Tuesday, November 24, 2015
Spread of Communism outside Europe and its effects on International relations
War in Korea and its effects on international relations
A) BACKGROUND TO THE WAR
- Korea had been under Japanese occupation since 1910;
- When japan was defeated, USA and USSR agreed to divide korea along the 38th parallel.
- North and south were under control of USSR and USA respectively.
- Americans were not intended to be a permanent division and they agreed the UN wish to conduct elections to the whole country.
- But the elections were boycotted in north since 2/3 of the people live in south.
- Elections were held in south ;supervised by UN; independent Republic of Korea( south korea) was established with syngman Rhee as president.
- Russians created the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea under communist government of Kim Il Sung; both troops were withdrawn;
- Both leaders claimed the right to rule the whole country. Without warning, north Korean troops invaded South Korea in june 1950
B) Why did the north Koreans invade in south?
- Kim Il Sung
Ø Encouraged by the statement of USA that it intended to defend areas around pacific; but it did not mention the korea.
Ø Encouraged by newly formed communist government in china.
Ø Supplied the North Koreans with tanks and other equipment; takeover of south could strengthen their position in Pacific ; retaliation for stalin failure in west Germany.
- South Korea
Ø Communists claimed that south Korea started the war when their troops crossed the 38th parallel.
C) The USA takes action
- Truman convinced that it was Russia plan to spread the communism.
- He decided it was essential for the west to take a stand supporting south korea; US along with her allies sent troops to korea under command of US general Mac Arthur; Later UN followed them.
- Seoul was captured and to conduct free elections to the country , troops advanced further and occupied 2/3 rd of N.Korea.
- Chinese government condemned this and asked to withdraw; it was ignored.
- Chinese launched a massive counter offensive with over 3 lakh troops; crossed the 38th parallel and captured Seoul again.
- Later the UN forces cleared the communists out of south Korea again and fortifies the frontier.
- 1953, an agreement was made that the frontier should be roughly along the 38th parallel.
D) The results of the war were wide-ranging:
1) For Korea it was a disaster; division seemed permanent; both states remained intensely suspicious of each other and heavily armed; constant ceasefire violations;
2) Though Truman was satisfied with containing communism in Korea, he failed in the case of China.
4) The UN exerted its authority and reversed an act of aggression; communists denounced it as a tool of capitalists.
5) China became a super world power by preventing US influence on Korea; but she was still not allowed a seat in the UN seemed even more unreasonable.
6) New dimension to the cold war; American relations with china and Russia were permanently strained; both started building up alliances ; china supported Indo – Chinese communists to get liberation from French; offered friendship and aid to third world countries ; peaceful co-existence agreements were signed with India and Burma.
- Americans tried to encircle china with bases;
Ø 1951 defensive agreements were signed with Australia and new Zealand;
Ø Together these states and Britain france It setup South East Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO).
Ø USA disappointed that no third world countries were interested in it and they wanted to keep clear of the cold war.
a) Why did Castro came to power:-
- There was a long standing resentment among many Cubans at the amount of American influene in the country.
- 1898, America helped cuba to overthrow the Spanish.
- Since then American troops were needed from time to time to maintain stability
- America gave financial aid and investment kept the Cuban economy ticking over.
- In fact, USA controlled the Cuban economy and industries, owned half of the land, 3/5th of the railways, all electricity production and telephone system.
- The USA was the market for cuba’s exports.
- Though Cuba was prosperous than other Latin American countries, she was too dependent on the export of sugar, and the wealth of the country was concentrated in the hands of a few.
- Unemployment was a serious problem; neither the government nor trade unions did anything. Consequently social tensions were high.
- Since there was no prospect of a peaceful social revolution, the feeling grew that a violent revolution was necessary.
- Fidel Castro, a young lawyer was a leading exponent of this view; though initially he was a liberal nationalist , wanted to rid Cuba of Batista and corruption and to introduce a limited land reforms so that all peasants would receive some land.
- After an unsuccessful attempt to overthrow Batista, he was sent to jail for 2 years.
- Castro began a campaign of guerrilla warfare; rebels soon controlled the mountainous area of the east and north and won popular support there by carrying through Castro’s land reform policy.
- Batista took savage reprisals against the guerrillas, torturing and murdering suspects.
- Morale in Batista’s poorly paid army began to crumble in 1958
- USA began to fell embarrassment at Batista’s behavior and cut off arms supplies;
- Che Guevara , and Argentinian supporter of Castro, gained control of the main road across the island and prepared to move Santa Clara.
- 1959, Batista fled from Cuba, and a liberal government was setup with Castro at its head.
b) How were Cuba’s foreign relations affected?
- Cuban relations with the USA did not deteriorated immediately;
- Castro was thought to be a social democrat, US prepared to give him a chance.
- But he outraged the USA by nationalizing American-owned estates and factories.
- Eisenhower threatened to stop importing sugar; Russia promised to buy sugar; Castro confiscate all remaining American property.
- Cuban relations with Russia got worsened, with Russia improved.
- 1961, USA broke off diplomatic relations with Cuba, but Russians were already supporting with the economic aid.
- After missile crisis, relations between the USA and Cuba remained cool.
- Other Latin American states, run by right wing governments expelled Cuba from the Organization of American States( OAS), which only made her more dependent on Russia.
c) Castro and his problems:
- Cuba is initially depended on USA and later on USSR for its exports.
- Her economy relied too much on sugar industry and was at the mercy of fluctuations in world sugar prices.
- Corruption, serious unemployment and poverty were the major problems before Castro.
- New government launched itself into tackling the problems with enthusiasm and dedication.
o Agricultural land was taken over by the government and acollective farms introduced;
o Factories and businesses were nationalized;
o Introduced new industries to reduce Cuban dependence on sugar;
o Social reforms included attempts to improve education, housing, health, medical facilities and communications.
o Equality for black and more rights for women.
o Castro himself seemed to have boundless energy; he was constantly touring the island , making speeches and urging people to greater efforts.
- Huge success of all attempts came by the end of 1970.
- But he failed to diversify the agriculture; still it was sugar dominated economy.
- In 1980 the sugar crop and tobacco were affected by diseases. Plunged the island into an economic crisis, unemployment rose again, people began to emigrate to USA; food rationing was introduced and the whole economy was being heavily subsidized by the USSR.
- 1991, after the fall of USSR, Cuba had lost its most powerful supporter, and the castro regime was left dangerously isolated.
The wars in Vietnam 1946-54 and 1961-75
- Indo- china under French empire- Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia.
a) 1946- 54:
o first phase struggle was for independence from French.
o Indo-china was occupied by japan during the world war;
o Resistance to both Japanese and French was organized by the League for Vietnamese Independence ( Vietminh ) led by Ho chi minh.
o At the end of the war Ho chin declared independence of Vietnam. But French denied it; and struggle started.
o Struggle ended with the French defeat.
o Vietminh was successful because they were expert in guerilla war tactics and popular support; china supplied arms
o The USA also became involved; seeing the struggle as part of the cold war and the fight against communism, supplied the French with economic and military aid; but it was not enough.
o 1954, Geneva agreement – Laos and Cambodia were to be independent;
o Vietnam was temporarily divide into two states at the 17th parallel; Ho chin minh government was recognized in North and south was to have a separate government for the time being.
o But elections were to be held by 1956 for the whole country.
o The elections were never held , and a repeat performance of the Korean situation.
o Civil war gradually developed in south which eventually involved the north and the USA.
b) What caused the civil war in south Vietnam and why did the USA become involved?
o south Vietnamese president Ngo Dinh Diem refused to make preparations for the elections for fear of communist victory if the elections went ahead.
o US obsessed with the ‘domino theory’ – if one country in a region fell to communism, it would quickly ‘knock over ‘ all its neighbours.
o Diem lost popularity because- discrimination against Buddhism , corruption, influenced too much by USA.
o 1960, various opposition groups including Vietminh formed the National Liberation Front (NLF) which demanded a democratic national coalition government which would unite the Vietnam.
o Guerilla war started ; repressed brutally. Finally Diem was overthrown. Military started ruling country; but basic situation unchanged and the guerilla war continued.
o The USA decided to increase its military presence in south Vietnam.
o Having failed to defeat communism in north Korea and Cuba, the USA felt a strong stand must be made.
o The Americans were strengthened in their resolve by the knowledge that the Vietcong were receiving supplies, equipment and troops from North Vietnam.
o Ho Chi Minh believed that such aid was justified;
o Given south Vietnam’s refusal to agree to national elections, only force could unite the two halves of the country.
c) the phases of war:
- corresponds to successive American presidencie.
Ø Safe village policy- local peasants were moved en masse into fortified villages , leaving the Vietcong isolated outside.
Ø Failed because most of the Vietcong were peasants.
Ø Assumed that Vietcong were controlled by Ho Chi Minh and decide to bomb North Vietnam.
Ø Over next 7 years a greater tonnage of bombs was dropped on North Vietnam.
Ø Vietcong still managed to get 80% of all villages and towns.
Ø Great pressure was put on the government by public in USA to withdraw from Vietnam.
Ø He suspended the bombing but no intention of withdrawing.
Ø New idea was known as vietnamization: the amerians would rearm and train the south Vietnamese army to look after the defence of south which would allow a gradual withdrawal of American troops.
Ø On the other hand, bombing on Vietnam was revoked.
Ø Nixon was under pressure both at home and world. Because:
o The terrible bombing of north Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia;
o Use of chemicals to destroy jungle foliage and of inflammable napalm jelly which burned people alive;
o The deaths of thousands of innocent civilians;
Ø A cease fire was arranged in1973;
Ø American troops were withdrawn; both north and south agreed to respect the frontier along the 17th parallel;
Ø But Vietcong continued their campaign occupied the south; both Vietnams were united under a communist government.
Ø In the same year communist governments were also established in Laos and Cambodia. American policy of preventing the spread of communism in south east Asia had ended in complete failure.
d) why did the Americans fail?
1) Vietcong and the NLF had widespread support among ordinary people, who had genuine grievances against an inefficient government.
2) The Vietcong, like the Vietminh before them, were experts at guerrilla warfare and were fighting on familiar territory.
3) The Vietcong received important help from North Vietnam in the way of troops, and from china and Russia who supplied arms.
4) The north Vietnamese were dedicated to eventual victory and the unification of the country. In spite of American bombings , they responded by evacuating city populations and rebuilding factories outside the cities.
e) The effects of the war were wide-reaching:
- Vietnam was united: but the new government policies had unpleasant aspects such as concentration camps for opponents and no freedom of speech.
- USA- blow to American prestige; involvement in war was seen in many circles as a terrible mistake;
- The war was a victory for communist world; but they wished to relax international tensions , though they now had another powerful force on their side in the Vietnamese army.
Chile under Salvador Allende 1970-73
- 1970, Salvador Allende, a Marxist doctor , won the presidential election as a leader of left wing coalition of left parties called Unidad Popular.
a) How did Allende come to be elected?
Ø Chile, unlike most other south American states, had a tradition of democracy.
Ø The election of 1964 was won by Eduardo Frei, leader Christian Democrats, who believed in social reforms
o Brought down the inflation
o House and schools were built.
o Limited land reforms
o Took over about half the holdings in the American- owned copper mines, with compensation.
Ø US admired his reforms and gave economic aid.
Ø But the left wanted full nationalization of the copper industry; where as right thought he had already gone too far.
Ø Followed by serious drought in 1969, caused the large quantities of food had to be imported, causing inflation soar again.
Ø The strikes of copper miners demanding higher wages and several miners were killed by government troops.
