Speech of president Xi Jinping at a Ceremony Marking the Centenary of the Communist Party of China July 1, 2021

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Comrades and friends,
Today, the first of July, is a great and solemn day in the history of both the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the Chinese nation.

We gather here to join all Party members and Chinese people of all ethnic groups around the country in celebrating the centenary of the Party, looking back on the glorious journey the Party has traveled over 100 years of struggle, and looking ahead to the bright prospects for the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

To begin, let me extend warm congratulations to all Party members on behalf of the CPC Central Committee.

On this special occasion, it is my honor to declare on behalf of the Party and the people that through the continued efforts of the whole Party and the entire nation, we have realized the first centenary goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects.

This means that we have brought about a historic resolution to the problem of absolute poverty in China, and we are now marching in confident strides toward the second centenary goal of building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects.

This is a great and glorious accomplishment for the Chinese nation, for the Chinese people, and for the Communist Party of China!

Comrades and friends,
The Chinese nation is a great nation. With a history of more than 5,000 years, China has made indelible contributions to the progress of human civilization. After the Opium War of 1840, however, China was gradually reduced to a semi-colonial, semi-feudal society and suffered greater ravages than ever before.

The country endured intense humiliation, the people were subjected to great pain, and the Chinese civilization was plunged into darkness.

Since that time, national rejuvenation has been the greatest dream of the Chinese people and the Chinese nation.

To save the nation from peril, the Chinese people put up a courageous fight. As noble-minded patriots sought to pull the nation together, the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom Movement, the Reform Movement of 1898, the Yihetuan Movement, and the Revolution of 1911 rose one after the other, and a variety of plans were devised to ensure national survival, but all of these ended in failure.

China was in urgent need of new ideas to lead the movement to save the nation and a new organization to rally revolutionary forces.

With the salvoes of Russia’s October Revolution in 1917, Marxism-Leninism was brought to China.

Then in 1921, as the Chinese people and the Chinese nation were undergoing a great awakening and Marxism-Leninism was becoming closely integrated with the Chinese workers’ movement, the Communist Party of China was born.

The founding of a communist party in China was an epoch-making event, which profoundly changed the course of Chinese history in modern times, transformed the future of the Chinese people and nation, and altered the landscape of world development.

Since the very day of its founding, the Party has made seeking happiness for the Chinese people and rejuvenation for the Chinese nation its aspiration and mission.

All the struggle, sacrifice, and creation through which the Party has united and led the Chinese people over the past hundred years has been tied together by one ultimate theme—bringing about the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

To realize national rejuvenation, the Party united and led the Chinese people in fighting bloody battles with unyielding determination, achieving great success in the new-democratic revolution.

Through the Northern Expedition, the Agrarian Revolutionary War, the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression, and the War of Liberation, we fought armed counter-revolution with armed revolution, toppling the three mountains of imperialism, feudalism, and bureaucrat-capitalism and establishing the People’s Republic of China, which made the people masters of the country. We thus secured our nation’s independence and liberated our people.

The victory of the new-democratic revolution put an end to China’s history as a semi-colonial, semi-feudal society, to the state of total disunity that existed in old China, and to all the unequal treaties imposed on our country by foreign powers and all the privileges that imperialist powers enjoyed in China. It created the fundamental social conditions for realizing national rejuvenation.

Over the past hundred years, the Party has united and led the Chinese people in writing the most magnificent chapter in the millennia-long history of the Chinese nation, embodying the dauntless spirit that Mao Zedong expressed when he wrote, “Our minds grow stronger for the martyrs’ sacrifice, daring to make the sun and the moon shine in the new sky.”

The great path we have pioneered, the great cause we have undertaken, and the great achievements we have made over the past century will go down in the annals of the development of the Chinese nation and of human civilization.

Comrades and friends,
A hundred years ago, the pioneers of Communism in China established the Communist Party of China and developed the great founding spirit of the Party, which is comprised of the following principles: upholding truth and ideals, staying true to our original aspiration and founding mission, fighting bravely without fear of sacrifice, and remaining loyal to the Party and faithful to the people.

This spirit is the Party’s source of strength.
Over the past hundred years, the Party has carried forward this great founding spirit.

Through its protracted struggles, it has developed a long line of inspiring principles for Chinese Communists and tempered a distinct political character.

As history has kept moving forward, the spirit of the Party has been passed on from generation to generation. We will continue to promote our glorious traditions and sustain our revolutionary legacy, so that the great founding spirit of the Party will always be kept alive and carried forward.

Comrades and friends,
We owe all that we have achieved over the past hundred years to the concerted efforts of the Chinese Communists, the Chinese people, and the Chinese nation.

Chinese Communists, with comrades Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin, and Hu Jintao as their chief representatives, have made tremendous and historic contributions to the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. To them, we express our highest respect.

Let us take this moment to cherish the memory of comrades Mao Zedong, Zhou Enlai, Liu Shaoqi, Zhu De, Deng Xiaoping, Chen Yun, and other veteran revolutionaries who contributed greatly to China’s revolution, construction, and reform, and to the founding, consolidation, and development of the Communist Party of China; let us cherish the memory of the revolutionary martyrs who bravely laid down their lives to establish, defend, and develop the People’s Republic; let us cherish the memory of those who dedicated their lives to reform, opening up, and socialist modernization; and let us cherish the memory of all the men and women who fought tenaciously for national independence and the liberation of the people in modern times.

Their great contributions to our motherland and our nation will be immortalized in the annals of history, and their noble spirit will live on forever in the hearts of the Chinese people.

We must uphold the firm leadership of the Party. China’s success hinges on the Party. The more than 180-year-long modern history of the Chinese nation, the 100-year-long history of the Party, and the more than 70-year-long history of the People’s Republic of China all provide ample evidence that without the Communist Party of China, there would be no new China and no national rejuvenation.

The Party was chosen by history and the people. The leadership of the Party is the defining feature of socialism with Chinese characteristics and constitutes the greatest strength of this system.

It is the foundation and lifeblood of the Party and the country, and the crux upon which the interests and wellbeing of all Chinese people depend.

On the journey ahead, we must uphold the Party’s overall leadership and continue to enhance its leadership.

We must be deeply conscious of the need to maintain political integrity, think in big-picture terms, follow the leadership core, and keep in alignment with the central Party leadership.

We must stay confident in the path, theory, system, and culture of socialism with Chinese characteristics.

We must uphold the core position of the General Secretary on the Party Central Committee and in the Party as a whole, and uphold the Central Committee’s authority and its centralized, unified leadership.

Bearing in mind the country’s most fundamental interests, we must enhance the Party’s capacity to conduct sound, democratic, and law-based governance, and ensure that it fully exerts its core role in providing overall leadership and coordinating the efforts of all sides.

We must unite and lead the Chinese people in working ceaselessly for a better life. This country is its people; the people are the country.

As we have fought to establish and consolidate our leadership over the country, we have in fact been fighting to earn and keep the people’s support. The Party has in the people its roots, its lifeblood, and its source of strength.

The Party has always represented the fundamental interests of all Chinese people; it stands with them through thick and thin and shares a common fate with them.

The Party has no special interests of its own—it has never represented any individual interest group, power group, or privileged stratum.

Any attempt to divide the Party from the Chinese people or to set the people against the Party is bound to fail.

The more than 95 million Party members and the more than 1.4 billion Chinese people will never allow such a scenario to come to pass.

The Chinese nation has fostered a splendid civilization over more than 5,000 years of history.

The Party has also acquired a wealth of experience through its endeavors over the past 100 years and during more than 70 years of governance.

At the same time, we are also eager to learn what lessons we can from the achievements of other cultures, and welcome helpful suggestions and constructive criticism.

