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EM 42 


Prepared for 

The United States Armko Forces Institute 



August 19 44 

This pamphlet is one of a scries made available by the War 
DepartmeDt under the series title C. /. Roundtable. As the general 
title indicates, G. I. Roundtable pamphlets provide material 
which information-education officers may use in conducting group 
discussions or forums as part of an off-duty education program. 

The content of this pamphlet has been prepared by the Histori- 
cal Service Board of the American Historical Association. Each 
pamphlet in the series has only one purpose: to provide factual 
informal ion and balanced arguments as a basis for discussion of 
all sides of the question. It is not to be inferred that the Wat- 
Department endorses any one of the particular views presented. 
Specific suggestions for the discussion cr forum leader who 
plans to use this pamphlet will he finmd tin page 57. 

EM 42, G. I. Roundtable: Our Chinese Ally. 


Additional copies should be requisitioned from USAFT, Madi- 
son, Wisconsin, or nearest Overseas Branch. 



















' .tEl in 'i' ■ 


HALF the people in the world live in Asia, and about half 
of that half are Chinese. Hardly any of the other people 
in Asia rule themselves. The Chinese do rule themselves. For 
this reason alone what the Chinese do and what happens tu 
them is important to everybody. 

Many American soldiers in China today are wishing that 
they understood more of what China is all about. They wish 
they had studied some Chinese history at school along with 
Ancient and Modern European history. They wish that they 
had read some hooks about modern China before being 
plunged into the middle of it, for they suddenly realize that 
they do not know the answers to the simplest questions: 
What kind of government does China have*/ What kind of 
religion? What is the Chinese system of writing, which looks 
so different from ours? Why is there so much poverty and 
dirt and disease? 

Or, if they know the answers to such questions, there are 
others in their minds. What is there about the Chinese that 
has enabled them to resist Japan for seven years, almost with 
their bare hands? Is China really a democracy? Who are 
the Chinese Communists? Will there he civil war in China 
after Japan is defeated? Will there he opportunities for for- 
eign trade? Does China have imperialistic ambitions in Asia? 

The answers to these questions are becoming increasingly 
interesting and important. The purpose of this pamphlet is 
to present a background which will help you to interpret 


the problems and events of modern China, about which you 
see so much in the newspapers and magazines. 


To understand a country we need to know a little of it** 
geography. China is not unlike the United States in size and 
even in shape. They lie at about the same distance between 
the north pole and tlie equator, and they have many similari- 
ties in climate and vegetation. 

Siberia stretches to the north of China much as Canada 
lies to the north of the United States, and on the south and 
southwest of China, French Indo-China and Burma corre- 
spond roughly to Mexico. Peiping stands almost exactly on 
latitude 40 while New York is just a little above 40. From 

— "Ming,- _ 


-, v - 



- o 



Reprinted from Owen ond Eleanor Lallimore, Making of Modern China 

Courtesy of W. W. Norton & Company 

Peiping to China's westernmost frontiers is ubuut as far an 
from New York to Oregon. Just as New England reaches tip 
lo ihe east and north of New \ ork, Manchuria extends to 
the northeast of Peiping. 

North and South 

China's climate, like ours, is cold in the north, hot in ihe 
south) and temperate in between, with much the same seasonal 
changes. In Manchuria there are forests like those in our 
Northwest and vast wheat fields like those of the Dakotas. 
In Mongolia and the northwest provinces there are deserts 
that look much like ours in Arizona and New Mexico. Rising 
abruptly from the flat plain of Peiping. the bare yellow hills 
and little groves of trees look much like a landscape in north- 
ern California. The Yangtze Valley is green and fertile like 
the Caroliuas. Farther south, China is as semitropical as 
Florida, while Yunnan has the flowers and fruits and sun- 
shine of southern California. 

Our greatest waterway, the Mississippi, runs from north to 
south, while the Yangtze runs from west to east. The ^ angtze 
is in some ways even more important than the Mississippi. 
Ocean-going steamers can navigate- it for six hundred miles 
to ihe. great inland port of Hankow. 

South China lias more rain than our south and the country 
is therefore greener, with rice as the principal crop. Regular 
rainfall explains the rich growth of trees in the south, where 
much of the eountry in ancient times was covered with forest. 
Now most of the forests have been cut off and the hillsides 
terraced lo grow rice. 

North China is a good deal drier than our north, and the 
landscape is more brown and yellow. Wheat, millet, and corn 
grow in the north, together with all the fruits and vegetables 
that we know in New Knjdand. In most of North China there 

probably never was heavy forest, even in ancient times, partly 
because of scant rainlall and parllv because of the nature "I 
the soil. In Manchuria, however, particularly near the 
Siberian border, there are remnants of great ami noble ancient 

China's Provinces 

I he provinces of China Correspond to the American states. 
There arc twenty-eight provinces, not counting Outer Mon- 
golia ami 'libel. These two, though technically a pari of 
Cnhia, have certain claims to self "government. 

The expression "China Proper," which is quite often heard. 



Courtesy of Institute of Pacific Relations and John Day 

applies lo the eighteen provinces that lie south of ihe Great 
Wall. In these provinces the overwhelming majority of the 

people are Chinese and have been Chinese for many centuries. 

The oilier ten provinces stretch in a wide hand between 

ihe Great Wall and the Siberian frontier. They reach from 
the Pacific in the east lo the huge mountain ranges which in 
the west divide China from India, and include the three 
provinces of Manchuria, the four of Inner Mongolia, two 
carved from ihe eastern side of Tibet, and Sinkiang or Chinese 
I urkestan. Except for Manchuria these provinces are peopled 
largely by non-Chinese races. All of them taken together 
cover an area about as large as the eighteen provinces of China 
Proper, but their population amounts to only about 10 per 
cent of China's total population. The opening of modern com- 
munication by road, rail, and air, and the development of 
mines anil oilier sources of industrial raw materials will soon 
add tremendously to the importance of the marginal provinces 
of China and the great outer territories of Tibet and Outer 

Thirty Centuries of Isolation 

There is one important geographical difference between 
the United Slates and China. Instead of living between two 
vast oceans like the Americans, ihe Chinese have on their 
west a deep barrier of desert and mountain ranges* During 
all hut the last two of China's thirty centuries, however, the 
ocean frontier has been a more complete barrier to foreign 
intercourse than the land frontier. 

The art of sailing was never highly developed by the Chi- 
nese and, although their medieval navigators made a few 
voyages as far as Arabia and Africa, they kept close to land 
and depended on the regularity of the monsoon winds, blow- 
ing for six months from southwest lo northeast and six months 
from northeast to southwest. After Magellan's voyage around 

the world in the 1520*s, European navigator and Americans 
later on began to reach China by sea, but until comparatively 
recent times China's chief intercourse with tlie rest of the 
world was by land across the western borders. 

The land approaches to the Near and Middle Kasl have 
been in use from the most ancient times. About two thousand 
years ago, when the Roman Kmpire reached the height of its 
development, the civilization of China was quite as mature 
and elaborate as that of Rome and, while these two empires 
were separated from eacli other by vast mountain ranges and 
waterless deserts, there was some exchange both of things and 
of ideas. The silks, furs, rhubarb, and cinnamon of China 
reached markets in India, Arabia, and the Roman Empire, 
and to China in return came ivory, tortoise shell, precious 
stones, horses of fine Central Asian breeds, and asbestos. 
Chinese caravans did not travel all the way to Rome, but 
made shorter journeys to oases in the Central Asian desert 
where they exchanged their wares with traders who had 
bought cargoes from other caravans coming from the west. 

Ideas also traveled. Foreign influences in Chinese art can 
be traced from the ages of stone and bronze. Buddhism was 
introduced from India in the first century A.D. and Moham- 
medanism found its way to China from Arabia by way of 
Central Asia. \et all this time probably no lady of ancient 
Rome who wore fine silk from China ever saw a Chinese and 
very few Chinese Buddhists ever saw a native of India. China 
was not entirely cut ofF from the rest of the world, but it was 
remote and detached. 

In the nineteenth century, when steam succeeded sail, the 
nations who were masters of the seas broke down that isola- 
tion. Today, in the stress of war. the sea approaches to China 
have been again cut off, but at the same time new approaches 
have beeu opened by land and air. from Central Asia and 
from the far southwest. In the next chapter of history China 

will be open all around, from the land an well as from the 
sea. The times in which we are now living no longer allow 
China or any other country to he isolated. 


Of every five persons in the world, one is Chinese. What 
are these people like who form so large a portion of the 
human race? Many writers and travelers from China have 
tried to make us believe that the Chinese are just about as dif- 
ferent from us as human beings could be. They have described 
them as backward, exotic, mysterious, even sinister, because 
quaint picturesque people made travel books more interest- 
ing. It is difficult for Westerners to learn the Chinese language 
well, and die fact that few of us have been able to talk freely 
with Chinese or read their literature has helped to make 
them seem difficult to understand. The truth is, however, that 
they are much more like us than we have been led to suppose. 

It is as hard to describe a "typical Chinese" as it is a "typical 
Englishman." Would you choose a London cockney, an Ox- 
ford scholar, a country squire, or a "man about town"? There 
are as many "typical" Chinese as there are "typical" British- 
ers. But one tiling it is safe to say — the exotic and inscrutable 
Chinese depicted in American fiction is no more true to life 
than the la-di-da Englishman with an exaggerated Oxford 
accent so popular in our plays and stories. 

There are a few characteristics, however, which most people 
who know the Chinese will agree are typical. 

What Are Chinese Like? 

The typical Chinese is honest. Foreigners coming to China 
for a short lime sometimes question this and fret about the 
Chinese practice of "squeeze," which seeniB dishonest accord- 

ing to American custom. Tins judgment, however, is based 
on luck of understanding of the Chinese custom. Chinese who 
buy groceries, colled taxes, ami do many other forms of 
business for others, large and small, are by common consent 
entitled to keep for themselves a small percentage of the 
money passing through their hands. This "squeeze" is a rec- 
ognized practice, like brokerage, and iberefore not actually 
dishonest. It is only when the percentage becomes unduly 
large that "squeeze" can be classed as graft. 

Foreigners, on the other hand, are often amazed to discover 
that in China a man's word is really as good as his bond. Many 
large deals are made and contracts let without any written 
document, and it is just as much the custom in China to live 
up to these verbal agreements as it is the custom in America 
to live up to a written contract- — though of course, in China 
as in America, there are men who will wriggle out of any 

Men who laugh at the same things are not apt to misunder- 


stand each other. The typical Chinese has a very keen sense 
<»f humor and one much nearer to the American sense of 
humor than that of many other peoples. 

Chinese, like Americans, reliflh molher-in-law jokes. They 
also have "Scotch" jokes, which arc lold about the people 
of Shansi province. J\or is China lacking in stories which are 
the equivalent of the one ahout the traveling salesman and 
the farmers daughter. JNot only is Chinese humor a good 
deal like American humor, hut Chinese good humorediiess 
is also much like American gooil humorcdness. The jolly. 
perspiring, jostling crowd that gathers at a Chinese country 
fair is not very different from an American crowd on the day 
a circus comes lo town. 

The typical Chinese is in many ways more "civilized" than 
we are. He does not admire directness and frankness ihe way 
we do. In fact, he thinks these characteristics are rather bar- 
barian and uusuhtlc. He is more tactful, his chief concern 
being to make the other fellow feel comfortable, lo give him 
"face," rather than to tell the truth. This comes from thou- 
sands of years of having to get along with each other, often 
in crowded and uncomfortable surroundings. And this is one 
reason why we like the Chinese. They know better than any 
people on earth how to make the awkward foreigner feel com- 
fortable and happy. Foreigners, however, occasionally find 
this tactfulness exaggerated and the emphasis on face irritat- 
ing and incomprehensible. 

The typical Chinese is naturally democratic, and in this 
he is as much like most Americans as he is unlike most Japa- 
nese. In the Japanese language there are whole separate vocab- 
ularies for ordering servants ahout, for keeping your wife 
in her place as a subordinate being, or for showing servility to 
your social superiors. The Chinese are not like this. They 
have ceremonial ways of saying things, hut they use these 
formalities on occasions when it is polite for each man to 

act as if the other were well educated, financially well off, 
and socially important — regardless of whether either of them 
actually is all these things. Bui as soon as the ice is broken, 
Chinese like to be easy and informal with each other, much 
like Americans. Above all, no matter how poor, I ..nil \ dressed, 
or uneducated a Chinese is, you must, when you first speak 
to him, show your respect for him as an independent human 
being. To treat him in any way as socially inferior is bad 
mannered and is regarded as showing that you yourself are 
ill-bred. A further Chinese characteristic is that anybody will 
pick up a casual conversation with a boatman, ricksha puller, 
or mule-cart driver in the same friendly way that Americans 
talk with taxi drivers. They feel that the act of paying money 
for personal services is made more civilized by friendly con- 

Most people think of the Chinese as being more philosoph- 
ical than Americans. This is only partly true. In the old 
China, everything was pretty well settled. The life story of 
the average man was something that had been repeating itself 
for centuries. There was very little reason for supposing that 
the world as a whole was going to gel noticeably better in 
Uie next few years. It was rather obvious that very few- 
poor men got rich quickly, while anyone who looked around 
him could st'e that it was quite common for people who were 
fairly well off to meet sudden disaster in the way of Hood or 
famine or disease. All of this tended to encourage a philo- 
sophical acceptance of fate, and even to make successful 
people feel that their success was due as much to luck as to 

Americans are different in this respect, because we are still 
a young people in a new country. According to our tradition, 
there is always another opportunity around the corner; even 
if what you are doing now turns out to be a failure, you are 
as likely to get another chance as the next man is. Chinese 


philosophicalnesg is changing, however. The things that are 
happening in modern China affect the whole people and go 
far beyond the good luck or bad luck of individuals. The 
horizon of the future promises far more than a mere repeti- 
tion of the past; it is crowded with new prospects and new 
opportunities. Accordingly, it is not at all surprising to find 
that the younger Chinese are much less philosophical and 
fatalistic than their parents, anil more like Americans — rest- 
less, eager, experimental, ready to assert that what you do 
for yourself counts more than what happens to you. 

Where Do the Chinese Live? 

There is no accurate census of the population of China. The 
most generally accepted estimate is 450.000,000,, hut the true 
ii umher may he nearer to 500,000,000 or considerably more 
than three times the population of the United States. This 
enormous population is very unevenly distributed. One-third 
of the area of China Proper contains no less than six- 
sevenths of the people. This area of dense population is in 
th,e east, in the lower valleys of the Yellow and Yangtze rivers 
and the rice-growing areas south of the Yangtze. 

The general practice is that wherever irrigation is possible 
the land is watered and cultivated with minute care in small 
plots which resemble market gardens more than they do an 
American farm. There is also a relationship between cities 
and farming that is quite different from that in America. In 
China, the biggest cities do not stand apart from the most 
important farming regions, but right in the middle of them. 
This is not only because the farms feed the cities. It is ;ilsi> 
because the most important fertilizer is human excrement- 
known throughout the Orient as "night soil." Instead of being 
disposed of through sewage systems, this fertilizer is col- 
lected and sold to the farmers near the. cities. A large Chinese 
city, seen from the air, is surrounded by concentric circles of 


different shades of green. The densest growth and llie darkest 
green is nearest the city, where the fertilizer is cheapest and 
most plentiful. The crop yield per acre diminishes in pro- 
portion to the distance from the source of fertilizer in iJie city. 
More than 80 per cent of the Chinese people are farmers, 
and the typical farmer does not live in a house in the middle 
of his own land. like the American farmer, hut in a village. 
A city in the densely populated part of China is therefore not 
surrounded hy residential suburbs, hut by clusters of villages. 

Two Occupational Groups 

Before the war two occupational groups of Chinese- might 
have been vailed the largest in China as a whole. They are 
still two of the most important groups, but their importance 
relative to each other is changing in a way which typifies the 
emergence of the new China out of the old China. One of 
these types is the peasant, the other is the landlord-gentleman. 

Judged numerically, since four-fifths of the people live by 
farming, the typical or average Chinese is a peasant — just the 
kind of simple, honest. limited, but shrewd and likeable 
peasant we have come to know through The Good Earth and 
other books by Pear! Buck. Comparatively few Chinese farm- 
ers own the land they cultivate, and exorbitant rents and taxes 
have kept their standard of living very low. They are indus- 



trious and self-reliant, however, and go ahead rapidly when 
not too much restricted hy the paternalism and oppression 
which have been traditional in China. 

Both the paternalism and the oppression trace hack to the 
"entry, or landlord class, in the Chinese Empire before 1911. 
These gentry are the Chinese that Lin Yutang had chiefly in 
mind when he wrote My Country and My People, From the 
landlords' families came the old-fashioned scholars whose Ion*!; 
fingernails were the proof that they did no physical work, 
and who combined the grossest corruption (particularly as 
officials appropriating squeeze from state revenues) witli the 
most delicate artistic refinement and the most subtle training 
of the intellect. The power of the landlords rested on the 
fact that grain, accumulated and stored, was until very re- 
cently the Standard of wealth. This made the landlords more 
powerful than the merchants, because the landlords actually 
Controlled agriculture. In fact, merchants were often merely 
the agents of landlords. 

Almost all the officials — the "mandarins of the empire — 
came from the landlord-gentry class. It is true that according 
to the law of the empire the way to appointment was through 
the public examinations, which anybody could take, but since 
the knowledge of literature and philosophy required for these 
examinations demanded years of study, the sons of landlords, 
who did not have to work in the fields and could study at 
home with private tutors, had a big advantage over the sons 
of peasants. Accordingly, while peasants did occasionally rise 
to high official rank, the vast majority of mandarins came 
from families which produced a regular crop of candidates 
for the examinations, generation after generation. 

Modern Chinese 

China's contact with the West in the nineteenth century 
began a new process which has meant the gradual destruction 


of the old way of life. Today many of * .lima"- leaders come 
from families that continue to hold large landed properties 
hut at the same time arc active in trade, industry, and 

The artisan class is being rapidly changed into an industrial 
proletariat, divorced from the villages and the peasant family 
standard. The last to he affected have been the peasants. This 
makes the fate of the peasant decisive for the nation. If he is 
to he held down to the old way of life while the rest of the 
nation changes, then China will hecome a vast Japan, with 
an industrial development high in certain activities, hut 
uneven as a whole, and with a disastrous and widening gap, 
as in Japan, hetween the mechanical progress of the factories 
and the human-labor standard of the farm. Hither the peasant 
must be granted equal rights to progress with the rest of the 
nation or else the low standards of human labor on the farm 
will drag down the wages and standards of factory labor 
and undermine the whole national economy — again, as in 


An old missionary student of China once remarked that 
Chinese history is "remote, monotonous, obscure, and — worst 
of all there is too much of it/' China has the longest con- 
tinuous history of any country in the world — 3,500 years of 
written history. And even 3,500 years ago China's civilization 
was old! This in itself is discouraging to the student, particu- 
larly if we think of history as a haflling catalogue of who begat 
somebody, who succeeded somebody, who slew somebody, 
with only an occasional concubine thrown in for human in- 
terest. Bill taken in another way, Chinese history can be made 
to throw sharp lights and revealing shadows on the story of 
all mankind— from its most primitive beginnings, some of 


winch were ill Asia, to its highest point of development in 
philosophy and religion, literature and art. 

In art and philosophy, many people think, no culture has 
ever surpassed that of China in its great creative periods. In 
material culture, though we think of the roots of our own 
civilization as being almost entirely European, we have also 
received much from Asia -paper, gunpowder, the compass, 
silk, tea, and porcelain. 

We Were Once the "Backward" Ones 

There is nothing like a brief look at Chinese history to 
give one a new and wholesome respect for the Chinese people. 
We are likely today to think of the Chinese as a "backward" 
people who are less civilized than we are, and it is true that 
in what we carelessly speak of as civilization — mechanization 
and the fruits of scientific discovery — they have, in the last 
hundred years, lagged behind the procession and are only 
beginning to catch up. There are reasons for this temporary 
backwardness which we will take up later. It is wholesome to 
realize, however, that this attitude of superiority on the part 
of Western nations has existed for only about a hundred years. 

Until the Opium War of 1840*42 the European merchants 
and voyagers who reached the distant land of China had 
looked upon the Chinese with a good deal of awe as a people 
of superior culture. They still had much the same attitude 
as Marco Polo, who, in the thirteenth century,' had told the 
people of Italy that China under the rule of the Mongols had 
a much more centralized and efficient system of government 
than European countries had. Coming from the hanking and 
trading city of Venice, he admired the wide use of paper 
money in China. To a Europe' which had not yet begun to 
use coal he also described how the Chinese mined and burned 
a kind of stone which was much superior to wood as fuel. 












NEOLITHIC AGE. Agricultural communities in 
Yellow River valley cultivated loess soil with 



stone tools. Domesticated dog and pig. 


Hunting and ashing tribes in Yangtse 







BRONZE AGE. Primitive Yellow River city states. 
Probable use ol irrigation. Shang-inscribed bones 



give base line of history. Sheep and goats domesti- 
cated. Writing. Beautiful bronze castings. Potter's 



wheel. Stone carving. Silk culture and weaving. 


Trojan War 

Wheeled vehicles. 




1 100 




ANCIENT FEUDALISM. Expansion from Yellow 
River to Yangtse valley. "City and country" cells. 




Increased irrigation. Eunuchs. Horse-drawn war 
chariots. 841 b.c earliest authenticated date. 



Carthage founded 





Hebrew prophets 
Creek lyric poets 



IRON AGE. Round coins. Magnetism known. 
CLASSICAL PERIOD. Confucius, Lao-tze. 



Persian Wars 







Punic Wart 

Bronze mirrors. 



Carthage and Corinth destroyed 


Palace architecture. Trade through Central Asia 
with Roman Empire. Ink. 



Joliut Caesar 


Birth of Christ 
Jerusalem destroyed 

Marcus Aurclius 


Roman Empire divided 

Odoacer lakci Rome 


Mohammed'* Hegira 

Moslems stopped at Tours 



Holy Roman Empire 


Magna Carta 


Printing in Europe 
Turks take Constantinople 

Religious War* 

an 1 





First World War 

Russian Revolution 

Second World War 





l/SUNG \ 










First Buddhist Influences. 


Political disunity hut cultural progress and spread. 

Buddhism Nourishing. Use of coal. 
Trade with Judo-Chun and Siam. 

Large-scale unification. Grand Canal. 
ZENITH OF CULTURE. Chinese culture reaches 

Japan. Turk and Tungus alliances, 
.evivat of Confucianism weakens power of 
Buddhist monasteries. Mohammedanism. Cotton 
from India. Porcelain. First printed l>ook. 
Slate examinations organized. Rise of Khitan. 
Fool binding. Poetry, painting, sculpture. 
Wang An-shih. 

Classical Renaissance. Paper money. 
Rise of Jurchid. Compass. 
Navigation and mathematics. 
MONGOL ACE. Jenghis Khan. Marco Polo. Franciscans 

Operatic theater. Novels. 


Yung Lo builds Peking. 

Period of restoration and stagnation. 

Portuguese traders arrive. 

Clash with Japan over Korea. 


Critical scholarship. 

Canton open to Western trade. 

Treaties with Western powers. Snread o! 

Western culture. Taipmg Rebellion. 

Boxer Rebellion. 1911 Revolution. Nationalist 

Revolution. Unification under Chiang Kai-shek. 

Japanese invasion and World War II. 

China in fact had a civilization similar to that of Europe 
before the Industrial Revolution, and superior to it in many 
ways. The agriculture of China was more advanced and pro- 
ductive than thai of Europe because of the great use of irri- 
gation; and the wide network of canals that supplied water 
for irrigation also provided cheap transport. The Chinese 
had reached a high level of technique and art in the making 
of such tilings as porcelain and silk, and in general the guild 
craftsmen of their cities were at least equal to those of the 
cities of pre-industrial Europe. 

Moreover the Chinese had gone a good deal further than 
Europeans in the use of writing as a vehicle of civilization 
and government, and everything which that means. They had 
extensive statistics of government and finance at a time when 
Europe had practically none. They used written orders and 
regulations when Europe was still dependent on government 
by word of mouth. 

The historical chart shows what was happening in China 
at the time of well-known events in the Western world. Note 
that some of the highest points in Chinese civilization came 
during the darkest days in Europe. The central column of 
the chart shows a succession of Chinese dynasties. A dynasty 
is the reign of one ruling family, and some families remained 
in power for several hundred years before they were over- 
thrown either by another Chinese family or by barbarians 
from the north. 

In the Beginning 

The Chinese people did not come to China from somewhere 
else as did our own early settlers but are thought to be the 
direct descendants of the prehistoric cave men who lived in 
North China hundreds of thousands of years ago. Chinese 
civilization as we know it first developed along the great 
bend of the Yellow River, where the earth was soft and easily 


worked by the crude tools of China's Stone Age men who 
lived before 3000 B.C. 

From the Yellow River the Chinese spread north, east, and 
south, sometimes absorbing aboriginal tribes, until by the 
time of Confucius (500 B.C. I they occupied most of the coun- 
try between the Yangtze River and the Great Wall, and had 
developed from primitive Stone Age men to men who could 
domesticate animals, irrigate land, make beautiful bronze 
weapons and utensils, build walled cities, and produce great 
philosophers like Confucius. 

At the time of Confucius, China consisted of many small 
states ruled by feudal lords. While they were loosely feder- 
ated under an emperor it was not until 221 B.C.. when the last 
of China's feudal kingdoms fell, that China was united as a 
single empire. The imperial form of government lasted from 
221 B.C. to 1911 A.I). 

China's first emperor, Sbih Huang Ti, is known as the 
builder of the Great Wall, which runs from the sea westward 
into the deserts of Central Asia — a distance about as great as 
from New York City to the Rockies. The purpose of this 
stupendous job of engineering was to protect the settled Chi- 
nese people from the raids of barbarian nomads who lived 
beyond it. Much of this great walled frontier is still standing 


How Dynasties Rose and Fell 

Through the 2,000 years of China's empire, students can 
trace a sort of pattern of the rise and fall of dynasties. A 
dynasty would come into power after a period of war and 
famine had reduced the population to the point where there 
was enough land and food to go around. There would he pros- 
perity, a civilized, sophisticated, and lavish court, families of 
great wealth and culture scattered over the country, and a 
flowering of art, literature, and philosophy. Then gradually 
the population would increase and the farms he divided, the 
landlords would refuse to pay taxes, thus weakening the 
government, and at the same time would collect more and 
more rent from the peasants. There would be savage peasant 
rebellions. Out of these rebellions would arise warriors and 
adventurers who enlisted the outlawed peasants, seized power 
by the sword, and overthrew tlie dynasty. 

Once in power, the successful war lord would need to bring 
into his service scholar* who understood administration and 
the keeping of records. These scholars were largely from the 
landlord class, the only class with leisure to acquire an edu- 
cation. While they built a government service for the new 
dynasty they founded landed estates for themselves and their 
heirs. As the power of the landlords grew the state of the 
peasants worsened and the same things would happen all over 

Several times dynasties were founded by nomad warriors 
from beyond the Great Wall. The last dynasty of the empire 
was founded by Manchus from Manchuria, who ruled in China 
from 16-14 until the empire fell in 1911. It is said that China 
has always absorbed her conquerors. Until the Japanese in- 
vasion her conquerors have been barbarians who looked up 
to the higher civilization of China and eagerly adopted it. The 
armored cars and tanks of a more mechanized civilization are 
not so readily digested. 


Of What Use Today Is an Old Civilization? 

One may ask, "What good does it do the Chinese to have 
such an old civilization?" There is a very real advantage, 
which visitors to China often sense when they cannot explain 
it. The values of culture and of being civilized have existed 
in China so long that they have soaked right through the 
whole people. Even a poor Chinese with no education is likely 
to have the instincts and hearing of an educated man. He 
sets great store by such things as personal dignity, self-respect, 
and respect for others. Even if he knows the history of his 
country and his native region only by legend anil folklore in- 
stead of reading, still he knows it — usually a surprising 
amount of it. And he has a tremendous hunger and aptitude 
for education, which is one of the reasons why the future 
progress of China, once it is freed from foreign aggression, is 
likely to be amazingly rapid. 


Japan was not the first modern and mechanized power to 
menace the freedom of China. It was the rapid encroachment 
of the Western powers after the British defeated China in the 
Opium War in 1842 which caused China to fall suddenly 
from the proud position of the advanced and enlightened 
Cathay of earlier centuries to the weak and half-conquered 
China of the past hundred years. 

As a result of the great voyages which had opened a way 
across the Atlantic, a way around the Cape of Good Hope, 
and a way around Cape Horn, Western traders and mission- 
aries had begun to reach the coast of China by sea even before 
the end of the seventeenth century. Portuguese, Spanish, and 
Dutch merchants came in search of commodities that had a 
high value of rarity and luxury on the European market. 
Toward the end of the eighteenth century the English be- 


came the most numerous and active among the foreigners 
along the coast of Chinu. ami their trade was practically 
monopolized by the British East India Company. 

Superior China 

East India ships came to China primarily for cargoes of 
silk, tea, and porcelain. The first (lowered wallpaper used in 
Europe also came from China. In return the Chinese bought 
such luxury goods as clocks and watches. American clipper 
ships brought furs, silver dollars from Mexico, and ginseng 
root which the Chinese valued as medicine. But on the whole 
the Chinese, who considered their civilization infinitely supe- 
rior to that of the West, had much more interest in Belling 
to the Westerners than in buying from them, and therefore 
all trade was carried on according to terms dictated by China. 
When the Chinese emperor replied to George Ill's request 
for more trade by refusing to open any more ports and mak- 
ing it plain thai trade at Canton could be continued only at 
his pleasure, the reply was accepted only because there was 
nothing George III could do about it. 

The force which reversed the relationship between China 
and the West was the Industrial Revolution in Europe. The 
Industrial Revolution had a double effect. First, the use of 
machinery and the development of modern science improved 
the weapons of war to such an extent that England had an 
overwhelming superiority in arms. Second. British merchants 
had far more manufactured goods to sell than could be sold 
in England and so they had no patience with any restrictions 
put on trade by either their own or the Chinese government. 
They first smashed the monopoly of the East India Company 
and then demanded of China that she open her ports to for- 
eign trade and accept for all merchants the principle of free 
opportunity to trade in any commodities. 


Britain chiefly wanted a market in China for her textiles, 
and all ships sailing from Kngland had to carry a quota of 
cotton cloth, even though the market for it in China was as yet 
so undeveloped that mtirh of it had to he sold at a loss. How- 
ever, the British commodity most unwelcome to the Chinese 
government was opium from India. 

The Opium War and the Superior West 

The new British drive for free trade came to a crisis when 
a zealous Chinese official seized and burned a large stock of 
British-owned opium. This started the Opium War which 
ended in the Treaty of Nanking in 1842. This treaty, and one 
which followed establishing the principle that any privilege 
won by any foreign country would be equally enjoyed by all 
other foreign countries, laid the foundation for a series of 
wars and diplomatic dealings which completely changed the 
international status of China. 

Defeated in the Opium War, China was forced to recognize 
the Western nations as equals and to open her markets to 
Western merchants. From then on other nations more and 
more refused to treat the Chinese as equals, ami China became 
shackled by what are known as the "unequal treaties." When- 
ever the Chinese were defeated they not only suffered the 
normal consequences of defeat but bad to pay an indemnity 
to cover the expenses of whatever country defeated them. 
Partly in order to insure the collection of these indemnities 
a customs service was created, supervised by representatives 
of foreign powers, to collect dues on foreign trade* Duties 
were collected at the low rate of 5 per cent, which opened 
the way to the penetration of China by foreign commodities 
and at the same time prevented the Chinese from developing 
industries of their own under the protection of a tariff framed 
in their national interest. 


In a number of cities international settlements, or foreign 
concessions, were established over which foreign powers had 
complete control, and a Chinese having a civil suit against a 
foreigner had to have it judged under foreign law. These 
cities were known as "treaty ports," and the system by which 
Americans and other foreigners were exempt from Chinese 
law was called "extraterritoriality." 

Thus China, instead of being conquered and made a colony 
by one nation, became virtually the colony of all nations 
which had merchant ships to send to China and gunboats to 
accompany them. More treaties were signed as the nineteenth 
century progressed, all increasing foreign control. Then in 
1894 came the calamitous war with Japan. Its consequences 
were even worse than a defeat by Britain or France might 
have been, for it meant that Japan now claimed a place in 
the ring of despoilers closing in on China — and Japan was in 
closer striking distance of China than any other naval power. 
This intensified the competition for strategic bases and eco- 
nomic spheres of influence in China to the point where Giina 
was threatened with actual dismemberment. 

The Open Door Held China Together 

This crisis was deferred by the policy of the Open Door, 
proposed by American Secretary of State Hay in 1899 in a 
series of notes to the treaty powers. The Open Door did not 
propose to stop imperialistic demands on China. It simply 
registered a claim that, whatever any other country took in 
China, it must leave an Open Door for American trade and 
enterprise. Even though it was an expression of American 
self-interest, the practical effect of this arrangement was to 
halt the process of cutting China up into colonial possessions. 
There developed instead a uniform procedure of presenting 
joint international demands to the Chinese government. This 


also restrained Japan from acquiring exclusive rights, privi- 
leges, and territorial control. 


Since the first years of this century China has been in the 
throes of a revolution in which it has been struggling for two 
things: to free itself from foreign control and to build a 
strong and modern nation with a government representing the 
people. Suji Yat-sen, the great leader of die revolution, died 
in 1925, but the movement for democracy in China is still far 
from its goal and his principles are the tilings for which the 
Chinese people are fighting today. 

The chief result of the impact of the West on China had 
been to weaken her and to postpone the day when she eould 
form a strong new government to replace the tottering Manchu 
Dynasty. In other ways, however, the West helped to bring 
about the Chinese Revolution. Chinese who went abroad to 
study or who came in contact with Western education in 
China soon realized that China must develop a strong govern- 
ment along Western lines if it was to take its place in the 
modern world. Also, the growth of modern trade and industry 
in the treaty ports developed an entirely new class in China, 
a middle class of merchants, manufacturers, and bankers who 
did business with the West and shared many of its ideas. This 
class provided much of the leadership and the money for a 
nationalist movement which came to be organized under the 
name of the National People's Party, or, in Chinese, the 

The political genius of the revolution was Sun Yat-sen, a 
physician who had studied in Hawaii and Hongkong. He built 
a politically disciplined revolutionary party, worked out a 
theory of the aims of the Chinese Revolution, and developed 
the methods by which to achieve them. In a series of lectures 


lo thousands of his followers at Canton he described these 
aims as the "Three Principles of the People," which are usu- 
ally translated as "Nationalism, Democracy, and the People's 

The First Revolution Got Rid of the Manchus 

The first revolution, in 1911, aimed to rid the country of 
the Manchus and to set up a republic modeled on the govern- 
ments of the United States and Great Britain. It was com- 
paratively simple to overthrow the Manchu Dynasty. It fell 
because it was loo rotten to stand. But the long task of form- 
ing a strong and representative government was not go simple 
and has not yet been completed. 

For the first fifteen years after 1911 little apparent progress 
was made. This was the period of the war lords: politicians 
with private armies who fought, shadow-boxed, and bargained 
among themselves and with or against the central government. 
Various foreign governments had dealings witli one war lord 
or another, in search of someone who could be set up as the 
internationally recognized dictator of China, able to mortgage 
China's minerals and other resources in return for loans. 
Japan, on the other hand, pursued a calculated policy of 
always supporting more than one war lord, since japan did 
not want a unified dictatorship any more than any other form 
of unity in China. 

During these years the Nationalists, under Sun Yat-sen, 
were slowly gaining popular support, but realized that they 
needed help from abroad in order to overthrow the war lords 
and set up a strong central government. After appealing in 
vain to the United States, Great Britain, and Japan, they 
turned to Soviet Russia. Sun Yat-sen invited Russian techni- 
cal and political advisers to come to Canton to help to re- 
organize the Kuomintang and build up a revolutionary army. 
The Chinese Communist Party, which had lieen organized in 


1921, was admitted into partnership with the Kuomintang and 
helped to organize factory workers and peasants so that they 
could assist in the revolution. 

The Second Revolution United China 

In 1926 die army of the Nationalists, under the leadership 
of a young general, Chiang Kai-shek, began to inarch north 
from Canton to unify all China. Ahead of them went an army 
of propagandists who roused the people against the war lords 
and in support of the Nationalist ideals. As a result the war 
lord armies, which were not hound together by either patriot- 
ism or nationalism, were overwhelmed. 

The rapid advance of the Northern Expedition slowed after 
Hankow, Nanking, and Shanghai were occupied. As they ad- 
vanced up the railway from Nanking toward Tientsin and 
Peking the Japanese military forces in the province of Shan- 
tung obstructed them, provoking an armed clash. 

In North China there loomed the threat of war with Japan. 
There was also the threat of intervention by Britain and 
America, which did not wish to see a new government in 
China under Communist or Russian influence. In these cir- 
cumstances Chiang Kai-shek felt that he could not afford to 
alienate either Britain and America or his own landlord and 
growing capitalist class who had become alarmed by the grow- 
ing left wing of the Kuomintang — the Communists, students, 
and intellectuals who wanted to base their power on the 
peasants and workers of China. He therefore decided to break 
with Russia and to destroy the Chinese Communists. The 
Russian advisers fled, many thousands of Communists were 
killed, and the right wing of the Kuomintang, backed by the 
army, set up a government in Nanking. Thus, in 1928, the 
present Nationalist government of China was founded and 
was immediately recognized by most of the great powers. 



The struggle between the Chinese Communists and the gov- 
ernment lasted from 1928 to 1937, when a united front was 
formed to faee the growing menace of Japan. 

Preparing for the Storm 

The Nanking government was a one-party government, eon- 
trolled by the Kuornintang or Nationalist Party. Among its 


leaders one man stood out as the supreme representative of 
the China of this generation. That man was Chiang Kai-shek, 
who proved to he not only a soldier but a statesman who could 
balance all the different forces in both the old China and the 
new China, not merely by playing them off against each other, 
but by welding them into something new. 

When Chiang Kai-shek came into power in 1928 he knew 
that sooner or later be would have to light Japan, and all he 
asked was time to build up an army and to strengthen the 
nation. He was given only three years before Japan invaded 
Manchuria in 1931, and only nine years before the storm 
broke in full fury in the summer of 1937. 

