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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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  • September 29, 1976

    Secret Telegram No. 3453/III - From Moscow to Warsaw

    An assessment of the situation in China following Mao's death and a few lines about Soviet policy following this development.

  • October 10, 1976

    Letter from Deng Xiaoping to Hua Guofeng and the CCP Central Committee

    Deng Xiaoping offers his support for Hua Guofeng's appointment as Chairman of the CCP and the Central Military Commission, calling Hua the "most suitable successor to Chairman Mao."

  • October 21, 1976

    Telegram from the Embassy in Beijing, 'Smuggling at North Korean Embassy in Oslo'

    The North Korean Ambassador in Beijing protests that North Korean embassy personnel in Oslo were expelled without consultation of the North Korean government.

  • November 22, 1976

    Hua Guofeng’s Statement to Vietnamese Leaders

  • November 29, 1976

    Cable from Ambassador Wickert to the Foreign Office, 'Benefits of Relationship with China for the Alliance'

    West German Ambassador Wickert reports to the Foreign Office about Chinese foreign policy following Mao Zedong's death.

  • December 14, 1976

    Helmut Peters, 'Note about a Talk in the Department for International Relations of the Central Committee of the CPSU on 13 December 1976'

    GDR and Soviet officials discuss possible trajectories for China following the death of Mao..

  • December 23, 1976

    Secret Telegram No. 3571/IV - From Moscow to Warsaw

    The Secretary Deputy Head of the International Department of the CC CPSU, Oleg Rakhamnin, reports there are no changes in China’s anti-Soviet propaganda

  • January 17, 1977

    Erich Honecker to the Politburo Members of the SED, 'Information about the Situation in China and the Policy of the New Leadership of the PRC'

    This document discusses the shift in political leadership and the instability of the government in the wake of Mao Zedong's death. It also reports on China's economic situation and the beginnings of efforts to modernize the country, as well as foreign relations, especially with the Soviet Union.

  • January 26, 1977

    Note about the Meeting with Comrade Kulik, Division Head in the CPSU CC Department, on Preparation for the Ninth Interkit and the Situation in China on 26 January 1977

    Reviews the first draft of a Soviet report on "China on the Eve of Mao Zedong’s Death," which was to be handed out as joint CPSU-SED material to participants of the Ninth Interkit meeting

  • February 02, 1977

    Telegram 065141 from the the Romanian Embassy in Pyongyang to the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Korean Question

    The Romanian Embassy in Pyongyang reports to the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on developments in Sino-American relations and how they affect the DPRK's diplomatic orientation regarding Korean reunification. Overall, improved Sino-American relations are perceived to stabilize the situation in Asia, although the Korean question is still a complex one.

  • March 02, 1977

    Informational Note from the Conference of Secretaries of Central Committees of Fraternal Parties in Sofia

    Secretaries CC CPSU Konstantin Katushev and B. Ponomarov provide information on the situation in China that is discussed during a confidential meeting of CC secretaries. Addressed are issues related to the fact "that Maoism failed ideologically, caused great harm to the Chinese nation, and did an enormous devastation in the areas of economy, culture, science, and social life," and ways the new Chinese government may behave.

  • March 14, 1977

    Hua Guofeng's Speech at the Central Work Conference

    Hua Guofeng criticizes the Gang of Four, evaluates Deng Xiaoping, comments on demonstrations in Tiananmen Square, and calls for the CCP to "implement Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line."

  • March 16, 1977

    Telegram 065241 from the Romanian Embassy in Pyongyang to the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Soviet Comments on Sino-North Korean Relations

    The Romanian Embassy in Pyongyang reports to the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the development of Sino-North Korean relations, especially regarding their increasing economic cooperation.

  • March 22, 1977

    Vice Chairman Ye Jianying's Speech at the Closing Session of the Central Work Conference

    Ye Jianying praises Mao Zedong, offering a historical overview of his achievements, and says that Hua Guofeng "is raising Chairman Mao’s banner high and continuing his legacy."

  • May 10, 1977

    Letter from Deng Xiaoping to Chairman Hua Guofeng, Vice Chairman Ye Jianying, and the CCP Central Committee

    Deng Xiaoping offers a self-criticism and says that he endorses the policies of Hua Guofeng.

  • May 09, 1977

    Information about Negotiations of the Member of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the CPSU and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the USSR, A. A. Gromyko, with the New Indian leadership (April 25 - 27 of This Year)

    This Soviet report on the results of Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko’s April 1977 visit to India encapsulates Moscow’s first impressions of the new Indian Government. The main issue of the Soviet-Indian talks was the maintenance of the close relations between the two countries. The Desai government promises strict adherence to the 1971 Indo-Soviet Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation. The new Indian leadership also renewed the commitment not to weaponize its nuclear programme. With respect to China, Desai opposes any new initiatives to improve relations with Beijing.

  • May 31, 1977

    Embassy of the GDR in the USSR, Political Department, 'Note about a Meeting with Comrade Kireyev, Deputy Head of the 1st Far Eastern Department of the MID on 24 May 1977'

    A description of Chinese domestic policy, specifically the continuation of Maoism, differences in policy held by political leaders (Hua Guofeng and Ye Jianying), and the campaign against the Gang of Four. China's foreign policy, specifically towards the Soviet Union, USA, Japan, and India is also discussed.

  • June, 1977

    East German Report on the Ninth Interkit Meeting in Berlin, June 1977

    This report was issued after the ninth Interkit meeting in East Berlin, which featured an official Cuban delegation. The document addresses the Chinese question after the death of Mao Zedong. According to this report, the internal disputes inside the Chinese Communist Party persist under the leadership of Deng Xiaoping. The economic problems that China faces are still unresolved. In its foreign relations, China is staying the course by maintaining relations with Western countries, especially with the US. These relations are considered to be detrimental to international détente and directed against the interests of the Soviet Union and the Socialist countries.

  • June, 1977

    East German Report, 'China after Mao Zedong'

    This study gives an account on the domestic and foreign policies of China after the death of Mao Zedong. The first part of the document is dedicated to the domestic policies of the Chinese government. It analyzes the ideological backgrounds of the new leadership as well as the economic situation, while emphasizing unsolved problems in industry and agriculture. A closer look at Beijing's defense spending leads the authors to the conclusion that China is enhancing its military potential and preparing for war.

  • June 10, 1977

    Information on the Chinese Question for the Leaderships of the Fraternal Parties of the Socialist Countries

    A report on China's growing anti-Soviet policies since the death of Mao Zedong, the potential for a Sino-Soviet war, border disputes with the Soviet Union, and Chinese relations with the United States, Western Europe, Japan, Southeast Asia, and the "Third World." They also discuss the Soviet strategy in response to these events.