Could China’s President Get Purged? Happy 50th Anniversary, Cultural Revolution!

On this episode of China Uncensored: Oh oh! It’s a party! A Communist Party! Hi, welcome to China Uncensored, I’m your host Chris Chappell. Today is the 50th anniversary of China’s Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. Just how great was it? Well, it was such a disaster that even the state-run Global Times called it, “painful,” “chaotic,” and “a devastating decade of political turmoil.” Even the Communist Party itself admits that the Great Helmsman Mao Zedong’s Cultural
Revolution was “a serious mistake,” and that Mao was “70 percent right and 30 percent
wrong.” Part of that 30 percent wrong is presumably killing two million people during
that time. Mao began the Cultural Revolution in May 1966 to purge his enemies and restore ideological
purity to the Communist Party. The revolution raged out of control, only coming to an end because Mao died in
1976. Not only was it a period of good old fashioned
book burning, temple smashing, and people yelling— but also pure political chaos. You could be a model member of the Communist
Party one day, and the next—purged— only to later find yourself back on top. In fact, that’s what happened to Mao’s eventual successor, Deng Xiaoping. Twice. The human cost of the Cultural Revolution
was immense. Groups of violent young people known as the
Red Guards denounced, beat, and even killed people who were branded “counter-revolutionaries.” In some areas the political frenzy was so
insane that people literally ate these so-called
enemies. People were encouraged to report their neighbors, friends, even family members. In 1970, 16-year-old Zhang Hongbing heard his mother criticize Mao for starting
the Cultural Revolution. He reported her to the police and recommended
that she should be shot. She was beaten and executed. Now Zhang is trying to tell his story in hopes that the Cultural Revolution will
never happen again. It’s not so easy, because the Communist Party, while acknowledging that the Cultural Revolution
was a mistake, doesn’t really want people talking about what
happened. So it was a little surprising to suddenly
see this: A massive “patriotic” concert featuring songs and imagery from the Cultural
Revolution. Complete with slogans like “People of the world unite and defeat the
American invaders and their running dogs.” Which kind of raises the question: Who’s idea was this concert? Amazingly, no one really seems to know. The performance was put on by the patriotic
girl band 56 Flowers and the China National Opera and Dance Drama
Theatre. According to the South China Morning Post, the second group said, “It had been deceived by its partner, which claimed to be from an office under the
Party’s Central Publicity ­Department.” That would be “the Central Propaganda Department
Office for the Promotion of Socialist Core Values,” which apparently does not exist. State-run Global Times said, “We do not believe the show has any official
backing.” But it was held in the Great Hall of the People. That would be like saying a concert at the
US Capitol building had no official backing. Plus, several officials from the Central Propaganda Department were in the
audience. And state-run media published articles about
the concert. Until they were deleted. But here’s a hint at what’s behind it: Giant picture of Mao Zedong, giant picture of Xi Jinping. Giant picture of Mao Zedong, giant picture of Xi Jinping. Hmm, if I didn’t know any better, I’d say someone is trying to make a comparison. And for Xi Jinping, that’s a dangerous comparison for people
to make. Ever since Mao, the Party has been terrified of the thrall
of a personality cult. Remember the last guy that tried to start
one? Bo Xilai. He’s now in jail for life. And yet it seems like the same kind of cult is being built up around Xi Jinping. From memorabilia, to songs and dance, to totally impromptu praise from foreign students
put out by Chinese media. “A very humble leader.” “Powerful Chinese leader.” “A wise and resolute president.” “Handsome, yah!” So this concert can’t actually be good for
Xi, right? Well, that may be the point. The day after the Cultural Revolution concert, Xi just so happened to give a speech warning about “cabals and cliques” within the
Communist Party. He said, “There are careerists and conspirators existing in our Party and undermining the
Party’s governance.” And by governance he most likely means himself. Since Xi stepped onto the stage in 2012, there’s been a constant power struggle between
Xi and the people who used to hold the reins
within the Communist Party: a faction—or “cabal”, if you will— affiliated with former Chinese leader Jiang
Zemin. And it just so happens that many of the most
powerful members of Jiang’s old guard have been purged in Xi’s
so-called anti-corruption campaign. But hey, as Xi said, the “fight against corruption is…not a
‘House of Cards’ power struggle.” So I was right! Xi Jinping does watch House of Cards. Anyway, Xi has been amassing power and titles. He just appointed himself as China’s first
ever Commander-in-Chief. So is he the next Mao? Well, as Roderick MacFarquhar, an expert in elite Communist Party politics,
put it, “Chairman Mao never needed titles. Everyone knew who was in charge.” So was this Cultural Revolution concert just a way for Xi’s rivals to compare him
to Mao, so they could criticize him and take him down? Might not be as far fetched as it sounds. Liu Yunshan—the official in charge of China’s
propaganda— is one of Xi Jinping’s big rivals. So, there’s a mysterious concert at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. It appears to have been approved in some way by the Propaganda Department. And it could make Xi Jinping look like a dangerous
leader of a personality cult on the anniversary of
the Cultural Revolution. Then, outrage over the concert, people blame a fake propaganda agency, censorship ensues. Evidence of a power struggle? Or inept political blundering? Leave your comments below. And if you liked this episode, support China Uncensored on Patreon. Oh, and if you’re interested in learning more
about the Cultural Revolution, a China Uncensored fan is tweeting about it
here. Once again I’m Chris Chappell. See you next time.

About the author


  1. I think my videos are banned there because I talk about commies so much, but oh well.

    I can't believe that they're noticing that that Tiammen Square stuff was bad too.

  2. everybody waving a flag should be HUMANIZED in special camps where poeple love and respect each other so they will stop beeing soulless programmed little sheeple serving the faschist inhuman system no matter what it is calling itself…

  3. cris. when you say she and the he. i almost piss miy self. all i can think of is china run buy a trancvestite. he he he. keep up the good work my man/lady??? he he

  4. Chris can you recommend a good book on the Cultural Revolution? I enjoy your program want to become a sponsor

  5. Double-face communists: They claim they want to have a clean government while plotting to knife their fellow communists in the back. I grew up in China and as a kid was taught all the great things the party stood for. Now I know the communists are just as rotten as anybody else – power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely. The wicked Japanese invaders killed millions of Chinese in the Second World War but the communists also killed millions. So who is worse?

  6. Chris, I think you will find your show becoming more relevant to the American people every day. Cannot wait to what you have to say about the latest threat China issued to the United States over the South China Sea.

  7. The Chinese president needs to appoint himself as Commander-in-Chief. Meanwhile the United States' president is automatically the Commander-in-Chief.

  8. The Cultural Revolution was China's greatest moment! Comrade Xi is the world's greatest leader since Comrade Mao. The careerists and conspirators who are undermining the Party's governance deserve to be tortured, executed and eaten!

  9. How could a "fake organization" not exist within the PRC? I mean the CCP do as they wish so how can anything they say relating to the organizations, departments and so on that the government runs be "fake"?

  10. Communism killed 100,000,000 people.
    Venezuela is a failed state now.
    China is oppressive.
    Why does it exist in 2016? Oh yeah "intellectuals".

  11. Doubt it. Most Chinese would rather be stronger and richer then America, rather then have liberties. It's like a team sport

  12. XI will be humiliated and removed from power. He will be seen as dangerous for China due to his bellicose stance with the west which could result in an all out war and the decimation of the Chinese race.

  13. The Communist Chinese are coming for you…..they are in your phone and TV and home appliances and light bulbs and …….

  14. If Xi wants to reform the party, he has to get rid of all these corrupted and crazy party officials used to work for Jiang Zemin….And they don't like it…we will see what happens

  15. One of the more insightful looks at Chinese politics I have seen. All of the subtle cues they use to fling about messages and promote allegiances.

  16. 56 Flowers…. Puahahahahaha! You mean China's poor attempt to once again copy from the two culture they allegedly hate so much: American and Japanese cultures. AKB 48 is better anyway. They are hotter and can actually sing and dance.

  17. So during that time if the kids cannot get what they want , they will report their parents to the police and recommend for them to be shot . XD

  18. The cultural revolution in China was a huge disaster for everyone. Everyone went out and destroyed historical artifacts and millions of people were either killed or starved to death by Mao Zedong. Such a terrible turn of past events, and now there is a concert honoring chairman Mao, it's strange.

  19. That concert in The Great Hall of People was a pure political scheme to put a scandal on Xi. Here's why: All government departments that related to propaganda are controlled by Jiang, who was the former president of China and the actual controller of the country when Hu Jintao and When Jiabao were in office. Xi and Jiang's history got way back, and there were constant conflicts between those 2 groups. (You can see them from some policies and their news reports)

  20. China is a giant fucking kennel of dogs. When I get my throne back, China and NORK will be the first to go, maybe Hanoi, too.

  21. CHRIS, when you talk about internal political intrigue in China, I realize I have no dog in that fight. Let the Communist Party rip itself to shreds in a hunger-games competition for all I care. 😀

  22. 0:47 2 million? That's just how many he starved to death when he took control of all rice production. Estimates of how many Chinese he killed go as high as 60 million. He was worse than Stalin and Hitler combined in the number of people whose deaths he was directly responsible for.

  23. I think the Communists could still purge ALL capitalism from their country. They are completely dishonest. Who would dare to say following Mao's example was wrong?
    Everyone who has benefited from the economic policies could just lose everything. They could wind up working in the fields.
    I'm not kidding. The government is STILL Communist.
    Do their latest foreign policy moves look like reasoned, moral policy? Or does it look like it always did?
    Like it always did.

  24. Mao was just a horrible dictator like Stalin and Hitler. Actually I'd say he's worse. He built a cult of insanity.

    Then again, current China is no better, their 50 centers are all over China Uncensored trying to discredit the channel in any way possible. Little do they know, we can spot these worthless hacks a mile away. What's funny is they say this channel is CIA funded, without giving any credible evidence. They just expect us to believe the crap they spew on about. I think I'll trust this channel over the retarded CCP.

  25. I was dissappointed when Xi took power, i kind of hoped the next leader after Wen, and Hu would be What or Where

  26. Here's the reality that the orthodox communists are struggling with: the capitalist revolution of the last 30 years has produced far, far more in improvement in Chinese life than the 35 years of maoism that preceded it. Reconciling the indoctrinations of youth with the realities of the actual world has always been difficult for the ideologically rigid. Although Mao tried (without success) to wipe out Confucianism, it survives as strong as ever. It, far more than communism, is the unifying philosophy of China.. In îts deeply practical component, Chinese will not undo what has so improved their lives.Doctrinaire commies see their world slipping away, so they authorize retro videos romanticizing an awful episode.Probably made some commies feel nostalgic for the good old days,but won't change the country back into a maoist state.

  27. Power struggle or inept political blundering? On this one I think I would go with a little bit from column A and a little bit from column B.

  28. Do you have a video about "3 years natural disaster". Not sure what's it official translation but I translate it literally.

  29. Collective amnesia. They still hang the bastard's portrait in Tiananmen and display his pickled corpse close by.

  30. Could China's president be purged?  Lets start calling him by what he really is.  He is the Emperor in all but name.  And like all Emperors, he has to watch his back very carefully lest he start growing knife hilts from his rib cage.  Sooner or later, unless they die first, they all fall and are replaced by some other fanatic who thinks he can beat the odds.

  31. Xi came of age during the cultural revolution, which is why his reign more and more bears the marks of that period now.

  32. This guy Chris Chappell is a loser, graduate of a no name university and hired by Falungong cult to badmouth China. He's got no other job experiences and probably can't get a proper job other than working for a Chinese cult with self claimed reincarnated "Buddha" as the boss.

  33. I have a question, who thinks China really makes "mistakes" blatantly? They are as cold and calculating as the Borgia family of old Italy. Believe me, they can be as complicated as a Gordian knot. I could see something like this being an attempt at political assassination. There is nothing new about a praise campaign that actually is a smear campaign but let us face a couple of facts here. One is the control over the media the government has and propaganda like this is status quo and more than likely viewed in China as standard entertainment fair. the second one is China is great at painting a happy face on everything including massive disasters. Got a crying child? Slap on a happy face mask. Dead bodies everywhere after a damn break? Make a joke about it and blame the victims for the disaster. Bejing air is so polluted you need a knife just to take a walk to cut through the haze but WTF, blame the Americans since no matter what rule two is NEVER MAKE CHINA LOOK BAD EVEN IF CHINA DOES FUCK UP. Hmmmmmm, cultural genocide not only of Buddhists but of Tibetans as well… but let us not forget their aggressive stance of the oceans and how they are actually trying to impose some kind of claim on the Philippines by taking their waters. And why does China need a 5 million man army? People's Liberation Army must think their job is to liberate everyone from their homes and livelihoods all for the perpetuation of the Communist party and its ideals.

    Funny how China went from "We poor developing nation, you stop picking on us," to "This is now mine and screw you guys. Got something to say to me? Look at how big my army is! We like Germany wanted to be but not stupid like Hitler. Go play with yourself because we have to get ready for big fight with the Philippines and maybe India. We hate India. They so stupid and smelly! You round eyes also stupid and smelly! You smell like hamburger. HA HA, We buy your property with our made up money! STUPID ROUND EYES!" There is that and also Siergio Arogonnes Spy vs. Spy.

  34. I would have liked to see what would have happened if a country actually was communist. (no USSR and other countries where communism is just a façade don't count)

  35. China plunges into Civil War in this country comes Crashing Down all those factories and money are going to be so I'm heading back to the US that's if Hillary is elected then she may actual kill what's left of our economy if Trump's elected a 15% tax cut will probably get a lot of companies attention

  36. I've been living in China since July of last year, though my first visit was back in 2002. I've never seen anything like the amount of pictures of Xi JinPing plastered EVERYWHERE. Cult of personality indeed. I wish the average zhou in the streets well, but think that the times here are going to get more and more "interesting". Which according to my wife really isn't a Chinese curse…

  37. I find it ironic that given chis`s sarcastic style of comedy most Chinese people don`t seem to get sarcasm . at least in English .

  38. The main reason why the Cultural Revolution came about is because of the complete failure of Mao's Great Leap Forward and the astronomical numbers of criticism within the CCP and abroad in Soviet Russia to follow which Mao himself cannot take it anymore.

  39. this sounds like the cold war era US….soviet spies are everywhere!!!!! red scare!!!!!! they are everywhere!!!!!!!!

  40. You know a political party is beyond sick and perverted when they kill two million fellow citizens and as part of the macabre revelry, they hold "flesh banquets" which includes eating the hearts, livers & genitals of their victims, as the article at 1:45 of this video states happened.  I realize that the Chinese are known to eat anything that walks, swims, flies, crawls or slithers, but hopefully there will never be a repeat the that level of barbarous and totally inhumane practice anywhere in China.  …But anything is possible by such a repulsive and bereft of morals and ethics communist government…

  41. U chinese are so brainwashed seriously u people talk about wiki-1997 riots its indonesian who died and u forgot wiki-cultural revolution approximately 2000000 fuck mao

  42. I can not believe these traitorous filth, not once did the Americans ever seek or try to invade China. Not once, so many of the western world died to assist them in getting rid of the Japanese in the invasion that killed millions of their people. Absolutely disgusting. Vermin of this world.

  43. In southern Wuxuan, “the hearts, livers and genitals of victims were cut out and fed to revelers,” according to a “high-ranking member of an early 1980s official investigation,” who spoke anonymously, fearing repercussions.

    He has reportedly prepared a manuscript detailing his allegations but has not attempted to publish it. A previous book published after Tiananmen Square, called Scarlet Memorial, by journalist Zheng Yi, covered some of the same material.

    “All the cannibalism was due to class struggle being whipped up and was used to express a kind of hatred. The murder was ghastly, worse than beasts,” he said.

    He rattled off a string of horrors, including “beheadings, beatings, live burials, stonings, drownings, boilings, group slaughters, disembowellings, digging out hearts, livers, genitals, slicing off flesh, blowing up with dynamite, and more.”

    In one vivid example from 1968, a teacher was beaten to death, then another teacher was forced at gunpoint to rip out his heart and liver, which were barbecued and eaten by the students.

    “The more you talk about such things, the more current CCP leaders are worried,” X.L. Ding of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology told AFP.

    More specifically, he said the Party fears that “recalling the officially-sanctioned chaos and violence could undermine its legitimacy.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *