Chinease History. Theme 1 - Government

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  • Created on: 31-03-18 16:43
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  • Chinese History: Theme 1 - Government
    • Problems Facing the PRC
      • Aftermath of the 1946-49 Civil War
        • Goodwill generated to the Communists, who showed they were capable of effective organisation
          • Greatly strengthened Mao's position
        • Mao intended to restore stability by making political opposition impossible
        • More cities started to fall under Mao's authority as the Reds expanded
      • State of industry, agriculture and infastructure
        • Short term
          • Industrial output dropped to only 25% of its pre-war level due to Japanese seizure of productive areas, and Nationalists scorched-earth tactics
          • Lack of any food supply due to the conscription of peasants
          • Hyperinflation by 1945, devastating finances
        • Long Term
          • China was mainly an agricultural country with outdated machines and tactics
          • China was yet to industrialise, and their most advanced industrial areas in Manchuria were under Soviet control
          • The economic infrastructure was underdeveloped, and devastated by bombing raids and little maintenance
    • Creation of a political system
      • Government Organisation
        • Common Program
          • Approved by the newly established Supreme state body Central People's Government in 1949
          • Temporary constitution to guide China through the next 5 years
          • Declared that China had transformed into a new society, with a wide range of personal freedoms
          • They gave the army and the police the right to suppress counter-revolutionary activities
          • Declared a transition period of co-operation between the working class and the Bourgeois, as China wasn't ready for Socialism
        • 1954 Constitution
          • Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC)
            • Advisory body to the NPC
          • National Peoples Congress (NPC)
            • New legislature that rubber-stamped Politburo decisions
          • State Council
            • Took over functions of the Central Peoples Government (CPG)
            • Drafted and Approved oonsitutions
            • Passed laws
      • Role of the Party and PLA
        • Communist Party
          • Leading CCP members held key positions in the state and the army
            • Zhou Enlai was State Council premier from 1949
          • Mass participation was encouraged so that ordinary people play a role in the party
          • Employed citizens belonged to a work unity (danwei) ran by a Party cadre
        • Peoples Liberation Party
          • Worlds largest army, with 5 million men in 1950 and using over 40% of state budget
          • The size reduced over time, and with it it became more professional, advanced and less egalitarian
          • A means of enforcing government control in the regions, achieving a Great Power status for China
      • Mao's Position in the Party
        • Mao became party leader in 1943 as a result of the rectification campaign, and then head of state in 1949
        • This gave him great power, but due to the collective leadership it it wasn't absoulute
        • Set the pace and direction of key policies
        • Main Ideas
          • Nationalism - free China from foreign exploitation that had undermined stability
          • Continuation of the revolution through each generation
          • Involve the ordinary people in discussing policies
          • Mass Mobilisation of the people to achieve economic targets
      • Democratic Centralism
        • Democratic element was theoretical, as the CCP controlled elections at lower regions
        • Decisions made at top levels by senior officials
    • Dealing with Opposition
      • Reunification Campaigns 1949-50
        • Guangdong
          • Coastal Province and GMD heartland during last months of civil war
          • Capitulated to PLA within 2 weeks
        • XinJiang
          • GMD subdued by conquest and negotiation
          • Long March Veteren to run local CCP and army unit
        • Tibet
          • Intended to resist Communism, despite Britain having little interest to protect it
          • Took 6 months to conquer, after PRC began a campaign to destroy Tibetan identity by bringing in Han settlers and promoting Chinese lifestyle
      • Terror against opponents
        • Labelling
          • Every citizen was given a class label based on their background, determining their fate
          • 60 labels divided into good, middle and bad, soon simplified into red and black
        • 1950-51 Great Terror
          • Korean War gave Mao an excuse to attack those in China who stood in their way
          • Suggested that killing 1/1000 of local populations in each area was an acceptable target
          • March 1951 - killings were extended to enemies within the CCP
          • Young Party Activists were forced to watch mass executions to immerse them in the revolution
          • Death toll as high as 2 million
      • 1951-2 The 3 and 5 Antis movement
        • Three Anti's
          • Targeted corruption, waste and delay in the government and party
          • Mass meetings to denounce managers and officials were held, and if found guilty they were issued humiliating confessions
          • Small-scale crimes were referred to as flies, while large-scale corruption referred as tigers
        • Five Anti's
          • Widened in 1952 to include bribery, tax evasion, theft of state property, fraud and economic espionage
          • Denunciation boxes sped up process of finding suspects
          • The majority of victims were fined, which was a way of destroying the old business class by removing their wealth
      • Laogai system
        • Soviet experts brought in to manage the new labour camp
        • 2 million prisoners by 1953,  half of which were forced labourers
        • Had economic value, contributing 700 million yuan in industrial products
        • 9/10 were political prisoners
        • Prisoners underwent 'thought reform' which put them through self-criticism and indoctrination meetings
      • Hundred Flowers Campaign 1957
        • Mao called to 'let a hundred flowers boom, and a hundred schools of thought content' in 1956
        • Mao called for an open debate, influenced be de-Stalinisation and to win over intellectuals
        • There was a lack of response, till Mao engaged on a tour to engage with the peasants. Afterwards, floods of criticism came in
        • Mao soon halted the debate, accused the critics as Rightists who intended to destroy the revolution, and launched an Anti-Rightist campaign
        • Mao's grip on the CCP tightened, but he lost support from the intellectuals forever
    • Korean War 1950-53
      • Enhancing CCP control
        • National Unity
          • Promoted national unity through propaganda campaigns against the USA
          • Press took to create anti-American paranoia
          • Zhou Enlai organised student demonstrations and patriotic parades
        • Party Control
          • Fear of an invasion of the US justified further measures to tighten CCP control
          • The Great Terror was launched in 1950 after the outbreak of war
        • Suppressing Opposition
          • Force foreigners to leave the country once they have been stripped of their assets
          • Americans and Christian missionaries were branded as counter-revolutionaries and suffered vilification
      • The Cost of War
        • Manpower
          • At about one million casualties
          • Most of the losses were conscripts/volunteers
          • Mao saw this as unimportant as the losses would soon be made up due to China's vast population
        • Economy
          • Despite Russia providing hardware and expertise, China had to pay for it all
          • Overh alf the government spending during the war as on the military
          • Forced requisitioning was used to feed the PLA
          • Vital industrial resources were being diverted to the war, which delayed industrial growth, restricting the success of the 1st FYP launched in 1952
      • China's International Prestige
        • enhanced China's prestige due to the PLA holding off the USA for 3 years
        • Presevation of Communist North Korea gave China greater security
        • Now seen as the enemy of the US, who began to plot against them in Tibet and Vietnam
        • Relations with the USSR suffered due to Stalin's failure to supply air cover to the PLA and get more involved in the war

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