[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. Note from massline.org: This article is reprinted from Peking Review, Volume 9, #25, June 17, 1966, pp. 7-13. Thanks are due to the www.wengewang.org web site for some of the work done for this posting.]
UNDER the direct leadership of Chairman Mao Tse-tung and the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party, a great mass proletarian cultural revolution without parallel in history is swiftly and vigorously unfolding with the irresistible force of an avalanche.
Holding high the great red banner of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, the masses of workers, peasants and soldiers and the masses of revolutionary cadres and revolutionary intellectuals are sweeping away the representatives of the bourgeoisie who have wormed their way into the Party, the monsters of all kinds and all forms of decadent bourgeois and feudal ideology. An unprecedentedly favourable situation has arisen on the political, ideological and cultural fronts.
This is an extremely acute and complex class struggle to foster what is proletarian and eradicate what is bourgeois in the superstructure, in the realm of ideology—a life-and-death struggle between the bourgeoisie attempting to restore capitalism and the proletariat determined to prevent it. This struggle affects the issue of whether the dictatorship of the proletariat and the economic base of socialism in our country can be consolidated and developed or not, and whether or not our Party and country will change colour. It affects the destiny and future of our Party and our country as well as the destiny and future of world revolution. It is most important that this struggle should not be taken lightly.
Why is it imperative that the proletarian cultural revolution be launched? Why is this revolution so important?
Comrade Mao Tse-lung has scientifically summed up the international historical experience of the dictatorship of the proletariat and put forth the theory of contradiction, classes and class struggle in socialist society. He constantly reminds us never to forget the class struggle, never to forget to put politics first and never to forget to consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat, and that we must take various measures to prevent a revisionist usurpation of leadership, to prevent a capitalist restoration. He points out that the overthrow of political power is necessarily preceded by efforts to seize hold of the superstructure and ideology in order to prepare public opinion, and that this is true both of the revolutionary and the counterrevolutionary classes. Proceeding from this fundamental point of departure, Comrade Mao Tse-tung has called on us to launch the class struggle in the ideological field to foster what is proletarian and eradicate what is bourgeois.
Here is a great truth, a great development of Marxism-Leninism.
History shows that the bourgeoisie first took hold of ideology and prepared public opinion before it seized political power from the feudal landlord class. Starting from the period of the “Renaissance,” the European bourgeoisie persistently criticized feudal ideology and propagated bourgeois ideology. It was in the 17th and 18th centuries, after several hundred years of preparation of public opinion, that the bourgeoisie seized political power and established its dictatorship in one European country after another.
Marx and Engels began propagating the theories of communism more than a century ago. They did so to prepare public opinion for the seizure of political power by the proletariat. The Russian proletarian revolution culminated in the seizure of political power only after decades of preparation of public opinion. Our own experience is even fresher in our minds. When the Chinese proletariat began to appear on the political scene, it was weak and unarmed. How was the revolution to start? It started with the propagation of Marxism-Leninism and the exposure of imperialism and its lackeys in China. The struggle of the Chinese proletariat for the seizure of political power began precisely with the May 4th cultural revolution.
In the final analysis, the history of the seizure of political power by the Chinese proletariat is a history of Mao Tse-tung’s thought gripping the masses of workers, peasants and soldiers. As the masses have aptly put it: “Without Mao Tse-tung’s thought, there would have been no New China.” By integrating Marxism-Leninism with the practice of the Chinese revolution, Comrade Mao Tse-tung, the great revolutionary standard-bearer, changed the whole face of the Chinese revolution. Historical experience shows that Mao Tse-tung’s thought enabled us to gain the increasing support of the masses, to have armed forces and guns, to set up one revolutionary base area after another, to seize political power bit by bit and finally to take over political power throughout the country.
Having seized political power, the proletariat has become the ruling class and the landlord and capitalist classes have become the ruled. The landlord class and the reactionary bourgeoisie will never be reconciled to being ruled or to their extinction. They are constantly dreaming of a restoration through subversion of the dictatorship of the proletariat, so that they can once again ride on the backs of the working people. They still have great strength. They have money, extensive social contacts and international links, and experience in counter-revolution. In particular, the ideology of the exploiting classes still has a very big market. Some unsteady elements in the revolutionary ranks are prone to be corrupted by this ideology and consequently become counter-revolutionaries. Moreover, the spontaneous influence of the petty-bourgeoisie ceaselessly engenders capitalism. Having seized political power the proletariat still faces the danger of losing it. After being established the socialist system still faces the danger of a capitalist restoration. Failure to give this serious attention and take the necessary steps will end in our Party and our country changing colour and will cause tens of millions of our people to lose their lives.
Bourgeois and feudal ideologies are one of the most important strongholds of the overthrown landlord and capitalist classes after the socialist transformation of the ownership of the means of production has been effected. Their efforts at restoration are first of all directed at getting their hold over ideology and using their decadent ideas in every possible way to deceive the masses. The seizure of ideology and the moulding of public opinion are the bourgeoisie’s preparation for the subversion of the dictatorship of the proletariat. And when the opportunity is ripe, they will stage a coup to seize political power in one way or another.
After the establishment of socialist relations of production, the Soviet Union failed to carry out a proletarian cultural revolution in earnest. Bourgeois ideology ran rife, corrupting the minds of the people and almost imperceptibly undermining the socialist relations of production. After the death of Stalin, there was a more blatant counter-revolutionary moulding of public opinion by the Khrushchev revisionist group. And this group soon afterwards staged its “palace” coup to subvert the dictatorship of the proletariat and usurped Party, military and government power.
In the 1956 Hungarian counter-revolutionary incident, the counter-revolutionaries also prepared public opinion before they took to the streets to create disturbances and stage riots. This counter-revolutionary incident was engineered by imperialism and started by a group of anti-communist intellectuals of the Petofi Club. Imre Nagy, who at that time still wore the badge of a Communist, was “fitted out with a king’s robe” and became the chieftain of the counter-revolutionaries.
International historical experience of the dictatorship of the proletariat shows that this dictatorship cannot be consolidated, nor can the socialist system be consolidated, unless a proletarian cultural revolution is carried out and persistent efforts are made to eradicate bourgeois ideology. Bourgeois ideas spreading unchecked inevitably leads to the subversion of the dictatorship of the proletariat and the emergence of such representatives of the bourgeoisie as Khrushchev, who will seize political power through a “palace” coup or a military coup, or a combination of both. If the dictatorship of the proletariat is to be consolidated, if a country under the dictatorship of the proletariat is to advance in a socialist and communist direction, a proletarian cultural revolution is imperative; proletarian ideology must be fostered and bourgeois ideology eradicated and the ideological roots of revisionism must be pulled out completely and the roots of Marxism-Leninism, of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, must be firmly implanted.
Socialist revolution and socialist construction demand energetic efforts in many fields of work. Running through this work there must be a red line, which is nothing other than the class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, the struggle between the socialist and the capitalist roads, and the class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie in the field of ideology.
Comrade Mao Tse-tung teaches us:
The class struggle between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, the class struggle between the different political forces, and the class struggle in the ideological field between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie will continue to be long and tortuous and at times will even become very acute. The proletariat seeks to transform the world according to its own world outlook, and so does the bourgeoisie. In this respect, the question of which will win out, socialism or capitalism, is still not really settled. (On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People.)
The purpose of the proletarian cultural revolution is to settle the question of “who will win” in the ideological field between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie. It is a protracted and difficult historical task that runs through every field of work.
Some comrades regard the debates in the press between the proletariat and the reactionary bourgeoisie as “trivial, paper polemics” of literary men. Immersed in their work, some comrades are not concerned with the struggle on the ideological and cultural fronts and pay no heed to the class struggle in the field of ideology. This is absolutely wrong and most dangerous. If bourgeois ideology is allowed to run wild, the dictatorship of the proletariat will become the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie, and the socialist system will become a capitalist system, or a semi-colonial, semi-feudal system. We must shout to these people: Comrades! The enemy is sharpening his sword, he wants to cut off our heads, he wants to overturn our state power. How is it that you see it and hear it and take no notice?
Both the seizure and consolidation of political power depend on the pen as well as the gun. If we are to safeguard and carry forward the revolutionary cause, we must not only hold on firmly to the gun but must take up the proletarian pen to blast and sweep away the pen of the bourgeoisie. Only by sweeping away all bourgeois ideology can we consolidate proletarian political power and keep an ever firmer hold on the proletarian gun.
A good look at the class struggle on the ideological and cultural fronts makes one stirred to the soul.
The struggle on the ideological and cultural fronts between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, between Marxism and anti-Marxism, has never ceased for a moment since the founding of the Chinese People’s Republic. After the establishment of socialist relations of production this class struggle in the ideological field has become ever deeper, ever more complex and acute.
In 1957 the bourgeois Rightists launched a frenzied attack against the Party and socialism. Before the alliance of the reactionary politicians headed by Chang Po-chun and Lo Lung-chi came out into the open in this offensive, bourgeois Rightist intellectuals had already scattered a good many poisonous weeds around; one after another, there emerged a number of counter-revolutionary notions, political programmes and films and novels. These were obviously efforts to prepare public opinion for the bourgeois Rightists to seize political power.
Under the wise leadership of the Party’s Central Committee and Chairman Mao, the Chinese people repulsed this wild offensive of the bourgeois Rightists and won an important victory on the political and ideological fronts.
Then in 1958, under the great red banner of the general line for socialist construction, the Chinese people embarked with boundless enthusiasm and energy on the great leap forward in every field of work and set up the people’s communes in a big way. At the same time, the masses of workers, peasants and soldiers zealously took to studying Chairman Mao’s works and applying his thought in a creative way. A revolution also began on the ideological and cultural fronts.
From 1959 to 1962, China suffered temporary economic difficulties as a result of sabotage by the Soviet revisionists and three successive years of serious natural calamities. But difficulties could not intimidate the revolutionary Chinese people. They worked hard and courageously forged ahead under the wise leadership of the Party’s Central Committee and Chairman Mao. Within a few years they had overcome the difficulties and brought about an excellent situation. However, in these few years of economic difficulties, monsters had come out of their hiding places one after another. The offensive of the reactionary bourgeoisie against the Party and socialism reached a degree of utmost fury.
In the field of philosophical studies, Yang Hsien-chen blatantly spread the fallacy denying the identity of idea and being in an attempt to hold back the masses of workers, peasants and soldiers from bringing their subjective initiative into play and to oppose the great leap forward. Subsequently, he came out with the theory of “two combining into one,” thus providing philosophical “grounds” for the extremely reactionary political line which advocated the liquidation of struggle in our relations with imperialism, the reactionaries and modern revisionism, and reduction of assistance and support to the revolutionary struggle of other peoples, as well as the extension of plots for private use and of free markets, the increase of small enterprises with sole responsibility for their own profits or losses, and the fixing of output quotas based on the household. The so-called “authorities” representing the bourgeoisie who had wormed their way into the Party wildly brandished the three cudgels of “philistinism,” “oversimplification” and “pragmatism” to oppose the workers, peasants and soldiers from studying Chairman Mao’s works and applying his thought in a creative way. Moreover, exploiting their positions and powers, they forbade the press to publish philosophical articles written by workers, peasants and soldiers. At the same time, under the guise of studying the history of philosophy, certain bourgeois “specialists” widely propagated the ideas of “liberty, equality and fraternity” and lavished praise on Confucius, making use of this mummy to publicize their whole set of bourgeois ideas.
In the field of economic studies, Sun Yeh-fang and company put forward a whole set of revisionist fallacies. They wanted to put profit and money in command to oppose putting Mao Tse-tung’s thought and politics in command. They vainly attempted to change the socialist relations of production and turn socialist enterprises into capitalist ones.
In the field of historical studies, a pack of bourgeois “authorities” launched unscrupulous attacks on the revolution in historical studies which began in 1958. They opposed putting Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung’s thought, in command in historical research and spread the notion that historical data are everything. They used what they called “historicism” to counter the Marxist-Leninist theory of class struggle. They bitterly hated those revolutionary research workers in history who made critical appraisals of emperors, kings, generals and prime ministers and gave prominence to the peasants and the peasant wars. They lauded the emperors, kings, generals and prime ministers to the skies while energetically vilifying the peasants and peasant wars. They wore the bourgeois “royalists” in the field of historical studies. Among them, some were inveterate anti-communists. These include Wu Han and Chien Po-tsan.
In the field of literature and art, the representatives of the bourgeoisie spared no effort to propagate the whole revisionist line in literature and art to oppose Chairman Mao’s line, and vigorously propagated what they called the traditions of the 1930s. Typical were their theories on “truthful writing,” on “the broad path of realism,” on “the deepening of realism,” on opposition to “subject-matter as the decisive factor,” on “middle characters,” on opposition to “the smell of gunpowder,” on “the merging of various trends as the spirit of the age,” and on “discarding the classics and rebelling against orthodoxy.” Under the “guidance” of these theories, there appeared a wave of bad, anti-Party, anti-socialist operas and plays, films and novels, and histories of the cinema and of literature.
In the field of education, the representatives of the bourgeoisie did their utmost to oppose the educational policy advanced by Chairman Mao, which is aimed at enabling the educated to develop morally, intellectually and physically and become socialist-minded, cultured working people. They spared no effort in opposing the part-work, part-study educational system and propagating the educational “theories” and systems of Soviet revisionism. They made desperate efforts to win the younger generation away from us in the vain hope of training them into heirs of the bourgeoisie.
In the field of journalism, the representatives of the bourgeoisie exerted themselves to oppose the guiding role of journalism, and advocated the bourgeois conception of “imparting knowledge.” They vainly attempted to strangle the leadership of Marxism-Leninism, of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, in journalistic work, hoping to give free currency to bourgeois contraband and wrest from us our journalistic base.
The most reactionary and fanatical element in this adverse current was the anti-Party “Three-Family Village” gang. They had many bases—newspapers, magazines, forums and publishing organizations. Their long arms reached out to all corners of the cultural field and they usurped some positions of leadership. Their nose for anything reactionary was extremely sharp and their writings showed extremely close and prompt co-ordination with anything reactionary in the political atmosphere. Under direction, organized, acting according to plan and with set purposes, they prepared public opinion for the restoration of capitalism and the overthrow of the dictatorship of the proletariat.
Playing the main role in this adverse current were the representatives of the bourgeoisie who had sneaked into the Party. They waved “red flags” to oppose the red flag and donned the cloak of Marxism-Leninism, of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, to oppose Marxism-Leninism and Mao Tse-tung’s thought. Dressing themselves up as “authorities” on Marxism, as “authorities” clarifying the Party’s policies, they wantonly spread poison and deceived the masses. They took advantage of their positions and powers, on the one hand to let loose all kinds of monsters, and on the other hand to suppress the counter-attacks of the proletarian Left. They are a bunch of schemers who put up the signboard of communism behind which they actually peddled anti-Party and anti-socialist poison. They are a most dangerous bunch.
We have constantly fought back against the attacks launched by the bourgeoisie from 1959 onwards. Especially since last November, when Comrade Yao Wen-yuan published his article “On the New Historical Drama Hai Jui Dismissed From Office” and sounded the clarion of the great proletarian cultural revolution, a mass counter-offensive against the bourgeoisie’s attacks has opened up.
In this counter-attack the political consciousness of the broad masses of workers, peasants, soldiers, revolutionary cadres and revolutionary intellectuals has risen to an unprecedented level and their fighting power has enormously increased. The battles fought by the masses have shattered and uprooted the “Three-Family Village” anti-Party clique. And its roots lay nowhere else than in the former Peking Municipal Party Committee. A black anti-Party and anti-socialist line ran through the leadership of the former Peking Municipal Committee of the Communist Party. Some of its leading members are not Marxist-Leninists, but revisionists. They controlled many bases and media and exercised a dictatorship over the proletariat. They are a clique of careerists and conspirators. Their plots were exposed and they were defeated. The Central Committee of our Party reorganized the Peking Municipal Party Committee and established a new one. This decision was very wise and absolutely correct. It was a new victory for Mao Tse-tung’s thought.
From the moment we launched this large-scale counter-attack last year, the representatives of the bourgeoisie who wormed their way into the Party and waved “red flags” to oppose the red flag, were thrown into utter confusion. They hurriedly invoked five “talismans” to support and shelter the bourgeois Rightists and suppress and attack the proletarian Left.
One of these “talismans” was raised in the name of “opening wide.”
The representatives of the bourgeoisie, who wormed their way into the Party and waved “red flags” to oppose the red flag, tried their best to distort the Party’s “opening wide” policy by removing its class content and twisting it into bourgeois liberalization. They allowed only the bourgeois Rightists to “speak out” and did not allow the proletarian Left to enter the contest. They allowed only the bourgeois Rightists to attack and did not allow the proletarian Left to counter-attack. They let the Rightists “open” as wide as they could while they either shelved the counterattacking manuscripts sent in by those of the Left or compelled the authors to rewrite them in the light of their ideas. They said that Hai Jui Dismissed From Office should not be criticized from a political angle, otherwise this would affect the “opening wide” and people would not dare to speak up. We would like to ask these lords: Did you just “open” very slightly? Haven’t you attacked the Party politically in the manner of a warrior brandishing his sword, or drawing his bow? Why did you prohibit the proletariat from “opening wide” to counter-attack the bourgeois Rightists politically? In fact, your “opening wide” gave the green light to all the bourgeoisie and the red light to hold back the proletariat.
Another “talisman” went by the name of “construction before destruction.”
Pretending to be “dialecticians,” the representatives of the bourgeoisie, who wormed their way into the Party and waved “red flags” to oppose the red flag, set up a clamour about “construction before destruction” when the proletariat countered the bourgeois attack. And on the pretext of “construction before destruction,” they would not allow the proletariat to destroy bourgeois ideology, to attack the reactionary political citadel of the bourgeoisie. “Construction before destruction” is opposed to dialectics and Mao Tse-tung’s thought. Comrade Mao Tse-tung constantly teaches us that there is no construction without destruction. It is precisely destruction that we want to come first. Destruction means revolution, it means criticism. Destruction necessarily calls for reasoning, and reasoning is construction. Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung’s thought, has all developed in the struggle to destroy bourgeois ideology, Right opportunism and “Left” opportunism. Historical dialectics is nothing other than destruction before construction and construction in the course of destruction. Is not Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung’s thought—the greatest truth ever known since time immemorial—construction? We would like to ask those bourgeois lords, what is it you want to construct? Obviously, only bourgeois, reactionary ideology and not proletarian, revolutionary ideology. When the proletariat, employing Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tse-tung’s thought, irresistibly countered the bourgeois attack and set to work to destroy bourgeois ideology, the clamour you set up about “construction before destruction” was precisely for the purpose of protecting the Rightists and preventing the Left from counter-attacking. It was opposition to the proletarian cultural revolution.
A third “talisman” came under the head of opposing and holding back the growth of “Left scholar-tyrants.”
Whenever the proletarian Left countered bourgeois attacks, the representatives of the bourgeoisie, who wormed their way into the Party and waved “red flags” to oppose the red flag, on the pretext of wanting to be “meticulous” and “profound,” condemned the Left as being “crude” and acting like a “cudgel.” During the present great counter-offensive against bourgeois attacks, they again invoked the “talisman” of opposing and holding back the growth of “Left scholar-tyrants” in a vain attempt to hold the proletarian Left down and suppress it. This would never do. We say that the tag of “scholar-tyrant” fits you bourgeois representatives and “academic authorities” perfectly. You lords who wormed your way into the Party and shielded and backed the bourgeois scholar-tyrants are the big Party-tyrants and scholar-tyrants—tyrants who do not read the newspapers and books, who are divorced from the masses and devoid of knowledge, and who try to overwhelm others by the use of your power. The proletarian Left always insists on the truth of Marxism-Leninism, the truth of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, and relies on scientific contention and evidence in criticizing bourgeois ideology. The proletarian Left has nothing in common with “scholar-tyrants.” We shall enter the lists against the bourgeois “scholar-tyrants” with colours flying and denounce you, the small handful of big Party-tyrants and scholar-tyrants. We tell you lords, who malign the Left as a “cudgel,” that the Left is the steel cudgel, the golden cudgel, of the proletariat. And we shall use this cudgel to smash the old world to smithereens, defeat your handful of big Party-tyrants and scholar-tyrants and destroy your underworld kingdom. This is what is called the dictatorship of the proletariat.
Another “talisman” went by the name of “purely academic discussion.”
