From DNAIndia.com (link):
To most observers, the period in China when the Cultural Revolution played itself out horribly was a ‘lost decade’, a black hole in the country’s history.
During this period, millions of people were killed or driven to suicide as Chairman Mao Zedong’s foot soldiers moved ruthlessly and recklessly to seize power within the Communist Party.
However, for Prof Ding Xueliang, one of the key members of a radical branch of the Red Guard in Anhui province in east-central China who experienced the horrors of those times, the decade wasn’t entirely a lost cause. There are critical lessons to be learnt from that time, says Ding, currently a social sciences professor at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and a Senior Associate of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.