Setting the Record Straight on the Accomplishments of the CPC
The new order of global governance would be based on the true equality of nations, in which all countries have a say, and in which no nation is subject to the dictates of another or to a limited group of countries.
The publication of “The CPC: Its Mission and Contributions” by China’s ruling party the Communist Party of China (CPC) was an important intervention into an international discussion in which all types of false narratives have been circulated by those in the West who wish to discredit the CPC in the eyes of the world, and thereby hamper China’s rapid economic and social development.
It is an important document since even many of those who are favorably disposed toward China’s policies today are not acquainted with the history of China or the history of the CPC. People are also not acquainted with China’s specific style of democracy, both within the Party and within the nation as a whole. As a result, people who are not well-versed in the realities of China are easily influenced by the continual media barrage about the so-called Xinjiang “forced labor” and “human rights violations.”
The document is important in explaining some aspects of China’s history during the last century as well as the role that the CPC has played in bringing the country out of a condition of poverty and oppression to a position in which it now plays a major role in global affairs. It also gives people a clearer sense of China’s intentions for the future.
The history of the CPC is by no means an easy one. The CPC was launched in 1921 during an era of political chaos for China, and there was only a handful of people who gathered in Shanghai to witness its founding. That group of individuals, along with their like-minded compatriots around the country, committed themselves to improving the life conditions of the Chinese people after decades of colonial oppression and to rejuvenating the Chinese nation. This has remained the essential objective of the CPC throughout its history. When Japan began to encroach on Chinese territory in 1931, the CPC took the lead in fighting against the invasion, and later took the initiative to form an alliance with the Kuomingtang government to jointly resist Japan’s aggression.
In the Chinese People’s War of Liberation that closely followed the war against Japanese invaders, the forces led by the CPC had won the overwhelming support of the Chinese people, and secured a sweeping victory. Later they succeeded in setting up a functioning government throughout the nation, to the surprise of many Western observers who had remained in China after the war.
In doing this, they also tapped the energy of people from other political parties who were intent on helping the CPC rebuild the nation. For this purpose, the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference came into being to gather advice from people outside the Party ranks. And this structure continues to this day, playing a major role in the formulation of policy.
The CPC also sets high standards for its members. This was a key element during the early years after its founding and the subsequent war years when joining the Communist Party was risky business and required a great deal of commitment to the national cause and done at the risk of losing one’s own life. After the CPC took power, these principles remained. To preventing Party members from corruption and seeking improper personal benefits, the CPC had instituted a system of oversight to detect any signs of corruption in the leadership. These regulations have also become more rigorous since the Party’s 18th national congress.
In addition, the CPC-led governance is based on something like a meritocracy, which allows those who exhibit intellectual and moral qualities of a real “servant of the people” to rise to higher posts, making sure that recruitment to leadership is awarded to those who have shown the greatest commitment to the people’s welfare. The broad practice of intra-Party democracy also ensures that Party members can play a role in exposing any elements of corruption in those in leading positions.
The report is also brutally honest in noting that mistakes have been made during the course of the Party’s history – and what political party in the world cannot admit the same? With the launch of the Cold War in the mid-20th century, China was effectively boycotted by the U.S., and particularly after its split with former Soviet Union, China had to find its own way and conduct experiments on its own, some of which ended in catastrophe, like the Great Leap Forward and the “cultural revolution.” But the CPC succeeded in overcoming and correcting these mistakes and has made sure they will never be repeated.
As a result of its reform and opening-up, China has been able to expand its contact with the rest of the world and begun to play a more important role in global economy. At the same time, China is also able to introduce key elements of science and technology into different sectors of its economy, which were off-limits to them under Cold War restrictions. Science and technology have since become the main driving force of the Chinese economy.
Nevertheless, while assuming the role of a major player in the world with increasing economic strength, China has rejected the usual vying for “hegemony” which had previously been the characteristic of the rise of new powers on the world stage. This has to do with the guiding ideology of the CPC and with the traditional norms of Confucian culture, which today still finds its way to exert influence on the country’s policy-making.
We have seen, for instance, the Confucian principle of “harmony” expressed in the development of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). China not only sells its products to countries along the Belt and Road, but transmits its technology and its know-how, teaching those developing countries “how to fish.” The BRI has effectively created a new paradigm for nations in Asia, Africa, and Latin America who were previously ensconced in a vicious “debt trap” entailed by a trade system dominated by Western developed countries. The BRI has given hope where there once was only despair. And China’s poverty alleviation program has provided a model for them to follow.
The CPC has also played a significant role in promoting the development of the Third World, a term coined by the founding chairman of new China Mao Zedong for developing countries. Even with China’s rapid development, the CPC has retained a keen sense of solidarity with those countries still immersed in poverty. China’s quick response during the COVID-19 crisis in assuring that developing countries, in particular, receive the vaccine, is characteristic of that commitment. In its striving for a new system of global governance, China is intent that the developing countries also receive their due representation. The new order of global governance would be based on the true equality of nations, in which all countries have a say, and in which no nation is subject to the dictates of another or to a limited group of countries. This was the principle on which the United Nations was based and is the system which China, under the CPC’s leadership, hopes to build upon in its pursuit of building a community with a shared future for humankind.