The Boxer Rebellion

By | June 23, 2024

[June 23, 2024]  In June 1900, Chinese nationalists began the siege on Peking’s diplomatic district (later Beijing).  They were known as the “Boxers” because they believed in calisthenics and martial arts.  Their goal was to drive out all foreign influences in China, and they killed Christian missionaries and diplomats from foreign countries.  The Boxer Rebellion was a formal policy of aggression by the Qing Chinese Dynasty.

The Boxers surrounded the legations.  Small military groups protected diplomats from eight countries with diplomatic ties with China.  The Boxers sought to break and kill all those associated with the various countries.

A group of Marines protected the United States legation.  The Boxers soon learned they didn’t want to attack a wall the United States Marines were defending.  They preferred to attack a wall that the Japanese military was defending.  The United States Marine Corps emphasis on marksmanship made a huge difference.

The siege lasted 55 days.

A rescue force was organized among the various countries, and they sent 20,000 troops to save the legation where the diplomats and their families were trapped inside.  The Boxer Rebellion formally ended on September 7, 1901.  China was forced to pay $330 million in reparations and was not allowed to import firearms for two years into China.

The Boxer Rebellion so weakened the Qing Dynasty, that it ended in 1911, and China became a Republic in 1912.

The lessons from this siege are lost on today’s political establishment.  Force often becomes the only solution when faced with imminent threats.  The Boxers were terrorists, and attempting to rename them as “nationalists” or “freedom fighters” is grossly irresponsible and wrong.

Today, many claim that warfare is outdated or unnecessary in resolving conflict.  These dreamers are ignorant of history and the propensity of mankind to fight.


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Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I provide one article every day. My writings are influenced by great thinkers such as Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Jung, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Jean Piaget, Erich Neumann, and Jordan Peterson, whose insight and brilliance have gotten millions worldwide to think about improving ourselves. Thank you for reading my blog.

16 thoughts on “The Boxer Rebellion

  1. Eddie Gilliam

    Excellent article my friend Doug. I been so busy the May and April with preach and teachers adult Sunday School. Making preparation for my mom 80th bday party next month. I had had time to get on the blog.

  2. McStompie

    My relatives came to America in the early 1800s and fought both in the US Civil War and WWI. It is good for me to read about wars (and rebellions) to learn more about people and how to properly lead.

  3. Chuck USA

    The Boxers were a resistance group, whose primary aim was to evict all the Europeans from China. The movement started in the countryside, as successive poor harvests impoverished ever more Chinese families. The Boxers trained themselves in fighting techniques and even claimed to be in possession of special powers. They vowed to rid China of all Europeans.

    1. Jonnie the Bart

      Yep, and the history here needs to be taught and we should learn from it.

  4. Pen Q

    Thank you Gen. Satterfield for the gentle reminder of this “Boxer Rebellion.” Too many of us Americans are quick to forget or to never learn about such actions taking place across the world. We live in our own bubble. Today, we are trapped in a meta-Marxist world where the crazies are at the gates. The crazies are the trans crowd, those who would push LGTBQ+I onto us and would harm those of us who are Christians.

    1. Eddie Gilliam

      Penn q
      You are so right. Freedom is woth fighting for.

    1. Lana Morrison

      … I think that is one of the points of this article by Gen. S. We should never forget the past, exp. the failures and disasters of the past, else we are bound to repeat those same mistakes unnecessarily. Sadly, that is a human condition, to forget and regret.

      1. Eddie Gilliam

        Excellent comment Lana. You can’t know where you are going unless you know where you came from

  5. Winston

    A future president of the United States, Herbert Hoover, was among the Westerners trapped in Tientsin. About 2,300 troops, marines, and sailors, mostly Russian, faced Boxers and imperial soldiers more than 10 times their number. Hoover, as a civil engineer, was in charge of designing fortifications. Emptying the city’s warehouses, he directed the construction of a two-mile-long barricade made of bales of wool or camel hair and bags filled with peanuts, sugar, and rice.

  6. Harold M. Smith II

    The history of the Boxer Rebellion is well documented and should be studied more than it has been. Tell those stories of those times to get a better understanding of how to conduct both diplomatic and military operations. When we look at wars today, we can learn from the Boxer Rebellion. Thanks Gen. Satterfield for reminding us of this from 124 years ago.

  7. British Citizen

    I had a great uncle who was there. Fantastic story.

    1. Good Dog

      To strengthen the garrison, two bands of civilian volunteers formed. About 75 men, many of whom had previous military experience, were armed with spare rifles. Thirty-one of them were Japanese civilians. They stood watch and fought with the marines and sailors when needed. Another group of 50 men formed an irregular unit to guard the British compound and armed themselves with a motley variety of hunting weapons including an elephant gun. They affixed butcher knives to their weapons and so became the Carving Knife Brigade.

    2. bottom feeder

      I think if many of us look back into our family’s past, we will find that our relatives were very much a part of various wars and conflicts across history.


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