100 years of the Chinese Communist Party
Mick Kelly is a member of the Standing Committee of the Central Committee of the socialist organization Freedom Road and is responsible for the organization’s international relations. The following essay appeared in the book, A century of the Chinese Communist Party, Statements by 100 foreign communists, published by the Contemporary China publishing house.
This July 2021 marks a worldwide historic occasion, the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). This is an event of real significance to progressives, revolutionaries and communists around the world, including those of us in the United States. China’s rich experience in defeating Western and Japanese imperialism, eliminating feudalism and building a socialist society is of interest to all who hope and work for a bright future.
The Chinese people once had three huge mountains on their backs: imperialism, feudalism and bureaucratic capitalism. The CCP has led the Chinese people to eliminate these burdens. Old China, beset by the plague of foreign imperialists, warlords and the parasitic landlord class, was a nightmare of famine and subjugation. It was a society unable to save itself and powerless in the face of adversity.
The British fought a war for the “right” to sell opium and claimed the city of Hong Kong as their own. The United States and other Western powers occupied Beijing in 1900, looting works of art, torching historic buildings and mutilating the bodies of those they murdered – to offer an “open door” to exploit the land, labor and resources of the Chinese people. In Shanghai, foreigners had their own park and they put up a sign “No dogs or Chinese allowed”. Adding insult to injury, they took on the mantle of “standard bearer of civilization”. New China, China led by the CCP and supported by other patriotic forces has put an end to this.
Standing on the podium in Tiananmen Square in Beijing in 1949, prominent Marxist-Leninist Mao Zedong proclaimed, “The Chinese have risen,” and the much-needed work of building a modern socialist country has begun.
Here in the United States, the importance of the Chinese revolution and the positive example provided by socialism stand out clearly. As the number of poor people increase in the United States and the standard of living and the speed of living decline, the People’s Republic of China is eliminating poverty. Under the leadership of the CCP, China has waged a people’s war against the COVID-19 pandemic and brought the crisis under control. Compare that with the United States, where a combination of the criminal government’s mismanagement of the pandemic combined with a health care system that exists only for the highest rate of profit, has made more than one point. half a million dead. And every day that number grows.
Anyone who takes the point of view of the working class and the broad popular masses as a whole cannot help but conclude that monopoly capitalism is a broken system that exists to serve the few at the expense of the many.
CPC is a successful organizer and problem solver
The commitment to apply the living science of Marxism, or scientific socialism, to the realities of Chinese society is essential to China’s many successes. This includes maintaining the leading role of the CCP and adhering to the path of building socialism with characteristics that meet China’s needs. By all accounts, the results have been spectacular. For example, the economy of the People’s China has grown every year since 1949. Socialism has repeatedly proven its superiority. On the other hand, Western economies, including the United States, are subject to periodic crises of overproduction, where industries are closed, factories closed, and working-class communities are devastated. Whether tackling the issue of land reform, national development issues, or contributions to the world stage, communists around the world have a lot to learn.
China, like the United States, has many nationalities. China promotes equality and mutual respect among its different nationalities, and the CCP leaders have taken many positive steps, such as supporting the liberation of Tibetans from serfdom. Compare that with Washington’s dismal human rights record, or with the oppression suffered by the African American people, who face a systematic inequality imposed by police terror. This is why a major uprising rocked the United States after the murder of George Floyd. The American people are fed up with racist discrimination and growing anger. Monopoly capitalism never solves problems, it causes them.
Even before taking political power at the national level in 1949, the CCP had made great contributions to the world revolutionary process. By undertaking the united national front against Japan, China and the Soviet Union largely contributed to the defeat of the fascist powers. The CCP has also developed a Marxist-Leninist thought on the problems of national liberation, party building, the need for the people to have their own armed forces, and the need to unite all who can unite in one. broad united front for liberation.
Evaluating the process that led to the establishment of the Communist Party and the important role the Party played, Xi Jinping correctly stated at the 9th CPC National Congress:
“A hundred years ago, the salvos of the October Revolution brought Marxism-Leninism to China. In the scientific truth of Marxism-Leninism, Chinese progressives saw a solution to China’s problems. With the advent of modern times, Chinese society is plunged into intense upheaval; it was a period of bitter struggle as the Chinese people resisted feudal rule and foreign aggression. It was in the midst of this, in 1921, as Marxism-Leninism was integrated into the Chinese workers’ movement, that the Chinese Communist Party was born. From that moment on, the Chinese people had in the Party a backbone for their pursuit of national independence and liberation, a stronger and more prosperous country, and their own happiness; and the mindset of the Chinese people changed from passivity to taking initiative.
We cannot say that the CPC never made any errors, because that would be deviating from the facts. However, the CCP has long put forward the idea that “practice is the only standard of truth,” which allowed the Chinese Communists to resolve issues in a timely manner, and by far the main one.
Every person and every political party sometimes makes mistakes. How could it be otherwise? However, it is about being good at summarizing your practice and having clear criteria to distinguish right from wrong. For example, from the mid to late 1980s certain forces emerged in China that were hostile to socialism. With the support of the West, they opposed the socialist path and declared that “the moon shines brighter in the West”. Ultimately, the CCP was able to tackle these issues, overcome the challenges posed by the destructive forces, maintain the party’s leading role in society, and continue on the path of socialist development.
All this contrasts favorably with the setbacks that have affected some of the socialist countries. From the late 1950s, the leaders of the USSR moved away from Marxism-Leninism, then split the world communist movement and allowed corruption to separate the leaders of the Communist Party from the Union. Soviet (CPSU) workers. This same process repeated itself in the socialist countries of Eastern Europe. Ultimately, socialism was destroyed from within by hostile class forces – with the voluntary help of the Western imperial powers. The peoples of the USSR and Europe have discovered through their own bitter experience what happens when capitalism wins. The result was hunger, degradation and wars. The achievements won by the heroic contributions of the working class and the peasantry vanished in an assault of reaction. In what used to be the USSR, millions of people want socialism to return.
This experience should remind communists around the world that they understand the great value of what we have, that socialist countries are to be cherished and that the differences between capitalism and socialism as well as between the correct and the incorrect, good and evil must be clarified.
In the United States, there are quite a few leftists who reject dialectical and historical materialism, and have instead adopted the point of view of subjective idealism. They are of the opinion that if a socialist country is not exactly as they want it to be, then it is not a socialist. This is false and contrary to reality.
China and the world
The world is a better place for the existence of the People’s China and the CCP. The victory of the Chinese revolution transformed the world. Suddenly a quarter of humanity freed itself from the yoke of imperialism, took the socialist path and set out on the path to a classless society: communism. This development alone has changed the balance of world forces and considerably weakened the position of the imperialist powers.
In 1949, the world was a different place. Much of the globe was ruled by colonial powers who dominated the lives of hundreds of millions of people in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East. The Chinese revolution gave tremendous energy to the struggle to end colonialism and neo-colonialism. He paved the way for victory in Vietnam, Cuba and many other places. People everywhere want to be free to determine their own destiny. China’s example, and sometimes material assistance, has been a major factor in the struggle for independence and national liberation.
Today, the continued existence of the People’s Republic of China, along with other socialist countries, is an important factor in the world communist movement and sheds light on the prospects for socialism on a world scale. It is a good thing that there is an alternative to imperialism.
Here in the United States, all of the contradictions in society are heightened as the decline of imperialism accelerates. Every day more and more people see socialism as a potential solution to our problems.
A number of leaders of the Freedom Road Socialist Organization visited China decades ago, and we look forward to forging closer relations with the CCP. Marxism-Leninism has done great things for the Chinese people. It will be the same for the American people. Together, the people of the world can accomplish great things.
While China and the CCP have worked tirelessly for world peace, the same cannot be said of the Wall Street and Pentagon leaders who say China is a strategic competitor and talk about war. This is something we will always oppose. FRSO fully understands that socialist China wants peace, and we oppose every act of our government that is detrimental to that end.
The people of the United States, China and around the world have a common destiny. What happens to one of us impacts us all. We can stand together for a socialist tomorrow. It’s a day that’s sure to come.