In order to cover up the bourgeois Rightist attacks on the Party and socialism and, at the same time, to suppress the counter-attacks of the proletarian Left, the representatives of the bourgeoisie, who wormed their way into the Party and waved “red flags” to oppose the red flag, described the class struggle in the realm of ideology as a “purely academic discussion.” We would ask these lords: Is there really anything academic about Wu Han’s “Hai Jui Scolds the Emperor” and Hai Jui Dismissed From Office and the anti-Party and anti-socialist double-talk of Teng To, Liao Mo-sha and company? The so-called “purely academic discussion” is a fraud the bourgeoisie often plays. There is nothing “purely academic” in class society; everything academic is based on the world outlook of a given class, is subordinate to politics and serves the politics and economy of a given class in one way or another. In the course of our present full-scale counter-offensive, the representatives of the bourgeoisie held up the “talisman” of so-called “purely academic discussion” and opposed putting politics first in order to cover up the vital political issue concerning the anti-Party “Three-Family Village” or “Four Family Village” gangster inns, to put bourgeois politics first and oppose putting proletarian politics first, and to drag this great struggle to the Right and divert it on to a revisionist course.
Still another important “talisman” of theirs was what they called: “Everybody is equal before the truth,” “everyone has his share of erroneous statements” and “it is all a muddle.”
In the course of the proletarian counter-offensive against the bourgeoisie, the representatives of the bourgeoisie, who wormed their way into the Party and waved “red flags” to oppose the red flag, invoked this “talisman,” on the one hand to get their own men to hang on to their positions and not retreat an inch, and on the other hand to create confusion so that they could fish in troubled waters and await an opportunity to counter-attack.
The out-and-out bourgeois slogan of “everybody is equal before the truth” is thoroughly hypocritical. There can be no equality at all between opposing classes. Truth has its class nature. In the present era, the proletariat alone is able to master objective truth because its class interests are in complete conformity with the objective laws. The reactionary and decadent bourgeoisie has long been completely divorced from the truth. Its so-called “truth” can be nothing more than a fallacy that runs counter to the tide of the times and the objective laws. There can be no equality whatsoever between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie, between proletarian ideology and bourgeois ideology, between proletarian truth and bourgeois fallacy. The only question involved is whether the East wind prevails over the West wind or vice versa. Can any equality be permitted on such basic questions as the struggle of the proletariat against the bourgeoisie, the dictatorship of the proletariat over the bourgeoisie, the dictatorship of the proletariat in the sphere of the superstructure including the various fields of culture, and the continual cleansing of the proletarian ranks of representatives of the bourgeoisie who have wormed their way into the Party and wave “red flags” to oppose the red flag? The old social democrats in the decades gone by and the modern revisionists in the past decade and more have never permitted the proletariat to enjoy equality with the bourgeoisie. In bringing up the slogan “everybody is equal before the truth,” the representatives of the bourgeoisie who wormed their way into the Party wanted to bolster up the anti-Party and anti-socialist elements while suppressing the counter-attacks of the Left. We would like to ask these lords: Weren’t you prating about equality with your tongue in your cheek? Why did you withhold from publication articles by the Left, while you permitted the Rightists alone to publish their numerous poisonous weeds? What equality was this? We have to tell you bluntly, we absolutely will not permit you any equality with the proletariat. Our struggle against you is one of life and death. With regard to your kind of anti-Party and anti-socialist gangs, dictatorship is the only thing.
