RENT REDUCTION AND PRODUCTION ARE
TWO IMPORTANT MATTERS FOR
THE DEFENCE OF THE LIBERATED AREAS[*]
November 7, 1945
1. The Kuomintang, aided by the United States, is mobilizing all its forces to attack our Liberated Areas. Country-wide civil war is already a fact. Our Party's present task is to mobilize all forces, take the stand of self-defence, smash the attacks of the Kuomintang, defend the Liberated Areas and strive for the realization of peace. To achieve this aim the following have become very urgent tasks. See to it that in the Liberated Areas the peasants generally get the benefits of rent reduction and that the workers and other labouring people benefit by appropriate wage increases and improved conditions; at the same time, see to it that the landlords can still make a living and that the industrial and commercial capitalists can still make profits. Unfold a large-scale production drive next year, increase the output of food and daily necessities, improve the people's livelihood, provide relief for victims of famine and for refugees and meet the needs of the army. Only when the two important matters of rent reduction and production are well handled can we overcome our difficulties, support the war and win victory.
2. As the scale of the war is now very large, many leading comrades are in command at the front and cannot divert their attention to rent reduction and production. Hence there must be division of labour. Those leading comrades who remain in the rear areas, in addition to doing a great deal of work in direct support of the front, must not miss the opportune time for organizing these two important tasks of rent reduction and production. In the next few months of the winter and spring, they must launch large-scale rent reduction campaigns and carry out rent reduction universally in all the Liberated Areas, and particularly in the vast newly liberated areas, so as to arouse
the revolutionary fervour of the great majority of the peasant masses. Meanwhile they must see to it that there is a new development of agricultural and industrial production in all the Liberated Areas in 1946. Do not neglect rent reduction and production because of the new large-scale war; on the contrary, it is precisely in order to defeat the Kuomintang offensive that rent reduction and production must be stepped up.
3. Rent reduction must be the result of mass struggle, not a favour bestowed by the government. On this depends the success or failure of rent reduction. In the struggle for rent reduction, excesses can hardly be avoided; as long as it is really a conscious struggle of the broad masses, any excesses that have occurred can be corrected afterwards. Only then can we persuade the masses and enable them to understand that it is in the interest of the peasants and the people as a whole to allow the landlords to make a living so that they will not help the Kuomintang. The present policy of our Party is still to reduce rents, not to confiscate land. During and following rent reduction we must help the great majority of the peasants to organize themselves into peasant associations.
4. The key to victory in the production drive is to organize the great majority of the producers into mutual-aid production groups. An indispensable measure is to provide government credits for agriculture and industry. It is also very important to do farm work in the right season and reduce loss of working time. At present we must mobilize civilian manpower to support the war; on the other hand, we must so far as possible not miss any season for farming; hence we should study methods of adjustments. Army units, government organs and schools should continue to take part in production to an appropriate extent, provided it does not interfere with the war, with work and with study. Only thus can they better their livelihood and lighten the burden on the people.
5. We already hold some large and many medium cities. It has become an important task for our Party to take control of the economy of these cities and to develop their industry, commerce and finance. For this purpose, it is very necessary to use all the qualified persons available and persuade Party members to co-operate with them and learn technique and methods of management from them.
* This inner-Party directive was drafted by Comrade Mao Tse-tung for the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
6. Tell all Party members to stand firmly together with the people, to have concern for their economic difficulties and to regard the carrying out of the two important tasks of rent reduction and production as the key to helping the people overcome their difficulties; by so doing, we shall win the heartfelt support of the people and be able to defeat attacks by any reactionaries. Everything must still be considered from the standpoint of a long-term effort, manpower and material resources must be used sparingly, everything must be planned on a long-term basis; thus we will be sure to win victory.