Views & Reviews
Surviving as a Nation in a Dangerous Political and Ideological World (Part 2)
In the first article, we have had a sweeping bird’s eye view of political events that happened in the mid 20th century. We however must remember that all political events are inspired and motivated by political thoughts and political ideologies. For example Japan’s ambition for word domination was driven by a belief that they were a race destined to rule under the shadow of an omnipotent Emperor God.
The “Tanaka Plan” which is a disputed document with Japan stating that it was never drafted by them while China and some western countries alleged that it was drafted by Baron Tanaka Giichi, is there. To quote just one excerpt from the long document, it went like this:
“Having China’s entire resources at our disposal, we shall proceed to conquer India, the Archipelago, Asia Minor, Central Asia, and even Europe. But to get control of Manchuria and Mongolia is the first step if the Yamato race wishes to distinguish themselves on Continental Asia.”
However by the end of 1945, Japan’s ambition for world conquest ended in her own destruction. Also, in the attack of China Japan created just the opposite of what it had intended to do which was to kill China’s spirit of nationhood from within. But instead of destroying China national spirit and using her mineral resources for world conquest, Japan instead created a very powerful and united China which had never existed in Chinese history prior to this. In the end, what 4000 years of Chinese history had failed to accomplish was accomplished by Japan for China within two years of brutal occupation (1937-1 938).
However, the greatest tragedy for China was that after her victory in the 2nd world war where she came out with a lot of trained personnel as well as military equipment to build a great and strong China, Mao Zedong with his Communist ideology (CCP) and thirst for power threw the whole country into another bloody civil war against the legally established Nationalist Kuomintang Government (KMT) under General Chiang Kai-Shek. In order to combat the nationalist government, Mao first mobilised the mostly poverty stricken Chinese rural peasants into a formidable fighting force with promises of an equilateral society. Mao instigated these peasants to revolt against their landlords. There was an unrestrained mass killing of these landlords as they were rounded up and shot to death.
Mao next sent them into mainland China. As the peasant forces stormed into the mainland Chiang Kai-shek’s forces, outnumbered and overwhelmed fell in October 1949 and fled to the Island of Taiwan where they established a democratic government called The Republic of China in 1949.
As for Mao and his close colleagues, they consolidated their political power after brainwashing their rural armies with the communist ideology of: “From each according to his ability; to each according to his needs.” These newly formed storm troopers unleashed a reign of terror against anybody who opposed their political ideology.
Next, Mao launched his fantastic idea of “The great leap forward” from 1958-1960. This was a grandiose programme of mass producing vast industrial and agricultural products in one great leap of revolutionary fervour. Mao’s government did not have the raw material or expertise to achieve such an ambitious plan. But in spite of all these facts, Mao first abolished private ownership of any lands by any peasant. All these lands became state property. (This meant, 14 to 20 % of the entire world’s surface now officially belonged to Mao and his cohorts!). The people were next forced into communes and collective farms for producing rice, grains and pulses- all for the state. Their former villages were either destroyed or dismantled to build huge new communal buildings where they had to eat together and sleep together. This was truly the uprooting of an ancient civilisation into an artificial communist and socialist society. In order to fulfil the state’s high output of agricultural products, farmers were even forced to work far into the nights under the constant watchful eyes of communist guards. Prior to this, since China was such a vast land, Land lordship as well as ownership of private lands was a reality. From these lands all of China’s millions used to eke out a living sufficient for their survival and joyful festivals. But now all these things were only bygone memories.
As for the technological leap, all metal scrapes in the abandoned villages and countryside- including iron and other metal pots were collected and melted into blocks of iron. These melted mixed iron blocks were however useless for any kind of industrial use.
The huge agricultural products produced from these forced labour of the peasants were, after giving a meagre sum to them, all taken by the government and stored in huge urban storages. This huge surplus grains were then exported to foreign countries like Russia to repay national debts incurred during the Second World War as well as the ensuing years of communist takeover in China. Russian debt for China at that time stood at 1.973 billion. As a result of all these huge exports of grains for repayment of debts and purchase of arms, at home, an inevitable man made famine overtook the country from which at least 30 million Chinese peasants would die from starvation (Some Chinese historians even puts the death toll at 55 million). Many hungry citizens resorted to cannibalism when their bodies shrunk to just skeletons hanging on seemingly bare bones. Many other hungry citizens committed suicide in their thousands. It is said that when these statistics were shown to Mao Zedong, he simply said “I am ready to sacrifice half the population if the remaining half can bring about the success of the revolution.”
Despite all these horrifying deaths, through a tight censorship of the press and an equally successful state propaganda machinery, the urban Chinese population was kept fooled into thinking that Mao was their great revolutionary leader who would put China into the central theatre of world affairs. Mao therefore, after publishing his famous little “Red Book” which contained his thoughts, launched the Cultural Revolution. This Cultural Revolution was an attempt to wipe out all western cultural influences imbibed by the Chinese over the centuries of western domination of China. As a result of this revolution, many young college and university students turned against their own parent’s western influenced lifestyles. Very soon, there were violent rebellions in many urban families where children turned against their own parents. From these rebellious student bodies, the brutal Red Guards were formed. These groups became the second storm troopers of Mao Zedong’s communist party. Time cannot allow me to write about their brutal activities but they were the equivalents of Hitler’s SS storm troopers and Mussolini’s Black Coats. Between 1966- 1976, their revolution killed over 20 million Chinese citizens. Add this number to the 30 million killed in “The great leap forward” of 1958-1960 and it is over 50 million people. All these millions of Chinese citizens died from this tragic Chinese revolution which was all fuelled by a foreign political ideology. (This final total does not include the Chinese 2nd world war death toll).To conclude, this is what a single man with a few dedicated followers committed to a political ideology can do to a whole country. Nagas must be aware of these facts because within our national struggle, there are many leaders who are committed to Mao Zedong’s socialist political ideology.
Kaka D Iralu
Click the link below to read Part 1