F. Communism in China

   A timeline of key events in China during Communism
    Communism is an important term when it comes to China's modern history. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels saw a flaw in capitalism saying it "exploited the working class. They came up with the idea of equalizing everyone's wealth. The government does this with heavy taxes. There is no private property because the government owns all land and people usually have little power in the government.
    Mao Zedong took power in China when the Communists won the civil war in 1949 against the Nationalists. He launched many campaigns displaying Communism and fortifying his power including: The Great Leap Forward, the Cultural Revolution, and many laws. Many people have said that if he had not launched some of these campaigns that he would have been a much more respected person by everyone.
    The Great Leap Forward was a plan to increase the output of China's steel, coal, energy, and agriculture. It was launched by Mao Zedong in 1958. Mao aimed to have a higher output of steel than Great Britain by 1972. In order to do this, Mao encouraged the common people to process steel in their back yards. This resulted in terrible quality and the steel could not be used. 
    After the Great Leap Forward, many people, including some Communist leaders, started questioning Mao's leadership. He decided to launch the Cultural Revolution. This was the attempt to destroy any people or ideas that were against him and other Communist ideas. Mao enlisted the young generation that were easier to mold and didn't know of the past to be a loyal group to him. This group was called the Red Guards. The members of this group were usually college students and often carried out searches of people's houses and humiliated people because of their actions. People were publicly accused or even beaten if they did or said anything against Mao. This lasted from 1958 until Mao died.
    A couple years after Mao died, some pro-democracy demonstrators formed a huge protest demanding more freedom in Tiananmen Square. They stayed there throughout the nights and every hour of the day. After a while, the government sent in troops and tanks to deal with the demonstrators and killed many. The government has done a lot to try and stop the people from finding out info about that attack. They even went as far as deleting some Google searches involved in China. One iconic event from Tiananmen Square was one brave protestor who stood in front of the tanks rolling down the streets. This is shown in a video below.
    After all of these happened we can see the negative effects of Communism and they all have one thing in common: they all led to less freedom to the Chinese people. It also weakened their economy. Communism took its toll on the Chinese and these effects can be seen even today. As of today, only two countries are Communist: North Korea and Cuba and they both have very bad interactions with the world. This proves that Communism is not a successful form of government.

Quick Summary:
  • Communism is a combination of a command economy and a dictatorship.
  • Mao Zedong was China's first Communist leader in the early 1900's.
  • He launched the Great Leap Forward to increase steel, energy, and agricultural output. It failed and killed millions.
  • He launched the Cultural Revolution to get rid of any anti-communist thoughts/people.
  • Tiananmen Square started as a protest from college students about political freedoms and ended with a violent attack from the Chinese Army.

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(public domain)
Notebook pgs:
6, 9, 10, 11, and 12 
Josh created the Propaganda poster.