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Gang of Four arrested Gang of Four arrested
by The Ovi Team
2020-10-11 10:24:09
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October 11th 1976; the new chairman of China's Communist Party, Hua Guofeng, ordered the arrest of four leading radicals in Peking. A sign that China is changing political direction following the death last month of Chairman Mao Zedong. The so-called Gang of Four is led by Chairman Mao's widow Jian Qing, and includes Wang Hongwen, Yao Wenyuan, and Zhang Chunqiao.

They were active proponents of the Cultural Revolution instigated ten years ago by Chairman Mao. This was a political and ideological campaign aimed at reviving revolutionary fervour and resulted in enormous social, economic and political upheaval. Ideological cleansing began with attacks by young Red Guards on so-called "intellectuals" to remove "bourgeois" influences. It is believed millions were forced into manual labour, and tens of thousands were executed. Mr Zhang rose up the ranks during the first year of the Cultural Revolution in Shanghai and was until recently chief political commissar of the armed forces. Mr Wang had less power but was regarded a wonderboy - he rose to number three in the party in 1973 while still only in his late thirties, relatively young by Chinese standards. Mr Yao, also a member of the Politburo standing committee, is regarded as dedicated, if not fanatical, in his belief in Maoist ideals of social development.

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