The Lips Protecting China’s Teeth – Part 3/3

February 21, 2011

After reading parts one and two, I want you to wear China’s shoes for a moment.

If you were one of China’s leaders, ask yourself what you would think and do when one or more of the nations that challenged the sphere of influence China once dominated for two thousand years was hanging about as if it were a threat.

This foreign nation, the United States, which is more than six thousand miles from China, has troops based in South Korea, Japan, Okinawa and protects an enemy of yours in Taiwan, the Nationalist Chinese (KMT).

In 1949, under Mao, the KMT was defeated ending the Chinese Civil war of 1925 – 1949.

Before 1925, the founder of your republic, Sun Yat-sen, asked the United States for help to end the anarchy and chaos that was sweeping across China after the Qing Dynasty collapsed, but America refused as did the other major democracies. Then Sun Yat-sen turned to the Soviet Union, who said yes.

The Communist Party you belong to didn’t start the 1925 Civil War. It was started by the KMT’s leader Chiang Kai-shek, who then retreated to Taiwan taking China’s treasury and treasures with him leaving China broke.

Chiang Kai-shek was a brutal dictator that ruled Taiwan under martial law. He was protected by a country that took part in the Second Opium War against China and again in the 1900 invasion that brought an end to what the West calls the Boxer Rebellion.

Would you be suspicious? Would you want to have a strong, modern military to deter other nations from attacking China as China was attacked in the 16th, 19th and 20th centuries?

You may take China’s shoes off now.

The Chinese do not lack courage. Any “fool” that thinks the Chinese are unwilling to fight to preserve their culture and/or protect their country from foreign invaders need only study China’s history to see otherwise.

Wise men learn from history and do not repeat the same mistakes.

Return to The Lips Protecting China’s Teeth – Part 2

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

If you want to subscribe to iLook China, there is a “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar.


The Lips Protecting China’s Teeth – Part 2/3

February 20, 2011

With military bases in the Philippines, South Korea, Japan and Okinawa, it was easy for America to replace France in Vietnam, which led to the Second War in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia from 1955 to 1975.

That was when Mao’s China said that Vietnam and China were “as close as the lips and the teeth”.  Mao asked, “What happens to the teeth when the lips are gone?”

What the French and Americans did in Vietnam was not the only reason China wants to keep a buffer between itself and countries such as England, France, Japan and the United States.

Great Britain conquered Burma after three Anglo-Burmese Wars in 1824 to 1886. Singapore was added in 1819. Then the British acquired Melaka in 1824 then expanded into the Malay Peninsula between 1874 and 1914.

Thailand was the only Southeast Asian state to remain independent during the colonial period yet Thailand, which was known as Siam paid tribute to China 48 times mostly after 1780.

The next war between China and Japan took place in 1894 to 1895. China lost and ceded Taiwan, the adjoining Pescadores, and the Liaotung Peninsula in Manchuria to Japan.

China’s defeat encouraged the Western powers to make further demands of the Chinese government, which triggered a reform movement and the beginning of revolutionary activity against the Manchu rulers of China.

While China was helpless, Japan occupied Korea and held it as a colony from 1900 – 1945.

In 1903, a British military expedition invaded Tibet interfering in Tibetan affairs to gain a base in one of the buffer states surrounding India. The British were unsuccessful and left in 1904.

However, in 1913, soon after the Qing Dynasty collapsed, the British convinced Tibet to declare freedom from being one of China’s tributaries after being occupied and loosely governed by China since the Yuan Dynasty in the 13th century.

In 1900, the Boxer Rebellion led to another foreign invasion by the eight-nation alliance of Japan, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, the United States, Germany, Austria-Hungry and Italy.

During that invasion, China’s Imperial army lost 20,000 troops and about 19,000 civilians while the foreign invaders lost 2,500 soldiers.

Return to The Lips Protecting China’s Teeth – Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

If you want to subscribe to iLook China, there is a “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar.


The Lips Protecting China’s Teeth – Part 1/3

February 19, 2011

China sees nations that share its border as its lips and questions what happens to the teeth when the lips are gone.

However, which countries are considered China’s lips?

That question may be answered by the list of countries in Asia that were part of China’s tributary system during the Qing Dynasty: Tibet, Khalkha (a subgroup of the Mongolians), Korea, Ryukyu (Okinawa), Annam (Vietnam), Siam (Thailand), Myanmar (Burma), Laos, Nepal, the Dzungar people of Mongolia, and Turpan which is now located in China’s Xinjiang Province.

Although other nations such as the United Kingdom, Russia, Portugal, the Netherlands and even the Holy See (Catholics) paid tribute to China in the 17th and 18th centuries, they are not considered part of China’s lips.

The first foreign threat in China’s sphere of influence was when Spain conquered the Philippines in 1565 – 1571. Although China did not feel threatened by Spain, the conquest did not go unnoticed.

Spain would maintain a colony in the Philippines until the United States defeated Spain in 1898. Then the Philippines became a colony of the US until 1946 and then the US would keep military bases there until 1992. The US occupation of the Philippines was brutal.

The first serious threat to China’s lips was Japan’s invasion of Korea in 1592 with the professed goal of conquering Korea, the Ming Dynasty and then India.

However, a combined Korean and Chinese army defeated the Japanese.

Japan’s second invasion of Korea in 1597 also failed when another joint Chinese and Korean army defeated the Japanese again.

The next threat to China happened when Britain fought China during the First Opium war 1839 – 1842.  Then in 1856 – 1860, Britain was joined by France and the United States to fight and win the Second Opium War.

At about the same time in 1858, France’s navy attacked Da Nang in what is today known as Vietnam in. By 1867, a sizable chunk of Southeast Asia became a French Colony. After World War II, the Vietnamese rebelled and fought the French from 1945 to 1954.

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

If you want to subscribe to iLook China, there is a “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar.