Soviet Revolution honored
Workshop marks 100th anniversary of Bolshevik triumph
The upcoming 100th anniversary of the October Revolution has prompted the Communist Party of China (CPC) to reflect on the collapse of the Soviet Union and triggered a surge of “red tours” to Russia.
The Bolshevik-led revolution in 1917 was instrumental in the creation of the former Soviet Union.
An “October Revolution and Socialism with Chinese Characteristics” workshop was held in Beijing on Tuesday. Liu Qibao, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China’s Central Committee and head of the Party’s Publicity Department, delivered a speech, the People’s Daily reported on Wednesday.
“The failure of the Soviet Union’s socialist path has multiple reasons including conservativeness and rigidity, but the most fundamental reason is the deviation from the path of Marxism-Leninism and the socialist path started by the October Revolution,” Liu said at the workshop.
“The Soviet Union’s failure in the economy was caused by its conservative political system which refused to reform and distributed too many resources to the military. When problems could not be hidden in the 1980s, it started to reform without adhering to the Party’s principles. But it was too late and this directly caused the collapse. This is our view on the failure of the Soviet Union since Deng Xiaoping’s era,” said Su Wei, a professor at the Chongqing Municipal Party Committee’s Party School.
Liu said 100 years ago China was a weak, poor, easily bullied and invaded country. “But now, we have never been so close to the goal of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation and we have more confidence and capability than at any stage in our history to achieve this goal.”
The root cause of this huge change was “we have chosen the path started by the October Revolution and we combined the fundamentals of Marxism-Leninism and
the reality of our country’s revolution, construction and development. That’s why we discovered a path suitable for our national conditions that lead us to the great rejuvenation,” Liu said.
Due to the special historical connection between China and Russia, the two countries’ tourism authorities are planning and preparing “redthemed” tours to meet the demands of Chinese tourists.
A tourism exchange program between China and Russia was held in Central China’s Hunan Province at Shaoshan, the hometown of Mao Zedong, the Xinhua News Agency reported on September 21.
In St. Petersburg, known as Petrograd from 1914 to 1924, the local government touts products associated with the Soviet Union to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution, including itineraries with the themes “Chinese Comrades in Red Petrograd” and the “February Revolution in Petrograd.”
The Great October Socialist Revolution, which falls on November 7, appears in many Chinese history textbooks. However, not many Chinese teenagers fully understand the October Revolution or the history of the former Soviet Union.
“Most of us were born after the 1990s, and so when we started to learn history about other countries, the Soviet Union had already collapsed, making this part of history very strange and distant from us,” said an undergraduate student surnamed Li, 22, from the Beijing-based Renmin University of China.
Another student surnamed Liu, 24, from Tsinghua University, told the Global Times that “Although the October Revolution enlightened the founding fathers of the CPC, the CPC didn’t follow the Russians’ methodology. Mao’s revolution was very different from Lenin’s, so I think the Nanchang Uprising and the Long March are more important to us.”
“Although the October Revolution started in Russia, it exerted an impact upon all human civilization. China offers the only hope of making the journey started by the October Revolution shine again and so prove the correctness of that path. So for China, the October Revolution also needs to be commemorated,” Su said.
A worker washes a statue of the founder of the Soviet Union Vladimir Lenin at Moscow Square in Saint Petersburg on Thursday. This year Russia will mark the 100th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution also known as the October Revolution.