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Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung


October 24, 1952

[Directive to the leading members of the Chinese People's Volunteers drafted for the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party and its Military Commission.]

Beginning on September 18, our Volunteers, together with the Korean People's Army, initiated tactical counter-attacks on all fronts and have won a signal victory by annihilating and wounding more than thirty thousand enemy troops in the space of a month. The Central Committee and its Military Commission send you and all commanders and fighters hearty congratulations. The operations can be summed up as follows: first, concentrating superior forces and firepower on a number of selected tactically critical points, springing surprise attacks and wiping out the enemy by whole platoons, whole companies, whole battalions or by the larger part of such units; second, inflicting heavy casualties on the enemy in repeated operations as he mounts counter-attacks; and, third, firmly holding those captured strong-points which can be held and abandoning those which cannot according to circumstances, so as to keep the initiative in our hands in preparation for future counter-attacks. If such operations are kept up, we will have the enemy by the throat and force him to come to terms and end the Korean war. The losses inflicted on the enemy since July last year when our forces started tenacious positional warfare have far exceeded those inflicted on him in the many campaigns of mobile warfare before then. On the other hand, our losses have greatly diminished. So far as casualties are concerned, the monthly average, to speak only of our Volunteers, has been reduced by over two-thirds in the fifteen months since July last year, as compared with that in the previous eight months. This is due to the kind of operation mentioned above which is carried out by relying on our positions. In the period since September 18, operations of this kind have been carried out on the whole front more extensively and in a more organized way and therefore they deserve special attention.

On the occasion of the second anniversary of the Chinese People's Volunteers' entry into the war in Korea, we hope you will sum up your experience, further enhance your sense of organization, raise your tactical level and save ammunition, unite more closely with the Korean comrades and people and strive for still greater victories in future operations.

Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung