BEIJING (AA) – Five decades after the launch of Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution, Chinese state-run media insisted that the “decade-long internal chaos” cannot be repeated.
“The decade of calamity caused severe damage, leaving permanent pain for many Chinese,” a commentary in the Chinese Communist Party’s Global Times newspaper said Tuesday.
“Entirely denying the values of the Cultural Revolution will help Chinese society remain vigilant against the danger of all kinds of disorder.”
Monday marked the 50th anniversary of when Mao -- then Chairman of the Communist Party of China -- set in motion a movement to preserve "true" Communist ideology in the country by purging traditional elements and remnants of capitalism.
The decade-long movement saw the re-imposition of Maoist -- Marxist/Leninist -- thought as the dominant ideology.
During the purges of the period, authorities fell from their posts, many urban youth were transferred to rural regions as a form of reeducation, and traditional and religious monuments were destroyed.
Hundreds of thousands of people were left dead, with some historians estimating figures of around 1.5 million, as the political turmoil resulted in widespread detentions and battles between political rivals.
Five years after the movement ended with Mao’s death in 1976, the Communist Party of China adopted an official resolution describing the movement as a "serious catastrophe to the party, the country and people of different races”.
“Over the past few years, many developing countries have experienced civil strife, but not China. A significant reason is that the lessons the Cultural Revolution taught us has given the nation a certain immunity,” underlined Tuesday’s commentary. “Nobody fears turmoil, and desires stability more than us.”