Text: “Yellow River flood, 1938-47”

“In June 1938, Chinese Nationalist armies under the command of Chiang Kai-shek breached the Yellow River’s dikes at Huayuankou in Henan province in a desperate attempt to block a Japanese military advance.[1] For the next nine years, the Yellow River’s waters spread southeast into the Huai River system via its tributaries, inundating vast quantities of land in Henan, Anhui, and Jiangsu provinces. Perhaps the single most environmentally damaging act of warfare in world history, the strategic interdiction threw long-established water control infrastructure into disarray, leading to floods that persisted until the Yellow River was finally returned to its previous course in 1947. Between 1938 and 1947, this disaster killed more than 800,000 people in Henan, Anhui, and Jiangsu and displaced nearly four million.” https://disasterhistory.org/yellow-river-flood-1938-47

This event shows different possible systemic processes:

  • Processes taken by the Chinese Nationalist armies in planning and implementing the flooding of the yellow river
  • Different processes take by different historians in their investigation of this incident
  • Different processes take by different media outlets and writers in their reporting of this incident