||The Period of Winter (1968 to 1969)|
The Period of Winter
After the Ninth Congress, the "battle, criticism and reform" campaign was carried out on the basis of the role that Mao suggested. Among the various policies, a slogan of "chop away criticism" was emphasised heavily. Not only did the contents go against all the important work, policies and rules which had been carried out until the Cultural Revolution violently and arbitrarily interrupted them, but also described them all as "Revisionism and Capitalism". In the economic sphere, ways to make company profits high were regarded as "property to profit".
Considering the material lives of the masses was labelled as "Revisionist", and studying the high technology of foreign countries and managerial experience was looked on as "a Cult of the West" and "being influenced by foreign countries".
In terms of education and science, it was regarded as "stupid" and to be criticised when teachers made an effort to improve the quality of lessons, and students studied science and culture and scientists carried out research.
In terms of culture and art, almost all the activities and works of culture and art that had been made since the Republic was established was regarded as "Feudalism, Capitalist and Revisionism".
The direct effect of this criticism led to turn the people's trust against the CCP and communists, making antigovernment tendencies stronger and had a great impact on production, scientific research, education and culture. In this way, winter came to China. During this horrible period, freedom of thought was not allowed and the people were silent.
The detailed events of the campaign of "battle, criticism and reform" include some of the following. After Lin, Jiang and the other members established Revolutionary Committees in each province, city and autonomous area, they demanded that greater numbers of Revolutionary Committees should be established in local areas, in each factory, school, commune and so on. Mao tried to stop the confusion in the Cultural Revolution, but at each Revolutionary Committee the factions got more excessive and the scramble for authority and profit became more serious. Revolutionary Committees said to be the new system of the Cultural Revolution couldn't meet the objective demand.
"Purifying class" demanded that traitors, bosses, landowners, rich peasants, capitalists and counterrevolutionaries should be purged. But there was no rule to distinguish "class enemies". Because the most basic democracy and law had been broken down, human rights were not guaranteed, the judiciary was completely destroyed, a lot of groups could arbitrarily purge persons who they regarded as "class enemies", imprison and interrogate them. Moreover it became popular to torture people to confess. So incidents of illegality and misjudgements could be seen everywhere in China.
The "Arrangement and reconstruction of the Party" was carried out within the Party and party organisations, which stopped their work for about three years because of the Cultural Revolution. In this campaign, the Party's entire membership was ordered to "battle against their own minds and criticise Revisionism" and the Party's organisation was ordered to "pour out old things and take in new things". "Pouring out old things" was "expelling traitors and counterrevolutionaries against whom there was certain evidence from the Party". But unfortunately, "certain evidence" could be made up arbitrarily during the Cultural Revolution. "Taking in new things" was accepting "rebels of the Proletarian Revolution" and getting them be members of the CCP. This allowed people who were involved in conspiracy and violence to get into the CCP, which caused serious ideological problems in the CCP.
"Making the office work more simple and making staff do manual labour in the countryside" caused a huge reduction in clerical workers who were made to do manual labour in the country, in factories and mines. Not only did these campaigns waste much of the material and financial power of the nation, but also millions of officials were driven to disaster.
At one time after the Ninth Congress the political situation became relatively steady, and the economy advanced somewhat.
1969 was the year in which the speed of the reduction of production slowed down and the economy started to recover. Moreover the economic advance of 1970 speeded up slightly, showing a greater recovery than in 1969. And some important construction and technology advances were accomplished. The success of launching its first satellite on 24th April 1970 was China's historical accomplishment in the field of space science. And 1st July in this year, the Chenghun railroads (1803km in length) was constructed. There were many problems in its construction, but it was completed in only nine months due to the continuous effort of eight hundred and sixty thousand workers and about thirteen hundred specialists. The results of this construction clearly showed that many officials, as well as the masses considered the benefit of nation and the people more important and resisted the Cultural Revolution and contributed to the work of the construction of Socialism. Indeed, economic reconstruction was the people's deep wish.