East Asian Civilizations Essay

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East Asian Civilizations

(1) Unequal Treaties

(2) sino-japanese war 3

(3) MARCH 1ST MOVEMENT

(1) CHINA IN DECLINE

(1) CHINA's CIVIL WAR 7

(1) UNEQUAL TREATIES

The growing demand for Chinese tea, silk and ceramics by British had created severe trade imbalance for Britain. The British were also losing their silver reserves in exchange for Chinese goods. In late 1930's government of Great Britain found "opium" as a solution for resolving trade imbalance. Opium, which is more addictive than tea, was being supplied to China by British merchants. As demand for opium increased in China, Britain's imports increased and in this way silver bullion was flowing out of the China into Britain.

However Chinese government (Qing government) took serious steps to stop the trade of opium. Lin Zexu, which was appointed as an Imperial Commissioner for the Destruction of Opium, started an anti-opium campaign. During the campaign, opium stores were destroyed and opium dealers were arrested. This act of Qing government was unbearable by the British, so two wars were fought by them, which were known as Opium Wars in the history of Chinese civilization.

Due to lack of military technology, China had to suffer defeat in both the wars and had to sign "Unequal Treaties." Among Unequal Treaties, "Treaty of Nanjing" was signed in 1842, in which China had to made payments to the Britain for the losses they bore during the first Opium War. China had to open five more ports for foreign trade and also had to give extraterritoriality to British citizens in China. Moreover, Hong Kong was occupied by Britain in the Treaty of Nanjing. In June 1858, China signed another Treaty, known as "Treaty of Tianjin." China had to open more ports for foreign trade, gave permission to foreign legislation in Beijing (capital of China), allowed Christian missionary and had to give legal status to the import of opium.

The period during which the Treaty of Nanjing and the Treaty of Tianjin were signed, was known as "the Era of Unequal Treaties," in which China gave many concessions to Western powers and had to forcibly ease the import of opium into the country.

PART I: (2) SINO-JAPANESE WAR

The Sino-Japanese war was the conflict between Japan and China for the dominance of Chinese part, i.e. Korea. Japan gained its influence over Taiwan and Korean Peninsula (Paine). The Western powers demanded from Japan that it should restrict its influence and should stop claiming Liaodong, Japanese did not listened to any power in the world, rather planned a war against Russia in order to gain more territories. After the Sino-Japanese war, the balance of power in the world changed. China, that dominated the world for several years and was the inventor of early weapons, has destroyed its position badly, whereas Japan gained the status of the world power. The Sino-Japanese war also transformed Russia as well. The foreign policy of Russia was reorganized away from Europe towards Asia after the war. Japan was regarded as a major threat to the Siberian frontier. Japan also decided to run the Siberian railway straight through Manchuria in order to shorten the link between Lake Baikal and Vladivostok.

PART I: (3) MARCH 1ST MOVEMENT

The intolerable and unbearable behavior of Japanese colonialists caused nationwide uprising in Korea on 1st March, 1919. The March was against the oppression and aggressive attitude of Japanese on Koreans. The struggle was made by the Korean leaders to make aware other countries about the injustice they were dealt with by the Japanese. Various efforts were made by Japanese leaders, including Syngman Rhee, who wanted to visit Paris in 1918 to make an appeal for Korean independence (Devine). But his travel to Paris was banned by the U.S. officials. Efforts were also made by Korean students to release them from the cruelty of Japans. But all efforts were failed due to Japanese suppression. However Japanese aggression did not discouraged the Korean population and the 1st March movement became as a sign of Korean Nationalists.

PART II: (1) CHINA IN DECLINE

In mid-eighteenth century, China was at the peak of its power and influence. However, during the same time period, conflicts and tensions arose that resulted in wars between China and Europe, demolishing the strength of Qing Dynasty in China. The Europeans were highly irritated by the trade restrictions that China imposed on them and Europeans were trying hard to make China agreed to remove those strict restrictions. The Opium Wars were the result of those strict restrictions on trade that China imposed on European merchants and businessmen (Wallbank, Taylor and Bailkey). These wars made China weak and feeble in its power and resulted in the technological advancement of Europe and eventually Europe gained power from the collapse of Qing Dynasty.

The British East India Company was established in 1600 by a royal charter that dominated most of the trade of Europe. Most of the Maritime Trade in Asia is also occupied by the British East India Company. The Company wanted to develop direct trade relations with China, but the Chinese government was reluctant in doing so. However, in 1699, Chinese allowed the British East India Company to had direct trade relations with them. Since Chinese allowed the Company to trade with them directly, the Company established their first trade port at Canton. Mainly, Britain import tea and silk from China. The export of tea to Britain had gained so much popularity that in 1700, about 60% of the total trade of Britain comprised of tea alone, from China. The silk and porcelain also became popular things of China that were imported to Britain. In return, China demanded silver from the Company and this created high threat to Britain that their silver reserves were being transferred to China because of export of tea, silk and porcelain.

The increasing presence of foreigners in China had alarmed Qing government, so they made severe restrictions on the movement of British merchants in China. In 1760, only a single port of China was made opened for merchants, i.e. Canton Port. Other restrictions were also imposed on foreign merchants such as; merchants could reside in Canton only during the months of October to March and could visit the city only thrice a month. The direct trading between British merchants and Chinese civilians was also banned. The Canton system created trade imbalance between the two countries. There was high demand for Chinese goods (tea, silk and porcelain), whereas very low demand for European goods, which caused outflow of silver reserves from Europe into China. In this way Europe had to face serious trade imbalances.

The McCartney Mission of 1793 and The Amherst Mission of 1816 were led by Europeans in order to ease the terms of trade between Europe and China, but both the missions failed to convince China to liberalize the trade restrictions. When all the efforts by the British failed, they used "Opium" as a source in order to remove their trade imbalances. Opium, which is more addictive than tea, was being exported to China by British. Millions of Chinese became seriously addictive to the drug and in this way the demand for Opium increased at a rapid pace by Chinese and silver out flowed from China to Europe. This is how trade of Opium started between Europe and China.

Qing government became aware of the trade of Opium in the country. The problems of crime, fecklessness and social irresponsibility occurred among large number of Chinese. This made Chinese government much serious in order to stop the opium trade. Lin Zexu, which was appointed as an Imperial Commissioner for the Destruction of Opium, started an anti-opium campaign. During the campaign, opium stores were destroyed and opium dealers were arrested. This act of Qing government was unbearable by the British, so two wars were fought by them, which were known as Opium Wars in the history of Chinese civilization.

China had to suffer a lot in both the Opium Wars and had to sign "Unequal Treaties." Among Unequal Treaties, "Treaty of Nanjing" was signed in 1842, in which China had to made payments to the Britain for the losses they bore during the first Opium War. China had to open five more ports for foreign trade and also had to give extraterritoriality to British citizens in China. Moreover, Hong Kong was occupied by Britain in the Treaty of Nanjing. In June 1858, China signed another Treaty, known as "Treaty of Tianjin." China had to open more ports for foreign trade, gave permission to foreign legislation in Beijing (capital of China), allowed Christian missionary and had to give legal status to the import of opium. The Treaty of Nanjing and the Treaty of Tianjin, along with few other treaties were referred as unequal treaties.

The wars with foreigners and foreigner's invasion into China were not the only reasons of the decline of Qing Dynasty. The internals rebels in China and other internal problems were also responsible for the decline of Qing government. The incredible…[continue]

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