china and korea communism and containment in the East

Communism in EAST
*Background: China had been ruled by the Manchu dynasty since the 17th century. The
Manchu emperor gave China national unity.
* European began to force themselves into China in order to get trade concessions from
the Emperor (it is then 1839-42 that the Opium Wars give British Hong Kong.
* The Manchu dynasty continued to have problems (War with Japan (1894-95, another
war with the English, Boxer Rebellion (1898-1900). Meanwhile, a new group of
revolutionary intellectuals was being trained in Russia and Western countries, and
bringing back to China ideas of political and economic reform.
* * In 1911, The Last Emperor Pu Yi (only 5 years old) turned to a retired general (Yuan
Shih-Kai) for help against the revolutionaries. The General makes a deal with them
instead, making him the President of a Chinese Republic in exchange for reform. Instead,
he ruled as a military dictator until he lost popularity by declaring himself Emperor in
* The Warlord Era (1916-1928) then follows. After the defeat of General Yuan, China
enters a period that resembled medieval feudalism, with the country being broken into
hundreds of small warring kingdoms. The hope for national unification lay with the
Kuimintang (founded in 1912) under Dr. Sun Yat-sen. Sun, who was trained abroad
(Hawaii) came back to China with 3 goals:
1.) Nationalism: kick foreigners out of China, unite all provinces.
2.) Democracy: teach Chinese about setting up democratic institutions
3.) Land reform: redistribution of land (with compensation to the owners) and rent
Sun controlled Canton in the South, but that’s all. He made alliances with communists
who also wanted to control the power of the warlords. He dies in 1925
* Sun is replaced by Chiang Kai-shek, a General, who was trained in part, by the
Russians. In 1926, Chiang sets out on the Northern March, following the Yangtze River,
captures the major cities, and finally, Peking (Beijing) by 1928.
*At this point, Chiang has peasant support, thanks to the communist program of seizing
land in areas they controlled. That is why by 1927, Chiang fears the popularity of the
Communists, begins to purge the KMT, kills an estimated 250,000. Chiang turns towards
wealthy land owners for support.
* Chiang will now be opposed by the Communists under Mao Zedong
* Was at founding meeting of Chinese communist party in 1921. Was a teacher by
training, but entered political life full-time at this point.
*After break with KMT in 1927, Mao decides upon gaining peasant support (Marxism
says to concentrate on urban workers, the proletariat). In 1931, Mao is the Chairman of
the Ceentral Executive Committee.
* Mao and the Communists’ main objective was to survive, since Chiang had begun an
all-out war against them. Mao and his forces (about 100,000) are surrounded in 1934 in
Southeastern China, break through Chiang’s lines, and do the Long March. ( Red Star, p.
1.) Mao and Red Army march 6,000 miles in 368 days. Get peasant support.(read
rules of Red Army page 354) in contrast to the KMT forces who abused peasants.
2.) Secures Mao as a charismatic leader and a legend in his own time
* Japan’s entry into China by the 1931 (Manchuria 1931, Northeastern China in 1937)
forced Mao and Chiang to have a truce(1936).
* At the end of the war, the US tried to help Chang:
1.) By insisting that Japanese forces surrender only to Chiang’s men, not Red Army
2.) Giving massive aid to Chiang, especially after Truman Doctrine.
Where did Mao get his equipment and money?
* In regions controlled by the Communists, landlords were taxed, peasants were not. (Red
Star, p. 230)
* Outright confiscation from the “exploiters”.
* Peasants knew that they had to help Mao any way they could, or else return to life
under the KMT.
* Captured equipment ( Red Star, p. 179) helped to keep the meager resources of Mao’s
army going. However, the Red Army was run on a shoe-string budget, and usually
lacked guns. That is why they fought a guerilla, attack and quick dispersal. The Red
Army captured about 4 planes from Chiang’s Air Force, but then lacked gas and pilots!
1.)KMT was corrupt, viewed as tool of industrialists, had little support outside cities.
2.)Little improvement in working conditions
3.)Mao concentrated efforts on winning peasant support instead of trying to gain support
in the cities where the KMT was stronger. This meant land redistribution where the
commies had control, or else restricting rents in certain areas in order to gain the support
of small land holders. Also, respected peasants. P.354 red army rules Meanwhile,
Chiang's policy of terrorizing the peasants to gain submission back-fired. He not only
lost peasant support, by disillusioned much of his own forces, who began to defect or
surrender to the commies without a fight.
4.)The KMT offered no effective resistance to the Japanese invasion. Chiang's forces
were quickly pushed back from the east by the Japs in 1937, leaving Mao to consolidate
his strength and fight an effective guerilla campaign in the north against the Japs. This
gave the Commies wide support among both peasants and middle class, as they were
viewed as patriotic nationalists.
5.)Mao's army was simply better trained.
6.)By January 1949, Mao was strong enough to confront Chiang and took Beijing.
October 1949, Mao and Zhou Enlai in complete control of mainland China, declared
Peoples’ Republic. Chiang at Formosa by December.
1.)At the end of 1945(Dec) Truman had asked Marshall to go try to mediate in China.
Marshall spent a year flying back and forth, and gave up saying of Mao"That is a real
iron curtain when you get there."
2.)The U.S. then tried to back Chiang with Marshall plan aid , most of disappeared.
3.)U.S. then decides it has to wait and see what turn events would take. When Mao wins
and flies to Moscow to sign a mutual defense pact in December '49, U.S. has to accept
4.)Americans were absolutely stunned by the loss of China, Truman's administration
viewed as the people who sold Chiang down the river. This coupled with the explosion
of an A-Bomb by the Russians in September of '49 led to the next phase of the Cold War,
namely, the real beginning of the Arms Race.
1.)January 1950, HST gives OK to develop H-Bomb. New Secratary of State Dean
Aecheson backs idea of big Nuke arsenal, believing it would allow the U.S. to reduce size
of costly conventional forces, and give the U.S. more Bang for the Buck.
2.) Meanwhile, Kennan resigns, states the U.S. should have peaceful co-existence with
the USSR and keep small tactical units. Kennan replaced by Paul Nitze who was an
Aecheson man.
3.)NSC 68 marks change in U.S. policy. Thesis:
1.)Soviets have a plan for world domination
2.)Soviets have military superiority
3.)Negotiated peace impossible, must count on threat of annihilation, "Free World v.
Slave Society. Security must become the dominant force in the National Budget. Calls
for 20% of GNP, or 50 billion $ a year!(15 billion was current budget)
4.)HST agrees with NSC 68, but lawmakers find it hard to swallow. Aecheson
later said, "Korea came along and saved us." June 25, 1950 North Korea invades South,
Cold war as a war by proxy begins.
Korea June 1950-July 1953 (30 million people in United Korea)
* Korea had been controlled by the Japanese since 1910, before that it had one of the
longest dynasties in World History.
1.)Korea had been divided at the 38th parallel in order to organize the surrender of Jap
forces. Free elections were to be held to create a unified Korea, but no agreement could
be reached. Revisionists argue that the U.S. was afraid that a leftist government would
come to power since Koreans were ready for radical change at the end of the war
(parameters page 17) The US and USSR used their presence to promote “friendly”
governments in their zones. Military agreement becomes political.
2.)Separate elections are held in the South and the Republic of Korea was formed under
Rhee, with capital at Seoul in August '48.
3.)September '48, The People's Republic of Korea under Kim il Sung was created with
capital at Pyonyang.
4.)In 1949, US and USSR troops withdraw.
5.)June 25, 1950, North attacks the South in effort to unify the country: Kim’s army had
been brought up to level as Mao sent back Korean troops that had been fighting alongside
the Communists in China in the war against Chaing.
— Kim pressured Stalin during a 3 week visit to Moscow in April
to support a move towards reunification. Stalin had already supplied Kim with planes and
tanks, now a Russian general helped Kim plan the attack.
— Kim left Moscow for Peking, where Mao gave his blessings as well,
after clarification from Moscow.
— Korea left out of Aecheson's Defensive Perimeter speech in Jan 1950:
— not necessarily a cold war in origin (revisionists) Becomes a Cold
war as US responds quickly, Because HST sees Kim as a Soviet puppet.
(Look at HST speech of June 27 1950, Parameters p.14)
WHO CARES? We Do! Revisionists claim that the Korean war was an internal
conflict, rather than a case of external aggression that justified an international
response in the name of Collective Security. They also say that the U.S. stalled the
elections because of fear of a left-wing government.
Traditionalists argue that Kim was a puppet of Stalin, so the war was collective
security against Soviet expansion.
6.)Meanwhile, Soviets had been boycotting UN Security council (Jan-Aug)because they
would not kick out Chinese Nationalists . So US is able to push for UN police action in
Korea, without threat of Soviet veto. By July, MacArthur head of UN forces in Korea.
HST orders partial US mobilization, Neither Stalin or Mao expected the U.S. to do
anything militarily in Korea.
THE WAR: The Yo-Yo War
1.)Communists over-run the South by September
2.)Daring U.S. landing at Inchon on September 15 pushes commies back up to 38th p,
recaptures Seoul, clears south of commies.
3.)HST decides reluctantly ( afraid of China, also afraid of not doing it because of being
“soft on commies”) to invade North Korea with vague UN approval concerning securing
free elections. ROLL BACK POLICY October 7, U.S. troops cross 38th
4.)By the end of October , 1950, UN troops under Mac had reached Yalu, HST begins
secret armistice talks. Meanwhile, Mac is pushing for the bombing of bridges along the
Yalu, even wants to re-take Manchuria using Nukes if necessary.
MEANWHILE: Russian pilots disguised as Koreans, are flying Mig 15's to protect Yalu
river. November 25, 1950, Chinese pour across border with 300,000 “volunteers”,
recapture Seoul, push UN troops back to 38th by mid January 1951.(paper from
Parameters puts the date as Oct. 19, 1950). The problem for the Chinese was their
supply lines.
— In March ‘51, Mac announces publically for the Chinese to give up, provoking a
constitutional crisis he is then fired in April says "Old soldiers don't die, they just fade
Mac represented the illusion of Massive Retaliation, when the reality was that the U.S.
could not afford to engage the Chinese in war.
5.)War enters stalemate in June 1951 when U.N. forces clear the rest of Communist
troops from South Peace negotiations begin and last two years. Stalin's death in March
'53 helps push negotiations along. New President Eisenhower goes to Korea. Armistice
signed in July 1953.
1.)UN stops an act of aggression
2.) Cold war pattern of containment and encirclement in far East against China: SEATO
in 1954 (Australia, New Zealand, Britain, France, US Pakistan, Thailand, Philippines)
4.) 4 million Koreans dead.
5.) Korea divided
6.) China shows itself a player in power politics, prevents the unification of Korea vis a
vis the US!
7.) Reappraisal of US policy: New US defense policy in 1954: Massive Retaliation
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