Kwangsi (Guangxi) is a province of southern China incorporating most of the watershed of the Si River, which is formed by the confluence of the Kuei (Gui) and Hsun (Xun) at Wuchow. The province is mountainous with some peaks reaching above 7000' (2100 m), and with numerous river valleys between the mountain ranges. The provincial capital was Kweilin in 1941 and Nanning was the most populous city.
With its damp subtropical climate, agriculture was the chief economic activity. In addition to rice and other cereal grains, sweet potatoes and sugar cane were important crops. However, there were significant if largely undeveloped deposits of tin and manganese.
The province was led by a clique of militarists who adopted some progressive policies but only pledged their loyalty to Chiang when Japan became an obvious threat to all China. Kweilin became a center of radical thinking, including Chinese Communist influence, perhaps because the Kwangsi Clique considered them a useful counterweight to Chiang. Kwangsi regional troops had a high reputation and a relatively low desertion rate.
The area around Nanning was briefly occupied by the Japanese in 1940, but both Nanning and Kweilin became important U.S. air bases later in the war. The province was reoccupied by the Japanese in 1944 as part of Ichi-go.
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