Was the USA wrong to let the Communist Chinese win the civil war? | Paradox Interactive Forums
The Historyof Conflict Between the KMT and the CCP. Sununary. 34 The KMTand the CCP During the War faith in me and for his tremendous assistance in this project. . If I am double-minded, may God examine and judge me! 6. The best way to understand what is the relationship between CCP and China, is to , Chiang Kai-shek betrayed the KMT revolution and killed all CCP members Creatively speaking, it's like the “God” folks are talking about in the States. Because during the war, when the KMT & CCP entered into truce, and united Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome Crusader . In China, Stilwell was pure poison to Sino-American relations.
Germany's defeat in World War I and Yan's defeat in Henan in caused him to reassess the value of militarism as a way of life. He then decreased the size of the army until in order to save moneyuntil a rumor circulated that rival warlords were planning on invading Shanxi.
Yan then introduced military reforms designed to train a rural militia ofmen, along the lines of Japanese and American reserves. His troops were perhaps the only army in the Warlord era drawn exclusively from the province in which they were stationed, and because he insisted that his soldiers perform work to improve Shanxi's infrastructure—including road-maintenance and assisting farmers—and because his discipline ensured that his soldiers actually paid for anything they took from civilians, the army in Shanxi enjoyed much more popular support than most of his rivals' armies in China.
Despite efforts to subject his officers to a rigorous, Japanese-style training regimen and to indoctrinate them in Yan Xishan Thought, his armies never proved to be especially well-trained or disciplined in battle. In general, Yan's military record is not considered positive—he had more defeats than victories—and it is unclear whether his officer corps either understood or sympathized with his objectives, instead entering his service solely in the interests of achieving prestige and a higher standard of living.
Yan built an arsenal in Taiyuan that, for the entire period of his administration, remained the only center in China capable of producing field artillery. The presence of this arsenal was one of the main reasons that Yan was able to maintain Shanxi's relative independence. Attempts at social reform[ edit ] Yan went to great lengths to eradicate social traditions which he considered antiquated. He insisted that all men in Shanxi abandon their Qing-era queues, giving police instructions to clip off the queues of anyone still wearing them.
In one instance, Yan lured people into theatres in order to have his police systematically cut the hair of the audience. After Kuomintang military victories in generated great interest in Shanxi for the Nationalist ideology, including women's rightsYan allowed girls to enroll in middle school and college, where they promptly formed a women's association.
He discouraged the use of the traditional lunar calendar and encouraged the development of local boy scout organizations. Like the Communists who later succeeded Yan, he punished habitual lawbreakers to "redemption through labour" in state-run factories. At first, he dealt with opium dealers and addicts severely, throwing addicts in prison and exposing them and their families to public humiliation.
Many convicted of opium-related offenses then died of sudden withdrawal from the drug. Afterpartly due to public opposition to harsh punishment, Yan abandoned punishing addicts in favor of attempting to rehabilitate them, pressuring individuals through their families, and constructing sanitariums designed to slowly cure addicts of their addictions.
In the absence of efforts by other warlords to combat opium production and trade, Yan's efforts to combat opium use only increased the price of opium so much that narcotics of all kinds were drawn into Shanxi from other provinces. Users often switched from opium to pills mixed from morphine and heroinwhich were easier to smuggle and use. Because the most influential and powerful gentry in Shanxi were often the worst offenders, officials drawn from the privileged class of Shanxi seldom enforced Yan's decrees outlawing the use of narcotics, and often evaded punishment themselves.
Eventually Yan was forced to abandon his efforts to suppress opium trafficking, and attempted instead to establish a government monopoly on the production and sale of opium in Shanxi. The traffic persisted, but Yan's interests in opposing it were perhaps limited by a fear of provoking the Japanese, who manufactured most of the morphine and heroin available in China inside their concession area in Tianjinand who came to control much of the drug trade in northern China in the s.
Though gains were made to improve the economy of Shanxi, his efforts were limited by the fact that he himself had little formal training in economic or industrial theory. He also suffered from a lack of experienced, trained advisers capable of directing even moderately complicated tasks related to economic development. Because most of the educated staff that he did have access to were solidly entrenched within the landed gentry of Shanxi, it is possible that many of his officials may have deliberately sabotaged his efforts for reform, preferring that the peasants working their fields continue their cheap, traditional labour.
Throughout the rest of Yan's life he identified with the position of most Chinese conservatives at the time: Influence of Confucianism[ edit ] Yan was emotionally attached to Confucianism by virtue of his upbringing, and because he identified its values as a historically effective solution to the chaos and disorder of his time. He justified his rule via Confucian political theories and attempted to revive Confucian virtues as being universally accepted.
In his speeches and writing Yan developed an extravagant admiration for the virtues of moderation and harmony associated with the Confucian Doctrine of the Mean. Many of the reforms that Yan attempted were undertaken with the intention of demonstrating that he was a junzi, the epitome of Confucian virtue. He taught that everyone had a capacity for innate goodness, but that in order to fulfill this capacity people had to subordinate their emotions and desires to the control of their conscience.
He admired the Ming dynasty philosophers Lu Jiuyuan and Wang Yangmingwho disparaged knowledge and urged men to act on the basis of their intuition. Because Yan believed that human beings could only achieve their potentials through intense self-criticism and self-cultivation, he established in every town a Heart-Washing Society, whose members gathered each Sunday to meditate and listen to sermons based on the themes of the Confucian classics.
Everyone at these meetings was supposed to rise and confess aloud his misdeeds of the past week, inviting criticism from the other members. He appreciated the efforts of missionaries mostly Americans who maintained a complex of schools in Taigu to educate and modernize Shanxi.
He regularly addressed the graduating classes of these schools, but was generally unsuccessful in recruiting these students to serve his regime.
Yan supported the indigenous Christian church in Taiyuan, and at one time seriously considered using Christian chaplains in his army.
His public support of Christianity waned afterwhen he failed to come to the defense of Christians during anti-foreigner and anti-Christian demonstrations that polarized Taiyuan. He urged his subjects to place their faith in a supreme being that he called "Shangdi": Like Christianity, Yan Xishan Thought was permeated with the belief that, through accepting his ideology, people could become regenerated or reborn. He stated that the primary goal of the Heart-Washing Society was to encourage Chinese patriotism by reviving the Confucian church, leading foreigners to accuse him of attempting to create a Chinese version of Shinto.
Yan altered some of Sun's doctrines before disseminating them in Shanxi, formulating his own version of Sun's Three Principles of the People that replaced the principles of nationalism and democracy with the principles of virtue and knowledge.
During the May Fourth Movementwhen students in Taiyuan staged anti-foreign demonstrations, Yan warned that patriotism, like rainfall, was beneficial only when moderate. During the s he attempted to set up in every village a "Good People's Movement" in order to promote the values of Chiang Kai-shek 's New Life Movement.
These values included honesty, friendliness, dignity, diligence, modesty, thrift, personal neatness and obedience. Following this interpretation, Yan attempted to change the economy of Shanxi to become more like that of the USSRinspiring a scheme of economic "distribution according to labour".
When the threat of Chinese Communists became a significant threat to Yan's rule, he defended the Communists as courageous and self-sacrificing fanatics who were different from common bandits contrary to Kuomintang propaganda and whose challenge must be met by social and economic reforms that alleviated the conditions responsible for communism. Unlike Marx, Yan reinterpreted Communism to correct what he believed was Marxism 's chief flaw: Yan praised Marx for his analysis of the material aspects of human society, but professed to believe that there was a moral and spiritual unity of mankind that implied that a state of harmony was closer to the human ideal than conflict.
