Video about Isabel Crook: She saw history in the making

This short biographical video from CGTN tells the story of Isabel Crook. Isabel and her husband David were prominent supporters of the Chinese Revolution from its early days, witnessing and reporting on how the CPC organised land reform in the village of Ten Mile Inn, Hebei, in 1947 (two years before the founding of the People’s Republic). They continued to live in China and to be friends of its ongoing revolution. Isabel is now 105 years old, and still lives in China.


Chinese and Cuban media report on Xi Jinping phone call with Miguel Diaz-Canel

On August 30, 2021, Chinese President Xi Jinping had a phone conversation with Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel. The two sides reaffirmed their strong friendship and support for each other’s path of socialist development. China-Cuba bilateral ties were described has having “become a model for cooperation between developing countries.” We reproduce below two reports of the conversation, one from CGTN and the other from Prensa Latina.


President Xi Jinping reaffirms support for Cuba no matter how the situation changes

CGTN, 30 August 2021

Chinese President Xi Jinping reaffirmed China’s support of Cuba no matter how the situation changes during a phone conversation with Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel on Monday.

In the phone call, Xi hailed the remarkable achievements Cuba made through relentless struggle under the strong leadership of the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC).

Continue reading Chinese and Cuban media report on Xi Jinping phone call with Miguel Diaz-Canel

The first international Marxist study group in Shanghai

We are pleased to republish this fascinating history, written by Zhang Wei and published in the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries‘ quarterly magazine ‘Voice of Friendship’ (June 2021), about the first international Marxist study group in Shanghai. The group was supported by Soong Chingling and included such legendary friends of China as Rewi Alley, Agnes Smedley and Helen Foster Snow.


In 1934, encouraged and supported by Soong Ching Ling, about 20 Chinese and foreign leftists established the first international Marxist study group in Shanghai. They studied classic theories, conducted social research, discussed current affairs and actively joined in and assisted the struggle of the Communist Party of China. In fact, the group became the foreign ally of the Chinese revolution.

Three core members

Rewi Alley, a core member of the study group, was a social activist and writer from New Zealand. At the time, he was chief inspector of the fire department and the chief of the industrial department under the municipal council in the Shanghai international settlement. He was shocked to witness a large number of Chinese people in deep distress during an inspection of the factories. He gave an important description of the study group in the 1980s when recalling those days. He presented a clear list of the members of the group as follows:

“In 1934, like-minded people gradually gathered together to discuss politics. The idea was mainly put forward by German political economy writer Hans Shippe. He wrote articles for the English magazine Pacific Affairs under the pen name Asiaticus. His Chinese name is Xibo. Agnes Smedley said that “we were supposed to know the theories,” but she was too busy and didn’t understand the theories herself. Alec Camplin, an electrical engineer who lived in the same apartment with me in a three-story building on Yuyuan Road, joined our study group. There was also Dr. Hatem, whom Agnes considered a potential participant for the revolution. Other members included the young Austrian progressive Ruth Weiss; Hans Shippe’s wife, Gertrude Rosenberg; the Dutch manager of the leftist Zeitgeist Book Store, Irene Wiedemeyer; four secretaries of the Young Women’s Christian Association, namely, Talitha Gerlach, Maud Russell, Lillian Haass, and Deng Yuzhi; and a teacher at Medhurst High School, Cao Liang. Hans Shippe served as our political instructor. Later, he was killed by enemies while working in the New Fourth Army at Yimeng Mountain, Shandong.”

Continue reading The first international Marxist study group in Shanghai

Foreign Ministry spokesperson denounces US sanctions against Cuba

At a Ministry of Foreign Affairs press conference on 4 August 2021, the spokesperson was asked for China’s response to the announcement by the US of new sanctions against Cuba. The response demonstrates China’s solidarity with socialist Cuba and its strict adherence to international law and the principles of non-interference, global cooperation.


Q: It is reported that on July 30, the US Treasury Department announced sanctions against Cuba’s national revolutionary police and its top two officials, citing repression of anti-government protests. During a meeting with Cuban-American figures at the White House, US President Joe Biden said that there would be more sanctions, “unless there’s some drastic change in Cuba”. In response, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez said on July 30 that “these arbitrary measures, coupled with disinformation and aggression, are used to justify the inhumane blockade of Cuba”. Separately, 30 ventilators provided by the Chinese government to the Cuban government arrived in Havana on July 31. What is China’s comment?

A: China firmly opposes any move to arbitrarily impose unilateral sanctions and interfere in other countries’ internal affairs under the pretext of so-called “freedom”, “human rights” and “democracy”. The recent US sanctions against Cuban institution and officials severely violate the basic norms governing international relations and once again demonstrate to the world the typical US-style double standard and bullyism. As is known to all, it is the economic, commercial and financial embargo of the US that gravely impedes Cuba’s efforts to improve its economy and people’s livelihood, and tramples on the Cuban people’s right to subsistence and development. We urge the US to heed the universal appeal of the international community, immediately and completely lift the sanctions and embargo against Cuba, and immediately stop making excuses to engage in gross interference and destabilization.

Enough with sanctions! The right way is to support. Recently, China and many other friendly countries and international organizations have extended a helping hand to Cuba, aiding the Cuban government and people to fight the epidemic and improve people’s livelihood, illustrating that true friendship stands the test of adversity. China will continue to implement the consensus reached by the leaders of the two countries, deepen China-Cuba friendly relations and firmly support Cuba’s efforts to overcome the impact of the epidemic, promote economic development and maintain social stability.

Evo Morales on China-Bolivia cooperation and the nature of Chinese policy

Embedded below is a lovely short video featuring former Bolivian president Evo Morales, leader of the Movement Towards Socialism (MAS), discussing his thoughts on China, the Belt and Road Initiative, China-Bolivia relations, and his impressions of Xi Jinping. The video, produced by Xinhua, first appeared on Twitter.

Text

The best policy is one that supports social equality, that supports, helps, and invests in improving the social and economic situation of the poorest people. China’s policies aim to help countries, peoples, and social sectors that are often forgotten.

China develops, and helps, invests, without any conditions, just to support our development. China is always ready to cooperate unconditionally.

What I understood is that he (President Xi Jinping) treats us brother to brother, as equals. I never felt that they looked at us from above. That is the difference, even with other countries. Again I want to tell you, a population like China, with more than 1,400 million inhabitants dealing with a nation of little more than 10 million inhabitants, treating them as equals, draws my attention. I feel that it is a cultural fact in humanity.

The Belt and Road Initiative is an impressive initiative proposed by China. Not only the Chinese people, but many people (in the world) are also going to benefit from the Belt and Road Initiative. Bolivia’s interoceanic railway project coincides with this Belt and Road plan proposed by China.

I respect, admire, and love the Chinese president, the CPC, and the Chinese people, as they put humanity in their thoughts.

International figures support the CPC and PRC throughout history

We are republishing this lovely article from Beijing Review highlighting the life and contributions of Rewi Alley, the New Zealand-born writer, social reformer and educator who spent 60 years of his life working in China.


The life path of many an international figure has crossed with that of the Communist Party of China (CPC) over the past 100 years. As China witnessed tremendous progress and change, their stories, too, have been remembered. Rewi Alley (1897-1987) was one of those international friends, who shared long-term ties with the CPC dating all the way back to the earliest of days when the Party was embracing the struggle to save the nation from peril.

The New Zealand-born writer, social reformer and educator spent 60 years of his life working in China. He arrived in Shanghai on April 21, 1927, and later decided to align himself with China’s working class after witnessing their trials and tribulations. 

During the Chinese People’s War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression (1931-1945), Alley and a handful of his both Chinese and foreign associates, including American journalist Edgar Snow and his wife, initiated and organized the Gung Ho movement, short for the Chinese Industrial Cooperatives movement, in 1938, mobilizing mass production to support the war effort. By 1942, they had set up about 2,000 such cooperatives.

“The movement made important contributions to the Chinese people’s victory against the invaders and the success in China’s new democratic revolution,” Lin Songtian, President of the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship With Foreign Countries (CPAFFC), a national organization engaged in people-to-people diplomacy, told Beijing Review.

Additionally, from the mid-1940s to the early 1950s, Alley founded the Shandan Bailie Schools in the northwestern county of Shandan in Gansu Province. Through the creation of a work-study program, students would use their brains as well as brawn. The school ended up generating a host of young technical staffs ready to support the country’s economic construction.

“After the founding of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in 1949, Alley spared no efforts in supporting China’s development, promoting the people-to-people friendship between China and other countries, and safeguarding world peace,” Lin added.

Alley passed away in Beijing on December 27, 1987.

On July 10, the former residence of Alley in Beijing was reopened after having been renovated in memory of his years in China.

A friendly p(a)lace 

Located in the CPAFFC compound, the house is also known as the Friendship Palace. However, strictly speaking, it did not just belong to Alley as four other expats also took up residence there at one time or another, according to Lin.

Many people must have heard about Chairman Mao Zedong’s assertion that “all reactionaries are paper tigers.” It owes its publicity to an American journalist by the name of Anna Louise Strong, who once lived in the house. During her fifth trip to China in 1946, Strong interviewed Mao in Yan’an, the headquarters of the CPC Central Committee from 1935 to 1948. She then had the chance to listen to this famous thesis and went on to include the term “paper tiger” in her book.

In 1958, Strong, then 73, visited China for the sixth time. This time around, she decided to not return to her old home and instead adopted China as her new haven where she would live out the rest of her days. On March 30, 1970, this American writer with a profound passion for China passed away from illness in the country that she considered her “ideal resting place.”

Other residents included Chilean painter Jose Venturelli, the first well-known Latin American artist to visit China after the founding of the PRC. Venturelli, who died in Beijing in 1988, always expressed a deep concern for those living and working at the grassroots throughout his body of work. Then there was American activist Robert F. Williams, who stood at the forefront in the fight for African American rights, and Japanese politician Kinkazu Saionji, who was active in promoting good relations between Japan and China following his move to Beijing in the late 1950s.

Michael Crook, Chairman of the International Committee for the Promotion of Chinese Industrial Cooperatives (ICCIC), established in 1939 based on the Gung Ho movement, attended the ceremony together with his mother, 106-year-old Isabel Crook, who has spent most of her life in China, teaching English and training students.

Aside from those who actually lived here, many more made their choice to come and stay in China and support the cause of peace and justice, including Korean composer Zheng Lucheng, who joined China’s fight against Japanese aggression, according to Michael Crook.

New chapters 

Lebanese-American doctor George Hatem, known as Ma Haide in China, was the first foreigner to join the CPC, in 1937, and the first expat to obtain Chinese citizenship after the founding of the PRC, in 1950. Alley used to live with Hatem in a cave house in Yan’an back in early 1939, according to Zhou Youma, Hatem’s son.

Zhou scattered both Alley’s and his father’s ashes across the places dearest to them in China. “With my own hand, I sent them, two dear friends who forged a friendship through thick and thin, back to the land where they had devoted their lives to the Chinese people,” he said.

Zhou added that he and the descendants of Alley and other international friends of China are also part of the endeavor to realize the great rejuvenation for the Chinese nation. “We will keep putting our best foot forward,” Zhou said.

“Today, under the leadership of the CPC, we have realized the first centenary goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and brought about a historic resolution to the problem of absolute poverty in China,” Lin said. “I believe our international friends can be satisfied with the CPC’s achievements, and proud of the contributions they themselves have made.”

Michael Crook said if Alley and the other residents who used to live in the house had known they would serve as an inspiration to so many Chinese and foreigners in the pursuit of peace and development, they would have been absolutely thrilled.

In 2017, Chinese President Xi Jinping called on the ICCIC to continue its international cultural exchanges and make new contributions to world peace and development in a letter responding to the ICCIC and Beijing Bailie University, one of the Bailie schools.

Beijing Bailie University has managed to uphold the notion of vocational education as championed by its founding and former presidents, and over the course of its history has cultivated a large talent pool for China’s modernization.

The ICCIC, on its part, has played a role in helping to lift people out of absolute poverty, proving an enduring inspiration to all international friends, according to Michael Crook. “We are continuing Alley’s legacy,” he said. “Let’s try and answer Xi’s call for Gung Ho and start writing some new chapters in international friendship.” 

Documentary: Isabel Crook – We belonged and this is why we stayed

This feature length documentary aired by CGTN last week provides a vivid account of the lifelong dedication to the Chinese revolution on the part of communist fighters David and Isabel Crook and of the love and respect in which they have been held by successive generations of Chinese people from all walks of life.


Michael Crook in conversation with Dr Frances Wood

In this interesting video of a webinar organised by our friends in the Society for Anglo-Chinese Understanding (SACU) the distinguished Sinologist Dr Frances Wood discusses with Michael Crook about his family’s long connection with China, the Chinese cooperative movement and some of the many British people who supported and helped the Chinese revolution.

Michael was born and brought up in China. He is the son of David and Isabel Crook,  communists, internationalists and staunch supporters of the Chinese revolution. Born in 1915, Isabel still lives in Beijing. In 2019, President Xi Jinping awarded her the Friendship Medal of the People’s Republic of China. Among the small number of other recipients was Cuban revolutionary leader Raúl Castro.


Raúl Castro and ‘The East is Red’

We are reproducing this article from the Global Times, published on 9 July 2021, about Raúl Castro’s longstanding connection with socialist China. With the US and its allies stepping up their hostility against the socialist world, it is more important than ever to build solidarity against imperialism.


“The east is red. The sun rises. China has a Mao Zedong…” On the afternoon of November 18, 2008, a man in his seventies was singing in Chinese Dong Fang Hong or The East is Red, a most well-known song in China, on the Tarara Campus of the University of Havana. On this campus set up specially for Chinese students in Cuba, the several hundred Chinese students present were amazed by this improvised performance. They never expected “grandpa Raúl” would know this song, let alone to sing it with such a good rhythm and pronunciation. This “grandpa Raúl” is Raúl Castro Ruz, brother of the leader of the Cuban Revolution Fidel Castro, and then President of the Cuban Council of State and the Council of Ministers.

