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September 1, 1971
Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 �ftnfidential- EO 13526 3.3(h)(2) EO 13526 6.2(d) DIRECTORATE OF INTELLIGENCE Intelligence Report LEADERS OF COMMUNIST CHINA IV CHOU En-lai -Confidenhati � CR R 71-5.4 September 1971 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 WARNING This do defense of the United 18, sections 793 and 794. of t Its transmission or reveIth ceipt by an unauthorized f,r6s. tgoomvi � sold 4,11;11,,,Pan Uiona I Title nded. ins to Cr re- ed by law. Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 PREFACE This report is the fourth in a series of in-depth biographic studies of Communist China's top leaders. The series fills a gap in our bio- graphic coverage of China's senior leadership. This report was prepared by the Central Reference Service and was coordinated within CIA as appro- priate. - - CON EN EXclUd downy� declossifica Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL BIOGRAPHIC BRIEF Chou En-lai is a member of the triumvirate ruling in Peking today. Although 73 years old, he is the only one of the top three with sufficient vigor to conduct the day-to-day affairs of the nation. For protocol purposes Chou acts as Chief of State. As Premier, he has run the government since the People's Republic was established in 1949. Foreign affairs, which he conducts with consummate skill, has long been his particular specialty. He is more than just an able administrator and diplo- mat, however. His status has been enhanced since the Cultural Revolution (1966-68), and he now exercises a strong influence on a wide range of domestic as well as foreign policy matters. In 1970 he was put in charge of the task of rebuilding the Communist Party apparatus, thus making him de facto secretary general. In short, Chou serves as Mao Tse-tung's chief executive of the country and of the party. Chou has reached his present position of eminence after decades of struggle and subtle com- promise. He joined the Chinese Communist Party in 1924, but it was not until 1935 that he gave his support to Mao Tse-tung, to whom he has been stead- fastly loyal ever since. Chou has remained in the inner circle of leaders continuously since that time. Chou En-lai is well-known abroad, where he has long been the best salesman of Peking's accomplish- ments and policies. He is known to be a tough, patient negotiator, while his evident talent, charm and flexibility enhance his effectiveness as a diplomat. - - T' T' Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL - vi - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA Member, Standing Committee, Politburo, Chinese Communist Party Central Committee; Premier, State Council, People's Republic of China; Chairman, Chinese People's Political Consultative Congress Chou En-lai, now in his early 70's, is the third-ranking Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leader and the most active member of the inner circle of leader- ship. He is known abroad as China's lead- ing diplomat, but he is her leading statesman as well, having been Premier since 1949 and the senior nonmilitary CCP figure since 1966. Minis- ter of Foreign Affairs for the first decade of the regime, he resigned the post in 1958 but has re- tained a leading role in foreign policy formation and a flim grip on its administration. CHOU En-lai (0719/1869/0171) Chou communicates reasonableness to his hearers, and this, with his charm, has made him the most popular Chinese Communist leader abroad. Chou's popularity at home is also considerable. What he lacks in charisma is partly offset by affability and other more homespun political qualities. He is a proponent of social order, stability and a productive economy. He worked to curb extremism during the Cultural Revolution between 1966 and 1968. Chou also adroitly managed to ride out the more extreme leftist swings of the political pendulum, however, and never openly appeared to lose the confidence of Mao Tse-tung and Lin Piao. Militant Maoists who tried to attack Chou in the spirit of revolutionary criticism found him beyond reach. CONFIDENTIAL GROUP I Excluded from automatic downgrading and deciastification Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Principal Positions Chou is a member of the Politburo of the Ninth Central Committee (CCP-CC) and of its elite Stand- ing Committee. This committee consisted originally of Mao, Lin Piao, Chou, and two lesser lights, ideologist Ch'en Po-ta and security figure K'ang Sheng, but may now consist only of Mao, Lin and Chou. Chou does not sit on the Military Commission of the CCP-CC, headed by Mao and Lin, but his personal influence with its members is undeniable. China's first and only Premier, Chou since 1949 has presided over the civil administration of the country--foreign affairs, civil government at lower levels, economy, security, and, to a degree, military affairs. (In 1967, for example, he gave direct