By rejecting economic determinism in favor of morality and free will, Yan hoped to create a society that would be more productive and less violent than he perceived communism to be, while avoiding the exploitation and human misery that he believed was the inevitable result of capitalism.
Yan himself blamed the failure of his ideology to become popular on the faults of his officials, charging that they abused their power and failed to explain his ideas to the common people. In general, the officials of Shanxi misappropriated funds intended to be used for propaganda, attempted to explain Yan's ideas in language too sophisticated for the common people and often behaved in a dictatorial manner that discredited Yan's ideology and failed to generate popular enthusiasm for his regime.
While he was in exile in Dalian inYan became aware of Japanese plans to invade Manchuriaand feigned collaboration with the Japanese in order to pressure Chiang Kai-shek into allowing him to return to Shanxi before warning Chiang of Japan's intent. Japan's subsequent success in taking Manchuria in terrified Yan, who stated that a major objective of his Ten-Year Plan was to strengthen Shanxi's defense against the Japanese.
In the early s he supported anti-Japanese riots, denounced the Japanese occupation of Manchuria as "barbarous" and "evil", publicly appealed to Chiang to send troops to Manchuria and arranged for his arsenal to arm partisans fighting the Japanese occupation in Manchuria. When the Manchukuo Imperial Army armed and led by the Japanese finally invaded Chahar inYan virtually declared war on the Japanese by accepting a position as "advisor" of the Suiyuan Mongolian Political Council, an organization created by the central government to organize opposition to the Japanese.
Apparently, many high-ranking Japanese in China believed that Yan and many others in the north were fundamentally pro-Japanese and would readily subordinate themselves to the Japanese in exchange for protection from Chiang Kai-shek.
Yan published an open letter in September in which he accused the Japanese of desiring to conquer all of China over the next two decades.
According to Japanese sources, Yan entered into negotiations with the Japanese inbut was never very enthusiastic about "autonomy" and rejected their overtures when he realized that they intended to make him their puppet.
Yan likely used these negotiations to frighten Chiang Kai-shek into using his armies to defend Shanxi, since he was afraid that Chiang was preparing to sacrifice northern China to avoid fighting the Japanese. If these were Yan's intentions they were successful, as Chiang assured Yan that he would defend Shanxi with his army in the event that it was invaded.
As Yan predicted, the Communists enjoyed massive popular support and, although they were outnumbered and ill-armed, succeeded in occupying the southern third of Shanxi in less than a month. The Communists' strategy of guerrilla warfare was extremely effective against, and demoralizing for, Yan's forces, who repeatedly fell victim to surprise attacks. The Communists in Shanxi made good use of cooperation supplied by local peasants to evade and easily locate Yan's forces.
When reinforcements sent by the central government forced the Communists to withdraw from Shanxi, the Red Army escaped by splitting into small groups that were actively supplied and hidden by local supporters. Yan himself admitted that his troops had fought poorly during the campaign. The KMT forces that remained in Shanxi expressed hostility to Yan's rule, but did not interfere with his governance. These Japanese-aligned forces seized the city of Bailingmiao in northern Suiyuan, where the pro-Japanese Inner Mongolian Autonomous Political Council maintained its headquarters.
Three months later the head of the Political Council, Prince De Demchugdongrubdeclared that he was the ruler of an independent Mongolia Mengguguoand organized an army with the aid of Japanese equipment and training. In August Prince De's army attempted to invade eastern Suiyuan, but it was defeated by Yan's forces under the command of Fu Zuoyi.
Following this defeat, Prince De planned another invasion while Japanese agents carefully sketched and photographed Suiyuan's defenses. When Fu responded that Prince De was merely a puppet of "certain quarters" and requested that he submit to the authority of the central government, Prince De's Mongolian and Manchurian armies launched another, more ambitious attack.
