By J. Kennedy M.A. (auth.)
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Earlier in his revolutionary career, Sun Yat-sen had looked to Western countries for aid and encouragement; by 1923 he was ready and willing to take help and advice from Communist Russia. The Kuomintang was formed in 1912 as an outgrowth of Dr Sun's earlier 'Revolutionary League' (Tung Meng Hui) and its strength lay in south China and especially in the Canton area where Sun had his base. The reorganisation of the party with Russian help enabled it to work more efficiently and to spread its appeal further afield.
The bloodshed of 1947 was a very unhappy legacy bequeathed to the relationships between the two new States. By a bitter irony of history the revered old prophet of non-violence, Mahatma Gandhi, was assassinated in 1948 by a Hindu fanatic who felt that the Mahatma had betrayed Hindu orthodoxy. By mid-century, India and Pakistan were attempting to shape their new constitutions. Nehru's India represented an experiment in both parliamentary democracy and in the principle of secularism for the State.
One obstacle to this renewal was the Manchu government. The Manchu dynasty had never been universally acceptable in China and anri-dynastic rebellions from the south in particular had been a marked feature of Chinese history in the nineteenth century. After the Boxer Rising, the dynasty lived on uneasily for a decade in the face of increasing revolutionary threats raised by leaders who were mainly living in the Treaty Ports or abroad in exile. In an attempt to hold back revolution, the Manchus promised to introduce a constitution modelled on that of Japan, but real power lay with the armed forces whose main purpose was to preserve the regime.