“Xi: Holding high the banner of Mao ‘forever'” – 120th Anniversary of the Birth of Mao Zedong [Xinhua]

BEIJING, Dec. 26 (Xinhua) — Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Thursday that the Communist Party of China (CPC) will hold high the banner of Mao Zedong Thought “forever” in pursuing the Chinese nation’s rejuvenation.

While commemorating the 120th anniversary of the birth of the late Chinese leader, Xi hailed Mao and other members of the older generation of revolutionaries as “great figures” in fighting national and class oppression, as well as standing at the wavefront of the positive tide in the Chinese nation and world.

At a symposium held by the CPC Central Committee in Beijing, Xi said Mao, the principal founder of the CPC, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army and the People’s Republic of China (PRC), was “a great proletarian revolutionary, strategist and theorist.”

Xi also hailed Mao as “a great patriot and national hero” and the core of the first generation of the Chinese leadership.

“Mao is a great figure who changed the face of the nation and led the Chinese people to a new destiny,” said Xi, also general secretary of the CPC Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission.

He pointed out that a correct historical view must be adopted to appraise a historical figure.

“Revolutionary leaders are not gods, but human beings,” Xi said.

“(We) cannot worship them like gods or refuse to allow people to point out and correct their errors just because they are great; neither can we totally repudiate them and erase their historical feats just because they made mistakes,” Xi said.

“(We) should not simply attribute the success in historical favorable circumstances to individuals, nor should we blame individuals for setbacks in adverse situation,” he said.

“(We) cannot use today’s conditions and level of development and understanding to judge our predecessors, nor can we expect the predecessors to have done things that only the successors can do,” he said.

Mao’s greatest contributions are that he led the Party and the people to find the correct path of New-Democratic Revolution, completed the anti-imperialism and anti-feudalism tasks, established the PRC and the basic socialism system, achieved fundamental success in socialist construction, and pooled experiences and created conditions for China’s exploration of building socialism with Chinese characteristics, according to Xi.

“The banner of Mao Zedong Thought could not be lost and losing it means a negation to the Party’s glorious history; The principle of holding high the banner of Mao Zedong Thought should not be wavered at any time and we will hold high the banner to advance forever,” the president quoted late Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping as saying.

However, Xi said it cannot be negated that Mao took detours during the exploration of the path of building socialism, admitting he made “serious mistakes” in his later years, especially during the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976).

“Comrade Mao Zedong’s mistakes in his later years have their subjective factors and personal responsibility, and complicated social and historical reasons both at home and abroad also played their part. They should be viewed and analyzed comprehensively, historically and dialectically,” Xi said.

Xi said it was not easy to find a correct path. “The path decides the nation’s destiny,” he said.

“Socialism with Chinese characteristics does not just fall from the sky,” Xi said, adding that it was achieved through the toil and sacrifice of the Party and the people…

Excerpted by Zuo Shou

Full article link: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2013-12/26/c_132998764.htm

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