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Digital Archive International History Declassified

September 29, 1962

RECORD OF CONVERSATION FROM CHAIRMAN MAO AND COMRADE JIANG QING’S RECEPTION OF MME. HARTINI SUKARNO

This document was made possible with support from the Henry Luce Foundation

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    Mao Zedong and Mme. Hartini Sukarno discuss developments in Indonesia, including the role of Chinese military assistance in putting down rebellions, as well as relations among the Afro-Asian nations.
    "Record of Conversation from Chairman Mao and Comrade Jiang Qing’s Reception of Mme. Hartini Sukarno ," September 29, 1962, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 105-01793-06, 57-64. Translated by David Cowhig. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/117917
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Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Record of Conversation from Chairman Mao and Comrade Jiang Qing’s Reception of Mme. Hartini Sukarno

(not reviewed by the Chairman)

Time: September 29, 1962, 1 to 1:50 PM

Venue: Peking Hall, Great Hall of the People

Chinese side attendees: Comrade Wang Guangmei, Comrade Deng Yingchao, Vice Premier Chen Yi, Comrade Zhang Wei, Vice Minister Huang Zhen, Comrade Zhu Lin, Comrade Jie Mei, and Vice Minister Ge Buhai.

Indonesian side attendees: Ambassador and Mrs. Sukarni

Interpreter: Chen Lishui

Notetaker: Lin Xiaoyu

Hartini Sukarno: Thank you, Chairman, for taking the time to meet me.

Chairman Mao: I very much welcome your visit.

Hartini Sukarno: The Chairman is very busy. I know that you have been busy convening the Eighth Plenary Session of the Eighth Central Committee.

Wang Guangmei: We saw the communiqué of the Tenth Plenary Session of the Eighth Central Committee on the plane coming from Hangzhou to Beijing today, and read in the foreign affairs part of it about the visit of Mme. Sukarno.

Chairman Mao: Indonesia is a good friend of China and China is also a good friend of Indonesia. In Asia, Africa and Latin America. We have a lot of friends.

Hartini Sukarno: Sukarno asks me to pay his respects to the Chairman and to his wife.

Chairman Mao: Thank you.

Jiang Qing: Is President Sukarno well? Please give him my regards.

Chairman Mao: Pass along my greetings to him. I wish him health and longevity, that his work goes smoothly and that he overcome all difficulties. Our country has difficulties and your country also has difficulties. Enemies tried to assassinate President Sukarno but they failed. However, I hope that President Sukarno will realize that he must pay attention to that. When he came to Beijing last time, I also told him that I should pay attention to that.

Ambassador Sukarni [Kartodiwirjo]: Later, what the Chairman predicted did really happen.

Chairman Mao: Yes, it really did happen! When Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana came, I also told him to pay attention to that. Then it happened after he got back home. He immediately removed the British officer. There have been two assassination attempts recently but they both failed.

Hartini Sukarno: That is why President Sukarno asked me to convey his respect, greetings and gratitude to Chairman and his wife.

Chairman Mao: You are doing very well. You won a victory over the imperialists and so now you can recover West Irian. The Asian Games were done very well. You are not afraid of offending the Chiang Kai-shek clique and Israel. The Indian representative Guru Dutt Sondhi disrupted the Asian Games. You opposed them and protested.

Hartini Sukarno: We also destroyed part of the Indian Embassy.

Chairman Mao: You destroyed a part of the Indian Embassy and went to the hotel to catch Sondhi, but Sondhi hid in a hotel managed by Americans and fled at night.

Hartini Sukarno: At the Indian shops closed then. They were afraid.

Chairman Mao: The Indian nation is good and the Indian people are good. But some people in the Indian government are not good. They collaborate with imperialism and want to destroy the Asian Games and to stir up trouble along the Sino-Indian border. Now India has a bad relationship with its neighboring countries. Nearly all of its neighbors – China, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Nepal, Ceylon, Pakistan and Indonesia will not follow its lead. Only Thailand and Ngô Đình Diệm of south Vietnam follow the United States in going along with India. So we are the most anti-imperialist.

Most of the world’s anti-imperialists are now in Asia, Africa and Latin America. These three continents account for most of the world's population. Most of the people in Europe, North America, and Australia are good; only a few of them are bad. In our countries, only a few percent of the people disapprove of us.

