Socialisme Ou Barbarie’s 1967 theses on Mao and the Chinese revolution.
1. When the armies of Mao Tse Tung and of General Chu Teh crossed the Yangtse river in April 1949, the seal of defeat was almost set on the forces of Chiang Kai Shek. His power had collapsed and before the autumn the Kuo Min Tang was to be driven from the mainland. The world started talking of a ‘victory for communism’ in China. The Kung Tsiang Tang (the KTT or the Chinese Communist Party) was however to characterise its military victory over the Kuo Min Tang as the ‘victory of the national bourgeois democratic revolution’ which had begun 38 years earlier. What the KTT proposed and what Mao Tse Tung considered his first task-was the ‘stimulation of the revolutionary process’. The bourgeois revolution, according to their beliefs, would be followed by the proletarian socialist revolution. At a later stage the ‘transition to communism’ would be on the agenda. There is a striking resemblance between the ideas of Mao and the KTT on the development of the Chinese revolution, and those of Lenin and the Bolsheviks on the development of the Russian revolution.
2. This similarity is not coincidental. In both countries the revolutions resulted from similar factors and conditions. Both countries were backward at the beginning of this century. Their relations of production and their patterns of exploitation were semi-feudal(or related to feudalism) and were predominantly based on agriculture. Their populations were largely peasant. Religious beliefs permeated both societies, reflecting the social conditions: in China Confucianism, and in Russia Greek Orthodoxy. The social reality In each country formed the basis of similarly oppressive regimes: the Tsars in Russia and the Manchu Emperors in China.
3. In both Russia and China the revolutions had to solve the same political and economic tasks. They had to destroy feudalism and to free the productive forces in agriculture from the fetters in which existing relations bound them. They also had to prepare a basis for industrial development. They had to destroy absolutism and replace it by a form of government and by a state machine that would allow solutions to the existing economic problems. The economic and political problems were those of a bourgeois revolution; that is, of a revolution that was to make capitalism the dominant mode of production.