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Outofin

Foreigners in ancient Chinese history

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andycmda

well, most Manchus in China live in cities and are descendents of the royal families back in Qing dynasty. Now there are many Chinese immigrants from mainly Northeastern China living in North America who happen to be of Manchu ethnicity. You can never tell they are Manchus unless they tell you they are Manchus. But what difference does it make? None. They are Chinese, they are the same as all the other Han Chinese. They are 华人, aren't they?

But if a Tibetan Chinese is living abroad, westerners will consider that person a Tibetan, not a Chinese.

Hans never conquered Tibet, it was the Mongols who first conquered it in Yuan dynasty, but Ming dynasty failed to conquer Tibet, then the Manchus conquered Tibet, and it's part of China since then.

The false perception that Chinese = Han is similar to the false perception that Iranian = Persian. The Persian Empire lasted for a long time in history and people usually think Iranians today are the descendents of Persians. But only 60% of Iranian population are Persians today. So when we talk about Iranian history, it does not only include Persians, but also other ethnicities.

So that's why when we talk about Chinese history, it's not only Han history. Of course, early Chinese history were all about Hans because other ethnicities were uncivilized. But during Tang dynasty, when Tibetans and Koreans regularly sent tributes to Tang government, those countries became part of Chinese history. The China, as a broad geographical definition of the land, started to include Mongols, Manchus, and so on.

When the west invented the word "China", which has nothing to do with what Chinese call "Zhong Guo" or "Chung Kuo", they refer to that Qing Empire, so all citizens living under Qing Empire should be considered Chinese. If we logically think of this, since the Qing Empire is also called Manchurian Empire, then since China was used to refer to Manchurian Empire, then the most Chinese of all CHinese are the Manchus, not Hans. Since Mongols had long relationships with Manchus and they were allies in history, Mongols must also be Chinese.

Why is Beijing an ideal city to be a Chinese capital city? It never was a capital city under Han civilization until after Tang dynasty when the Liao dynasty controlled by a northern ethnic group dominated North East China and made Beijing its southern capital. Later on, the Manchus came to establish the Jin dynasty, made Beijing its capital and forced the song dynasty to reduce to Southern Song dynasty. Then the Mongols came, made Beijing as capital of Mongolian Empire. When the Ming dynasty was established (the only Han civilization dynasty during the last 800 years), it made Nanjing its capital at first but thought it was a southern city so it soon made Beijing its capital. Manchus continued this tradition in Qing dynasty.

So Beijing had served as a capital city since 1000 years ago. But only in Ming dynasty was it served as a capital city of a Han civilization. Beijing, thereofore, does not represent the true Han culture, but a Chinese culture that was a result of a culture mixing and assimilation between Hans, Manchus, Mongols and so on.

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bhchao
You can never tell they are Manchus unless they tell you they are Manchus. But what difference does it make? None. They are Chinese, they are the same as all the other Han Chinese. They are 华人, aren't they?

I agree with you that Manchus are Chinese. Many of today's ethnic Manchus were products of marriages between the Manchus and Han Chinese starting from the late Qing dynasty, and thus became assimilated into the mainstream.

Saying that Manchus are not Chinese is the same as saying Tang Taizong was not Chinese. He was at least 25% Xianbei (maybe 50%) because his grandmother was Xianbei. His father Li Yuan married into the Toba clan, and could possibly have Xianbei blood himself. But are Li Yuan and Li Shimin considered Chinese emperors? The fact that they were not 100% Han should not matter at all.

Even if they were 100% Xianbei, they would still be Chinese emperors since the Xianbei were assimilated into the mainstream prior to the Sui dynasty.

But if a Tibetan Chinese is living abroad, westerners will consider that person a Tibetan, not a Chinese.

Hans never conquered Tibet, it was the Mongols who first conquered it in Yuan dynasty, but Ming dynasty failed to conquer Tibet, then the Manchus conquered Tibet, and it's part of China since then.

The history in that statement is correct. However you need to be careful with that statement even though it may make logical sense. The Manchus also conquered Taiwan, but should that automatically mean that Taiwan is part of China today?

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Outofin

(How come the discussion has changed to the policy on minorities? )

I once read a book about psychology. It says if you want to persuade another person, for example, you want to sell something to him, you’d better to dress like him, act like him, and speak like him. The tricky part is that, you should count his breaths, and synchronize your breath with him. Why? Because it’s an instinct in human’s sub-consciousness to accept those who look like himself and repel those who don’t.

This is hopeless.

The elites have been working very hard to build up a whole set of ethics, like “don’t judge people by their skins”, “everyone is born equal”. I appreciate their efforts and admire their achievements. But there are still tremendous issues here.

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LeafAndSunshine
The Manchus also conquered Taiwan, but should that automatically mean that Taiwan is part of China today?

If you ask that quesiton to a mainland Chinese, I believe with extremly high

confidence that the answer will be an unequivocal "YES".

LNS

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Dennis

If you know the Chinese language ,culture and history then you would know that this ''Çhinese'' person in North America with the "chinese" name 爱新觉罗 is not Chinese but Manchu.

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Ian_Lee
The Manchus also conquered Taiwan, but should that automatically mean that Taiwan is part of China today?

Apparently FDR, Churchill and Chiang Kai Shek thought so. Otherwise they would not pledge to RETURN Taiwan to China in the Cairo Declaration in 1943.

Since it was Manchu Qing Dynasty that conquered and subsequently ceded Taiwan, then why did the above statesmen say that Taiwan should be returned to ROC?

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Ian_Lee
If you know the Chinese language ,culture and history then you would know that this ''Çhinese'' person in North America with the "chinese" name 爱新觉罗 is not Chinese but Manchu.

In North America, probably nobody knows what/who is a Manchu other than watching the film "The Manchurian Candidate".

Moreover, the more anyone knows about Chinese language, culture and history, the more one knows that Manchu is Chinese.

In fact, 70 years ago the Japanese also thought that the Manchus were not Chinese. But at the end they paid a heavy price for their wrong thought.

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fenlan

It is a fallacy that China has 56 ethnic groups. There are many unrecognised groups. In some cases, in Yunnan, one recognised group includes unrelated tribes speaking a large number of unrelated languages. In other cases, the party insists that people who do not regard themselves as Han are Han, eg the chuanlan and chuanqing people of Guizhou, who have tried many times to gain recognition as separate groups. Similarly Yao and Miao include groups hundreds of miles apart that speak different languages, on the presumption that originally their languages may have had a common origin. In fact there are around 400 languages spoken in China. There is a book by a Christian group that gives a separate page to each ethnic group.

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andycmda
If you know the Chinese language ,culture and history then you would know that this ''Çhinese'' person in North America with the "chinese" name 爱新觉罗 is not Chinese but Manchu

I would say 爱新觉罗 is the Hanized version of Manchu family name which indicates this person's forefather was a Manchu not a Han, but regardless of Manchus or Hans, they are both Chinese.

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bhchao
Apparently FDR, Churchill and Chiang Kai Shek thought so. Otherwise they would not pledge to RETURN Taiwan to China in the Cairo Declaration in 1943.

Since it was Manchu Qing Dynasty that conquered and subsequently ceded Taiwan, then why did the above statesmen say that Taiwan should be returned to ROC?

That's appealing to authority. FDR and Churchill wanted to keep Chiang as an ally in the war against Japan. They were probably eager to say anything to keep him as an ally since Chinese troops helped tie down Japanese troops that could have been used elsewhere in the Pacific theater.

Chiang had a tendency to claim territories that he never really controlled, for example Outer Mongolia. Even after the Chiang regime retreated to Taiwan, he fictitiously believed that he controlled mainland China and Outer Mongolia. Well Outer Mongolia has been independent from the ROC and PRC since 1911.

Kangxi subjugated Outer Mongolia in 1691 just 8 years after Shi Lang successfully invaded Taiwan.

Since Outer Mongolia declared independence in 1911 after 220 years under Qing overlordship (compared to 212 years for Taiwan), why does PRC today not claim Outer Mongolia instead as part of its territory? :conf

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wushijiao
Since Outer Mongolia declared independence in 1911 after 220 years under Qing overlordship (compared to 212 years for Taiwan), why does PRC today not claim Outer Mongolia instead as part of its territory?

Stalin.

If I remember correctly, one of the stipulations for the USSR to help liberate Dongbei and give the CCP help in the civil war with the KMT, was that Mao had to relinquish claims to Outer Mongolia (Mongolia at that time was a Soviet dominated/occupied state).

Thus, billions were never educated to think that Mongolia is part of China (I'm not saying whether Taiwan is or not).

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Ian_Lee

Other than Stalin, the main reason is that Chiang Kai Shek had erred in 1946.

In the clause stipulated in the Sino-Soviet Treaty of Friendship and Alliance, he nodded that Outer Mongolia could gain independence after holding a plebscite. And after the result of plebscite affirming independence, ROC recognized Mongolia's independence.

So by 1949 when PRC was established, Mongolia was already an independent country recognized by ROC as well as USSR and a handful of other countries. According to the succession of state theory, PRC had no other way but to recognize Mongolia's independence (of course Mao would not antagonize Stalin too).

In comparison, the warlord's government was more smart on Tibet. They would not sign the Simla Convention in 1915 and therefore did not legitimate any claim by Lhasa.

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Ian_Lee

Bhchao:

That is not an appeal to authority as you assume.

The closest analogy to Taiwan is Alsace-Lorraine. Napoleon III lost Alsace-Lorraine to Prussia in the the Franco-Prussian War in 1870 but it was returned to the French Third Republic in 1919 during the Versailles Conference.

Just like Taiwan, the Third Republic never owned Alsace-Lorraine and it was ceded by Napoleon III to Prussia. Then why was it "returned" to the Third Republic 49 years afterwards?

Based on the succession of state theory, the succeeding government has the right to inherit the former state's rights as well as obligations.

So that was why 48 years after Qing lost Taiwan, FDR and Churchill thought that Taiwan should be "returned" to ROC. And that was why 49 years after Napoleon III lost Alsace-Lorraine, the Allied Powers still thought that Alsace-Lorraine should be returned to the French Third Republic.

But neither ROC had owned Taiwan nor the French Third Republic had owned Alsace-Lorraine. But their succession rights were never questioned.

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bhchao

I don't think Chiang recognized Outer Mongolia's independence even after he retreated to Taiwan. In 1961 when Outer Mongolia tried to gain admission into the UN, Chiang opposed its bid because he insisted that he should represent Outer Mongolia in its "foreign affairs".

葉公超 lost his job as Taiwan's ambassador to the US because he did not effectively prevent Outer Mongolia's entry into the UN.

At that time the Soviet Union wanted Outer Mongolia to join the UN, but Chiang opposed it. The Soviets then threatened to cut off African support for Chiang's regime by vetoing Mauritania's bid to join the UN.

Outer Mongolia eventually won entry, causing a huge loss of face for Chiang. He responded by firing Ambassador Yeh.

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bhchao
Based on the succession of state theory, the succeeding government has the right to inherit the former state's rights as well as obligations.

So that was why 48 years after Qing lost Taiwan, FDR and Churchill thought that Taiwan should be "returned" to ROC.

If that theory was true, then ROC and PRC should inherit Outer Mongolia too. Yielding to Stalin's wishes creates a double standard for Outer Mongolia and Taiwan.

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Ian_Lee

Bhchao:

It is not yielding to Stalin. It is yielding to Truman.

In the Yalta agreement in early 1945, the recognition of Mongolian independence was one of the terms Stalin agreed to attack Japan.

Without knowing the effectiveness of A-Bomb, Truman in turn pressed Chiang Kai Shek to yield to Stalin to avoid further American bloodshed if a full scale invasion on Japan was launched. .

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bhchao

Ian, I highly doubt that was the case.

First of all, Truman didn't need Soviet help. One of the likely reasons why he gave the green light to drop the bomb was to end the war quickly before the Soviets had a chance to enter the picture. The US did not want the slightest Soviet participation in the postwar occupation of Japan.

The Japanese were already giving signals that they were going to surrender right after Hiroshima, and thus the second atomic bomb attack was probably unnecessary. The Soviets declared war on Japan only after it looked very likely that Japan was going to surrender soon.

Mao also had a tendency to claim territories that he never really controlled. Surely he also would have laid claim to Outer Mongolia. But why did he respect Mongolia's independence? It was because of Stalin, not because of Truman. In order for Mao to honor that independence, a credible threat or punishment had to exist if he chose not to respect Mongolia's independence. That threat had to be the Soviet Union. Mao was very anti-American at the time and given his history of calling the US "imperialist", it is very unlikely he would have listened to Truman. Mao had much to lose if he disobeyed Stalin's wishes since the Soviets gave the largest amount of aid to the PRC prior to 1957.

Also Yalta was an agreement between FDR, Churchill, and Stalin. Critics of Yalta have argued that FDR and Churchill gave too many concessions to Stalin. Truman was the opposite from FDR in this regard, and already showed anti-Soviet attitudes at Potsdam.

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Ian_Lee
Mao also had a tendency to claim territories that he never really controlled.

A regime does not need to claim territory based on the fact that it previously has controlled over it.

Taipei just concluded another futile round of fishing right talks over Diaoyutai with Tokyo. But ROC has never controlled Diaoyutai (1945-1971 Diaoyutai was under US military control while afterwards it was under the administrative rule of Okinawa Prefecture of Japan). Since ROC never controlled Diaoyutai, then why did it stake its claim on the islets as well as the fishing right in its surrounding water?

On the other extreme, Qing, ROC and PRC never controlled Macau. But Portugal still recognized that PRC has the legal right to claim Macau.

To stake a claim on a territory is based on a combination of legal, historical, geographical and cultural factors.

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bhchao
To stake a claim on a territory is based on a combination of legal, historical, geographical and cultural factors.

Ian, I understand where you are coming from, especially on Alsace-Lorraine supporting the "succession of state theory" and how it relates to Taiwan.

But that theory has not been consistent in history. Take Cyprus for example. The Ottoman Turkish empire conquered Cyprus, and held it for 300 years before Britain annexed it as a colony in the early 20th century. Then Cyprus became independent in 1960.

If the succession of state theory is valid, then how come Cyprus was not returned to Turkey in 1960 despite being only 45 miles away from Turkey, and the fact that the Ottoman empire ruled over it for 300 years?

So Cyprus blows this succession of state theory out of the water.

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Ian_Lee

Bhchao:

May I remind you that the nature of Cyprus and Taiwan is quite different.

Cyprus was voluntarily offered to Britain by Sultan during the Ottoman period. In fact, the island was offered 3 times (1833, 1841 and 1845) to Britain. But Britain did not accept it until 1878.

But Taiwan, like Alsace-Lorraine, was involuntarily taken away from China (France) as a result of war. To China (France), the grabbing is injustice.

So at the end of another war when the defeated became the victor, naturally the victor would undo their perceived injustice and take back what they thought they were entitled to.

But in the case of Cyprus, there has been no injustice since the offer was not a result of war.

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