Prince De's 15, soldiers were armed with Japanese weapons, supported by Japanese aircraft and often led by Japanese officers Japanese soldiers fighting for Mengguguo were often executed after their capture as illegal combatants, since Mengguguo was not recognized as being part of Japan. Yan placed his best troops and most able generals, including Zhao Chengshou and Yan's son-in-law, Wang Jingguounder the command of Fu Zuoyi.
During the month of fighting that ensued, the army of Mengguguo suffered severe casualties. Fu's forces succeeded in retaking Bailingmiao on November 24 and he was considering invading Chahar before he was warned by the Japanese Kwantung Army that doing so would provoke an attack by the Imperial Japanese Army.
Prince De's forces repeatedly attempted to retake Bailingmiao, but this only provoked Fu into sending troops north, where he successfully seized the last of Prince De's bases in Suiyuan and virtually annihilated his army. After Japanese officers were found to be aiding Prince De, Yan publicly accused Japan of aiding the invaders. His victories in Suiyuan over Japanese-backed forces were praised by Chinese newspapers and magazines, other warlords and political leaders, and many students and members of the Chinese public.
He relocated his headquarters to a remote corner of the province, effectively resisting Japanese attempts to completely seize Shanxi. During the Second Sino-Japanese War, the Japanese made no less than five attempts to negotiate peace terms with Yan and hoped that he would become a second Wang Jingweibut Yan refused and stayed on the Chinese side. Alliance with the Communists[ edit ] After the failed attempt by the Chinese Red Army to establish bases in southern Shanxi in earlythe subsequent continued presence of Nationalist soldiers there and the Japanese attempts to take Suiyuan that summer, Yan became convinced that the Communists were lesser threats to his rule than either the Nationalists or the Japanese.
He then negotiated a secret anti-Japanese "united front" with the Communists in October and, after the Xi'an Incident two months later, successfully influenced Chiang Kai-shek to enter into a similar agreement with the Communists.
After establishing his alliance with the Communists Yan lifted the ban on Communist activities in Shanxi. By Taiyuan had become a gathering point for anti-Japanese intellectuals who had fled from BeijingTianjin and northeast China who readily cooperated with Yan, but he also recruited natives of Shanxi who were living across China regardless of their former political associations.
Some Shanxi officials attracted to Yan's cause in the late s later became important figures in the Chinese government, including Bo Yibo. This caused Yan to believe that a Japanese invasion of Shanxi was imminent, and he flew to Nanjing to communicate the situation to Chiang Kai-shek.
The Mongolian and Manchu forces were quickly routed, and Japanese reinforcements attempting to force their way through the strategic Nankou pass suffered heavy casualties. Overwhelming Japanese firepower—including artillery, bombers and tanks—eventually forced Yan's forces to surrender Nankou, after which Japanese forces quickly seized Suiyuan and Datong.
The Japanese then began the invasion of Shanxi in earnest. Li Fuying and other officers guilty of retreating from the enemy. He issued orders not to withdraw or surrender under any circumstances, vowed to resist Japan until the Japanese had been defeated and invited his own soldiers to kill him if he betrayed his promise.
But Chiang, whose Northern Expedition was proving successful, set his forces to destroying the Shanghai CCP apparatus and established an anti-Communist government at Nanjing in April There now were three capitals in China: A new policy was instituted calling on the CCP to foment armed insurrections in both urban and rural areas in preparation for an expected rising tide of revolution.
Unsuccessful attempts were made by Communists to take cities such as Nanchang, Changsha, Shantou, and Guangzhou, and an armed rural insurrection, known as the Autumn Harvest Uprising, was staged by peasants in Hunan Province. Mao was of peasant origins and was one of the founders of the CCP. The Communists had been expelled from Wuhan by their left-wing Kuomintang allies, who in turn were toppled by a military regime.
By all of China was at least nominally under Chiang's control, and the Nanjing government received prompt international recognition as the sole legitimate government of China. The Nationalist government announced that in conformity with Sun Yat-sen's formula for the three stages of revolution--military unification, political tutelage, and constitutional democracy--China had reached the end of the first phase and would embark on the second, which would be under Kuomintang direction.
