Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung
July 28, 1968
[SOURCE: Long Live Mao Tse-tung Thought, a Red Guard Publication.]
Chairman: (Nieh Yuan tzu, T’an Hou-lan, Han A’i-ching and Wang Ta-ping walked into the room. The Chairman, standing, shook hands with each one of them) All are young!
(Shaking hands with Huang Tso-chen) Are you Huang Tso-chen? I haven’t met you before. You were not killed?
Chiang Ch’ing: Haven’t seen you for a long time. You didn’t post big character posters.
Chairman: We met last time at Tien-an-men, but there was no chance to talk with you at that time. That was bad! You people don’t come to see me unless you have important business. But I have read all of your reports. I understand your situation very well.
K’uai Ta-fu did not come. Is it because he is unable to come or unwilling to come?
Fu-chih: I am afraid that he is unwilling to come.
Han A’i-ching: No. At this moment, if he knew that there was a meeting with the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group, he would cry because he missed the chance to meet the Chairman. I am sure that he is unable to come.
Chairman: K’uai Ta-fu should capture the black hand. So many workers were sent to schools to “suppress” and “oppress” the red guards. Who is the black hand? The black hand is still not captured.
The black hand is nobody else but me. K’uai did not come. He should have come to grab me. It was I who sent the Central Police Guards and the workers of the Hsin-hua Printing Plant and the General Knitwear Mill. I asked them how they would deal with the fighting in universities, and told them to go there to take a look. As a result, 30,000 of them went. Actually, they hated Peking University, but not Tsinghua. (Turned to Nieh) This was what the workers and the students did. Tens of thousands of them staged a demonstration. I heard that the reception you gave them was pretty good. Was it you, or Ching-kang-shan?
(Wen Yu-ch’eng, Huang Tso-chen: Not them). With what unit did Peking University clash?
Nieh Yuan-tzu: With the Institute of Agricultural Science.
Chairman: Did you fight them?
Nieh Yuan-tzu: We even served tea in front of our gate.
Chairman: I did not know that. Peking University wants to arrest the black hand. This black hand is not me, but Hsieh Fu-chih. I didn’t have such a big ambition. I suggested only that a few people be sent over to have a discussion with them. K’uai Ta-fu said that 100,000 of them went.
Fu-chih: Less than 30,000.
Chairman: How did you deal with armed fighting in universities? One way is complete withdrawal. Leave the students alone. Let everybody fight if he wants to. In the past, the revolutionary committees and the garrison commands were not afraid of the chaos caused by the fighting in universities. They refrained from control anxiety, and suppression. In retrospect, this is right. The other way is to give them a little help. This has won the support of the workers, the peasants, and the majority of students. There are more than 50 institutions of higher learning in Peking There are about five or six of them where the fighting was severe, and where your ability was put to the test. As to how to solve the problem, some of you live in the south, and some of you live in the north. And all of you are called new Peking University, “Ching-kang-shan,” and “commune,” just like the Soviet Communist party calling itself “Bolshevik.” If you cannot handle the problem, we may resort to military control, and ask Lin Piao to take command. We also have Huang Yung-shen. The problem has to be solved one way or the other. You people have engaged in the Great Cultural Revolution or struggle-criticism-transformation for two years. Now, in the first place, you are not struggling; in the second place, you are not criticizing, in the third place, you are not transforming. Yes, you are struggling, but it is armed struggle. The people are not happy. The workers are not happy. The peasants are not happy. Peking residents are not happy. The students in most of the schools are not happy. Most students in your school are also not happy. Even within the faction that supports you there are people who are unhappy. Can you unite the whole country this way? You belong to the new Peking University. You “Old Buddha” are in the majority. You are a philosopher. Don’t tell me that there is nobody against you in the new Peking ! University commune and among the cultural revolutionaries in the schools. I don’t believe that! They may not say anything in front of you, but they will say devilish words behind your back. Wang Ta-ping, is your work easier?
Wang Ta-ping: Those who opposed Hsieh Fu-chih fled.
Fu-chih: His second man in command wanted to seize power, and accused him of leaning toward the right.
Chairman: Is he that left?
Wang Ta-ping: They are trying to sow discord in our relationship. He is a good comrade, with a good background. He suffered greatly and has deep hatred. This man is very straight forward, and full of energy for revolution, with a strong revolutionary character. His only drawback is his impatience. He is not very tactful in uniting people. His working method is a little stiff.
Chairman: Can you unite with him? He is left; you are right. It should be easy for you two to be united! Come over here, sit by my side!
Lin Piao: Come over!
Fu-chih: Go! Go! (Wang Ta-ping sat down by the side of the Chairman.)
Chairman: Sit down, sit down. We should be flexible in these matters. After all, they are all students. They did not engage in black gang activities. Recently, struggles were conducted against black gangsters in some schools, and sketches of these black gangsters were drawn. Several tens of them were dealt with in the new Peking University. Is that all the black gangsters? I think there are more. The crucial point is that the two factions are engaged in armed struggle. They were bent on armed struggle. This kind of struggle-criticism-transformation does not work. Maybe, struggle-criticism-quit will. The students are talking about struggle-criticism-quit; or struggle-criticism-disperse. Now there are so many people who are aloof and indifferent. More and more derogatory words are heard in society about Nieh Yan-tzu and K’uai Ta-fu. Nieh Yuan tzu’s cannon fodder is limited in number; so is K’uai Ta-fu’s. Sometimes 300; other times 150 men. How can that be compared with the number of troops under Lin Piao and Huang Yung-sheng. This time, in one shot, I dispatched 30,000.
Lin Piao: During the development of all significant events in the world, there is unity after long disunity, and disunity after long unity. Tear down all the defence works for armed struggle. All the hot weapons, cold weapons, knives, and rifles should be put in storage. Nieh Yuan-tzu, they call you “Old Buddha,” or the “Old Nest of Buddha.” Moreover, we have you Comrade T’an Hou-lan, wearing two pigtails. You asked for a transfer down to lower levels. You have spent more than 10 years studying in schools. Everybody agrees that you should be transferred down. I am afraid that you cannot leave. Once you are gone, who is going to take your place?
T’an Hou-lan: Everything has been arranged.
Chairman: Your five great generals, we support you, including K’uai Ta-fu who wants to grab the black hand. We have our prejudices. The “Peking University” ‘Ching-kang-shan’ and the ‘April 14’ Army Corps at Normal University may have adverse opinions about us. I’m not afraid of being overthrown by others. When the ‘April 14’ Army Corps at Tsinghua said that the ‘April 14’ thinking must win, I was unhappy. They also said that those who won the country cannot rule it, and that the proletariat which won the country cannot rule it. “April 14” has a theoretician by the name of Chou Ch’uan-ying. Why should we arrest a theoretician? He is a theoretician for a school of thought. He writes articles. Why should you arrest him? Release him. He has his opinion. Let him write again! Otherwise, there will be no freedom. I say, you, Old Buddha, had better be a little more generous. There are several thousand men at Peking University’s ‘Ching-kang-shan’. If they were released like a torrential flood, they will wash the Dragon King’s Temple away. Can you take it? Otherwise, you Old Buddha we have to impose military control. The third method is to handle this matter according to the principles of dialectics. Don’t live in one city. Separate. Either you or ‘Ching-kang-shan’ move to the south. If one is in the south and the other in the north, you won’t see each other. You cannot fight. Each one puts his own house in order, and then the entire world will be united. Otherwise, you will be afraid. If they launch an attack on the nest of Old Buddha, you won’t be able to sleep. You’ll be afraid. They will be afraid, too. It is necessary to hold back a little. Why should you be so tense? You are afraid of others attacking you. If you don’t reserve some strength for the future, what are you going to do when they attack? I heard that there is a man who wants to assa! ssinate you. Even though you know who the would-be assassin is, you don’t have to arrest him. Let him go. Don’t say anything even if you know exactly who he is. But from now on you should pay attention to one thing. Don’t go anywhere alone.
Chiang Ch’ing: She has bodyguards.
Nieh Yuan-tzu: No.
