The Social Impacts of World War II On China

Three months after the defeat of Germany, the Soviet Union marshaled its troops to fight against Japan. The attack followed an agreement at the Yalta Conference. Initially, the Soviet army invaded Manchuria, spelling an end to the Manchukuo puppet state. As a result, the Japanese settlers were compelled to flee back to their native country. Also, the Soviet Union destroyed the industrial base that the Japanese had built in Manchuria.

After the dismantling of the industry, the Communists, who were allied to the Soviet Union, transformed Manchuria into a base for their troops. Once the Second World War was over, the Nationalists, led by Chiang Kai-shek under the Kuomintang (KMT) party, resumed their civil war. The two parties had temporarily joined forces to fight against their common enemy, Japan. During the World war, the support for the Communist forces increased considerably among the Chinese, while the KMT became weaker.

The Social Impacts of World War II On China

In June 1946, the war between the Communists and the KMT broke out in earnest. Eventually, the Communists prevailed over the KMT, despite the latter receiving support from the US. Having won, the Communists established the People’s Republic of China (PRC) on the mainland in 1949. On the other hand, the KMT moved to the island of Taiwan.

During World War II, the western countries in the Allied forces promised to grant the Soviet Union several military bases based in China. However, this was not fulfilled due to the victory of the Communists. At the same time, a contentious blame game ensued in the US after the KMT lost to the Communists.

The sudden outbreak of the Korean War diverted the attention of the PRC on Taiwan. The US took advantage of this and increased their support for Chiang Kai-shek. Regardless, the two regions intermittently clashed for a period of three decades. Although Taiwan singly declared the end of the conflict in 1991, no formal deal between the two exists. Rather, the PRC still perceives Taiwan as a breakaway province and has publicly adopted an opposing stance towards the independence of Taiwan.

The Chen-Chiang conventions have significantly reduced the tensions between China and Taiwan. Likewise, the visit to China by President Nixon in 1972 improved the relationship between the US and China. Nonetheless, some friction persists between the two states, especially regarding the Cold War and the ideologies of Communism.

 

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