Some of the harsh aspects of foreign concessions and privileges in China were moderated through diplomacy. The government acted energetically to modernize the legal and penal systems, stabilize prices, amortize debts, reform the banking and currency systems, build railroads and highways, improve public health facilities, legislate against traffic in narcotics, and augment industrial and agricultural production. Great strides also were made in education and, in an effort to help unify Chinese society, in a program to popularize the national language and overcome dialectal variations.
The widespread establishment of communications facilities further encouraged a sense of unity and pride among the people. The first was the gradual rise of the Communists.
Chiang Kai-shek was a militarist and former warlord who opposed reform but was associated with reform and established a system described as Confucian fascism. Chiang Kai-shek is Yue dialect, Chiang Kai-shek was regarded as a shrewd politician but a poor administrator. His life was defined by his battle against the Communists which took a variety of forms over the years. Chiang is sometimes called the man who lost China but in reality he never held it to begin with.
In his book The Generalissimo: Unfortunately for Chiang, Mao was better at it, and better at ruling the territory he controlled. Chiang's struggle to defeat the Japanese, only to lose the country to the Communists Chiang unified his country with the Northern Expedition of and presided over the Nanking decade, a period of economic and institutional development as well as considerable freedom that was cut short by the Japanese invasion of Chiang inspired powerful loyalty among his closest Chinese followers and had Western friends as well, not the least of whom was Henry Luce, publisher of Time magazine.
The son of a village salt merchant, he was raised by his widowed mother and began working at the age of nine after his father died. When he was 14, he entered an arranged marriage. He later obtained a divorce from wife. Chiang was impressed by Japanese discipline and sophistication and hoped to bring the same qualities to the Chinese army. He liked the Japanese winters and said that living in Japan gave him a fondness for "eating bitterness.
InChiang had spent three months in the USSR consulting, seeking cooperation and addressing the executive committee of the Comintern. In Junehe stood beside Sun Yat-sen on the platform as the Whampoa Military Academy, of which he would become superintendent, was opened. It is here that the soon-to-be-victorious Nationalist army was trained. It was made possible by a Russian gift of 2. Zhou Enlaiwho later become premier of China under the communists, was a political commissar at this academy.
After he converted from Buddhism to Methodism in he felt the Bible revealed God's plan for China. He said, "To my mind the reason we should believe in Jesus is that He was a leader of a national revolution.
In Shanghai, for example, he hired gangsters from the brutal Green Gang to kill thousands of students and labor organizers with purported ties to the Communists. He could also be quite extravagant. In Taiwan, he lived in a home with rare Amur leopard skins draped on the walls and a panda skin rug in front of the fireplace.
Seething with an inner violence that exploded in volcanic rages as a young man, once in power he succeeded in outwardly controlling it beneath a mask so rigid and cold that it isolated him even from his followers. Sexual rapacity was combined with puritan self-discipline, skills in political manoeuvre with bungling in military command, nationalist pride with retreatist instinct, threadbare education with mandarin pretension. The Generalissimo and the China He Lost. Perry Anderson, London Review of Books, February 9, ] "No other figure in the tangled constellation of the interwar Kuomintang acquires any relief in his story.
The reasons why Chiang could rise to power require a contextual explanation, however.Alternate History: What If China Became Nationalist?
They do not lie in his individual abilities. For these were, on any reckoning, very limited.
The extremes of his psychological make-up cohabited with his mediocrity as a ruler. He was a poor administrator, incapable of properly co-ordinating and controlling his subordinates, and so of running an efficient government. He had no original ideas, filling his mind with dog-eared snippets from the Bible.
Most strikingly, he was a military incompetent, a general who never won a really major battledecisive victories in the Northern Expedition that brought him to power going to other, superior commanders. What distinguished him from these were political cunning and ruthlessness, but not by a great margin. They were not enough on their own to take him to the top. The contrast between Nationalists and Communists was not just ideological. It was one of sheer talent.
The CCP produced not simply one leader of remarkable gifts, but an entire, formidable cohort, of which Deng was one among several. By comparison, the KMT was a kingdom of the blind.
The first was his regimental training in Japan, which made him the only younger associate of Sun Yat-sen with a military background, and so at the Whampoa Academy commanding at the start of his career means of violence that his rivals in Guangzhou lacked.
The second, and more important, was his regional background. Coming from the hinterland of Ningbo, with whose accent he always spoke, his political roots were in the ganglands of nearby Shanghai, with its large community of Ningbo merchants.
It was this base in Shanghai and Zhejiang, and the surrounding Yangtze delta region, where he cultivated connections in both criminal and business worlds, in what was by far the richest and most industrialised zone in China, that gave him his edge over his peers.
The military clique that ruled Guangxi, on the border with Indochina, were better generals and ran a more progressive and efficient government, but their province was too poor and remote for them to be able to compete successfully against Chiang.
Her English was better than her Chinese. Loves power, eats up publicity and flattery, pretty weak on her history. Can turn on charm at will and knows it. Even so Chiang Kai-shek and his wife had a notoriously tempestuous relationship.
KUOMINTANG, CHIANG KAI-SHEK AND MADAME CHIANG KAI-SHEK | Facts and Details
He converted to Christianity They had no children. Chiang had a son from his first, marriage, who later became leader of Taiwan. Chiang had a second, adopted son, from his second marriage to a woman he chased when he was 32 and she was 13 and who later got a doctorate at Columbia University in New York. It was said of Soong sisters: Soong Ching-ling, the wife of Sun Yat-sen. The third sister Soong Ai-ling, who married the banker H.
The Soong sisters were daughters of Charlie Soong, a Shanghai-based missionary turned publishing tycoon who made a fortune selling Bibles. He was taken by Methodist missionaries to North Carolina where he converted to Christianity all the Soong sisters were Christians.
Soong, Soong May-ling's eldest brother and the republic's finance minister, went to Harvard; his rival, the financier H. Kung, went to Oberlin and Yale. Madame Chiang Kai-shek and China InMadame Chiang Kai-shek came to her husband's rescue when he was held hostage by rebel troops sympathetic with the Communists.
She is also believed to have played a part in convincing her husband to form an alliance with the Communists to fight the Japanese. At one point, she led the Chinese air force. In the s Madame Chiang Kai-shek set up schools for orphans of the revolutionary army.
During the eight-year war with Japan, she visited combat units and hospitals. Inshe toured the U. Congress, trying to drum support for China in their struggle against the Japanese. In one speech she said, "The only thing oriental about me is my face.
She risks her life in the mud and chaos helping war victims and writes chatty letters back to a Wellesley classmate about the experience. She achieves her apotheosis not in China but in the US, on a prolonged lobbying tour seeking more aid in the fight against Japan: He was very honest and straightforward.
He wrote about how he felt, about how he controlled his sexual desire.
They also seem to show that his Christian faith — which has often been seen as a political ploy — was in fact genuine. Many people, including myself, thought Chiang Kai-shek was a fake Christian — that he did it to marry Mei-ling," explained Kuo. He read the Bible every day, he copied sentences from the Bible, he mentioned God, he asked for God's help — if not every day, then every other day.
Hengyang, if only God would help him to successfully defend the city. As Kuo explained, "He wrote, 'God, I have tried my best. She perhaps recognized its dangers and, according to Kuo, believed that "we should go out without leaving any traces, only ashes.
Chiang Kai-shek will never be a hero to anyone, and the list of his errors, miscalculations, and outright wrongs is likely to remain long.
But perhaps one day he will be perceived as a man who, in his own words, did his best.