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Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung


February 1, 1940

[Comrade Mao Tse-tung delivered this speech at a mass rally in Yenan to denounce Wang Ching-wei.]

Why are we, the people of all circles in Yenan, meeting here today? We are here to denounce the traitor Wang Ching-wei, we are here to unite all anti-Japanese forces and to combat the anti-Communist die-hards.

Time and again we Communists have pointed out that Japanese imperialism is set in its policy of subjugating China. Whatever cabinet changes there may be in Japan, she will not change her basic policy of subjugating China and reducing it to a colony. Frightened out of his wits by this fact, Wang Ching-wei, the political representative of the pro-Japanese faction of the Chinese big bourgeoisie, grovels before Japan and concludes a traitorous pact, betraying China to Japanese imperialism. Moreover, he wants to set up a puppet government and army in opposition to the anti-Japanese government and army. Of late he has hardly mentioned opposition to Chiang Kai-shek and is said to have shifted over to "alliance with Chiang". Anti-communism is the main objective both of Japan and of Wang Ching-wei. Knowing that the Communist Party is the most resolute in fighting Japan and that Kuomintang-Communist co-operation means greater strength for resistance, they are trying their hardest to break up this co-operation and to separate the two parties, or better still, to set them to fighting each other. Hence they have used the die-hards within the Kuomintang to create trouble everywhere. In Hunan, there was the Pingkiang massacre;[1] in Honan, the Chuchshan massacre;[2] in Shansi, the old army attacked the new army;[3] in Hopei, Chang Yin-wu attacked the Eighth Route Army;[4] in Shantung, Chin Chi-jung attacked the guerrillas;[5] in eastern Hupeh, Cheng Ju-huai killed between five and six hundred Communists; [6] and as for the Shensi-Kansu-Ningsia Border Region, the die-hards are trying to set up a spy network from within and enforce a "blockade" from without, and are preparing an armed attack.[7] In addition, they have arrested a large number of progressive young people and put them in concentration camps;[8] they have hired that metaphysics-monger Chang Chun-mai to make reactionary proposals for the liquidation of the Communist Party, the abolition of the Shensi-Kansu-Ningsia Border Region and the disbandment of the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies; and they have hired the Trotskyite Yeh Ching and others to write articles abusing the Communist Party. All this has one purpose only--to disrupt resistance to Japan and turn the Chinese people into colonial slaves.[9]

Thus, the Wang Ching-wei clique and the anti-Communist die-hards in the Kuomintang have been working in collusion, one from without and the other from within, and have created pandemonium.

This state of affairs has infuriated large numbers of people who think that the resistance to Japan is now finished and done for and that the members of the Kuomintang are all scoundrels who ought to be opposed. We must say that their fury is entirely justified, for how can anybody help becoming infuriated in the face of such a grave situation? But resistance to Japan is not finished and done for, nor are all Kuomintang members scoundrels. Different policies should be adopted towards the different sections of the Kuomintang. Those conscienceless scoundrels who had the audacity to stab the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies in the back, to perpetrate the massacres at Pingkiang and Chuchshan, to disrupt the Border Region and to attack progressive armies and organizations and progressive individuals--these scoundrels must not be tolerated but must be dealt counterblows; any concession to them is out of the question. For they are so utterly devoid of conscience that they are even creating "friction" and perpetrating massacres and splits after our national enemy has penetrated deep into our territory. Whatever they may think, they are actually helping Japan and Wang Ching-wei, and some of them have been undercover traitors from the very outset. Failure to punish them would be a mistake; it would be an encouragement to the collaborators and traitors, it would be disloyalty to the national resistance and to our motherland, and an invitation to the scoundrels to disrupt the united front. It would be a violation of the policy of our party. However, the sole purpose of the policy of dealing blows to the capitulators and the anti-Communist die-hards is to keep up the resistance to Japan and safeguard the anti-Japanese united front. Therefore, we should show goodwill towards those Kuomintang members who are not capitulators or anti-Communist die-hards but are loyal to the War of Resistance; we should unite with them, respect them and be willing to continue our long-term co-operation with them so as to put our country in order. Whoever does otherwise is also violating the policy of the Party.

The policy of our Party is twofold: on the one hand to unite all the progressive forces and all people loyal to the cause of resisting Japan, and on the other to oppose all the heartless scoundrels, the capitulators and the anti-Communist die-hards. Both these aspects of our policy have a single objective--to bring about a turn for the better and defeat Japan. The task of the Communist Party and the people all over the country is to unite all the forces of resistance and progress, to combat all the forces of capitulation and retrogression, and to work hard to stop the present deterioration and change the situation for the better. This is our basic policy. We are optimistic, we shall never become pessimistic or despairing. We are not afraid of any attacks by the capitulators or the anti-Communist die-hards. We must smash them, and we certainly shall. China will surely achieve national liberation; China will never perish. China will surely achieve progress, the present retrogression is only a temporary phenomenon.

In our meeting today we also want to make it clear to the people throughout the country that the unity and progress of the whole nation are essential to the War of Resistance. Some people emphasize resistance alone and are reluctant to emphasize unity and progress, or even fail to mention them. This is wrong. How can the War of Resistance be maintained without genuine and firm unity, without rapid and solid progress? The anti-Communist die-hards within the Kuomintang emphasize unification, but their so-called unification is not genuine but a sham, not a rational but an irrational unification, not a unification in substance but in form. They howl for unification, but what they really want is to liquidate the Communist Party, the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies and the Shensi-Kansu-Ningsia Border Region, on the pretext that China cannot be unified so long as these exist. They want to turn everything over to the Kuomintang and not merely to continue but to extend their one-party dictatorship. If this were to occur, what unification could there be? Truth to tell, if the Communist Party, the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies and the Shensi-Kansu-Ningsia Border Region had not stepped forth and sincerely advocated ending the civil war and uniting for resistance to Japan, there would have been nobody to initiate the Anti-Japanese National United Front or to take the lead in the peaceful settlement of the Sian Incident, and there would have been no possibility at all of resisting Japan. And if today the Communist Party, the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies, the Shensi-Kansu-Ningsia Border Region and the anti-Japanese democratic base areas did not step forth and sincerely sustain the resistance to Japan and combat the dangerous tendencies towards capitulation, a split and retrogression, the situation would indeed be in a terrible mess. The several hundred thousand troops of the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies are holding two-fifths of the enemy forces in check by engaging seventeen out of the forty Japanese divisions.[10] Why should these armies be disbanded? The Shensi-Kansu-Ningsia Border Region is the most progressive region in the country, it is a democratic anti-Japanese base area. Here there are, first, no corrupt officials; second, no local tyrants and evil gentry; third, no gambling; fourth, no prostitutes; fifth, no concubines; sixth, no beggars; seventh, no narrow self-seeking cliques; eighth, no atmosphere of dejection and laxity; ninth, no professional friction-mongers; and tenth, no war profiteers. Why then should the Border Region be abolished? Only people without any sense of shame dare suggest anything so shameful. What right have these die-hards to breathe a word against us? No, Comrades! What needs to be done is not to abolish the Border Region but to get the whole country to follow its example, not to disband the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies but to get the whole country to follow their example, not to liquidate the Communist Party but to get the whole country to follow its example, not to pull progressive people back to the level of backward people but to get the latter to catch up with the former. We Communists are the staunchest advocates of unification; it is we who have initiated and maintained the united front and who have put forward the slogan for a unified democratic republic. Who else could have proposed these things? Who else could have put them into effect? Who else could be content with a monthly allowance of only five yuan?[11] Who else could have formed such a clean and incorruptible government? There is unification and unification. The capitulators have their idea of unification, they want to unify us into capitulating; the anti-Communist die-hards have their idea of unification, they want to unify us into splitting and retrogression. Could we ever accept these ideas of theirs? Can any unification that is not based on resistance, unity and progress be considered genuine? Or rational? Or real unification? What a pipe dream! It is to put forward our own idea of unification that we are meeting here today. Our idea of unification is identical with that of all the people of China, of every man and woman with a conscience. It is based on resistance, unity and progress. Only through progress can we achieve unity; only through unity can we resist Japan; and only through progress, unity and resistance can the country be unified. This is our idea of unification, a genuine, rational, real unification. The idea of a sham, irrational and formal unification is one which would lead to national subjugation and which is held by persons utterly devoid of conscience. These people want to destroy the Communist Party, the Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies and the anti-Japanese democratic base areas, and wipe out all the local anti-Japanese forces, in order to establish unification under the Kuomintang. This is a plot, an attempt to perpetuate autocratic rule under the guise of unification, to sell the dog-meat of their one-party dictatorship under the label of the sheep's head of unification; it is a plot of brazen-faced braggarts who are lost to all sense of shame. We are meeting here today precisely to punch holes in this paper tiger of theirs. Let us relentlessly combat these anti-Communist die-hards.


1. For the Pingkiang massacre, see "The Reactionaries Must Be Punished", Note 1, p. 260 of this volume.

2. The Chuehshan massacre occurred on November 11, 1939, when more than 1,800 Kuomintang secret agents and soldiers attacked the liaison offices of the New Fourth Army in the town of Chukou, Chuchshan County, Honan. Over two hundred people were murdered, including New Fourth Army officers and soldiers who had been Wounded in the anti-Japanese war and members of their families.

3. The old army refers to the troops under Yen Hsi-shan, the Kuomintang warlord in Shansi; the new army, known as the Anti-Japanese Dare-to-Die Corps, was the people's anti-Japanese army of Shansi which grew up under the influence and leadership of the Communist Party. In December 1939 Chiang Kai-shek and Yen Hsi-shan concentrated six army corps in western Shansi to attack the corps, but met with a smashing defeat. At the same time, Yen's troops in southeastern Shansi attacked the anti-Japanese democratic county governments and mass organizations in the Yangcheng-chincheng area and murdered a great number of Communists and progressives.

4. Chang Yin-wu, commander of the peace preservation corps of the Kuomintang brigands in Hopei, sprang a surprise attack on the liaison offices of the Eighth Route Army in Shenhsien County, Hopei, in June 1939 and slaughtered more than four hundred of its cadres and soldiers.

5. In April 1939, on the instructions of Shen Hung-lieh, the Kuomintang governor of Shantung, Chin Chi-jung's bandit troops attacked the Third Guerrilla Detachment of the Shantung Column of the Eighth Route Army at Poshan, killing four hundred men, including regimental officers.

6. In September 1939, Cheng Ju-huai, a Kuomintang military commander in eastern Hupeh, attacked the liaison offices of the New Fourth Army and killed between five and six hundred Communists.

7. From the winter of 1939 to the spring of 1940 the Kuomintang troops seized the county towns of Chunhua, Hsunyi, Chengning, Ninghsien and Chenynan in the Shensi-Kansu-Ningsia Border Region.

8. Imitating the German and Italian fascists, the Kuomintang reactionaries established during the anti-Japanese war many concentration camps which extended from Lanchow and Sian in the Northwest to Kanchow and Shangjao in the Southeast. Large numbers of Communists, patriots and progressive youth were interned in them.

9. After the fall of Wuhan in October 1938, the Kuomintang intensified its anti-Communist activities. In February 1939 Chiang Kai-shek secretly issued such documents as "Measures for Dealing with the Communist Problem" and "Measures for Guarding Against Communist Activities in the Japanese-Occupied Areas", and stepped up his political repression of the Communist Party in the Kuomintang-controlled areas and his military attacks on it in central and northern China. The culmination was the first large-scale anti-Communist onslaught of December 1939--March 1940.

10. The Eighth Route and New Fourth Armies later engaged an even larger number of Japanese troops. By 1943 they were fighting 64 per cent of Japan's forces of aggression and 95 per cent of the puppet troops.

11. Five yuan was the average monthly allowance for all men serving in the anti-Japanese armed forces and in the anti-Japanese government offices under Communist leadership.

Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung