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Modern China time line.

China is the world's most populous country, with nearly 1.3 billion people--about 20 percent of all the people on Earth. Because of its population and growing economic clout, China plays an important role in world affairs. The following time line lists key events in the history of modern China. Use the information to answer the questions.

TIME LINE

1912-1922: The Republic of China is founded after the fall of the Manchu dynasty. Rival warlords compete for power and the republic collapses. By 1922, civil war is widespread across China. The Nationalist Party and the Chinese Communists form an alliance to fight the warlords.

1926-1928: Led by Chiang Kai-shek, the Nationalists defeat rival warlords in northern China, capture Beijing, and unite China under a new government for the first time since 1916. Chiang turns against the Communists, executing and jailing thousands. Communist survivors, led by Mao Zedong, escape to the mountains.

1934-1937: The Nationalists and the Communists battle for control of China. Meanwhile, Japan invades and occupies northern China. Chiang makes major political concessions, feeling unprepared to fight both Japan and the Communists. The concessions anger Chinese students and intellectuals. In 1937, Japan seizes much of the rest of China.

1941-1945: China joins the Allies in World War II. The economic and human costs of the war, as well as widespread government corruption, erode popular support for Chiang's Nationalists. The Communists, meanwhile, gain political and military influence in the countryside.

1949: Communist forces capture Beijing and establish the People's Republic of China on October 1, 1949. In December, Chiang Kai-shek and his Nationalist followers flee to the island of Taiwan. Mao Zedong becomes Chairman of the Chinese Communist Party. The Soviet Union supports China with milltary, technical, and economic support.

1958-1970: Mao initiates the Great Leap Forward, an economic-development plan that collectivizes farms and forces hard labor on factory workers. But China's weak infrastructure breaks down, causing famine and economic depression. A similar social movement called the Cultural Revolution (1966-1970) is a brutal effort to eliminate Mao's opponents.

1972-1979: In 1972, President Richard Nixon meets with Mao and Premier Zhou Enlai in Beijing, opening the way to the normalization of relations between China and the U.S. Mao and Zhou die in 1976. Deng Xiaoping becomes China's new leader. He promotes economic reforms and expands foreign trade and investment.

1989: Demonstrators across China call for democratic reform and protest government corruption. The world watches the dramatic confrontations between protesters and soldiers in Beijing's Tiananmen Square. China's military crushes the demonstrations, killing hundreds of protesters. The government executes suspected pro-democracy movement activists,

2003: Hu Jintao becomes China's new leader. The government suppresses news of an outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). Hundreds of Chinese die and SARS spreads across the world. The government later admits to a cover-up as part of an effort to protect the economy.

QUESTIONS

Write your answers on a separate piece of paper.

1. Which group cooperated with the Nationalist Party to defeat rival warlords during China's civil war?

2. What action by the Nationalist Party angered many Chinese students and intellectuals?

3. Which nation provided key support to Communist China in 1949?

4. During the Cold War, the U.S. sought to contain the spread of Communism throughout the world. Describe what you think were the state of relations between China and the U.S. in 1949?

5. What caused the failure of the Great Leap Forward?

6. What economic changes did China's new leader make after the deaths of Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai in 1976?

7. Do you think it is better for a nation to be open or closed to foreign influences? How would each choice affect a nation's political system, culture, and economy? Explain your answer.

8. What degree of political and personal freedom existed in China after 1989?

9. Who is the current leader of China?

10. Do you think China was correct in suppressing information about the SAnS outbreak? Explain your answer.

Skills Master 2, p. T-7

1. Chinese Communist Party

2. Chiang Kai-shek made political concessions to Japan in order to concentrate his efforts on defeating the Communists.

3. Soviet Union

4. The U.S. viewed China's close relationship with the Soviet Union as a threat.

5. China lacked the strong infrastructure and resources needed to make the Great Leap Forward a success.

6. Deng Xiaoping adopted a series of economic reforms and encouraged foreign trade and investment.

7. Answers will vary.

8. After the crushing of the prodemocracy movement in 1989, China has seen a lessening of personal and political freedoms.

9. Hu Jintao

10. Answers will vary.
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Title Annotation:Skills Master 2
Publication:Junior Scholastic
Geographic Code:9CHIN
Date:Jan 19, 2004
Words:771
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