Japan's imperialist ambitions had long been clear to China. 
During the first World War Japan had presented to China her 
fc "Twenty-one Demands" which, if granted, would have given 
Japan a stranglehold over China. While the intervention of 
America and Britain temporarily saved the situation, China 
never forgot this illustration of Japaifs real intentions. Dur- 
ing the next ten years, as we have seen, Japan did all she 
could to interfere with the Nationalist movement. In Japan 
the power of the militarists was growing and the writings 
and public utterances of their leaders were making it increas- 
ingly clear that they fanatically believed in their god-given 
mission to rule the world, the first step to which was the 
conquest of China. 

After 1928 the Nationalist government had two main lines 
of policy which it pushed with all possible speed: to 
strengthen and modernize the country and to bring it all 
under the administrative control of the central government. 
Great advances were made in education, medicine and public 
health, in banking, mining and engineering, in communica- 
tions, and in industry. Rapid extension of road and rail com- 
munications met both strategic and economic needs. The 
primary railway systems of China ran parallel with the coast 






and had been built with foreign loans and under foreign 
control in order to increase the trade of tlie treaty ports in 
the interests of foreign enterprise. The government now began 
to build lines directly opening up the hinterland, extending 
its hold over the country as a whole, and increasing trade 
without increasing foreign control. 

Beyond and between the railways the network of motor 
roads was even more rapidly expanded; and still deeper in 
the interior air lines began to reach points to which even the 
motor roads had not yet penetrated. In far inland China 
today there are actually millions of people who have seen 
airplanes but never an automobile, and many more who have- 
seen cars and trucks but never a railway train. When the 
remotest regions, where life has hardly changed for centuries, 
are reached first by the most advanced technological develop- 
ments, there are startling effects. Vast areas in China will 
move directly into the age of electric power, skipping almost 
entirely the age of steam power. 

In the same period China's industry expanded with un- 
precedented rapidity. In all kinds of enterprises which had 
once been carried on only under foreign management, the 
Chinese began to show more and more competence. Quanti- 
tatively, in numbers of factories or total of horsepower, the 
achievements of Chinese industry by 1937 were so small that 
they would hardly show on a comparative world chart. 
Qualitatively, they were as important as yeast is to bread. 
Every power-driven machine in China does two things: it 
makes things and it teaches people. Every factory is a tech- 
nical training school. The transformation of China's economy 
is at flash point. As in early Yankee New England when the 
machine was just coming into its own, the transition from 
journeyman-worker to inventor and skilled engineer can be 
made in an astonishingly short time. 

The new government rapidly extended its authority over 


North China, but when Manchuria joined the national gov- 
ernment it was a political event of the first importance, for 
not only had Manchuria long been known for its political 
separatism, but Japan had special interests there in the way 
of railway and mining concessions. 

Manchuria was not a backward region but one of China's 
most important frontiers of progress. Chang Tso-lin, the old 
war lord of Manchuria, had been succeeded by his son Chang 
Hsueh-liang, the "Young Marshal," who had been notified 
by the Japanese in an unmistakably menacing way that it 
would not he a good thing for Manchuria to participate in 
the unification of China by having anything to do with the 
new government at Nanking. In spite of this warning, Chang 
Hsueh-liang identified Manchuria with the rest of the nation 
of China by hoisting the Nationalist flag in 1929. Japan 
struck two years later. 


The War Began in Manchuria 

The second World AX'ar began with Japan's aggression in 
China. Many people think of the war between China ami 
Japan as starting after the Marco Polo Bridge incident in 
1937. The fact is that the war really began in 1931 when an 
explosion on the South Manchurian Railway near Mukden 
touched off a well-planned invasion of Manchuria. 

Japan struck in 1931 because China was becoming united. 
China's new armies, however, were neitber well enough 
trained nor well enough equipped to resist Japan. China 
therefore appealed to the League of Nations, hoping that 
this would force other countries to share in the crisis. 

Instead of taking prompt action to halt Japanese aggression 
in Manchuria the League sent out the Lytlon Commission to 
investigate what had happened. The commission reported 
that Japan waft guilty of deliberate aggression, but even then 
the League took no action which would effectively restrain 
her. In tbe meantime Japan had firmly established in Man- 
churia a puppet state which it called "Manchukuo." 

The "Manchurian Incident" proved that in a real crisis the 
League of Nations was useless. The consequences have been 
recited again and again. Hitler rose to power in Germany 
and was immediately offered bank accounts all over the world. 
Italy went on an old-fashioned slave-catching expedition in 
Ethiopia. Fascism was established in Spain wilb the overt 
aid of Germany and Italy. The ultimate repudiation of 
common decency was the betrayal of Czechoslovakia at 

Many Americans were inclined to I dink that perhaps 
China's loss of Manchuria wasn't so very serious. There was, 
a smug assumption that tbe seizure of Manchuria would 


"satisfy" the Japanese for a long time, because they would 
have lo "digest" 360.000 square miles of territory with a great 
variety of undeveloped resources. Actually the Japanese did 
not pause or hesitate. The I^eague of Nations had abandoned 
Manchuria to them. Following up this advantage they re- 
lentlessly continued their pressure against China. 

Between 1931 and 1936 the Japanese edged their way into 
North China. In 1933 they annexed the province of Jehol 
to Manchukuo. They then demanded that the Chinese gov- 
ernment set up a "political council" in North China, headed 
by men acceptable to Japan, and they encouraged local mili- 
tarists to accept Japanese patronage and to detach their 
military forces from allegiance lo the national government. 

The Sian Kidnaping 

Though the Japanese appeared almost to have succeeded 
in severing North China from the rest of China, in that part 
of the country not yet reached by the Japanese the will to 
resist was hardening. The feeling that the time was coming 
for a great national effort spread back again into North 
China, heartening people with the knowledge that they did 
not stand alone. 

This feeling crystallized in December 1936, when Generalis- 
simo Chiang Kai-shek was kidnaped at Sian. In 1935 the 
Chinese Communists had hern dislodged from tlmir position 
south of the Yangtze. Withdrawing in a spectacular retreat 
known as the "Long March." they had taken up a new posi- 
tion in northern Shcnsi, where they occupied a stretch of 
territory that was economically very poor but strategically 
very important. 

The Communist forces were hemmed in by troops of the 
national government, among them many thousands who had 
been withdrawn from Manchuria in 1931, under the com- 


maud of the Young Marshal, Chang Hsueh-iiang. Since 1934 
an important part of the Communist propaganda had heen 
the demand for a truce between the Communists and the 
national government and a united front against the Japanese. 
The Young Marshal and his troops had been impressed by 
their arguments, and when Chiang Kai-shek Hew to Sian to 
see why his Manchurian troops weren't lighting the Com- 
munists, they held him under arrest for nearly two weeks 
while they attempted to convince him that the time had come 
to resist the Japanese. 

Instead of causing further civil war, the incident resulted 
in the forming of a united front against Japan and a tre- 
mendous rallying to the leadership of Chiang Kai-shek. The 
Japanese began to sense a new toughness in the Chinese 
people and knew that they would either have to back down 
or shoot to kill. 

The "China Incident" 

Six months after the Sian kidnaping, on July 7, 1937, at 
the Marco Polo Bridge outside Peiping, the Japanese made 
a deliberate attempt at a Putsch as a last alternative to a full- 
scale invasion of China. They had taken great care to get 
everything fixed up in advance, and with respect to many of 
the higher-up Chinese they had good reason to believe that 
things would stay fixed. 

An unexpected factor, however, saved North China long 
enough to make the lighting spread beyond the proportions 
of a "local incident" and become a war of national survival 
clearly understood by the whole Chinese people. This un- 
expected factor was the Chinese common soldier- the man 
most underestimated, and often despised, by foreign observers. 
Even though a number of officers in the right positions had 
been "fixed" by the Japanese the common soldiers refused 


to be sold out. In regiment after regiment, division after 
division, the spirit of resistance flared up among the rank 
and file; men refused to he marched off to places where they 
could not fight. Once Chinese resistance had begun it spread 
like wildfire, and while too lacking in organization to save 
North China, it delayed the Japanese timetable first by hours, 
then by days, and then by weeks. 

Altbough Japan intended to restrict the war to North 
China, the Japanese in Shanghai felt the loss of prestige from 
the failure of their Putsch in the north. Their navy, largely 
as a gesture of bravado, tried to take Shanghai, with massed 
cruisers and destroyers moored alongside the city and pouring 
a terrible gunfire into it. 

Once more Chinese resistance amazed the world. In the 
attempt to salvage its prestige the Japanese navy lost thou- 
sands of men and was finally forced to let the army land 
troops. These compelled the Chinese to withdraw by threat- 
ening to outflank and encircle them. The fighting then moved 
toward Nanking, the capital. 

Out in ill'* open country, the Japanese could fully exploit 
their superiority in planes, artillery, and motorized equip- 
ment. They pressed on so hard that it was impossible for 
the Chinese to make a major stand between Shanghai and 
Nanking or at the city itself. They had to abandon their 
capital. The Japanese ran amuck when they entered it. 
While the city burned, looting, raping, and the murder of 
military prisoners and civilians- went on for weeks. Not only 
did Japanese officers fail to control their troops; many of 
them did not want to, and joined in the atrocities themselves. 

So terrible were the horrors of Nanking that their military 
significance has been overlooked. When the Japanese reached 
Nanking, they had such an advantage that they probably 
could have pushed on, split up and encircled most of the 
best divisions of the Chinese army, and won a victory that 


would really have crippled China and made a short war 
possible. The opportunity they lost at Nanking has never 
1m-i-,i within their reach again. 

Trading Space for Time 

After the bloody interlude of Nanking, the Japanese col- 
umns began to batter their way ahead again. It was now too 
late to entrap and annihilate the Chinese armies, which were 
engaged in delaying actions on a vast scale. Their strategy 
was the same defense in depth which the Russians, with more 
and better equipment, later used even more effectively against 
the Germans. The Chinese tactics were to give way at the 
point of heaviest Japanese pressure, but to close in on the 
flanks and communications of the Japanese columns or 
wedges. This was the strategy and tactics which Chiang 
Kai-shek called "trading space for time." Its greatest success 
was in the famous battle of Taierhchwang, when a Japanese 
mechanized spearhead, trying to thrust too daringly along 
the Lunghai Railway from the coastal railway system to the 
I'eiping-IIankow line, was cut off and almost annihilated by 
the Chinese. 

In spite of the skill with which the Chinese forced the 
Japanese to light their kind of war, the Japanese had one 
advantage. They had a navy, and the Yangtze River is so 
deep and wide that ocea?i-going vessels and large cruisers can 
steam all the way up to Hankow, in the heart of the country. 
It was as if America, with no navy, were fighting an invader 
whose navy could steam all the way up the Mississippi to 
Si. Louis. 

Although the Chinese front was never shattered, its Hank 
was repeatedly turned along the Yangtze, and toward the end 
of 1938 the Japanese navy enabled the land forces to reach 
Hankow and simultaneously to take the great city of Canton 


on the roast. These losses deprived the Chinese of both ends 
of the Strategically important Canton-Hankow railway; but 
they have never lost control of the inland section of the line. 

Magnetic Warfare and Guerilla Fighting 

A new phase of the war began after the fall of Hankow 
and Canton at the end of 1938, and lasted until December 7, 
1941, when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. Viith the 
Japanese navy in control of the coast and the Yangtze, the 
Chinese could receive no more supplies by ship and rail ex- 
cept for a very small trickle through French Indo-China which 
stopped entirely when the Japanese moved into that area in 
1940. The Chinese were now limited to what they could get 
over the truck road from Burma, which they had in the mean- 
time built for themselves, and over the 2.000 mile truck route 
from the Soviet Union. 

During these three years the Chinese fought a new kind of 
delaying war. You can draw on the map an almost straight 
line from Peiping through Hankow to Canton, and this is all 
that is needed for a rough diagram of the Japanese front in 
China. Wherever the Japanese are to be found west of this 
line, they are virtually besieged, as they are in the moun- 
tainous province of Shansi, and at Iehaiig on the \angtze. 
China east of this line contained, in 1937, almost the whole 
of China's industrial production; almost the entire railway 
system; most of the well-developed coal mines; tbe richest 
agricultural production; and more than half the total popula- 
tion. West of this line the Chinese have today less than 10 
per cent of China's former industrial production; some frag- 
ments of railway; mining resources that have largely been 
developed since the war began; and a system of motor roads 
that is badly hampered by the difficulty of getting fuel, new 
trucks, and spare parts. 


The kind of war that could he fought up to Pearl Harbor, 
and to a large extent since Pearl Harbor, was dictated by this 
division of China. West of the line from Peiping to Canton 
through Hankow begins the hilly country of China, in con- 
trast to the great open plains of the lower Yellow River and 
Yangtze Valley to the east. It is in the open country that the 
Japanese get the most advantage out of their motorized equip- 
ment and artillery. With command of the air, they are able 
to detect any Chinese attempt to concentrate a large striking 
force. In the more hilly and broken country, the Chinese 
are able to hide their movements and concentrations from 
Japanese observation planes. 

This is the explanation of what Chiang Kai-shek calls 
"magnetic warfare." Whenever the Japanese attempt a major 
thrust the Chinese retreat, without losing contact, until they 
have drawn the Japanese column far from its starting point. 
By scattering their defense, the Chinese force the Japanese 
to weaken their main column by detaching units from it. As 
the Chinese are very weak in artillery, the ideal moment for 
tli em to strike is when they have drawn the Japanese into 
country where their artillery cannot maneuver advanta- 
geously. The Chinese then bring their trench mortars into 
action; with these and with machine guns and rifles and 
finally with hand grenades and bayonets, they close in on the 
Japanese, preventing reinforcement from the rear and at the 
same lime destroying the head of the column. It was in this 
way that the Chinese won tbe battles of Changsha in 1°41 
and 1942, and the Ichang campaign of I'M."!. 

While the Chinese have been able to fight the Japanese to 
a standstill by lliese methods, they fight under one terrible 
disadvantage. They cannot convert a victory into a large-scale 
counteroffensive of their own, because once tlicy come out 
to the open country it is the Japanese who have the advantage 
in mobility, concentration, and overwhelming superiority of 


fire power. East of the great dividing line, therefore, the 
Chinese resort to guerilla warfare. The region of guerilla 
warfare is not really "Occupied China" as it is often called. 


but "Penetrated China." The Japanese occupy many points, 
and keep communications open between these points. The 
bulk of the country and the mass of the population are sub- 
ject to vindictive Japanese raids, but are not under Japanese 


control ami are able to organize themselves. The guerillas 
have greatly hampered Japanese exploitation of China's re- 
sources* hut they have not been able to win hack wide terri- 
tory or strategic points. Final Japanese defeat awaits tin* 
strengthening of China's regular armies. 

Some of the Chinese guerillas are irregular troops who 
form an extension, behind the Japanese lines, of China's 
regular forces. Some guerilla regions of Penetrated China 
remit taxes to the national government at Chungking. Some 
guerillas are Communists. Others, without being Communists, 
are on friendly terms with the Communists and borrow ex- 
perts from them to train their troops and show them how to 
set up social and economic organization. The important 
factor, however, is not whether guerillas are in touch with 
national government organizers or Communist organizers. 
What matters most is that millions of people arc fighting in 
defense of their country by defending their own homes and 
their own fields, and are surviving. 

After Pearl Harbor 

V\ ith the news of Pearl Harbor, a great wave of hope 
spread over China. The Chinese were sure that, even though 
the Western nations had failed to see that war with Japan 
was inevitahle, at least they were powerful enough to deal 
summarily with the Japanese once they were involved. 
Optimism turned into deepening depression as the Japanese 
overwhelmed Hongkong, the Philippines. Malaya. Nether- 
lands India, and Burma. When the Burma end of the Burma 
Road Wits lost, the Chinese no longer had any source of over- 
land supply except from Russia. 

Against the increasing disadvantages to China caused by 

Allied disasters there was an agonizingly slow increase of 
aid in the air, both in eomhal planes and in the cargo planes 


flying from India as a substitute for ihe Burma Road. Even 
before Pearl Harbor the policy of ibe United States bad been 
to aid China as innrb as we could without being drawn into 
war. Under this policy a small group of American fliers bad 
been formed in China. These fliers were just completing their 
training at the time of Pearl Harbor, and piled up an aston- 
ishing record in the Burma campaign. They were then re- 
formed into a unit of the United States Army Air Forces, 
which has since become the Fourteenth Air Force, under the 
command of General Chennault. This unit was equipped 
with bombers as well as fighter planes. At the same time 
Chinese pilots were brought to America for advanced training 
and equipped with American planes. 

With the growth of the American Air Force in China, the 
tide began very slowly to turn in favor of China. This new 
turn of the tide became unmistakable in 1943 when Chinese 
and American planes gave a new punch and decisiveness to 
Chinese "magnetic warfare" in breaking up the campaign 


which the Japanese launched against Changtch and inlo the 
so-called "rice bowl" area of norlh Hunan. 


China has been disrupted by the war more than any oilier 
country, even Russia. By 1936 it was well launched on the 
long slow process of transforming the old China inlo a modern 
slate. The accompanying chart gives a dramatic picture of 
advances made between 1927 and 1936. In the next two years, 
Japan wrecked much of what had been accomplished by the 
terrific effort of the previous decade. The war destroyed most 
of China's industry, its railways and its foreign trade, drove 
the students from its universities, and compelled 50,000,000 
people lo migrate to the west. 

W 1 1 r ■ 1 1 the government moved to Chungking at the end of 

1938 it hud to establish itself in a purl of China close to the 
source of raw materials but undeveloped industrially and 
backward in many ways. It had the huge task of rehabilitat- 
ing 50,000.000 refugees, more than one-third as many people 
as there are in the whole United Stales. And it had to face 
a wartime price inflation which developed at an alarming rate. 

At the beginning of 1944 the price of a bowl of rice or a 
pair of shoes in China was 150 times the prewar level and 
still climbing. The reasons for this are many and complicated 
■ — the difficulty of enforcing a satisfactory tax system, the loss 
of the revenues from customs and the salt tax which had 
contributed largely to supporting the government, heavy 
issue of paper money, the hoarding of food and other com- 
modities, lack of production of consumer commodities, and 
the difficulties of transportation. The government has tried 
to impose new taxes and to prevent hoarding but has not been 
able to stop the tide of inflation. 

Much of the progress in reconstruction that China had 

























made from 1927 lo 1937 and its reconstruction program for 
subsequent years might easily have been wiped out by the 
appalling disruptions of war. Bui all was not lost, and the 
process of remaking China is still continuing, tbougli of course 
at a slower rate. Industry is developing in Free China. There 
are new schools, some new roads, and even new railroads. 
And despite normal wartime tightening of controls, the 
Chungking government has made some slight progress toward 
the realization of the democracy that Sun Yat-sen promised 
the Chinese people. If war weariness and defeatism exist in 
some circles today, it is not to he wondered at. It is more im- 
portant for as to do all we can to bolster the morale and 
strengthen the fighting power of the Chinese than to carp and 
criticize. For China is very important to us in the job of de- 
feating Japan. 

Is China a Democracy? 

Because China has a one-party government, and especially 
since the time in 1943 when Chiang Kai-shek became presi- 
dent of the Republic as well as generalissimo of the army, 
one frequently hears China spoken of as a dictatorship. The 
Chinese one-party system, however, differs from fascist one- 
party systems in one important respect. Fascists are ideolog- 
ically antidemocratic, whereas the Kuomintang is founded 
on the democratic thought of Sun Yat-sen and is pledged to 
the creation of a democratic system. Chiang Kai-shek has 
promised that within a year after the end of the war an 
assemhly will be called for the purpose of adopting a con- 
stitution and a representative system of government. There 
are millions of believers in Sun Yat-sen's program for China 
who eagerly await this day. 

