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Deng: Even More Brutal

In response to:

The Bloodthirsty Deng We Didn’t Know from the October 22, 2015 issue

To the Editors:

In Jonathan Mirsky’s “The Bloodthirsty Deng We Didn’t Know” [NYR, October 22], we could perhaps round off Deng Xiaoping’s bloodthirsty record by mentioning that he opposed Mao Zedong for initiating the Hundred Flowers Campaign, and for allowing some criticism of the Party. Subsequently, when Mao reversed his line, Deng was put in charge of the anti-rightist campaign to take care of “stinking” intellectuals and critics of the Party. About 2.9 million people were accused of rightism. About five hundred thousand, by Deng’s own estimate (offered in 1980), were condemned. The campaign was marked by great brutality.

Jamyang Norbu
Monteagle, Tennessee