Chairman: Your elder brother is no good. Neither is your elder sister. In short, the Nieh family is no good. After all, a bad elder brother is still an elder brother, a bad elder sister is still an elder sister. Why should they get the younger sister involved? (Somebody reported that he could not find K’uai Ta-fu).
Chiang Ch’ing: Is K’uai Ta-Fu unwilling to come, or unable to come?
Fu chih: We broadcast an announcement saying that K’uai Ta-fu is wanted by the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group to attend a meeting. He is just unwilling to come.
Chiang Ch’ing: Is he unwilling to come, or unable to come?
Fu-chih: I guess that he is under someone’s control. It doesn’t matter if he is.
Wen-yuan: Quite possible.
Chairman: I think K’uai Ta-fu is a good man. He is quite exposed. Those who control him are bad people. K’uai Ta-fu and those who are exposed are good men. I have a lot of experience in this respect. Wang Ta-ping, is there any fighting in your place?
Wang Ta-ping: No. On 23 September 1966, we had a fight with the conservative faction. It was Comrade [Ch’en] Po-ta who sent men to our rescue. Then we won.
Chairman: That’s good. From then on, neither you nor Han A’i-ching have engaged in fighting. Han A’i-ching, you are very good at giving advice and are a strategist. Are you a descendant of Han Hsin?
K’ang Sheng: I heard that K’uai Ta-fu is the commander, and Han A’i-ching is the political commissar.
Han A’i-ching: K’uai Ta-fu is surrounded by a group of people with complicated backgrounds. Now, people who gained their stature by writing big character posters at the beginning of the movement are very few. The number of people who engage in armed fighting has increased. They want the headquarters reorganized. K’uai Ta-fu is unable to control any more.
K’ang Sheng: The situation may not be what you have just said!
Chairman: T’an Hou-lan, the cultural revolution has been going on for two years now. The members of your 100-200 man army corps are unable to sleep peacefully at night. For the time being, you cannot leave because you are the queen. Here among the four of you attending this meeting, two are women. It is great! I think you cannot leave for the time being. You have to provide them with food and freedom of movement. They are in a sad plight, and yet they want to seize power. Other schools have also participated. You (pointing to Han) and K’uai Ta-fu have played a role.
Han A’i-ching: I also participated.
Chiang Ch’ing: Han A’i-ching wanted to topple others.
Chairman: You played a role. Our Commander, K’uai Ta-fu, also played a part. Young people should do good things, but they are also capable of doing bad things. You said that the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group did not notify you. Comrade Lin Piao and Premier Chou spoke on 23 and 27 March, respectively, and a rally of 100,000 people was held. This time both Comrades Huang Tso-chen and Wen Yu-ch’eng spoke, but fighting still went on at the lower level, as though this was done deliberately in opposition to us. First of all, we want cultural struggle, not armed struggle. If you want to fight, it is all right. The more you fight, the bigger the fighting becomes. Both sides have native guns. What kind of fighting is yours! Your fighting is nothing. Take out the carbines, rifles, native guns, and even anti-aircraft guns like in Szechwan.
Chiang Ch’ing: Disgrace to the family.
Chairman: With so much magic power, you, Old Buddha, can only activate something like 200-300 men. Where are your troops? You still have to rely on workers and demobilized soldiers as the main force. Without them you cannot succeed. Comrade Lin Piao has lots of troops. If he gives you a few thousand, or a few tens of thousand, it should be enough for you to eliminate “Ching-kang-shan” entirely. But this is not the answer. Let us have some discussion, or call a meeting to discuss this matter. But, first of all, you should get united.
Lin Piao: Unity comes first. The Chairman mentioned four plans. The first is military control. The second is one divides into two. The third is to follow the steps of “struggle-criticism-quit.” The fourth is to fight on a big scale.
Chairman: One divides into two. Both sides are very tense and restless because of hatred. Moving and relocation is a problem. Quarrels will occur if both sides are in Peking. This auditorium is empty; Chung-nan-hai is a big place capable of accommodating 40,000-50,000 people. Is it not big enough for a school? Either Nieh Yuan-tzu or Hou Han-ch’ing (one of the leaders of Peking University’s Ching-kang-shan) should move here.
You people were talking about “killing the cow, slaughtering the monkey and stewing the mutton.” [Chinese character for cow is pronounced niu; Chinese character for monkey is pronounced hou; and Chinese characters for mutton are pronounced yang-jou.] The cow is Niu Hui-lin, the monkey is Hou Han-ch’ing, and mutton is Yang K’o-ming. Of these three, I know only Yang K’o-ming. He is also a young man. He attended the 11th plenum of the 8th Central Committee. That big character poster was done with Yang K’o-ming’s help. Your big-character poster represents two factions. This kind of social phenomenon does not change according to man’s will. Nobody foresaw this kind of fighting. Suspension of classes for half a year was originally planned. It was so announced in the newspaper. Later, the suspension was extended to one year. As one year was not enough, it was extended to two years, and then, to three years. I say, if three years are still not enough, give them as many years as necessary. After all, people are growing older every year. Suppose you were a freshman three years ago, you are now a junior. The schools may be suspended for another two, four, or eight years, you get promoted all the same, so what. . .
Struggle-criticism-quit is also a way out. Is it true that T’an Hou-lan wanted to quit? Let everybody quit; sweep everyone out. Should we continue to run universities? Should universities continue to enrol new students? To stop enrolling new students does not work, either. I put some reservations in my remarks. I said that we should continue to run universities. I mentioned science and engineering colleges, but I did not say that all liberal arts colleges should be closed. But if liberal arts colleges are unable to show any accomplishments, they should be closed. As far as I can see, the basic courses in junior and senior middle schools and the last two years in primary school are about the same as those offered by colleges. One should only go to school for six years, at most ten years. The courses given in senior middle school repeat those in junior middle school, and those courses given in college repeat those given in senior middle school. All basic courses are repetitious. As to courses of specialization, even the teachers don’t understand. Philosophers are unable to talk philosophy. What is there to learn in school? Nieh Yuan-tzu, you are a philosopher, are you?
Nieh Yuan-tzu: No, I am not a philosopher.
Chiang Ch’ing: She is an Old Buddha.
Chairman: What is the use of studying philosophy? Can one learn philosophy in college? If one has never been a worker or a peasant and goes to study philosophy, what kind of philosophy is that?
Lin Piao: The more one studies, the narrower one’s mind gets. It is called “tse-hsueh” (“narrow study”). [Philosophy is “che-hsueh,” “Tse” and “Che” are almost homonyms.]
Chairman: How about studying literature? One should not study the history of literature. Instead, he should learn to write novels. Write a novel for me each week. If he is unable to produce, send him to a factory to work as an apprentice. During his apprenticeship, he should write about his experience as an apprentice. Those who study literature nowadays are unable to write. Hu Wan-ch’un of Shanghai used to write a lot, but after a while I saw little of his work.
Premier: There is also Kao Yu-pao. He also went to college. Then his brain petrified.
Chairman: Let me talk with you about Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin. Marx and Lenin finished their college education, but not Engels and Stalin. Lenin studied law for one year. Engels went to college for one and a half years. Before finishing high school, he was asked by his father to work as an accountant in a factory. Then the factory moved to England. It was in the factory that he came into contact with the workers. How did Engels learn natural science? He did it in a London library, where he stayed eight years. He had never gone to college. Stalin had never gone to college, either. He was a graduate of a missionary high school. Gorky had only two years of formal education in primary school, even less than Chiang Ch’ing. Chiang Ch’ing is a primary school graduate. She had six years of schooling, Gorky had only two.
Yeh Ch’un: Comrade Chiang Ch’ing studied very hard by herself. . .
Chairman: Don’t brag for her. Knowledge is not gained in schools. When I was in school, I did not obey the rules. My principle was just to avoid getting myself dismissed. As to examinations, my marks hovered between 50 or 60 percent and 80 percent, 70 percent being my average. There were several courses that I gave up. I was unable to cope with several subjects, sometimes on purpose. During examinations in such courses, I turned in a piece of blank paper. For geometry, I drew an egg. Is it not a geometrical shape? I turned in the paper the fastest because it took only one stroke.
