“The great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation”

“The great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation”

The Communist Party of China (CPC) has celebrated its 100th anniversary on July 1st. The CPC foundation in 1921 was celebrated throughout the country with ceremonies, speeches and acts.

A central act was held in Beijing’s Tian’anmen Square, where Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, Chinese president and chairman of the Central Military Commission, on Thursday addressed a ceremony.

Below, United World International provides an extended summary of the speech. The complete text is published by the Chinese news agency Xinhua.

Xi placed the CPC’s activities in the past 100 years under one ultimate theme, “bringing about the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation”, and described four different phases, where “the party united and led the Chinese People”.

Historic perspective: “The great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation”.

In spite of being a nation with a history of 5.000 years, China “After the Opium War of 1840, however, China was gradually reduced to a semi-colonial, semi-feudal society and suffered greater ravages than ever before”, stated the general secretary.

In the first phase, the party led “bloody battles with unyielding determination, achieving great success in the new-democratic revolution”, which resulted in “toppling the three mountains of imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism”.

Then followed the second phase, where “the Party united and led the Chinese people in endeavoring to build a stronger China with a spirit of self-reliance, achieving great success in socialist revolution and construction.” This phase, when China “overcame subversion, sabotage, and armed provocation by imperialist and hegemonic powers, eliminated the exploitative and repressive feudal system, provided the establishment of “socialism as our basic system“ and the “great transformation of China.

The third phase brought the “freeing the mind and forging ahead, achieving great success in reform, opening up, and socialist modernization”. General secretary Xi describes this phase with the following words:

“This enabled China to transform itself from a highly centralized planned economy to a socialist market economy brimming with vitality, and from a country that was largely isolated to one that is open to the outside world across the board. It also enabled China to achieve the historic leap from a country with relatively backward productive forces to the world’s second largest economy, and to make the historic transformation of raising the living standards of its people from bare subsistence to an overall level of moderate prosperity, and then ultimately to moderate prosperity in all respects.”

The fourth and current phase, which started with the CPC 18th National Congress, is characterized by Xi as follows:

“To realize national rejuvenation, the Party has united and led the Chinese people in pursuing a great struggle, a great project, a great cause, and a great dream through a spirit of self-confidence, self-reliance, and innovation, achieving great success for socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era.”

Regarding this phase, the secretary general makes reference to the five-sphere integrated plan, the four-pronged comprehensive strategy and the modernization of governance and a strengthening the party’s leadership.

Xi summarized the past 100 years of the CPC with the following words:

“Over the past hundred years, the Party has united and led the Chinese people in writing the most magnificent chapter in the millennia-long history of the Chinese nation, embodying the dauntless spirit that Mao Zedong expressed when he wrote, ‘Our minds grow stronger for the martyrs’ sacrifice, daring to make the sun and the moon shine in the new sky.’ The great path we have pioneered, the great cause we have undertaken, and the great achievements we have made over the past century will go down in the annals of the development of the Chinese nation and of human civilization.”

Strong emphasis on Socialism and the CPC’s role

Xi made throughout the speech strong emphasizes on socialism and the leadership of the Communist Party of China. He stated:

“Through tenacious struggle, the Party and the Chinese people showed the world that the Chinese people were capable of not only dismantling the old world, but also building a new one, that only socialism could save China, and that only socialism could develop China.”

In his speech, Xi commemorated “the concerted efforts of the Chinese Communists, the Chinese people, and the Chinese nation. Chinese Communists, with comrades Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin, and Hu Jintao as their chief representatives, have made tremendous and historic contributions to the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. To them, we express our highest respect.”

He also expressed gratitude to “The people (who) are the true heroes, for it is they who create history. On behalf of the CPC Central Committee, I would like to pay my highest respects to workers, farmers, and intellectuals across the country.”

“The journey ahead”

The general secretary Xi started his speech with the announcement of a success before elaborating on future politics. He stated:

“On this special occasion, it is my honor to declare on behalf of the Party and the people that through the continued efforts of the whole Party and the entire nation, we have realized the first centenary goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects. This means that we have brought about a historic resolution to the problem of absolute poverty in China, and we are now marching in confident strides toward the second centenary goal of building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects. This is a great and glorious accomplishment for the Chinese nation, for the Chinese people, and for the Communist Party of China!”

“We must uphold the firm leadership of the Party”

Xi places the CPC into the center of future politics in China. Stating that “without the Communist Party of China, there would be no new China”, Xi stressed the importance to uphold the Party’s overall leadership and continue to enhance its leadership, maintain political integrity and (to) uphold the core position of the General Secretary on the Party Central Committee and in the Party as a whole, and uphold the Central Committee’s authority and its centralized, unified leadership”.

“We must unite and lead the Chinese people in working ceaselessly for a better life”

Emphasizing that the “Party has no special interests of its own”, Xi called the CPC to “rely closely on the people to create history”. He stated:

“Upholding the Party’s fundamental purpose of wholeheartedly serving the people, we will stand firmly with the people, implement the Party’s mass line, respect the people’s creativity, and practice a people-centered philosophy of development. We will develop whole-process people’s democracy, safeguard social fairness and justice, and resolve the imbalances and inadequacies in development and the most pressing difficulties and problems that are of great concern to the people.”

“We must continue to adapt Marxism to the Chinese context”

Xi also emphasized the importance of Marxism and its adoption to China’s realities. He stated:

“On the journey ahead, we must continue to uphold Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, the Theory of Three Represents, and the Scientific Outlook on Development, and fully implement the Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era. We must continue to adapt the basic tenets of Marxism to China’s specific realities and its fine traditional culture. We will use Marxism to observe, understand, and steer the trends of our times, and continue to develop the Marxism of contemporary China and in the 21st century.”

“We must uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics”

In connection with Marxism’s adoption to Chinese realities, Xi emphasized the need to “to uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics”.

He elaborated:

“We must adhere to the Party’s basic theory, line, and policy, and implement the five-sphere integrated plan and the four-pronged comprehensive strategy. We must deepen reform and opening up across the board, ground our work in this new stage of development, fully and faithfully apply the new development philosophy, and foster a new pattern of development.”

In this context, he also strongly rejected foreign intervention into domestic policies, stating “We will not, however, accept sanctimonious preaching from those who feel they have the right to lecture us. we will make sure the destiny of China’s development and progress remains firmly in our own hands.”

“We must accelerate the modernization of national defense and the armed forces”

Reminding that  “At the point that it was engaged in violent struggle, the Party came to recognize the irrefutable truth that it must command the gun”, Xi announced to “maintain the Party’s absolute leadership over the people’s armed forces, follow a Chinese path to military development, enhance the political loyalty of the armed forces.”

He concluded “We will elevate our people’s armed forces to world-class standards so that we are equipped with greater capacity and more reliable means for safeguarding our national sovereignty, security, and development interests.”

“We must continue working to promote the building of a human community with a shared future”

Xi also made statements on future foreign policy and stated the following:

“On the journey ahead, we will remain committed to promoting peace, development, cooperation, and mutual benefit, to an independent foreign policy of peace, and to the path of peaceful development. We will work to build a new type of international relations and a human community with a shared future, promote high-quality development of the Belt and Road Initiative through joint efforts, and use China’s new achievements in development to provide the world with new opportunities. The Party will continue to work with all peace-loving countries and peoples to promote the shared human values of peace, development, fairness, justice, democracy, and freedom. We will continue to champion cooperation over confrontation, to open up rather than closing our doors, and to focus on mutual benefits instead of zero-sum games. We will oppose hegemony and power politics, and strive to keep the wheels of history rolling toward bright horizons.”

The general secretary at the same time warned foreign Powers from interfering in Chinese politics. Xi stated:

“By the same token, we will never allow any foreign force to bully, oppress, or subjugate us. Anyone who would attempt to do so will find themselves on a collision course with a great wall of steel forged by over 1.4 billion Chinese people.”

We must continue to advance the great new project of Party building

The general secretary then returned in his speech again to matters of the CPC:

“With strengthening the Party politically as our overarching principle, we must continue advancing the great new project of Party building in the new era. We must tighten the Party’s organizational system, work hard to train high-caliber officials who have both moral integrity and professional competence, remain committed to improving Party conduct, upholding integrity, and combating corruption, and root out any elements that would harm the Party’s advanced nature and purity and any viruses that would erode its health.”

At the end of his speech, Xi Jinping also made remarks concerning Hong Kong and Taiwan. For Hong Kong, he stated “We will stay true to the letter and spirit of the principle of One Country, Two Systems”, while concerning Taiwan he said that “realizing China’s complete reunification is a historic mission and an unshakable commitment of the Communist Party of China”.

He also warned other countries from intereference, stating the following:

“We must take resolute action to utterly defeat any attempt toward “Taiwan independence,” and work together to create a bright future for national rejuvenation. No one should underestimate the resolve, the will, and the ability of the Chinese people to defend their national sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

The general secretary closed his speech with the words that “A century ago, China was in decline and withering away in the eyes of the world. Today, the image it presents to the world is one of a thriving nation that is advancing with unstoppable momentum toward rejuvenation.”

And closing his speech, he made a call to all party members:

“The Central Committee calls on every one of you to stay true to our Party’s founding mission and stand firm in your ideals and convictions. Acting on the purpose of the Party, you should always maintain close ties with the people, empathize and work with them, stand with them through good times and bad, and continue working tirelessly to realize their aspirations for a better life and to bring still greater glory to the Party and the people.”

The general secretary of the Communist Party of China, Xi Jinping finished his speech with the following two slogans:

“Long live our great, glorious, and correct Party!

Long live our great, glorious, and heroic people!”

United World International

Independent analytical center where political scientists and experts in international relations from various countries exchange their opinions and views.

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May 2024