1967 - Young Revolutionary Fighters of Long March Detachments Gather to Exchange Experience
Over 100,000 Red Guards and revolutionary teachers and students, who had travelled on foot all the way from various parts of the country to Peking, held a rally in the capital’s Workers’ Stadium on December 28 to exchange revolutionary experience and to celebrate the great victory of their experimental long marches conducted under the guidance of Mao Tse-tung’s thought. Among those who attended were leaders of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party Chou En-lai, Kang Sheng, Li Fu-chun and leading members of other departments.
Chou En-lai and these other comrades arrived at the stadium at 12:30 p.m. They sang The East Is Red together with all the Red Guards and revolutionary teachers and students. Then, riding in open cars, they drove slowly along the oval track to greet all the members of the long march detachments. The whole stadium rang with cheers; again and again the young revolutionary fighters shouted: “Long live Chairman Mao!” “Long live the great proletarian cultural revolution!” “We vow to defend the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao!” Comrade Chou En-lai and the others waved their copies of Quotations From Chairman Mao Tse-tung and shouted in unison: “Long live our most respected and beloved great leader Chairman Mao! Long, long life to him!”
A representative of the rally’s presidium delivered the opening address after it started. He quoted the teaching of the Chinese people’s most respected and beloved great leader Chairman Mao that “successors to the proletarian revolutionary cause emerge in mass struggles and grow up by tempering themselves in great revolutionary storms.” He said that they had made their long marches in accordance with this great teaching of Chairman Mao’s and added that their success was a victory for Mao Tse-tung’s thought. He also said that it was only the first step in their 10,000-li long march. He pledged that they would hold the great red banner of Mao Tse-tung’s thought still higher, creatively study and apply Chairman Mao’s works, be modest and prudent, guard against arrogance and rashness, continue to adhere to the style of hard work and arduous struggle, fear no sacrifice, surmount every difficulty and forge ahead to win fresh victories for the great proletarian cultural revolution.
Comrade Chiang Ching, first deputy leader of the Cultural Revolution Group under the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party, spoke amid thunderous applause. She said: You have followed Chairman Mao’s teaching and come on foot, displaying an industrious and simple style of work. Learning from workers and poor and lower-middle peasants, you have inherited and carried forward the fine revolutionary tradition and set an example for us. The revolutionary road is not smooth but tortuous; all you students must persevere and advance with courage and redoubled revolutionary spirit.
A representative of the Mao Tse-tung’s Thought Red Guard Long March Detachment from the Wusih Institute of Light Industry told the rally what they had experienced and gained from their 39 days’ march to Peking. With great feeling, he concluded: “The long march is a great school and a great cauldron. In this great school of Mao Tse-tung’s thought, we have received a lively class education in those 39 days. We have become wiser and our minds nobler after our extensive contacts with society and after learning from the workers and peasants. We have arrived at a better understanding of Chairman Mao’s teaching that ‘the people, and the people alone, are the motive force in the making of world history.’ The great storm of mass struggles has taught us that we must have faith in the masses and in the Party. Our red hearts are always turned towards our most respected and beloved great leader Chairman Mao! We will always follow Chairman Mao and advance in the teeth of great storms; we vow to carry the Chinese revolution and the world revolution through to the end.”
When Chou En-lai, Member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party and Premier of the State Council, addressed the rally, the stands burst into enthusiastic applause. On behalf of the great leader Chairman Mao and his close comrade-in-arms Comrade Lin Piao, and the Party’s Central Committee and the State Council, Comrade Chou En-lai extended his greetings to the young Red Guards and revolutionary teachers and students. He said: You have come to our capital, Peking, from all over the country after crossing mountains and rivers. We welcome you!
Chou En-lai also stated: We are very happy that you are emulating the spirit of the Liberation Army. You have travelled long distances on foot, from one or two thousand li to more than 5,000 li. By your spirit, you have set an example for us and the students of the whole country to learn from. You have correctly said that this is only the first step in a 10,000-li long march. You should continue to learn from the Liberation Army, be a propaganda team, a work team and a study team, and always keep up the revolutionary spirit of travelling on foot for exchanging revolutionary experience.
After his speech, Comrade Chou En-lai led all present in cheering: “Long live the long march spirit!” “Long live the great proletarian cultural revolution!” “Long live the dictatorship of the proletariat!” “Long live the Chinese Communist Party!” and “Long live our great leader Chairman Mao! Long, long life to him!” This resulted in a standing ovation which reverberated across the whole stadium expressing the joy and high spirits of all present.
The rally agreed to send a letter to Chairman Mao before it ended. In it, the young revolutionary fighters expressed their determination to study Chairman Mao’s writings, follow his teachings and act according to his instructions, resolutely adhere to the proletarian revolutionary line represented by Chairman Mao, thoroughly criticize and repudiate the bourgeois reactionary line, carry the great proletarian cultural revolution through to the end, make uninterrupted revolution, make revolution all their lives and become reliable successors to the proletarian revolutionary cause.