We will not, however, accept sanctimonious preaching from those who feel they have the right to lecture us.

The Party and the Chinese people will keep moving confidently forward in broad strides along the path that we have chosen for ourselves, and we will make sure the destiny of China’s development and progress remains firmly in our own hands.

We must accelerate the modernization of national defense and the armed forces. A strong country must have a strong military, as only then can it guarantee the security of the nation.

At the point that it was engaged in violent struggle, the Party came to recognize the irrefutable truth that it must command the gun and build a people’s military of its own. The people’s military has made indelible achievements on behalf of the Party and the people.

It is a strong pillar for safeguarding our socialist country and preserving national dignity, and a powerful force for protecting peace in our region and beyond.

Comrades and friends,
We will stay true to the letter and spirit of the principle of One Country, Two Systems, under which the people of Hong Kong administer Hong Kong, and the people of Macao administer Macao, both with a high degree of autonomy.

We will ensure that the central government exercises overall jurisdiction over Hong Kong and Macao, and implement the legal systems and enforcement mechanisms for the two special administrative regions to safeguard national security.

While protecting China’s sovereignty, security, and development interests, we will ensure social stability in Hong Kong and Macao, and maintain lasting prosperity and stability in the two special administrative regions.

Resolving the Taiwan question and realizing China’s complete reunification is a historic mission and an unshakable commitment of the Communist Party of China. It is also a shared aspiration of all the sons and daughters of the Chinese nation.

We will uphold the one-China principle and the 1992 Consensus, and advance peaceful national reunification.

All of us, compatriots on both sides of the Taiwan Strait, must come together and move forward in unison.

We must take resolute action to utterly defeat any attempt toward “Taiwan independence,” and work together to create a bright future for national rejuvenation.

No one should underestimate the resolve, the will, and the ability of the Chinese people to defend their national sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Comrades and friends,
The future belongs to the young people, and our hopes also rest with them. A century ago, a group of young progressives held aloft the torch of Marxism and searched assiduously in those dark years for ways to rejuvenate the Chinese nation.

Since then, under the banner of the Communist Party of China, generation after generation of young Chinese have devoted their youth to the cause of the Party and the people, and remained in the vanguard of the drive to rejuvenate the nation.

In the new era, our young people should make it their mission to contribute to national rejuvenation and aspire to become more proud, confident, and assured in their identity as Chinese people so that they can live up to the promise of their youth and the expectations of our times, our Party, and our people.

Comrades and friends,
A century ago, at the time of its founding, the Communist Party of China had just over 50 members

. Today, with more than 95 million members in a country of more than 1.4 billion people, it is the largest governing party in the world and enjoys tremendous international influence.

A century ago, China was in decline and withering away in the eyes of the world. Today, the image it presents to the world is one of a thriving nation that is advancing with unstoppable momentum toward rejuvenation.

Over the past century, the Communist Party of China has secured extraordinary historical achievements on behalf of the people.

Today, it is rallying and leading the Chinese people on a new journey toward realizing the second centenary goal.

To all Party members,
The Central Committee calls on every one of you to stay true to our Party’s founding mission and stand firm in your ideals and convictions.

Acting on the purpose of the Party, you should always maintain close ties with the people, empathize and work with them, stand with them through good times and bad, and continue working tirelessly to realize their aspirations for a better life and to bring still greater glory to the Party and the people.

Comrades and friends,
Today, a hundred years on from its founding, the Communist Party of China is still in its prime, and remains as determined as ever to achieve lasting greatness for the Chinese nation.

Looking back on the path we have travelled and forward to the journey that lies ahead, it is certain that with the firm leadership of the Party and the great unity of the Chinese people of all ethnic groups, we will achieve the goal of building a great modern socialist country in all respects and fulfill the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation.

Long live our great, glorious, and correct Party!
Long live our great, glorious, and heroic people!

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