The Cold War BeginsCommunism Spreads in East AsiaSection 330.3 Communism Spreads inEast Asia
LEQ: What did the Communist victorymean for China and the rest of EastAsia?
Communist forces led by Mao Zedong wona civil war in China in the wake ofWorld War II.• China’s peasant population supported thecommunists, who redistributed land to them.• People were also tired of the Nationalistgovernment’s reliance on support from the West.• Those who defied the new communist regimewere sent to labor camps or killed.
The Nationalists led by Jiang Jieshi were pushedto Taiwan when the communists won the war.• They ruled there under a one-party dictatorshipuntil the late 1980s.• Mainland China never recognized the island’sindependence.
• Mao called for collectivization of land and labor.• He led a program known as the Great LeapForward in which people were organized intocommunes and urged to increase theirproductivity.• In 1966, Mao launched the Cultural Revolution topurge China of the “bourgeois.” Educated peopleMao’s leadership led to major changes in China.• collectivization – the forced pooling of peasant land and labor in an attemptto increase productivity• Great Leap Forward – a Chinese Communist program from 1958 to 1960to boost farm and industrial output that failed miserably• Cultural Revolution – a Chinese Communist program in the late 1960s topurge China of non-revolutionary tendencies that caused economic and socialdamage
• He did not hesitate to havehis critics killed or sentaway to do manual labor.• His failed Great LeapForward program led tothe death of as many as55 million Chinese fromstarvation between 1959and 1961.Mao Zedong was a ruthless ruler.
• In fact, Soviets withdrew all aid from China in1960 due to border clashes and other disputes.• The United States, for its part, saw some valuein cooperating with China and set up formaldiplomatic relations with the communist nationin 1979.China’s conversion to communism seemedlike a victory for the Soviet Union, but inreality the two were uneasy allies.
• The North Koreancommunist dictatorKim Il Sung calledfor reunificationin 1950.• His forces overranmost of South Korea.After World War II, the U.S. and the Sovietsdivided Korea temporarily.Kim Il Sung – North Korean dictator and ally ofthe Soviet Union
• This force stopped theNorth Koreans at thePusan Perimeter andthen advanced north.• Next, Mao sent a hugeChinese force to help theNorth Koreans, and all theUN gains were lost.The United States led a UN force to helpSouth Korea.
• The two sides signed anarmistice in 1953.• Troops remained on either sideof the demilitarized zonenear the 38thparallel, thedividing line between Northand South Korea.The war became a stalemate.demilitarized zone – an area with no militaryforces
The two Koreas developed very differentlyafter the armistice.• The situation was similar to that of Germany.• The capitalist South Korea experienced a boomand rising standards of living while thecommunist North Korea went into decline.• South Korea was led by a series of dictators andwas not democratic, however. The two Koreasnever reunited.
South Korearecovered andeventuallytransitioned todemocracy.• The growing middle class andstudent protests led to the firstdirect elections in South Koreain 1987.• Most Koreans want to see theirnation reunited.North Koreaclung tohard-linecommunism.• Economic growth slowed there inthe late 1960s.• The government built a personalitycult around its dictator.
Communist victory meant communist rule inChina and in North Korea, as well as theintroduction of a wild card in the con- flictbetween the United States and the Soviet Union.LEQ: What did the Communist victory mean forChina and the rest of East Asia?