orders to regional military authorities.) Since 1954 Chou has also been chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Congress (CPPCC), a national assembly of persons nominally representative of all occupational sectors, classes and preexisting parties in China. Now a rubber- stamp organization, the CPPCC is historically senior to the National People's Congress (NPC), whose chairman is Chu Te. Relations with Lin and Mao Chou has been outraAked by Lin Piao, Mao's designated successor, since 1966. There is little reason to consider Chou's status as markedly inferior to that of Lin; Mao would scarcely have established Lin in second position without the agreement of Chou, the man whose support Lin needs most. Second rank--that of the heir apparent--is a delicate position, and there is reason to suspect that Chou has for many years deliberately spurned it, believing that he can operate more effectively in the number-three slot. 2 CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 IN STEP WITH MAO. MAO, LIN AND CHOU AT FEBRUARY 1968 CULTURAL REVOLUTION MEETING Chou and Mao are the sole surviving members of the pre-1928 CCP-CC. Between 1928 and January 1934, a period when Mao was excluded from the CCP inner circle, Chou was at times much more influen- tial than Mao. In their post-1928 activities Mao and Chou appeared as two strong leaders who worked often in separate and conflicting spheres, during a particularly trying period. It was between early 1931 and early 1933 that party headquarters moved from Shanghai to Kiangsi. Chou was on the Politburo at most times, working with leaders who were more or less at odds with Mao. Chou's own relationship with Mao was obscure until the historic January 1935 conference of the party at Tsuni, at the start of the retreat to the northwest called the Long March. At this conference Chou gave his full loyalty and public deference to Mao, who emerged for the first time as undisputed leader of the CCP. Since then the two men seem to have had a uniquely personal private relationship in which they have apparently meshed their respective talents. - 3 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Chou has remained firmly established in Mao's small entourage of fully trusted helpers. In foreign affairs, especially, he has spoken with particularly great authority. Personal Stature In the 1949-66 period, Chou was chiefly an administrator, but he emerged from the 1966-69 Cultural Revolution as Mao's chief executive in party as well as governmental affairs. He has entirely reclaimed the reins of governmental con- trol from the encroachments of party administrators after 1956. Within the party he is now more influ- ential than at any time since the early 1930's, and he is currently engaged in the delicate task of putting together a new party apparatus. Chou has proved his administrative competence and political toughness in over 40 years of service, beginning in 1924, when he first joined the CCP as an already experienced activist. He tends to come forward in such times of stress as the present. Early Life Chou En-lai was born around 1898 in Shaohsing, Chekiang Province, of an upper-class family. In 1913 he entered the American-sponsored Nankai Middle School in Tientsin. Graduating in 1917, he, like Mao and others, became involved in the students' political study movements that matured during the May Fourth Movement of 1919 and became the seedbed of the CCP. Chou "studied" in Japan and again in China in 1917-18. From 1917 on he was increasingly pre- occupied with political agitation and apparently ceased serious study. He went to France in late 1920 for a stay that lasted until 1924 and included a visit to Germany. 4 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Political Commissar, 1924-35 Chou joined the CCP in Canton in 1924. His first party assignment was as secretary of the Kwangtung provincial party headquarters. In the Kuomintang (KMT)-CCP united front of 1924-27, he held several important KMT positions and earned Chiang Kai-shek's regard. He was instrumental in placing Communists far and wide within the KMT mili- tary forces as political workers. In 1925-26 Chou served as acting director of the Politi- cal Department of the Whampoa Military Academy, of which the youthful and dynamic Chiang was director. Chou was also secretary there to the Russian adviser, Gen. V. K. Bleucher. In March 1926 Chou was arrested for clandestine Communist activity; although he was re- leased by Chiang's order, his removal from the Whampoa Acad- emy followed. Chiang allowed Chou to continue as an instruc- tor at the KMT's Peasant Movement Training Institute in Canton. Mao Tse-tung, also an effective participant in the united front, served as the institute's last director during May-October 1926. This was their first known working association. AS A YOUNG SOLDIER Chiang also retained Chou in a military cadre train- ing role. At the same time, in the winter of 1926-27 Chou was in charge of all CCP operations within Chiang's National Revolutionary Army, as the campaign against local warlords called the Northern Expedition began. When the united front began break- ing apart and the CCP restructured itself, Chou became 5 CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL head of the newly established Military Department of the CCP around the end of 1926. After leaving Canton, Chou went to Shanghai to aid in the forthcoming seizure of the city by Chiang Kai-shek's forces. After Chiang made his historic break with the Communists in April 1927, Chou was arrested and sentenced to death but either escaped or was released. Chou then made his way to Wuhan, where he joined the Central Committee and Politburo during the Fifth National Congress of the embattled CCP, held in April 1927. As reverses mounted, Chou helped Chu Te plan and execute the unsuccessful Nanchang uprising of 1 August 1927, at which the Red Army was born. Again fleeing, Chou went to the East River area of Kwangtung and subsequently into under- ground activity in Hong Kong and Shanghai. By that time, Chou was a veteran indoctrinator and organizer and had recruited many future leaders. Present associates whom he knew in the years from 1918 to 1924 include party elder Chu Te, economic planner Li Fu-ch'un, and the brilliant general Nieh Jung-chen. Among those who have since suffered purge was Teng Hsiao-p'ing. All five of the aging marshals who in 1971 are Mao's vice chairmen of the CCP Military Commission were in 1926 students or political instructors at Whampoa under Chou's direction. Two of them, Nieh and CCP Military Com- mission Vice Chairman Yeh Chien-ying, are still among China's active leaders. In 1928 Chou went to the USSR, where he was a Chinese delegate to the sixth congresses of both the CCP and the Comintern. He was reelected to the CCP-CC and to the Politburo and was retained as head of the CCP Military Department. He returned to China in 1929, following brief attendance at the cadre school in Moscow then known as Sun Yat-sen University. -6 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Between 1929 and the spring of 1931 Chou worked with the Soviet-influenced Li Li-san group in Shang- hai, which called for "urban uprisings," and with the fragile Ch' en Shao-yii (Wang Ming) apparatus of young Russian-trained cadres. He was not associated with Mao then. In early 1931, however, KMT pressures drove Chou out of Shanghai and into the peasant-oriented Kiangsi environment dominated by Mao Tse-tung. The associa- tion of Chu Te and Mao Tse-tung, dating from 1928, received a form of party sanction at the November 1931 Juichin Conference. Mao became chairman of the Kiangsi Soviet established by the small, beleaguered Communist force rusticating at Juichin, and Chou was elected to the new government's central executive committee. In the years from 1931 to 1935 the Mao-Chou relationship was strained by the impatience of the Moscow-trained student leaders, supported by Chou. Until forced to yield at the Tsuni Conference (January 1935), this faction resisted the guerrilla- minded, defensive views of Mao. Prior to 1935 Chou had held several senior military posts. He had been a member of the Central Revolutionary Military Council since November 1931; political commissar of the First Front Army, succeeding Mao, since August 1932; political com- missar of the entire Red Army--mostly the troops of the First Front Army--since May 1933; and vice chairman of the Central Revolutionary Military Council since January 1934. At Tsuni, however, Chou yielded to Mao the position of Red Army political commissar. Mao became head of the Mili- tary Affairs Committee, with Chou a vice chairman. (The committee and the council were soon merged, and Chou remained a vice chairman into the late 1940's.) United Front Work, 1936-49 Chou's wartime career revolved around the second united front, a Comintern-stimulated frame- work of KMT-CCP cooperation against the Japanese. Chou became the senior CCP negotiator with the Nationalists. - 7 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL The 1936 Sian Incident became the cornerstone of Chou's wartime career. In December 1936 Chiang Kai-shek was kidnaped at Sian, in Shensi Province, by Nationalist-connected military rebels, whom Chou had previously induced to stop fighting on Chiang's behalf against the Communists. Chou and several associates negotiated with the rebels for Chiang's release. This episode led to suspension of KMT operations against the Communists and initiated the negotiation of CCP-KMT collaboration against the Japanese. After early 1938 Chou assumed a permanent role as the chief CCP liaison official with the Nationalist regime in Wuhan and then in Chungking. As a token of their sincerity, the Nationalists readmitted Chou to the KMT and made him a member of the ruling military body of free China. In September 1939, as the Russians and Japanese were terminating their miniwar, Chou went to Moscow where he remained for several months. He returned to Chungking in June 1940 for a 3-year stay. Lin Piao joined Chou in 1942-43 for serious military talks with the Nationalists. Chou returned to Yenan in mid-1943, and in 1944 he began preparatory work aimed at creating a coalition government with the KMT to avert a civil war. US Ambassador Patrick Hurley added his influence to help keep the coalition negotiations going into early 1945. Through him Chou secured Chinese Communist representation by party elder Tung Pi-wu at the April 1945 San Francisco Conference on International Organization, which established the United Nations. These efforts proved impossible, and fighting between Colludunists and Nationalists, never entirely nonexistent, expanded in August 1945, even as Chou and Mao were in Chungking negotiating with Chiang Kai-shek over the shape of postwar China. The negotiations failed and civil war broke out in earnest, leading ultimately to a Communist military victory. Chou returned to Yenan in November 1946 and was occupied with party and military questions. 8 CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL MAO, A JAPANESE FRIEND, AMBASSADOR HURLEY, CHU TE AND CHOU IN YENAN, NOVEMBER 1944 He was with Mao after the Communists evacuated Yenan in March 1947 until Mao went to Peking in 1949. In late March 1949 Chou offered surrender terms to a Nationalist delegation that had sought negotiations. Their rejection ended for him a 25-year career of united front work with the KMT. Despite having originally borne the Soviet trademark, the united front as a political device for cooperation with non-Communists is one of Chou's preferred methods. He learned to use it in the 1920's and worked effectively through it in the 1930's and 1940's to cooperate with, then .use, and finally undermine the Chinese Nationalists. The new regime was founded in 1949 on the basis of a united front of all domestic political groupings and interests, embodied in the CPPCC. This wide- spectrum body legitimized the People's Republic of China, and under a "Common Program," which had been drafted under Chou's direction, served for 5 years as China's only "legislature." 9 CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Chou used the united front concept again in the mid-1950's in his initially promising contacts with "Third World" countries, and again in 1970-71, with the winding down of the Vietnam war, in dealings involving the front groups of Cambodia, Laos and South Vietnam. Premier and Diplomat 1949 On In 1949 Chou oversaw the staffing and establish- ment of the government and the creation of a Foreign Service. On 1 October the new government was inaugurated, and Chou assumed an array of positions suited to his wide-ranging responsibilities--member of the Central People's Government Council (CPGC), Premier of the Government Administration Council (GAC), Minister of Foreign Affairs, Vice Chairman of the Chinese Revolutionary Military Council (RMC), executive board member of the Sino-Soviet Friendship Association, chairman of the Foreign Policy Committee of the Foreign Ministry, and honorary chairman of the Chinese People's Institute of Foreign Affairs. The Premier then began wide-ranging diplomacy pertaining to the forging of trade and economic agreements, to the Korean war, to Indochina, to the status of Taiwan, and to UN relationships. His most important diplomatic service was to support Mao in negotiations with Stalin In early 1950 he concluded a set of Sino-Soviet agreements capped by the 14 Febru- ary Sino-Soviet Treaty of Friendship, Alliance and Mutual Assistance, providing for joint military action to re- pel aggression by Japan or "any state allied with Japan-" From June 1950 to July 1953 he was preoccupied with the Korean war, but he went twice to STALIN, CHOU AND MALENKOV AT PACT SIGNING CEREMONY IN MOSCOW, 1952 - 10 - Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Moscow in that period, once in August 1952 with a military and industrial delegation, and again in March 1953 for Stalin's funeral. Supreme legislative, executive and judicial power was at this time--1949-54--exercised by the CPGC, chaired by Mao personally as Head of State. Chou attended most of its 34 meetings in those years, beside chairing 224 sessions of his own GAC, and thus was an important decisionmaker. In January 1953 Chou was appointed to chair the committee to draft the new 1954 state consti- tution establishing the NPC, a rubber-stamp legisla- ture, alongside the CPPCC, which remained the representative but powerless organ of the entire Chinese people. The new NPC reorganized and civilianized the central government and placed the State Council over the governmental organs. Chou retained both the Premiership and the Foreign Ministry. The CPPCC was enlarged and continued with Chou as its Chairman. (The CPPCC was enlarged again in 1958 and in 1964; it has not met since 1964.) Chou's 1954-55 diplomacy established him on the world scene as a would-be spokesman of the Third World countries in what came to be known as the "Spirit of Bandung." Prior to the April-July 1954 discussions on Korea and Indochina at the Geneva Foreign Ministers Conference, China concluded economic and cultural agreements with Mongolia and North Korea. At the Geneva Conference, Chou made China a signatory to the agreement that ended hostilities in Indochina. Returning via India and Burma, he signed trade agreements and began to publicize the Five Prin- ciples of Coexistence. Because they appeared first in the preamble to the Sino-Indian treaty on trade with Tibet, Chou shares credit of authorship with the late Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru. The principles are mutual respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty; nonaggression; noninter- ference in internal affairs; equality and mutual benefit; and peaceful coexistence in international relations. - 11 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL The principles are still useful to him in arguing China's strength, independence, elevated revolutionary purpose, and self-restraint. His participation in devising this formula required neither inventiveness nor courage. "Peaceful coexistence" was a vogue phrase of the day, already much used by the Soviets. The "principles" were in part an expansion of terms of foreign inter- course previously voiced by Mao before the takeover at a preparatory meeting of the new Political Con- sultative Conference on 15 June 1949: We are willing to discuss with any foreign government the establishment of diplomatic relations on the basis of the principles of equality, mutual benefit, and mutual respect for ter- ritorial integrity and sovereignty, provided it is willing to sever rela- tions with Chinese reactionaries... and adopts an attitude of genuine, and not hypocritical, friendship to- wards People's China. Chou therefore was loyally expressing Mao's policies in this formula and was not taking a personal initiative. In the fall Chou completed the negotiation with Soviet Premier Khrushchev of an end to the last symbols of Russian imperialism, a set of special privileges in Manchuria and Sinkiang, and secured the expansion of Soviet assistance to China. Reacting to US leadership in the formation of the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization in late 1954, five countries called a 29-nation Afro-Asian Con- ference at Bandung in Indonesia for April 1955. Chou turned the conference into a personal triumph, making himself and China the champions of anti- imperialism, independence and neutralism. The Hungarian revolution of 1956 interrupted for Chou an auspicious goodwill tour of South and Southeast Asia. Chou was at first publicly critical of the Soviets ("great-nation chauvinism") before he - 12 - Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL expanded his trip to include visits to Moscow, Warsaw and Budapest. The tone of his statements then changed swiftly to remarks supporting bloc solidarity, papering over any public offence to the Soviets by his earlier words. This unanticipated event nevertheless gave China its first chance to question the political dominance of the USSR in world Communism and to act in the role of a media- tor between the USSR and its satellites. Pressure from Teng Hsiao-p'ing The 1956 CCP constitution, presented by Teng Hsiao-p'ing, was non-Maoist in tone and altered the decisionmaking machinery. Replacing Chou in intraparty influence was the energetic and incisive Teng, then in his fifties but a rising star who became CCP First Secretary and Politburo member in 1954 and General Secretary of the CCP-CC in 1956. A new policymaking organ, the Politburo Standing Committee, replaced the old Secretariat that had previously acted for the Politburo. Its members were those of the Secretariat--Mao, Liu Shao-ch'i, Chou, Chu Te and Ch'en Teng (Lin Piao was added in 1958). In the CCP structure a new, elected administra- tive Secretariat was constituted to interpret policy and to manage the expanding CCP and its evolving relationships with the government. Chou was not a part of the new Secretariat; the new instruments of CCP control were not of his devising and did nothing to conserve his previous influence. One of the quirks of the Eighth Central Committee, elected in 1956, was that Chou could remain the third-ranking member of the Politburo while slipping to fifth place on the new CCP-CC, after Mao, Liu, Teng and Chu Te, because the rankings were based on votes. Liu Shao-ch'i, the CCP chieftain, gained preeminence over Chou and by 1957 was recognized as Mao's probable successor. - 13 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Teng began to get into foreign affairs in the late 1950's. By 1961 he was displacing Chou in various dealings with the North Koreans and espe- cially, though probably not completely, with the Soviets. In December 1963 Teng became Acting Premier while Chou was on a 3-month tour abroad. By then it was beginning to be rumored that Teng was engaging in anti-Chou activity. A seasoned Hong Kong observer noted in May 1964 that Teng, as "one of the hardest of the hardliners" in both domestic and foreign policy, seemed to be moving into new responsibilities and authority in govern- mental affairs. To him, Chou, speaking for flexi- bility and against conceit in foreign affairs, seemed out of contact with Mao's "doctrinarian aides." Resignation from the Foreign Ministry In early February 1958 Chou unexpectedly re- signed from the Foreign Ministry. He retained his leading role in foreign affairs, however, relin- quishing only the formal responsibilities of the post to his old associate Ch'en I. Troubleshooting, 1958-65 The Great Leap Forward of 1958 disrupted economic administration and planning--areas of con- cern to the Premier--but he was guardedly in favor of its goal of speeding up iron and steel produc- tion, and he is now known to favor mass geographic dispersion of industry as well. In the ensuing 3-year slump, Chou picked up much of the burden of repairing the damaged economy and became a spokesman for revisions of priorities and quotas. With the onset of Sino-Soviet difficulties and with the misfiring of domestic campaigns, policy planning became complex, and the momentum of China's essentially anti-Western diplomacy slowed while foreign policy toughened. After 1959 Chou was trying to paper over adverse situations originating in the bitter Sib-Soviet competition for international support. In January and February 1959, in the last glow of Sino-Soviet amity, Chou - 14 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 -C-49.14F+DE attended the 21st CPSU Congress in Moscow and secured from Khrushchev what was to be the last installment of Soviet aid to China. By 1961 China was clearly competing with the USSR in aid offers to other countries. Chou walked out of the 22nd CPSU Congress in October 1961, breaking with Khrushchev, over criticism of Albania, China's client in Europe. In dealings with China's neighbors Chou had in the preceding 2 years forged a number of boundary, friendship and aid treaties and had traveled ex- tensively on goodwill missions. Only with India did accomodation elude him until in October 1962 a brief Chinese punitive campaign ensured borders located in accordance with China's views. Normally prescient, Chou miscalculated in starting out to construct a second diplomatic triumph like that of 1955 during a grand tour of Africa and the Middle East in 1963-64. With Foreign Minister Ch'en I he visited Albania, the United Arab Republic and nine other African countries between December 1963 and February 1964 to promote a second Afro-Asian conference that would exclude the Soviets and strengthen Chinese influence in the Middle East. Unaccountably, Chou defeated his own purpose upon his return from Africa in February when he upset the leaders of the countries he had just visited by announcing that "revolutionary pros- pects throughout Africa are excellent." By fall, after China had exploded her first atomic bomb on 16 October, Chou issued a call for a summit conference of all countries to ban the use of nuclear weapons. In November he went to Moscow, in the aftermath of Khrushchev's ouster, but he accomplished little. Both internal and external affairs turned difficult for China in 1965. The downfall of the Sukarno regime in Indonesia and the possible escalation of the Vietnam war were incontrovertible signs that Chinese foreign policy was at the point of failure. Serious dispute over military plans - 15 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL aggravated intraparty political disagreement, which sharpened in November when an impatient Mao allowed the first blow of the Cultural Revolution to fall on the Peking CCP Municipal Committee. It must be assumed that Chou was close to these developments from his place on the Politburo Standing Committee. Cl-IOU AND SUKARNO, APRIL 1965 Chou made four trips in 1965, all between 22 March and 7 July, keeping his hand in Middle Eastern and South Asian developments. He went to Romania, Algeria, Egypt, Pakistan, Burma and Indonesia in March and April. Later in April he was in Djakarta for the 10th anniversary of the Bandung Conference. In June he went back to Egypt; he was also there during the first 10 days of the Boumediene regime in Algiers. He and his entourage were particularly disappointed that the Afro-Asian conference so long in the planning was slighted by Chou's erstwhile African friends, undercut by the USSR, and finally canceled because of the downfall of the planned host government, Ben Bella's Algerian regime. Chaos and Reconstruction, 1966-69 The last efforts of the CCP machine of Liu Shao-ch'i and Teng Hsiao-p'ing to take the inita- tive in Cultural Revolution campaigning were unsuccessful in the spring of 1966. Liu, Teng and the CCP Secretariat were effectively eliminated by August, leaving the People's Liberation Army - 16 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL (PLA) and the Maoists in control. The State Council was also dismantled as though it were a CCP organ, but Chou was not blamed for its deficiencies. Chou stood with Mao from the start of the Cultural Revolution, resisting Liu and Teng and collaborating with Lin Piao. He maintained his options with the ultraleftists who thought they were obeying Mao, and his reported conflicts with Chiang Ch'ing (Mao's wife) never came to the point of a break. Chiang, for example, broke with the ultraleftist May 16 Group in September 1967 to defend Chou against the group's attempt to seize the reins of foreign policy. Chou's rela- tions with leftists were nonetheless periodically precarious. In July 1966, well before the Red Guards burst forth, Chou helped guide and modulate revolutionary student activity. The August Central Committee plenum confi/med him, again, in third place behind Mao and Lin Piao. Chou attended all eight of the mass rallies held in Peking between 18 August and 25 November and spoke at three. Speeches in which he urged "production first" aroused the anger of certain Red Guards, and numerous central organs under his authority were attacked in late 1966. WITH CHIANG CHtING (MAO'S WIFE) AT A PEKING RALLY IN APRIL 1967 As an unofficial adviser to the Central Cultural Revolution Group headed by Ch'en Po-ta and Chiang Ch'ing, and as Premier, Chou began in January 1967 to mediate between the myriad factions that emerged everywhere to participate in setting up "revolu- tionary" gOvernment. With varying degrees of success he defended many leaders, including Vice � 17 � CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Premiers Li Hsien-nien, Li Fu-ch'un, Ch'en I and Hsieh Fu-chih, but he was not able to prevent many demotions and forced retirements. Chou himself was publicly attacked; one wall poster accused him of protecting Vice Premier Li Hsien-nien and demanded (metaphorically) that Chou be "burned alive." Chou could offer placatory self-criticism but he could also turn admonitory; in April he bluntly said that criticism of himself was injudicious. By the end of April Chou had assumed direct management of the State Council staff offices for foreign affairs, finance and trade, and agriculture and forestry, as their leadership came under political attack. Serious trouble developed in Canton, and Chou went there in April, ostensibly to oversee prepara- tions for the opening of the Canton Trade Fair. He also lent support to the hard-pressed Huang Yung- sheng, commander of the Canton Military Region, who was beset by youths arriving from Peking to help the local Red Guard factions. On 14 July Chou was in Wuhan, since February a scene of bloody factional struggles, which were strangling that key industrial center. Having attempted to secure agreement on a solution autho- rized by Peking, he left on the same day and was followed in Wuhan by two Peking emissaries. They continued the attempt to convey what a Japanese reporter called Chou En-lai's four-part instructions One of those instructions censured a powerful force that on 20 July provocatively arrested the emissaries, with the support of the Wuhan military Region com- mander. Chou flew back to Wuhan on the same day, dramatically replaying his 1936 role in Chiang Kai-shek's kidnaping, to issue the orders that secured the release of the detainees. The event shocked the Peking leadership and became a Cultural Revolution turning point, leading first to more turbulence and then to suppression of disorder. - 18 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 -CONFIDE Chou never went to Shanghai, Mao's preserve, but he kept his hand in the Canton situation. He directed negotiations in Peking with provincial groups until in November a "preparatory group" for the Kwangtung Provincial Revolutionary Committee could finally be formed. Many other provincial revolutionary factions also utilized Chou's media- tion in 1967-68. The burden on him eased only when policy became less permissive in the fall of 1967 and the provincial factions began to get into line. A natural community of concern existed between Chou and the regional military commanders to see order reestablished, even if there were no visible bonds of personal commitment as a group. Through his ceaseless activity Chou seemed at times to have become the chief executive officer of the Cultural Revolution to the extent of even ordering military actions. The year 1968 became one of intense governmental reconstruction. Many decisions on economic matters, foreign policy and administrative rebuilding fell to Chou, the indis- pensable man. His third-ranking position was under- scored by the Ninth Party Congress in April 1969, which ended the anti-CCP phase of the Cultural Revolution. After the congress, K'ang Sheng was charged with the job of rebuilding the shattered party apparatus. He failed to do so, and in 1970 the task was