Chairman Mao's grandson proclaims nepotism was key to promotion

The unspoken thought when Chairman's Mao grandson was appointed as China's youngest ever major-general last week was that revolutionary heritage had triumphed over martial prowess.

Now Mao Xinyu, 40, has confirmed that nepotism played its part in his appointment, admitting to a popular Chinese website that his family background was "definitely a factor" in the decision to add a second star to his epaulettes.

It is this enduring respect for his grandfather that was reflected in the promotion, said Mao, who is a military historian at the Academy of Military Sciences and a fervent defender of his grandfather's legacy.

Mao Tse-Tung, who founded China Communist Republic in 1949, sired nine children from four marriages, including his second son, Mao Xinyu's father Mao Anqing....

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