They have wanted not only to restore but even to extend some erroneous measures adopted in the past in regard to wage and welfare systems. They have issued cheques and materials freely, in an effort to win the hearts of the people by liberally giving away what belongs to the state. In doing so, they have attempted to sabotage production, finances and communications and transport. They have with ill intentions “submitted the contradictions to their superiors.” This is the current manifestation of the death-bed struggle of the handful of those within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road. It represents a counter-attack in a new form by the bourgeois reactionary line at the present time.
These people have protected this or that old thing of capitalism and revisionism; in the final analysis, they have been protecting their own power. In the face of the pressure from the revolutionary masses, they may make this or that false “concession.” But they do all this in an attempt to hit hard at our dictatorship of the proletariat and preserve their power to suppress the masses. On the question of power, they struggle for every bit of it and never make any concession. They have attempted to take all kinds of measures and schemed to disrupt our socialist national economic life so as to achieve their goal of preserving their own power.
The most fundamental thing in our struggle against this handful of persons is to wrest power from them. Only by seizing their power and exercising dictatorship over them can they be completely refuted, overthrown and utterly discredited.
Chairman Mao teaches us that to wrest power from these persons means the revolution of one class to overthrow another class in the conditions of the dictatorship of the proletariat, i.e., a revolution of the proletariat to liquidate the bourgeoisie.
The struggle between the proletarian revolutionaries and the handful of people within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road is acute, complicated and tortuous. The strongholds in which the counter-revolutionary revisionists are entrenched must be seized, one by one. The positions recovered by the proletariat have yet to be consolidated, one by one.
We must heighten our vigilance against these cunning enemies. Hypocritically, they have raised the flag of “revolution” to wrest power from the proletariat. They are accustomed to fabricating rumours, sowing discord, transposing black and white, confusing right and wrong, and inciting the masses to shift the target of struggle and point the spearhead of attack at revolutionaries, the dictatorship of the proletariat and the revolutionary headquarters of the proletariat. All revolutionary comrades must follow Chairman Mao’s teachings, keep their eyes open, and distinguish between the enemy and ourselves, and between right and wrong on vital questions. Those bad elements who behind our backs stir up the winds of evil and point the spearhead against the dictatorship of the proletariat and the proletarian revolutionary headquarters must be firmly exposed and overthrown, one by one.
The great contribution of the Shanghai working class and other revolutionary masses and revolutionary cadres is that they firmly stand on the side of the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao, fearlessly launched an extensive counter-attack against the new counter-offensive of the bourgeois reactionary line, and gained experience in seizing power from the handful of persons within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road, under the conditions of the dictatorship of the proletariat, and that they have advanced correct principles and policies, correct forms of organisation and correct methods of struggle.
These are the most essential things worth studying by Party, government, army and civilian circles, by workers, peasants revolutionary students, revolutionary intellectuals, and revolutionary cadres throughout the country.
The great revolution in Shanghai is an embodiment of the leading role and the initiative of the working class, their sense of revolutionary organisation and discipline, and it has developed extensive democracy under the dictatorship of the proletariat.
Shanghai’s experience proves that only by seizing power from the handful of persons within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road, and strengthening the dictatorship of the proletariat can extensive proletarian democracy be ensured.
Shanghai’s experience proves that extensive democracy under the dictatorship of the proletariat is absolutely not ultra-democracy nor “small group” mentality [considering only the interests of a small group and ignoring the overall interest -Ed.]. Only by giving effect to democratic centralism and the great unity of proletarian revolutionaries under the banner of Mao Tse-tung’s thought can there be extensive democracy under the dictatorship of the proletariat, can excellent battles be fought with concentrated forces and can new revolutionary order be established.
Shanghai’s experience proves that the principle of “grasping the revolution and promoting production” advanced by the Party Central Committee represented by Chairman Mao must be firmly grasped, that resolute and uncompromising struggles must be waged against all sorts of bourgeois revisionist economism, anarchism, liberalisation, etc., and that the general orientation of socialism must be maintained and socialist ownership must be upheld; only this can be called extensive democracy under the dictatorship of the proletariat.
The purpose of Shanghai’s revolutionary masses in practising extensive democracy under the dictatorship of the proletariat is very clear. It is to arouse the masses to topple the handful of persons within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road, and the ghosts and monsters in society, and uphold and develop the politics, economy and culture of socialism.
The message of greetings sent to the revolutionary rebel organizations in Shanghai by the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party, the State Council, the Military Commission of the Party Central Committee and the Cultural Revolution Group Under the Party Central Committee states: “You have brought about a great alliance of the proletarian revolutionary organizations and become the nucleus uniting all revolutionary forces. You have taken firmly in your hands the destiny of the proletarian dictatorship, the destiny of the great proletraian cultural revolution and the destiny of the socialist economy.” This is a high appraisal of the Shanghai proletarian revolutionaries, as well as a great call to the revolutionary people throughout the country.
The latest counter-attacks by the bourgeois reactionary line do not indicate that this handful of reactionaries are powerful but that they are having fits of hysteria. Such fits merely emphasize the fact that they are on the verge of collapse.
Our dictatorship of the proletariat is strong and firm. We have the powerful People’s Liberation Army which is infinitely loyal to Chairman Mao, loyal to the people. We have hundreds of millions of people armed with Mao Tse-tung’s thought. This is the greatest strength and is capable of vanquishing any enemy.
We must bear in mind this teaching of Chairman Mao’s: “All views that overestimate the strength of the enemy and underestimate the strength of the people are wrong.”
We are facing an excellent situation, full of brightness. We must grasp “the essential fact that the enemy is nearing extinction while they [the revolutionaries] themselves are approaching victory.” Like the revolutionary masses in Shanghai, we must courageously beat back the challenges of the handful of agents of the bourgeoisie. We must dare to struggle and be good at struggle, dare to win victory and be good at winning victory.
Proletarian revolutionaries, unite and rally with the broad masses, and, led by the great supreme commander Chairman Mao, carry on an all-round class struggle throughout the country!
Resolutely carry out the principle of “taking firm hold of the revolution and promoting production” advanced by Chairman Mao!
Crush the latest counter-attacks of the bourgeois reactionary line!
Crush bourgeois economism!
Resolutely seize power from the handful of people within the Party who are in authority and taking the capitalist road!
Long live the dictatorship of the proletariat!
Long live the ever-victorious Mao Tse-tung’s thought!(“Hongqi”, No. 2, 1967.)
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