Much of Manchu Communism stems from the speech The theory of the application of Communism in Manchuria (ㄍㄨㄥㄔㄢ ㄓㄨㄧ ㄗㄞ ㄇㄢㄓㄡ ㄧㄥㄩㄥ ㄌㄧㄌㄨㄣ; Gòngchǎn zhǔyì zài mǎnzhōu yìngyòng lǐlùn) although Tao's actual domestic and foreign policies have also been listed as part of Manchu Commuism. The follow-up texts of The Rising Sun, Revolutionary Socialism in the Manchu State, Modern Manchu Communism, The Communist Factor and Communism of the 20st century (often collectively referred to as the Collected Works of Tao Shiyou) are also used as expansions of Manchu Communist theory. Manchu Communism was officially been the leading ideology of the Communist Party of Manchuria from 1981 to its dissolution in 1991. Manchu Communism advocates a neomercantilistic Soviet style command economy with central planning and nationalised businesses. However, unlike orthodox Marxism-Leninism Manchu Communism also emphasised pragmatic economic reform alongside political decentralisation.
Manchu Communism has been criticised by Marxists for being revisionist. It has also been labelled as economically infeasible, disregarding human rights, and dictatorial.
The term "Manchu Path to Communism" is thought to have come from a speech by Tao Shiyou, with the speech outlining the differences between Soviet socialism and Manchuria. Tao claimed that socialism could only be achieved in Manchuria if it followed a more nationalistic application that focussed more on developing Manchuria rather then advance internationalist goals.
"Manchu Communism" was first coined by American political journalist Gary Whittle who stated that "with the publication of his own political ramblings Manchu leader Tao Shiyou has effectively created his own brand of Manchu Communism, further showing the divisions in the communist world." The term caught on in Western media and has since been used as a negative coronation.
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Uzunism's origins can be traced in 1980 after the Communist Party of Manchuria under Tao Shiyou took a hard stance against the Stalinist members of the CPM, purging those deemed "Maoist neo-reactionaries". The Shūjìchù, led by Sun Xianxheng, was instrumental in propelling allies of Tao into government in favour of the conservative allies of former First Secretary Qian Yiu-tong. These new allies made up the majority of the Central Committee, Politburo, and People's Supreme Assembly.
Tao hoped to decentralise power from the centre in Harbin to the provinces, so that conservative forces within the party would not stall his planned reforms. He also hoped to somewhat reform the economy whilst keeping the foundations of economic planning and political repression intact as well as pursue détente with the western world. Tao, who was more of a nationalist then a communist, was sceptical of the Soviet Union, wishing to promote Manchurian nationalism and slowly break ties with the USSR - as such he was keen to theorise on his own form of communism which would be Manchurian in character.
In 1981 Tao made a speech named "the theory of the application of Communism in Manchuria". In this speech Tao asserted the need for a strong leader to guide Manchuria through communism, ending the consensus based approach of his predecessor Qian Yiu-tong whilst promoting economic pragmatism over idealism. As such, Tao effectively built a cult of personality and capitalised on populist nationalist rhetoric whilst pursuing moderate reforms in the economy and foreign relations. The orthodox conservatives in the party who wished to follow a more traditional Soviet line were sidelined as Tao asserted the Manchu Path to Communism as all supreme.
Manchu Communism's core theory advocates a Manchurian state must be supported by a centralised government dictated by a strongman politician and a self sufficient economy as well as ensuring that all dissidents are liquidated. Manchu Communism teaches that once the state has the sufficient resources it can acquire through socialism then a peaceful transition can be made to a communist society with the state voluntarily dismantling itself.
Manchu Communism states that the state and the people are one and the same, and that fundamentally people are classless. Manchu Communist theory states that "enemies of the revolution" are those who have flouted the authority of the state and the people, and thus cannot be assimilated into the people's society and thus have to eliminated to ensure social equality. Manchu Communism indicates that the enemies of the revolution are constantly trying to undermine the state, and such efforts should be punished harshly. Therefore, a strong cadre of loyal citizens of the state must always protect the state from hostile internal forces by monitoring and actively controlling citizens of the state.
Manchu Communism also puts forward that whilst society is classless it is natural for strong leaders to emerge who will become the pinnacle of the Manchurian people. Manchu Communism teaches that if the people emulate these leaders then the people will become stronger as a result, as well as being more united. Social equality however is held to be essential in Manchu Communism which teaches that there should be little discrimination based on age, gender or race. Despite this Manchu Communism at times often vilified the Japanese.