The argument that “everyone has his share of erroneous statements” and “it is all a muddle” was a great conspiracy. We consider that first of all a line of demarcation must be drawn between classes, between revolution and counter-revolution. In the course of understanding objective events, the revolutionary Left may commit one error or another, but these cannot be mentioned in the same breath as the anti-Party, anti-socialist and counter-revolutionary speeches and actions of the bourgeois Rightists; the two things are radically different. In the present great cultural revolution the principal contradiction is the antagonistic one between, on the one hand, the broad masses of the workers, peasants, soldiers, revolutionary cadres and revolutionary intellectuals, and, on the other hand, you the handful of anti-Party and anti-socialist representatives of the bourgeoisie. This is a contradiction between revolution and counter-revolution, an irreconcilable contradiction between the enemy and ourselves. As for your counterrevolutionary speeches and actions, we must subject them all to merciless criticism and sound the call for attack. Bourgeois academic ideas in general must, of course, come under criticism, but that is different from the treatment befitting anti-Party and anti-socialist elements such as you are. In dealing with ordinary bourgeois scholars, we shall go on providing them with suitable conditions of work and let them remould their world outlook in the course of their work, provided they do not oppose the Communist Party and the people. When we hit back at the attacks by the bourgeoisie, the bourgeois representatives who sneaked into our Party set up the clamour about “everyone has his share of erroneous statements” and “it is all a muddle” with no other aim than holding the Left in a light grip, of revenging themselves by creating a great muddle. This was just a waste of effort. We go by Chairman Mao’s guidance and make a distinction between the Left, the middle and the Right; we rely on the Left, combat the Right and win over, unite with and educate the majority so as to carry the great proletarian cultural revolution through to the end.
All these “talismans” of the bourgeois representatives who sneaked into the Party and waved “red flags” to oppose the red flag, were all directed at one goal—the subjection of the proletariat to their dictatorship. They already usurped some leading positions and applied dictatorship over us in various fields of culture. We have to recapture all these positions and overthrow these bourgeois representatives.
A striking feature of the bourgeois representatives who sneaked into the Party is their opposition to the red flag while waving “red flags.”
How can we recognize them? The only way is “to read Chairman Mao’s works, follow his teachings and act on his instructions.”
Mao Tse-tung’s thought is the acme of Marxism-Leninism in the present era, it is living Marxism-Leninism at its highest. The theory and practice of Comrade Mao Tse-tung may be likened to the ceaseless movement of the sun and moon in the skies and the endless flow of the rivers and streams on earth. Comrade Mao Tse-tung’s works are the highest directives for all our work. The watershed between Marxism-Leninism and revisionism, between revolution and counter-revolution, lies in whether one supports Mao Tse-tung’s thought and acts in accordance with it or whether one rejects it and refuses to act in accordance with it.
We endorse and support all that is in keeping with Mao Tse-tung’s thought. We shall fearlessly struggle against and overthrow anybody who opposes Mao Tse-tung’s thought, no matter how high the position he holds and how great the “fame” and “authority” he enjoys.
The representatives of the bourgeoisie who wormed their way into the Party look like a “colossus.” Yet in fact, like all reactionaries, they are only paper tigers.
Mao Tse-tung’s thought is the steering gear, and the workers, peasants and soldiers are the main force in the proletarian cultural revolution. This being so, we can certainly defeat every kind of monsters and win victory after victory in the proletarian cultural revolution.
Maliciously and gleefully, the landlords, rich peasants, counter-revolutionaries, bad elements and Rightists at home and the imperialists and revisionists abroad think that they can gain some advantage while we are unmasking and criticizing the anti-Party “Three-Family Village” gang. We have to tell the reactionaries at home and abroad that they are as stupid as a donkey. The exact purpose of unmasking the anti-Party “Three-Family Village” gang, subjecting them to criticism and sweeping away all the monsters is to eliminate your agents within our Party and our country and remove the “time-bomb” on which you place your hopes. As the great proletarian cultural revolution develops in depth, we shall implant Mao Tse-tung’s thought still more firmly among the people all over the country and completely dig out the roots of revisionism and of the restoration of capitalism. History will ruthlessly deride you silly donkeys.
The reactionaries at home and abroad have spread the lie that we are attacking all intellectuals. This is nonsense. China’s great proletarian cultural revolution is directed against a handful of evil men who put up the signboard of communism behind which they peddled their anti-communist wares; it is directed against a handful of anti-Party, anti-socialist and counter-revolutionary bourgeois intellectuals. With regard to the great number of intellectuals who came over from the old society, our policy is to unite with them, educate and remould them. And the ranks of the proletarian intellectuals are steadily growing in the course of the great cultural revolution.
Revolutionary people, let us all unite still more closely on the basis of Mao Tse-tung’s thought!
Holding high the great red banner of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, and the great red banner of the proletarian cultural revolution, let us go forward in triumph!
Long live the great proletarian cultural revolution!
(“Hongqi” editorial. No. 8, 1966.)
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