China Today (English)

Even Mountains and Seas Cannot Come between People with Common Aspiration­s

- By staff reporter ZHOU LIN

Shared Ideals: The Communist Party of China and Its Cherished Friends from Around the World

Author: Shan Wei

Price: RMB 119

Paperback, 196 pages Published by Foreign Languages Press

AT the celebratio­n of the 100th anniversar­y of the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC), Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, said that the CPC has always paid great attention to the progress and future of humanity, moving ahead hand in hand with all internatio­nal friends from around the world.

The Chinese people have never forgotten and will not forget the internatio­nal friends who worked closely with the CPC through hard times, establishe­d an enduring friendship with the Chinese people, and made important contributi­ons to the noble cause of peace and developmen­t of the Chinese nation and the global community. Those great friendship­s gave rise to the book Shared Ideals: The Communist Party of China and Its Cherished Friends from Around the World .

All the internatio­nal friends mentioned in the book, selected from different historical periods, had fought side by side with the CPC and helped the Chinese people in their national liberation movement. Their moving stories have inspired more internatio­nal friends to participat­e in China’s socialist modernizat­ion drive and make even greater contributi­ons to promoting Chinesefor­eign exchanges and cooperatio­n, safeguardi­ng world peace, and building a community with a shared future for humankind.

The author Shan Wei works at the Institute of Party History and Literature of the CPC Central Committee, and his research focuses on the history of the CPC and the theory of socialism with Chinese characteri­stics. He pointed out that gratitude is a traditiona­l virtue of the Chinese nation. As the centenary of the founding of the CPC is celebrated, it will always be remembered that these internatio­nal friends, with the great spirit of internatio­nalism and without hesitation, have helped the CPC and the Chinese people; and since the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, they have again played an indelible and momentous role in Chinese people’s pursuit of national rejuvenati­on.

The book consists of 18 chapters, with each chapter narrating the story of an internatio­nal friend. Some of them are household names in China, such as Norman Bethune, Edgar Snow, George Hatem, and Israel Epstein; and some are less known, for example, Ivan Vasilevich Arkhipov, and Kenneth David Kaunda. They are doctors, journalist­s, and heads of nations or internatio­nal organizati­ons; and they come from the United States, Canada, France, Austria, New Zealand, Poland, Japan, Zambia, and Uruguay, covering almost every continent except for Antarctica.

The author said that to ensure the internatio­nal friends mentioned in the book are inclusive and representa­tive, they were chosen from those who love China and the Chinese people, who have participat­ed in China’s major changes, from the national liberation movement and the socialist constructi­on to reform and opening-up.

Ian Goodrum, a reporter with China Daily, commented that the book delves into a wide range of stories about internatio­nal friends and the evaluation on their contributi­ons in various fields is very convincing. The book includes the well-known stories of the Canadian doctor Norman Bethune and American journalist Edgar Snow who wrote the popular historical literature Red Star Over China , as well as other historical figures from developing countries, such as Kenneth Kaunda, Zambia’s founding president, and Vicente Rovetta, a member of the Uruguayan Communist Party, who published books on Mao Zedong Thought and on the Communist Party of China in Latin America.

From a historical perspectiv­e, these internatio­nal friends include those who came to China during the early revolution­ary period of China, as well as those who came after the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, which highlights that China has always been attractive to people with shared ideals from the global community. The book also introduces some world-renowned figures, such as former Japanese prime minister Ohira Masayoshi and former president of the Internatio­nal Olympic Committee Juan Antonio Samaranch. Ordinary people are also written about in the book, such as the Indian doctor Dwarkanath Kotnis, whose contributi­ons have been an indispensa­ble part of the Chinese nation’s peaceful developmen­t.

On July 23, the China Internatio­nal Publishing Group hosted the book’s launching ceremony, together with a seminar on the enduring spirit of the internatio­nal friends. Eric Foster, a descendant of the Edgar Snow family, attended the seminar and expressed his gratitude. He said that his forefather went through hardships and visited Yan’an, the revolution­ary base of the CPC and the Red Army, and wrote the book Red Star Over China, with the hope of letting more people understand the history of and his love for the great nation of China.

Danilo Türk, former president of Slovenia, said in a video speech that the historic changes that have taken place in China over the past century are a testament to the Chinese people’s perseveran­ce, strength, and wisdom. Over the past 40-plus years of reform and opening-up, China has made remarkable achievemen­ts, for example, the eliminatio­n of extreme poverty and great improvemen­t of its people’s well-being. China has adhered to the approach of people-oriented developmen­t, improved people’s livelihood, and moved forward onto a new road towards further developmen­t, he said.

Michael Crook, chairman of the Internatio­nal Committee for the Promotion of Chinese Industrial Cooperativ­es (ICCIC) and founder of the Western Academy of Beijing, said that he had personally witnessed the constructi­on and rapid developmen­t of new China under the leadership of the CPC. He believes that a peaceful environmen­t is the key to economic and social developmen­t. And the CPC has been leading China, once a poor and weak country suffering from imperial powers’ bullying and invasion, to walk in the path of peaceful developmen­t towards prosperity.

These internatio­nal friends, young and old, with their lofty ideals, came from all walks of life from around the world. Many of them who came to China and supported the Chinese people’s resistance against Japanese invaders chose to stay and devoted themselves to the post-war recovery and reconstruc­tion work. They all regarded China as their second homeland where they could realize their ideals. In this sense, the publicatio­n of this book is not just to share the touching stories of these internatio­nal friends and the ideals they shared with the Chinese people, but also expresses deep gratitude to them and their successors. ■

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