III. The Cold War in Asia
A. The Occupation of Japan
1. The Potsdam Conference.
- Reorganized Japanese School System.
- Punished militarists, releases Communists from prison.
- Disarmed (Title IX).
- Emperor reduced to figurehead “Endure the unendurable”.
- Breaks up the ziabatsu.
2. SCAP: Supreme Commander of Allied Powers.
- MacArthur becomes Supreme Commander of Allied Powers (aka: King).
- San Francisco Treaty, 1951.
- Japan now seen as wall between Communist China and West.
- Western Capitalist influence in Asia and US military bases strategically close to USSR.
- Build ziabatsu back up to combat recession, rearrested Communists, broke up labor unions.
B. “Red China”
1. China given seat in the United Nations.
2. Chiang Kai Shek and the Nationalists vs. Mao Tse Tung and the Communists.
- Join forces to fight the Japanese during the “Greater East Asian War” (Pacific Theatre).
- Nationalist hold back, stockpile U.S. weapons, aid to fight Communists after the war.
- Nationalist government corrupt, did not have the confidence of the Chinese peasants.
3. Nationalists overcome by Communists; 1949 flee to Taiwan.
- U.S. will not recognize Mao’s government in the United Nations.
- USSR will boycott UN on this point (will become key later).
4. Truman blamed for “loosing” China.
- How could they turn on us? (economic partnerships, “protectors”).
- Internal corruption, communism only explanation.
C. Korea M*A*S*H
1. Divided into zones like Germany.
- Supposed to be a temporary measure to fight the Japanese army.
- USA, USSR establish “friendly” governments N. and S. of the 38th parallel.
- U.N. recognizes S. Korea and Syngman Rhee over N and Kim Il Sung.
2. June 25, 1950 – North Korea invades South (Believed to be orchestrated by USSR: “Monolithic”).
- North Koreans push South Koreans nearly all the way to bay.
- Seen as a test of will of the United States to protect the free world from Communism.
- Domino effect: NO country was unimportant; extends Cold War to Asia.
- USSR boycott of UN over China allows a 9-0 vote in the Security Council to send UN troops to South Korea, MacArthur in command.
3. Truman sends American troops WITHOUT the consent of Congress, cites NSC-68 (sound familiar?).
- NSC-68, 1950: decided USSR wanted to take over the world, starts work on Hydrogen bomb.
- 1000x more powerful than Atom-bomb.
- “Police Action” (seen as centralization of power).
4. Attack at Inchon.
- Dangerous amphibious landing: tides, surprise attack.
- Turns tide of war.
- Stop at 38th parallel or keep going?
- Teach “commies” a lesson, Truman is not soft on Communism.
- China warns U.S. not to get too close, Truman, MacArthur warns.
- 200,000 Chinese cross border, turns tide again (surprise).
- A New dilemma.
- Drop bomb? Truman vs MacArthur (political and personality clashes).
- MacArthur publicly criticizes Truman for not risking war w/ China.
- MacArthur accuses Truman of being soft on Communism.
- MacArthur fired, hearing by Congress.
5. Stalemate by 1951, same line; Frustrating; US can’t use all its power (USSR had bomb).
- One hand tied behind back.
6. 38th parallel becomes permanent in 1953.
- 54,000 Americans died, 2 million Chinese “The Forgotten War”.