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AUSTRALIAN
MARXIST
REVIEW

Journal of the Communist Party of Australia

ISSUE 63December 2016

The task of our time

Speech to the 7th World Socialism Forum 2016

In 1949, just months before the founding of the Peoples’ Republic of China, Mao Zedong accurately identified the basic attitude of Imperialism towards China. He said: “The imperialists and their running dogs, the Chinese reactionaries, will not resign themselves to defeat in this land of China.” “Make trouble, fail, make trouble again, fail again ... till their doom; that is the logic of the imperialists and all reactionaries the world over in dealing with the people’s cause, and they will never go against this logic. This is a Marxist law.”[1] Mao Zedong’s analysis has been proven by over sixty years of US crimes against the people of the world.

From their support of the corrupt Nationalist Party during the Chinese Civil War, their prevention of Taiwan’s reunification with China during the ’50s, their bombing of China during the Korean War and their continued sales of weapons to Taiwan; US Imperialism has never been afraid to provoke China or use military force against it.

Richard Nixon’s visit to China and the following, apparent softening of US policy was not an abandonment of hostility towards Chinese socialism. It was a new strategy for its destruction. According to a Wall Street Journal article: “Nixon engineered an ‘opening to China’ that promised to turn the communist country into a diplomatic partner, one that would adopt America’s values and maybe even its system of democracy.” [2]

Jiao Shixin of the Institute for China-American Studies said that the strategic goal or intention behind the US engagement strategy has been to shape China by bringing it into an international system and international order that is dominated by the US, and then pressure China to conform to America’s vision for it.[3]

In other words, the goal of US Imperialism remained the same: to destroy Socialism, the peoples’ government and the Communist Party of China.

US Imperialism is dedicated to ensuring that no force in the world, regardless of intentions, will ever be powerful enough to challenge the rule of Capital. In 1992, an internal Pentagon report was leaked to the New York Times. The report stated: “America’s political and military mission in the post-cold-war era will be to insure that no rival superpower is allowed to emerge” [4]. It advocated the use of military force or other forms of coercion to block any potential competitor. Today, that competitor is China.

The military provocation and aggression of the past has been combined with the “engagement” of the Nixon era to form a powerful new anti-Chinese weapon, the use of which the US justifies with the “China Threat Theory”. It is now actively engaged in an anti-Chinese campaign in the Pacific which involves provoking military conflict, encircling China with hostile powers and preparing the peoples of the world for war through anti-Chinese propaganda.

Former Chinese leader Hu Jintao demonstrated this situation clearly when he said: “America’s strategic eastward movement has accelerated. It has strengthened its military deployments in the Asia-Pacific region, strengthened the US-Japan military alliance, strengthened strategic cooperation with India, inveigled Pakistan, established a pro-American government in Afghanistan and increased arms sales to Taiwan. They have extended pressure points on us from the east, south and west ... the core of American policy toward China is still to ‘engage and contain.” [5]

Hypocrisy is the theme of US policy, statements and media coverage relating to China. When China announced it would establish an Air Defence Identification Zone, the US and its allies protested loudly despite the fact that the US, Australia and Japan all have such zones. Shortly after its establishment, warplanes of the US, Japan and South Korea all violated the Chinese ADIF.

When Vietnam and the Philippines engaged in land reclamation on South China Sea islands, there was no comment from the US. Obama called for an end to China’s “Aggressive Action”[6] when artillery was placed on Chinese islands, but he was silent when Vietnam did the same thing.

At the Shangri-La Dialogue last year, US Defence Secretary Ash Carter criticised China as the “source of tension” and opposed further militarisation of the region. He then went on to say that the US will invest more in “platforms and capabilities” [7], meaning weapons, and bring those to Asia. So in effect, they are opposed to any militarisation besides their own! In fact, according to the Wall Street Journal, Obama’s pivot to Asia has brought: “Advanced American combat ships to Singapore, Marines to Australia and military advisers to the Philippines” [8]. Japan has also been encouraged to abandon its peace constitution and re-arm.

Comrades, the imperialists have held the same goal since 1917, the destruction of the Socialist countries and the re-enslavement of liberated peoples. There is no point trying to convince US leaders that cooperating with a rising China is mutually beneficial. As Li Ruihuan, former Standing Committee Member of the CPC once said: “The United States is very clear about our power. It knows that China today is not a direct threat to the United States ... they want to contain us ... It’s useless for us to use a lot of words to refute their ‘China threat theory’. The Americans won’t listen.” [9]

So what can we do to defend Socialism in China? The answer is to build the world socialist movement, strengthen communist parties around the world and improve their ability to form the core of a strong peace movement to oppose imperialist policy.

Comrade Bob Briton has already spoken to us about this and the successes of communist parties of the capitalist countries in forcing their governments to soften their anti-people policies.

Instead, I want to give comrades a valuable history lesson.

In 1940, Zhou Enlai wrote a letter to Georgi Dimitrov, leader of the Third International. In his letter, Zhou Enlai explained the difficult financial situation of the CPC, telling Dimitrov that they had a monthly deficit of $50,000 in propaganda and education expenses! Dimitrov wrote to Stalin, suggesting that the money should be provided because it was vital to support the Chinese propaganda, party press and network of Party schools. Stalin personally authorised a payment of $300,000 [10]. In 1940 alone, Soviet generosity paid for 6 months of CPC political work. Without this aid, Chinese party schools would have stopped functioning, the party press would have halted and propaganda would have slowed or been reduced in quality. Just imagine the horrible effect that would have on party work at such a vital time!

Soviet Aid in the form of advisors, training and funding helped communist parties all over the world to achieve critical mass. With this boost, communist parties were able to build enough domestic strength to become self-supporting, to become significant political forces in their own countries and in some cases to take political power for themselves.

This historical lesson should be heeded by Chinese comrades. If you want to escape the US encirclement that is threatening to choke the life out of China then you should do everything in your power to help the communist parties of the capitalist world. Help them reach a critical mass so that they can stop their own governments from attacking China, and stop their fellow citizens being brainwashed by anti-Chinese propaganda.

In 1939, Comrade Liu Shaoqi said: “The communist ideal is beautiful, while the reality of the existing capitalist world is ugly. This is precisely why the overwhelming majority of the people demand the changing of that reality and why it must be changed. In order to change the world we must not divorce ourselves from reality, disregard it or escape from it, nor must we surrender to ugly reality. We must face reality squarely, study and understand it, live and grow in it, fight against the ugly reality and transform it, so that we can gradually realise our ideal. Hence we members of the communist Party must initiate and press ahead with our great communist task of changing the world, beginning with our immediate surroundings, with the people immediately around us and such work as we can immediately undertake.” [11]

Comrades, this is our situation today, these are the people around us and supporting the communist parties of the capitalist world in defence of China is something each one of us can work for right now! Let’s do it!


[1] Mao, Zedong. “Cast Away Illusions, Prepare For Struggle.” Marxists.org. N.p., 14 Aug. 1949. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.

[2] Browne, Andrew. “Can China Be Contained?” The Wall Street Journal. N.p., 12 June 2015. Web. 9 Sept. 2016.

[3] Jiao, Shixin. “The Problem with American ‘Engagement’ with China.” Institute for China-America Studies. Institute for China-America Studies, 29 Sept. 2015. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.

[4] Tyler, Patrick E. “US Strategy Plan Calls for Insuring No Rivals Develop.” The New York Times. N.p., 8 Mar. 1992. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.

[5] Nation, Andrew J., and Bruce Gilley. China’s New Rulers: The Secret Files. 2nd ed. New York: New York Review of, 2003. Print.

[6] Blair, David. “Barack Obama Calls on China to End ‘aggressive’ Actions in South China Sea.” The Telegraph. N.p., 1 June 2015. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.

[7] Carter, Ash. “A Regional Security Architecture Where Everyone Rises.” IISS Shangri-La Dialogue. www.defense.gov/News/Speeches/Article/606676, Singapore. 09 Sept. 2016. Speech.

[8] Browne, Andrew. “Can China Be Contained?” The Wall Street Journal. N.p., 12 June 2015. Web. 9 Sept. 2016.

[9] Nation, Andrew J., and Bruce Gilley. China’s New Rulers: The Secret Files. 2nd ed. New York: New York Review of, 2003. Print.

[10] Dallin, Alexander, and Fridrikh I. Frisov. Dimitrov and Stalin: 1934-1943 : Letters from the Soviet Archives. N.p.: Yale UP, 2000. Print.

[11] Liu, Shaoqi. “How to Be a Good Communist.” Marxists.org. N.p., July. 1939. Web. 7 Sept. 2016.

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