Red China: The Self-Bound Gulliver

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some areas, scarce in others. So it is with items such as cloth. Last year, when the cloth ration in Canton was only 1½ feet per person annually, it was 7 feet in Tsinan. To buy commodities, workers needed coupons as well as money: one coupon, plus the necessary cash price, got a small cooking pot. Each citizen also received a ticket for two bars of toilet soap a year, and one of laundry soap per month, and there were ration cards for cooking oil, flour, sugar and sweets. The meat ration in Tsinan is currently three ounces a month, and grain is 37 pounds for men doing "medium-heavy" work. (Most towns also have free markets, at which food is available off ration at high prices.) Says Belhomme: "People are not hungry today, but they are definitely not full."

The grimness and scarcity of life in China is sometimes brightened by exploits testifying to the ingenuity and dogged work of its citizens. Canada's Dr. Wilder Penfield, one of the world's top neurosurgeons, returned last week from Red China and told of a University of Shanghai medical team that built a heart-lung machine from scratch in 18 months. When they tested it with dogs, the animals died of air bubbles in the heart. The Chinese went back to work, guided only by articles in medical journals, and three years later came up with a far better machine which has now been used in 60 successful open-heart surgical cases.

Planned Blessings. China's future depends largely upon the pillars of the party: the army and the students. From all three must come the skills and dedi cation needed to deal with the staggering problems posed by overpopulation and underproduction. At the top of the pyramid is Chairman Mao Tse-tung, whom the party acknowledges to be omnipotent and incapable of mistakes. The people are endlessly told that Mao is the sun, the lodestar, the living Buddha, and he is said to be far greater "than the empty, hypocritical and negative Jesus Christ." Peasants are taught to sing:

The sun is rising in the east.

China has brought forth a Mao Tsetimg.

He plans blessings for the people.

Aiyayao, he is the peoples' great savior!

Whatever the propaganda, Mao has worked for more than 30 years with the other six members of the Standing Committee of the 19-man Politburo without an internal bloodbath—a record unmatched by any other modern tyranny, Communist or Fascist. Among this band of brothers, dissent is possible—you may lose your job but not your head. Economic Chief Chen Yun opposed Mao's Great Leap and it only cost him a temporary fall from power. The other five committeemen are Heir Apparent Liu Shao-chi (TIME, Oct. 12, 1959), Premier Chou En-lai (TIME, May 10, 1954), Defense Minister Lin Piao, Vice Premier Teng Hsiao-ping and Congress Chairman Chu Teh.

Unhappy Generals. The People's Liberation Army—now 2,600,000 strong—is by far the most impressive product of Red China, but there is evidence of dissatisfaction at the top and bottom of the army. Among the generals, those having a guerrilla mentality conflict with the professionals, who argue that to obtain the supplies needed by a modern army, China must cooperate closely with the Soviet Union. Defense Minister Peng Teh-huai, leading spokesman for the professionals, was dismissed from his post in 1959, but remains a member of the

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