1966 - The Whole Country Should Become a Great School of Mao Tse-tung’s Thought

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— In Commemoration of the 39th Anniversary of the

Founding of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army


FULL 39 years have elapsed since the founding of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army.

This great people’s army founded by Comrade Mao Tse-tung himself and directly led by him has always maintained and carried forward the glorious tradition of being “at the same time a fighting force, a working force and a production force” throughout the past decades — both in the protracted and arduous fighting against the class enemy at home and abroad during the years of revolutionary wars, and, since the nationwide victory, in the course of shouldering the task of defending and building up the socialist motherland and safeguarding peace in the Far East and the whole world. In recent years, in accordance with the instructions of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party, the Military Commission of the Party’s Central Committee and Comrade Lin Piao, the Liberation Army has held aloft the great red banner of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, undertaken the creative study and application of Chairman Mao’s works, vigorously given prominence to proletarian politics, developed the “three-eight” working style,* participated in the socialist education movement and the great proletarian cultural revolution, taken part and helped in socialist construction, and made another big stride forward along the road to becoming an even more highly proletarianized, revolutionized and militant army.

The masses of people in our country have always seen the Liberation Army as an example from which to learn. Since 1964, in response to the great call of Comrade Mao Tse-tung, the people throughout the country have set going an enthusiastic movement for learning in a big way from the Liberation Army. This has played a tremendous role in advancing our country’s socialist revolution and socialist construction.

Comrade Mao Tse-tung recently pointed out: The People’s Liberation Army should be a great school. In this great school, our armymen should learn politics, military affairs and culture. They can also engage in agricultural production and side occupations, run some medium-sized or small factories and manufacture a number of products to meet their own needs or for exchange with the state at equal values. They can also do mass work and take part in the socialist education movement in the factories and villages. After the socialist education movement is over, they can always find mass work to do, so that the army will for ever be at one with the masses. They should also participate in the struggles of the cultural revolution to criticize the bourgeoisie whenever they occur. In this way, the army can concurrently study, engage in agriculture, run factories and do mass work. Of course, these tasks should be properly co-ordinated, and a distinction should be made between the primary and secondary tasks. Each army unit should engage in one or two of the three fields of activity — agriculture, industry and mass work, but not in all three at the same time. In this way, our army of several million will he able to play a very great role indeed.

It has been Comrade Mao Tse-tung’s consistent idea that the people’s army should be run as a great school of revolution. We did so in the past. Now, in the light of the new conditions, Comrade Mao Tse-tung has put higher demands on the Liberation Army.

Comrade Mao Tse-tung has called on the people of the whole country to turn China’s factories, rural people’s communes, schools, trading undertakings, service trades and Party and government organizations into great schools for revolutionization like the Liberation Army.

Comrade Mao Tse-tung has pointed out:

While the main activity of the workers is in industry, they should at the same time also study military affairs, politics and culture. They, too, should take part in the socialist education movement and in criticizing the bourgeoisie. Where conditions permit, they should also engage in agricultural production and side occupations, as is done at the Taching Oilfield.

While the main activity of the peasants in the communes is in agriculture (including forestry, animal husbandry, side occupations and fisheries), they, too, should at the same time study military affairs, politics and culture. Where conditions permit, they should also collectively run some small factories. They should also criticize the bourgeoisie.

This holds good for students too. While their main task is to study, they should in addition to their studies, learn other things, that is, industrial work, farming and military affairs. They should also criticize the bourgeoisie. The period of schooling should be shortened, education should be revolutionized, and the domination of our schools by bourgeois intellectuals should by no means be allowed to continue.

Where conditions permit, those working in commerce, in the service trades and in Party and government organizations should also do the same.

This brilliant idea of Comrade Mao Tse-tung is of great historic significance.

Comrade Mao Tse-tung has summed up all of China’s experience in socialist revolution and socialist construction, studied all the experience of the international proletarian revolution and the dictatorship of the proletariat since the October Revolution, in particular drawing serious lessons from the carrying out of the restoration of capitalism by the Khrushchev revisionist clique in the Soviet Union, and has creatively provided the scientific answers to the questions of how to prevent a restoration of capitalism, consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat and guarantee the gradual transition to communism.

The idea set forth by Comrade Mao Tse-tung that every field of work should be made Into a great school for revolutionization, where people take part both in industry and agriculture, in military as well as civilian affairs — such is our programme.

By acting in accordance with what Comrade Mao Tse-tung has said, it will be possible to elevate the proletarian ideology of our people very considerably, push forward the revolutionization of people’s thinking, and help them to break away from all the old ideology, culture, customs and habits surviving from the old society. Hence it will be possible to build socialism with still greater, faster, better and more economical results, and more quickly root out the social and ideological bases for capitalism and revisionism.

By acting in accordance with what Comrade Mao Tse-tung has said, it will be possible to promote the step-by-step narrowing of the gap between workers and peasants, town and countryside and mental and manual labour; to prevent abnormal urban and industrial development; to enable intellectuals to become at the same time manual workers and manual workers at the same time intellectuals; and to train hundreds of millions of new communist people who have a high degree of political consciousness and are developed in an all-round way.

By acting in accordance with what Comrade Mao Tse-tung has said, it will be possible to turn all the people into soldiers and greatly strengthen our combat preparedness. Should imperialism dare to invade us, it will be drowned in the great ocean of people’s war.

By acting in accordance with what Comrade Mao Tse-tung has said, the 700 million people of our country will all become critics of the old world as well as builders and defenders of the new world. With hammer in hand they will be able to do factory work, with hoe, plough or harrow they will be able to do farming, with the gun they will be able to fight the enemy, and with the pen they will be able to express themselves in writing.

In this way, the whole country will be a great school of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, a great school of communism.

It is in accordance with this idea of Comrade Mao Tse-tung that the Chinese People’s Liberation Army has worked in the last few decades and is still continuously developing and improving itself. The Liberation Army is the best great school for studying Mao Tse-tung’s thought. All factories, rural people’s communes, schools, shops, service trades, and Party and government organizations in the country must follow the example set by the Liberation Army and turn themselves into great schools of Mao Tse-tung’s thought.

The broad masses of the workers, peasants and soldiers, the revolutionary cadres and revolutionary intellectuals, and all members of the Communist Party should draw inexhaustible strength, wisdom and courage from this brilliant instruction of Comrade Mao Tse-tung, and struggle to fulfil the great historic task put forward by the Party and Comrade Mao Tse-tung.

(“Remnin Ribao” editorial, August 1.)