Part 12 The formation of the government in 1949


Starting from October 9 until October 21 the nominations on the ministries are in full swing. CCP members control the ministries related to power and security. These are the foreign office, the ministries of public security, railways, heavy industry and food industry. In the first instance only CCP members worked on the foreign office, but due to inexperience of these officials, Zhou Enlai was forced to hire ex GMD personnel advisors.The new government also needed Soviet expertise. On almost every ministry SU specialist were present.
On the less important ministries the vice minister or assistant minister are members of the minzhu dangpai. These ministries are for example the home office, finance, trade, and labour. The lowest ministries in the governmental structure all have minzhu dangpai ministers. These are ministries like ministery of health,light industry and forestry. The control is in hands of CCP vice ministers or assistant ministers. Andrews (1994) remarks: "One striking feature of the Chinese system is the arbitrariness with which power is held and exercised within the bureaucracy. A person's job title is no guarantee that he or she exerts a specific kind of authority in a given period, nor does lack of title necessarily mean that power cannot be exercised."
Andrews, Julia F. (1994). Painters and politics in the People's Republic of China, 1949-1979. University of California Press. Page 5
See also Chart 1
chart 1 government structure
For example “…the Minister,Li Te-chuan (Li Dequan) (of Public Health),is largely a figurehead appointed because of her husband Feng Yü-hsiang (Feng Yuxiang) and her own leftist activities before 1949. Ho Ch'eng (He Cheng), who had been with the Red Army medical units since Kiangsi days (1931), was the real power in the Ministry until his downfall over the question of traditional medicine.”
Croizier Ralph C. (1965). Traditional medicine in communist China: Science, communism and cultural nationalism. The China Quarterly, 23. Page 12

In order to strengthen the control on the administration, the CCP decided in November 1949 to establish Political Core Groups (PCG) on national, regional and municipal level. The goal is to ensure party leadership over the government. Even the Supreme People's Court and the Supreme People's Procuratorate have their own PCG.
On March 10, 1953 the Politburo decided to further strengthen the control of the party leadership over the government and stipulated “From now on, major and important principles, policies, plans and matters in government work must be discussed, decided or approved by the Party Central Committee. . . . [T]he work of Party core groups in all the agencies of the central government must be strengthened and be under the direct leadership of the Party Central Committee. Therefore, the present system of the council of Party core group secretaries in the central people's government is no longer necessary and should be abolished immediately. 23”
Zheng Shiping (1997). Party vs. State in Post-1949 China The Institutional Dilemma. Cambridge university press. Page 85
Beside these PCG there also exist party work departments on all levels of the administration. At the start their work involves propaganda and united front work, later on these party work departments frequently take over the daily work of the units of the government. Zheng (1997) remarks: “Here the Chinese central and local administrative system would easily confuse anyone, because what we have observed were not just one or two, but three, different systems: One was the administrative hierarchy of the government itself; another was the system of PCGs within the government; and the third was the Party work departments that were outside the government but overlapped the government agencies”
Zheng (1997). Party vs. State. Page 88



Many of the ministers and vice ministers have a military background. Two other recruitment backgrounds can also be identified. During the 1930’s the CCP recruited many university students. Particularly in 1936, after the December 9th movement. During this student movement students demanded an active response from the GMD government against Japanese aggression. The second group are the so-called “38-style cadres”. They joined the party in the second year (1938) of the Japanese occupation. They are often students of well-to-do family background and are considered more nationalist then communist. Most of these party cadres work after 1949 in the field of propaganda, education, culture and economics.
Zang Xiaowei (2004). Elite Dualism and Leadership Selection in China. Routledge. Page 49


Table 7
Table 7 CCP members and minzhu dangpai members on Ministries and Commissions 1953
shows the division of labour in 1953 between minzhu dangpai and CCP members. The small table below displays leadership cadres in the rank of ministers and deputy ministers in the central government, 1954 source:Heilmann Sebastian & Kirchberger Sarah (2000). The Chinese nomenklatura in transition. A study based on internal cadre statistics of the central organization department of the Chinese Communist Party. China Analysis 1. Trier University. Page 12

Ex GMD personnel....