Raúl Castro Ruz

Raúl Castro has quite a long story with the song The East is Red. In 1953, the 22-year-old Raúl met a delegation from the People’s Republic of China when attending the fourth World Festival of Youth and Students in Bucharest. Deeply impressed by the performance of The East is Red by the young Chinese, he learned the song in just a few days and kept the melody in his heart ever since. When Cuba commemorated the 100th anniversary of the birth of Mao Zedong in 1993, Raúl, then First Vice President of the Cuban Council of State and the Council of Ministers, led Cuban officials and the Chinese embassy staff in a chorus of The East is Red. Since then, the song has become a fixture when Raúl and Chinese comrades get together. His sonorous singing has been heard at Hotel Nacional de Cuba, Plaza Vieja in Havana, and the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, among many other places.

Raúl’s love for the song speaks to his longstanding, profound affections for China. He was the messenger who contributed to the establishment of diplomatic ties between the PRC and Cuba, the first Latin American country to do so. In the late 1950s, almost a decade after the founding of the PRC, quite a few Latin American countries still maintained so-called “diplomatic relations” with Taiwan. In July 1959, a Chinese press delegation visited Cuba, hoping to get a sense of Cuba’s attitude toward establishing diplomatic ties. In a press conference, the delegation asked Fidel Castro what was the expectation of the Cuban people for the people in China and Asia and Africa. Fidel said that the Chinese and Cuban people shared the same need in their fight for economic independence, and that most Cubans supported this need and he himself hoped that the Chinese people could make greater achievements. The next day, Raúl had a private meeting with the delegation where he asked China to send a liaison and, when conditions were right, set up an embassy in Cuba. This message reassured the Chinese delegation, bringing the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries officially on the agenda. One year later, Cuba became the first Latin American country to establish diplomatic ties with the People’s Republic.

The Cuban economy was hit hard following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Stressing that “beans are more important than cannons,” Raúl launched several small-scale market-oriented economic reforms. He believed that Cuba should draw on the development experience of China and other countries and explore a development path of socialism compatible with Cuba’s national conditions. Raúl showed a strong interest in China’s reform and opening-up which by then had been on-going for over a decade as well as the various changes China had undergone.

In 1997, Raúl Castro paid his first visit to China and stayed for 18 days for an in-depth understanding of China’s development experience. He travelled to Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, the forefront of China’s reform and opening-up, where he took a close look at how China built special economic zones and reformed its state-owned enterprises. Through all the projects and presentations on that trip, Raúl gained a first-hand experience of the tremendous changes brought about by reform and opening-up in China. After returning to Cuba, Raúl shared with Cuban government officials what he had learned from his visit and carried out pilot reforms of some Cuban enterprises based on China’s experience. He visited China again in 2005 and 2012, during which he learned more about China’s reform measures and commended on multiple occasions China’s development experience.

Raúl said that the Cuban people are proud of the Cuba-China friendship. He pointed out that as Cuba explores a development path in line with its national conditions, it values China’s successful experience in development and would love to increase communication and mutual-learning with China on governance and socioeconomic development. During his talks with President Xi Jinping in 2014, Raúl fondly recalled his previous visits to China, and stressed again that China is a great country; it will surely succeed in building socialism with Chinese characteristics under the leadership of the Communist Party of China and make greater contributions to world peace and human progress with its own development.

On September 29, 2019, Raúl Castro Ruz was awarded the “Friendship Medal” of the People’s Republic of China for his long, outstanding contribution to China-Cuba relations and China-Latin America friendship. The then Cuban Ambassador to China Miguel Angel Ramirez Ramos said that the Cuban people are very much delighted by this award, for it was not only an honor for Raúl Castro, but also an embodiment of the friendship between the two peoples. With the passage of time, the everlasting friendship between China and Cuba epitomized by the song The East is Red will remain unshakable and grow from strength to strength.

Evo Morales speech on multipolarity and Bolivia-China cooperation

The following is the text of a speech given by Evo Morales, former president of Bolivia and leader of the Movement to Socialism – Political Instrument for the Sovereignty of the Peoples (MAS-IPSP), at the CPC and World Political Parties Summit held on 6 July 2021. Translated by Carlos Martinez.


Greetings to brother Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China and president of the People’s Republic of China, and to the presidents and leaders of the political parties of the world.

On this day of enormous importance for the Chinese people, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China, I send a revolutionary salute in the name of the Movement to Socialism – Political Instrument for the Sovereignty of the Peoples (MAS-IPSP) and of the Bolivian people.

Sisters and brothers, China is more than 17,300 kilometres from my country. But this distance has not been, nor is it now, an obstacle to deepening our ties of brotherhood and cooperation. Even more, the Plurinational State of Bolivia and the People’s Republic of China maintain a relationship characterised by wide-ranging and diverse cooperation and reciprocity, which in the course of 36 years of diplomatic relations have allowed for the development of political trust, economic complementarity and mutual learning.

As a trade union leader, I have always admired the revolution which China carried out over the course of decades – a revolution which has made huge achievements, improving the lives of 1.4 billion Chinese people.

For example, in February, China officially announced that it had lifted 770 million rural inhabitants out of extreme poverty, meaning that China represents more than 70 percent of the global figure for poverty reduction.

The policies of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics have put China on the road to becoming the largest economy in the world; an economy that works in a joined-up way with other countries and benefits the peoples of the world; the opposite to that which was imposed on us for decades by the US, in which predatory, individualistic and competitive capitalism looted our people’s resources for the benefit of transnational corporations.

China’s commitment to multilaterialism, to international law and to the United Nations is extremely important in facing up to global challenges.

The pandemic shows us how connected we are and how fragile life is. The current challenges such as the climate crisis and global inequality can only be resolved on the basis of truly global coooperation.

Furthermore, I want to highlight the impetus and the spirit of global cooperation that China projects through its Belt and Road Initiative, which will help to lift millions of people out of poverty in the participating countries.

Overcoming distances is a priority to strengthen our economies. It’s for this reason in South America that we have planned (along with China) the construction of the Central Bi-Oceanic railway, which will connect the Atlantic coast with the Pacific coast.

Sisters and brothers, on this important date, I want to thank the government and people of China for their solidarity with our country from the beginning of the pandemic. Up to now, we have received 2.7 million vaccine doses, and soon 6 million doses will follow, helping us to contain the Covid-19 virus. We are sure that only the unity of the peoples will allow us to overcome this global crisis.

The Movement to Socialism – Political Instrument for the Sovereignty of the Peoples, like the Communist Party of China, has demonstrated that it can govern with honesty, dignity and sovereignty, without submitting itself to the interests of the US empire. At 13 years, 9 months and 18 days, our democratic cultural revolution has brought about a social, political and economic transformation without precedent in the history of Bolivia. We have nationalised our natural resources. We have recovered the strategic companies for the benefit of the people. As a result, we have been able to reduce extreme poverty from 38.2 percent to 15.2 percent.

The size of the economy has increased considerably. Nominal GDP increased from 9.5 billion dollars in 2005 to 42 billion dollars in 2018.

Again thanks to the nationalisation of strategic resources and the resulting increase in fiscal income, transfers from the central government to the regional governments and to universities increased almost four-fold. Our foreign reserves increased from 1.7 billion dollars in 2005 to 15.1 billion dollars in 2014.

And we can continue enumerating more achievevements of the democratic and cultural revolution. These achievements benefit older people, professionals, youth, children, and run counter to the interests of the national oligarchs, who did not want a government which met the needs of the people.

Sisters and brothers, on 10 December 2019, radical right-wing groups, organised and financed by the US and its allies, perpetrated a coup in my country in order to gain control over our natural resources. This led to the formation of a de facto government which oversaw a rise in racism and intolerance towards the indigenous community and towards the poorest sections of Bolivian society.

But thanks to the conscience and unity of the people, on 18 October 2020, the MAS-IPSP consolidated itself as the largest political force in the history of Bolivia. Our brother Lucho Arce was elected president with more than 55 percent of the vote.

Brother Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China, the Chinese and Bolivians are both peoples with deep roots, thousands of years old. Those roots define our cultural identity and our outlook on life.

To finish, in my role as leader of MAS-IPSP, I express our will to construct spaces of cooperation and complementarity between our parties, joining forces to push forward a bright future for the people of both China and Bolivia.

Many thanks.

Declaration of the launch of the ‘Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the United Nations’

We are republishing the announcement of this important step taken by Algeria, Angola, Belarus, Bolivia, Cambodia, China, Cuba, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Iran, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Nicaragua, the State of Palestine, Russia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Syria, and Venezuela, launching the ‘Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the United Nations’. We believe this launch marks a significant step forward in the shared struggle of the peoples of the world towards a multipolar future.


We, representatives of Algeria, Angola, Belarus, Bolivia, Cambodia, China, Cuba, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Iran, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Nicaragua, the State of Palestine, Russia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Syria, and Venezuela to the United Nationsare pleased to announce the official launch and establishment of the “Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the United Nations”.

We seize this opportunity to reaffirm that the Charter of the United Nations and its purposes and principles remain timeless, universal, and that they are all indispensable for preserving and promoting international peace and security, the rule of law, economic development and social progress, as well as all human rights for all. Similarly, upholding the Charter of the United Nations is fundamental for ensuring both the realization of the three pillars of the Organization and fulfillment of the yearnings of our peoples, which will ultimately benefit our common efforts to address the complex and emerging challenges and threats faced by humanity and to establish a peaceful and prosperous world and a just and equitable world order.

We renew our commitment to the defense of the Charter of the United Nations, which constitutes not only a milestone and a true act of faith that still today fills us with hope on the best of humanity, bringing us together to ensure the common wellbeing of present and future generations, but also with that code of conduct that has ruled international relations between States for the past 75 years, on the basis of, among others, principles such as the sovereign equality of States – large and small –, the right to self-determination, non-interference in the internal affairs of States, and the respect for the territorial integrity and political independence of all nations.

We reaffirm our determination to fulfill our promise with “We the Peoples of the United Nations”, as well as our pledge of leaving no one behind, while stressing the need to ensure the prevalence of legality over force. In this regard, we vow to spare no effort in preserving, promoting and defending at every relevant fora the prevalence and validity of the Charter of the United Nations, which, in the current international juncture, has a renewed and even more important value and relevance. We also underscore the need to avoid selective approaches and call for the full compliance with and strict adherence to both the letter and spirit of the tenets contained in the Charter of the United Nations, which are at the core of multilateralism and serve as the basis for modern day international law. We further stress that abiding in an effective manner by the provisions of the Charter of the United Nations fosters peaceful and friendly relations and cooperation amongst States and ultimately ensures international peace and security.

We invite those members of the international community that are committed with an effective and inclusive multilateralism, with the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, and with the values of dialogue, tolerance and solidarity, to consider joining the Group of Friends at their earliest convenience, as we continue to work together in advancing our common agenda.

New York, 6 July 2021

The internationalism of the Communist Party of China

The following is the text of a speech given by Keith Bennett at a recent webinar hosted by the Morning Star and Friends of Socialist China to celebrate the centenary of the CPC. Keith shines a light on the CPC’s history of internationalism and the different forms this has taken over the years.

Comrades and Friends

On behalf of Friends of Socialist China, we are pleased to join our friends and comrades of the Morning Star in celebrating the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China. The role of the Morning Star is becoming ever more vital in opposing the new cold war and in defending and supporting China.

Friends of Socialist China is a new platform based on supporting the People’s Republic of China and spreading understanding of Chinese socialism. We have a website and a presence on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Our first webinar, held last Saturday on the theme of ‘China’s Path to Zero Poverty’, was watched live by several hundred people and featured speakers from China, Pakistan, India, Nigeria, Bolivia, Britain and the United States.

The Communist Party of China is the world’s most important political party. With more than 95 million members, leave alone the hundreds of millions more organised in diverse mass organisations upholding the party’s leadership, its membership is greater than all the other communist and workers parties in the world, and all other political parties professing a commitment to socialism, combined.

The CPC is a Marxist political party. It leads the world’s most populous country and the world’s second (or according to at least one method of calculation first) largest economy. China is a permanent member of the UN Security Council and today, be it international financial crisis, global pandemic, the looming threat of climate change or regional hotspots, no major issue facing humanity can be successfully tackled without China’s active and constructive input.

The centenary of the CPC is, therefore, or at least ought to be, an occasion for celebration not only for the Chinese people but also for all socialists, anti-imperialists and progressive people throughout the world.

Continue reading The internationalism of the Communist Party of China

Xi Jinping: Strengthening Cooperation Among Political Parties to Jointly Pursue the People’s Wellbeing

This keynote address by president Xi Jinping, delivered at the CPC and World Political Parties Summit on 6 July 2021, succinctly expresses China’s vision of multilateralism and multipolarity: working together with all countries to shape a shared future for humanity. The English translation was originally published on Xinhua.


Your Excellencies leaders of political parties,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Friends,

It gives me great pleasure to join you, leaders of more than 500 political parties, political and other organisations from over 160 countries as well as the ten thousand and more representatives of political parties and various circles, at this cloud event to discuss the important question of “working for the people’s wellbeing and the responsibility of political parties”, just as the Communist Party of China (CPC) reaches its one hundredth anniversary. Over the past weeks, more than 600 political parties, political and other organisations from over 170 countries have sent 1500-plus congratulatory messages and letters on the CPC’s centenary conveying their goodwill and best wishes. I wish to take this opportunity to express to all of you, on behalf of the Communist Party of China, our heartfelt thanks!

A few days ago, we celebrated the CPC’s centenary with a grand gathering. Over the past hundred years, the CPC has united and led the Chinese people in working ceaselessly towards the tremendous transformation of the Chinese nation from standing up and growing prosperous to becoming strong. Over the past hundred years, the CPC has persisted in closely associating the future of the Chinese people with that of other peoples of the world and steered the course of China’s development amid the general trend of the world and the currents of the times to promote common development and prosperity of all countries.

The historic achievements the CPC and the Chinese people have made would not have been possible without the generous support of world peoples.

Here, on behalf of the CPC and the Chinese people, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to political parties, peoples and friends of all countries who have cared about, supported and helped the CPC and the cause of revolution, development and reform in China.

Continue reading Xi Jinping: Strengthening Cooperation Among Political Parties to Jointly Pursue the People’s Wellbeing

Wang Yi: Uphold World Peace and Promote Human Progress

We reproduce below this important keynote speech by State Councilor Wang Yi at the opening ceremony of the 9th World Peace Forum, Tsinghua University, 3 July 2021.


Distinguished Guests,
Friends,

It is a great pleasure to join you at Tsinghua University for the 9th World Peace Forum. This year marks the first decade of the forum. Over the past ten years, the forum has embraced the trend of the times and focused on the world’s most defining challenges. It has provided a source of wisdom for deeper understanding between China and the world and contributed its fair share to advancing world peace. Its global influence as a platform for exchange of ideas and insights is increasingly growing. At the outset, let me extend warm congratulations on the achievement of the forum and on the opening of its ninth edition.

Just two days ago, we held grand celebrations to mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC). In the important speech made on that occasion, General Secretary Xi Jinping gave a thorough account of the great accomplishments of the CPC leading the Chinese people through the past 100 years of struggle, and made a solemn declaration that China has realized the first centenary goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, and is now marching in confident strides toward the second centenary goal of building a great modern socialist country in all respects. General Secretary Xi reviewed the course of history and envisioned the journey ahead, emphasizing that the CPC always keeps in mind the future of humanity and stands ready to work together with all progressive forces in the world on the way forward.

Throughout the past 100 years, the CPC has remained committed to peaceful development and worked tirelessly to uphold world peace and stability. The Chinese nation cherishes peace, amity and harmony, values that have been honored and carried forward throughout history. The CPC has written on its flag the faith in peace, development and win-win cooperation. From actively promoting an international united front against Fascism during the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression to adopting an independent foreign policy of peace after the founding of New China, and from putting forward the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence to accurately identifying peace and development as the theme of our times, the CPC has unremittingly pursued the path of peaceful development. It has remained committed never to seek hegemony, territorial expansion or spheres of influence, and has achieved development by upholding world peace and promoted world peace through its own development.

Continue reading Wang Yi: Uphold World Peace and Promote Human Progress

China stands on the side of the developing world

Foreign Minister Wang Yi on 25 June 2021:

In the five decades since joining the United Nations, China has upheld the legitimate rights and interests of fellow developing countries and spoken up for the developing world. Past, present and in the future, China always stands together with developing countries. China’s vote in the United Nations is always for the well-being of developing countries and for justice in the world.

China stands with Cuba against the blockade

Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Zhao Lijian on 24 June 2021:

China always believes that we should respect the right of each country to independently choose its social system and development path, uphold international order based on international law, safeguard international fairness and justice, and oppose unilateral coercive measures imposed on other countries by military, political, economic or other means. China urges the US to immediately and fully lift its economic, commercial and financial embargo against Cuba, which is the universal call of the international community.

Salute on the Communist Party of China’s 100th Anniversary

We are republishing this useful article from Workers World outlining the history of the Communist Party of China and calling on progressives and anti-war activists in the West to oppose the US-led New Cold War.


Workers World Party, founded in 1959, is a Marxist-Leninist party in the U.S. From its beginning, Workers World has been a staunch supporter of the 1949 Chinese Revolution, with great appreciation for the guiding role of the Communist Party of China in that revolution. As a revolutionary working-class party in the center of world imperialism, we are determined to defend all the gains of our class on a world scale. We intend to make the following essay saluting the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China available to readers in the United States, so we have included some history not widely known in the U.S. that shows the differences between the U.S. and China. 

For 5,000 years, China was one of the world’s most advanced societies in culture, art and technology. It came under attack in the 18th and 19th centuries from powers whose rapid capitalist development gave them a temporary advantage in military and industrial power. This advantage led to several hundred years of the colonial looting of China and much of East and South Asia. Unequal treaties and military occupation reduced China to a country of staggering poverty, famines, social chaos, enforced underdevelopment and wars.

Most people brought up in the United States know little of the past intervention by the U.S. and other imperialist countries into China. They are unaware that, in the 19th century, armed units from the U.S., Britain, France, Germany and Japan imposed their will on Chinese cities. The U.S. Navy had fleets of armored ships patrolling Chinese rivers and coastal waters. This most brutal gunboat diplomacy imposed unequal treaties to reinforce their military occupations, while making China pay these imperialist countries huge indemnities. With U.S. participation, Britain unleashed two Opium Wars on China to enforce its “right” to sell opium. They called it “free trade.” 

When students mobilized against Chinese rulers who were compliant to the imperialists, they were repressed. A nationalist movement grew. Until 1921, despite the courage of its young participants, they were unable to coalesce into a movement that could mobilize the masses of people — one-quarter of the world at that time — and liberate China. 

Continue reading Salute on the Communist Party of China’s 100th Anniversary

Tribute to Dennis Etler (1947-2021)

This tribute to Dennis Etler was written by Rebecca Chan, Kassem Tofailli, Swan Oneswan, Michael Trinh, Luciana Bohne, and first appeared on the Xi Jinping – China’s Exceptional President Facebook page, of which he was the founder.


With what words to mourn Dennis Etler, who died so suddenly and unexpectedly on 3 June 2021?

As his moderators on the page, Xi Jinping–China’s Exceptional President, we are at a loss to express our sadness at the passing of the founder.

We, therefore, seek solace in remembering and honoring his thought, life, and work.

The sheer scope of Dennis’ interest in China, past and present, and his exceptional command of what he knew, continues to humble us–as do his knowledge of historic detail and his extraordinary powers of synthesis in his essays and articles.

Dennis was an academic. He held a doctorate in anthropology from the University of California, Berkley, and conducted archaeological and anthropological research in China throughout the 1980s and 1990s.He taught at the college and university level for over 35 years.

But, he was the sort of teacher committed not only to his profession but also to the social good. This drew him to China, where he saw great strides in human progress.

In his retirement, he founded the discussion page Xi Jinping–China’s Exceptional President.. He worked tirelessly until it grew to number 35,000 members–and he valued and took pride in the membership’s active contributions.

On the page, he showed what true leadership entails: modesty, integrity, respect, and caring. As many of you know, he was solicitous to questions, queries, and suggestions. He had the personal style of the compassionate comrade.

For that is what Dennis was before anything else–a comrade. He carried a colossal amount of work on his back, and yet he always found time for the personal.

He founded the page originally to provide a forum for discussing the Marxist-Leninist philosophy of Xi Jinping, at a time when the socialist character of China’s government was an object of derision among many Western leftists. In fact, Xi Jinping was steering the Communist Party of China back to ideological origins and founding principles.

As under Xi’s leadership, the party rid itself of corrupt and ideologically dodgy officials and grew more compact and unified, China grew stronger, more self-determined, more decisive.

Xi’s visionary Belt and Road initiative, launched in 2013, finally alerted the Western powers that China was not likely to be destabilized by internal forces, guided from abroad. At this point, the Western powers began their false propaganda war on China.

Dennis’ original focus for the Xi discussion page necessarily shifted from ideology to combating disinformation, as the most immediately imperative defensive front.

This necessary shift, conditioned by facts on the ground, is an example of Dennis’ own Marxist practice and, too, the reflection of his learning from China’s theoretical “socialism with Chinese characteristics.” Original intentions are fine, but changing reality necessitate adaptations.

Dennis, in recent months, was invited to become a correspondent for CGTN. The articles he wrote for CGTN revealed to readers the dark side of American history, a necessary counter-narrative to Washington’s relentless assaults of painting China as abuser of human rights.

In addition, Dennis conducted interviews for Iran’s PressTV, looked forward to projects that would extend the reach of the Xi page to embrace and affect more and more people in their quest for consciousness of the turn that history was taking humankind.

For Dennis, If China was the center of change, humanity was the horizon.

Dennis was an internationalist. That is why the Xi page is so rich, so appreciative of the global diversity of its members.

It remains for us to conclude that we, the moderators, are determined to continue his legacy; to keep the page going, to serve the members what they need and want to know.

Above all to be sharers in common work.

To Dennis: you are not gone, dear comrade. People like you never die. They live in the consciousness of people whose minds they have changed and caused to be alive with thirst for truth and justice.

To Dennis’ family: our deepest sympathy and condolences.

To the members: the long march continues. Dennis is with us and leads us still.

Rest in power, Kenneth Kaunda (28 April 1924 – 17 June 2021)

Kaunda was a key leader of the North Rhodesian struggle for liberation from British colonialism, first president of Zambia, lifelong friend of socialist China, and personal friend of Mao Zedong, Zhou Enlai and Deng Xiaoping.

China helped us to struggle for our independence. China helped many other countries in Africa to get their independence. Now they are working with us to help us develop our economies. That’s what China is doing, helping us, as friends, genuine friends.

Kaunda affirms China’s contribution to Africa