A Model Communist Murders His Wife: Kong Lingping’s “Bloody Chronicle”

Another excerpt from my draft translation of Kong Lingping’s Bloody Chronicles 

You can find other excerpts in the column at right or by typing Kong Lingping in the blog search box.

(3) The model communist Zhang Jianbo

In 1969, a discipline and education cadre named Zhang Jianbo transferred in from the Beiwu Company. Zhang, from Neijiang County in Sichuan Province, had a pair of cruel eagle eyes and a hawk-like nose pasted on his ugly, ferocious face. His face was usually a ghastly shade of pale. Never smiling, he looked fearsome. He had a mole on his left eyelid. Looking at people with a blank expression, he confirmed the old saying, “If someone is dishonest, you can see it in their eyes”.

– 359 –

据说原来他是内江法院刑侦处的预审员,因为善于用诡计和毒刑逼供犯人,所以曾被内 江法院多次表彰过。并号称模范共产党员,在他的办公室里悬褂着“无产阶级忠忱卫士”的锦 旗。

文革时调住西昌,因为他办案有功,特别擅长对付“思想犯”,六队又是全场出名的“反 改造份子”集中处。加上在严打运动中突击办案的需要,便专门把他调到六队来。

长期的淫威,使残害无辜的职业杀手,养成一种捕风捉影、无限上纲、无中生有的吃人 野牲。

在盐源农场办理集体枪杀蒋正均的反革命集团案中,他初试牛刀,仅从该案人犯的口供, 就定下反革命集团结论,挥下屠刀一次就处决了五名“反革命”成员,那一个案子所处理的同 案人员达四十余人!他自己就说过:

上面既然要杀一小批,还有什么手软的。我们办案人员就是要紧跟毛主席的战略部署, 杀人不杀人,杀多少人,都只能以政治形势的需要决定!至于思想这个罪,不一定要什么证据, 藏在人的脑子里谁说得清?有个一两句言论便可以定罪!”

正因为他颇能精通文字狱做办案的主导思想,所以在文革中凡是办不下的案子都请他专 门定罪,由于职业需要,渐渐养成习惯,使他丧失了人性,发展到连自己的妻子也成了他杀对 象。

It was said that before Zhang Jianbo was a preliminary hearing officer of Neijiang Court’s criminal affairs department, the Neijiang Court had decorated several times for his skill at using trickery and torture to get people to confess. He had also been a model Communist Party member. In his office had hung a silk banner inscribed with the words “Loyal Guardian of the Proletariat”.

He had been transferred to Xichang during the Cultural Revolution. For his successful casework and in particular for his skilll at handling “thought offenders”, the Sixth Brigade had become known throughout the farm for specializing in cases of people who “resisted personal transformation”. One other reason for his assignment to the Sixth Brigade was that he was good at quickly preparing cases when a crack down hard campaign suddenly started up again.

Long held absolute power had so corrupted this professional murderer and mutilator of innocent people that there grew up in him a cannibalistic wild lust for blood that made him make up groundless accusations, to wildly exaggerate people’s mistakes and to fabricate crimes out of whole cloth.

During his handling of the case that culminated in the execution by firing squad of the Jiang Zhengjun counter-revolutionary group at the Yanyuan Farm, Zhang Jianbo took out his butcher’s knife. From the confessions he forced that way, he came to his own conclusions about the counter-revolutionary group. With one wave of his butcher’s knife, he five members of that “counter-revolutionary” group executed. Over forty people were implicated in that case. He said himself:

“The government wants us to kill a few people in order to intimidate the others. Then how can we be lenient? We who are handling this cases must march in lock-step with the strategic plan laid down by Mao Zedong. Everything we do — killing people or not killing people and just how many people we do kill all need to be done according to the political situation. No evidence is needed to convict political prisoner! Who can see what is hidden in someone’s mind? A few words are enough to find them guilty!

Zhang Jianbo understood very well the ideology behind the literary inquisitions. Therefore during the Cultural Revolution it was Zhang who was assigned to find people guilty in difficult cases. He got so used to finding people guilty entirely because of his professional needs that he gradually lost all his remaining vestiges of humanity. He even reached the point that even his own wife became the object of his homicidal fury.

到六队来以后,他的作风是深居简出,行踪诡秘。平时并不像何庆云那样抛头露面,唠 唠叨叨,与流放者很少交谈,当他的眼睛盯上了你,便在背地调集卷宗。每到这种时候,他便 用内江人常用的话:“内江的老招牌,告才晓得!”那么,你就得留神,你的名字已在他的“生 死簿”上勾销了。

六队近年来案子中,枪杀陈力、蒋正君等人,都有他提供的预审口供和签署的处决意见, 他还审讯过潘朝元、蔡先禄等人,并签署了死刑意见,只是因为在上报到西昌地区中级法院时 未被核准,而免去刀下鬼的厄运。

我也是他下过屠刀的人之一,当时杀人真是太容易了,凡是有反革命言论的,具体的说, 只要沾着三面红旗、文化大革命的“反动”言论,都可以整理材料上报处决。

他之所以狂批杀人的预审报告,出自他那升官的欲望,以及为满足自己兽欲的追求,只 要用一两句话,甚至似是而非的编造,便下了恶毒攻击伟大领袖,诬蔑无产阶级司令部的结论, 判决死刑的意见也就出来了。

After he arrived at the Sixth Brigade, Zhang Jianbo lived in seclusion. He kept his comings and goings secret. Unlike He Qingyun, he did not often go out and have casual conversations with the exiles. If he looked at you, that meant he was already deep in your dossier. When things got to that point, he would use a common Neijiang saying, “In Neijiang, you only know if you are famous if someone tells you so!” You always had to be careful lest your name should already have been crossed off in his “Book of the Living and the Dead”.

At the Sixth Brigade recent years, he had handled the cases of Chen Li, Jiang Zhenjun and others whom he had had shot to death. All those executions were based on confessions that he had extracted and death warrants the had signed. He also interrogated Fan Chaoyuan, Cai Xianlu and others. He signed their execution recommendations too but it was only because the Xichang Intermediate Court had rejected his recomendations that they were not executed.

He used his butcher’s knife on me too. In those days, executing people was very easy. Any counter-revolutionary statement or more specifically any “reactionary” words that touched on the the Three Red Banners campaign or on the Cultural Revolution could be weaved into an execution recommendation report.

His desire to get himself promoted fed the mad fury of his interrogations and the reports he wroted designed to get groups of people executed. To satisfy his animal lusts, all he needed was a few words, or failing that, he could even make some up, then then send on to headquarters his recommendation that the accused had viciously attacked the glorious leader and slandered the proletariat and so should be executed.

然而杀人太多会造成心理上的极度虚弱,庭审陈力时,陈力怒目极视,严词批驳的态度 深深振憾了他,陈力牺牲后使他经常通夜恶梦,梦见陈力,提着他的头来向他讨命债,吓得他 无处藏身,惊出一身冷汗从梦中惊醒。

第二天,他的邻居马干事问他昨夜又梦见了谁?半夜三更的在屋子里怪叫,他却不与回 答。神经上的负压,梦境中的恶鬼见多了,使他歇斯底里,无法控制。在这种扭曲的心态下,

Killing so many people however left him in a extremely brittle psychological state. During his interrogation of Chen Li, Chen had fiercely stared him down. Chen Li’s strenous refutations of Zhang Jianbo’s accusations shook Zhang profoundly. After the execution of Chen Li, Zhang often had nightmares. He dreamed that Chen Li was carrying his head and demanding compensation from Zhang for wrongful death. This frightened him so badly that he felt that he had nowhere to hide. Those dreams so frightened him that he would wake up in a cold sweat.