March 1949 the plenum of the CCP decides to keep all important GMD officials in their position if they are willing to cooperate with the new regime. Not only on governmental level but also on regional level most of the GMD officials are kept in their position. Deng Xiaoping (1949) stresses in a telegram the importance of this policy. “The Central Committee has made it clear that personnel taken over from the Kuomintang institutions ,including military officers and men, government employees and factory workers and staff, should all be accepted; not one of them should be dismissed.”
Document: 12-11-1949 Tactics for working in the new area of Guizhou
The ministry of finance declares 90% of the tax collectors were earlier serving the GMD. GMD officials almost totally occupy the positions in the ministry of Justice.
Gluckstein Ygael (1957). Mao’s China economic and political survey. London. Page 367
The need for specialists is enormous, so criteria for employment are very flexible.
"Through underground Party cells and overt entreaties, the CCP enticed even high-ranking officials and judges of the former regime with no apparent leftist sympathies, such as the brilliant
Yang Zhaolong
Yang Zhaolong (1904-1979) The last acting Procurator-General of the Republican Supreme Court
, head of the Criminal Section of the Republican Ministry of Justice and protégé of Roscoe Pound, to stay and contribute to the building of “New China".
Tiffert Glenn D. (2009). Epistrophy: Chinese Constitutionalism and the 1950s. In S. Balme & M.W. Dowdle, (Eds.), Building constitutionalism in China. New York, NY: Palgrave-Macmillan. Page 64
“Yet, for all the effort the Guomindang put in to partification, large segments of the judiciary deserted it. Before Beiping fell, the presidents of the city’s Local Court and Provincial High Court were both covert CCP collaborators. 84 After 1949, many Republican judges stayed at their posts to serve the CCP. Up until the purges of the 1952-53 Judicial Reform Campaign, 97 of the 120 judges on the Tianjin Municipal People’s Court were former Republican personnel, as were 80 of the 104 judges on the Shanghai Municipal People’s Court, and thirteen of the sixteen judges on the Central-South Branch of the Supreme People’s Court in Wuhan.” Tiffert, Glenn D. 2011. “The Chinese Judge : From Literatus to Cadre ( 1907-1949 )” http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1948259. Pages 44-45
In Jinan the capital of Shandong about 75 to 80% of the old officials kept their jobs. In 1950 the total numbers of old GMD cadres on duty are more than 400.000 persons, more or less a quarter of the total amount of officials.
Davis Deborah S. (2000). Social class transformation in urban China: Training, hiring, and promoting urban professionals and managers after 1949. Modern China, 26, (3). Page 272
In Shanghai 95% of the GMD personnel stay on their job after the takeover.
Wakeman Frederic E. (1995). Policing Shanghai, 1927-1937. University of California Press. Page 420
Also in the rural areas the GMD administrators keep their jobs. In his December 1949 report to Stalin Kovalev remarks: "Filling vacancies in the government apparatus is taking place exceedingly slowly. In the majority of ministries and central institutions apparatus is less than half full, and in some ministries, for example those of light industry, textile industry, forestry, [and] labour, there are no officials at all except for the ministers and their deputies. Creation of organs of state power in the localities almost has not been embarked upon yet."
Document:24-12-1949 Excerpts from Kovalev Report to Stalin, "Some Policies of the CCP Central Leadership and Practical Problems"
Table 8
Table 8 Regional representation of minzhu dangpai
shows on regional level the representation of minzhu dangpai. This table is just an indication and is not at all complete.
The shortage of capable officials is very big. "According to the report of the conversation between Lu Dingyi, the Head of the Chinese Communist Party Central Organizational Department, and Sherbaiev, the Soviet Charge d'Affaires to China, among one and half million Chinese Communist Party members in the Northern China Region (Huabei) one million three hundred thousand were illiterate. Among leadership above the district level (qu), almost half were illiterate or only had very little formal education. The Chinese Communist Party planned to spend two to three years to eliminate illiteracy among the party's lower-level cadres, and five years to achieve lit- eracy among the rank-and-file party members.35"
Shen Zhihua (2002). Historical examination of the issue of soviet experts in China: basic situation and policy changes. Russian History,29, 2. Page 384
Besides the lack of capable cadres, the new regime faced also a huge unorganized urban population. "As a means to overcome the discrepancy between the regime’s interventionist plan and its own capacity to materialize it, the plan to organize the masses beyond the administration system was conceived. The names of the mass organizations multiplied at the street level ..., and this clearly shows not only that the government needed to establish these organizations at the street level, but also that the government planned enormous works to provide various urban services."
Park Sang-Soo (2015). Neighborhood Space in 1950s Beijing: Urban Governance in the Early PRC. Page 9. Park further remarks "The regime, facing the lack of state cadres in street administration, was vigorously seeking activists with the intention of implementing various urban works with their support.29 However, the street mass organizations sprung up rapidly in early years, and enacted ad hoc measures rather than meticulous plans, which provoked serious functional defects. The large number of mass organizations remains nominal, and the activists, who are few in number, should undertake the responsibilities in different mass organizations simultaneously." Page 9. Park notices "A limited number of street activists spent time typically designated for their profession and housework to street works, occupying several positions simultaneously in over 20 sorts of different mass organizations,.. " Page 16
See Table Mass organizations.
Even members of secret organizations can qualify for senior positions. During the civil war the PLA has frequently used the secret organizations to beat the GMD. The most famous persons is Zhu De, who became one of the most important officers in the PLA. Soon after 1949 members of the secret organizations are the first to be persecuted.
Lintner Bertil (2002). Blood brothers: Crime, business and politics in Asia. Crows Nest, N.S.W. Page 68-69
See Article 5 .
According to U (2004) on a local level "Staff recruitment during the early socialist years was driven not by what organizations within the emerging socialist political economy needed but by the unequal privileges among institutions, a state desire to alleviate unemployment, and the need to reorganize state establishments. No doubt some work organizations— that is, those well placed within the hierarchy of socialist institutions—absorbed new workers who were desirable on both political and technical grounds. For the rest, however, compliance with state dictates led to less happy results. "
U Eddy (2004). The Hiring of Rejects Teacher Recruitment and Crises of Socialism in the Early PRC Years. Modern China, 30, 1. Page 48. U also remarks staff is recruited from "...“unemployed intellectuals.” They entered the profession as the state tried to address rising urban unemployment, and they included former business owners and landlords, Nationalist officials and agents, and white-collar workers who had been disciplined and dismissed by their employers." Page 49

New ambassadors....

The embassies is one of the sectors where many of the GMD officials are fired or they have left for Taiwan. Military persons take these vacant positions. Persons like Wu Xiuquan, Geng Biao, Ji Pengfei and Huang Zhen. At the end 1950 of the 15 ambassadors sent abroad 11 have the rank of a general.
“The Ministerial criteria of selecting ambassadors and consuls: 1) political loyalty and reliability; 2) knowledgeable, any ability in using foreign language would be a plus; 3) cautious, well-rounded, determined to implement policies and observe the leaders; 4) division, brigade or above level cadres.”
Zhou Enlai cited in Zhong Wenrui (2013). Military-diplomatic adventurism: communist China’s foreign policy in the early stage of the Korean war (1950-1951) MA thesis, University of north Texas. Page 38
These new ambassadors lack diplomacy, they are more messengers instead of negotiators. The Chinese ambassadors consider foreign countries as territories of the enemy.

Recruitment of military personnel for administration....

Military personnel are the main source for recruitment: " …PLA officers took up the leading posts in the newly established administration in the places they had seized. Millions of the PLA officers were assigned to civilian posts, and this practice was soon routinized into a system called zhuanye (transferring the officers to civilian posts). As a result, most local administrative posts were filled by the officers from the armies that had seized the area. Although numerous cadres were transported from the base areas to the new areas,.."
Huang Jing (2000). Factionalism in Chinese communist politics. Cambridge. Page 148
Solinger
Solinger Dorothy J.(1977). Regional government and political integration in southwest China, 1949-1954: A case study. University of California Press. Page Appendix
states in the appendix "Key Southwest Great Administrative Region Officials, 1949-1954' that in the military structure on regional and national level are also old GMD officials in function. In the national defense council 30 generals of the 96 in total have a GMD background. A lot of them have chosen the side of the PLA in order to survive. The party had already applied the tactic to appoint non-communist on several more or less important positions in the ‘liberated’ areas before 1949.
“…ils sont choisis en fonction de leur proximité avec le Parti, de la confiance qu’on leur accorde, de leurs compétences ou encore de leur influence, à l’instar de Zhang Lan, Huang Yanpei ou Zhang Dongsun. Ces mêmes critères président à la formation des gouvernements provinciaux et municipaux, au choix des responsables aux différents échelons de l’administration et à la désignation des responsables des syndicats, des huit petits partis et des nouvelles associations professionnelles et culturelles dont les bases ont été jetées à l’été 1949”.
Vidal Christine (2008). D’un régime à l’autre : Les intellectuels ralliés au pouvoir communiste, 1948-1952. Etudes chinoises, 27. Page 61
Translation:” .. They are selected based on their proximity to the Party, their reliance, their skills or their influence, like Zhang Lan, Huang and Zhang Dongsun Yanpei. The same criteria govern the formation of provincial and municipal governments, the selection of leaders at the various levels of government and the appointment of the heads of trade unions, eight small parties and new professional and cultural associations whose foundations were laid in the summer of 1949,... "


Literature Notes Documents...

1.Andrews, Julia F. (1994). Painters and politics in the People's Republic of China, 1949-1979. University of California Press. Page 5 Back
3.Croizier Ralph C. (1965). Traditional medicine in communist China: Science, communism and cultural nationalism. The China Quarterly, 23. Page 12 Back
4.Zheng Shiping (1997). Party vs. State in Post-1949 China The Institutional Dilemma. Cambridge university press. Page 85 Back
5.Zheng (1997). Party vs. State. Page 88. The growing influence of the party can be seen in the table below.

Zheng (1997). Page 90 Back
6.Zang Xiaowei (2004). Elite Dualism and Leadership Selection in China. Routledge. Page 49 Back
9.Gluckstein Ygael (1957). Mao’s China economic and political survey. London. Page 367 Back
10.Tiffert Glenn D. (2009). Epistrophy: Chinese Constitutionalism and the 1950s. In S. Balme & M.W. Dowdle, (Eds.), Building constitutionalism in China. New York, NY: Palgrave-Macmillan. Page 64 Back
11. “Yet, for all the effort the Guomindang put in to partification, large segments of the judiciary deserted it. Before Beiping fell, the presidents of the city’s Local Court and Provincial High Court were both covert CCP collaborators. 84 After 1949, many Republican judges stayed at their posts to serve the CCP. Up until the purges of the 1952-53 Judicial Reform Campaign, 97 of the 120 judges on the Tianjin Municipal People’s Court were former Republican personnel, as were 80 of the 104 judges on the Shanghai Municipal People’s Court, and thirteen of the sixteen judges on the Central-South Branch of the Supreme People’s Court in Wuhan.” Tiffert, Glenn D. 2011. “The Chinese Judge : From Literatus to Cadre ( 1907-1949 )” http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1948259. Pages 44-45 Back
12.Davis Deborah S. (2000). Social class transformation in urban China: Training, hiring, and promoting urban professionals and managers after 1949. Modern China, 26, (3). Page 272 Back
13.Wakeman Frederic E. (1995). Policing Shanghai, 1927-1937. University of California Press. Page 420 Back
16.Shen Zhihua (2002). Historical examination of the issue of soviet experts in China: basic situation and policy changes. Russian History,29, 2. Page 384 Back
17. Park Sang-Soo (2015). Neighborhood Space in 1950s Beijing: Urban Governance in the Early PRC. Page 9. Park further remarks "The regime, facing the lack of state cadres in street administration, was vigorously seeking activists with the intention of implementing various urban works with their support.29 However, the street mass organizations sprung up rapidly in early years, and enacted ad hoc measures rather than meticulous plans, which provoked serious functional defects. The large number of mass organizations remains nominal, and the activists, who are few in number, should undertake the responsibilities in different mass organizations simultaneously." Page 9. Park notices "A limited number of street activists spent time typically designated for their profession and housework to street works, occupying several positions simultaneously in over 20 sorts of different mass organizations,.. " Page 16 Back
18.Lintner Bertil (2002). Blood brothers: Crime, business and politics in Asia. Crows Nest, N.S.W. Page 68-69 Back
19.U Eddy (2004). The Hiring of Rejects Teacher Recruitment and Crises of Socialism in the Early PRC Years. Modern China, 30, 1. Page 48. U also remarks staff is recruited from "...“unemployed intellectuals.” They entered the profession as the state tried to address rising urban unemployment, and they included former business owners and landlords, Nationalist officials and agents, and white-collar workers who had been disciplined and dismissed by their employers." Page 49 Back
20.Zhong Wenrui (2013). Military-diplomatic adventurism: communist China’s foreign policy in the early stage of the Korean war (1950-1951) MA thesis, University of north Texas. Page 38 Back
21.Huang Jing (2000). Factionalism in Chinese communist politics. Cambridge. Page 148 Back
22.Solinger Dorothy J.(1977). Regional government and political integration in southwest China, 1949-1954: A case study. University of California Press. Page Appendix Back
23.Vidal Christine (2008). D’un régime à l’autre : Les intellectuels ralliés au pouvoir communiste, 1948-1952. Etudes chinoises, 27. Page 61 Back
24.” .. They are selected based on their proximity to the Party, their reliance, their skills or their influence, like Zhang Lan, Huang and Zhang Dongsun Yanpei. The same criteria govern the formation of provincial and municipal governments, the selection of leaders at the various levels of government and the appointment of the heads of trade unions, eight small parties and new professional and cultural associations whose foundations were laid in the summer of 1949,... "Back
Next Part 13: Complaints about recruitment