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timer Asked: Oct 25th, 2015

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The factors such as global forces of modernity, indigenous changes, economic and strategic actions of Great Powers led to the evolution of Asian states. India is the country that worked the hardest and the longest among all East and Southeast Asian nationalists to build a democratic state. With the help of Mohandas Gandhi who with his nonviolent demonstrations and civil disobedience forced Brittan to grand self-government to Indians. However, the independence of South Asia in 1947 came at a higher price because it created two different nations, India and Pakistan. Since then this two submerged countries are never been in peace with each other.

 Philippines is the other country which fought for its independence and development of democracy from 1907 – 1946. After the American war against Filipino independence fighters, the US officials send to Philippines by President McKinley sealed a deal with the Filipino elite. This deal allowed the Filipino elite to administer at the local level and the US officials took over the administration of the national level. The period of American colonization initiated the sense of nationalism among Filipinos who came to identify with the nation. Two were the legacies of US in Philippines, education and public health.

The other East Asian countries such as Korea, Indochina, Indonesia, Siam and Burma and Malaya turned against democracy for several reasons. Korea found itself under the Japan colonial rule for more than 35 years. During this period of time Koreans had to protest through several movements against Japanese “cultural rule” and “military rule”. One of the independence movement was the Sin’ganhoe movement which brought together Korean nationalists and Korean Communist party and advocated social revolutions. In 1945 the Communist party created the government of North Korea. Indochina was ruled by France from 1862 – 1893 which assumed that it was spreading “civilization” in Vietnamese territories, and Japanese from 1941–1945. Under this circumstances the symbol of Vietnam’s struggle Ho Chi Minh requested the independence of Indochina at the Versailles peace conference. However, his petition was denied because Indochina was a non-European country. In 1930 Ho Chi Minh formed the Indochinese Communist party since he was inspired most from the Bolshevik Revolution. Tired of Dutch and Chinese ruling Indonesia joined the anti-imperialist organization called Sarekat Islam which was an organization anti-Dutch and anti-Chinese. The leader of Sarekat Islam, Umar Said Tjokroaminoto used a modernist form of Islam were he promoted Indonesian nationalism, socialism and modernization. Siam (Thailand) with its educational improvement, economic growth and increased political sophistication didn’t felt the urge to be part of democracy because it was administered politically by the royal family. Also, Burma and Malaya didn’t joined the democracy because Burma had laid their strong roots in Buddhism which provided the focus for the organizational activity. In 1921 the General Council of Burmese Associations brought nationalism to the village level. In contrast with Burma there were any strong nationalist movement developed in Malaya because it was made of diverse ethnic groups that succeeded in a pluralist society.  

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