JohnRawls wrote:Mao was a great leader, he didnt develop the country economically, but he unified the country, prevented it from falling apart and created a stable beroucracy to westernise the country.(After almost 50-100 years of either occupation, foreighn power medling and civil war) Before Mao, China was a country of peasants(thats why the previouse 2 candidats failed by the way), after Mao the country had a stable, united, one party berocracy and a semblance of industry to rely on.
Mao Zedong can definitely be called a great military and possibly even nationalist leader. The CCP were definitely far more ahead in fighting the Japanese than the reluctant and cautious KMT. Unifying China was also a monumental accomplishment.
It is true that from 1926 to 1949 the KMT had failed to significantly industrialise China but at the same time it is important to remember that they were struggling with the Japanese from the early 1930s onwards. Moreover they had numerous other problems to deal with like Uyghur separatism in the far west. The existence of these problems is of course no excuse for their failure to deal with them when the CCP managed to do so. However by 1949 the Kuomintang were learning from their mistakes and had begun enacting land reform just like the communists. If we look at Taiwan and what Chiang was able to do there it becomes obvious which leader would have been better.
Chiang's problem was he was beholden to certain bourgeois interests as well as the middle class. Because of this he could not really do anything to alienate. The CCP did not have this problem because their support base rested on the masses.
We must not forget the tremendous violence which took place under Chairman Mao. The Cultural Revolution and Great Leap Forward cannot be dismissed.
Potemkin wrote:In no sense can Sun Yat-Sen be described as a 'conservative'. He was a revolutionary whose actions led to the collapse of the 2000 year old imperial system in China, and he often expressed great admiration for Marxism and communism. By modern standards, he was socially conservative of course. But then, so was Lenin.
Sun Yat-sen was definitely not a Marxist. It is true that he was a socialist and was influenced by Georgism but do we have any actual evidence that he became a Marxist by the end of his life? Were the Three Principles of the People not quite distinct from Marxism?
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