After one of those dreams, his neighbor Cadre Ma asked him whom he had seen in his dreams? Zhang had screamed in his own bedroom in the early morning hours. Zhang didn’t answer. Zhang had been feeling a lot of pressure. The many evil ghosts he was seeing in his dreams brought on an uncontrollable hysteria. In this twisted mental state, his moral character, which had been abysmal to start with, sunk even lower. He had always been interested in sex but now he used sex more and more so that heterosexual stimulation would blot out his fears and bury his troubles so that he could get to sleep.

– 360 –

他原来就十分堕落的道德更加堕落,他本来就生性好色,为了解除晚上的失眠,越来越用异性 的剌激来解除他的恐惧和烦恼。

在盐源农场,多年有一个女人暗中陪伴他。他对于老家带到农场来的结发前妻感到乏味, 由乏味干脆把她送回老家,以免留在身边,“碍手碍脚”。结发老婆回老家后,他就同这个骚女 人由暗地转为半公开同居。

张剑波从这个女人的奸宿中,用刺激来减少他的精神压力。但是自从他们变成了半公开 同居以后,那女人越来越不满意这种不明不白的关系,虽然张剑波的工资大半归她掌握。

为了公开的名份,她几次催促张剑波与“前妻”离婚,可恨的是,他妻子两个在当地公 社颇有势力的弟弟,却坚决反对舅老倌这种陈世美作风,离婚遇到了无法抗拒的阻力,在那个 时代,办理正式离婚手续,只要有一方不同意,便会维持原来婚姻。

林彪事件以后,“杀一小批”的严打运动暂时停了下来,以此为专职的张剑波也开始闲起 来了,他便借这个机会向盐源农场的管教科请了两个月“探亲假”,心里盘算着怎么来解决他 的婚姻烦恼,经过与姘居女人的商量,在他的心中萌生了一个神不知鬼不觉的计划。

For several years, a woman had been his secret companion. Even before Yanyuan Farm, he had felt his hometown wife colorless and boring. Tiring of her, he sent her back to her home so that she would not be “binding him hand and foot”. After his wife returned home, his relationship with the homewrecker changed from clandestine to more of less open cohabitation.

Zhang Jianbo used the excitement of his adulterous liaisons with her to relieve the pressure he felt. Once they started living together more or less openly, however, she became more and more dissatisfied with the uncertain relationship they had even though Zhang Jianbo handed most of his income over to her.

So that she her relationship with him could be publicly known, she repeatedly demanded that Zhang Jiango divorce his “previous wife”. What he really hated about his situation now was that his wife’s two younger brothers, who were very influential in their own commune, strongly opposed their brother-in-law’s ungrateful behavior. The divorce had met an insuperable obstacle. In those days, if one party objected the divorce, the orginal marriage would remain valid.

After the Lin Biao Incident, the “kill a few people to intimidate the others” Strike Hard campaign paused. Zhang Jianbo, by now specializing in these cases, began to complain. He took of the break by asking the Yanyuan Farm discipline and education department for two months of leave “to visit relatives”. He thought that he could solve his marital problems. After talking things over with his lover, he hatched a plot.

在老家的故居,这几年一直寡居的老实巴交的妻子,意外在乡下家中迎接突然归来的丈 夫。她虽然已经耳闻她的丈夫在盐源已经同一个野女人私住在一起,但怎么敢去阻止这个凶恶 “丈夫”的私情?所以一直以息事宁人的态度,容忍了张剑波。

几次她收到张剑波寄来要她签字的离婚书,但却因两个兄长的反对,只好以不理睬的态 度装成什么也没收到。




取出一瓶精装泸洲大曲,说是农场春节团聚时,发给干部们的,一直留着舍不得吃,这次特地 带回家,同久别的妻子共饮。

女人经不住丈夫端着酒杯殷勤相劝,便接过酒来半杯下肚,不出半个时辰酒力发作,那 女人感到口舌麻木,腹中绞痛,面如死灰,七窍流血倒在地上一命呜呼了。(关于张剑波杀妻 属实,但其过程是听来的不能保证没有讹传。)

His good-natured wife, living alone like a widow for a few years in her old family home, happened to hear the news that her husband would soon return. She already knew that her husband was living with a woman on the Yanyuan Farm, but how could she ever dare to do anything to place obstacles in the way of the personal relationships of that evil “husband”? So she had always thought that she should try to patch up their quarrels and find a way to get along with Zhang Jianbo.

Several times she had received the signed divorce documents that Zhang Jianbo had sent her. Since her two elder brothers strongly opposed a divorce, however, she had always pretended that she had never received them.

When he suddenly returned home she felt as happy as if she had been “overwhelmed by an unexpected blessing” and so did not have any doubts or make any precautions.

Several days after he returned home, Zhang Jianbo went to the commune restaurant to buy several bottles of dinner wine. He took out of his bag a package of Luzhou Daqu licquor, saying it was a Spring Festival gift that had been given to the cadres. He had always been reluctant to drink it and so he had brought it home so that he could share it with his wife from whom he had been separated for so long.

The woman could not resist his urgings to toast with a cup of licquor. She drank down a half glass of the licquor. The licquor took effect in less than half an hour. Her tongue went numb and she had stomach pains. She got deathly pale, bled from her eyes, nose and mouth and soon died. (This is what I was told about Zhang Jianpo’s murder of his wife but I can’t be sure that there are no mistakes in this account.)

张剑波见事已得手,连忙取出预先准备好的锄头铁锹,把床搬开就床下连夜挖了一个深 坑,将她的尸体推入坑中掩埋,面上还铺了一层石灰,到天亮才收拾完毕。

第二天向邻人放出风声,说她回娘家,已两天没有回家,装着很焦急的样子去她的兄弟 家“寻找”。

经过一番紧张表演,他自认为可以瞒过这些村里人,最后以他的妻子离家出走,到公社 武装部报案了结。

Zhang Jianbo saw that his plan had succeeded. He took the hoe and iron shovel he had prepared, removed the floorboards and through the night to dig a deep hole. He buried her corpse in the hole and laid a layer of ash over it. He didn’t finish until dawn.

The next day, he told the neighbors she had gone back to her family home but hadn’t come back for two days. He pretended to be worried and went to her brothers’ home to “look for her”.

Having made this show of anxiety, he thought that he could trick these village people. Finally he went to the commune armed police to report that his wife had run away from home.

– 361 –

她的两个兄长虽然心里一团疑惑,但因为弄不清到底发生了什么事,便去他们姐姐家, 里外找寻,村民们七嘴八舌的议论,谁也说不准,她是外出遇到意外事故,还是什么原因失踪。

活生生的一个人突然失踪,暂被张剑波编造的谎言瞒过去。然而,一个女人为什么在张 剑波回来以后失踪,引起了村民们的怀疑。

被妻子阴魂附着的张剑波,怀着惴惴不安回到了盐源。然而内江市的军管会在这个女人 的两个兄弟督促下,成立了专案调查组,将张剑波列为重大嫌疑人。对张剑波平时为人霸道作 风十分不满的当地村民,在张剑波回盐源后,自发去她家的房前房后,寻找蛛丝马迹。

Although the two brothers were suspicious, but they couldn’t figure out what had happened. They went to their ancestral home and looked around elsewhere as well. The villagers had many theories but they couldn’t tell whether she might have had an accident while travelling outside the village or had been gotten lost for some other reason.

The lies that Zhang Jianbo had fabricated covered up for a time the real reason for her sudden disappearance. However, the question of just why that woman would disappear so soon after the return of Zhang Jianbo made the villagers suspicious.

Zhang Jianbo, pursued by the ghost of his wife, returned to Yanyuan an anxious man. Meanwhile, the Neijiang City military management committee, urged on by the woman’s two brothers, formed a special investigative team that listed Zhang Jianbo as the prime suspect. Villagers were very resentful of Zhang Jianbo’s customary overbearing ways. After Zhang Jianbo returned to Yanyuan, they went to her house on their own to look around for some tiny clue to what had happened.

有人发现,张剑波家里常有金头苍蝇绕屋不去,根据这个现象他们发现,女人床底下有 新土痕迹,而且怀疑那新土上面为什么盖有一层生石灰?最后终于从那里挖出了早已腐烂的尸 体。恶贯满盈的张剑波,到了死期来临的时侯。

管盐源农牧场军管会,竟在接到内江报来的材料后仍取遮掩态度,要内江当局考虑到张 剑波的身份,不要过份张扬,不要造成不良影响。

后来,又把张剑波划在隐藏在共产党内的蜕化变质份子,悄悄把这个“模范”党员办公 室里悬挂的“无产阶级忠忱卫士”锦旗摘了下来。拒不介绍这个凶恶的杀人犯的犯罪事实。但 内江他的老家,老百姓早已将这起凶杀案沸沸扬扬的“传开了”。

死者的娘家,在祭奠她的会上抚尸恸哭,要求当地政府将张剑波押回内江召开公审大会, 并交给她的家属们处理,但却遭到了政府的断然拒绝,虽然张剑波被很快处死,但他的罪行远 远没有揭露,民愤远远没有平息。

当局可以因“言论”罪,“思想”罪,把无辜的老百姓拉到斗争会上,一连几天无休止的 批斗,却对杀人凶犯保护有加。

They found that Zhang Jianbo’s home there were often bluebottle flies buzzing around that wouldn’t leave. Looking more closely into that, they found newly disturbed ground underneath the woman’s bed. They wondered why on that newly disturbed earth there was a layer of quicklime? Finally they dug out of the ground a corpse that had already begn to rot. Death was about to close in on Zhang Jianbo who was already guilty of countless terrible crimes.

Surprisingly, the Yanyuan Farm military management committee wanted a cover-up after it got the report from Neijiang. They asked the Neijiang authorities to consider Zhang Jianbo’s position and not to do anything that would have a bad effect on the Yanyuan community.

Later, they changed their minds, deciding that Zhang Jianbo had become a morally degenerate character lurking inside the Chinese Communist Party. They quietly removed from his office the pennant proclaiming that this “model” Communist Party member was a “Guardian of the Proletariat”. Yet still they refused to disclose the facts of the crime that that brutal murderer had committed. In his old hometown of Neijiang, however, people were already been sharing sensational rumors about this murder case.

The murdered woman’s family weeped over her body at the memorial ceremony. They asked the local government to bring Zhang Jianbo back under guard, put him on trial, and then turn him over to the woman’s family for them to dispose of. The local government refused point blank. Although Zhang Jianbo was quickly executed, the news of his crime was not disclosed and so popular indignation was not appeased.

The authorities would drag innocent common people to struggle meetings for “speech” crimes and for “thought” crimes. They would struggle them for days on end but still they were willing to protect the reputation of a murderer.

中共大小官员凭手中掌握的权力,天天在对手无寸铁的无辜受害者犯罪,他们比封建专 制的统治者有过之而无不及,古代的士大夫阶层可以拿着皇上赐给的免死牌,横行乡里,还过, 所能免去的也仅仅只有死罪。

而中共的党员干部靠掌握在手中的特权,犯了罪可用降职革官相赎,一般党员还可以用 党籍换得豁免。今天,腐败和贪污成风,与这层豁免的保护密切相关。在他们的罪恶还没有充 份暴露时,连“检举”他们都要倍加小心。

像张剑波这样的刽子手,所以能大胆毒杀前妻,就是因为这种特权所提供的保护作用, 全国像这类似的凶案,也不知有多少没有披露出来?