Lin Piao: I studied for four years in a middle school but I left before graduation. It was a voluntary withdrawal. Without a middle school diploma, I worked as a primary school teacher. However, I liked to study by myself.
Chairman: The military schools nowadays are very harmful. Do you know how long it took one to finish at Whampoa Military Academy? Three months, six months!
Lin Piao: For the first three classes, it was three months. Starting with the fourth class, it took longer.
Chairman: All that is needed is a little training. As to knowledge, it is not much except for some military drill.
Lin Piao: The point is: as soon as you learn something, you forget. Things learned in school in several weeks can be seen clearly in the army in a few days. Hearing about something a hundred times is not as good as seeing it once.
Chairman: I have never attended any military school. Nor have I read a book on military strategy. People say I relied on “Romance of Three Kingdoms” and “Military Strategy of Sun Tzu” for my military campaigns. I said that I had never read “Military Strategy of Sun Tzu.” Yes, I have read “Romance of Three Kingdoms.”
Lin Piao: At one time, you asked me to get a copy [of “Military Strategy of Sun Tzu”]. I was unable to get it for you.
Chairman: During the meeting of Tsun-i, I debated with X X X. He asked me whether I had read “Military Strategy of Sun Tzu.” I asked him: how many chapters are there in the “Military Strategy of Sun Tzu”? He did not know. I asked him what is the title of Chapter One? He did not know, either. Later, when I wrote about what I called problems of strategy, I went over the “Military Strategy of Sun Tzu” roughly.
Chiang Ch’ing. . . .
Chairman: What is military strategy? Who studied English? “Ah te-mierh” is military strategy. It is good to know English. I studied foreign languages late in my life. I suffered. One has to learn foreign languages when one is young. T’an Hou-lan, what foreign language do you study? (The Chairman asked each one present the same question. Wang Ta-ping said he is studying Russian.) One cannot study geology without a foreign language. It is good to learn English. Foreign language study should be started in primary school.
Han A’i-ching: After the cultural revolution is over, Mr. Chairman, please send me to the army to be a soldier.
Chairman: It is enough to be a soldier for half a year. What is the use of being a soldier too long? Half a year is adequate. Serve as a farmer for a year, and then a worker for two years. That’s real college education. The real universities are the factories and rural areas. Comrade Lin Piao may be regarded as an intellectual because he has attended middle school. What kind of intellectuals are Huang Yung-sheng and Wen Yu-ch’eng? They are country folks. Comrade Huang Yung-sheng, how many years did you attend school?
Huang Yung-sheng: One year and a half. .
Chairman: What is the background of your family?
Huang Yung-sheng: Lower-middle peasant.
Chairman: Wen Yu-ch’eng, how many years did you go to school?
Wen Yu-ch’eng: Three years.
Chairman: What is the background of your family?
Wen Yu ch’eng Poor peasant.
Chairman: All are native folks with so little knowledge. With that little knowledge, Huang Yung-sheng can be the Chief of Staff. Can you believe it?
Lin Piao: There was an X X X from Whampoa Military Academy. Chiang Kai-shek gave him a watch as an award. Later, in Nanking, he could not give a good account of himself in fighting.
Yeh Ch’un: He was against the Chairman.
Chairman: What’s good about it if you are not opposed by anybody in this world? Let them oppose me.
Lin Piao: X X X scored 5 in many subjects at the Nanking Military Academy, but he could not fight.
Chairman: Struggle-criticize-disband is also a way out. This is the way T’an Hou-lan is going to take. Isn’t T’an Hou-lan thinking of quitting? I did not say that we should not run liberal arts colleges, but we have to change our methods. Those who study literature should be able to write novels, poems, and songs. Those who study philosophy should be able to write essays, and discuss the course of China’s revolutionary struggle. As to law, I think it is better not to study it at all. I heard that the T’ien (sky) faction is against Hsieh Fu-chih. This matter came to an end without any conclusion. The T’ien faction is no longer against anybody. “Smash the public prosecution law, smash Hsieh Fu-chih.” Actually, Hsieh Fu-chih was the first one who proposed the smashing of the public prosecution law. Out of 30,000 people, the Peking Public Security Bureau picked only several hundred or several tens of landlords, rich peasants, counter-revolutionaries, and rightists. Thus, the smashing of the public prosecution law was proposed. As a consequence, out of 30,000 people, only several tens were retained, and the rest were sent to study classes. You also used the slogan that Hsieh Fu-chih belongs to the Central Committee, and therefore must be overthrown. Then you arrested people in hurried ways. The People’s Congress and the Three-Red General Headquarters kept quiet, but put up big character posters agitating for the overthrow of Hsieh Fu-chih in the name of a small combat unit. When we proceeded to investigate this matter, they said: “We of the General Headquarters did not say overthrow Hsieh Fu-chih; only a small combat unit did.” They want to overthrow Chao Kuei-lin. I don’t know Chao Kuei-lin, but I have read that little information you have about him. How counter-revolutionary is he? Nieh Yuan-tzu, you haven’t said that Hou Han-ching is a counter-revolutionary, have you?
Nieh Yuan-tzu: They organized a reactionary bloc, viciously attacking Chairman Mao and Vice Chairman Lin.
Chairman: It does not matter if people like us are being accused or despised by others. The Niu Hui-lin (one of the leaders of Peking University’s ‘Ching-kang-shan’) affair was not handled right. It was not a grave political problem.
Law does not have to be negated. The Academy of Political Science and Law, the Political and Judicial Commune, and the Political and Judicial Army Corps may not be happy when they hear this. Reduce the time for legal investigation; let the workers and peasants do the job.
At An-shan Steel Mill, there was a case which needed inquiry and investigation. The case was left with the masses. They were fast in gathering information. Cases which had been pending for years were quickly brought to a solution. Before the trials, the public security bureau had no other way but to beat people. The information they obtained was inaccurate.
Members of the Military Control Commission are nothing but soldiers. Wen Yu-ch’eng does not know many people. Would it work. . . if we depend on their detection and investigation? We should say that we must learn from the masses. First, don’t kill. Second, don’t sentence people to long terms. Two to three years are enough. In the past, there was solitary confinement in the army. Do you still have this kind of punishment? Do you still arrest deserters?
Wen Yu-ch’eng: Solitary confinement is abolished. Deserters are no longer arrested.
Chairman: People want to desert. What is the use of bringing them back? Struggle-criticize-quit. If they want to quit, let them go. Why do they want to quit? Simply because they don’t feel comfortable after they are targets of struggle and criticism, or they are beaten. Or they have to attend to family matters. Or they cannot endure army life. Compared with the past, the number of deserters has become smaller after we stopped arresting deserters and abolished solitary confinement. We are the People’s Liberation Army. Now in schools, the arrested are treated like prisoners of war, subjected to coercion and forced to make confessions. If one refuses to confess, he is beaten until he is injured or dead. I think the intellectuals are most un-civilized. I think the unsophisticated soldiers are most civilized. Huang Yung-sheng and Wen Yu-ch’eng don’t arrest deserters, nor do they punish people by solitary conferment. Now a new kind of punishment called “jet plane ride” is invented. I am the guilty one. In the “Report on An Investigation of The Peasant Movement in Honan,” I talked about “parading people on the street in dunce hats,” but I did not mention “jet plane ride.” I am the arch-criminal with inescapable responsibilities!
How about today? Do you think that you are being arrested here to be placed in solitary confinement? The method used by ‘Ching-Kang-shan’ is not good. I mean Commander K’uai’s ‘Ching-kang-shan’. Four people were killed and 50 at the General Knitwear Mill were wounded. Had it not been for the social effect, the loss was a minimum, very minimum.
Lin Piao: It was worth it; the loss was at a minimum.
Premier: Vice-Chairman Lin has put it very well. The loss was very minimum, and the achievement was maximum.
Chairman: In the future, if the workers go to your place, you should welcome them. Don’t use K’uai Ta-fu’s method.
Premier: In the second half of 1966, you went to the factories for liaison work, they welcomed you, and did not beat you up.
Chairman: Let them do their propaganda. Don’t open fire. They are workers sent by the Party Central Committee. Didn’t we say that the working class is the leading class? Didn’t we say ours is a dictatorship by the working class? They are to dictate over a few bad people in the schools. You are well known people. You can dictate bad people in schools, but you cannot dictate the workers. This includes Commander K’uai.
Now there are many inter-group meetings going on at Tsinghua University, Peking Aeronautical Institute, and Ho-ping-li. Numerous people are from other provinces, including such units as “April 22” of Kwangsi, “Oppose to the End” of Szechuan, “August 31” of Liaoning, the “Messy” faction of Chin-chou, the “Flag” faction of Kwangtung. . . Stop all these.
Lin Piao: They started all these meetings before we can convene the Ninth Party Congress.
Premier: We haven’t even convened the 12th plenum of the [8th] Central Committee.
Chairman: Don’t mention the 12th plenum. Everything is topsy-turvy. People are saying the “social struggle is a reflection of the struggle within the Party Central Committee.” It is not that social struggle is a reflection of the Party Central Committee. Rather, the struggle within the party Central Committee is a reflection of social struggle.
Premier: A national defence system meeting was held at Peking Aeronautical Institute. Is it true?
Han A’i ching: They did not dare call that meeting.
Premier: Don’t call that meeting. You know that; it is a national defence secret.
Chairman: Why didn’t I invite your opponents to come here? I invited you to come over today to talk about this matter so that you will be prepared. I have never made any tape recordings before, but I am doing it today. Otherwise, you will interpret what I said today in the way you wish after you go home. If you do so, I will play this tape back. You had better discuss this. Once I play this recording, many people will be put in a defensive position.
Despite the fact that so many days were spent and so many meetings held, despite a talk with Huang Tso-chen, and despite our effort to look for K’uai Ta-fu, you insist on asking the Central Committee to express its attitude. At the beginning, the Central Committee interfered a little. Later on, it was too busy to bother about this. In Peking, we have Hsieh Fu chih in charge. In the past when you were called in for meetings, I never attended, nor did Comrade Lin Piao. We are behaving like bureaucrats now! This time I am afraid that you will expel me from the party because of my bureaucratic behavior. Besides, I am also the black hand that suppressed the Red Guards.
Lin Piao: Yesterday, I drove around to take a look at some of the big character posters. I asked why there were no big character posters put out by Peking or Tsinghua Universities. People said that they were engaged in armed struggle. I would say that you are isolated from the masses who are clamouring for an end to your armed fighting.
Chairman: The masses just don’t like civil wars.
Lin Piao: You have isolated yourselves from the workers, peasants, and soldiers.
Chairman: Some people say that public notices issued in Kwangsi are applicable only in Kwangsi, and public notices issued in Shensi are applicable only in Shensi. Now, I am issuing a nation-wide notice. If anyone continues to oppose, fight the Liberation Army, destroy means of transportation, kill people, or set fires, he is committing crimes. Those few who turn a deaf ear to persuasion and persist in their behaviour are bandits, or Kuomintang elements, subject to capture. If they continue to resist, they will be annihilated.
Lin Piao: There are real rebel groups. Some of them are bandits and Kuomintang elements who are using our flag for rebellion. In Kwangsi, 1,000 houses have been burned down.
Chairman: Make it clear in the notice and explain clearly to the students that if they persist and do not change, they are subject to arrest. This is for light cases. In serious cases, they are subject to capture and elimination.
Lin Piao: In Kwangsi 1,000 houses were burned down, and nobody was allowed to put out the fire.
Chairman: Wasn’t the Kuomintang just like this? This is the kind of desperate struggle on the part of the class enemy before his death. Burning houses is a grave error.
Lin Piao: On my expedition in Kwangsi, I fought with Pai Ch’ung-hsi. He used this tactic. He set fire to houses and tried to make believe that it was the Communists who set fire to them. The same old tactic is being used again.
Han A’i-ching: K’uai Ta-fu is riding on the back of a tiger from which he cannot get down.
Kang Sheng: It is not the kind of situation as you say.
Chairman: If he cannot get off the back of the tiger, then let me kill the tiger.
Premier: The fellows from Kwangsi are in your Peking Aeronautical Institute. How did you call members of the national defense and scientific committee to attend the meeting?
Chairman: You hide the “April 22” of Kwangsi. The students from Kwangsi are living at the Peking Aeronautical Institute.
Kang Sheng: They wish to control the movement all over the country.
Han A’i-ching: We did not call that meeting. You may investigate. It was called by Wu Chuan-pin of Kwangtung. I was sick at that time, and lived in the School of Physical Education before I was admitted to a hospital. A telephone call came from the school, asking me to greet two standing members of the provincial revolutionary committee. Others are saying “Up there is heaven; down there is the Peking Aeronautical institute.” I did not enthusiastically receive the leaders of the ‘May 4 Students’ Congress’, and those of the rebel factions from other provinces. We were criticized for conceit and self-complacency. They also said that we are rich peasants, not revolutionaries any more. Then I started giving them better reception. When we saw them off, they wanted to call a meeting to discuss the national situation. I told them that if they call such a meeting in Peking, it would be an illegal meeting. In Peking, there is a sky faction and an earth faction. The situation is very complicated. I agreed to have a chat with a few leaders of rebel factions and the responsible persons of revolutionary committees without going into any specific measures. K’uai and I went to those talks. Then, I was admitted to the hospital. Everybody felt that things went wrong as soon as the meeting was started. The representatives from the geology college stopped attending the meeting after they attended the preparatory meeting. K’uai Ta-fu ran away from the meeting after listening for a few minutes. The representatives of ‘Ching-kang-shan’ were also scared, and ran away. Information from my schoolmates came to me one after another. Before we could rush in our reports, heaven knows, we were criticized.
Kang Sheng, Wen-yuan: . . . .
Chairman: You talk too much about Han A’i ching. She is only 23 years old.
Chiang Ch’ing: At the beginning of the movement, both Peking University and Peking Aeronautical Institute entertained visitors from other places, and did a lot of work together. In fact, we did ask you to do so. Now the situation has changed. It must be recognized that we should not do this any more because what they are opposing are their respective provincial revolutionary committees and the People’s Liberation Army. T’an Hou-lan, who saved the day for you in the “September 7” affair?
T’an Hou-lan: Chairman Mao, the Central Committee, and the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group.
Fu-chih: It was Comrade Chiang Ch’ing.
Chiang Ch’ing: I don’t particularly like the army corps of Normal University. But, the weather is so hot, you cut off their water, electricity, and food supply. They were not allowed to see daylight for three months during the summer. How could you have done this? As I heard this, I could not help crying. There were hundreds or tens of them. After all, they are the masses. . . Han A’i-ching was wrong at the very beginning. She wanted to topple others.
Han A’i-ching: I was wrong.
Chairman: It sounds a little bit like anarchism. In this world, anarchism is relative to government. As long as there is government, anarchism cannot be eliminated. This is what we used to say: the punishment of right opportunism is punishment of right opportunism of the Central Committee.
Chiang Ch’ing: I have no friendly feelings toward your opposition. It is said that the army corps is against us. I am not talking on their behalf, but you might as well release them! Proletarians should observe proletarian humanitarianism. These several tens of counter-revolutionaries are, after all, youths. They want to strangle me to death. I am not afraid of being fried in oil. I heard that ‘Ching-kang-shan’ of Peking University wants to fry Chiang Ch’ing.
Wen-yuan: Frying is but a way of speech.
Chairman: There is hope. Strangle K’uai Ta-fu to death, so they say.
Fu chih: Niu Hui-lin is bad.
Chiang Ch’ing: Niu Hui-lin may have some problems, but he can be educated. Nieh Yuan-tzu, do I still have some right to speak? I privately feel sorry for you. You are engaged in a struggle in which the masses are pitched against the masses, and the bad people are hiding. Did I say that “April 14” believed that they are definitely going to win? “April 14” is specially against the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group. They are also against the Premier and Kang Sheng. Nevertheless, it is a mass organization!
You know where I live. If you want to strangle me, go ahead. If you want to fry me, go ahead. We went through trials and tribulations together. If you cannot tolerate others, how can you rule the country, and make peace in the world. I think you are not studying the Chairman’s writings, and not learning the Chairman’s working style.
The Chairman always wants to unite with those who oppose him.
Chairman: Don’t mention that any more. “Kill the cow, slaughter the monkey, and stew the mutton.” Why do we kill the cow? Can we keep it to help cultivate the field? All you cited are nothing but their attacks on Chiang Ch’ing and Lin Piao. All these can be stricken out in one stroke. They only talked about these things among themselves privately. They did not put up big character posters.
Chiang Ch’ing: I am not afraid even if they do put up big character posters.
Chairman: Who opposed Comrade Lin Piao the year before?
Premier, Yeh Chun: Maybe I-lin and Ti-hsi
Chairman: In addition, the leader of “June 16” Liu Kung-k’ai was against the Premier, but the Premier always protected him. People said the Premier was magnanimous. I agree with the Premier. These people should not have been arrested in the first place. Too many were arrested, because I nodded my head.
Fu-chih: This has nothing to do with the Chairman. It was I who did the arresting.
Chairman: Don’t try to free me from my mistakes, or to cover up for me. I ordered the arrest; I also agreed to their release.
Fu-chih: You did not ask me to arrest so many.
Chairman: Some of those released kill their time by riding a bicycle around Pa-pao-shan and T’ien-an-men. After a couple of months, life becomes dull. Others behaved like rascals. Their purpose is nothing but to make a little money and to play with a woman. Is P’eng Hsiao-meng that reactionary?
Premier, Wen-yuan: Bad. His parents are very bad. They are associated with Wu Hsiu-ch’uan.
Chiang Ch’ing: “April 14” is especially against the Party Central Committee and the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group, but it is a mass organization.
Chairman: You cannot get rid of several thousands of them. You cannot get rid of a thousand members of Peking University’s ‘Ching-kang-shan’. Bad people will get rid of themselves. Don’t mention “killing the cow, slaughtering the monkey, and stewing the mutton” any more. The cow can be used to cultivate the field. Why should we kill the monkey?
Chiang Ch’ing: We have political responsibilities toward you. To help you politically is not enough. You have to do it yourself — arrest the black hand and foster unity.
Nieh Yuan-tzu: More than 1,000 just left ‘Ching-kang-shan’. They are holding study classes.
Chairman: Those who leave ‘Ching-kang-shan’ are not reliable. Most of them are on one side physically, and on the other side in their minds. Physically they are with the Old Buddha, but their mind is with ‘Ching-kang-shan’. Don’t interfere with Niu Hui-lin. Let him go to ‘Ching-kang-shan’. Give him freedom. Don’t compel or insult others. Especially don’t beat people up.
Don t coerce or press for confessions. In the past we made many mistakes. You commit this mistake for the first time. We cannot blame you.
Chiang Ch’ing: How is Fan Li-ch’in?
Nieh Yuan-tzu: We did not do anything to him. He is with the counter-revolutionary group of P’eng Yen.
Chairman: Has Niu Hui-lin put him under arrest?
Nieh Yuan-tzu: He is under surveillance by his own people. Some agree to his arrest; others don’t.
Chairman: Is Hou Han-ching a student or a teacher?
Nieh Yuan-tzu: A graduate student. His father was a speculator in 1963.
Chiang Ch’ing: They are not the worst. They are made up of several organizations. There are bad people protected by secret agents. They are also engaged in what is known as single-line liaison.
Chairman: This working style is bad.
Today we have two from the Heaven faction and two from the Earth faction. The Earth faction supports “April 14” of Tsinghua and ‘Ching-kang-shan’ of Peking University. The Heaven faction supports Commander K’uai. I am not quite clear about this Heaven and Earth faction business. There are so many schools. . . In short, we have experience with the five generals. They are Nieh Yuan tzu, T’an Hou-lan (woman), K’uai Ta-fu, Han A’i-ching, and Wang Ta-pin. There are leaders from other schools, but there are only five who are famous. You have done a lot of work. No matter how many defects and mistakes are there in your work, we are going to protect you. You are also confronted with a lot of difficulties in your work. I have not experienced cultural revolution before, nor have you. The majority of schools did not engage in fighting. Only a small number of them did. They affected the workers, soldiers, and internal unity. Why are there so many non-committed people, and so few [for] cannon fodder? Have you ever thought about this?
Fu-chih: The Chairman loves you because you are small generals of the Red Guards. Vice Chairman Lin, the Premier, the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group, and especially Comrade Chiang Ch’ing are concerned about you. I have to take the major responsibility in this matter, because I did not give you enough help. I can go over this with you.
Chairman: All the institutions of higher learning in the capital are holding study classes, and no report has been made to the Central Committee. This has caused dissatisfaction to Nieh Yuan-tzu and others. You also run study classes, but you don’t permit inter-group activities. So they held a big meeting for inter-group activities. To forbid inter-group activities is wrong. You are also wrong in threatening to overthrow Hsieh Fu-chih.
Fu chih: That helped me greatly.
Chairman: There is a habit in Peking. Today we overthrow this; tomorrow we overthrow that.
Lin Piao: A big storm blows all “overthrows” away.
Chairman: Children are collecting big character posters as waste paper for sale. How many cents a catty?
Fu chih: Seven cents. The children are making a fortune.
Chairman: In don’t believe that. Chinese are good in one thing. When they have an opinion, they talk. It is all right to say that inter-group activities are not allowed, but absolute banning is not good. The opposition is conducting inter-factional activities. “Smash-the-Three Olds” faction is conducting inter-factional activities. The “Anti-Smash-the-Three Olds” faction is also conducting inter-factional activities. What’s wrong with a little inter-factional activity? Why can’t the Heaven faction and the Earth Faction have a little inter-factional activities. I say that inter-factional activities are permissible, because they are being done. If you don’t permit good people to have inter-factional activities, bad people will do it. Most of the people are good people. More than 90 percent of the people are good. Bad people are extremely few.
Chiang Ch’ing: It would be a good thing to unify our viewpoints through inter-factional activities, and pluck the bad people out.
(Huang Tso-chen reported that K’uai Ta-fu was coming. K’uai cried out as soon as he entered. The Chairman stood up and went forward to shake hands with K’uai. Comrade Chiang Ch’ing laughed. K’uai presented his case as he cried. He said that Tsinghua was in danger. The workers under the control of black hand were entering Tsinghua to suppress the students. He said it was a great conspiracy.)
Chairman: Is your name Huang Tso-chen? Where are you from?
Tso-chen: X X, Kiangsi.
Chairman: Oh, cousin! I heard of you a long time ago. Comrade Huang Tso-chen’s words were not taken seriously. Comrade Hsieh Fu-chih’s words were not taken seriously. The Municipal Revolutionary Committee meeting was not taken seriously. I don’t know whether the meeting of the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group will be taken seriously. I have become the black hand. Take me to the garrison headquarters.
Wen-yuan: Extend the red hand. Propagandise Mao Tse-tung’s thought. We follow you closely.
Chairman: Four methods. What are the four methods?
Wen-yuan: Military control; one divides into two; struggle-criticize-quit; fighting on a big scale, if necessary.
Chairman: The first is military control; the second is one divides into two; and the third is struggle-criticize-quit. In the first place, you don’t struggle. In the second place, you don’t criticize. In the third place, you don’t transform. How many months have you fought?
Premier: Since last year.
Chairman: The fourth method is to fight on a big scale. Get 10,000 people involved in the fighting. Withdraw the workers. Give the rifles back to you for a big fight, just like what was done in Szechwan.
Chiang Ch’ing: Disgrace to the family.
Chairman: I’m not afraid of fighting. I’m glad as soon as I hear about fighting. What kind of fighting is it in Peking? A few cold weapons, and a few rifle shots. In Szechwan, the fighting is real war. Each side has tens of thousands of men. They have rifles and cannons. I heard that they had radios, too.
Chiang Ch’ing . . . .
Chairman: In the future, wide publicity should be given to public notices as soon as they are issued. If anyone disobeys them, he should be arrested or eliminated, because it is counter-revolutionary!
Chiang Ch’ing: Kwangsi has been under seige for almost two months.
Premier: You people did not think as to why the Kwangsi notice is Chairman Mao’s great strategic plan. In regard to concern about affairs of the state, you five did not even issue a joint announcement to express your attitude, or do a little follow-up work.
Chairman: They are busy!
Premier: These are affairs of the State!
Chairman: Don’t divide yourselves into factions any more.
Chiang Ch’ing: I hope you will be united. Don’t divide yourselves into Heaven faction, Earth faction, Chang faction, and Li faction. You belong to the Mao Tse-tung thought faction!
Chairman: Don’t create two factions. One faction is enough, why two? There are difficulties in achieving this.
X X: No headway has been made in education reform.
Chairman: Education revolution cannot make any headway. Even we cannot make any headway, not to mention you. You are hurt by the old system. Why can’t we make any headway?. . . Our Comrade Ch’en Po-ta was anxious at the Central Committee meeting. I said don’t be so anxious. A few years later, they will be gone, and that will be the end. As I see it, the education revolution consists of only a few things. Why should we engage in education reform? If we fail, that’s the end of it. This is what the students say. Where else can I get information except from the non-committed students! Marx was engaged in the study of philosophy. . . Why can’t the first volume of his book, Das Kapital be published? To build a party is not an easy thing. The first international was divided into at least three factions Marxism, Proudhon-ism, Blanqui-ism, Lasaille-ism. . . Blanqui’s so-called report is nothing but anarchism. The first international was divided in four or five ways. We are not being fair in what we are doing now. To fight a little civil war is not a serious matter. Therefore, one of the four methods is to fight in a big way.
Wen-yuan: I am inclined to accept the struggle-criticize-disband, or the struggle-criticize-quit formula practiced in some schools.
Chairman: When the earth makes one revolution, it is one year. When it turns 10 times, it is 10 years. With the two factions going on like this, I think they have to quit. If they want to fight let them fight on a big scale. They should give their place in the school to novel writers for self-study. Those who study literature should write poems and drama. Those who study philosophy should write history, family history, and the process of revolution. Those who study political science and economics should not emulate the professors of Peking University. Are there any famous professors at Peking University? These subjects do not need teachers. Teaching is harmful. Organize a small group for self-study, a self-study university. The students may stay half a year, one year, two years, or three years. No examination is required. Examination is not a good method. Suppose ten questions are asked about a book, which contains 100 viewpoints. The ten questions cover only one-tenth of the book. Even if you answer all the ten questions correctly in the examination, what about the other 90 percent?
Who examined Marx? Who examined Engels? Who examined Lenin? Who examined Comrade Lin Piao? Who examined Comrade Huang Tso-chen? The needs of the masses and Chiang Kai-shek are our teachers. This was the case for all of us. Teachers are needed in middle schools, but everything should be made simple.
Wen-yuan: Establish a few good libraries.
Chairman: Give workers, peasants and soldiers time to use them. To study in a library is a good method. I studied at a library in Hunan for half a year, and in the library of Peking University for half a year. I chose my own books. Who taught me? I took only one course — journalism. I can be regarded as a member of the journalism class. As to that Philosophy Research Association, the sponsors were insincere. Hu Shih signed. There were also T’an P’ing-shan and Ch’en Kung-po.
The Peking University was run in such as inflexible fashion. It should have operated with more freedom.
Chiang Ch’ing: Now the universities are engaged in armed struggle.
Chairman: There are two advantages of armed struggle. First, one obtains combat experience from fighting. Second, bad people are exposed. We must make an overall analysis of armed struggle. Social phenomena do not change according to man’s will. Now that the workers are there to intervene, if they do not succeed, withdraw the workers. Let the students fight for another 10 years. The earth will be revolving as usual, and the heaven is not going to fall.
Chiang Ch’ing: We really love you. It is nonsense to say that we don’t need college students. We do want you. Some of you sometimes listen to us. Some of you act in one way in our presence, and in another way behind our back. We don’t know what you are holding back.
Chairman: If you don’t listen to us, I have a way out. Let the workers extend the “black hand”; use the workers to intervene; use the proletariat to intervene.
(Nieh Yuan-tzu requested that the Liberation Army be sent to Peking University.)
Chairman: You want your appetite satisfied. You insist on the 63rd Army, not any other unit. How about the 38th Army? If the 38th Army really supports ‘Ching-kang-shan’, I will send the 63rd Army. You should work with the 38th Army.
Chiang Ch’ing: Nieh Yuan-tzu, you should work on the 38th Army. You should give it a welcome.
Chairman: Send half of the troops from the 38th Army, and the other half from the 63rd Army. The 38th Army is not as bad as you think. Their base lies with Yang Ch’eng-wu and the Peking Military Region. The Peking Military Region held two meetings. The first one was not very good, the second was better. Cheng Wei-shan was put under investigation.
T’an Hou-lan, actually your gun was always pointed at Nieh Yuan-tzu. When you, T’an Hou-lan, a woman general, fired a shot, Cheng Wei-shan became very nervous. At the time, Cheng Wei-shan was not in Peking. He went to Pao-ting and Shansi to solve his problems. We didn’t see him, did we? Nobody knows whether this divisional commander is good or bad. He scared all the generals. Did he give you (pointing to T’an) any trouble?
T’an Hou-lan: No, the students don’t agree with him.
Chairman: There must be historical reasons. These things don’t happen accidentally. They don’t come suddenly.
Po-ta: Follow the Chairman’s teaching closely; resolutely carry it out.
Chairman: Don’t talk about teachings.
Wen-yuan: The Chairman’s words today have profound meaning.
Po-ta: The first half of 1966 was relatively good. All the colleges and universities agitated and ignited the flame of revolution. It was right to touch off the storm of revolution. Now, they have gone beyond their heads, thinking that they are great. They want to put the entire country under their control. The hands of K’uai Ta-fu and Han A’i-ching reach everywhere, but they are ignorant.
Chairman: They are only 20-odd years old. Don’t take the young people lightly. Chou Yu started as a cavalryman. He was only 16 when he became the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Wu. Please don’t think that you are old timers.
Chiang Ch’ing: We took part in the revolution when we were teenagers.
Chairman: Don’t feel elated; elation all over the body is just like a disease.
Po-ta: Han A’i-ching, you have not given much thought to Chairman Mao’s thinking and the opinion of the Central Committee. You call secret meetings on the basis of information obtained surreptitiously. You put your personal interests first. You are following a dangerous path.
Chairman: First of all, I have been bureaucratic. I have never met you. Had they not wanted to grab the black hand, I would not have asked you to come here. Let K’uai Ta-fu wake up.
Po-ta: K’uai Ta-fu, you should wake up. Stop the horse at the edge of the precipitous cliff. You are on a dangerous course.
Lin Piao: The horse at the edge of the precipitous cliff. Admit your mistakes!
Chairman: Don’t use the words “admit mistakes.”
Po-ta: K’uai Ta-fu does not respect the worker masses. If he still refuses to listen to us, it will mean his disrespect to the Central Committee, his disrespect to Chairman Mao. That road is dangerous.
Chairman: It is pretty dangerous. Now it is time for the younger leaders to make their mistakes.
Premier: The Chairman said long time ago: now it is the younger leader’s turn to make their mistakes.
Lin Piao: K’uai Ta-fu, our attitude toward you was taken after consultation with the Garrison Headquarters and the Municipal Revolutionary Committee. You said that you don’t understand the attitude of the Central Committee. To-day, Chairman Mao shows his personal concern about you, and has made the most important, the most correct, the clearest, and the most timely teaching. If you turn a deaf ear to this again, you will be committing a grave mistake. You Red Guards have played an important role during the Great Cultural Revolution. Now, a great revolutionary unity has been achieved in many schools throughout the nation. As far as great unity is concerned, some of the schools are still lagging behind. You should catch up. You have failed to see what is needed at different stages of the movement.
Chairman: T’an Hou-lan’s opposition has only 200 people. A year later, they are still not suppressed. The opposition force in other schools is much larger in size, how can they be conquered?
Ts’ao Ts’ao tried to use force to conquer Sun Ch’uan, and was defeated. Liu Pei used force to conquer Sun Ch’uan; he lost Chieh-t’ing and was defeated. Ssu-ma I failed to conquer Chuko Liang by force. The first battle lasted a long while, but Chang Ho had only one horse left at the end. . .
Yeh Chun: That’s the loss of Chieh-t’ing
Lin Piao: To fight the capitalist roaders is a good thing. It is also necessary to struggle with the freaks and monsters in literary circles. Now there are people who are not doing this. Instead, they are engaged in pitting one group of students against another group of students, and one group of masses against another group of masses. Most of them are children of workers and peasants, being utilized by bad people. Some of them are counter-revolutionaries. Others have just begun to be revolutionary. Gradually, their revolutionary spirit diminished and went in the other direction. Still others subjectively want revolution, but their objective action is just the opposite. There is a small group of people who are both subjectively and objectively counter-revolutionary. You are isolated from the masses.
Chairman. The workers and peasants constitute more than 90 percent of the population of the country. More than 90 percent of the schools are good; very few of them are engaged in civil strife. There are only six of them in Peking.
Fu-chih: Tsinghua has 20,000 students. Less than 5,000 are engaged in armed struggle.
Lin Piao: Those who do not take part in the fighting disapprove of the fighting.
Chairman: They are riding on the back of a tiger, there is no way of coming down although they wish to; K’uai Ta-fu can come down and become a government official or a plain citizen. K’uai Ta-fu should welcome the workers.
Fu-chih: The workers are not armed with an ounce of iron. They carry only three weapons: (1) quotations from Chairman Mao’s works; (2) Chairman Mao’s latest instructions; and (3) the “July 3” notice.
K’ang Sheng: The rifles in Tsinghua were provided by the Peking Aeronautical Institute. Two car-loads of rifles were given to Tsinghua. K’uai Ta-fu is the commander and Han A’i-ching is the political commissar.
Han A’i-ching: There isn’t such a thing! There isn’t such a thing at all! People from the Garrison Command came over to our place to check the rifles several times. Not a single rifle was missing.
Fu-chih: You are correct; you are all right again. I criticized you several times, and you objected. You don’t have the self-criticism spirit at all.
Po-ta: Should we take back the rifles?
Han A’i-ching: Chairman, I have a request to make. Please assign a unit of the Liberation Army to supervise me. Many reports are at variance with facts. I love K’uai Ta-fu very much. I am also aware of the fact that as long as I am with him, I will be involved in many things. But I feel that I must do my best to protect him lest he collapses. His fate is linked with that of the Red Guards throughout the country. Assign a Liberation Army unit to me, and everything will be clarified.
Po-ta: No self-criticism spirit.
Chiang Ch’ing: I made a mistake. I spoiled you. Hsieh Fu-chih, you spoiled her more than I did. She is spoiled. Now that there is a little trouble; Chairman Mao’s method is the best.
Chairman: Don’t criticize all the time. Yang Ch’eng-wu is creating many centres. The National Defence Scientific Committee is engaged in the theory of many centres. Throughout the country, there are thousands, or perhaps tens of thousands of centres. If everybody considers himself No. 1 in the country, will there still be any centre?
Chiang Ch’ing: Han A’i ching, I criticized you several times. You have never expressed yourself
Chairman: Don’t criticize her. You always blame others; never blame yourself.
Chiang Ch’ing: I was saying that she lacks so much in self-criticism spirit.
Chairman: Young people cannot stand criticism. Her character is somewhat like mine when I was young. Kids are strong in subjectivism, very strong. They only criticize others.
Chiang Ch’ing: K’uai Ta-fu is smiling now. Relax a little, don’t be so tense.
(K’uai reported that Ch’en Yu-yen, a girl student at ‘Ching-kangshan’ Headquarters, was arrested by the workers.)
Has Ch’en Yu-yen been released? She is a girl, and should be protected.
K’uai Ta-fu: Ch’en Yu-yen is sleeping at Peking Aeronautical Institute.
Chairman: If you want to arrest the “black hand,” the “black hand” is me. What can you do to me? We are sympathetic with your side. I cannot accept “April 14’s” idea of certain victory, but we must woo their masses and some of their leaders. Chou Chia-yin’s main viewpoint is that those who conquered the country cannot rule it. He said that K’uai Ta-fu must turn over his authority to “April 14.”
We asked the workers to do some propaganda work, you refused, knowing clearly what kind of propaganda they were to do. Huang Tso-chen and Hsieh Fu-chih explained this matter, but they failed to persuade you. The workers were unarmed. You killed or wounded five of them. Just like Peking University, we are sympathetic with Nieh Yuan-tzu, sympathetic with you five leaders. Didn’t you know why tens of thousands of workers went to Tsinghua University? How dare they go without the order of the Central Committee? You are very passive. Contrary to our expectations, “April 14” welcomed the workers, while ‘Ching-kang-shan’ did not. You are mixed up. Nobody was invited here today from “April 14” or ‘Ching-kang-shan’ of Peking University because the thinking of “April 14” is not right. Although flying the red flag, ‘Ching-kang-shan’ has more bad people. The Nieh Yuan-tzu faction has more good people.
Nieh Yuan-tzu: Wang, Kuan, and Ch’i had a hand in it.
Chairman: You are opposed to Wang, Kuan, and Ch’i. You had inter-faction contacts, which I cannot forbid. Han A’i-ching, K’uai Ta-fu, are you good friends? You two should continue to be good friends. Han A’i-ching, you should continue to help him by making better policies.
Now, “April 14” is very happy, thinking that ‘Ching-kang-shan’ is going to collapse. I don’t believe that. I think ‘Ching-kang-shan’ will continue to be ‘Ching-kang-shan’. I don’t mean you Old Buddha’s ‘Ching-kang-shan’.
Wen-yuan, Fu-chih: The real Ching-kang-shan, the base of revolution!
Chiang Ch’ing: Don’t put me in a position where I cannot do anything to help you although it is my wish.
Chairman: Many of those who beat up the workers are not your men. I heard that they came from other places.
Premier: Do you still have out-of-town students in your place?
K’uai Ta-fu: Yes.
Chairman: All of you haven’t slept yet. K’uai Ta-fu, if you don’t have a place to sleep tonight, go to Han A’i-ching’s place to sleep. Han A’i-ching should take good care of him. Han A’i-ching, you should take good care of him. When you people get together, go to Han A’i-ching’s place to take a little rest, and then hold a meeting.
Premier: Han A’i-ching, you can come up with some good idea to help him.
Chairman: K’uai Ta-fu, is your action against the Central Committee? You ignored Huang Tso-chen’s words, and ignored Hsieh Fu-chih’s words. Even a meeting at the Municipal Revolutionary Committee did not stop you. I cannot but extend my “black hand.” I mobilized the workers to stop your fighting. The fighting went on for so many days. As the workers marched in with drums and gongs, you still did not pay any attention. You are isolated from the masses, the workers, the peasants, the soldiers, the majority of the students, and your own people. Many people are saying uncomplimentary words about you. We did not tell Tsinghua University to keep quiet directly, but we did tell them indirectly.
Wu Te: I had a talk with K’uai Ta-fu yesterday. He did not listen to me.
Chairman: “April 14” welcomed the workers. You (Ching-kang-shan) people are very stupid, very passive. I am very unhappy with that “April 14.”
Chiang Ch’ing: “April 14” cursed me.
Chairman: The workers carried an effigy in their demonstration, and cut the power supply cables. At this moment, “April 14” was not told anything about this demonstration, why did they welcome them? You are very foolish this time, giving “April 14” a chance to welcome the workers.
Chiang Ch’ing: Even the masses of “April 14” are saying that K’uai Ta-fu is left oriented, and Shen Ju-huai [an “April 14” leader] is right oriented. Tsinghua is engaged in a grand unity movement, but it won’t work without K’uai Ta-fu.
Chairman: K’uai Ta-fu, can you be the chancellor of Tsinghua University? Let the university be run by two from ‘Ching-kang-shan’ and one from “April 14.” Let Shen Ju-huai be the vice chancellor.
K’uai Ta-fu: No, I can’t, I am unable to
Chairman: Unity is needed. We need K’uai Ta-fu. Without K’uai Ta-fu, unity cannot be achieved. K’uai Ta-fu is left inclined. Two from ‘Ching-kang-shan’. “April 14” is right oriented.
Chiang Ch’ing: Now, starting with you five, stop the fighting first.
Chairman: First, military control. Second, divide into two, with “April 14” taking a half and you, K’uai Ta-fu, taking the other half. Third, struggle-criticize-quit. These are the proposals, but they are unwilling to follow.
In the first place, you don’t struggle. In the second place, you don’t criticise. In the third place, you don’t transform. You concentrate your effort on civil war. Of course, civil war will take months. The fourth way is to withdraw the workers, return all the rifles to you for a big fight. Should we run liberal arts college? We still have to run liberal arts colleges. As to how, we have to make a study and find a method. The old method encouraged revisionism.
T’an Hou-lan: Is the Normal University going to be continued?
Chairman: If we suspend it, who is going to teach senior middle school? Who is going to teach special secondary schools? How can we go without a foreign language school? It doesn’t work if only one wind prevails. But heaven is not going to fall if only one wind prevails for a few years. During World War I which lasted a number of years, not only universities were suspended, but high schools and primary schools were also suspended. Everything was chaotic.
Chiang Ch’ing: Reform is a hard task; you people cannot sit still on your rear ends.
Chairman: Knowledge is not gained in schools. Hasn’t Comrade Lin Piao just said that! Where did his knowledge come from? From Whampoa Military Academy? Comrade Huang Yung-sheng went to school for one year and a half. Wen Yu-ch’eng is lucky; he went to school for three years. Wen Yu-ch’eng, you are from Ch’ang-kang; you know a few characters. Society is the biggest university. How can it work if you sit in a narrow grove? Society is the biggest university. Lenin studied in a university for a year and a half. Engels did not finish high school. Both of them were better off than Gorky, who went to primary school for only two years. I, too, haven’t attended a university. . . [text illegible] . . . The inventor of the steam engine was a worker, not a college teacher. . . [text illegible] . . . Look at some of our children who spend more than ten years studying. They are physically ruined, and become unable to sleep. A child may study history, but he doesn’t understand class struggle.
Chiang Ch’ing: They study dozens of thick books. The works of Marx, Engels, and Chairman Mao become reference material, or supplementary material. Only the books chosen by their teachers are formal teaching materials.
Chairman: Six years is too long for primary school education; six years is too long for middle school education. Too much time is wasted. Do away with examinations! What are examinations for? It would be good if no examinations were necessary for any course. All examinations should be abolished, absolutely abolished. Who examined Marx, Engels, Lenin, and Stalin? Who examined Comrade Lin Piao? Who examined me? Comrade Hsieh Fu-chih, call all the students back to school. If some of them don’t want to go back because they are angry, don’t force them. It is not right that members of “April 14” are staying in school, while members of ‘Ching-kang-shan’ are not. Tell all members of ‘Ching-kang-shan’ to come to the People’s Assembly Hall. Differentiation should be made in treating the leaders of “April 14.”
Han A’i ching: Chairman, I have a question. If 10 or 100 years from now, civil war should break out in China, and if one faction claims that they represent Mao Tse-tung’s thought and another faction also claims that they represent Mao Tse-tung’s thought, resulting in a situation where each faction occupies a piece of territory and the entire country is engulfed in war, what would we do?
Chairman: There is nothing starling about it. The war against the Ch’ing Dynasty lasted more than 20 years. We fought Chiang Kai-shek for over 10 years. Within the Chinese Communist Party, we had Ch’en Tu-hsiu, Li Li-san, Wang Ming, Po Ku, Chang Kuo-t’ao, Kao Kang, Liu Shao-ch’i, and many more. These experiences are more valuable than our knowledge about Marxism.
Lin Piao: We have Mao Tse-tung’s thought.
Chairman: We are better off to have this Great Cultural Revolution than to have none. Of course, we cannot guarantee. [illegible]. . . . I don’t understand your sister Nieh Yuan-su. Why must your elder brother and elder sister align with their younger sister?
Premier: My younger brother Chou Yung likes to be associated with Wang, Kuan, Ch’i. I have grabbed him and sent him to the garrison headquarters.
Chairman: My father was bad. If he were alive today, he should be given a “jet plane ride” [a form of punishment].
Lin Piao: Lu Hsun’s younger brother was a big traitor.
Chairman: I, myself, am not smart, either. I believed in everything I studied. Thereafter, I studied for another seven years, including half a year spent in studying capitalism. I was totally ignorant about Marxism. Knowing only Napoleon and Washington, I was not even aware of the existence of Marx in this world. It is much better to study in the library than attending classes. A piece of cake is enough to take care of a day’s meal. The old library attendant became very well acquainted with me.
Po-ta: Han A’i-ching mentioned this problem before. With Comrade Lin Piao as Chairman Mao’s successor and with Mao Tse-tung’s thought, I am not afraid of the emergence of revisionism.
Chairman: Nobody can guarantee that there will be no more cultural revolutions after this one. There will still be complications. Don’t talk about new stages. There are so many new stages. I mentioned the Shanghai Machine Tool Plant affair. What new stage is that? One cultural revolution may not be enough
Wen-yuan: The Chairman has already talked about this problem.
Premier: Comrade Lin Piao has studied the Chairman’s writings well. Vice Chairman Lin has also mastered Soviet affairs and the works of Marx and Lenin.
Chairman: Did the party go out of existence because of the emergence of Ch’en Tu-hsiu? Despite Li Li-san, the Wang Ming line, and Li Li-san’s repeated errors, the party still survived, the revolution still went on, and the armed units still marched on. . . [text illegible]
Chiang Ch’ing: Han A’i-ching wrote to me several times, discussing this problem. Why did Han A’i-ching keep bringing this problem up? In the first place, she is isolated from the workers and the peasants. In the second place, she is isolated from reality. As soon as I see her, she thinks about the future. She always talks about things that might happen decades from now. She even asked me when World War III will break out.
Chairman: It is good to think far ahead. She is good! She is good! We may die in many ways. First, we may be killed by bombs. Second, we may die of diseases or germs. Third, we may be killed in a train or plane accident. Fourth, I love to swim; I may be drowned. Lastly, we may die a natural death, death caused by germs.
I heard that Liu Shao-ch’i has recovered from a serious disease. Po I-po almost died. He had kidney infection, heart disease, hypertension, and diabetes. Four or five doctors and two nurses saved him. Have you heard that?
Wen-yuan: Historical development is always progressive and has ups and downs, but the future is bright. We believe in Mao Tse-tung’s thought; we believe in the masses. I think Han A’i-ching is a pessimist.
Han A’i-ching: Victory is not won in one shot. There will always be ups and downs according to dialectics. . . [Remaining text illegible].
[1.] Neih yuan tzu, Han A’i-ching, Wang Ta-ping, Kuai Ta-fu, Tan Ha-lan, and Huang Tso chen were all leader’ of various Red Guard factions of Peking.
[2.] ‘Ching-kang-shan’, ‘April 14’, ‘May 16’, ‘April 22’ were all the names of various Red guard organisations
[3.] Hsieh Fu-chih, at that time vice-premier, and member of the Cultural Revolutionary group of the CC of the CPC.
[4.] Huang Yung-sheng, the Army Chief of staff of that time.
Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung