War and Revolution in China and Vietnam

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War and Revolution in China and Vietnam

The Qing dynasty fell because its former leader, Piyu in 1912, failed to protect the Chinese civilization from foreign invaders. This caused military leaders to step up and take charge in political and military issues. Bankers and merchants were seond in charge of politics, and they were favored by the warlords and middle-class politicians. University students, teachers, and independent intellectuals played also played a role in politics while also creating new ideologies to rebuild the civilization.These leaders formed large groups/clans in different regions in order to protect their territory, dominate, and expand. Not all of the regions were powerful, but there were a few regions that were strong. Japan’s entry to dominate China overpowered all of the separate groups. (Theme 3/5)

The May the Fourth Movement was supposed to make China a liberal democracy declining Confucianism, but it failed because China faced so many problems after the fall of the Qing dynasty. SunYat-sen was the leader of the Revolutionary Alliance, but he lacked power and support which was mainly in the urabn trading centers on the south and central coast of China. He resigned giving power to Yuan Shikhai. Japan gained dominance over China and had a great influence on them. Japan gave Yuan a list of twenty one demands making China a Japanese protectorate. Yuan ignored the demands, and on May 4, 1919, there was a large protest against Japan. The Chinese wanted to end the rule of warlords, and they came up with different solutions. Some wanted to spread Marxist theories and end the Western influences. In 1921, Marxists in China started the Communist party gaining support form the Soviet Union. (Theme 2/3)

During the 1920s, the Guomindang (Chinese Nationalist Party) under Sun Yat-sen came to power.They had ideology on the strong centralized governmnet and social reforms for peasants and workeres. They focused more on political and international issues and less on internal social concerns. Businesspeople, merchants, warlords, criminals, and the Soviet Union were their main supporters. The Soviet Union created and alliance with the Guomindang in 1924, and together they had a very strong military. Because they were so ignorant of China’s economic problems and their people, many peasants live in very poor conditions. (Theme 1/3/5)

After Sun Yat-sen’s death, Chiang Kai-shek became the leader of the nationalsit party, and he defeated many warlords earning the title of China’s ruler by the late 1920s. In 1927, he turned against his Communist allies starting a civil war that did not end until 1949. Mao Zedong was the leader of the Communists in China, and they had been attacked many times by Chiang Kai-shek. The Communists were forced by the Nationalsits into different parts of China which then lead to a Japanese invasion into the ongoing civil war. The nationalists allied again with the Communists, and they defeated the Japanese. The Communists also gained the support of peasant policies, and the Communist party in China became stronger because of their victory. (Theme 3/5)

In 1949, the Communists gained power in China. They focused a lot on social reform and economic development. They were able to rule the people with common traditons and have their own political organizations. An army was also very important to them, and they were able to build up a strong military. They were able to fight in the Korean War saving a piece of Korean land. They supported Vietnamese liberation movement. The Communists were very close to the Soviet Union until the 1950s when they had a border disputes and disagreements in Stalin’s leadership. (Theme 2/3)

Mao Zedong was powerful leader, and he had a great amount of support because he improved healthcare and education and had land reforms. The Great Leap Forward was started in 1958 by Mao and his supporters to restore China’s base. Industrialization aimed to create self-reliant peasant communities, but it turned out to be an economic disaster causing a famine to break out in China. They were able to slow the growing population down by introducing birth control and by limiting the number of children a family could have. The Great Leap ended in 1960; Mao Zedong lost his position, but still was the head of the Central Committee. A pragmatist, Zhou Enlai, came to power after Mao Zedong. (Theme 1 / 2)

Women became in important role in society. “Women hold up half the heavens.” Many women took part in rebellions and revolts such as the Taiping Rebellion, the Boxer Revolt, and the 1911 revolution. Mao Zedong had a huge impact on giving more rights to women and eliminating foot-binding. Women did not have to commit to forced marriages, and they were able to have more legal rights. Female seclusion ended, and many oppurtunities in seeking and education and career. (Theme 4/5)

Mao Zedong started the Cultural Revolution in 1965 thinking that he could take over the pragmatists. He failed in 1968, and the pragamtists opened China to Western influences and not political reform. The Communists helped China redistribute their wealth, and they were able to improve living conditions and standard when they were in charge. (Theme 2)

The French was always involved with Vietnam, and they had always wanted to conquer them. Vietnam had Chinese influences on them like Confucianism. Their leader, Gia Long, was a strong Confucian, and when the French tried to convert the Vietnamese to Christian, he punished the Vietnamese Christians. The French became angry at Long, and took control over Vietnam. Food consumption by peasants dropped and Vietnam became the world leading rice producer in the 1900s and 1930s. (Theme 1/2/3/4)

In 1941, Japan was stationed in France. The Communist dominated resistence movement (Viet Minh) fought the Japanese during the liberation wars against France. Vo Nguyen Giap was the leader when Vietnam was declared independent. But, the French were still stationed in the south, the area that Vietnam had no control of. There the French gained colonial rule and worked their way up to Vietnam and defeated them. (Theme 3)

Vietnam had always been unified even before the European arrival. But the French rule kept increasing Vietnamese dominance over related peoples, and it intensified the Vietnamese identity by reminding them of the tradition of resisting foreign rulers. They continuously fought against the French, and they tried to come up with agreements. But they French would not cooperate, and they took over everything. The Vietnames Communist party was the only thing that survived. (Theme 2/3)

The promise of an election in Vietnam was not kept making Ngo Dinh Diem the president of the southern government. He had rigged the election so that he could legitimize his becoming of president. The communists wanted to overthrow Diem, and the United States approved to help with the war. The U.S was able to take Diem down, but the fighting still went on between the Communists. They pulled back American troops in 1970, and the Communists gained power of southern Vietnam in 1975. (Theme 3)

It was hard for the communists to rebuild Vietnam. They were isolated so it was hard to get help from other countries, and they had border disputes with China. The economic growth was prohibited because they had a highly centralized government. They were not introduced to liberalization in their economy until the 1980s, and they started to develop a relationship with the U.S. (Theme 3)

China and Vietnam went through dramatic changes during the wars and revolutions. Communism took over any former regimes, and social classes slowly diminished. Women were able to gain more rights, and education was improved. Confucianism was lost in both countries. But things still remained the same in both countries as well. The new societies still retained many belief and ideals from there culture.

Theme 1: Interactions between Humans and the Environment

Theme 2: Development and Interactions of Cultures

Theme 3: State Building, Expnasion, and Conflict

Theme 4: Creation, Expansion, and Interaction of Economic Systems

Theme 5: Development and Transformationof Social Structure





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