Revolutionary Chaos in China
Starts in the year 1921
In 1921 the Chinese communist party is formed in Shanghai
By 1920, two political forces emerged to challenge the Chinese government:
-Sun Yat-sen’s Nationalist Party
-Chinese Communist Party (CCP)
Parties Working Together
-1921, a group of radicals from the CCP in Shanghai advised the party to work with the Nationalist Party.
-1923, the two groups formed an alliance to oppose the warlords and drive the imperialist powers out of China.
-1925, Sun Yat-sen dies and Chiang Kai-shek becomes head of the Nationalists.
-April 1927, he killed thousands of Communists in the Shanghai Massacre.
-The alliance ceased to exist.
The Communists in Hiding
-After the massacre, CCP leaders went into hiding into the city to try to revive the CCP among the working class.
-The movement was then led by Mao Zedong in Jiangxi.
-Kai-shek turned toward Jiangxi and outnumbered Mao’s troops.
-Mao made effective use of guerilla tactics to fight the enemy advances.
Mao’s four slogans for war
When the enemy advances, we retreat!
When the enemy halts and camps, we trouble them!
When the enemy tries to avoid battle, we attack!
When the enemy retreats, we pursue!
The Long March
-1934, Chiang surrounded Jiangxi. However, Mao’s army, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), broke through and began the famous Long March.
-90,000 traveled by foot for one year and over 6,000 miles. Only 9,000 made it.
One survivor’s quote
“As the days went by, there was less and less to eat. After our grain was finished, we ate the horses, and then we lived on wild vegetables. When even the wild vegetables were finished, we ate our leather belts. After that we had to march on empty stomachs.”
The New China of Chiang Kai-shek
Chiang publicly declared his commitment to the plans of a republican government.
Two part plan:
1) Period of political tutelage (training), which would lead to
2) a constitutional government.
-Years of neglect and civil war had severely weakened the political, economic, and social fabric of the nation.
-Chiang then tried to introduce foreign ideas into the population.
“New Life Movement”
The goal was to promote traditional Confucian social ethics and rejected excessive individualism and material greed.
Mei-ling Soong (Chiang’s wife)
-Undertook a massive road-building project.
-Repaired and extended the railway system.
-Established a national bank.
-Improved the education system.
-1930 land reform program.
-There was no redistribution of wealth.
-Government was repressive and censored any free expression.
-Alienated many intellectuals and political moderates.