The Rise of the Chinese Communist Party in 1900s
Based on my understanding and analysis, the three concerns that influenced Chinese political developments in 1900s include the people’s aspiration of democracy, national sovereignty and the concern about social problems. The Communist ideas are supported by people and alive because Mao Zedong analyzed the classes and situation of China correctly. The Communist relied on the force of industrial proletariat and treated the entire semi-proletariat and petty bourgeoisie as its closest friends and strived for the vacillating middle bourgeoisie, while regarded “the warlords, the bureaucrats, the comprador class, the big landlord class and the reactionary section of the intelligentsia attached to them as its enemies” (March 1926). In a word, the Communist relied on industrial proletariat, strived for middle bourgeoisie and fought against the bureaucrats and landlord. Mao’s idea of “establishing independent regimes of the workers and the peasants by armed force” (October 1928) ensured that the Communist Party organization remained strong and its policy correct.
As the fall of Qing dynasty, more than 2000 years of feudal monarchy ended in China. However, “the present regime of the new warlords of the Kuomintang remains a regime of the comprador class in the cities and the landlord class in the countryside” (October 1928). Chinese people didn’t realize democracy and freedom; the things coming to them are worse exploitation and oppression by the new warlords. Kuomintang capitulated to imperialism in its foreign relations, while the presence of the landlord class and the comprador class brought more disasters to the poor peasants. The oppression of Kuomintang took everything from the peasants. They lost their lands. Their concern of democracy influenced Chinese political developments to a large extent. The poor peasants need their lands and rights back. They needed a party to lead their revolutions against the landlords and compradors, to gain democracy. In late 1926 and early 1927, “in some areas the peasants had seized the land for themselves, formed ‘poor peasants associations’ to run their communities, paraded, humiliated, and killed the more hated of the local landlords” (Spence, 322). The Communists fomented the revolutions against landlords and compradors in the countryside, helping these poor peasants to get democracy.
Secondly, the concern of national sovereignty did influence Chinese political developments. As one of the triumphant countries in WWI, although China’s military strength was trivial compared to that of the European belligerents or of the United States, China didn’t receive any corresponding respects and benefits from its contribution to the war. “The Versailles agreements granted the Japanese the right to station police and to establish military garrisons in Jinan and Qingdao, and also mortgaged to Japan the total income from two new Shandong railroads the Japanese planned to develop” (Spence, 278). The semi-colonial China is still under indirect imperialist rule with no absolute national sovereignty. Later on, because of Kuomintang’s inability and weakness in foreign relations, callous attitudes of the landlords combined with the pressures placed on China by foreign imperialism worsen exploitation of the peasants. In this sense, Chinese people desired national sovereignty. The second Kuomintang-Communist cooperation indicated people’s concern of national sovereignty. Kuomintang’s soft foreign policy weakened its political influences among Chinese people, while Communists catered people’s concern and desire of national sovereignty.
The third concern, which influenced Chinese political developments, is people’s concern of the social problems. In 1930s, millions of Chinese people lived in terrible and humiliating poverty. Even in big cities, work was not always available. In addition, population growth, primitive technology, and soil exhaustion were responsible for the growing poverty in the Chinese countryside. The growing poverty caused a number of social problems and social unrest. People’s concern of the social problems promoted the rise of the Communist, which supported the revolutions.
The success of Communist in China is inevitable. “Mao Zedong pointed out that the peasantry was the staunchest and numerically the largest ally of the Chinese proletariat” (March 1926), while Kuomintang relied on bureaucrats and landlords as the minority of Chinese people. The minority of the rich people suppressed against the revolutions, to ensure their interests. The majority of the poor people fought for democracy, to get rid of poverty and exploitation. Mao’s accurate analysis of Chinese classes built up a good basis for the success of the Communist in the future. Communist ideas could be kept alive since the CCP represented the willingness and interests of the majority of Chinese people.
Furthermore, the theory of “establishing independent regimes of the workers and the peasants by armed force” kept Communist ideas alive. First, Mao pointed that the works “represent China’s new productive forces, is the most progressive class in modern China and has become the leading force in the revolutionary movement” (March 1926). The workers’ thoughts are the most progressive ones. Their thoughts directed the development of China in 1900s. Second, the “independent regimes of the workers and peasants” holds the significant content of land reform. Mao realized that land reform is the core of Chinese democratic revolution. Peasants are the main force of Chinese democratic revolution. Only if the Communist Party satisfied the peasants’ needs, it could gain the peasants’ supports in the revolutions in 1900s. Finally, Mao emphasized on the importance of establishing of the armed force. He said that “the existence of a regular Red Army of adequate strength is a necessary condition for the existence of Red political power” (October 1928).
China experienced a turbulent transition in 1900s. The invasion of the imperialism, the fall of Qing dynasty, the rise of warlords, the establishment of Kuomintang and the Chinese Communist Party. China was searching the approach to realizing its unification and democracy difficultly. People’s concerns of democracy, national sovereignty and social problems need the lead of the CCP. The CCP’s ideas get the wide supports since the CCP represents the interests of the majority of Chinese people.