Battle of Baitag Bogd


The Battle of Baitag Bogd Mountain (Mongolian: Байтаг богдын тулгарал, romanized: Baitag bogdyn tulgaral) or Beitashan Incident (Chinese: 北塔山事件; pinyin: Běitǎshān shìjiàn; Wade–Giles: Pei-ta-shan shih-chien; alternatively Baitak Bogdo incident)[2] was a border conflict between the Republic of China, the Mongolian People's Republic, and the Soviet Union. The Mongolian People's Republic became involved in a border dispute with the Republic of China, as a Chinese Muslim Hui cavalry regiment was sent by the Chinese government to attack Mongolian and Soviet positions.[3]

Battle of Baitag Bogd
Part of the Ili Rebellion and Chinese Civil War
Baitag Bogd, Xinjiang, China
(on the Chinese–Mongolian border)
45°12′N 90°54′E / 45.2°N 90.9°E / 45.2; 90.9
Result Decisive victory for Mongolian border guard regiment[1]
Commanders and leaders
Republic of China (1912–1949) Chiang Kai-shek
Republic of China (1912–1949) Zhang Zhizhong
Republic of China (1912–1949) Ma Chengxiang
Republic of China (1912–1949) Ma Xizhen
Republic of China (1912–1949) Han Youwen
Republic of China (1912–1949) Osman Batur
Mongolian People's Republic Khorloogiin Choibalsan
Soviet Union Joseph Stalin
Units involved

National Revolutionary Army

1000-2000 10
Baitag Bogd is located in China
Baitag Bogd
Baitag Bogd
Location within China

There had always been a Chinese police force stationed at a Xinjiang police station with Chinese sentry posts before and after 1945.[4][5]

As commander of the First Cavalry Division, Salar Muslim Major General Han Youwen was sent to Baitag Bogd by the Kuomintang military command to reinforce Hui Muslim General Ma Xizhen with a company of troops approximately three months before the fighting broke out.[6] At Baitag Bogd, Han Youwen was in command of all Muslim cavalry defending against Soviet and Mongol forces.[7] Han told American reporter A. Doak Barnett that he believed the border should be about 64 kilometres (40 miles) north of the mountains.[1]

Chinese Muslim and Turkic Kazakh forces working for the Chinese Kuomintang battled Soviet and Mongol troops. In June 1947, the Mongols and the Soviets launched an attack against the Kazakhs, driving them back to the Chinese side. However, fighting continued for another year, with 13 clashes taking place between 5 June 1947 and July 1948.[1]

Mongolia invaded Xinjiang with the intention of assisting Li Rihan, the pro-Soviet Special Commissioner, in gaining control of Xinjiang, over Special Commissioner Us Man (Osman), who was pro-ROC. The Chinese defense ministry spokesman announced that Outer Mongolian soldiers had captured Beitashan and stated that troops[clarification needed] were resisting near Beitashan.[8]

Elite Qinghai Chinese Muslim cavalry were sent by the Chinese Kuomintang to destroy the Mongols and the Soviets in 1947.[9][10]

In early June 1947, Beitashan was retaken by Chinese troops, who continued to fight against Soviet and Mongolian bomber planes; China's Legislative Yuan demanded stronger policies against the Soviet Union in response to the Mongol invasion.[11] The bombs started dropping from Mongol and Soviet planes on 5 June.[12]

Republic of China forces took eight Outer Mongolian troops prisoner, while 30 horses and two Republic of China soldiers died in a bombing.[13] The Republic of China issued a protest against the border attack by the Mongols and Soviets.[14] The Republic of China accused Soviet planes of being involved in the attack.[15] The American ambassador to China branded the Outer Mongolian state as a tool and arm of the Soviet Union.[16] The Soviets were aiming their intervention against the Kazakhs.[17] Chinese Gen. Sung displayed captured Soviet-style Mongolian military headgear and a Soviet map to the American ambassador.[18] The Soviet Tass news agency claimed that Mongolian officers were gruesomely murdered and mutilated.[19] Douglas Mackiernan was sent to Baitag Bogd on 19 June 1947.[20] The Mongolians possessed Soviet weapons that were seized from Soviet troops in battle.[21] The Kazakhs were suffering from a dearth of edible supplies.[22] The entire Baitag Bogd was threatened by Outer Mongol occupation according to Kazakh leader Osman.[23]

Chinese Gen. Ma Xizhen and Kazakh Osman Batur fought against the Mongol troops and airplanes throughout June as fierce fighting erupted.[24] The MPR used a battalion-size force and had Soviet air support in June 1947.[25] The Mongolians repeatedly probed the Chinese lines.[26][27]

See also



  1. ^ a b c d Forbes (1986), p. 215
  2. ^ Howard L. Boorman; Richard C. Howard; Joseph K. H. Cheng (1967). Biographical Dictionary of Republican China. Columbia University Press. pp. 47. ISBN 978-0-231-08957-9.
  3. ^ Chang (1954)
  4. ^ Wu (1967), p. 233
  5. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 563
  6. ^ Wang (1999a), p. 274
  7. ^ Morrison (1949)
  8. ^ "Political Implications in Mongolian Invasion of N. China Province". The Canberra Times. 13 June 1947.
  9. ^ Forbes (1986), p. 214
  10. ^ Dickens, Mark. "The Soviets in Xinjiang 1911–1949". Oxus Communications. Archived from the original on 23 October 2008. Retrieved 18 November 2008.
  11. ^ "Chinese troops recapture Pei-ta-shan". The Canberra Times. 13 June 1947.
  12. ^ Lin (2010), p. 107
  13. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 557
  14. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 558
  15. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 559
  16. ^ Perkins (1947), pp. 560, 564
  17. ^ Perkins (1947), pp. 557, 561
  18. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 562
  19. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 566
  20. ^ Perkins (1947), pp. 566–567
  21. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 567
  22. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 568
  23. ^ Perkins (1947), p. 569
  24. ^ Wang (1999b), p. 87
  25. ^ Liu (2006), p. 380
  26. ^ "China: Encirclement". Time. 6 October 1947. Archived from the original on 3 February 2011.
  27. ^ "A Letter From The Publisher, Oct. 20, 1947". Time. 20 October 1947. Archived from the original on 4 June 2011.


  • Chang, Li (1954). "The Soviet grip on Sinkiang". Foreign Affairs. 32 (3): 491–503. doi:10.2307/20031047. JSTOR 20031047.
  • Forbes, Andrew D. W. (1986). Warlords and Muslims in Chinese Central Asia: A political history of Republican Sinkiang 1911–1949. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-25514-7.
  • Lin, Hsiao-ting (2010). Modern China's Ethnic Frontiers: A Journey to the West. Taylor & Francis. ISBN 978-0-415-58264-3.
  • Liu, Xiaoyuan (2006). Reins of Liberation: An Entangled History of Mongolian Independence, Chinese Territoriality, and Great Power Hegemony, 1911–1950. Stanford University Press. ISBN 0-8047-5426-8.
  • Morrison, Ian (1949). "Some notes on the Kazaks of Sinkiang". Journal of the Royal Central Asian Society. 36 (1): 67–71. doi:10.1080/03068374908731315.
  • Perkins, E. Ralph, ed. (1947). "Unsuccessful attempts to resolve political problems in Sinkiang; extent of Soviet aid and encouragement to rebel groups in Sinkiang; border incident at Baitag Bogd". The Far East: China (PDF). Foreign Relations of the United States, 1947. Vol. VII. Washington, DC: United States Government Printing Office. pp. 546–587. Documents 450–495.
  • Wang, David D. (1999a). Under the Soviet Shadow – The Yining Incident: Ethnic Conflicts and International Rivalry in Xinjiang, 1944–1949. Hong Kong: Chinese University Press. ISBN 962-201-831-9.
  • Wang, David D. (1999b). Clouds over Tianshan: Essays on Social Disturbance in Xinjiang in the 1940s. NIAS Press. ISBN 87-87062-62-3.
  • Wu, Ai-ch'ên (1967). China and the Soviet Union: a Study of Sino-Soviet Relations. Kennikat Press. ISBN 9780804605151.