• Wed
  • Sep 17, 2014
  • Updated: 12:37pm
NewsChina
HISTORY

Mao Zedong set official quota for killing, says historian Frank Dikotter

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 23 February, 2014, 5:40am
UPDATED : Sunday, 23 February, 2014, 5:40am

During his campaign of terror to eliminate real or imagined opponents of his regime, Mao Zedong set an official killing quota of one per thousand members of the population, although he tolerated up to three per thousand, according to a historian who has published a new assessment of the era.

Frank Dikotter, a history professor at the University of Hong Kong, said that between 1947 and 1957, the Communist Party killed some five million civilians.

"Violence was not a by-product, it was a quota," said Dikotter (pictured), author of The Tragedy of Liberation: A History of the Chinese Revolution 1945-57.

Villagers were forced to denounce "landlords", mostly ordinary farmers. Some victims were buried alive, or tied up and dismembered. Even some children were killed as "little landlords".

Dikotter said Mao wanted people to denounce each other "so they had their hands bloodied in the pact sealed in blood between the party and the people".

"To tie everyone's fate to the regime so they are afraid of the return of the old regime. That's revolution. There is no going back."

The early communist regime resorted to violence and intimidation to silence the opposition to its rule, he said. Public executions were often staged in stadiums, watched by hundreds.

"From that moment, a lot of people had blood on their hands. It's difficult to see how, having gone through three decades of violence, from land reform, to the famine, to the Cultural Revolution, that none of this would have an effect," he said.

From the beginning of its rule until 1957, the Communist Party gradually silenced one group after another: the landlords, the entrepreneurs, the intellectuals and the so-called "anti-revolutionaries". By the end of that period, freedoms of speech, press, movement, association, belief and trade had been eliminated, Dikotter said.

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chaz_hen
"Stadium" is merely the choice of word for a large, semi enclosed arena that can accommodate hundreds, if not thousands for mass events. What could be a used as a "stadium", for example, is the (horse) race track in downtown Shanghai that is now the 人民公园. If you're focusing on a mere word and gleaning over the gist of the what happened, then you're truly a pathetic 50 cent apologist for mass murder of your own people. Assuming you're Chinese.
I think what really bothers you is that a G_wei_lo has taken the time and effort to do the research and compile a book on the excesses of a tyrant, who happens to be Chinese, and have his work substantiated many times over by Chinese in their accounts in recollections of the era.
Hurts doesn't it?
lucifer
Where does he claim he was smarter than Mao? Not that Mao was smart at all, maybe cunning, but I suppose you belittle him by stating he thinks he is smarter than Mao? What does building stadiums have to do with anything anyway? Most of them were junk and are not still in use in a large scale and I think people who had nothing to eat were probably not very good atheletes either. Most of what Mao changed, the Party brought back. For example, corrupt property tycoons, wealthy landlords, corrupt government officials, government official; syphoning off the state, prostitution, drug abuse, criminal gangs, exploitation of the poor....to name a few. Seriously, you failed to make any point whatsoever that is relevant. It really is difficult to win a pro Mao argument nowadays....
lib_prc

Sorry I made you mad, soooo mad! Mr. Mao sent his son to Korea to fight and die in an epic battle for China that changed China's fortune forever, against all odds...you don't call that a sacrifice? Guess you never learned this anywhere and your brain continues to be clogged by chemical detergent...for a father who sacrificed his dearest son for the country, whatever he did or said, we have to give him the benefit of the doubt and listen to him with all our hearts and with respect, not disgust...you obviously think very highly of yourself...and i have no intention to change that perception...
lib_prc

It really is difficult to win a pro Mao argument nowadays....??? You are joking mate! Can't be that difficult to defend a great philosopher who was arguably China's best poet in the 20th century...I am ready to defend him against anyone at any time anywhere...much to your chagrin...sorry!
whymak
30 MILLION MYTHS
I know for sure that 30 million is an outright lie perpetrated by Western media propaganda.
Even with the Mao's economic mismanagement, China's grain production per capita during 1958-1961 exceeded India’s. How many Indians died from famine?
Professor Sun Jing Xian had spent over 3 years on this problem. He came up with many census errors in hukou registrations during “massive” migrations from rural areas to the cities.
At least 30 million were involved during this migration. Out of which 11.62 M new registrants in cities were not offset by the same from their origin.
Fact checks showed 7.5 M deaths in rural areas in between 1953 and 1957 were counted short in old census reports. A detailed study of Shandong death reports alone showed it missed 1.52 M deaths.
In 1964 census, a 19.12 M (=11.62+7.5) correction was restated in the 1960 census.
Because of the severe decline in China’s GDP in 1960, 30 M were repatriated back to the villages. 14.82 M had their hukou canceled from the cities while the corresponding figure was not added to the rural registry.
TOTAL CHINESE DIED FROM MISCOUNT: 33.94 million!
Other scholars who studied the deaths from malnutrition during GLF placed the upper bound at 2.5 M, which unfortunately won’t satisfy the demonized instincts of SCMP readers.
An anecdote. My relatives experienced hardships. But none died from famine.
Feel free to persist in your myth of 30 million deaths as you wallow in the 6000-year old universe.
lib_hk

Herr Frank Dikotter obviously thinks he is smarter than Mr. Mao...I challenge him to name any "stadiums" in China between 1947 and 1957...Mr. Mao had to build China's stadiums one by one after liberation! No doubt Mr. Mao's revolution was a deluge too much for the herr to grasp...and he denies China's fortune was changed forever by Mr. Mao and his sacrifices...
 
 
 
 
 

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