小秋收中,从这些拾包谷的女人口中,知道这些女人相当多生活得极不幸福,那些平时 对犯人虐待成性的狱吏们,养成了他们残暴的习惯,回到家对自己的女人也一样施行暴力。平 时把他们当作发泄性欲的奴隶,遇到不顺心的事,便把她们当成随便打骂的“出气筒”。

Chinese Communist Party officials both big and small used their power every day to commit crimes against their innocent unarmed victims. They were even worse than the feudal rulers of old imperial China. There was no crime that they not commit. The old literati officials might take advantage of the exemption from the death penalty that the emperor had bestowed upon them and commit all sorts of crimes. The only punishment that imperial indulgence shielded them against however was the death penalty.

Chinese Communist party members and cadres relied on their special privileges. If they committed a crime, they could pay for it with a demotion or firing. An ordinary party member could be dismissed from the party rather than face other punishment for their crimes. The graft and corruption have become common today have much to do with the special privileges that these kinds of people enjoy. Unless their crimes have already been fully exposed, even the people who report their crimes to the authorities must be very careful.

Thanks to those special privileges, a butcher like Zhang Jianbo dared murder his wife. How many similar cases took place throughout China but never saw the light of day?

Among those women who followed behind the harvesters collecting grain in the minor harvest many who lived in abject poverty. The jailers, who had formed their brutal habits in their dealings with prisoners, often brought those habits home and treated their own women with that same brutality. They treated their wives as slaves and as objects to satisfy their sexual passions. When they suffered some misfortune, they battered and cursed their wives as a way of “blowing off steam”.

当然,这些基层狱吏们的家属,毕竟靠自己的男人。在全国还在饥饿的时侯,过着丰衣 足食的生活,她们有吃不完的粮食,还有吃不完的鸡兔肉,她们是一群受人欺侮的“幸运儿”。

Naturally the families of those low-ranking jailers were forced to rely upon their men. Even all of China was hungry with famine, they still had enough food to eat and clothes to wear. Not only did they have all the food they could eat, they had in addition all the chicken and rabbit meat they could eat. They were a band of bullied “lucky ones”.

– 362 –

盐源农场的各劳改中队,因为全关押的男犯,客观上没有这些干部对被关押者,施行性 侵犯的条件。

在就业中队就发生过多次丑闻。就业人员在当时条件下,能娶妻成家的人本来就不多, 但那里的管教人员往往利用职务便利,趁就业人员的亲友,姐妹,女儿来队探亲时,发生借安 排住宿的机会,趁夜潜入招待所,对她们实行奸污的事。

碰上这样的事情,女方经常吃了哑巴亏,不敢对外张扬,除非产生了不可挽回的后果。 可以说,由毛泽东建立起来的“无产阶级”专政,一方面,使大批的无辜者论为淫威下



All the members of the reform through labor brigades at the Yanyuan Farm were male and so the jailers did not sexually abuse the prisoners.

There were several times rumors of sexual abuse among the brigades of free employees. Although the circumstances of the brigades of employed people often did not permit their members to marry and start a family, discipline and education department officers would often take advantage of their easy official access to farm facilities to come into guesthouses used by visiting friends, sisters and daughters of employed workers to seduce or rape them.

When that happened, the women usually had to swallow their complaints since they dared not tell anyone unless there were unavoidable consequences. We could say that ever since Mao Zedong founded the dictatorship of the “proletariat”, a great number of innocents were enslaved to lust and a privileged class of officials arose who could get away with anything. Under the protective umbrella of that dictatorship, they committed many terrible abuses. This protective umbrella also concealed a profound social crisis.




About 高大伟 David Cowhig

Worked 25 years as a US State Department Foreign Service Officer including ten years at US Embassy Beijing and US Consulate General Chengdu and four years as a China Analyst in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research. Before State I translated Japanese and Chinese scientific and technical books and articles into English freelance for six years. Before that I taught English at Tunghai University in Taiwan for three years. And before that I worked two summers on Norwegian farms, milking cows and feeding chickens.
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