Why didthe CPC Win the War of Liberation?
Onthe Monument to the People's Heroes standing at the heart of Tian'anmen Squarein Beijing carved a line:
“Eternal glory to the people's heroes who laid down their lives inthe People's War of Liberation and the people's revolution in the three years!”
Thethree years is a magnificent epic of the unyielding struggle of the ChinesePeople's Liberation Army (PLA) in the War of Liberation, recording the Chinesenation's commitment to fight for the country and its people.
Whywas the Communist Party of China (CPC) able to win such a great victory in theWar of Liberation?
Herelies the root: The victory of an army relies on the people.
Duringthis war, with the strong support of the Chinese people, the CPC gainedenormous strength, thereby finishing the reactionary rule of the Kuomintang andestablishing the People's Republic of China.
In1946, just before the war, the Kuomintang had overwhelming advantages not onlyin the number of troops but also in weaponry and other things.It was evenbacked by the United States.
SoChiang Kai-shek had full confidence that the CPC would soon be eliminated.
Buthistory chose to stand on this seemingly "weak" side.
Whatwas the reason behind that contrast?
Howdid Chiang Kai-shek waste the precious window of opportunity?
Theoral history told by Zhang Xueliang in his late years gives us the answer.Hebelieved that it is because the CPC conformed to public opinion that it couldgrow up and thrive.
Whenthe Kuomintang military leaders were busy enriching themselves, squeezing thepeople and involved in rivalries with different factions of their party,
theCPC proposed a slogan, "All the cadres who may go to the countryside forwork should go deep to the rural areas."In the eyes of the PLA, theirlogistics department was composed of ordinary people。
AsWang Shuzeng, a military writer, recalled in an interview,
whenthe Huaihai Campaign started, an old villager joined the supporting troops.
Hetrundled a wheelbarrow for about 100 miles to transport shells to the PLA.
Inthe rainy days, he would take off his clothes and put them over the shells, incase that they would misfire if getting damped.
Finishingthe transport task,he didn't rush to come back home before the shells werefired to enemies.
Atthat time, the transport of military goods and materials to the frontlinelargely relied on ordinary people, who carried them on their shoulders or backsand by their carts.
Afterthe founding of New China, when the commander of Huaihai Campaign Chen Yi wasquestioned how they won this battle,
hesaid that it was the ordinary people who trundled wheelbarrows to help themwin.
Dueto years of war, China's economy has been greatly damaged with extremely lowagricultural productivity, which needs to be restored and rebuilt. To protectthe survival interests of farmers, the CPC proposed to tackle the problemrelated to farmers' land.
TheCPC Central Committee issued "the May Fourth Instructions" on May 4,1946, declaring that they would change the policy of reducing rents andinterest, and distribute the land occupied by landlords to poor farmers.
Oncethe people had land, they would produce food. That would be the basis for theirsurvival.
Andthe people further learnt that only the CPC cared for them in the true sense.
Lateron, in northeastern China with a population of over 10 million, 400,000farmersvolunteered to join the army led by the CPC, which soon changed the powerstructure of the battlefield there.
TheKuomintang, in contrast, forced young men into conscription. So the morale ofthe PLA was far higher than the Kuomintang; gradually, some troops of thelatter even surrendered in an organized way.
Theland reform was not only an economic revolution that boosted nationalproductivity, but also a liberation movement for the Chinese people, therebyenhancing the likelihood for the CPC to seize the ruling power.
Asthe CPC gained a succession of victories in the War of Liberation, newgovernments had to be established at the newly liberated areas.
Duringthis process, the "bean ballot" created in the Shaanxi-Gansu-Ningxiaborder region in the anti-Japanese war enabled the local people to be the truemasters of the country again.
Whenthe American reporter Anna Louise Strong was doing interviews in Yan'an, amodel worker surnamed Yang told her,
"Thebiggest difference between the old society and the new one is that there was noelection in the old society, but in the new society everyone can vote."
Withoutdemocracy, there will be no socialism; only the real democracy can win people'shearts.
Whilethe Kuomintang members were making profits from the disaster and fighting forthe ranks after the victory over Japan, the CPC members showed theirindifference to wealth and fame, and loyalty to their career.
In1955, when Peng Dehuai and Luo Ronghuan,among others,heard that they would beawarded the rank of grand marshal, they all politely declined the rank.
LiuShaoqi and Zhou Enlai also refused to accept any ranks.
Asa senior military officer, Xu Guangda even asked for demotion.
Withvarious factors considered, he was still awarded the rank of senior general.
Buthis salary was one level lower at his repeated request.
XuLiqing, once the general at the regiment level when the War of Liberationstarted,should have been granted the rank of general. But when the CentralMilitary Commission (CMC) was confirming the commission list, he wrote over 10letters to the CMC leaders and insisted on demotion.
MaoZedong praised him, "So marvelous! We can tell a person's thoughts andmorals from his attitudes towards wealth, status and honor. It's always been sosince ancient times."
Inthe exhibition hall about the War of Liberation in the Military Museum ofChinese People's Revolution, there are five remarkable golden Chinesecharacters, "人民的胜利," meaning "People's Victory" in English.
Arelief called "People Supporting the Frontline" in the hall vividlydepicts the scene of the people and the PLA fighting together.
Historyrepresents the past, but will not be forgotten. The history of the CPC is ahistory of fighting for the people and their welfare.
AsXi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, once said, thepeople's army will conquer all as long as they strive for the commonaspirations of the people and are supported by the people. They must bear inmind their responsibility of serving the people whole heartedly.They are thepeople's army at all times and under all circumstances.