Chinese Wars of Aggression
China is a state found in the eastern tip of the Asian continent. It’s bordered by the East China Sea to the east, Yellow Sea, South China Sea, Korean Bay and it squeezed between Vietnam and North Korea. The state also shares a border with India. China covers an area of 9.6 million2 kilometers. The ancient China was ruled through dynasties with the earliest known, the Xia Dynasty, dating back to 21st B.C. The subsequent history of China dates back to more than four millennia.
A map of China
Chinese Wars of Aggression
The first war between China and another superior nation occurred in 1840 and it involved it and Britain of which had smuggled gargantuan quantities of opium China and the latter country reacted by forbidding the trade of the drug on its territory. Britain reacted back by instigating a war against it that was called the Opium War. Britain initiated what would be subsequent wars that swept through China for a period spanning twenty-five years: The Northern Expeditionary War (Northern March), The Agrarian Revolution, The Resistance War Against Japan and The War of Liberation.
The Northern Expeditionary War (Northern March)
The Northern Expedition War occurred in 1926 to 1928 although some reports indicate it started in 1924.The war was launched by Kuomintang and the main objective was to bring together China and that feat would be achieved by terminating the ruling of the warlords. The opponents were Beiyang administration, Fengtian clique and the Zhili clique. The Kuomintang had a quarter million while the three opponents had a strong pack of fighters that were more than two million. This war was launched in the headquarters of Kuomintang that was situated in Guangdong.
The rehearsal for the war was the declaration by the Kuomintang about the arrangements for striking and demonstrating over the Western’s warlords that were in China and t imposed by the Western. There were also other factors that contributed like the merging of Kuomintang and Communist Party of China that came into being after the confrontation that was in Zhongstan. The war leaders and the fighters hailed from Whampoa Military Academy. The major targets of the war were: Sun Chuan fang who ruled in the east coast, hang Zuolin who ruled Manchuria and Wu Peifu who ruled the Central Plain.
More than 100,000 fighters from the National Revolutionary Army were lectured by their commander Chiang in 1926.With the advantage of being kitted out with powerful German and Russian weapons, they easily triumphed over the fighters of Chuan fang and Peifu and submerged the fighters into their army. After the Zhili clique was triumphed over, the commander, Chiang, conducted a cleansing whereby all the Communists were expelled from Kuomintang. Since many people perished in the cleansing, there were different opinions from the fighters and after the separation of right wingers from the leftists. The result was that the two armies were left in disorderly. The disorderly gave the warlords an ample chance and like a phoenix, they rose from the ashes. Sun Chuan fang shepherded an army of a hundred thousand fighters in a bid to reclaim the lost territory (Tetsuya, 1974).
Three Kuomintang armies (Route Armies) counter-measured. One Route Army was hailed from Jiangsu Province, mother Army from the west of Jiangsu Province and the third Army from Xuzhou. The fact that the Nationalists were divided both politically and leading, gave the armies that were marshaled both by Xu and Sun an ample opportunity to attack. This, combined with the Nationalists’ armies was poorly stationed spelt luck for the great infamous war termed the Warlord Era. The First Route Army that was stationed in Jiangsu was attacked on July while the second one was forced to retreat southwards via the Long-Hai railway channel. Eventually, the third Route Army threw the towel after the merciless massacre by the Warlord Armies. Unable to believe of the defeat, Chiang lay off the Army commander and made a counteroffensive but unfortunately was defeat and feeling foolish, he quit the post of the Nanking administration (Ernest, 1950).
The significance of the Northern Expedition
As the war came to a halt in 1928, it was significant to the advancement of China because it terminated the disarray that was in the then China (the Beiyang administration) and brought about an orderly and efficient administration
The Agrarian Revolution
The Agrarian was led by the workers and the poor people who had no land or had a very small piece of land so as to prove that they had also might and also to shatter the fortification that of the previous political and military power, fight the people who owned large tracts of lands, the holistic way of life, the aged and previous administrators, the town officials and the “shylocks” who were in town. They were divided in to two main groups of which were propped up by the various workers’ unions. Compliance was denied to the villagers’ gentry. However, the Wuhan administration countered the organizations of the rag-tag fighters and unarmed them; conducted searches in many schools and in the haste, approximately twenty people were killed and many others injured.
Fearing reprisal from the armies loyal to the Wuhan government, the ringleaders of the workers’ and peasants’ fighters camouflaged. On the other side, since they never won the battle that they had declared against the huge landowners, the faced the rule of law for the disorderly that they had brought and the instead the ones that were fought against won the war. Then, the government landed them a blow after it declared that,”…they have been misled by their leaders, have not kept themselves within the limits of law and order they should, according to the resolutions passed by the Central Government, be prohibited until they are organized” page 621-623 (The Labor Monthly, 1927).That report heralded the fight against the Revolution and soon Changsha followed took the message. The Wuhan administration countered the revolution movement and won over them in the summer of 1927 (Rana, 2005).
The significance of the Agrarian Revolution
The Agrarian Revolution terminated the one millennium old rights of the feudalism huge possessors of land.
The Resistance War against Japan
The war that was fought between Japan and China and on which China resisted vehemently was called the Second Sino-Japanese War. Before this second war, the two warring countries had fought another war, the First Sino –Japanese war and it was fought for one year: between 1894 and 1895.It is seen as the biggest global war because it involved different nations who had sided with China for military support such as United States, Germany and the then Soviet Union. The Second Sino-Japan war was fought for eight years between the July of 1937 and September in 1945.It was between Japan and China. The reason behind the war, or so in the viewpoint of the Japan’s government, was that the Chinese government turned down its plea to conduct a look out for the army fighters who had gone missing and in contrast, took it as a motive to launch an attack at its interior (Feuerwerker Albert, 1961).
In real sense, Japan wanted to suppress China both in the military forces and the politics so that they could have the large tracts of raw material resources, food and labor resources, and also secure a ready market for its finished produced of which had been prohibited from many nations in the West because of the Depression tariffs.
A portion of the Pacific 2nd World War arena
There were many small-scale wars that were fought between the two countries but the Marco Polo event heralded the start of the second Sino-Japanese War. The Japanese army had thought that they would triumph over China in a period of about three months but the war drag on for far more than they had anticipated. The major causalities of the war on the Chinese side were innocent citizens. Perhaps this was due to that statement that was delivered by Chiang Kai-shek in Lushan that,”…once war breaks out, every person, young or old, in the north or in the south, must take the responsibility of resisting Japan and defending our homeland.”The ultimate of the war came when Japan was triumphed over as the Second World War drew to a halt.
The trend of the war
In 1930, there was a large-scale civil war whereby the various warlords fought against each other and therefore the Chinese Government was busy calming down the situation back at home to concentrate over the international unrest. Therefore, this gave the Japanese army an ample chance to launch the attacks (Stuart, 1992). Then, came the blow of the partitioning of the Manchukuo State and the military force of China was left frail and it lead to China asking for alms from the League of Nations. The Great Wall was invaded in 1933 and the Rehe Province came under the control of Japan. Then later, in 1935, China was forcefully made to sign the He-Umeze Treaty that prohibited Kuomintang from running any military operations in the area of Hebei.
Still in 1935, Japan pressured China to sign Chin-Doihara Treaty that flushed the Kuomintang from the area of Chahar. However, that was the foretaste of the war, that was the worse and the worst had yet to come. Having captured Beiping and Tianjin from the bad militarily kited out rag-tag fighters, the Japanese fighters felt they had so far accomplished much and so they drew back feeling that they couldn’t make the war big. Chiang Kai-shek mistook the drawing back for the end of the war and so he marshaled the air force fighters and the army in a bid to launch assaults to the marines belonging to Japan that were situated in Shanghai and that fight heralded what was the Shanghai Battle. Once again, the Shanghai came under the control of China but a determined Japanese army reclaimed it and Nanking and Shanxi were simultaneously captured later. Confident with their many victories, the Japanese army continued with the fighting but was finally triumphed over in Taierzhuang. There was a gargantuan loss to Japan in form of economical power and the fighters and therefore the Japanese air force were commanded from the headquarters to target the civilians in the fight. As depicted in the picture below, the Chinese innocent civilians suffered greatly.
Some of the fatalities after Japan bombed Chongqing in 1939.
Japan had a heck of time as it tried to bring together the seized territories and so it was compelled to come up with a approach of establishing Japanese ally administrations that would never go against the interests of Japan in China. An example was the Nanjing Nationalist Government that was spearheaded by Wang Jingwei, the then leader in the Kuomintang. They territories were futile because of the massacres that the Japanese army had conducted. Either side was reluctant to make verdicts that would lead them to be like the triumph of Nazi Germany on Western Europe and the ultimate collapse of France (Danke, 2009).
On the August of 1945,an atomic bomb was dropped in Japan by a B-29 Stealth bomber in Hiroshima and the Soviet Union suit the example by launching assaults on the Japanese armies in Manchuria. Three days after the first atomic bomb, the United States dropped another one on 9th August in 1945, the infamous Nagasaki. Crashed down, Japan surrendered and the surrendering agreement was signed on 2nd September in 1945 in the USS Missouri.
A scene above showing the surrendering of Japanese troops after the agreement
Significance of the second Sino-Japanese War
After the war ended in 1945,the People’s Republic of China was with the dignity of being a mighty militarily nation but unfortunately it had to nurse its weak economy and its citizens faced starvation due to the impact left by the litany of bombings. The principles of Marxism and Leninism were introduced to China where the ethics were interacting with the people, being employed together and imagining their thoughts. The communism was also popularized where the membership escalated from barely 100,000 to more than 1.2 million. Shortly later, there was a Chinese civil war that was fought between the communists and the Nationalists and after being defeated in 1949, the Nationalists were marginalized to Taiwan and China henceforth became a communist nation. (Richard, 2000)
Some scholars view that the real cause of the war was loosely connected to the First Sino-Japanese War that occurred back in 1894.It was claimed that Japan attacked China and triumphed over the then Qing Dynasty and in the haste, not only was Taiwan was give up to Japan forcefully but also Korea was partitioned in what was termed as the Treaty of Shimonoseki
The Chinese War of Liberation
A liberation war is a war that’s fought with the objective of bringing about liberties and privileges to a specific country, state or a particular group of people.
The Chinese War of Liberation was a war that was fought between the armies of People’s Republic of China, rather Kuomintang,( Chinese Nationalist Party, CNP)and the armies of the Communist Party of China(CPP).The war began in 1927 but it was never in large scale until after 1946 where it run up to 1950.It was the principles that made the war to begin whereby: the Nationalists wanted to be the governing party and (or) the fact that Chiang Kai-shek attempted to exterminate the adherents of the Communist Party of China (UtleyJonathan, 2005).
The Communists were led by He Long, Zhu De, Mao Zedong and Peng Dehuai among other leaders .On the other side, the Nationalists were led by Chiang Kai-shek, Chen Cheng, Yan Xishan, He Yingqin among other leaders. The war was fought until at last, the eruption of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War terminated it in the Xi’an occasion where Chiang Kai-shek was compelled to counter the attacking Japanese armies by forming the Second United Front.
The demonstrations of the Communist Party of China dated back to the early 1920s where the armies had gone back to the interior and kept in low waters and they increased to become an army that was referred to as the Nanchang Uprising. The Nanchang Uprising went ahead to include the various rag-tag fighters that had been formed by the workers’ unions and the peasants. The strong army took control of the large parts of the southern part of China. However, the Kuomintang fought against the gathered armies and this led to what would be later termed as the Chinese Civil War that ended after a decade.
A scene from the Liberation War
The various Nationalists members led by Wang Jingwei, Feng Yuxiang and Yan Xishan declared and conducted five anti-communist operations against the armies. Fortunately, the first four were futile but the fourth one was a bit triumphant and luck was in the communists’ side because the anti-communist armies were greatly wiped as they attempted to cross into the Soviet Chinese Republic (Tse-Tung Mao, 2000).
A scene from one of the campaigns in Pingjin
The fifth anti-communist campaign was effective in that the Kuomintang cut off the supply off the basic necessities in the Jiangxi Soviet by constructing block structures whereby each of the block structure was partitioned from the next by a distance of about five miles. On October, the pro-communists passed through one of the vast distances that partitioned one block structure fro the next and even thought they were seen by a warlord loyal to Chiang Kai-shek, they were never pursued and they made they run for their dear lives to Jiangxi (Douglas, 2006).
That escapement went for one year and the area covered was more than 12000 kilometers .It is the so called Long March and it comprised of approximately 100,000 pro-communists though by the time that they reached Shaanxi, they had been decimated to about 8,000 of the total. The Long March came to a halt after the communists reached the countryside of Shaanxi. The army that was loyal Zhang Guotao was unfortunate because in the path they took, they were greatly decimated by two armies that were both loyal to Ma Clique and Chiang Kai-shek. That backtracking rendered Mao the administrator of the Communist Party of China.
A communist leader addressing some Long March survivors
The Significance of the War of Liberation
The consequence of the war was that it leads to the division the larger China into two parts namely: the Republic of China which is currently referred to as Taiwan but it also comprises of Penghu, Matsu, Kinmen and other islands. On the other side, the People’s Republic of China which is controls the Chinese mainland and the Hainan Island.
A map showing the two divisions
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