October 11: Communists and Kuomintang

Written by Matthew Mendez, Journalist

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Photo credits to Seth Knoop

October 11, 1945. Civil war erupts in China, pitting the nationalist forces of the Kuomintang, led by Chiang Kai-Shek, against Mao Zedong’s communists. For thousands of years, China shifted between the hands of imperial dynasties, each eventually faltering due to both internal and external struggles. The final imperial dynasty, the Qing, were eventually usurped by Republican forces in 1912. The first part of the war occurred between the years 1927 to 1945, interrupted only by the Second Sino-Japanese War. Hostilities continued in the latter half of 1945, with Soviet aid propping up the much weakened communist forces. Despite much brave fighting and near victory by Kuomintang forces, Mao’s communists ultimately prevailed, uniting China under the rule of a new communist party.