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Putting people first ensures CPC's vibrancy

Source: China Daily Global Updated: 2021-08-05


[Li Min/China Daily]

Party's 'fundamental political stance' is hallmark of success

Antaeus, the son of the gods Poseidon and Gaea, is one of the Gigantes in Greek mythology. He draws strength from his mother, earth. The demigod hero Heracles locks Antaeus in a bear hug to keep him away from the ground and crush him.

"Our Party must keep close ties with the broad masses. If the ties are not good, danger will be imminent like Antaeus being strangled to death," Liu Shaoqi, a member of the first-generation central leadership of the Communist Party of China, said in 1942.

Xin Xiangyang, vice-president of the Academy of Marxism of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said that the people are the secret weapon that has kept the CPC vibrant for a century.

Party of the people

"The Party has always highlighted the people as the source of its primal strength," Xin said.

At the Second National Congress of the CPC, held in 1922, the Party adopted a new revolutionary strategy of mobilizing and relying on the masses-an approach that was never followed or could possibly be followed by any other political party or group.

For example, during the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression (1931-45), the national united front led by the CPC played a very active role. Through the front, the CPC maintained extensive connections with people in Japanese-occupied areas, as well as in areas ruled by the Kuomintang and with Chinese people overseas.

After the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, the CPC shifted the focus of its work from rural areas to cities. Relying on the working class and people from all walks of life, the CPC, which had long developed in rural areas but had inadequate experience in the administration of urban areas, brought factories and mines back into production. A solid foundation was being laid for rebuilding China's economy.

Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, said the house of the People's Republic of China has been built of bricks and tiles, with the people being its cornerstone. The masses are the real heroes.

At a ceremony marking the 95th anniversary of the founding of the CPC, Xi said that "to stay true to why we started out and continue going forward, we must firmly believe that the people are the foundation of the CPC and the source of its strength".

He said that the Party must remain committed to serving the people and relying on them in all endeavors, giving full scope to the enthusiasm, initiative and creativity of the people.

"Standing on the people's side represents the fundamental political stance of the CPC, and it is what distinguishes a Marxist political party from other political parties," Xi said. "The CPC stands together with the people in good and bad times, maintaining its close bond with them no matter what fate may bring. This is a fundamental guarantee that enables the CPC to overcome all difficulties and dangers."

"He who wins over the people wins the country; he who loses the people loses the country," Xi said.

With the Opium War of 1840, China was plunged into the darkness of domestic turmoil and foreign aggression, and its people, ravaged by war, saw their homeland torn apart, and they lived in poverty and despair. With tenacity and heroism, countless dedicated patriots fought against the odds, and tried every possible means to seek the nation's salvation. But despite their efforts, they were powerless to change the nature of society in old China and the plight of the Chinese people.

Nearly 100 political organizations were active in China's political arena around the May 4 Movement-a political, anti-imperialist movement that stemmed from student demonstrations in Beijing on May 4, 1919-the most politically dynamic period in Chinese history, with the CPC being just a small one. The Kuomintang, a party led by Sun Yat-sen, was the most influential political group. However, the Kuomintang was poorly organized, dispirited and divided by many internal conflicts.

Of all of these political groups, the CPC was the one that was able to understand the historic task facing the Chinese nation, and could mobilize and organize the people to accomplish it.

At its Second National Congress, the CPC formulated the first complete democratic revolutionary program against imperialism and feudalism in Chinese revolutionary history. After analyzing the economic and political situation of China at that time, the congress identified the nature of Chinese society as semi-colonial and semi-feudal. Based on this assessment, the CPC advanced its then program to overthrow the warlords, shake off the oppression by foreign imperialism, achieve complete national independence and make China a united and truly democratic republic. The program not only coincided with the nation's earnest wish but also lit up the road for China's social development.

Rapid development

Over the past 100 years, the CPC has navigated China, the world's most populous country, toward a path of rapid development, and has created the Chinese miracle that has amazed the world, according to Xie Chuntao, vice-president of the Party School of the Central Committee of the CPC.

Over the past eight years, China has lifted some 100 million people out of poverty, beating the 2030 target set by the United Nations for eliminating extreme poverty.

China is home to nearly one-fifth of the world's population. Its complete eradication of extreme poverty-the first target of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development-10 years ahead of schedule, is a milestone in the history of the Chinese nation and the history of humankind, making an important contribution to the cause of global poverty alleviation.

China's success story of poverty alleviation fully vindicates the CPC's effort to put people first and realize common prosperity in the country.

"Every political party has its own pursuits, and pursuits vary from political party to political party," Xie said. "Some political parties fight for power and money, while the CPC works for the interest of the overwhelming majority of the people."

