<HTML><HEAD> <META name=GENERATOR content="MSHTML 8.00.6001.19019"></HEAD> <BODY> <H1 class="cN-headingPage prepend-5 span-11 last">Let's fly the red flag again, says general </H1> <DIV class="push-0 span-11 last"><!-- cT-storyDetails --> <DIV class="cT-storyDetails cfix"> <H5>John Garnaut </H5><CITE>May 23, 2011</CITE> <UL></UL></DIV> <DIV id=googleAds class="ad adSpot-textBox"></DIV><BOD> <DIV class=articleBody><!-- cT-imageLandscape --> <DIV class=cT-imageLandscape><IMG alt="The good old days ... Mao Zedong shakes hands while the young Liu Yuan (immediately right of Mao) looks on, with his parents and sisters." src="ctsipad-art-wide-pg10-mao-420x0.jpg"> <P>The good old days ... Mao Zedong shakes hands while the young Liu Yuan (immediately right of Mao) looks on, with his parents and sisters. </P></DIV> <P>BEIJING: A Chinese general has issued a clarion call for the true heirs of the communist revolution to rediscover their fighting spirit and reinvent a rationale for their existence. ''No-surrender, Communist Party members!'' writes General Liu Yuan. ''Let's start again.''</P> <P>Pointedly, General Liu distinguishes ''no-surrender'' cadres from unnamed top leaders who have sold out to foreign interests. ''Actually, the party has been repeatedly betrayed by general secretaries, both in and outside the country, recently and in the past,'' Liu writes.</P> <P>Chinese leaders since 1989 have successfully presented a disciplined and united public face, in the knowledge that airing their differences could be collectively fatal. General Liu, the political commissar of the general logistics department and the son of a one-time anointed successor to Chairman Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, jokingly acknowledged that his essay breaks all the rules.</P> <P>''It's like playing broadswords in front of Guan Gong,'' he writes, referring to a Han Dynasty warrior-hero. ''Death is certain, it's like self-mutilation, and even deserved.''</P> <P>In his essay, General Liu inverts a traditional Chinese formulation that military affairs are subordinate to civilian culture.</P> <P>''Military culture is the oldest and most important wisdom of humanity,'' he writes. ''Without war, where would grand unity come from? Without force, how could fusion of the nation, the race, the culture, the south and the north be achieved?''</P> <P>The essay also opens a window into the institutional, ideological and personal struggles that are intensifying before next year's leadership transition.</P> <P>He says the Communist Party needs to reform to save China and itself.</P> <P>The essay is the preface to a collection of political essays, <EM>Changing Our View of Culture and History</EM>, by a left-leaning intellectual called Zhang Musheng, whose father was also a senior cadre.</P> <P>General Liu backs Mr Zhang's call to save the party by turning the ideological clock back by more than 60 years.''Why don't we proudly raise high the New Democracy socialist theory which is indigenous, much-tested, initiated by party member Mao Zedong and practiced by Liu Shaoqi?''</P> <P>Mr Zhang's subsequent media interviews describe a country that has been led by weak and bloodless leaders into a political and societal crisis.</P> <P>''There is one year until the succession and we are playing pass-the-parcel with a time bomb,'' Mr Zhang told an interviewer last week. ''The next generation of leaders will not allow this situation to continue.''</P> <P>General Liu was purged with his family during the Cultural Revolution and then left Beijing to begin his career as a grassroots official in the countryside in the early 1980s.</P> <P>General Liu and Mr Zhang made a call for open debate in China within the confines of one-party rule.</P> <P>Mr Zhang's book was banned on the mainland until its publication by a company affiliated with the Academy of Military Science, where General Liu used to be the political commissar.</P> <P>One general who attended the book launch, Luo Yuan, has suggested punishing the United States by dumping US bonds, while another, Major-General Zhu Chenghu, has called for China to scrap its ''no first strike'' nuclear weapons policy.</P> <P>The book launch was also attended by arguably China's most important liberal editors, Wu Si from the political and history magazine <EM>Yanhuang Chunqiu</EM>, and Hu Shuli from Caixin Media.</P></DIV></BOD></DIV></BODY></HTML>