Update on Peking U Ideological Battle January, 2019
In a recent post, The Ideology of Occupation, I described an ideological struggle being played out last month at Peking University, the combined Harvard-Yale of China. Now, a followup on what has happened to the "Old Marxist" students who questioned the manner in which CCP has been providing leadership of the proletariat. Spoiler - they are in jail.
Bill Bishop has the story at Sinocism - Seven Maoist Students Detained in Beijing After Talking to Foreign Media Original story from Radio Free Asia. A video was made by Peking student Zhang Ziwei immediately before he was himself detained -
"I'm Zhang Ziwei," the recording says. "Six of my classmates have been detained already today, two of them just downstairs from where we live."
"They were shoved into a car, shouting 'call the police!,'" Zhang says, adding that he too is a target.
"Dark forces are conducting house-to-house searches right now," he says. "They want to take me away too, just like they did to the others."
It appears that the "Old Marxist" students have been not only defeated, but jailed. Their support for the Marxism of class struggle is out of date in the modern China of Xi Jinping.
I am reminded of the climactic scene in the movie A Few Good Men in which Colonel Jessup (Jack Nicholson) rages against the upstart attorney Lieutenant Kaffee (Tom Cruise). In the setup, the Colonel is standing on the wall, battling the forces of evil, while Kaffee and his cohort stand for rule of law and honor to regulations and tradition, properly understood. Jessup rages against Kaffee and colleagues for questioning the manner in which Jessup stands on the wall - You Can't Handle the Truth. You know the scene, and how it ends. Jessup claims a greater responsibility than Kaffee can imagine. So, too, at Peking U. In this Peking University struggle, the New Marxists are the forces of modernity, standing on the wall and battling the forces of western imperialism and western thought and western concepts. CCP will determine what socialism and Communism means, and there can only be one source of truth. There is no questioning of the manner in which CCP provides leadership. In the Chinese version of the movie, Jessup would be exonerated and honored. The "Old Marxist" students, representing the outdated western import of Marxism, can't handle the truth.