In a speech at the 19th National Congress of the CPC in Beijing on Oct 18, 2017, Xi Jinping said: "The original aspiration and the mission of Chinese Communists is to seek happiness for the Chinese people and rejuvenation for the Chinese nation. This original aspiration, this mission, is what inspires Chinese Communists to advance."

Solution seen

In the aftermath of the October Revolution led by the Bolshevik Party under the leadership of Vladimir Lenin in Russia in 1917, Marxism-Leninism was introduced to China. In the scientific truth of Marxism-Leninism, Chinese progressives saw a solution to China's problems, namely intense upheavals, feudal rule and foreign aggression.

When the CPC was founded in 1921, it integrated Marxism-Leninism with the Chinese workers' movement. From that moment on, the Chinese people have had in the Party a backbone for their pursuit of national independence and liberation, of a stronger and more prosperous country and of their own happiness.

In a conversation with CPC Central Committee Chairman Mao Zedong during a 1945 visit to northwestern China's Yan'an-the headquarters of the CPC and the center of the revolution from 1935 to 1948-Huang Yanpei, a prominent non-Party figure, expressed the hope that the government to be established by the CPC would bring an end to the cycle of the rise and fall of governments in Chinese history. Mao replied that the CPC had found a new path to break this cycle and that the new path was democracy. Only under public scrutiny will a government be clean and efficient; only when everyone takes responsibility will good governance prevail.

In the early years of the People's Republic of China, the CPC set great store by the experiences of the Soviet Union. At that time, among all the countries associated with China, the Soviet Union was the most advanced industrialized one. China did learn a lot from it. However, history had shown another side of the picture. Some experiences of the Soviet Union had not been successful, and even some that had been successful in the Soviet Union might not be suitable for the Chinese situation. Serious errors were revealed at the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in February 1956. Later, Mao Zedong called on the CPC to conduct independent thinking, respect China's actual situation, not blindly copy the Soviet model and seek a road of socialist construction that suited China's reality.

"Socialism with Chinese characteristics is socialism and nothing else. The basic principles of scientific socialism must not be abandoned; otherwise it is not socialism. What doctrine a country may choose is based on whether it can resolve the historical problems that confront that country. Both history and reality have shown us that only socialism can save China and only socialism with Chinese characteristics can bring development to China. This conclusion is the result of historical exploration and the choice of the people," Xi said in January 2013.

"We must adhere to Marxism and socialism from a developmental perspective. With each step forward we will encounter new situations and unfamiliar problems, we will face greater risks and challenges, and we will be confronted by the unexpected. We must be prepared for adversity and danger, even in times of prosperity and peace."

Meeting with Party officials of Lankao county, in central China's Henan province, on May 9, 2014, Xi said CPC leadership is the most distinctive feature of socialism with Chinese characteristics. He added that the Chinese system under the CPC's leadership is self-made rather than a clone of some countries or an imitation of others.

This showcases the CPC's confidence as well as the inherent drive that will take it toward further development, said Xin Xiangyang of the Academy of Marxism of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

Significant inspiration

Socialism with Chinese characteristics has won applause from party leaders and senior officials of different countries. They said China's success, a result of the CPC's strong leadership and its correct development path, offers significant inspiration for other countries in pursuit of their own development.

"The whole world might not imagine that a huge country like China would develop into the world's second-largest economy in just over 40 years. This is a very remarkable achievement," said Somsavat Lengsavad, former Lao deputy prime minister and a former member of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party.

The wise and strong leadership of the CPC is the decisive factor for the Chinese miracle, he said.

"In my opinion, the Chinese miracle is mainly due to the leadership of the CPC, because they found a model of development in this dynamic world," which is socialism with Chinese characteristics, said Alexandar Paunov, first secretary of the Bulgarian Communist Party.

Alberto Moreno, president of the Communist Party of Peru-Red Fatherland, said, "The path of socialism with Chinese characteristics that the Communist Party of China follows is original and responds to the demands of today's world, as well as to the conditions of China."

Addressing at a conference on the aspiration and mission education campaign on May 31, 2019, Xi Jinping said the people are the CPC's greatest strength in governance.

Xi called on every Party member to bear this in mind: The Party works for the people's interests and has no interests of its own. All it does is to realize, safeguard and develop the fundamental interests of the people.

Adham Sayed, a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Lebanon, highlighting the CPC's dedication to the well-being of the Chinese people during the pandemic's darkest hours and beyond, said, "The secret behind China's ability to control the pandemic lies in putting people's health first."

"If a party wants to survive, it must put the interests of the people first, which is what the CPC has done throughout its march," Sayed said.

Adan Chavez, vice-president of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela, said the huge progress made by the Chinese people is clear proof that socialism is an effective solution "to the problems affecting humanity".

Unlike Antaeus, the CPC is getting stronger. It had more than 95 million members as of June 5, according to the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee.