Friday, July 2, 2021

Vox Popoli: A century of Communist rule

Xi Jinping's speech on the centenary of the Chinese Communist Party:

The Chinese nation is a great nation. With a history of more than 5,000 years, China has made indelible contributions to the progress of human civilization. After the Opium War of 1840, however, China was gradually reduced to a semi-colonial, semi-feudal society and suffered greater ravages than ever before. The country endured intense humiliation, the people were subjected to great pain, and the Chinese civilization was plunged into darkness. Since that time, national rejuvenation has been the greatest dream of the Chinese people and the Chinese nation.

To save the nation from peril, the Chinese people put up a courageous fight. As noble-minded patriots sought to pull the nation together, the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom Movement, the Reform Movement of 1898, the Yihetuan Movement, and the Revolution of 1911 rose one after the other, and a variety of plans were devised to ensure national survival, but all of these ended in failure. China was in urgent need of new ideas to lead the movement to save the nation and a new organization to rally revolutionary forces.

With the salvoes of Russia's October Revolution in 1917, Marxism-Leninism was brought to China. Then in 1921, as the Chinese people and the Chinese nation were undergoing a great awakening and Marxism-Leninism was becoming closely integrated with the Chinese workers' movement, the Communist Party of China was born. The founding of a communist party in China was an epoch-making event, which profoundly changed the course of Chinese history in modern times, transformed the future of the Chinese people and nation, and altered the landscape of world development.

Since the very day of its founding, the Party has made seeking happiness for the Chinese people and rejuvenation for the Chinese nation its aspiration and mission. All the struggle, sacrifice, and creation through which the Party has united and led the Chinese people over the past hundred years has been tied together by one ultimate theme-bringing about the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

To realize national rejuvenation, the Party united and led the Chinese people in fighting bloody battles with unyielding determination, achieving great success in the new-democratic revolution.

Through the Northern Expedition, the Agrarian Revolutionary War, the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression, and the War of Liberation, we fought armed counter-revolution with armed revolution, toppling the three mountains of imperialism, feudalism, and bureaucrat-capitalism and establishing the People's Republic of China, which made the people masters of the country. We thus secured our nation's independence and liberated our people.

The victory of the new-democratic revolution put an end to China's history as a semi-colonial, semi-feudal society, to the state of total disunity that existed in old China, and to all the unequal treaties imposed on our country by foreign powers and all the privileges that imperialist powers enjoyed in China. It created the fundamental social conditions for realizing national rejuvenation.

Through tenacious struggle, the Party and the Chinese people showed the world that the Chinese people had stood up, and that the time in which the Chinese nation could be bullied and abused by others was gone forever.

Never forget that the adjective modifies the noun. The operative word in the phrase "Chinese Communist" is "Chinese". If one compares the original Communist Manifesto with the Three Represents and the 14 Points of the Xi Jinping Thought, it soon becomes clear that China is considerably less genuinely communist in the original Marxian sense than the United States is now. This makes sense, contra the mainstream narrative, because the US is presently ruled by the intellectual heirs of Leon Trotsky.

Furthermore, it should be noted that the literal translation of "Communist Party" into Western political terms is United Production Party. The correct emphasis is upon the Chinese concepts that underlie the translation, not the nineteenth-century label for a failed economic philosophy, especially given the fact that China was not an advanced capitalist society facing a crisis of capitalism. 

Both Putin and Xi have made it clear that the post-Cold War period of the USA as the one global superpower are over. Russia survived the financial occupation that followed its defeat and China won its unrestricted war with the US empire by avoiding the military conflict that would have ensured its defeat.

But empires seldom fall easily, which is why these are perilous times.