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Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung


March 6, 1940

[This inner-Party directive was written by Comrade Mao Tse-tung on behalf of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.]

1. This is a time when the anti-Communist die-hards of the Kuomintang are doing all they can to prevent us from setting up organs of anti-Japanese democratic political power in northern and central China and other places, while we on our part must set them up, and in the major anti-Japanese base areas it is already possible for us to do so. Our struggle with the anti-Communist die-hards over this issue in northern, central and northwestern China can help to promote the establishment of united front organs of political power over the whole country and it is being followed attentively by the whole nation. Therefore, this issue must be handled carefully.

2. The political power we are establishing during the anti-Japanese war is of a united front character. It is the political power of all those who support both resistance and democracy; it is the joint democratic dictatorship of several revolutionary classes over the traitors and reactionaries. It differs from the counter-revolutionary dictatorship of the landlord class and the bourgeoisie as well as from the worker-peasant democratic dictatorship of the Agrarian Revolution period. A clear understanding of the character of this political power and conscientious efforts to put it into practice will greatly help to spread democracy through the country. Any deviation, either to the "Left" or the Right, will create a very bad impression on the whole nation.

3. The convening of the Hopei Provincial Assembly and the elections to the Hopei Administrative Council, preparations for which have just been started, will be of exceptional importance. Equally important will be the establishment of the new organs of political power in northwestern Shansi, in Shantung, in areas north of the Huai River, in the counties of Suiteh and Fuhsien, and in eastern Kansu. We must proceed according to the united front principle and do our utmost to avoid any Right or "Left" tendencies. At the moment the "Left" tendency of neglecting to win over the middle bourgeoisie and the enlightened gentry is the more serious danger.

4. In accordance with the united front principle concerning the organs of political power, the allocation of places should be one-third for Communists, one-third for non-Party left progressives, and one-third for the intermediate sections who are neither left nor right.

5. We must make sure that the Communists play the leading role in the organs of political power, and therefore the Party members who occupy one-third of the places must be of high calibre. This will be enough to ensure the Party's leadership without a larger representation. Leadership is neither a slogan to be shouted from morning till night nor an arrogant demand for obedience; it consists rather in using the Party's correct policies and the example we set by our own work to convince and educate people outside the Party so that they willingly accept our proposals.

6. The non-Party progressives must be allocated one-third of the places because they are linked with the broad masses of the petty bourgeoisie. This will be of tremendous importance in winning the latter over.

7. Our aim in allocating one-third of the places to the intermediate sections is to win over the middle bourgeoisie and the enlightened gentry. Winning over these sections is an important step in isolating the die-hards. At the present time, we must not fail to take the strength of these sections into account and must be circumspect in our relations with them.

8. Our attitude to the non-Communists must be one of cooperation, whether or not they have party affiliations and whatever these may be, so long as they favour resistance to Japan and are willing to co-operate with the Communist Party.

9. The allocation of places described above represents the genuine policy of the Party, and we must on no account be half-hearted about it. To execute this policy, we must educate the Party members who work in the organs of political power, overcome the narrowness manifested in their reluctance and uneasiness in co-operating with non-Communists, and encourage a democratic style of work, that is, consultation with the non-Party people and winning majority approval before taking action. At the same time, we must do all we can to encourage the non-Party people to express their views on various problems and must lend an attentive ear to their suggestions. We must never think that because we hold military and political power we can force unconditional compliance with our decisions, and on that account shun the effort to win the non-Party people over to our views so that they carry them out gladly and whole-heartedly.

10. The above figures for the allocation of places are not rigid quotas to be filled mechanically; they are in the nature of a rough proportion which every locality must apply according to its specific circumstances. At the lowest level, the ratio may be somewhat modified to prevent the landlords and evil gentry from sneaking into the organs of political power. Where such organs have been in existence for some time, as in the Shansi-Chahar-Hopei border area, the central Hopei area, the Taihang mountain area and the southern Hopei area, there should be a re-examination of policy in the light of this principle. And this principle should be observed whenever a new organ of political power is set up.

11. The united front policy on suffrage should be that every Chinese who reaches the age of eighteen and is in favour of resistance and democracy should enjoy the right to elect and to be elected, irrespective of class, nationality, sex, creed, party affiliation or educational level. The organs of political power of the anti-Japanese united front must be elected by the people. Their form of organization should be based on democratic centralism.

12. The fundamental point of departure for all major policy measures in the united front organs of political power should be opposition to Japanese imperialism, protection of the people who are resisting Japan, proper adjustment of the interests of all the anti-Japanese social strata, improvement of the livelihood of the workers and peasants and suppression of traitors and reactionaries.

13. The non-Party people who work in our organs of political power should not be required to live, talk and act like Communists, or otherwise they may feel dissatisfied or ill at ease.

14. All regional and sub-regional bureaus of the Central Committee, all area Party committees and all heads of army units are hereby instructed to give a clear explanation of this directive to Party members, and ensure that it is fully carried out in the work of our organs of political power.

Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung