|“||The aim of the Kuomintang is, so far as the interests of China herself are concerned, the restoration of her original frontiers and, in regard to the rest of the world, a gradual advance of all nations from the stage of equality to that of an ideal unity.||„|
|~ Chiang Kai-shek|
The Kuomintang, often referred to in English as the Nationalist Party of China or Chinese Nationalist Party (CNP), is a major political party in the Republic of China in Taiwan, based in the city of Taipei. Formed in 1919, the KMT was the sole ruling party of China from 1928 to 1949 and is currently an opposition political party in the Legislative Yuan.
The predecessor of the Kuomintang, the Revolutionary Alliance (Tongmenghui), was one of the major advocates of the overthrow of the Qing dynasty, the subsequent revolt in 1911, and the proclamation of the Republic of China.
The KMT was founded by Song Jiaoren and Sun Yat-sen shortly after the Xinhai Revolution of 1911. Sun was the provisional President, but he ceded the presidency to Yuan Shikai. Yuan's death in 1916 led to the nation's disintegration in the Warlord Era. Sun deputed Chiang Kai-shek to form the National Revolutionary Army and launch the Northern Expedition that unified much of mainland China and established the capital at Nanjing.
During the following Nanjing decade China achieved substantial economic growth and social progress, but the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945) was disastrous. After the loss of the Chinese Civil War (1945–1949) to Mao Zedong and the Communist Party of China, the KMT retreated to Taiwan where it continued to govern as an authoritarian one-party state. The Nationalist government retained China's United Nations seat until 1971.
Taiwan ceased to be a single-party state in 1986 under President Chiang Ching-kuo, Chiang Kai-shek's son, and political reforms beginning in the 1990s under President Lee Teng-hui loosened the KMT's grip on power. Nevertheless, the KMT remains one of Taiwan's main political parties, with Ma Ying-jeou, elected in 2008 and re-elected in 2012, being the seventh KMT member to hold the office of the presidency.
In the 2016 general and presidential election, the KMT was defeated in both elections and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) gained control of both the Legislative Yuan and the presidency, Tsai Ing-wen being elected President.
The party's guiding ideology is the Three Principles of the People, advocated by Sun Yat-sen. The KMT is a member of the International Democrat Union. Together with the People First Party and New Party, the KMT forms what is known as the Taiwanese Pan-Blue Coalition which supports eventual unification with the mainland. However, the KMT has been forced to moderate its stance by advocating the political and legal status quo of modern Taiwan as political realities make the reunification of China unlikely.
The KMT holds to the one-China policy in that it officially considers that there is only one China, but that the Republic of China rather than the People's Republic of China is its legitimate government under the 1992 Consensus. To ease tensions with the PRC, the KMT has since 2008 endorsed the Three Noes policy as defined by Ma Ying-jeou, namely no unification, no independence and no use of force.
The KMT was a nationalist revolutionary party which had been supported by the Soviet Union. It was organized on the Leninist principle of democratic centralism.
The KMT had several influences upon its ideology by revolutionary thinking. The KMT and Chiang Kai-shek used the words feudal and counterrevolutionary as synonyms for evil and backwardness, and they proudly proclaimed themselves to be revolutionaries. Chiang called the warlords feudalists, and he also called for feudalism and counterrevolutionaries to be stamped out by the KMT.
Chiang showed extreme rage when he was called a warlord, because of the word's negative and feudal connotations. Ma Bufang was forced to defend himself against the accusations, and stated to the news media that his army was a part of "National army, people's power".
Chiang Kai-shek, the head of the KMT, warned the Soviet Union and other foreign countries about interfering in Chinese affairs. He was personally angry at the way China was treated by foreigners, mainly by the Soviet Union, Britain, and the United States. He and his New Life Movement called for the crushing of Soviet, Western, American and other foreign influences in China. Chen Lifu, a CC Clique member in the KMT, said "Communism originated from Soviet imperialism, which has encroached on our country." It was also noted that "the white bear of the North Pole is known for its viciousness and cruelty".
The Blue Shirts Society, a fascist paramilitary organization within the KMT that modeled itself after Benito Mussolini's blackshirts, was anti-foreign and anti-communist, and it stated that its agenda was to expel foreign (Japanese and Western) imperialists from China, crush Communism, and eliminate feudalism. In addition to being anticommunist, some KMT members, like Chiang Kai-shek's right-hand man Dai Li were anti-American, and wanted to expel American influence.
KMT leaders across China adopted nationalist rhetoric. The Chinese Muslim general Ma Bufang of Qinghai presented himself as a Chinese nationalist to the people of China, fighting against British imperialism, to deflect criticism by opponents that his government was feudal and oppressed minorities like Tibetans and Buddhist Mongols. He used his Chinese nationalist credentials to his advantage to keep himself in power.
The KMT pursued a sinicization policy, it was stated that "the time had come to set about the business of making all natives either turn Chinese or get out" by foreign observers of KMT policy. It was noted that "Chinese colonization" of "Mongolia and Manchuria" led "to a conviction that the day of the barbarian was finally over"