It is a characteristic of mechanical and idealist political thought to imagine that the ruling party in society has a more-or-less free hand in governing society. If we accept this then all the tendencies history exhibits towards the degeneration of regimes into despotism, corruption and inefficiency have to be explained subjectively. That is clearly unscientific, and the Chiang Kai-shek Regime was no exception to this.

We have already seen how whole layers of the best cadres in the party had been won to Trotskyism, and tens of thousands more had been executed or simply left political activity in the face of victorious counterrevolution. But the abstract, one-dimensional and ultra-left line adopted at the Sixth CCP Congress led to several more hare-brained insurrections. [Read part one here]

At the moment, the Chinese capitalist class, on the whole, is happy to go along with the status quo. They see no alternative, and are terrified of lifting the lid on the anger of the working class, therefore they seek stability at all costs.

Xi Jinping, relatively unknown in the West, will be China’s President for the next ten years, that is, if he can keep a lid on the simmering pot of anger that China has become. The new Prime Minister is Li Keqiang, apparently the outgoing President’s favoured successor.

In August and September Japan’s manoeuvres of the disputed islands of Diaoyu provoked some of the largest demonstrations in China since the uprising of Tiananmen Square in 1989. The dispute over the islands is predominantly an imperialist conflict over control of trade routes and oil resources. However, the protests in China went beyond the level of expressing anti-Japanese sentiment. In fact, although the government did attempt to limit them to this, the protests were as much against the regime in Beijing as against Japan’s aggressive manoeuvres.

As the Chinese Communist Party gathers for its 18th Congress, we look back at the 1925-27 revolution, which was a heroic attempt of the Chinese workers to follow in the footsteps of the October 1917 Russian Revolution. However, due to its unprepared and irresolute leadership, it went down to a tragic defeat. Failed revolutions are always the greatest of tragedies. However, the only way of really honouring the many victims of the counter-revolution that ensued is to study the revolution and learn from its mistakes.

MARXIST.COM HOLIDAY BREAK

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