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Inside secrets calls for reflection on 1957 campaign
The Epoch Times
12/18/2004

Beijing residents are rushing to bookstores to get their hands on Inside Secrets – the Altercations in 1957, an account of the Communist Central Party’s Anti-rightist campaign of 1957. Why the rush? Readers are trying to get a hold of it before the Central Party Propaganda Ministry can. They predict that Inside Secrets will be banned once Ministry officials read it. Such was the case with The Past is Not Just Smoke.

Written by Hu Ping, Inside Secrets gives an unflattering account of the 1957 Anti-rightist campaign. The two-volume set offers a collection of personal interviews of people inside and outside China, along with the author’s analysis of this period of history in China. Some believe that this angle is even more daring than The Past is Not Just Smoke, a haunting portrayal of the Anti-rightist campaign and the Cultural Revolution.

Inside Secrets (or Chanji in Chinese) depicts the behaviors of intellectuals during 1957’s Anti-rightist campaign. According to Hong Kong media, the book is brimming with respect for several nationally famous "Rightists," such as Zhang Bojun, Luo Longji, Chu Anping and their contemporaries. It also looks favorably upon Liu Binyan, Bai Hua and others who were publicly criticized for anti-bourgeois liberalization more than 10 years ago, and Qin Benli who was persecuted for an article published in The World Economic Herald. After reading the book, readers are likely to be more familiar with an older generation of democracy activists such as Zhang Bojun and Luo Longji.

Inside Secrets also describes Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi, Zhou Enlai and other Chinese leaders who maintained their independence during the Anti-rightist campaign, while simultaneously entangling themselves in the competitive survival process of the struggle for power. It analyzes why Mao originally supported the Anti-rightist campaign; Hu Ping asserts that Mao was sincere when he started allowing intellectuals to criticize the Party, but that Liu Shaoqi was not. In a move to gain the Party’s support, Liu changed his position and sought to apprehend outspoken intellectuals.

Other books with anti-Party sentiments were banned in mid-April at the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference in Beijing: The Past is Not Just Smoke and The Investigation of Chinese Peasants, which exposes the cruel oppression of rural peasants on farms during the reign of Jiang Zemin, according to Hong Kong Open magazine. Insiders say Jiang, the former head of the Communist Party and the military commission, was angered by the book’s publication.

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