Xi Jinping on a limb as history rewritten MICHAEL SHERIDAN, BEIJING From: The Times May 06, 2013 12:00AM A SIGNIFICANT chapter in the official history of the Chinese Communist Party, overseen by new leader Xi Jinping, has been challenged by a new book. It demolishes the authorised account of the fall of Lin Biao, the anointed heir to Mao Zedong, thus undermining Mr Xi's credibility. Lin died with his wife and son when their Trident airliner crashed in Mongolia in 1971 after running out of fuel during what the Communist Party has always portrayed as an attempt to flee from China to the Soviet Union. Publication of the book in Hong Kong illuminates the ceaseless battle to control what the Chinese people know about their recent past. It contains hitherto unseen documents and says the official version of Lin's fall from Mao's favour is riddled with falsehoods. The problem for Mr Xi is that he is one of the prime movers behind the second volume of the official party history, issued two years ago, which repeated the standard line. It maintained that Lin was guilty of two conspiracies - to assassinate Mao and to set up a rival government in southern China. But the new book reprints a letter to Mao from Lin's daughter, who survived, denying any plots. It shows from the party's own records that four of his generals firmly denied knowing of the alleged conspiracies. Essays by four expert contributors inside China also question testimony by military officers. . The new book, The Lin Biao Incident Revisited, is published this month in Chinese by the New Century Press in Hong Kong. The publisher, Bao Pu, is the son of China's best-known elite dissident, the liberal communist official Bao Tong. "Xi Jinping is a Maoist," said Mr Bao. He said Mr Xi was "the mastermind" of the 2011 History of the Communist Party volume 2 (1949-1978), which avoided blaming Mao for the death of his political heir. The work took 16 years to write. In an introduction to the book, Roderick MacFarquhar of Harvard said Lin was the victim of one of Mao's traps. "Why would Lin need to take such extreme measures when, with his name written into the party constitution as heir apparent, and since he was 14 years younger than the chairman, he could expect to succeed in a few years?" he said. The answer, according to Professor MacFarquhar, was that Mao feared Lin's power over the army and systematically moved against him until the Lin family, fearing they were doomed, made the fatal mistake of fleeing. The Sunday Times Cookies must be enabled. | The Australian ******************************************** A new expose of how Chinese history is structured to suit the Party line, there being no space for independent research and inquiry. If this expose had not been published, history would have bought the CCP's line hook, line and sinker. However, the question does arise as to why was Lin leaving China and how can a prominent leader's aeroplane not have adequate fuel for the journey contemplated? Maybe the book reveals as to why, but the new report seems to have missed that out!