Second Sino-Japanese War

I know you guys are doing you’re between two wars series, but will you dedicate specific episodes to the Second Sino-Japanese War? I know it takes a ton of work to produce episodes, but could there be a month by month coverage of it or will there at least be special episodes dedicated to important events during that like the rape of Nanking. I know that WW2 didn’t officially start until late 1938 on the European side. However, there were important events happening in the Pacific that would shape how that war was fought during the Second World War. I think that they should be given their own episodes instead of wrapped up in a ten-minute year over-view video like the between two wars series is doing. Love the between two wars series BTW keep up the great work!

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You can rest assured that this will be one of our main focuses come 1937.


I know that you guys have partnerships with Feature History and other channels, maybe they could go ahead and begin covering it to allow it to be as fleshed out as possible. Or to expand my idea above maybe instead of a month by month you do a monthly three month wrap up of what took place during the war. You guys are awesome and I’m so glad to be a part of “making history!”


Very often forgotten… I recently read that the Japanese operations in 1944 (Ichi go) weakened considerably the Nationalist Army and as a consequence allowed the rise of the Communist party. Probably China becoming so influent nowadays, more content about that of the WWII will be useful to understand modern China.


Note: The Nationalist forces and KMT are one and the same. For this post I use the two nouns interchangably.

The Chinese army in general was already in a weakened state prior to the Second Sino-Japanese War as a result of Chiang Kai-shek’s war against the Chinese Communists (Chinese Civil War Part 1. Part 2 started shortly after WW2 ended).

In 1937, when the Japanese attacked Northern China via Manchuria, Chiang Kai-shek was still busy attacking the Communist bases in Western China. His main priority was to eradicate the Communist first, THEN attack the Japanese. As a result, public opinion of the Kuomintang (KMT) deteriorated rapidly at the onset of the Second Sino-Japanese War. This culminated in the Xian incident whereby Chiang was abducted by a local warlord in order to force him to cooperate with the Communist. Contrary to contemporary propaganda, the Communist were not very welcome with the idea, and almost assassinated Chiang when he was in captivity. However, some leaders in the Chinese Communist Party saw that letting Chiang live was more profitable in the long run and so a Chinese United Front was created to repel the Japanese invader.

During the Second Sino-Japanese War, some Communist forces were incorporated into the Chinese United Front yet the bulk of the Communist forces were fighting a guerilla war against the Japanese in Northwestern China. With the collapse of Shanghai and the subsequent collapse of Nanjing and the flight of the central KMT government to Wuhan then Chongqing, the Communist managed to turn public opinion and created the propaganda that the Communists were the ones who could withstand the Japanese juggernaut and that they were the one who could deliver China for the Chinese, and not let China fall into the hands of foreigners again. The Communists even managed to fool the Western democracies in showing that if China falls to the Communists, the CCP would not let China become a Soviet styled country. This, coupled with the extreme corruption within the KMT leadership, meant disaster for KMT’s future.

Thus, KMT’s political fate was practically sealed by the time of their flight from Nanjing, and so what happened from 1937 to 1944 were a string of military failures which was rooted in the extreme internal corruption in the KMT and the hollow nature of the Chinese United Front, which was not united at all. Granted, that the KMT still had considerable forces against the Communist at the end of the Second Sino-Japanese War and the KMT were successful initially but Soviet military assistance from Manchuria and Afghanistan helped precipitate the obliteration of Nationalist forces in North and Northwestern China. The red tide swept over Northern China from late 1947 onwards and ultimately delivered the Chinese mainland into Communist hands.