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Sum Up Experience in Strengthening Party Leadership

Editorial by ”Renmin Ribao,” ”Hongqi” and ”Jiefangjun Bao”

[This article is reprinted from Peking Review, #50, Dec. 10, 1971, pp. 4-5.]

IN line with the great leader Chairman Mao’s instructions “Read and study seriously and have a good grasp of Marxism” and “Carry out education in ideology and political line,” the whole Party has unfolded a movement for criticizing revisionism and rectifying the style of work and deepened it step by step since the Second Plenary Session of the Ninth Central Committee of the Party. The movement has attained marked results and achieved great victory. By seriously reading works by Marx, Lenin and Chairman Mao, the masses of Party members, and particularly senior Party cadres, have heightened their consciousness of class struggle and the struggle between the two lines and of continuing the revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat, and have gone a step further in exposing and criticizing such swindlers as Liu Shao-chi. New Party committees at various levels have generally been established and the struggle-criticism-transformation in the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution is developing in depth. Rallying all the more closely round the Party Central Committee headed by Chairman Mao and advancing along the line of unity for victory of the Ninth National Congress of the Party, the whole Party, the whole army and the people of the whole country have continued to win new successes in the socialist revolution and socialist construction.

The Communique of the Second Plenary Session of the Party’s Ninth Central Committee called for strengthening Party building and ”giving further play to the leading role of the vanguard of the proletariat.” In the past year and more, the whole Party has done a great deal of work in accordance with Chairman Mao’s line for Party building. The present domestic and international situation is very fine. In order to fulfil our Party’s glorious tasks still better the Party committees at all levels must sum up their experience in earnest so as to continue to strengthen Party leadership over all kinds of work.

What are the main questions to be stressed in strengthening Party leadership?

It is imperative to strengthen Party concept. Chairman Mao teaches us: “The Chinese Communist Party is the core of leadership of the whole Chinese people. Without this core, the cause of socialism cannot he victorious.” Our Party is the vanguard of the proletariat it is the highest form of class organization of the proletariat. Of the seven—industry, agriculture, commerce, culture and education, the army, the government and the Party—the Party gives leadership to the first six. Party conunittees at all levels should exercise centralized leadership in all fields of work in accordance with the Party’s line and policies and, for the purpose of consolidating the dictatorship of the proletariat, strive to unite the revolutionary masses and unite all the forces that can be united so as to give fuller play to the role of the vanguard of the proletariat as the core. Chairman Mao regards Party building as one of the three principal magic weapons for the Chinese revolution and helping to strengthen, and not discard or weaken, the leadership of the Communist Party as one of the most important political criteria for distinguishing fragrant flowers from poisonous weeds. In the complicated class struggle and the struggle between the two lines, every Party member and every revolutionary must firmly bear in mind Chairman Mao’s teaching: “We must have faith in the masses and we must have faith in the Party. These are two cardinal principles. If we doubt these principles, we shall accomplish nothing.” It is especially necessary for members of Party committees at all levels to strengthen Party concept and place themselves within the Party committee and not outside it, still less above it.

It is imperative to carry on education in ideology and political line in a deep-going way. Chairman Mao has pointed out on many occasions: The correctness or incorrectness of the ideological and political line decides everything. Policies are the concrete embodiment of a political line. Fundamentally, strengthening Party leadership means the firm implementation of Chairman Mao’s proletarian revolutionary line and policies. The history of inner-Party struggle between the two lines shows that the representatives of the bourgeoisie always change their tactics in an attempt to substitute their opportunist line and policies for the Party’s Marxist-Leninist line and policies and substitute their bourgeois programme for the Party’s proletarian programme, and thus to bring about a change in the character of the Party, turning it from a proletarian into a bourgeois Party, and achieve their criminal aim of liquidating Party leadership and undermining the Chinese revolution. This is an inevitable reflection of the class struggle in society. Under the guidance of Chairman Mao’s correct line and proletarian policies, our Party is growing more consolidated and stronger in the storms of class struggle. Neither imperialism, nor social-imperialism, nor revisionism within our Party has been able to defeat us. On the contrary, every triumph of the correct line over the incorrect line has dealt heavy blows at the enemies at home and abroad, brought about still greater victories in the revolutionary cause and enabled our Party to become stronger, more united and thriving. This is the conclusion drawn by history.

It is imperative to strengthen the unity of the Party. Chairman Mao has all along stressed the importance of being able at uniting with the great majority and regarded the unity of the Party as the most essential factor in winning victory in the revolution and construction. Had it not been for the correct principle of unity of the Seventh Party Congress, the new democratic revolution could not have achieved victory. And had it not been for the line of unity for victory of the Ninth Party Congress, the fruits of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution could not have been consolidated and developed. Opportunism in politics is, organizationally, inevitably accompanied by the mountain-stronghold mentality, sectarianism and splittism. History does not lack such lessons. Chen Tu-hsiu’s patriarchism, Chu Chiu-pai’s punitiveness, Li Li-san’s ”my word is law,” Wang Ming’s ”ruthless struggles and merciless blows,” Chang Kuo-tao’s splittism and warlordism, and the ”striking at many in order to protect a handful” practised by Liu Shao-chi and other swindlers like him have all caused tremendous harm to the unity and unification of the Party. In his struggle against opportunist lines, Chairman Mao set forth the principles of “unity, criticism, unity” and “learn from past mistakes to avoid future ones and cure the sickness to save the patient.” Only by implementing these principles is it possible to educate the cadres and strengthen the unity of the Party on the basis of the principles of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought. Hidden anti-Party and anti-socialist counterrevolutionaries are very few in number. The overwhelming majority of good people who committed mistakes in political line are able to return to the correct line through criticism and self-criticism.

Be open and above-board. Chairman Mao pointed out long ago: “We Communists have always disdained to conceal our views.” All Party comrades, and it goes without saying for senior Party cadres, must be frank and forthright politically. At all times one ought to state one’s political views openly and, on every important political issue, express one’s position, either for or against, adhering to what is right and correcting what is wrong. This is a question of the Party’s style of work and of Party spirit. As chieftains of opportunist lines are engaged in splitting activities, they are bound to resort to conspiracies, and intrigues. In his famous talk in 1964 on bringing up successors, Chairman Mao pointed out: “Beware of those who engage in intrigue and conspiracy. For instance, men like Kao Kang, Jao Shu-shih, Peng Teh-huai and Huang Ke-cheng were to be found in the Central Committee. Everything divides into two. Some persons are dead set on conspiring. They want to do this, so that’s that—even now there are such persons at it! That there are persons conspiring is an objective fact and not a question of whether we like it or not.” In our Party’s history, those bourgeois careerists, conspirators and persons having illicit relations with foreign countries, who clung to opportunist lines and engaged in conspiracies, could not but bring ruin, disgrace and destruction upon themselves in the end.

It is imperative to strengthen the sense of discipline. Discipline is the guarantee for the implementation of the line. In summing up our Party’s struggle against Chang Kuo-tao’s opportunist line, Chairman Mao pointed out: “Some people violate Party discipline through not knowing what it is, while others, like Chang Kuo-tao, violate it knowingly and take advantage of many Party members’ ignorance to achieve their treacherous purposes. Hence it is necessary to educate members in Party discipline so that the rank and file will not only observe discipline themselves, but will exercise supervision over the leaders so that they, too, observe it, thus preventing the recurrence of cases like Chang Kuo-tao’s.” We must bear firmly in mind this historical experience, resolutely carry out the Party’s unified discipline stipulated in the Party Constitution and resolutely carry out ”The Three Main Rules of Discipline and the Eight Points for Attention” formulated by Chairman Mao. It is necessary to learn and sing well The Internationale and the song The Three Main Rules of Discipline and the Eight Points for Attention and “educate the cadres, the masses, the Party members and the people in the Three Main Rules of Discipline and the Eight Points for Attention.”

It is imperative to practise Marxism-Leninism, and not revisionism. To practise Marxism or to practise revisionism? The struggles between the two lines within our Party in the final analysis, boil down to this question. Why is it that some people are fooled and taken in during the struggle between the two lines? The fundamental reason is that they do not read and study seriously and cannot distinguish materialism from idealism and the Marxist line from the opportunist line. This is an extremely profound lesson. Comrades throughout the Party, senior Party cadres in particular, must follow Chairman Mao’s teachings, continuously persist in reading and studying seriously, have a good grasp of Marxism, consciously remould their world outlook, combine study with revolutionary mass criticism, constantly raise their ability to distinguish between genuine and sham Marxism and carry out Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line ever more consciously.

The Chinese Communist Party with Comrade Mao Tsetung as its leader is a great, glorious and correct Party. Through positive and negative examples, the previous struggles between the two lines have enabled us to understand ever more deeply that Chairman Mao’s leadership means the greatest happiness for the whole Party, the whole army and the people of the whole country, and that Chairman Mao’s proletarian revolutionary line is the life-blood of the whole Party, the whole army and the people of the whole country. Under the leadership of the Party Central Committee headed by Chairman Mao and along Chairman Mao’s proletarian revolutionary line, let us unite to win still greater victories!

(December 1)

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