In China, there was a man like this:
He was an orphan. Before he was born, his father passed away before his time, when he was nine, his mother, who he depended on for his survival, also passed away, the victim of a disease borne out of poverty.
The worst of luck, when he was looking to educate himself in Huxi, he caught cholera and almost died.
He finished his education, paying for it through scholarships, and in 1947, as a Huxi resident, was admitted into Qinghua university. In Qinghua he was the president of the student union.
He joined the Chinese Communist Party in 1949, and before he even graduated started working. He was famously talented.
In 1951 Zhu Róngji, after graduating from Qinghua university, was sent to the North-East, to take up the post of the Deputy of the North East People’s Department of Industry Planning Office. In 1952 he took part in founding of the National Planning Council. He was known as the young cadre with the greatest potential.
In 1958 he, with stubborn heart and forthright character, committed a “crime of words” and was branded as right-wing. From that point he began what became twenty years of “from hardship, aspiration, from labour, strength, from hunger, strength”. From when he was thirty until when he was fifty, twenty of his most golden years flowed away like the waters of an eastward flowing river, never to return!
In 1983 China’s first “former right-winger” to have ever held a deputy department level post was released, and he took up the post of Deputy of the National Economic Commission, he, whose major had been electrical manufacturing, he became the greatest economic expert after Deng Xiaoping in Chinese political circles. Later he also became the head of the People’s Bank of China. He was even Dean of Qinghua [aka Tsinghua] University’s Faculty of Economics for 17 years, tutoring PhD students.
He was an eighteenth generation descendant of Ming Taizu (the founder of the Ming Dynasty), and in 1998 he became Premier of the People’s Republic of China.
He was called Zhu Rongji, a name that is being gradually forgotten.
The common people said that as long as he was suppressing corruption, they weren’t afraid of death. Only he dared to reform the system, because of him they weren’t afraid of causing offence.
Because the law was heavy handed in its implementation when he was in power, he offended many influential people. After he retired, the central government looked after him well. He wanted to lead a normal life, but it wasn’t to be.
Perhaps you remember in the live broadcast of the national day celebrations, that one second during the military parade, that fleeting moment. If there is a force that is trying to get us to forget him, we should do something worthy for him.
These are some quotes from Zhu Rongji:
At the end of 1996, Zhu Rongji who was at the time Vice Premier of the State Council was watching the play “Shangyang”, and was moved to tears and praised it, saying, “Revolutionaries of history are the backbone of the people. The bravery of “Shangyang” turned the tide towards reformation, obstinate naysayers were crushed under its wheels.”
On the 24th of March 1998 Zhu Rongji hosted the first complete assembly of the National Council, and gave five requirements: Remember that you are servants of the people; with all your heart and mind work in service of the people; fulfill your duties carefully, always daring to tell the truth; deal with the running of the government seriously, never being afraid to offend people; be fair and honest, punish corruption harshly; study diligently and work hard; Establishing a set of rules: on-the-spot investigations should be undertaken lightly and without extravagance; the number of meetings should be cut to a minimum, time and manpower should be reduced; remuneration should be reduce, centralised strength and research should be used to take care of serious problems.
On August 9 1998, Zhu Rongji urgently flew to the site of the burst dyke at Jiujiang in Jiangxi, which made him suddenly furious, he immediately reproached the person in charge: “Didn’t you say it was secure? Who knew that the interior of the dam was Tofu dregs? Work like this must be carefully done from day one, those in charge of design, construction and supervised must be investigated. A case involving human lives is of supreme importance. A landmark event, a great cause of a thousand years, has been undone because of such poor construction, such crap construction. How could corruption go so far? History can’t be bullied!” Then, as he turned away after speaking with the flood relief workers, he walked while wiping his tears from the corners of his eyes.
In 1998, Zhu Rongji, during an important meeting, strongly and resonantly gave an enlightening speech, saying “What is clear is that the Central Committee is resolute in fighting corruption. Unless this problem is fixed, China can’t prosper. In fighting corruption we must ‘first fight the tiger, then the wolf’ [attack the strongest targets before the weaker]. We mustn’t go easy on the ‘tigers’; I’ve prepared 100 coffins here, 99 are for corrupt officials, 1 is for me, put simply it’s something I’ll take to the grave, my repayment is the development of a stable national government and the trust of the common people.”
On March 19 1998: “No matter if it’s earth shattering thunder or a bottomless chasm ahead of me, I’ll press on, dutybound, entirely devoted, to the end of my days.”
In 2001, in the ceremony marking his resignation as Dean, he said, “There was a time when I was expelled from the party for twenty years (1958 – 1978), but during that time, I didn’t give up my beliefs, I didn’t forget what I learned at Qinghua, and didn’t do anything that would give me a bad conscience. Today I’m leaving Qinghua, I won’t come back often, in reality I won’t come back. But please don’t worry everyone, my heart will always be at Qinghua. I’ll be gratified at every Qinghua success, worry about every Qinghua difficulty, and point out every Qinghua inadequacy. Goodbye, I’ll always be a Qinghua man!”
With regard to the fact that he only served one term, we are powerless.
With regard to Premier Zhu’s oppression, we are powerless.
With regard to the third of a frame that was given to him during the broadcast of the military parade [on 2009 National Day] we can only be angry.
Indeed, we can’t change any of this.
In his old age we can send him a thousand good wishes.
Please leave a “best wishes Premier Zhu”.
Let’s show our respect for Premier Zhu.
There are over 64 pages or ~6400 responses to this post.
Comments from Mop:
In this crazy world we miss a good premier.
I like strong leaders.
Best wishes Premier Zhu.
He was just someone who wanted to make a difference.
He just wanted to stop the wheels of destiny.
He was just an ordinary person.
Best wishes Premier Zhu.
My country always has good Premiers, but as for Presidents…
I definitely support old Zhu.
Our love for Premier Zhu isn’t just spoken!
Every Chinese with a conscience must remember!
We show our respect for Premier Zhu!
Firstly, I really respect Zhu Rongji.
The emotions of Chinese people is too complicated, you could say that he was sacrificed, his achievements were basically nothing special, because off his lack of support, the pace of the reformation was too slow, if he was given another five years, I’m sure that his achievements would be the same as the founding of the country!
Premier Zhu… the people will always miss you!
Your brilliance, and unyielding character… the people’s servant.
Premier Zhu doesn’t understand today’s harmonious society.
Best wishes Premier Wen.
Best wishes to our great Premier!
Best wishes Premier Zhu.
Our most competent Premier!
I wish Premier Zhu good health.
Looking back on the history of the governance of this country, there is only Zhou (Enlai), Zhu (Rongji) and Wen (Jiabao)!
Best wishes Premier Zhu.
Only when people are living in misery do they prostrate themselves for politicians that aren’t corrupt. China! The government! I’ll say no more! Best wishes Premier Zhu.
Why did such an incorruptible politician, such a good premier only serve one term…