The Blueshirts tended to brutalise society into obedience. In this sense, Chiang tried to enforce his authority by force - something that Hitler and Mussolini tried to do. Chiang's attempt to win the support of the people in his territory was minimal Meanwhile, on Taiwan, throughout the 1950s and 1960s, intermittent skirmishes occurred throughout the mainland's coastal and peripheral regions, though American reluctance to be drawn into a larger conflict left Chiang Kai-shek too weak to "retake the mainland" as he constantly vowed. ROC fighter aircraft bombed mainland targets and commandos, sometimes numbering up to 80, landed repeatedly on the mainland to kill PLA soldiers, kidnap CCP cadres, destroy infrastructure, and seize documents. The ROC lost about 150 men in one raid in 1964.Mao's prestige rose steadily after the failure of the Comintern-directed urban insurrections. In late 1931 he was able to proclaim the establishment of the Chinese Soviet Republic under his chairmanship in Ruijin, Jiangxi Province. The Soviet-oriented CCP Political Bureau came to Ruijin at Mao's invitation with the intent of dismantling his apparatus. But, although he had yet to gain membership in the Political Bureau, Mao dominated the proceedings.
Few Chinese had any illusions about Japanese designs on China. ...
The Japanese began to push from south of the Great Wall into northern China and into the coastal provinces. Chinese fury against Japan was predictable, but anger was also directed against the Guomindang government, which at the time was more preoccupied with anti-Communist extermination campaigns than with resisting the Japanese invaders. The importance of "internal unity before external danger" was forcefully brought home in December 1936, when Nationalist troops (who had been ousted from Manchuria by the Japanese) mutinied at Xi'an. The mutineers forcibly detained Chiang Kai-shek for several days until he agreed to cease hostilities against the Communist forces in northwest China and to assign Communist units combat duties in designated anti-Japanese front areas.
At Yan'an and elsewhere in the "liberated areas," Mao was able to adapt Marxism-Leninism to Chinese conditions. He taught party cadres to lead the masses by living and working with them, eating their food, and thinking their thoughts. The Red Army fostered an image of conducting guerrilla warfare in defense of the people. Communist troops adapted to changing wartime conditions and became a seasoned fighting force. Mao also began preparing for the establishment of a new China. In 1940 he outlined the program of the Chinese Communists for an eventual seizure of power. His teachings became the central tenets of the CCP doctrine that came to be formalized as Mao Zedong Thought. With skillful organizational and propaganda work, the Communists increased party membership from 100,000 in 1937 to 1.2 million by 1945.
In 1945 China emerged from the war nominally a great military power but actually a