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Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung


August 25, 1937

[This was an outline for propaganda and agitation written by Comrade Mao Tse-tung in August 1937 for the propaganda organs of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party. It was approved by the enlarged meeting of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee at Lochuan, northern Shensi.]

A. The Lukouchiao Incident of July 7 marked the beginning of the Japanese imperialist all-out invasion of China south of the Great Wall. The fight put up by the Chinese troops at Lukouchiao marked the beginning of China's nation-wide War of Resistance. The ceaseless Japanese attacks, the people's resolute struggle, the national bourgeoisie's tendency towards resistance, the Communist Party's vigorous advocacy and firm application of a national united front policy and the nation-wide support this policy has won--all these have compelled the Chinese authorities to begin changing their policy of nonresistance, as pursued ever since the September 18th Incident of 1931, to a policy of resistance since the Lukouchiao Incident, and have caused the Chinese revolution to develop beyond the stage reached after the December 9th Movement, [1] i.e., the stage of ending the civil war and preparing for resistance, into the stage of actual resistance. The initial changes in the Kuomintang's policy with the Sian Incident and the Third Plenary Session of its Central Executive Committee as their starting point, Mr. Chiang Kai-shek's Lushan statement of July on the question of resistance to Japan, and many of his measures of national defence, all deserve commendation. The troops at the front, whether the land and air forces or the local armed units, have all fought courageously and demonstrated the heroic spirit of the Chinese nation. In the name of the national revolution, the Chinese Communist Party ardently salutes our patriotic troops and fellow-countrymen throughout China.

B. But on the other hand, even after the Lukouchiao Incident of July 7, the Kuomintang authorities are continuing to pursue the wrong policy they have pursued ever since the September 18th Incident, making compromises and concessions, [2] suppressing the zeal of the patriotic troops and clamping down on the patriotic people's national salvation movement. There is no doubt that, having seized Peiping and Tientsin, Japanese imperialism will press ahead with its policy of large-scale offensives, take the second and third steps in its premeditated war plan and launch fierce attacks on the whole of northern China and other areas, relying on its own brute military strength while at the same time drawing support from German and Italian imperialism and exploiting the vacillations of British imperialism and the estrangement of the Kuomintang from the broad masses of the working people. The flames of war are already raging in Chahar and in Shanghai. To save our motherland, to resist the attacks of the powerful invaders, to defend northern China and the seacoast and recover Peiping, Tientsin and northeastern China, the Kuomintang authorities and the whole people must thoroughly learn the lesson of the loss of northeastern China, Peiping and Tientsin, learn and take warning from the fall of Abyssinia, learn from the Soviet Union's past victories over its foreign enemies, [3] learn from Spain's present experience in successfully defending Madrid, [4] and firmly unite to fight to the end in defence of the motherland. Henceforth the task is: "Mobilize all the nation's forces for victory in the War of Resistance", and the key to its accomplishment is a complete and thorough change in Kuomintang policy. The step forward taken by the Kuomintang on the question of resistance is to be commended; it is what the Chinese Communist Party and the people of the whole country have for years been hoping for, and we welcome it. But the Kuomintang has not changed its policies on such matters as the mobilization of the masses and the introduction of political reforms. It is still basically unwilling to lift the ban on the people's anti-Japanese movement or make fundamental changes in the government apparatus, it still has no policy for improving the people's livelihood, and is still not sufficiently sincere in its co-operation with the Communist Party. If, at this critical juncture of life or death for our nation, the Kuomintang continues in the same old groove and does not quickly change its policy, it will bring disaster to the War of Resistance. Some Kuomintang members say, "Let political reforms be instituted after victory." They think the Japanese aggressors can be defeated by the government's efforts alone, but they are wrong. A few battles may be won in a war of resistance fought by the government alone, but it will be impossible to defeat the Japanese aggressors thoroughly. This can be done only by a war of total resistance by the whole nation. Such a war, however, requires a complete and drastic change in Kuomintang policy and the joint efforts of the whole nation from top to bottom to carry out a thoroughgoing programme of resistance to Japan, that is, a national salvation programme formulated in the spirit of the revolutionary Three People's Principles and the Three Great Policies [5] drawn up personally by Dr. Sun Yat-sen during the Best period of Kuomintang Communist co-operation.

C. In all earnestness the Chinese Communist Party proposes to the Kuomintang, to the people of the whole country, to all political parties and groups, to people in all walks of life and to all the armed forces a Ten-Point National Salvation Programme for the purpose of completely defeating the Japanese aggressors. It firmly believes that only by carrying out this programme fully, sincerely and resolutely will it be possible to defend the motherland and defeat the Japanese aggressors. Otherwise, the responsibility will fall on those who procrastinate and allow the situation to deteriorate; once the country's doom is sealed, it will be too late for regrets and lamentations. The ten points are as follows:

1. Overthrow Japanese imperialism.

Sever diplomatic relations with Japan, expel Japanese officials, arrest Japanese agents, confiscate Japanese property in China, repudiate debts to Japan, abrogate treaties signed with Japan and take back all Japanese Concessions.

Fight to the finish in defence of northern China and the seacoast.

Fight to the finish for the recovery of Peiping, Tientsin and northeastern China.

Drive the Japanese imperialists out of China.

Oppose all vacillation and compromise.

2. Mobilize the military strength of the whole nation.

Mobilize all land, sea and air forces for a nation-wide war of resistance.

Oppose a passive, purely defensive strategy and adopt an active, independent strategy.

Set up a permanent council of national defence to deliberate and decide on national defence plans and strategy.

Arm the people and develop anti-Japanese guerrilla warfare in co-ordination with the operations of the main forces.

Reform the political work in the armed forces to achieve unity between officers and men.

Achieve unity between the army and the people and bring the army's militant spirit into play.

Support the Northeast Anti-Japanese United Army and disrupt the enemy's rear.

Give equal treatment to all troops fighting in the War of Resistance.

Establish military zones in all parts of the country, mobilize the whole nation to join in the war and thus effect a gradual change from the mercenary system to one of general military service.

3. Mobilize the people of the whole country.

Let all the people of the country (with the exception of the traitors) have freedom of speech, the press, assembly and association in resisting Japan and saving the nation, and the right to take up arms against the enemy.

Annul all old laws and decrees which restrict the people's patriotic movements and promulgate new, revolutionary laws and decrees.

Release all patriotic and revolutionary political prisoners and lift the ban on political parties.

Let the people of the whole country mobilize, take up arms and join the War of Resistance. Let those with strength contribute strength, those with money contribute money, those with guns contribute guns, and those with knowledge contribute knowledge.

Mobilize the Mongolian, the Hui and all other minority nationalities, in accordance with the principle of national self-determination and autonomy, in the common fight against Japan.

4. Reform the government apparatus.

Call a national assembly which is genuinely representative of the people to adopt a genuinely democratic constitution, to decide on policies for resisting Japan and saving the nation, and to elect a government of national defence.

The government of national defence must draw in the revolutionaries of all parties and mass organizations, and expel the pro-Japanese elements.

The government of national defence shall practice democratic centralism, and shall be at once democratic and centralized.

The government of national defence shall pursue revolutionary policies for resisting Japan and saving the nation.

Institute local self-government, throw out corrupt officials and establish clean government.

5. Adopt an anti-Japanese foreign policy.

Conclude anti-aggression alliances and anti-Japanese pacts for mutual military aid with all countries that are opposed to Japanese aggression, provided that this entails no loss of our territory or of our sovereign rights.

Support the international peace front and oppose the front of aggression of Germany, Japan and Italy.

Unite with the worker and peasant masses of Korea and Japan against Japanese imperialism.

6. Adopt wartime financial and economic policies.

Financial policy should be based on the principle that those with money should contribute money and that the property of the traitors should be confiscated in order to meet war expenditures. Economic policy should consist in readjusting and expanding defence production, developing the rural economy and assuring self-sufficiency in wartime commodities. Encourage the use of Chinese goods and improve local products. Completely prohibit Japanese goods. Suppress profiteering merchants and ban speculation and manipulation of the market.

7. Improve the people's livelihood.

Improve the conditions of workers, office employees and teachers, and of soldiers fighting the Japanese.

Give preferential treatment to the families of the soldiers fighting the Japanese.

Abolish exorbitant taxes and miscellaneous levies.

Reduce rent and interest.

Give relief to the unemployed.

Regulate grain supplies.

Aid the victims of natural calamities.

8. Adopt an anti-Japanese educational policy.

Change the existing educational system and curriculum and put into effect a new system and curriculum aimed at resisting Japan and saving the nation.

9. Weed out traitors and pro-Japanese elements and consolidate the rear.

10. Achieve national unity against Japan.

Build up the Anti-Japanese National United Front of all political parties and groups, people in all walks of life and all armed forces on the basis of Kuomintang-Communist co-operation in order to lead the War of Resistance, unite in good faith and meet the national crisis.

D. It is imperative to discard the policy of resistance by the government alone and to enforce the policy of total resistance by the whole nation. The government must unite with the people, fully restore the revolutionary spirit of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, put the above Ten-Point Programme into effect and strive for complete victory. Together with the masses of the people and the armed forces under its leadership, the Chinese Communist Party will firmly adhere to this programme and stand in the forefront of the War of Resistance, defending the motherland to the last drop of its blood. In keeping with its consistent policy, the Chinese Communist Party is ready to stand side by side with the Kuomintang and the other political parties and groups and unite with them in building the solid Great Wall of the national united front to defeat the infamous Japanese aggressors and strive for a new China which is independent, happy and free. To achieve this goal, we must firmly repudiate the traitors' theories of compromise and capitulation, and combat national defeatism according to which it is impossible to defeat the Japanese aggressors. The Chinese Communist Party firmly believes that the Japanese aggressors can definitely be defeated provided the above Ten-Point Programme is carried out. If our 450 million countrymen all exert themselves, the Chinese nation will certainly achieve final victory!

Down with Japanese imperialism!

Long live the national revolutionary war!

Long live New China, independent, happy and free!


1. The year 1935 witnessed a new upsurge in the popular patriotic movement throughout the country. Students in Peking, under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, held a patriotic demonstration on December 9, putting forward such slogans as "Stop the civil war and unite to resist foreign aggression" and "Down with Japanese imperialism". This movement broke through the long reign of terror imposed by the Kuomintang government in league with the Japanese invaders and very quickly won the people's support throughout the country. It is known as the "December 8th Movement". The outcome was that new changes manifested themselves in the relations among the various classes in the country, and the Anti-Japanese National United Front proposed by the Communist Party of China became the openly advocated policy of all patriotic people. The Chiang Kai-shek government with its traitorous policy became very isolated.

2. See the introductory note to "Policies, Measures and Perspectives for Resisting the Japanese Invasion", pp. 13-14 of this volume.

3. See History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Bolsheviks), Short Course, Eng. ed., FLPH, Moscow, 1951, pp. 347-81.

4. The defence of Madrid, starting in October 1936, lasted for two years and five months. In 1936, fascist Germany and Italy made use of the Spanish fascist warlord Franco to launch a war of aggression against Spain. The Spanish people, led by the Popular Front Government, heroically defended democracy against aggression. The battle of Madrid, the capital of Spain, was the bitterest in the whole war. Madrid fell in March 1939 because Britain, France and other imperialist countries assisted the aggressors by their hypocritical policy of "non-intervention" and because divisions arose within the Popular Front.

5. The Three People's Principles were the principles and the programme put forward by Sun Yat-sen on the questions of nationalism, democracy and people's livelihood in China's bourgeois-democratic revolution. In the manifesto adopted by the Kuomintang at its First National Congress in 1924 Sun Yat-sen restated the Three People's Principles. Nationalism was interpreted as opposition to imperialism and active support was expressed for the movements of the workers and peasants. Thus the old Three People's Principles were transformed into the new Three People's Principles characterized by the Three Great Policies, that is, alliance with Russia, co-operation with the Communist Party, and assistance to the peasants and workers. The new Three People's Principles provided the political basis for the co-operation between the Communist Party of China and the Kuomintang during the First Revolutionary Civil War period.

Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung