In the West Mao Zedong is treated as a mass murdering monster, just like Adolf Hitler, by many, if not most, journalists, scholars and pundits. They constantly amass new statistics that prove that Mao killed 10s of millions of people. Since he died and especially since the end of the Cold War, there has been a consistent campaign to discredit Mao. But if their analysis is right, why are a lot of the Chinese citizens, especially those who lived under Mao, remembering him fondly?
As an example consider these quotes from The Telegraph:
"Mao is a god in the East," said Chen Min, a 23-year-old nurse who works at a hospital in Changsha, the nearest major city.
"My grandmother was here in Shaoshan for the 100th anniversary, when they installed the giant bronze statue in the main square. It was winter, but she said the flowers along the road bloomed as the statue was driven by."
Even those old enough to remember the bad old days find it perfectly possible to continue to worship Mao, whose policies led directly to the death of tens of millions of Chinese.
"Mao liberated China. You cannot blame him for things like the Cultural Revolution or those other miserable times. He did not cause them himself," said Yang Biqiu, an 83-year-old visitor.
Indeed the depth of feeling stirred up by the anniversary is enough to concern the authorities, who have been monitoring internet chat rooms used by Maoists and tapping their mobile phones.
"All of our phones are being monitored," said Tang Jinbo, a 53-year-old former worker in a pharmaceutical firm who is one of a group of hundreds of Mao supporters that travelled to Shaoshan.
"In the city of Xi'an they are not allowed to celebrate the anniversary. Why should we be controlled? We only used government websites to post comments and meet," she complained.…
The article goes on to explain that Mao’s picture and name is everywhere. People name their kids after him. Restaurants have his picture on the wall and they often name dishes after him or his deeds, such as the Longest March. But as with almost all articles written in the West, there is that constant reminder that Western journalists consider him a mass murderer:
“Even those old enough to remember the bad old days find it perfectly possible to continue to worship Mao, whose policies led directly to the death of tens of millions of Chinese.”
But Western journalists have had to admit that Mao still has popularity in China. Another look at Mao is from The New York Times:
Yet 45 years ago, on May 16, 1966, this same man began the Cultural Revolution, an orgy of political violence that killed perhaps two million Chinese.
Mao’s preeminence in China is linked to his role in founding the People’s Republic in 1949. Yet his controversial political legacy, of which the Cultural Revolution is just one example, is growing more, not less, disputed, with time.
At stake is nothing less than long-stalled political reform, say some Chinese analysts and retired Communist Party officials.
“An honest, earnest, serious assessment of Mao based on facts” is “necessary,” Yawei Liu, director of the Carter Center’s China Program in Atlanta, said in an e-mail.
The following is repeated over and over by Western Journalists and pundits:
Mao’s legacy overshadows China to this day, so “without such a thorough verdict, it would be hard for China to launch meaningful political reform,” Mr. Liu said.
What can be noticed in this quote is the importance of “meaningful political reform.” What Western journalists, politicians and pundits want to see from China is a capitalist-style-free market and crass consumerism. Such capitalist values are the most important thing to Western journalists.
Freedom and democracy are a far secondary value to the Western journalist and pundits. They wonder how anyone can be happy without a life full of technological toys, cars, iphones and a deluge of crass consumerism. The US system only works when commercials are attacking people through TV, bill boards, computers and just about every type of media.
In the West, a political system needs to be integrated and controlled by pirates, profiteers and hucksters of all types.
What they can’t tolerate is fairness between the classes, a society that focuses more on the needs of ALL its citizens and the basics for all people, such as free medical care and education, as well as everyone having a house and job. In the capitalist West, nothing is more important than corporate profits. They can’t tolerate a leader who believes people are more important than profits. That is why they can’t tolerate Mao.
The Cultural Revolution is portrayed by journalists as unpopular. It May have been such. But the Western press NEVER EVER explains its purpose. It is always described as some kind of purge by Mao. The goal of advancing communism or creating culture to honor those classes at the bottom of Chinese society is never mentioned. There were some political struggles and that could resemble a purge, but the Cultural Revolution was way more than that.
As for people being killed, consider Abraham Lincoln. He presided over the bloodiest war in American history. He violated people’s rights. Yet we don’t go around calling him a mass murderer. His is considered a hero here in the US.
Mao’s politics, his writings, his philosophy is never discussed in any of these articles. That is always left out. There are organizations all over the world that follow Mao’s ideas and they rarely if ever, get any press.
This site is an example of the politics of Mao being a used as a major political force. After reading most of Mao’s works I have to wonder how other people can really believe they understand political power and its relations to politics. Some of the most successful guerrilla armies in the world have been influenced by Mao, especially both in South America and Asia. Some of us believe that Mao’s works are the most important political writings of the 20th century. And that has less to do with the simple leadership of the man.
Western journalists and pundits can sit around and complain all they want, but the Chinese realize the founder of their society was not a maniacal monster or simple mass murderer. Many people in other parts of Asia and elsewhere know it also.