History Leaping Forward

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment

At least one academic is acknowledging the genocide of China’s communist dictator Mao Tse Tung but not the scale of the chairman’s atrocities. In 1958  “Farmland, tools, livestock, and rural labor were hastily absorbed into large ‘People’s Communes,’ amid an intense campaign to raise output of grain and steel,” Thomas G. Rawski, a professor of Economics and History at the University of Pittsburgh, wrote in a paper which he delivered at the University of Pennsylvania in a conference sponsored by the Foreign Policy Research Institute, which is based at Penn. “This ‘Great Leap Forward’ shattered administrative routines, wasted vast resources, undermined work incentives, and triggered a man-made famine that cost 30 million lives.”


At that, he goes further than most texts. McDougal-Littell, for example, will acknowledge only the Chinese casualties in World War II at the hands of Axis powers.


Nevertheless, staggering as it is, 30 million is only half the total of Chinese murdered by Mao. “Among all the democide estimates appearing on this website, some have been revised upward. I have changed that for Mao’s famine, 1958-1962, from zero to 38,000,000,” University of Hawaii professor R. J. Rummel writes. “And thus I have had to change the overall democide for the PRC (1928-1987) from 38,702,000 to 76,702,000.”


Malcolm A. Kline is the Executive Director of Accuracy in Academia.

If you would like to comment on this article, e-mail mal.kline@academia.org


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