Article 25 of the Common Program
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Article 25 of the Common Program

Dependents of those who have given their lives for the revolution and of members of the revolutionary forces, who are in need, shall receive preferential treatment, from the state and from society. The people's government shall make appropriate arrangements for disabled or retired service men who have participated in the revolutionary war, providing them with the means of livelihood or with occupations.


May 15, 1950, The
RMC
October 20, 1949 People's Revolutionary Military Commission of the Central People's Government Front row from left: Su Yu, Zhou Enlai, Zhu De, Mao, Cheng Qian, Liu Shaoqi, Chen Yi; middle row from left: Nie Rongzhen, Gao Gang, Zhang Zhizhong, Deng Xiaoping, Zhang Yunyi, Liu Fei; back row from left: Lo Ruiqing, He Long, Cai Tingkai, Fu Zuoyi, Liu Bocheng
decided to reduce the PLA to 3 million soldiers. This process has to elapse in two periods. The first phase, about 1,4 million soldiers have to leave service. This reduction has several goals, first of all to get rid of the ex-GMD soldiers whose loyalty is unsure. Secondly, to modernize the PLA and to establish the PLAN and PLAAF, money has to be saved on salary and logistics. Army officers who are transferred to the civilian sector, are entitled to a post equivalent to their military rank in terms of salary, level, and additional benefits. Many demobilized soldiers are assigned to coercive institutions and to political positions that require only low-level technical competence, such as the political department in a factory or workshop.
During the implementation of these policies, North Korea invades South Korea. See Article 54 The RMC decides to continue with the plan, but a few months later the demobilization stops and troops are gathered near the border with North Korea.
Shen Zhihua (1998). China sends troops to Korea: Beijing’s policy-making process. In Li Xiaobing & Li Hongshan (Eds.), China and the United States: A new cold war history. Page 22
A demobilization committee has the task to organize the schema. Over 1000 Veteran Administration Offices are founded throughout the country. In mid- October 1950, these offices changed to recruiting offices for the war in Korea.
"Many of the recently opened offices simply changed their signs from Veteran Administration Office to New Recruitment Office, using the same staff at the same location.” Li Xiaobing (2007). A history of the modern Chinese army. Page 87

Phase two starts as soon as the Korean War allows reduction. Between 1952 and October 1953, about 2 million soldiers left the army and between 1954 and 1958 about 1,8 million. Most demobilized soldiers are women (totaling an estimated 764,000 or 25.3 percent), ex-GMD, elderly people, and physical weak. Specialists and young intellectuals are moved to important industrial projects.

The main characteristic of the general demobilization policy is resettlement. These means returning to the place of birth. This process is far from easy, because many recruits have joined the army to escape the poor conditions of their villages and they are unwilling to return.
Diamant Neil J. & O’Brien Kevin J. (2013). Veterans’ Political Activism in China. Page 12
Other veterans have lost their entire families during the wars and arrive as ‘strangers ’in their village, sometimes they are adopted as a son by poor families because of the privileges they receive. 100.000 ex-soldiers are more or less deported to the province of Heilongjiang to exploit new farmland. Xinjiang is also an area where recruits are sent to. (See Article 2). Veterans who return home determine that their spouses have divorced or want to divorce. (See Article 6). During the civil war, and Japanese war several women are raped which also causes many domestic problems. The ACFDW tries to arrange marriages between handicapped ex-soldiers and widows.

Officers have the right to a new job with the same status, salary, and position. The ordinary soldiers, who are often low educated but have a long history as a party member, receive jobs in the political section of factories and workshops.
“Given their superior political standing, the CCP has expected them not merely to rejoin civilian society but to take leadership responsibilities in all areas of activity, both inside and outside the state machine. As a result, soldiers and ex-soldiers have been granted priority access to Party membership and cadre positions in the state and collective sectors. Ex-soldiers assigned to ordinary jobs, moreover, were expected to play a special political role as " models " (mofan) and " advanced people " (xianjin renwu) and take the lead (daitou) as pioneers.”
White Gordon (1980). The politics of demobilized soldiers from liberation to cultural revolution. Page 189
In addition, they get priority in training and during the Land Reform “'landlord exemptions' were given to dependent families allowing those already holding land to retain, or in some cases gain, additional land beyond that of what regular households could hold. Large landholding, once common among official families, became the domain of military families.”
Ross Jason W. (2008). Shaping the Chinese people's liberation army's image: Historical roots to modern trends. Page 18
Sometimes benefit performances are held, for example, on August 1, 1949, when the movie star
Shi Hui
Shi Hui (1915-1957) Movie star and director.
and a friend performed a xiangsheng comedy routine as part of a radio fund-raising event to benefit army veterans.
As we have seen in Article 20, about 30 percent of the PLA soldiers have a GMD background and to make things more complicated “During the Civil War, entire Nationalist units (many of whom fought very valiantly —and patriotically —against Japan) switched sides. These circumstances were quite complex, reflecting the chaos of war; shifting alliances between the CCP, Nationalists, warlords, and secret societies; and divided family alliances. Even death was complicated: as late as 1963 there were memorial sites that had Nationalist Party corpses mixed in with Communist Party martyrs.87 As a result, the PLA that emerged from the civil war in 1949 was a predominantly rural force but also included people who had a variety of class and social backgrounds, and so did its veterans.”
Diamant Neil J. (2010). Embattled glory: Veterans, military families, and the politics of patriotism in China, 1949–2007. Page 121
At the first national civil affairs conference in July 1950 the following duties for Civil Affairs Departments are laid down: “…, preferential treatment, resettlement of demobilized personnel, social relief, work relief, hardship subsidy, land administration, household registration, ..”
Wong Linda (2005). Marginalization and Social Welfare in China. Page 44
and at December 11, 1950, the government promulgates 5 provisional regulations which concern;
1.The families of revolutionary martyrs and revolutionary military personnel
2. Disabled revolutionary military personnel
3.The posthumous commendation of revolutionary military personnel who died in action or from illness, and for compensation for their families
4.The commendation of injured or killed revolutionary workers and compensation for their families
5.Injured militia and civilian laborers and to the families of those killed These regulations were based on the measures of 1932
Already in 01-02-1932 Practical measures for carrying out regulations governing preferential treatment for red army members


Although these regulations in theory improve the status and the compensation of the veterans “…but the general pattern suggests that “civilian” party officials either flatly refused to recognize, or at least pretended to refuse to recognize when it served their interest, veterans’ contributions (to fighting the Japanese or the United States), focusing instead on their anti-Communist history or (rarely existing) “class purity” as the most important method of evaluating political worthiness. In 1951, a report noted, veterans with “complicated” backgrounds languished without land, jobs, or housing for as long as a year; some lived in guesthouses and subsisted on welfare funds that were distributed to “ordinary” poor people,96 and in villages some of these veterans were immediately placed under surveillance.”
Diamant Neil J. (2010). Embattled glory. Pages 121-122
Those veterans who acquired a job were “…usually (placed) at the lowest rung of the hierarchy— as apprentices and contract and temporary workers. Such placement meant that they earned less than workers who were younger but who had more skills and work experience, or were better educated. Veterans could have earned more to the extent that their units followed national salary regulations, which stated that veterans’ civilian job rank and salary scale should include their time in the army. cii”
Diamant Neil J. (2007).Veterans and the Failure of Martial Citizenship in China. Page 21
Demobilized PLA soldiers were employed by municipal bureaus of Public Security in the capital and in cities elsewhere, mostly inexperienced lower-level officers, "...many of them uncomfortable in their new role, were concerned that the “masters of New China” –which they took to mean the ordinary working-class men and women with whom they interacted on a daily basis – would become disenchanted with them, or that they would befall an even worse fate if they were found to be operating covert agent networks that for an outsider might be hard to distinguish from those that had been run by the Guomindang and the Japanese in the past.18"
Schoenhals Michael (2012). Spying for the People Mao’s Secret Agents, 1949–1967. Pages 54-55
"Disabled soldiers, police, militia and civilian workers hurt in combat as well as cadres of (the Minzhu dangpai) get relief, This relief was previously given in grain (1950-52) and from 1953, in cash, with payment dispensed twice yearly. Rates varied according to degree of disability, cause and residential status."
Wong Linda (1992) Social welfare under Chinese socialism---a case study of the Ministry of Civil Affairs. Page 170
Physical and mental problems are often not identified or treated “…lack of modern medical care and supplies also resulted in veterans with serious war-related disabilities, chronic diseases (…), posttraumatic stress disorder (then diagnosed as “insanity”), depression, or unexplained maladies.”
Diamant Neil J. (2006). The Stubborn Myth of `Rising Patriotism' in Modern China. Page 12


Remarkable is the fact that there is/are no national or local representative organization(s), unlike in other (socialist) countries for the veterans in the People's Republic of China. There is no established mass organization for these veterans. "The PRC does have an Army Day (August 1) during which the state celebrates the achievements of the military and "comforts" (naiwen) military dependents, family members of revolutionary martyrs, and disabled veterans; but it is generally seen as a day to support mobilized soldiers and their families, not veterans."
Diamant Neil J. (2008).Veterans, Organization, and the Politics of Martial Citizenship in China. Page 149 note 2

They have no representation in the national parades.
"more-or-less standard pattern” in parades after 1951 gave representation to an honor guard. Young Pioneers, workers, peasants, government employees, urbanites, representatives from industrial and commercial sectors, students, artists and performers, and athletes." Hung Chang-tai (2007). Mao’s parades: State spectacles in China in the 1950s. Pages 417-418

Shen Zhihua (1998). China sends troops to Korea: Beijing’s policy-making process. In Li Xiaobing & Li Hongshan (Eds.), China and the United States: A new cold war history. Page 22 Back
"Many of the recently opened offices simply changed their signs from Veteran Administration Office to New Recruitment Office, using the same staff at the same location.” Li Xiaobing (2007). A history of the modern Chinese army. Page 87 Back
Diamant Neil J. & O’Brien Kevin J. (2013). Veterans’ Political Activism in China. Page 12 Back
White Gordon (1980). The politics of demobilized soldiers from liberation to cultural revolution. T Page 189 Back
Ross Jason W. (2008). Shaping the Chinese people's liberation army's image: Historical roots to modern trends. Page 18 Back
Diamant Neil J. (2010). Embattled glory: Veterans, military families, and the politics of patriotism in China, 1949–2007. Page 121 Back
Wong Linda (2005). Marginalization and Social Welfare in China. Page 44 Back
Diamant Neil J. (2010). Embattled glory. Pages 121-122 Back
Diamant Neil J. (2007).Veterans and the Failure of Martial Citizenship in China. Page 21 Back
Schoenhals Michael (2012). Spying for the People Mao’s Secret Agents, 1949–1967. Pages 54-55 Back
Wong Linda (1992) Social welfare under Chinese socialism---a case study of the Ministry of Civil Affairs. Page 170 Back
Diamant Neil J. (2006). The Stubborn Myth of `Rising Patriotism' in Modern China. Page 12 Back
Diamant Neil J. (2008).Veterans, Organization, and the Politics of Martial Citizenship in China. Page 149 note 2 Back
"more-or-less standard pattern” in parades after 1951 gave representation to an honor guard. Young Pioneers, workers, peasants, government employees, urbanites, representatives from industrial and commercial sectors, students, artists and performers, and athletes." Hung Chang-tai (2007). Mao’s parades: State spectacles in China in the 1950s. Pages 417-418 Back

Meetings....

06-06-1950: 3rd Enlarged Plenum of the 7th CC

15-07-1950: 1st national civil affairs conference