The communist dictatorship ruling over mainland China has a new centrally planned plot in the works, a controversial scheme that seeks to force hundreds of millions of farmers from rural areas to regime-dominated mega-cities being built across the nation. According to news reports, much of the land is being seized by force as the Chinese Communist Party works fiendishly to pack people into shoddy cookie-cutter buildings and cities sprouting up all over the country.
More than a few analysts, of course, have cited former Chinese dictator Mao Tse Tung’s central planning schemes, which killed tens of millions of innocent people through starvation and even outright murder. While the late communist tyrant was obsessed with forcing “industrialization” on China from the top down, the regime’s newest crop of autocrats is similarly determined to foist what is dubbed “urbanization” on the Chinese.
It appears increasingly clear that the vast rural population will be forced to submit and “urbanize” whether they like it or not — all for their own benefit, of course, the regime and its propagandists insist. The latest development, though, follows decades of centrally planned disasters triggered by Communist Party plans to redesign society.
Among the worst was the murderous “Cultural Revolution,” a program started by mass-murderer Mao designed to centralize and solidify communist control by attacking traditions, vestiges of the market system, and especially dissidents. Another tragedy brought about by the regime's scheming: the so-called “Great Leap Forward,” which was supposed to modernize the country away from its agricultural roots but actually led to the “Great Chinese Famine” and tens of millions dead.
According to a report in the New York Times, the latest communist plan aims to relocate some 250 million rural people into urban areas over the next 12 years. The U.K. Telegraph, meanwhile, reported separately that around 400 million Chinese from the countryside were in the regime’s crosshairs to be corralled into sprawling new centrally planned cities being erected all across China. Bloomberg Businessweek said about half of China’s rural population of 650 million would be relocated by “nudging, urging, and sometimes forcing farmers and their families to settle in China’s cities.”
News reports about the effort in establishment publications have largely been focusing on relatively trivial potential problems stemming from the scheme: unemployment, pollution, slums, pensions, and other matters. Most of them contain quotes from people celebrating their new lives in regime-run cities, though a few quote people who were forcibly evicted. However, buried deep within the articles, the truth about what is really going on becomes more apparent.
For example, about half-way into the recent report by the New York Times, which has long been criticized for sugar-coating or even concealing communist atrocities, readers find out that the plan will essentially be implemented at the barrel of a gun. “Efforts have been made to improve the attractiveness of urban life, but the farmers caught up in the programs typically have no choice but to leave their land,” the paper admits.
Of course, the dictatorship’s “constitution” states that all land in China is owned collectively — in other words, the regime calls the shots and property rights, at least as Americans know them, are not a barrier to the grand scheme. However, as Beijing and its lower-level minions across the country work to kick farmers off the land they farm, unrest is growing, and conflicts between authorities and farmers are becoming increasingly frequent.
In a 2011 survey cited in various media reports, a U.S.-based organization known as Landesa Rural Development Institute found that almost 45 percent of Chinese villagers said regime functionaries had seized or tried to take their land. “There’s this feeling that we have to modernize, we have to urbanize and this is our national-development strategy,” Landesa China director Gao Yu was quoted as saying. “It’s almost like another Great Leap Forward.”
Amnesty International, meanwhile, reported last year that at least 41 Chinese people had set themselves on fire from 2009 to 2011 to protest the widespread confiscation of land and property. The real numbers are probably much higher, but the dictatorship enforces an Orwellian censorship regime that aims to prevent the world and the people of China from knowing what the communist despots are doing.
“The problem of forced evictions represents the single most significant source of popular discontent in China,” the U.S.-based human rights group warned in its report. Under the new plan, however, the long-simmering outrage is likely to keep growing as the repressive regime gobbles up ever-greater quantities of land while dislocating hundreds of millions of people.
Unsurprisingly, Beijing, its legions of propagandists, and its Western apologists all claim that the “Great Uprooting,” as the New York Times put it, will benefit China and the victims of forced re-location. “Urbanization will usher in a huge amount of consumption and investment demand, increase job opportunities, create wealth for farmers, and bring benefits to the people,” the dictatorship’s new “Premier,” Li Keqiang, announced at a press conference.
Lower-level functionaries for the regime echoed those claims in media interviews. Vice director Li Xiangyang, with the dictatorship’s “Institute of World Economics and Politics,” for example, argued that forcing farmers into cities would force them to consume more. “If half of China’s population starts consuming, growth is inevitable,” he claimed. “Right now they are living in rural areas where they do not consume.”
Another argument advanced by proponents of the radical plot — described by the leftist U.K. Guardian as “the biggest and fastest social movement in human history” that is “turning Chinese society on its head” — is the notion that farming could become more efficient and “sustainable” if small farms were eradicated and replaced by massive operations. The regime’s “premier” made similar claims about the plan, estimated to cost upwards of $5 trillion.
Also part of the agenda is enforcing more so-called “sustainability” and pseudo-environmentalist policies on China — a highly polluted nation thanks in large part to communism, central planning, and a lack of real property rights. While a controversial United Nations scheme known as Agenda 21 has so far largely stayed out of the limelight in relation to the Chinese regime’s latest plan, the similarities between the UN’s planetary vision and the “urbanization” plan are remarkable.
To analysts who have followed China, the UN, so-called “sustainability,” and the role of the Western establishment in all of it, however, the communist autocracy’s new plot is hardly surprising. Billionaire banker and self-styled globalist David Rockefeller, for example, wrote fondly of Mao’s mass-murdering agenda as early as the 1970s. “The social experiment in China under Chairman Mao's leadership is one of the most important and successful in history," he claimed in a 1973 piece for the New York Times.
Other globalist pseudo-environmentalist advocates for the UN, sustainability, and the Chinese regime include people like Maurice Strong, former Earth Summit boss. Twenty years after the original 1992 Earth Summit, a senior Chinese Communist Party member chaired the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Beijing’s latest “Five Year Plan” is also filled with “green” references.
While only outlines of the Chinese “urbanization” plan exist publicly at the moment, analysts say more concrete information on how hundreds of millions of farmers will be herded into cities should emerge after the Communist Party’s “Third Plenum” meeting in the fall. The autocrats have reportedly asked the World Bank to help create “sustainable” proposals to “urbanize” the hundreds of millions of people.
What is almost certain at this point, however, is that, like all centrally planned efforts to restructure an entire society, Chinese people — and especially the peasants — can expect extra doses of misery and brutality. Forced evictions, like forced abortions, already run rampant in China. There is little doubt that the “urbanization” scheme will make it worse.
The dictatorship ruling from Beijing has already developed a reputation as among the most repressive and barbaric in the world — and even throughout human history. Despite Rockefeller’s claims of “success,” the coming decade will undoubtedly see countless additional crimes perpetrated by the Chinese Communist Party in its zeal to uproot innocent citizens to suit the grand designs of their rulers. Whether justice will be served, however, depends on how the people of China react.
Photo of Shanghai skyline
Alex Newman, a foreign correspondent for The New American, is currently based in Europe. He can be reached at