Deng Xiaoping

In Celebration of the Fiftieth Birthday of Comrade Liu Bocheng


Published: December 15, 1942
Translated by: Unknown
Source: Deng Xiaoping Works
Transcription for MIA: Joonas Laine


A deep love for his country, his people and his own Party is essential for a Communist Party member. Comrade Bocheng not only possesses this love, but has devoted all his energy to the country, the people and his own Party. During his 30-year revolutionary career he has ignored all matters concerning his own life and death, honour and disgrace, as well as his health, and has never taken a day free from work. He has been assigned many very arduous and dangerous revolutionary tasks and has managed to surmount all difficulties in accomplishing them. He has suffered wounds in at least nine places for the sake of the liberation of the country and the people. He is so dedicated to the country, the people’s well-being and the Party’s cause that he has simply neglected everything else. He has made indelible contributions during the entire course of the revolution.

I became acquainted with Comrade Bocheng in 1931, when we were working in the Central Soviet Area in Jiangxi Province. Later we both took part in the Long March. We became partners after the outbreak of the anti-Japanese war, and over the last five years we have been living and working together. We share the same feelings and co-operate closely with each other. Of course, there are times when we disagree, but neither of us stubbornly clings to his own opinion. We always work together according to the opinion that seems most correct, no matter whose it happens to be. We hear from time to time that when some comrade or another is having disputes out of spite against his superiors, subordinates or peers, he always believes he is right and the others wrong and is always trying to overwhelm others, posing as a hero or “king of the mountain”. As a result, his mistake harms the Party and impairs its work. If the comrade was always acting in the interest of the country, the people and the Party, instead of seeking his own honour or promotion, how could he make such a mistake? Comrade Bocheng constantly persuades and educates other comrades in this spirit.

Comrade Bocheng works conscientiously to fulfil the tasks assigned him. I shall mention only some examples from the last five years, since there is no need to repeat the earlier ones. He has persevered as ordered behind enemy lines in the anti-Japanese war. He has always acted in conformity with the Three People’s Principles, the Programme of Armed Resistance and National Reconstruction and the Party’s policies, never going a step beyond. He has never been careless in carrying out orders and instructions from higher authorities; he has always read and considered them over and over again before carrying them out under his working circumstances. Moreover, he has regularly conducted checks on their thorough implementation. You could almost say “Dive deep to the bottom of the sea” is his daily advice to the comrades.

Comrade Bocheng loves our compatriots. Whenever he heard of the enemy’s crimes of raping, looting, burning and killing, he would fly into a rage; when he was informed that the enemy was press-ganging able-bodied men, he immediately wrote out a directive to protect them; when he learned that the enemy was looting the people’s grain, he immediately began considering methods for protecting it; when he was told that the enemy had set fire to houses, he promptly called for the digging of caves to solve the housing problem; when he learned that some comrades were indifferent to the interests of the masses, he reproached them by phone or telegram without delay. Not long ago he found that a road outside a village had been ruined by flooding and people had to walk across a wheat field. He immediately had it repaired, saving the wheat field. This sort of thing is a common occurrence. Not only has he led troops in thousands of bloody battles, large or small, to protect the country’s territory and the people’s lives and property, but in everyday life he has also exhibited a Party member’s true love for the country and the people.

Comrade Bocheng loves his comrades, always giving them systematic guidance and earnest instructions, and encouraging them to achieve progress. He spends a lot of time talking with other comrades. Even when he finds a character written incorrectly, he helps to correct it. Tens of thousands of cadres have benefited from his help.

Comrade Bocheng is a fine example of a tireless reader. He not only pays close attention to theoretical study, but also pays particular attention to combining theory with practice. He has often advised the comrades to learn from the rank and file and from the masses, as he himself has been doing.

Comrade Bocheng has so many admirable traits for us to emulate that the ones I have mentioned are only like a branch or a leaf of the tree. His exemplary actions, moral qualities and great contributions cannot be fully covered in a short essay.

People may ask whether Comrade Bocheng has any shortcomings. I think he has only one, that is, he allows himself no time for recreation outside of reading and working. He has no bad habits like smoking or drinking, and he doesn’t even know how to play chess or ball games. In his leisure time he just takes walks or chats with people. He often criticizes himself for being too “grudging” with his time. Is this really his shortcoming — or is it just the cause for his comrades’ concern for his health?

On the occasion of Comrade Bocheng’s fiftieth birthday, I wish him good health and success in the cause for which we are working hard together.

(Carried in the special issue of the north China edition of Xinhua Daily, December 15, 1942.)