given to Chou. During the Cultural Revolution, Red Guard "diplomacy" seriously injured Peking's foreign relations. Diplomacy was in abeyance following the recall to China of all but one Ambassador early in 1967. Foreign delegations continued to arrive, however, and Chou made time to meet them and ex- plain events to them. In August 1967 Red Guards disrupted the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and went to such extremes as burning the British Mission. The latter event shocked even some radicals, and thereafter Chou managed to protect the integrity of the foreign affairs establishment fairly well from further attack. - 19 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Recent Activity in Domestic Affairs Since early 1970 there has been continuing pressure on the May 16 Group, a radical group of ultraleftists that flourished in 1967 and made Chou their main target. Official pressure on this group matured into an unpublicized but intense campaign, and a principal figure of the group, Yao Teng-shan was supposedly sentenced to death in June 1971. Chou's position seemed firm in January 1971, when he was reported to be closely involved in can- didate selection for the long anticipated National People's Congress. Serious controversy over policy issues continues, but the informal community of interest, whether or not it can or should be called an alliance, continues between Chou and the regional military commanders and is the present basis of internal stability. Recent Activity in Foreign Affairs Chou returned the first group of Ambassadors to overseas assignments in May 1969. He left China for the first time in 3 years when he went to Hanoi in early September for the funeral of Ho Chi Minh. CONFERRING WITH KOSYGIN ON BORDER TALKS, 1969 - 20 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL Next, conferring in Peking, Chou and Premier Kosygin set up Sino-Soviet border talks that began in Octo- ber. In January 1970 Chou resumed contacts with the United States in Warsaw after a 2-year interruption, and in March he made a 3-day visit to North Korea to terminate a long period of coolness in Sino-North Korean relations. Chou's 1971 diplomacy began with a focus on Indochina and has gone forward to direct dealings with the United States on a broad range of outstanding issues, including UN representation. Characteris- tically, Chou played the leading role in the first "people's diplomacy" initiative toward the United States in April 1971 by allowing an American table tennis team and accompanying journalists into China. Contacts with the US Government culminated in the visit of presidential adviser Dr. Henry Kissinger to Peking in July 1971 for talks with Chou. One direct result of Kissinger's visit was an invitation ex- tended by Chou to President Nixon to visit China before May 1972. In June Chou achieved some harmonization of party and state relationships between China and Romania when Premier Ceausescu visited China for 8 days. Chou made lavish efforts to erase the memory of impatient behavior that, untypically, had marked a visit he made to Bucharest in 1966. Position in Mid-1971 In May 1971 Chou began his third year of party- state administration under the Ninth Party Congress mandate. At hcae he has begun to defuse some of the political and economic issues that beset the regime. His leadership in foreign affairs appears to have launched a new phase of conciliatory, highly visible diplomacy around the world. He seems to be resuming personal relations with the United States of the type he had in the Chungking period (World War II). The pattern of the Premier's present activity shows that he is approaching policy formation and planning by degrees and systematically. As he - 21 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 CONFIDENTIAL works issues into potentially soluble forms, the probability is that he is preparing to present highly persuasive and moderately impressive foreign and domestic policy packages to the NPC, whenever the hard-fought delegate selection process is finished and the time is propitious. Style Chou's purposes, to foreigners, seem to combine respect for the CCP with loyalty to Mao and with ordinary patriotism. Chou gets along well with almost everyone and is an effective mouthpiece for Chinese Communist policies at home and abroad by being pleasant, realistic and undoqmatic. The people who have learned to take Chou at his word include those who discounted his warnings that China night enter the Korean war under certain circumstances and those in India who discounted China's readiness to attack the Indian Army in 1962. - 22 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Family Teng Ying-ch'ao, Chou's wife, was born in 1903. She has been one of the top women Communists since she joined the CCP in 1925, the year in which they married. - 23 - CONFIDENTIAL Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140 oufideutia Approved for Release: 2022/02/10 006928140