It’s been written before that the followers of the ideas put forth by Karl Marx, who co-authored the Communist Manifesto, have killed at least 100 million people in the 20th century.
But now, the Chinese Communist Party, to spread what former Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin described as “monumental propaganda,” offered a statue of Marx to the German town of his birth. The town voted to accept the statue, drawing ire from some of its residents.
The statue, 21 feet tall and made of bronze, will be set up in the town of Trier. China announced it wished to give the statue to Marx’s hometown to mark his 200th birth anniversary in 2018.
“Setting up a statue of a man who played a major role in the development of Communism is a shame and not an honor for Trier,” one local wrote in a Trier newspaper, as the Telegraph reported.
Green Party politician Reiner Marz echoed that statement, saying: “Whoever accepts the present honors the gift giver. China’s Communist party doesn’t deserve any honor.”
Trier mayor Wolfram Leibe responded to the criticism, saying: “This has nothing to do with glorification. Those times are over.” He didn’t elaborate on what he meant by “those times are over,” as China, Vietnam, Laos, North Korea, and Cuba are still officially ruled by communist parties. Meanwhile, Trier, considered the oldest city in Germany with a history dating back to the Roman Empire, was never under communist rule.
Recently, with the 100th anniversary of the Bolshevik Revolution coming up later this year, discussion on Marx’s legacy and character, including the racist and anti-Semitic views expressed in some of his writings, have been swirling on the internet.
While it’s undeniable that Marx’s theories left a significant impact on the world in the century that followed his death, the nature of that impact has been overwhelmingly destructive. Mass murders, manmade famines, slave labor, torture, religious persecution, and the destruction of traditional values were hallmarks of many communist-ruled states that tried to implement his theories.
R.J. Rummel, a political science professor at the University of Hawaii, compiled a now-influential list of the killings carried out by communist regimes, and coined the term “democide,” or “murder by government.” He said that 212 million people were killed by governments, of which communist regimes were responsible for 148 million.
Communism is estimated to have killed around 100 million people, yet its crimes have not been fully compiled and its ideology still persists. Epoch Times seeks to expose the history and beliefs of this movement, which has been a source of tyranny and destruction since it emerged.