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Communists Take Power in China

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Presentation on theme: "Communists Take Power in China"— Presentation transcript:

1 Communists Take Power in China
Communists vs. Nationalists

2 During and After WWII During WWII – China fought with the Allies
Japan occupied and devastated most of China’s cities China’s death toll (10-22 million) was second to Russia’s million) 1945 – opposing Chinese armies faced each other

3 Mao Zedong – Communist Leader
Stronghold in North Western China (during WW2) Organized peasants for guerrilla warfare against Japan – was highly successful Peasants gave their loyalty to communists because they were taught better food production. 1945 – Communists controlled much of Northern China.

4 Jiang Jieshi – Nationalists
Dominated southwestern China Had an army of 2.5 million men – the U.S. sent the Nationalists about $1.5 billion to fight the Japanese. Corrupt officers took most of the money and did little to fight the Japanese. After Japan surrendered – the Communists and Nationalist resumed fighting each other

5 Civil War At first the Nationalists had the advantage: a larger army, and $2 billion in aid from the U.S. However, they did little to gain popular support. Nationalist soldiers left for the Communist party as the economy fell. 1949 – China’s major cities fell to the well-trained Red (Communist) forces.

6 People’s Republic of China
- Red forces were well-trained and Mao pro-mised to return the land to the peasants. Jiang’s left-over army fled south. Oct – Mao con-trolled the country and proclaimed the People’s Republic of China

7 Next…. Jiang and other Nationalist leaders fled to the island of Taiwan (Formosa). This became Nationalist China. Mao’s victory fueled U.S. anti-Communist feelings. U.S. feelings got worse when China and Soviets signed a Treaty of Friendship. Many people in the U.S. thought the Communists wanted to conquer the world!

8 Two Chinas: Taiwan = Nationalist China; 13,000 sq. miles
Mainland = People’s Republic of China; 3.5 mill. sq. mi. Their existence and conflicting international loyalties intensified the Cold War.

9 The Superpowers (U.S. and Soviet Union) React:
U.S.: helped Jiang in Taiwan set up a Nationalist government (Republic of China). Tried to halt Soviet expansion in Asia Soviets: gave financial, military, and technical aid to Communist China The Chinese and Soviets pledged to come to each other’s defense if either was attacked.

10 Communist China Expands: Tibet
: Brutal assault and take-over of Tibet China promised autonomy to those who followed the Dalai Lama. Late 1950s – China tightened control and the Dalai Lama fled to India.

11 There was a failed revolt in Tibet
India welcomed Tibetan refugees Resentment builds between India and China 1962: They clashed briefly over the unclear border Resentment continues to this day

12 **** Learn 360 “War Comes to Tibet” 3:35
No notes – just view

13 A New “Mandate of Heaven”
Mandate of Heaven justified rebellion against an unjust, tyrannical, or incompetent ruler. If a rebellion was successful in overthrowing the emperor, then it was a sign that he had lost the Mandate of Heaven and the rebel leader had gained it.

14 In addition, unlike the hereditary Divine Right of Kings, the Mandate of Heaven did not depend upon royal or even noble birth. Any successful rebel leader could become emperor with Heaven's approval, even if he was born a peasant. Failing Leader: Jiang Jieshi Rebel leader who gained “Mandate” = Mao Zedong

15 Mao’s Brand of Marxist Socialism
There were two parallel organizations: Communist Party and the national government. Mao heads both until 1959. Mao was determined to reshape China’s economy 80% of people lived in rural areas – but owned no land. Instead 10% of the rural population was controlled 70% of the farmland.

16 Agrarian Reform Law of 1950 Mao seized the holdings of the landlords.
Mao killed more than a million of the landlords who resisted. He then divided the land among the peasants. To further socialist principles – the govt. forced peasants to join collective farms ( households).



19 Industry and Business 1953 – Five Year Plan that set high production goals for industry. 1957 – China’s output of coal, cement, steel and electricity had increased dramatically

20 The Great Leap Forward Early 1958 – to expand the success of the First Five Year Plan Called for larger collective farms (communes) End of 1958 – 26,000 communes were created. One commune = 15,000; supported 25,000 people

21 Communal Life Peasants worked the land together.
Ate in communal dining rooms Slept in dormitories Communal nurseries for children Owned nothing! Only the state profited by their work – they had no incentive to work hard.

22 Great Leap – A Failure A Giant Step Backward
Poor planning Inefficient ‘back-yard’ industries hampered growth 1961 – massive crop failures = famine Killed 20 million people Program ended “Back Yard” smelters

23 The Great Famine Communes were over populated and not enough food to feed everyone. Massive crop failures Distribution of food was not organized – lots of waste. Preferential treatment to ‘favorites’ in communes.

24 People hid provisions. Mao refused to accept the truth. The rest of the world was not aware of the famine because of China’s “isolationism.”


26 ******** You Tube: “China Under Mao – Great Leap Forward” 12:57

27 Relationship with Soviet Union
Late 1950s – relationship with Soviet Union starts to crumble. No more spirit of cooperation between the two. Each sought to lead the worldwide Communist movement. Faced numerous territorial disputes over longest shared border.

28 New Policies and Mao’s Response
Mao reduced his role in government after the Great Leap failure and break from Soviet Union. Others moved away from Mao’s strict socialist ideas: they lived in their own homes. People sold crops they grew on small private plots. Factory workers could get wage increases and promotions.

29 Cultural Revolution Mao thought new economic policies weakened the Communist goal of social equality. He was determined to revive the revolution 1966 – Urged young people to “learn revolution by making revolution.”

30 Red Guards Millions of high school and college students left their classrooms and formed militia units. They led the Cultural Revolution Goal: to establish a society of peasants and workers in which all were equal.

31 New “Hero” Was the peasant who worked with his/her hands.
Intellectual and artistic activity was useless and dangerous. Process: they shut down colleges and schools. Targeted anyone who resisted the regime.

32 Intellectuals had to “purify” themselves by doing hard labor in remote villages.
Children turned in their parents, teachers, doctors – any one they thought ‘subversive.’ Thousands were executed or imprisoned. Their widespread chaos threatened farm production and closed down factories. Civil war seemed possible. 1968 – Even Mao admitted the Cultural Revolution had to stop.

33 Learn 360: “Cultural Revolution in China” 5:06

34 Zhou Enlai Chinese Communist party founder and premier since 1949, began to restore order. Red Guards were exiled to the countryside; others were arrested and some executed. While China was trying to become stable, the Cold War continued to rage.

35 Assignment: Answer the following questions: Due next class. How did the Chinese Communists increase their power during WWII? What actions did the Nationalists take during WWII? 3. What was the goal of the Cultural Revolution?

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