Chinese Civil War

  • Double Tenth Revolution

    Double Tenth Revolution
    Manchu dynasty, which had been weakened by imperial presence in China, corruption, and inflation, was overthrown. The revolution began when the government lost control of its military and most provinces declared themselves independent of Beijing. Regionalism was victorious over the central government.
  • Rule of Yuan Shikai

    Rule of Yuan Shikai
    Sun Yixian agreed to make Yuan Shikai president of the new Republic in exchange for the end of Manchu rule. Throughout his regime, the issue of regionalism remained and Sun reformed his party into the GMD. Sun tried to undermine Yuan’s power my moving him to Nanjing to set up a new government away from his power base in Beijing. He refused and the GMD was not powerful enough to resist him at this point. Yuan caused his own downfall by losing provincial and military support.
  • May Fourth Movement

    May Fourth Movement
    Students led mass demonstrations in Beijing against warlords, traditional Chinese culture, and Japan. The movement wanted the rebirth of China as a proud, independent nation and was inspired by revolutionary ideology, especially the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917.
  • Formation of CCP

    Formation of CCP
    The CCP was the second revolutionary party formed during the Warlord Era. Membership of the CCP was initially mostly intellectual, so that it lacked military strength. This factor contributed to its willingness to cooperate with the GMD.
  • Formation of First United Front

    Formation of First United Front
    GMD and CCP united to accomplish their common goal of uniting China and expelling imperialists by overthrowing warlords. Jiang Jieshi, the leader of the GMD, was anti-communist but did not break alliance with CCP until goal of overthrowing warlords was accomplished.
  • Shanghai Massacre

    Shanghai Massacre
    This was the height of Jiang Jieshi's attacks on communists in his process of expelling communists from the GMD. Jiang turned on the 5,000 communists in Zhou Enlai's 'worker's army'. He had them shot with the help of informants.
  • Jiang Launches Encirclement Campaigns

    Jiang Launches Encirclement Campaigns
    After defeating the warlords, Jiang began working towards the extermination of the CCP. He planned to do so with a series of encirclement campaigns. However, the CCP army under Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai forced the GMD back by using the tactic of allowing the GMD to enter CCP territory and then attacking their fragmented units.
  • Japan Invades Manchuria

    Japan Invades Manchuria
    Japan invaded Manchuria and Jiang Jieshi responded by appealing to the League of Nations. The GMD still considered the communists the major threat to China. The invasion created much anti-Japanese sentiment among the Chinese.
  • Japan Attacks Shanghai

    Japan Attacks Shanghai
    Jiang was unsuccessful in resisting the Japan's attack and agreed to a truce. The Jiangxi Soviet declared war on Japan and the attack was the last before the Second United Front was formed and effective resistance against Japan was possible. The Japanese advanced to the Great Wall a year later, increasing anti-Japanese sentiment.
  • Long March

    Long March
    The arduous march allowed the CCP to survive and established Mao as the definitive leader of the CCP. The march took over a year and most died on the trek. The CCP were prompted to march after their defeat at the Battle of Rujin, part of Jiang's Fourth Encirclement campaign.
  • Sino-Japanese War

    Sino-Japanese War
    The war lasted from 1937 to 1945. It weakened the GMD because most of Japanese occupied territory was nationalist, so that Jiang Jieshi lost tax revenue. Meanwhile, it allowed Mao to expand his support base by presenting the struggle as a national one.
  • Formation of Second United Front

    Formation of Second United Front
    A truce was made between the GMD and CCP to unite against the Japanese, suspending the Chinese Civil War for the duration of the Sino-Japanese War. Mao called for a Second United Front, which won him popularity by presenting the CCP as the true nationalists.
  • Yalta Conference

    Yalta Conference
    Here, it was agreed that the Soviets were to invade Manchuria, which they did. When the CCP arrived, the Soviets provided them with supplies and weapons, thus ending their neutrality in the Civil War.
  • Japan Surrenders

    Japan Surrenders
    Japan surrendered to the Allies, ending both WWII and the Sino-Japanese War. The truce between the GMD and CCP ended and the second phase of the Chinese Civil War began.
  • Beginning of Second Phase: CCP on the Offensive

    Beginning of Second Phase: CCP on the Offensive
    The strengthened condition of the CCP after the Sino-Japanese war allowed it to take an offensive position against the GMD and transition from guerrilla tactics to conventional warfare. Also, the CCP strengthened and recovered during a truce which US General Marshall convinced Jiang Jieshi to accept.
  • Mao Implements Land Reform

    Mao Implements Land Reform
    Implementing land reform in CCP liberated areas such as Manchuria, increasing peasant support for Mao. This increased support matched the CCP to the GMD in terms of manpower.
  • CCP Takes Control of Northern China

    CCP Takes Control of Northern China
    Northern China, including Manchuria, came under CCP control after it captured Xuzhou, Tianjin, and Beijing. In capturing Xuzhou, the CCP had attacked a vital railroad junction and won a conventional battle against the GMD. The GMD suffered psychologically from the defeat.
  • CCP Captures Nanjng and Shanghai

    CCP Captures Nanjng and Shanghai
    The CCP's final offensives took Nanjing and Shanghai from the GMD. Afterwards, the CCP crushed the remnants of GMD resistance.
  • Mao Declares the People's Republic of China

    In October of 1949, Mao declared the creation of the People's Republic in Beijing. China was now a single party state ruled by the CCP and Mao further implemented his reforms. Society became militarized and Mao was deified in Chinese society.
  • Jiang Jieshi Flees to Taiwan

    Jiang Jieshi Flees to Taiwan
    After Mao defeated the CCP Jiang Jieshi fled to the province of Taiwan, which he claimed for the GMD. The US ensured that the PRC and not Taiwan was given China's seat on the UN council.