Ø Allende made skilful use of this ammunition during the 1970 election campaign and he believed that communism could succeed without a violent revolution.
b) Allende’s problems and policies:-
Ø Inflation, unemployment, industry was stagnating, poverty, malnutrition.
Ø He believed that redistribution of income enable the poor to buy more and thereby stimulate the economy.
Ø All-round wage increases of about 40%. Firms were not allowed to increase prices.
Ø Copper industry, textiles, and banks were nationalized.
Ø The army was awarded an even bigger pay rise than anybody else to make sure of keeping its support.
Ø He restored diplomatic relations with Castro’s Cuba, china and east Germany.
c) Why was he overthrown?
Ø Land redistribution cause a fall in agricultural production as happened in Russia.
Ø Private investors were frightened off and the government became short of funds to carry out social reforms.
Ø Copper nationalization was disappointing – due to strikes and fall in price.
Ø Some communists wanted a more drastic Castro style approach to chile’s problems grew impatient with allende’s caution.
Ø The USA disapproved strongly of Allende’s policies and other South American governments were nervous in case the Chileans tried to export their revolution.
o As per the constitution Allende would not be elected as a president again.
o The opposition, feared that Allende was trying to change the constitution.
o With the support of military they staged a military coup;
o A military dictatorship was setup; general Pinochet came to the fore;The whole left leaders were murdered.
o American CIA , helped by the Brazilian government ,played a vital role in the preparations for the coup, as part of its policy of preventing the spread of communism.
o Again Chile got stability with the revival of US aid.
o Pinochet was in no hurry to return the country to civilian rule.
o He eventually allowed presidential elections in 1989 when the civilian candidate he supported was heavily defeated; Christian democrat leader Patrico Aylwin , became the president.
Détente: international relations from the 1970s to the 1990s
Détente- Permanent relaxation of tensions between east and west.
a) Reasons for détente:
- Countries had their own individual motives for wanting détente.
Ø USSR was finding the expense of keeping up with the US crippling. It eas essential to reduce defence spending so that they could devote more resources to bringing living standards up to western levels.
Ø The americans were beginning to realize that there must be a better way of coping with communism than the one which was having so little success in Vietnam.
Ø Chinese were anxious about their isolation, did not want to deteriorate its relations with both US and USSR.
Ø The nations of western Europe were worried because they would ne in the front line if nuclear war broke out.
b) The USSR and the USA
- Already hot-line telephone link and agreement to carry out only under ground tests were made.
- Strategic arms limitation treaty (SALT 1)- decided how many ABMs, ICBMs and SLBMs each side could have; MIRVs were not included; this slowed down the arms race.
- Helsinki agreement:: USA , Canada, USSR and most of the European states accepted the recognition of frontiers drawn immediately after the world war ( germanies were recognized)
- 1979- Russia again started missile building. Détente was dragged to the corner.
- Détente gathered momentum again thanks to the determination of the new soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev. Proposed a 15 year time table for disposal of nuclear weapons. As a result INF( intermediate nuclear force) Treaty was signed.
o All land base intermediate range nuclear weapons were to be scrapped over the next 13 years.
o Strict verification process.
- INF treaty was and important turning point in the nuclear arms race, since it was the first time any weapons had been destroyed.
- By 1985 USSR was seriously embarrassed by its involvement in Afghanistan; they found it impossible to subdue the ferocious Islamic guerrillas; it was a drain on their resources;
- Finally USSR pulled out the troops; USA stopped sending military aid to the Afghan resistance movement.
c) China and the USA:
- Chinese invited USA table tennis team to visit china - USA responded by calling off her veto of Chinese entry into the UN.
- There was still the problem of Taiwan; relations improved further in 1978 when US decided to withdraw recognition of Nationalist of Taiwan.
- 1979, US gave formal recognition of the Peoples Republic of china; china needed a détente with US because it had conflict with Vietnam began.
- 1985, an agreement was signed on nuclear cooperation.
- Things took turn for the worse in 1989 when the Chinese government used troops to disperse a student demonstration in Tiananmen Square, Beijing. At least 1000 were killed which brought world wide condemnation.
d) Relations between the USSR and China:
- Earlier they signed a treaty of mutual assistance and friendship
- Ideological conflict- Khrushchev believed that communism can be achieved through means other than revolution; Chinese accused the Russians of ‘revisionism’- interpreting Marx’s and lenin’s teachings to their need and their soft line towards china. In retaliation the Russians reduced their economic aid to china.
- Frontier dispute- Chinese demanding the Vladivostok and Sinkiang provinces back to them from Russia. No success achieved.
- China herself was following a softer policy towards the USA. It seemed that both Russia and china were vying for American support against each other for the leadership of world communism.
- Vietnam supported Russia; china attacked Vietnam for the cause of its invasion in Cambodia; but withdrawn their troops.
- In 1984 Chinese set out their grievance against the USSR;
o The presence of Russian troops in Afghanistan;
o Soviet backing of the Vietnamese troops in Cambodia;
o The soviet troop build-up along the Chinese frontiers of Mongolia and Manchuria.
- Mikhail Gorbachev begin a new era in sino-russain relations .five year agreement on trade and economic co-operation were signed.
- Vietnam withdrawn its troops from Cambodia ; relations were resumed with china.
the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe: international relations transformed:
a) 1988 to 1991:-
Ø Began in Poland ,1988 when the ‘solidarity; trade union organized huge anti-government strike, forced the government to allow free elections where communists were defeated. Same happened in the Hungary.
Ø In east Germany the government was resigned ; soon the berlin wall was breached; Germany was united.
Ø Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria and Romania had thrown out their communist governments; multiparty elections were held in Yugoslavia.
Ø By the end of December 1991 the USSR itself had split up into separate republics.
b) How were international relations affected?
a. The cold war was over:-
i. Former USSR and its allies were no longer seen by the west as the enemy.
ii. 1990 November the countries of NATO and the Warsaw Pact signed a treaty agreeing that they were ‘no longer adversaries’
iii. None of their weapons would ever be used except in self-defence.
b. New conflicts soon arose:-
These were often caused by nationalism. Nationalism which has been suppressed by communism, soon re-emerged in some of the former states of USSR and eastern Europe states.
§ Czechoslovakia, where Slovak nationalists insisted on breaking away to form a separate state of Slovakia. This was settled peacefully.
§ War broken out between Azerbaijan and Armenia over a disputed territory.
§ There was fighting in Georgia where the people of north wanted to from a separate state.
§ Yugoslavia, was broken up into five separate states- Serbia ( with Montenegro), Bosnia- Herzegovina, Croatia, Slovenia and Macedonia.
§ Soon a civil war broke out in which Serbia tried to grab as much territory as possible from Croatia.
§ In Bosnia, serbs, croats and muslims fought each other in an attempt to set up states of their own.
c. Nuclear weapons supervision:
i. One of the needs of the 1990s was for better international supervision and control of nuclear weapons, and also of biological and chemical weapons.
ii. But both USA and Russia were less willing to act as policemen.
d. Economic problems
i. All the former communist states faced another problem that how to change from command economy to the free market economy.
ii. They needed a carefully planned and generous program of financial help from the west.
e. The unification of Germany created some problems:
i. The poles were very suspicious of a united and powerful Germany, fearing that it might try to take back the former german territory given to Poland after the second world war.
ii. Germany also found itself providing refuge for people fleeing from disturbances in other states of Europe; this gave rise to violent protests from right-wing neo- nazi groups who believed that Germany had problems enough of its own- like development of east Germany.
f. Relation between the western allies:
i. Disappearance of communism affected relations between the western allies , USA , western Europe and japan.
ii. Difference emerged over trade and the extent to which the USA and japan were prepared to help solve the problems of eastern Europe.