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Old 22-11-2013, 07:55 PM   #68
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Lightbulb Boxer Beat

The Boxer Rebellion, Boxer Uprising or Yihetuan Movement was a violent anti-foreigner movement which took place in China between 1899 and 1901. It was initiated by the Righteous Harmony Society and was motivated by proto-nationalist sentiments and opposition to foreign imperialism and Christian missions. The Great Powers intervened and defeated the Boxer Rebellion, in a humiliation for China..

After several months of growing violence against foreign and Christian presence in Shandong and the North China plain, in June 1900 Boxer fighters, convinced they were invulnerable to foreign weapons, converged on Beijing with the slogan "Support the Qing, exterminate the foreigners". They forced foreigners and Chinese Christians to seek refuge in the Legation Quarter. In response to reports of an armed foreign invasion and its demands, the initially hesitant Empress Dowager Cixi, urged by the conservatives of the Imperial Court, supported the Boxers and on June 21 authorized war on foreign powers. Diplomats, foreign civilians and soldiers, and Chinese Christians in the Legation Quarter were under siege by the Imperial Army of China and the Boxers for 55 days...

The Society of Righteous and Harmonious Fists, known by foreigners as the Boxers, or "Yihe Magic Boxing", was a secret society founded in the northern coastal province of Shandong consisting largely of people who had lost their livelihoods because of imperialism as well as natural disasters.. The group originated from the Lí sect of the Ba gua religious group.. Foreigners came to refer to the well-trained, athletic young men as "Boxers," because of the martial arts and calisthenics they practiced.. The Boxers' primary feature was spirit possession, which involved "the whirling of swords, violent prostrations, and chanting incantations to Taoist and Buddhist spirits"..

The Boxers believed that through training, diet, martial arts and prayer they could perform extraordinary feats, such as flight. Furthermore, they popularly claimed that millions of spirit soldiers would descend from the heavens and assist them in purifying China of foreign influences. The Boxers consisted of local farmers, peasants, and other workers made desperate by disastrous floods and widespread opium addiction and blamed Christian missionaries, Chinese Christians, and the Europeans who colonized their country..

Several secret societies in Shandong predated the Boxers. In 1895, Yuxian, a Manchu who was then prefect of Caozhou and would later become provincial governor, acquired the help of the Big Swords Society in fighting against bandits. Although the Big Swords had heterodox practices, they were not seen as bandits by Chinese authorities. Their efficiency in defeating banditry led to a flood of cases overwhelming the magistrates' courts, to which the Big Swords responded by executing the bandits that were apprehended.. The Big Swords relentlessly hunted the bandits, but the bandits converted to Catholic Christianity.. This gave them legal immunity from prosecution and placed them under the protection of the foreigners.. The Big Swords responded by attacking bandit Catholic churches and burning them.. As a result, Yuxian executed several Big Sword leaders, but did not punish anyone else.. More secret societies started emerging after this...

Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox missionaries and their Chinese converts were massacred throughout northern China, some by Boxers and others by government troops and authorities.. After the declaration of war on Western powers in June 1900, Yuxian, who had been named governor of Shanxi in March of that year, implemented a brutal anti-foreign and anti-Christian policy. On 9 July, reports circulated that he had executed 44 foreigners (including women and children) from missionary families whom he had invited to the provincial capital Taiyuan under the promise to protect them.. Although the purported eye witness accounts have recently been questioned as improbable, this event became a notorious symbol of Chinese madness, known as the Taiyuan Massacre..The Chinese Honghuzi bandits of Manchuria, who had fought alongside the Boxers in the war, did not stop when the Boxer rebellion was over, and continued guerilla warfare against the Russian occupation up to the Russo-Japanese war when the Russians were defeated by Japan...

Last edited by lightgiver; 22-11-2013 at 08:03 PM.
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