Monday, March 27, 2023

March 27, 2023

How did the distance between China and Russia change into proximity?

When Mao Zedong first visited the Soviet Union, Joseph Stalin made him wait for several weeks in a guest house on the outskirts of Moscow before agreeing to meet him, but when Xi Jinping visited Russia last week, So the situation was totally different.

When Mao Zedong first visited the Soviet Union, Joseph Stalin made him wait for several weeks in a guest house on the outskirts of Moscow before agreeing to meet him, but when Xi Jinping visited Russia last week, So the situation was totally different.

73 years after China and the Soviet Union signed the Treaty of Friendship, Unity and Cooperation in Mao and Stalin in 1950, Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin demonstrated to the world the 'unprecedented friendship' between the two countries. .

But the two countries have reached this point after a long journey of ideological differences, distance, reconciliation and armed conflict.

The history of these two countries is long and full of many events. For decades, the Soviet Union and China were the two great poles of Communism, often clashing over their respective interpretations of principles and their global influence.

But in the early years of the 1950s, the relations between the two countries were better.

The Chinese Civil War, which lasted from 1927 to 1936 and again from 1945 to 1949, saw the Nationalists and Communists fight for control of the world's most populous country.

With the backdrop of the Cold War, it is not surprising which side the United States and the Soviet Union chose in China's civil war.

Chiang Kai-shek's political party received financial support and weapons from the United States. The United States sent its 50,000 soldiers to protect some strategic locations.

Meanwhile, Mao Zedong's Chinese Communist Party was supported by Soviet Russia.

The Communist Party succeeded in pushing the Nationalists to the island of Taiwan. In 1949, Mao proclaimed the Republic of China.

For Stalin, Communist China was the right partner to counter US influence and expand the socialist bloc in Asia.

Mao, who needed to rebuild a country that had spent years fighting the Japanese (1937-1945) and had been engulfed in civil war, needed the help of the Soviet Union.

Visited Russia twice

Mao, who never left China, visited the Soviet Union for the first time to seek financial aid. He visited foreign countries only twice in his entire life. The second trip was to Moscow.

William Hirst, professor of Chinese politics and deputy director of the Center for Geopolitics at Cambridge University, told the BBC that Mao was unhappy with Stalin's attitude, which kept him waiting and did not give China what it wanted. '

In fact, it took several weeks for Stalin to meet the leader of the newly formed People's Republic of China. They put Mao in a guest house on the outskirts of Moscow. During this time, some restrictions were imposed on Mao's movement.

The Soviet Union was a powerful country at the time and saw China as a 'slave country', which could tolerate such humiliating treatment.

However, a few weeks later the two leaders signed the Sino-Soviet Treaty of Friendship, Unity and Mutual Assistance, which gave China much-needed support, helping China defeat Western sanctions.

Moscow was a great power and a model that Mao Zedong wanted to learn from. This was also reflected in their propaganda at that time. An oft-repeated slogan in those years was that 'the Soviet Union of today is like our (future) tomorrow'.

At that time, Moscow provided military and financial aid to China. Scholarships were given to the students and technical equipment was also provided. Apart from this, he sent thousands of engineers to China who helped a lot in building the industrial network in the country.

But after the year 1958, the relationship between the two countries became bitter.

In 1949, Mao proclaimed the Republic of China

'Great Leap Forward' strategy

Hirst points out that by this time China had decided to pursue a more radical economic agenda with its 'Great Leap Forward' strategy, while Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev sought to consolidate his power and sideline Stalin's supporters. were able to line up.'

Stalin died in 1953. Power then passed to Nikita Khrushchev, who was seen as a moderate reformist leader.

Hirst says that he (Nikita Khrushchev) wanted to reverse the economic changes brought by Stalin and move towards market-based socialism.

Mao was the exact opposite.

The Great Leap Forward policy was later described as a huge mistake by historians and the Chinese Communist Party itself. Millions of people lost their lives due to this policy. This policy called for rapid industrialization of the country and practically insisted on steel production only.

Millions of peasants were mobilized for the Great Leap Forward policy, abandoning agricultural production, which led to a devastating famine in the country.

American University professor Joseph Torrezian says on the 'China Power' podcast that Mao had a habit of finding reasons when there were strategic and political differences.

When he saw Khrushchev's behavior, he thought that something was wrong with the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, which he called revisionism.

Mao called the new Soviet leader a 'peaceful coexistence with the West


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