Hartini Sukarno: In our own country too, perhaps one or two percent do not approve of us.

Chairman Mao: It might be four or five percent. Our country is big so that comes to many people. If we take the proportion at 3 percent, they come to about 20 million people. Where have you visited recently?

Hartini Sukarno: I visited Vietnam and Cambodia before coming to China.

Ambassador Sukarni: Before that, she also visited Mecca, Romania, Poland and the Soviet Union.

Chairman Mao: She visited the socialist countries.

Hartini Sukarno: Yes, and she is making her longest visit in China.

Jiang Qing: Please stay a few more days.

Hartini Sukarno: Thank you, if I get the chance, I will come again and stay longer in China.

Ambassador Sukarni: The Romanian president will soon visit Indonesia, so Mme. Sukarno needs to go back to attend the welcoming ceremony.

Chairman Mao: Did you come to Indonesia by air this time?

Hartini Sukarno: Yes.

Chairman Mao: Did you go through Hong Kong?

Ambassador Sukarni: When the plane goes back, the plane has to go through Hong Kong, to be refueled. It is scheduled to arrive in Jakarta at 1 pm the same day.

Chairman Mao: Pay attention to security when passing through Hong Kong.

Chen Yi: You have offended the Chiang Kai-shek clique so they want to hurt you.

Chairman Mao: This is not a problem with the British but with the Chiang Kai-shek clique.

Ambassador Sukarni: I received a telegram from President Sukarno today, instructing me that in taking the old route through Hong Kong we are to only refuel. We should not stay over and not leave the airport. He instructed me to accompany her to the airport because it is reported that the situation is not good.

Chairman Mao: Who will escort her from our side?

Chen Yi: Minister Huang Zhen will accompany her to Guangzhou.

Chairman Mao: Vice Minister Huang Zhen should accompany her all the way to Jakarta.

Hartini Sukarno: Thank you, in fact, we should make this request to the chairman.

Chairman Mao: Huang Zhen is an Indonesian.

Hartini Sukarno: (laughs) Yes!

Chairman Mao: (Aside to Huang Zhen) You have lived in Indonesia for several years.

Wang Guangmei: (Aside to Chairman Mao, introducing Jie Mei) She is the wife of our current ambassador to Indonesia, Yao Zhongming. She gave birth to a boy in Indonesia, and named him Little West Irian. Mme. Sukarno hopes that she will give birth to a girl whom she will name Taiwan.

Hartini Sukarno: The Chairman is very busy. I want to say goodbye to the chairman.

Chairman Mao: This has been too short, you should stay a while longer.

What does “Nasakom” mean?

Huang Zhen: Nasakom refers to the three major trends of nationalism, religion and communism. These three major trends represent the three important forces in Indonesia.

Chen Yi: Ambassador Sukarni is a member of Indonesia’s Aam Aadmi Party. Now he is an ambassador but he is still influential in the Aam Aadmi Party.

Ambassador Sukarni: The Marshal knows Indonesia very well.

Chairman Mao: President Sukarno and the Indonesian government advocate the cooperation of the three major forces. That way they are very powerful. We are very pleased to hear about that. Do the Masyumi Party and the Socialist Party still exist?

Ambassador Sukarni: No, not at all.

Hartini Sukarno: They are almost gone. They are banned.

Huang Zhen: Because they collude with imperialism and engage in subversive activities.

Ambassador Sukarni: They are also rebelled.

Chairman Mao: The Indonesian rebellion has been suppressed. This is a very good thing. We were very worried at the time. The situation was very tense. The rebellion began in 1957 and did not conclude until 1959. At the time, the rebel group established a government in Sumatra and occupied most of the island.

Ambassador Sukarni: President Sukarno will never forget how China provided weapons and assistance to help suppress the rebellion in Indonesia.

Chairman Mao: We did very little.

Ambassador Sukarni: At that time, President Sukarno attached great importance and personally asked Ambassador Huang Zhen to talk about this issue.

Chairman Mao: This is as it should be. You oppose imperialism and its running dogs. We should help. This is our duty. You have the right to accept this kind of help. Is your country doing better now?! Is there a shortage of Islamist rebels?!

Ambassador Sukarni: There are still some Islamist rebels. Their leader, Kartosuwirjo, has been arrested and executed. Now, Indonesia's main difficulties are food and clothing.

Hartini Sukarno: Indonesia's past finances were mainly devoted to the West Irian struggle. Now that the West Irian problem has been solved, we can concentrate on solving the problems of food and clothing.

Ambassador Sukarni: The West Irian problem can only be said to be half-solved. Now Indonesia has become aware of the imperialism plots.

Chairman Mao: The United States is increasing its investment and Dutch capital has not yet been withdrawn. You won your first victory; now you can prepare for your third and fourth victories. This is a political issue. We can discuss economic issues later.

Ambassador Sukarni: The United States also wants to occupy Biak Island. Now that the West Irian issue has settled, the Dutch flag will be lowered there on October 1.

Chairman Mao: How was it solved? Who will West Irian belong to?

Hartini Sukarno: The United Nations flag will be lowered after May 1st of next year. Only the Indonesian flag will be left.

Ambassador Sukarni: The Indonesian flag will be raised on January 1 next year. That is to say, on October 1st, the Dutch flag was lowered and the United Nations flag was raised. On January 1st, the Indonesian flag will rise and coexist with the United Nations flag. Only the Indonesian flag will fly there after May 1 next year. Those are the three steps.

Chairman Mao: You are doing it in three steps. We agree. We support you.

Indonesia has proposed convening a conference of Asian and African countries. How is that going?

Ambassador Sukarni: The preparatory meeting for the second Asian-African Conference will be held at the end of this year, in November or December.

Chairman Mao: Have there been any problems?

Ambassador Sukarni: The difficulties are mostly with India.

Chairman Mao: What if India does not participate?

Hartini Sukarno: It doesn't matter if India doesn’t participate. Already twenty-nine countries have agreed to participate.

Ambassador Sukarni: Marshal Chen Yi is also going to participate. He will attend with his wife.

Chen Yi: I will go if the Chairman approves it. I heard that India proposed plans to sabotage the meeting and says that it should be held in Cairo.

Chairman Mao: Mr. Ali, the former prime minister, has visited China. He was the chief representative of Indonesia in the United Nations. He is now the leader of the Indonesian Nationalist Party. He also agreed to hold the second Asian-African conference.

Wang Guangmei: The Indonesian Nationalist Party has now been renamed the National Party.

Huang Zhen: Before I left Indonesia, Mr. Ali suggested to me that the name of the Taiwan Nationalist Party stinks. In order to avoid misunderstanding, we hope that our Party will not be called the Nationalist Party. Therefore, in China we call it the Indonesian National Party.

Chairman Mao: The Indonesian Nationalist Party changed its name to the National Party. How is the original text called the law?

Wang Guangmei: The original text has not changed, is called NATIONALIST.

Huang Zhen: Only the translated Chinese name was changed to the National Party.

Chairman Mao: NATIONALIST [sic; Mao said this in English], National Party. Perhaps all three major political parties in Indonesia favor of Sukarno’s initiative. Sukarno is going to hold the second Asian-African conference, and we are very much in favor. It has been many years since the first Asian-African conference. It has been seven years since 1955 to 1962. The Second Asian-African conference has not been convened yet mostly because of Indian obstruction. You (refer to Sukarno) are right, it doesn’t matter if India is not there!

Hartini Sukarno: We invited India. If they don’t come, that will just be that.

Chairman Mao: They will come so as not to be isolated.

Ambassador Sukarni: Does the Chairman have any good wishes that Mme. Sukarno can bring to President Sukarno?

Chairman Mao: We support you. That is one. Second, I hope you take care of your health. Again, be vigilant against hidden enemies. He is a brave soldier, the enemy wants to harm him, but he has escaped danger twice.

Hartini Sukarno: Actually six times.

Chairman Mao: So many times! If your security and protection is good, you can stop your hidden enemies.

Hartini Sukarno: Thank you, the Chairman. You are very busy, I have been bothering you for a long while. I will say farewell to the Chairman and his wife now. Thank you very much.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs Office

October 25, 1962