Why Did China Enter the Korea War

looks at why Chine entered the Korean War - sino-soviet split

a2 history with edexcel

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1. Why did China enter the Korean War?
The UN forces moved closer to the Yalu River
The Chinese became increasingly concerned about their own security against attack from the USA
and its allies
China's new Communist government was alarmed at the USA's new desire to roll back communism
Chinese support for North Korea was always likely given the assistance 145,000 Korean volunteers
had provided for Mao's communists in the Chinese Civil War
MacArthur's advance to the Yalu River sparked the entry of China into North Korea
Mao probably wanted to warn the Americans off by sending volunteers across the border
2. How do you think the war affected Sino-US relations?
The defeat of the US-supported Nationalists was a failure for US policy
The emergence of China as a superpower of some potential was to have an important impact on US
policy towards Indochina
The United States hoped the economic isolation would weaken and ultimately bring down Mao's
Washington also feared that a burgeoning trade relationship between Japan and China would be
followed by closer political ties and the detachment of Japan from the US sphere of influence
The Korean War scuppered any remaining chance that the United States might recognise the
People's Republic and build Mao up as an Asian Tito, capable of standing up to Moscow in the same
way as the Yugoslavian leader
The United States recognised Taiwan as the only official Chinese state until 1971
Denial of the island of Taiwan to China was an important means of limiting the power of Chinese
communism in Asia
3. What were the changes in leadership in '53 and how did this affect the war?
Eisenhower had won the presidential election in the USA on the slogan `I shall go to Korea'
This was widely interpreted by the US public as a desire to end the war
Eisenhower was ready to bring the peace talks to a conclusion
Stalin died
The new Soviet leadership was willing to see an end to the war
4. How did the Korean War affect US policy in Asia?
It led to the rearming of the USA with a three-fold increase in military spending
The USA would now be ready to meet further examples of communist aggression
They saw the need to develop and use a wide range of strategies to help governments facing the
threat of communism
From sending military advisors to full-scale use of nuclear weapons
There was a hardening of US attitudes towards foreign policy and the methods that should be used in
combating the spread of communism
Direct and forceful action
The Soviet Union needed to be shown that the USA meant what it said about supporting those who,
in the worlds of the Truman Doctrine, were `resisting subjugation by armed minorities or by outside
It marked a shift from the policy of containment towards one of attempting to roll back communism
from the Korean peninsular
`MacArthur's whole subsequent course of behaviour was consistent with a strategy designed to
provoke and then escalate a war in Asia'
US policy towards Taiwan was altered radically
Truman ordered the US Seventh Fleet to the seas around Taiwan to warn communist China that any
attempt the seize the island would be resisted by the USA

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The USA began to view Chiang Kai Shek as a useful bulwark against the further encroachment of
communism in the region
The advance of communism in China in 1949, followed so quickly by the war in Korea, turned the
French actions in Indochina into a crucial part of the struggle against world communism
Over $1 billion a year was spent in US aid to the French in Indochina
The French campaign was financed largely by the USA
It drew the USA into a gradual involvement…read more

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MacArthur's warmongering was beginning to cause tension between himself and Truman. His
demands and attitudes amounted to insubordination.…read more

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It also marked a significant escalation in the Cold War and established a trend towards the principle
of limited war
Establishing the unwritten rule of the deliberate limitation of the scale of warfare was to be an
important consequence of the war
The Korean War had a similar impact on the US economy to that which it had on the Cold War in
Marked a considerable hardening in the US government's determination towards its commitment to
combating communism
The US increased its military capacity…read more


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