Peking Review – 1958
The first edition of Peking Review appeared on 4th March 1958.
1958 was the year of the start of the ‘Great leap Forward’ – a revolutionary attempt to move China, which had been kept in a near feudalistic stage by foreign capital from the middle of the 19th century until Liberation in 1949, into the modern, industrial age.
If truth is the first victim of war it’s the last thing to appear when criticism is made of countries which attempt to build a new society which is not based upon exploitation and oppression of a minority over a majority. For that reason condemnations and criticisms made by capitalism and its cronies always have to be taken with a large pinch of salt. If all that happened after 1949 was such a disaster why is it now that capitalist (and increasingly imperialistic) China is able to threaten the capitalist countries that have been running the world for centuries?
The capitalist China of today is based on the wealth created by the struggles of the Chinese workers and peasants who, through their own efforts and (for most of the period of when Chairman Mao was at the helm of the country) having to face the hostility and isolation imposed upon it from the very beginning by the imperialists (mainly US imperialism) and later by the aggressive attitude of the erstwhile friend of workers struggles, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), when it started to follow the revisionist and capitalist road from the mid-1950s.
Even ‘statistics’ produced under the auspices of the powerful elite in charge of the Communist party of China in recent years have to be treated skeptically. Deng Xiaoping and his successors have even more to gain from denigrating the achievements before 1976 – otherwise their credibility comes to nought.
The articles published in the following issues of Peking Review will provide the reader with an opportunity to compare both sides of the argument. The reader will have to decide who to believe and consider context at the time as well as what they are being told today.
Topics and issues addressed in 1958:
- China’s Economic Plan for 1958
- ‘Two Chinas’ Hoax
- great debate on the literary front
- 12 year plan for agriculture
- intellectuals go to the countryside
- leaders must behave like ordinary workers
- birthday greetings to Paul Robeson
- workers and Trade Unions in China
- regional autonomy for national minorities
- Modern Revisionism must be repudiated
- US intervention in Indonesia
- ‘let’s all learn a little philosophy’
- China’s monetary system
- 2nd Session of the 8th National Congress of the Communist Party of China
- introducing a Co-operative
- Yugoslav Revisionism – product of Imperialist Policy
- Korea in perspective
- Ministers with Pick and Shovel
- First Chinese Atomic Reactor
- Romanticism and Realism
- Stop US-British aggression in the Middle East
- ‘On the Long March with Chairman Mao’
- Mao Tse-tung and NS Khrushchov meet
- higher education in China
- Premier Chou En-Lai’s statement on the situation in the Taiwan Straights Area
- China’s Foreign Trade in 1958
- water conservancy
- Mao Tse-tung on ‘Imperialism and All Reactionaries are Paper Tigers’
- Raise the Red Banner of the October Revolution still higher
- Communist working spirit
- family life – the new way
- Anniversary of the Moscow Meetings of Communist and Workers’ parties
- women builders of Socialism
- expanding China’s railway network
- Communique and Resolution of the 6th Plenary Session of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China
- Great Soviet Plan to Build Communism
Available issues of Peking Review:
(There’s a Subject Index – for the whole year – at the end of Issue No. 44.)
From issue No. 1 of 1979 the weekly political and informative magazine Peking Review changed its name to Beijing Review. On page 3 of that number the editors made the open declaration of the change in the direction of the erstwhile ‘People’s Republic of China’.
By stating that the Communist Party of China (under the control then of Teng Hsiao-Ping/Deng Xiaoping ) sought
‘to accomplish socialist modernisation by the end of the century and turn China …. into an economically developed and fully democratic socialist country’
the CPC was openly declaring the rejection of the revolutionary path, which the country had been following since 1949, and the adoption of the road that would inevitably lead to the full scale establishment of capitalism.
For those who would like to follow this downward spiral into the murky depths of capitalism and imperialism in the issues of Beijing Review (complete for the years 1979-1990 – intermittently thereafter) you can do so by going to bannedthought – which also serves as an invaluable resource for more material about China during its revolutionary phase.