The greatest mass murderer in world history
Posted by ampontan on Saturday, September 18, 2010
If you go carrying pictures of Chairman Mao
You ain’t gonna make it with anyone anyhow.
- Lennon/McCartney, Revolution
THE RESULT of historian Frank Dikötter’s woodshedding in Chinese historical archives is the book Mao’s Great Famine; The Story of China’s Most Devastating Catastrophe.
According to this review in The Independent:
At least 45 million people were worked, starved or beaten to death in China over these four years (1958-1962); the worldwide death toll of the Second World War was 55 million…it was a period when a third of all homes in China were destroyed to produce fertiliser and when the nation descended into famine and starvation…the members of the rural farming communities were seen by the Party merely as “digits”, or a faceless workforce. For those who committed any acts of disobedience, however minor, the punishments were huge.
State retribution for tiny thefts, such as stealing a potato, even by a child, would include being tied up and thrown into a pond; parents were forced to bury their children alive or were doused in excrement and urine, others were set alight, or had a nose or ear cut off….People were forced to work naked in the middle of winter; 80 per cent of all the villagers in one region of a quarter of a million Chinese were banned from the official canteen because they were too old or ill to be effective workers, so were deliberately starved to death.
Mr Dikötter…said…he felt he could not collude with the “conspiracy of silence” in what the Chinese rural community had suffered in recent history.
At the time, this program was known in China as The Great Leap Forward.
Note the expression, “conspiracy of silence”. The word hansei in Japanese, which is shared by the Chinese and Koreans (banseon, with the same Chinese characters), means serious self-reflection, searching one’s conscience, or reflecting on what one has done. It’s not easy for anyone.
For the same Chinese Communist Party that once glorified Chairman Mao, it’s far better to maintain the conspiracy of silence and to demonize the Japanese instead.