Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung
[This article was written by Comrade Mao Tse-tung in commemoration of the thirty-first anniversary of the October Revolution for the organ of the Information Bureau of the Communist and Workers' Parties of Europe, For A Lasting Peace, For A People's Democracy. It appeared in the 21st issue of the publication in 1948. ]
At this time, when the awakened working class and all genuine revolutionaries of the world are jubilantly celebrating the thirty-first anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution of the Soviet Union, I recall a well-known article by Stalin, written in 1918 on the first anniversary of that revolution. In that article Stalin said:
The great world-wide significance of the October Revolution chiefly consists in the fact that:
1) It has widened the scope of the national question and converted it from the particular question of combating national oppression in Europe into the general question of emancipating the oppressed peoples, colonies and semi-colonies from imperialism;
2) It has opened up wide possibilities for their emancipation and the right paths towards it, has thereby greatly facilitated the cause of the emancipation of the oppressed peoples of the West and the East, and has drawn them into the common current of the victorious struggle against imperialism;
3) It has thereby erected a bridge between the socialist West and the enslaved East, having created a new front of revolutions against world imperialism, extending from the proletarians of the West, through the Russian revolution, to the oppressed peoples of the East.
History has developed in the direction pointed out by Stalin. The October Revolution has opened up wide possibilities for the emancipation of the peoples of the world and opened up the realistic paths towards it; it has created a new front of revolutions against world imperialism, extending from the proletarians of the West, through the Russian revolution, to the oppressed peoples of the East. This front of revolutions has been created and developed under the brilliant guidance of Lenin and, after Lenin's death, of Stalin.
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 to defeat imperialism and its running dogs. In the more than one hundred years since the birth of Marxism, it was only through the example of the Russian Bolsheviks in leading the October Revolution, in leading socialist construction and in defeating fascist aggression that revolutionary parties of a new type were formed and developed in the world. With the birth of revolutionary parties of this type, the face of the world revolution has changed. The change has been so great that transformations utterly inconceivable to people of the older generation have come into being amid fire and thunder. The Communist Party of China is a party built and developed on the model of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. With the birth of the Communist Party of China, the face of the Chinese revolution took on an altogether new aspect. Is this fact not clear enough?
The world revolutionary united front, with the Soviet Union at its head, defeated fascist Germany, Italy and Japan. This was a result of the October Revolution. If there had been no October Revolution, if there had been no Communist Party of the Soviet Union, no Soviet Union and no anti-imperialist revolutionary united front in the West and in the East led by the Soviet Union, could one conceive of victory over fascist Germany, Italy, Japan and their running dogs? If the October Revolution opened up wide possibilities for the emancipation of the working class and the oppressed peoples of the world and opened up realistic paths towards it, then the victory of the anti-fascist Second World War has opened up still wider possibilities for the emancipation of the working class and the oppressed peoples of the world and has opened up still more realistic paths towards it. It will be a very great mistake to underestimate the significance of the victory of World War II.
Since the victory of World War II, U.S. imperialism and its running dogs in various countries have taken the place of fascist Germany, Italy and Japan and are frantically preparing a new world war and menacing the whole world; this reflects the utter decay of the capitalist world and its fear of imminent doom. This enemy still has strength; therefore, all the revolutionary forces of each country must unite, and the revolutionary forces of all countries must likewise unite, must form an anti-imperialist united front headed by the Soviet Union and follow correct policies; otherwise, victory will be impossible. This enemy has a weak and fragile foundation, he is disintegrating internally, he is alienated from the people, he is confronted with inextricable economic crises; therefore, he can be defeated. It will be a very great mistake to overestimate the enemy's strength and underestimate the strength of the revolutionary forces.
Under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, tremendous victories have now been won in the great Chinese people's democratic revolution directed against the frenzied aggression of U.S. imperialism in China and against the traitorous, dictatorial and reactionary Kuomintang government that has been slaughtering the Chinese people by civil war. During the two years from July 1946 to June 1948, the People's Liberation Army led by the Communist Party of China beat back the attacks of 4,300,000 troops of the reactionary Kuomintang government and went over from the defensive to the offensive. During those two years of fighting (not including developments since July 1948), the People's Liberation Army captured and wiped out 2,640,000 Kuomintang troops. China's Liberated Areas now cover 2,350,000 square kilometres, or 24.5 per cent of the country's 9,597,000 square kilometres; they have a population of 168 million, or 35.3 per cent of the country's 475 million; and they contain 586 cities and towns, or 29 per cent of the 2,009 in the whole country. Because our Party has resolutely led the peasants to carry out the reform of the land system, the land problem has been thoroughly solved in areas with a population of about 100 million, and the land of the landlords and old-type rich peasants has been more or less equally distributed among the peasants, primarily among the poor peasants and farm labourers. The membership of the Communist Party of China has grown from 1,210,000 in 1945 to 3,000,000 today. The task of the Communist Party of China is to unite the revolutionary forces of the whole country to drive out the aggressive forces of U.S. imperialism, overthrow the reactionary rule of the Kuomintang and establish a united, democratic people's republic. We know that there are still many difficulties ahead. But we are not afraid of them. We believe that difficulties must be and can be overcome.
The radiance of the October Revolution shines upon us. The long-suffering Chinese people must win their liberation, and they firmly believe they can. Always isolated in the past, China's revolutionary struggle no longer feels isolated since the victory of the October Revolution. We enjoy the support of the Communist Parties and the working class of the world. This point was understood by Dr. Sun Yat-sen, forerunner of the Chinese revolution, who established the policy of alliance with the Soviet Union against imperialism. On his deathbed he wrote a letter to the Soviet Union as part of his testament. It is the Chiang Kai-shek bandit gang of the Kuomintang that is betraying Sun Yat-sen's policy, standing on the side of the imperialist counter-revolutionary front and opposing the people of their own country. But before long, people will witness the complete destruction of the whole reactionary regime of the Kuomintang by the Chinese people. The Chinese people are brave, so is the Communist Party of China, and they are determined to liberate all China.
1. From "The October Revolution and the National Question", Section III, "The World-wide Significance of the October Revolution", J. V. Stalin, Works, Eng. ed., Moscow, 1953, Vol. IV, pp. 169-70.
Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung