An informal chat with Caleb Maupin as your guide to the multitude of news, lies, distortions, rumors, idiocies, hypocrisies, and ideologies that shape our world.
Taking the example of Canadian surgeon Dr Bethune, who offered his services to help the Spanish Republican army and later China’s revolutionaries in their hour of need, Caleb discusses what makes a person dedicate his life to the betterment and liberation of others.
China has many monuments to Bethune’s memory. The Chinese people never forget their true friends, let alone those who will put their lives on the line to help them, as Dr Bethune did. Mao wrote a heart-rending eulogy to him, which I reproduce below.
IN MEMORY OF NORMAN BETHUNE
December 21, 1939
“We must all learn the spirit of absolute selflessness from him. With this spirit everyone can be very useful to the people. A man’s ability may be great or small, but if he has this spirit, he is already noble-minded and pure, a man of moral integrity and above vulgar interests, a man who is of value to the people.”—Mao Tse-tung
By Mao Tse-tung
Comrade Norman Bethune, a member of the Communist Party of Canada, was around fifty when he was sent by the Communist Parties of Canada and the United States to China; he made light of travelling thousands of miles to help us in our War of Resistance Against Japan. He arrived in Yenan in the spring of last year, went to work in the Wutai Mountains, and to our great sorrow died a martyr at his post. What kind of spirit is this that makes a foreigner selflessly adopt the cause of the Chinese people’s liberation as his own? It is the spirit of internationalism, the spirit of communism, from which every Chinese Communist must learn. Leninism teaches that the world revolution can only succeed if the proletariat of the capitalist countries supports the struggle for liberation of the colonial and semi-colonial peoples and if the proletariat of the colonies and semi-colonies supports that of the proletariat of the capitalist countries. Comrade Bethune put this Leninist line into practice. We Chinese Communists must also follow this line in our practice. We must unite with the proletariat of all the capitalist countries, with the proletariat of Japan, Britain, the United States, Germany, Italy and all other capitalist countries, for this is the only way to overthrow imperialism, to liberate our nation and people and to liberate the other nations and peoples of the world. This is our internationalism, the internationalism with which we oppose both narrow nationalism and narrow patriotism.
[The Chinese Revolution and the Chinese Communist Party is a textbook which was written jointly by Comrade Mao Tse-tung and several other comrades in Yenan to the winter of 1939. The first chapter, “Chinese Society”, was drafted by other comrades and revised by Comrade Mao Tse-tung. The second chapter, “The Chinese Revolution”, was written by Comrade Mao Tse-tung himself. Another chapter, scheduled to deal with “Party Building”, was left unfinished by the comrades working on it. The two published chapters, and especially Chapter II, have played a great educational role in the Chinese Communist Party and among the Chinese people. The views on New Democracy set out by Comrade Mao Tse-tung in Chapter II were considerably developed in his “On New Democracy”, written in January 1940.]
China is one of the largest countries in the world, her territory being about the size of the whole of Europe. In this vast country of ours there are large areas of fertile land which provide us with food and clothing; mountain ranges across its length and breadth with extensive forests and rich mineral deposits; many rivers and lakes which provide us with water transport and irrigation; and a long coastline which facilitates communication with nations beyond the seas. From ancient times our forefathers have laboured, lived and multiplied on this vast territory.
China borders on the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics in the northeast, the northwest and part of the west; the Mongolian People’s Republic in the north; Afghanistan, India, Bhutan and Nepal in the southwest and part of the west; Burma and Indo-China in the south; and Korea in the east, where she is also a close neighbor of Japan and the Philippines. China’s geographical setting has its advantages and disadvantages for the Chinese people’s revolution. It is an advantage to be adjacent to the Soviet Union and fairly distant from the major imperialist countries in Europe and America, and to have many colonial or semi-colonial countries around us. It is a disadvantage that Japanese imperialism, making use of its geographical proximity, is constantly threatening the very existence of all China’s nationalities and the Chinese people’s revolution.
On July 1st the Communist Party of China turns 100. Without doubt it’s formation was one of the greatest turning points in the history of mankind. It shaped the political course of China being a precedent to many a historic event, be it the Long March of 1935,the anti-Japanese War from 1937-45 , the civil war of 1946-1949, the New Democratic revolution of 1949, the Socialist Revolution from 1949-56 the Great Leap Forward, the Socialist Education Movement of 1962, and finally the Great Proletarian Cultural revolution of 1966-76 .All these events enriched the ideology of Marxism Leninism to a pinnacle with symmetry and continuity and unprecedented penetration of practice of massline and It is a great travesty that at the very time of celebration the CPC has completely betrayed the path it undertook from the 1930’s itself to morally make it an anti-thesis of Marxism-Leninism. With the very induction of the four modernisations by Deng Xiaoping the very backbone of Socialism was destroyed in China and seeds planted for capitalism to bloom.
Chairman Mao Tse-tung (now, Mao Zedong) solemnly proclaims the founding of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in Tiananmen rostrum, October 1, 1949. The just-concluded first session of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative meeting elected a Central People’s Committee in Beijing, September 30, 1949. Chairman Mao Zedong declared to the world: the Chinese people, who account for a quarter of humanity, must stand up. Since then China’s history has opened up a new era. People’s Republic of China founding ceremony was held at Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, October 1, 1949.Read More »