Segments in this Video

Communists Make Long March (02:00)


The founders of modern China belong to a different generation. They embarked on the Long March, a massive military retreat undertaken by the Red Armies of the Chinese Communist Party. The Long March began the ascent of Mao Zedong to power.

Chiang Kai-Shek vs. Mao Zedong (03:00)

Fearing that the Shanghai communists had ambitions to seize power on their own, Chiang Kai-shek unleashes a massacre. Mao Zedong believes in the power of the peasants and working class. He organizes them into guerilla forces.

Prelude to the Long March of the Communists (02:42)

In October 1933, Chiang Kai-shek determines to starve out the communists one and for all. Failure in open warfare led the communists, the Red Army, to retreat. They did not know they would embark on a year's journey across 6000 miles.

Red Army Begins the Long March (02:28)

The Long March begins in October 1934. Thirty-five women march among the 86,000 communists, believing that communism was the road to liberation. Mao Zedong liberates women from traditional roles and teaches them to read.

Massacre: Red Army vs. Kuomintang (02:10)

The Red Army reaches the Xiang river where the Kuomintang caught up with them. A massacre ensues in which 50,000 soldiers are lost. Mao Zedong becomes the effective leader of the Long March and leads them north to the Dadu river.

Red Army: Pilgrimage to New Utopia (03:46)

Hungry and exhausted, 30,000 remaining communist soldiers travel through remote country, fighting daily skirmishes with the enemy. Under Mao, the journey became a pilgrimage to a new Utopia. They set up "soviets" in villages.

Red Army Faces Annihilation (03:01)

The Dadu river with its treacherous rocks and whirlpools formed a barrier for the Red Army. Behind them, the Kuomintang were determined to stop. Facing annihilation, Mao marches his troops upstream to the Luding Bridge.

Red Army Heroes of the Dadu (02:22)

At the Luding bridge that links China with Tibet, the Kuomintang removes all the planks, leaving only chains for the Red Army to cross. The advance force of the Red Army sent as assault forces became historical heroes of the Dadu.

People's Republic of China: Future Utopia? (02:45)

Ultimately, 8000 communists finish the Long March in October 1936. The communists indoctrinate local villagers in Maoist ideology and strategies of guerilla war. In 1949, the People's Republic of China with Mao as its leader is proclaimed.

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The Heroes of Dadu: The People’s Revolution in China

Part of the Series : Red Chapters: Turning Points in the History of Communism
DVD Price: $149.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $224.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $149.95



The Dadu is a swift and dangerous river, long associated with the defeat of armies that could not escape across it. For the Maoist Communists in 1935, crossing that river meant nothing less than the survival of their cause. This program documents the story of the Communist revolution in China, providing an excellent overview of the years before, during, and after the Party’s rise to power. In addition, veterans of the Long March recount the story of the legendary trek from which only 8,000 of the original 86,000 members survived: a yearlong march that took them across 18 mountain ranges and 24 rivers—including the perilous Dadu. (25 minutes)

Length: 26 minutes

Item#: BVL10521

Copyright date: ©1999

Closed Captioned

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