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Word Count: 522
The Opium War was a display of how the greed of one country can destroy the very lives of millions of people in another country Britain would be categorized as the greedy nation and China the victim Even though Britain was the main aggressor in this war there were also other nations involved in the degrading of Chinas culture they were France Russia and even America All of these countries took advantage of the addiction Chinas people had to opium by sending chests of opium with about 150 pounds of it in each barrel to china and selling it overpriced In fact Britain sent 2330 chests of opium in 1788 then 4968 in 1810 then increased that to 17257 chests of opium in 1835 which was worth millions of British pounds Opium was first manufactured in China for medicinal purposes in the end of the 15th century It was used to treat many diseases like dysentery and cholera But in the 18th century the Chinese found that Opium was addicting and people started smoking it In 1729 the Chinese imperial government prohibited the sale of opium mixed with tobacco and banned opium-smoking houses The government also made selling opium for smoking a crime and the punishment was either banishment or death Britain however seeing a great demand for opium in China quickly took advantage of the situation While China was doing everything it could to stop the opium trade Britain was doing everything it could do increase it Britain sent gunships and warships to protect the transports carrying the opium The first war started when China confiscated an opium warehouse in Canton in 1839 Britain responded by send a fleet of warships and winning a quick victory in the February of 1840 The conflict was settled with the treaty of Nanking on August 29 1842 and another treaty which was signed on October 8 1843 With both of these treaties signed China
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