The ongoing Fourth Plenary Session of the 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) will deliberate and pass the decision on major issues concerning comprehensively advancing the rule of law. Global public opinion has paid much attention to the plenum, mirroring the extraordinary significance of it. But noticeably, mainstream Western media have questioned whether the Party or the law is paramount in China. This may lead to the meeting being misread. In their analyses, the leadership of the CPC and the rule of law are contradictory. Such stereotyped political logic of the West has long affected part of China.
These misperceptions must be swept away. Official documents such as the report to the 18th National Congress of the CPC and leaders’ speeches in recent years have repeatedly cast light on the combination of the CPC’s leadership, the position of the people as masters of the country and the rule of law. This emphasizes that “the Party should lead legislation, ensure law enforcement and set an example by abiding by the law.”
Building China into a state under the rule of law is the culmination of China’s long-term crusade to improve the legal system. Some 17 years have passed since the rule of law was written into the report to the 15th National Congress of the CPC in 1997 for the first time. It’s high time to mobilize the whole Party and the Chinese people to make a determination to march toward that goal.
Resorting to its soft power, the West has attempted to distract us from our process and goals. It has indeed influenced some Chinese, who hold that the rule of law is incompatible to China’s fundamental political system. The focus of the rule of law at present should be administering officials by law. The Party should carry out its activities within the framework of the Constitution and other laws, and no organization or individual has the privilege to overstep the Constitution and any other laws. These are not slogans, but must be implemented in reforms by governments at all levels and become routine for officials.
It is obvious that the West and the CPC share a different purpose in advancing the rule of law in China. Our goal is to realize people’s happiness and national prosperity through improving socialist institutions. But the West doesn’t truly care about the fate of 1.3 billion people. What they care about is their own interests. An abrupt approach which is at the huge cost of social uncertainty won’t be China’s choice to advance the rule of law. It must be able to improve Chinese people’s livelihoods. It is a request raised by our own people. Only the long-ruling CPC can be serious in taking this responsibility.
When China embraces a major endeavor, it is time to form a new force to drive the country forward; meanwhile, external influences will try to impose their effect. It has already become a routine. The rule of law is now at the threshold of comprehensive advancement. The blueprint of its implementation will emerge in a few days. It won’t be an illusion, but will be based on China’s past experience.