(19) Exporting revolutions(3)



Not only did the CCP export revolutions to Africa and Latin America, but it also spent a great deal of effort to gain influence over Albania, another communist country. As early as when Nikita Khrushchev gave his secret speech marking the era of de-Stalinization, Albania was ideologically aligned with the CCP. Mao was greatly pleased, and thus he began the program of giving “aid” to Albania, regardless of the cost.

Xinhua News Agency reporter Wang Hongqi wrote, “From 1954 to 1978, China provided financial aid to the Party of Labour of Albania 75 times; the sum in the agreement was more than 10 billion Chinese yuan.”

At the time, the population of Albania was only around two million, which meant each person received the equivalent of four thousand Chinese yuan. On the other hand, the average annual income of a Chinese person at the time was no more than two hundred yuan. Within this period, China was also experiencing the Great Leap Forward and the resulting famine, as well as the economic collapse caused by Mao’s Cultural Revolution.

During the Great Famine, China used its extremely scarce hard currency foreign reserves to import food supplies. In 1962, Rez Millie, the Albanian ambassador to China, demanded aid in food supplies. Under the command of Party vice chairman Liu, the Chinese ship carrying wheat purchased from Canada and due for China changed course and unloaded the wheat at an Albanian port. [22]

Meanwhile, Albania took the CCP’s aid for granted and wasted it. The enormous amount of steel, machine equipment, and precision instruments sent from China were left exposed to the elements. Albanian officials were dismissive: “It’s of little importance. If it breaks or disappears, China will simply give us more.”

China helped Albania construct a textile factory, but Albania did not have cotton, so China had to use its foreign reserves to buy cotton for Albania. On one occasion, the vice president of Albania, Adil Çarçani, asked Di Biao, the Chinese ambassador in Albania at the time, to replace major equipment at a fertilizer factory, and demanded that the equipment be from Italy. China then bought machines from Italy and installed them for Albania.

Such so-called aid only instills greed and laziness in the recipient. In October 1974, Albania demanded a loan of five billion yuan from China. At the time, it was late in the Cultural Revolution, and China’s economy had collapsed almost completely. In the end, China still decided to lend one billion yuan. However, Albania was greatly unsatisfied and started an anti-Chinese movement in its country with slogans like “We shall never bow our heads in the face of economic pressure from a foreign country.” It also declined to support China with petroleum and asphalt.

……


The socialist system in Eastern Europe was entirely a product of the Soviet Union. After World War II, according to the division of power laid down at the Yalta Conference, Eastern Europe was handed over to the Soviet Union.

In 1956, after Khrushchev’s secret speech, Poland was the first country where protests broke out. After protests by factory workers, a crackdown, and apologies from the government, Poland elected Władysław Gomułka, who was hawkish on the Soviet Union and willing to stand up to Khrushchev.

An attempted revolution in Hungary then took place in October 1956. A group of students gathered and toppled the bronze statue of Stalin in Budapest. Soon after, many joined the protest and clashed with police. Police opened fire, and at least 100 protesters were killed.

The Soviet Union initially wished to cooperate with the newly established opposition party and named János Kádár as the first secretary of the Party Central Committee and Imre Nagy as the chairman of the Council of Ministers and prime minister. After Nagy came to power, he withdrew from the Warsaw Pact (a Soviet-led defense treaty) and further pushed for liberalization. The Soviet Union was unwilling to tolerate this, so they invaded, arrested Nagy, and executed him. [23]

The Hungarian incident was followed by Czechoslovakia’s Prague Spring in 1968. After the secret report by Khrushchev, regulations in Czechoslovakia began to loosen up. For several subsequent years, a relatively independent civil society was being formed. One of the representative figures was Václav Havel, who later became the president of what became the Czech Republic in 1993.

With this social backdrop, on January 5, 1968, the reformist Alexander Dubček took over as prime minister of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia. He strengthened reforms and promoted the slogan of “humane socialism.” Soon afterward, Dubček began rehabilitating, on a large scale, individuals who had been wrongly persecuted during the Stalin period. Dissidents were released, control over the media was loosened, academic freedom was encouraged, citizens could travel abroad freely, surveillance over religion was reduced, limited intra-party democracy was allowed, and so on.

Not only did the Soviet Union consider such reforms a betrayal of the principle of socialism, but also feared that other countries would follow. From March to August 1968, the leaders of the Soviet Union, including Leonid Brezhnev, held five conferences with Dubček, trying to pressure him into abandoning democratic reforms. Dubček rejected the entreaties. As a result, in August 1968, more than 6,300 Soviet tanks invaded Czechoslovakia. The Prague Spring that had lasted eight months was crushed. [24]

Judging from the Hungary incident and the crushing of the Prague Spring, we can see that socialism in Eastern Europe was forced upon the people there and violently maintained by the Soviet Union. When the Soviet Union let up slightly, socialism in Eastern Europe began falling away immediately.

The classic example is the fall of the Berlin Wall. On October 6, 1989, multiple cities in Eastern Germany were holding massive protests and marches, clashing with police. At the time, Mikhail Gorbachev was visiting Berlin. He told the general secretary of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany, Erich Honecker, that reform was the only way forward.

Immediately afterward, East Germany lifted travel restrictions to Hungary and Czechoslovakia. This allowed vast numbers of people to defect to Western Germany through Czechoslovakia, and the Berlin Wall could no longer stop the waves of fleeing citizens. On November 9, the East gave up on the partition. Tens of thousands of residents poured into West Berlin, and the wall was dismantled. The symbol of a communist iron curtain that had stood for decades disappeared into history. [25]

The year 1989, when the Berlin Wall fell, was full of turmoil. Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, and Eastern Germany all achieved liberty, freeing themselves of socialist rule. This was also the result of the Soviet Union giving up on its own policies of interference. In 1991, the Soviet Union fell, marking the end of the Cold War.

The Soviet Union’s interference in the Middle East, South Asia, Africa, and Latin America was not limited to the few examples described above. Similarly, in the past few decades, the Chinese Communist Party has aided 110 countries. One of the Party’s most important considerations for giving aid is the export of its ideology.

Thus, the purpose of this chapter is simply to show that the spreading of violence is a vital method that communism uses to expand internationally. The more population and land the specter controls, the easier it is to destroy humanity.

 

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