The forerunners of modernization have not only accumulated successful experience but also offered a path of development to late-comers. Thus, some habitually suppose that China as a late-developing country will definitely reach a dead end if it does not follow the proven track of forerunners.
Some use such a presupposed standard to forecast 30, 60 and 90 years ago that the path selected by China would reach an “impasse.” However, the legends created by the Chinese people under the leadership of the Communist Party of China have fully proven that China has explored a “China path” that marks a stark contrast to the Western benchmark path of modernization and is full of Chinese characteristics and in line with China’s reality.
Given the disunited situation in China coveted by foreign powers since the First Opium War, China had to first achieve national independence and the liberation of the Chinese people and completely remove obstacles to modernization at home and abroad before fulfilling its dream. This is the most pressing issue facing the Old China, to which there was not a ready answer.
The Party took on the historical mission, combined the fundamental tenets of Marxism with the reality of China and explored a Chinese revolution path by first occupying the countryside before encircling the cities as well as by seizing state power through armed forces. Through 28 years of struggle along the path, the Communist Party of China has led the Chinese people to completely change the fate of the Chinese nation, opened the chapter of the national rejuvenation and laid the institutional foundation for China’s modernization drive.
With great courage and valuable experience in building socialism, the Party developed the crucial reform and opening-up policy that determined the fate of contemporary China. The policy has shown the Party’s strong determination to advance with the times and to seek new ways to build socialism according to the will of the people.
Over the past 30 years, the Party has led the Chinese people to adhere to the basic principles of scientific socialism, to carry out reforms based on China’s specific conditions and the ever-changing international environment and to draw on foreign experiences in achieving modernization in order to prevent the same mistakes.
Furthermore, under the Party’s leadership, the Chinese people have inherited fine traditions, attached great importance to innovation under the principle of “seeking truth from facts,” and opened up the road of socialism with Chinese characteristics. It is on this road that China has caught up with Western developed countries in certain fields in just a few decades and enjoys a bright future with prosperity and national rejuvenation.
This road has given much new vigor and energy into socialism and made it shine again brightly in the new age, though some people once claimed it had “come to the end.” This road has gotten China out of the crisis of “being exiled from the Earth” and allowed China to play a significant role on the world stage. This road has also led China to its astonishing historic progress. On this road, China has realized historic changes from a highly centralized planned economic system to a vigorous socialist market economic system and from a country being closed or half-closed to a country that is fully opened. Economically, China realized a historic progress from a country that was poor to a country with the second largest economic aggregate in the world, and from a people without enough food and clothes to being comparatively well off.
The 1.3 billion people in China have caught up with the modern tide, the socialist system with Chinese characteristics is fully filled with energy, and the Chinese nation is proudly standing on the orient with unprecedented confidence.
This road expanded the way of modernization and enriched people’s understanding towards the law and the road of social development. The socialist road with Chinese characteristics combined the political advantages of the socialist system and the vitality of the market economy. It blended the excellent Chinese civilization and the excellent world civilization together.
China firmly overcame a series of major natural disasters to show the national strength of socialist China and calmly coped with the international financial crisis to take the lead in the steady recovery in the global economic downturn. The socialist road with Chinese characteristics also showed its great advantages and vitality to allow the large wheel of contemporary China’s modernization to have the confidence to move ahead in the waves and allow 1.3 billion Chinese people to have confidence when facing modernization, the world and the future.
The 90 years unremitting of exploration has proven that China’s path suits it the best. The Chinese nation has made great contributions to human civilization and should not take the branch road, the old road and the wrong road during its new journey of modernization and should firmly follow the “Chinese road” under the leadership of the Communist Party of China to create a new brilliance in the future.
By the commentator of People’s Daily, translated by People’s Daily Online