Unfulfilled Promises

Mao Tse-tung
April 24, 1945
From the
Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung,
Foreign Languages Press
Peking 1967

pages 256-7
9. The Problem of the Minority Nationalities
The anti-popular clique of the Kuomintang denies that many nationalities exist
in China, and labels all excepting the Han nationality as "tribes". It has
taken over the reactionary policy of the governments of the Ching Dynasty and
of the Northern warlords in relation to the minority nationalities, oppressing
and exploiting them in every possible way. Clear cases in point are the
massacre of Mongolians of the Ikhchao League in 1943, the armed suppression of
the minority nationalities in Sinkiang since 1944 and the massacres of the Hui
people in Kansu Province in recent years. These are manifestations of a wrong
Han-chauvinistic ideology and policy.

In 1924 Dr. Sun Yat-sen wrote in the Manifesto of the First National
Congress of the Kuomintang that "the Kuomintang's Principle of Nationalism
has a twofold meaning, first, the liberation of the Chinese nation, and
second, the equality of all the nationalities in China" and that "the
Kuomintang solemnly declares that it recognizes the right to
self-determination of all the nationalities in China and that a free and
united republic of China (a free union of all the nationalities) will be
established when the anti-imperialist and anti-warlord revolution is

The Communist Party of China is in full agreement with Dr. Sun's policy on
nationalities as stated here. Communists must actively help the people of all
the minority nationalities to fight for it, and help them, including all their
leaders who have ties with the masses, to fight for their political, economic
and cultural emancipation and development and to establish their own armies
which will safeguard the people's interests. Their spoken and written
languages, their manners and customs and their religious beliefs must be
Mao Tse-tung
July 20, 1946
From the
Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung,
Foreign Languages Press
Peking 1969
page 95
(4) Agreement on the Draft Constitution. This agreement provided for the
establishment of a review committee to revise the draft constitution prepared
by the Kuomintang and laid down the principles for revision. In addition to
prescribing the principles governing the duties and powers of the National
Assembly and government organizations, special provisions were made regarding
"local government" and "the rights and duties of the people". With respect to
"local government", it provided that "the province shall be the highest unit
of local self-government"; that "the powers of the provincial government in
relation to those of the central government shall be defined according to the
principle of a fair distribution of powers"; that "the provincial governor
shall be elected by the people"; and that "the province may have a provincial
constitution which, however, must not contravene the provisions of the
national constitution". With respect to "the rights and duties of the people",
it provided that "all freedoms and rights which are generally enjoyed by the
people of a democratic country shall be protected by the constitution against
illegal violation"; that "if any provision is made by law regarding the
freedom of the people, it shall be aimed at the protection of such freedom and
not at its restriction"; that "drafting of labour may be provided for in local
laws, but not in the national constitution"; and that "the right of
self-government shall be guaranteed to minority nationalities who live
together in specific communities".
Mao Tse-tung

From the
Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung,
Foreign Languages Press
Peking 1977
page 170
In passing, a few words about minority nationality work. We must combat
Han chauvinism. Don't get the idea that it is the Han nationality that has
been helping the minority nationalities. In fact, the minority nationalities
have been helping the Han nationality a great deal. Some comrades like to brag
about the help given to the minority nationalities, but they don't realize
that we can't do without the minority nationalities. Who is it that inhabits
50 to 60 per cent of our territory, the Hans or the other nationalities? The
minority nationalities. Rich resources and hidden wealth abound in these
areas. Till now we have given the minority nationalities little help and in
some places no help at all, whereas the minority nationalities have rendered
help to the Hans. Some minority nationalities, however, must have our help
first before they can help us. Politically the minority nationalities have
given the Han nationality big help; their participation in the community of
the Chinese nation constitutes political help to the Han nationality. The
people of the whole country are pleased that the minority nationalities and
the Hans are united. So the minority nationalities have been a great help
politically, economically and in national defence to the whole country, the
whole Chinese nation. It is wrong to think that only the Hans have helped the
minority nationalities while the minority nationalities have not helped the
Hans, or to swell with pride over the little help given to the minority
Mao Tse-tung
From the
Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung,
Foreign Languages Press
Peking 1969

page 151
(7) Recognize the right to equality and autonomy of the minority
nationalities within the borders of China.

Mao Tse-tung
April 25, 1956
From the
Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung,
Foreign Languages Press
Peking 1977

page 296
Comparatively speaking, our policy on the relationship between the Han
nationality and the minority nationalities is sound and has won the favour of
the minority nationalities. We put the emphasis on opposing Han chauvinism.
Local-nationality chauvinism must be opposed too, but generally that is not
where our emphasis lies.

The population of the minority nationalities in our country is small, but the
area they inhabit is large. The Han people comprise 94 per cent of the total
population, an overwhelming majority. If they practised Han chauvinism and
discriminated against the minority peoples, that would be very bad. And who
has more land? The minority nationalities, who occupy so to 60 per cent of the
territory. We say China is a country vast in territory, rich in resources and
large in population; as a matter of fact, it is the Han nationality whose
population is large and the minority nationalities whose territory is vast and
whose resources are rich, or at least in all probability their resources under
the soil are rich.

Mao Tse-tung

From the
Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung,
Foreign Languages Press
Peking 1977
page 489
There should also be a ten-year programme for family planning. However, it
should not be promoted in the minority nationality areas or in sparsely
populated regions. Even in densely populated regions it is necessary to try it
out in selected places and then spread it step by step until family planning
gradually becomes universal. Family planning requires open education, which
simply means airing views freely and holding great debates. As far as
procreation is concerned, the human race has been in a state of total anarchy
and has failed to exercise control. The complete realization of family
planning in the future will be out of the question without the weight of
society as a whole behind it, that is, without general consent and joint