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Long March, 80 years on ep.2: Legacy of the Red Army


10-11-2016 12:57 BJT

Full coverage: 80th Anniversary of the Victory of the Red Army's Long March

China marks the 80th anniversary of the completion of the Long March this year. The Communist Party of China and its Red Army were forced to retreat from 1934 to 1936 to evade the “extermination action” by the Kuomintang. Two hundred thousand troops joined the trek, but fewer than 60,000 survived.

Altogether, four major forces of the army covered more than 30,000 kilometers from the south of China to the north and west. The route took the Red Army through remote regions and extreme conditions.

Ahead of the anniversary, China’s national museum has launched a special exhibit on the Long March, gathering together hundreds of objects and telling stories; some of them never heard before. For those who want to know how the Red Army lived at the time, some displays have “left-overs” from soldiers.

To escape from the Kuomintang, the Red Army traversed 18 snow-covered mountains and crossed numerous marshlands, some of which stretched over 150 kilometers. Eight of those mountains are well over 4,000 meters above sea level, and the soldiers only had hand-painted maps, half-broken weapons, empty stomachs, and no assured sources of supplies.

Surviving the Long March was undoubtedly a miraculous event in the history of warfare.

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