In trying to judge how much democracy China has now 
we are apt lo begin by comparing it with our own democratic 
country. Has it the same institutions that we have and the 


same kinds of procedure for seeing that the will of the 
majority is carried out? If it hadn't, we hesitate to call it a 

This way of looking at things can often lead to misunder- 
standings. The most important standard hy which to measure 
progress in a country like China is not "how near have they 
got to our way of doing things?" but "how far have they got 
ahead of the way things used to he done?" Judging them 
by this standard, the Chinese have made very great progress. 
They have made so much progress that they certainly will 
not slip back into the old condition of weakness, chaos, dis- 
unity, and tyranny enforced hy independent regional military 
chieftains, combined with foreign domination of their eco- 
nomic life. They were slowly lifted from that condition hy 
the long struggle of the Chinese Revolution. 

The question is not one of further progress in China, hut 
of how tbe progress will be accomplished. War always in- 
creases the authority of a government, because it is necessary 
for those in power to be able to act decisively with a minimum 
of debate or discussion. But in spite of this fact China during 
the years of war has to some degree increased the facilities 
for the expression of popular opinion. 

The People's Political Council is one example of this. 
Formed during the war, it contains a Kuomintaiig majority, 
but oilier political parties, including the Communists, are 
represented, as well as members nominated or elected hy 
provincial and city governments. Its powers are purely 
advisory. It can suggest legislation, criticize government 
policy, and call on all government departments, including 
the army, for reports. 

Going to School in Wartime 

If progress toward democracy seems slow, progress in other 


iielils has greaily accelerated. One of these is Ihe field of 

Chinese have always had tremendous respect for learning 
and faith in education in spite of the fact that a large propor- 
tion of the population have always been illiterate. Today 
there is a government policy of encouraging mass education 
and a great hunger for learning tin the part of the masses 
which has already markedly reduced illiteracy. In 1940 it 
was estimated that in me preceding two years more than 

46,000,000 people had learned to read. School children are 
encouraged to teach their parents, and older children form 
classes among their neighbors or in the villages. 

Widespread illiteracy in China has chiefly been due to two 
facts. Chinese writing is so extraordinarily difficult and com- 
plicated that only the small leisure class had time to learn 
it, anil books and even newspapers were written in a elassical 
style quite unintelligible to the average man. To teach the 
masses to read, it was necessary first to give them honks and 
newspapers written in the style in which people talk, and 
then to work out an easy system for teaching people to reatl 
this simplified literature. 

Movements were started in the 1920V which are making 
easier the task of teaching a nation to read in wartime. One 
was the so-called "literary renaissance" under the leadership 
of Hu Shih, which developed the use in writing of the pai 
hua (pronounced by hwa) or conversational language, making 
it possible for the average person to learn to reatl in months 
instead of the years it used to take. Another, often referred 
to as the "thousand-character movement," promoted a system 
for learning a thousand characters which would enable peo- 
ple to reatl a simple book or newspaper in pai hua. 

Because China has many more soldiers than she can 
equip and fewer trained leaders than she needs, the govern- 
ment has advised students to continue with their studies, in- 


eluding those in American colleges, in spile of the lure of 
more active patriotic ttork. The epic migration of thousands 
of students from Occupied China into the interior has often 
been told. Students and professors, with what little equip- 
ment they could salvage from llieir bomhed eampuses, walked 
thousands of miles into Free China and started sehool again in 
mud huts or abandoned temples or caves dug in hillsides. In 
spite of all the hardships and difficulties involved, university 
enrollment jumped from 32,000 in 1936 to 45,000 in 1941 and 
enrollment in secondary schools increased from 583.000 in 
1936 to 622.1)00 in 1940. 

Industrial Cooperatives 

Both large and small industries have sprung up in many 
parts of Free China to meet the urgent demand for war male- 
rials and consumer goods of all kinds. Wartime conditions 
however favor small-scale investment and production. It is 
difficult to invest on a large scale because with rapid inflation 
a large investment piles up too much in the way of costs 
before it can get into production. This condition encourages 
owners of capital to buy existing commodities, hoard them, 
ami speculate on the rise in prices rather than invest in 
production of new commodities. On the other hand, the 
scarcity of commodities is so great that a small investment 
which gets into production rapidly, turning out needed com- 
modities, is certain of a good profit and is at the same time 
a direct contribution to the national welfare. 

The difliculty and expensiveness of transport encourage the 
decentralized kind of enterprise which uses local raw mate- 
rials and sells to a hungry local market. This tends to even 
out the development of industrial production over the whole 
country, besides relieving wartime shortage of transport. 

One of the methods used for setting capital to work quickly 
and manufacturing local raw materials into commodities for 


tlie local markets is the industrial cooperative. Early in the 
war a movement known as the Chinese Industrial Coopera- 
tives organized small workcr-owned-and-managed industries 
in many parts of Free China, at first chiefly to provide a 
livelihood for skilled refugees as well as to meet the crying 
need for such articles as soap, candles, and shoes. Improvis- 
ing simple machinery and using whatever raw materials were 
available, they soon had their own machine shops, trans- 
portation and marketing systems, and technical training 
schools, and rapidly expanded to make large quantities of 
blankets and clothing for the armies as well as civilian goods. 
Today they are also manufacturing equipment for the Ameri- 
can forces in China. 

Modern Chinese Women 

Nothing more revolutionary has happened in China than 
the transformation in the lives of countless women in all 
classes of society. Women have always been important and 
influential in China. As in medieval Europe, an exceptional 
few played leading roles in history as warriors, scholars, and 
poets, while millions of others had an indirect effect on public 
life tlirough the power or influence which they wielded 
within the four walls of their own homes. Only within recent 
years, however, have women begun to participate directly in 
public and national life and to hold positions of influence 
not merely as wives or mistresses but in tbeir own right. 

In the early years of the Republic, schools were opened 
for girls. As more of them left home to go to scbool, and 
read Western books and saw American movies, the rigid 
pattern of the old life began to crumble at the edges, par- 
ticularly in the coastal cities where there was contact with 
the West. But at the time of the Japanese invasion the great 
mass of Chinese women still led the old life within their 



The process which contact willi ihe West had started was 
immeasurably speeded up by the war with japan. For one 
thing, 50,000,000 refugees were forced to leave their homes 
and Bee into the far interior of China under circumstances 
which made it almost impossible for families to stay together. 
Sometimes the young people would «;o and the old people 
stay on the land. Sometimes the husband would £o and the 


wife be left behind lo look after those too old or sick to 
travel. Sometimes half :i family would he killed l>y bombs 
and tlie rest would flee. Chihlrcn would heroine separated 
from their parents and wives from husbands. 

This great migration not only dislodged 50,000.000 people 

from their homes, hut it also uprooted the family system of 
China. Kven the families who were not foreed to move 
hundreds of miles and those who were not bombed out of 
their homes Cannot earry on in the old way, for high prices 
and a labor shortage mean that almost everyone must work, 
men and Women alike. 

Today there is almost no held of work whieh is not open 
to women. Not Jong ago a hank was opened in Chungking 
owned and operated by women. There are industrial coopera- 
tives in. in.: "-'J by women, am] women railway and mining 
engineers and government officials. In 1°43 there were fifteen 
women members of the People's Political Council. 

Madame Chiang Kai-shek has organized a Women's Atl- 
visory Council through which she has mobilized enormous 
numbers of women all over Free China to do various forms 
of war work, such as nursing, earing for orphans and refugees, 
organizing cooperatives, and teaching women sewing and 
other crafts. 

The Chinese woman of today has exchanged her security 
and seclusion for insecurity and freedom. 

But China Is Not Yet Modernized 

When we talk of the "progress" made by China in the 
years since 1927, not only in political life, education, industry, 
and the position of women, but in health anil sanitation, 
famine control, improved methods of farming, and so forth, 
we must bear one thing in mind. China is still "backward" 
in all these fields by modern American standards and has 


made remarkable progress only in relation lo ihe China of a 
generation ago. 

Americana going to China for the first time are still 
shocked by ihe poverty and dirt and disease, the lark of 
sanitary facilities, and the poorly equipped and under- 
nourished soldiers about whose valor they have heard so 
much. Americans need to understand that China has only 
begun lo acquire the scientific and technical knowledge 
(most of which we ourselves have had for less than a hun- 
dred years) which is needed In deal with germs. Moods, and 
famines, or to build machinery and modern plumbing. As 


for poverty, most careful students believe that only by dealing 
fundamentally with the age-old landlord-peasant conflict can 
this be noticeably lessened. 

China's roots are so deep and its ancient civilization so 
strong that it is probable (and many think desirable) that 
when China does become modernized, it will not. as Japan 
did, simply copy the superficial features of Vi ester n life. 
Rather, a new China will be created which is modern but 
still different from the West. Symptoms of this deep change 
are the new and creative painting and literature which have 


blossomed in the war years and which are both truly modern 
and truly Chinese. 

At the moment China's difficulties may loom larger than 
its progress. The ravages of seven years of war are serious. 
Chinese are not all heroes, hut are very human, and we must 
understand that they are in a tough spot. It is to our interest 
to help i ln'in. and relief agencies have widely advertised their 
need of help. Many Chinese today, however, prefer to have 
us emphasize their ability to help themselves. The Chinese 
have already accomplished more by their Nationalist revolu- 
tion and by their resistance to Japan than almost any Ameri- 
can dreamed possible twenty or even ten years ago. 

After the War 

There are several questions which are often asked about 
China after the war. Will the Chinese really be able to 
establish a democratic form of government ? Will the govern- 
ment be able to maintain order or will there be civil war:* 
Will there be opportunities in China for foreign trade and 
investment? What will be the position of China among the 
nations after a victorious war? 

The degree of democracy attained in China during the war 
is not an adequate indication of her democracy in the future. 
The long battle front in China has been relatively stable now 
for about four years. Behind this battle front the Kuomin- 
tang, which controls the government, has tended to tighten 
up discipline and to impose both uniformity and conformity. 
It can be expected that when the process of recovering the 
invaded parts of China begins there will be spontaneous but 
often naive and even Utopian attempts to establish democratic 
methods and procedures. Democracy is the opposite of the 
system of terror and force which Japan has imposed. It is 
what the Chinese people have been promised Tor the future 


and what the people long for as something that will instantly 
bring a happy life, free from abuses. The administrators who 
are sent into the newly liberated areas will have to cope with 
this outburst of the feeling of liberty. It is reasonable to 
expect practical compromises between the popular instinct 
for untrammeled liberty and the organized drive of the 
Kuomintang for uniformity, discipline, and control. 

At this point the question of the Chinese Communists will 
become acute, but it is far from certain that it will be so 
acute as to result in civil war. Agents of the Communists, 
even more than the representatives of the Kuomintang, will 
have to compromise between what they would like to do and 
what the people want them to do. It must also be remembered 
that the Kuomintang, as the established party controlling 
China, has had freedom to teach the complete range of its 
doctrines and theories. The Communists, in a marginal part 
of Free China, hard pressed by tlie Japanese, have been able 
to preach only a wartime doctrine of patriotism and survival. 
They have had to persuade peasants that they stand for 
lighter taxes and more popular representation, and at the 
same time to persuade landlords; that they do not stand for 
the seizing of private property. Thus they are already a party 
of compromise, and it is at least possible that after the war, 
instead of becoming a party of extremism, they will be found 
to be a party of moderation. Both Communists and Kuomin- 
tang have a great stake in avoiding civil war. All that China 
has gained during the national war of survival would be 
ruined by civil war. 

The Chinese will have an enormous task after the war, 
not only of rebuilding what die Japanese have destroyed, but 
in carrying forward the process of transformation of their 
whole life which was interrupted by the war. They will need 
foreign capital and foreign trade, but they will not need it 
badly enough to give to foreigners any measure of control 


of China's internal affairs. They will welcome business on a 
basis of equality but not on a basis of exploitation. 

China's future policies toward other countries, like China's 
developments at home, will be of primary concern to every- 
one. The abolition of the unequal treaties by America and 
Britain has already symbolized the end of the hundred years 
of China's semieolonial subjection. China's part in the final 
victory will give significance to that symbolic act 

No longer will the destinies of Asia he dictated by imperial 
powers. Nor, on the other hand, is it to be expected that 
China will embark on an imperialistic career of its own. 
Chiang Kai-shek advocates a genera] and rapid evolution 
out of the colonial system for Asia, and has plainly stated 
that China has no imperialistic ambitions. Without imperial- 
ism it is highly probable that China will grow in importance 
not only in Asia but in the world. The time may come when, 
instead of its being important to have China on our side, as 
it is today, it will be important in the world picture for us to 
be on China's side. 

We no longer live in a world of "the European question," 
"the Balkan question," "the Russian question," "the Near 
Kastern question," "the Indian question," "'the Far Eastern 
question." That era is over. We live in a world where such 
questions are only local aspects of the world question. 
Whether we make a success of that new world will depend 
on the interaction of two things: the success or failure that 
each nation makes of its own affairs, and the success or failure 
of all nations in dealing with each other as neighbors in a 
world order. 



China's heroic resistance lo the modern military might of 

Japan lias caused many of us to wonder in astonishment how 
such a nonimlusirializcd, loosely organized nation could 
earry on as it has. We have heeu inclined to accept the con- 
tinued resistance of the Chinese at* an unexplainahle miracle. 
Bul the Chinese themselves are driven hy moral ami spiritual 
forces, aided hy geographical and oilier considerations, thai 
can he understood. That Americans should understand the 
character of llie Chinese people ami government is important 
because of llie hid this ancient nation is making for a high 
place among modern powers. ^ on will find this pamphlet 
contains material sufficient for several interesting meetings. 

Much of this material gives background that is a necessary 
basis for intelligent leadership nf discussion about China's 
future. It may be used in a number of ways. The plans out- 
lined here are intended as suggestions to be used as you 
believe practicable within the local policies under which you 
operate your educational program. 

One or more forums. You have here material for four 
meetings in which a twenty- lo thirty-minute talk is followed 
by a question period. Each of the meetings might cover one 
of the following topics: 

1. The Chinese, their country, and their old civilization 

2. China: Relations with the West and the story of the 

two revolutions 
.'$. War with Japan 
1. China's future 
Careful reading of the pamphlet will suggest to you appro- 


priate arrangements of lliese topicH for either three or two 
meetings. If you wish to plan only one session, it will prob- 
ably be most fruitful to emphasize the two sections that 
appear under the main headings, "Who Are the Chinese?" 
and "Today and Tomorrow." No matter how many forum 
type meetings you plan, be sure to secure the service of an 
effective speaker or speakers. It is possible for a speaker to 
study the pamphlet and make a forceful presentation, hut 
your forum will be more successful if your speaker is already 
well informed about China. He will be better prepared to 
answer the variety of questions that are pure to be asked. 

A series of informal discussions. The nature of this mate- 
rial about China is such that you will probably wish to 
organize study type discussions rather than the type that 
naturally develops from a highly controversial subject. For 
these you can very well use plans similar to those outlined 
above as far as subject-matter is concerned. In an informal 
study group, however, it would be a good idea to reduce the 
opening lecture to the proportions of a five or ten minute 
introduction that covers only especially important informa- 
tion. You would then prepare a series of questions which 
would be calculated to bring out points important for the 
topic under study. It is well to remember also thai your 
group members will take more constructive part in the pro- 
ceedings if they have done some advance reading. Through 
library, service club, or other central reading room try to 
make it possible for each member to have access to a copy 
of this pamphlet. 

In planning questions for your discussion, those given below 
may be helpful. The list is by no means exhaustive, so that 
you may prefer to search out your own. 

Who are the Chinese? 

What are the Chinese like? Have we any accepted customs 


similar to the practice of "squeeze"? Have Chinese a sense 
of humor that Americans can understand? Do you think 
that Chinese emphasis upon "face" is difficult to understand? 
Is the typical Chinese friendly and democratic in his ways of 
meeting people? Do Chinese believe in individual oppor- 
tunity? Arc they fatalistic? 

The oldest civilization — asset or liability? 

Are there advantages and disadvantages to China in having 
the oldest civilization in the world? Does it make modern 
industrialization difficult? Does it foster desirable personal 
qualities? Will it hinder or stimulate progress in education? 
How do you explain the presence of poverty and disease so 
evident everywhere in China? 

A miracle? 

How do you explain the fact that in spite of inferior and 
inadequate equipment China has been able to resist Japan 
for nearly seven years of war? Is it geography? Unity among 
Chinese in their spirit of resistance? Quality of Chinese 
leaders? Ideals of Sun Yat-sen? Aid from the other United 
Nations? $ 

Is China a democracy? 

In what sense can you call China a democracy today? Does 
the Kuomiutang stand for democratic principles? How is the 
war affecting Chinese Communist principles? Can China go 
far toward democracy under war conditions? Why? Will 
the Chinese after the war be able to establish a democratic 
form of government as we think of democracy? Is our pat- 
tern of democracy the only possible one? Would it suit 
China? Do you think there is likely to he civil war in China 
after Japan is defeated? Can the Chinese government meet 


the problems of the Chinese Communists after the war? Will 
the prewar pattern of rule by independent war lords be likely 
to reappear? 

China tomorrow 

What will he China's plaee in the postwar world? Will 
there be opportunities for foreign trade and investment afler 
the war? Will the Chinese try to develop heavy or light in- 
dustries? Do you believe that China may embark on an 
imperialistic career of its own when Japan is no longer a 
menace? Will China assume a position of leadership anions 
other countries of Asia? 

How to conduct discussion meetings. Suggestions for 
organizing a discussion program and for conducting forums, 
informal discussion groups, panel discussions, symposiums, 
and debates are given in KM I, G. /. Roundtable: Guide for 
Discussion Lenders. This guide, a pamphlet published by 
the War Department in the name series as the present one 
on China, contains useful advice on the objectives of off-duty 
discussions, on promoting the program, on choosing subjects, 
on die use of visual aids, and on other practical matters. 
Kvery discussion leader should have a copy for reference. 


These publications are suggested if it so happens that you 
have access to them. They are not approved nor officially sup- 
plied by the War Department. They give more information 
and represent different points of view. 

Four pamphlets which might well be read to supplement 
the material in this booklet arc: Changing China by George 
E. Taylor, Chirm — America's Ally by Robert W. Barnett. 


The (Jumping Far East by V illiam C. Johnstone, and War- 
Time China by Maxwell S. Stewart. The first three are pub- 
lished by the Institute of Pacific Relations. I East 54th Street. 
New York 22. N.Y. (1942), and the third is No. 41 in the 
Headline Series of the Foreign Policy Association. 22 East 
38lh Street. New York 16. N.Y. (August 1943). 

There is more about China's history and geography, ami 
I he. way they help to explain her present problems, in The 
Making of Miulrrn China by Owen and Eleanor Lattimore. 
published by W. W. Norton and Company. 70 Fifth Avenue. 
New York, N.Y. (1944), and in L. Carrington Goodrich's 
Short History of the Chinese People, published by Harper 
and Brothers, 49 East 33rd Street, New York 16, N.Y. (1943). 

Is China a Democracy by Creighton Lacy, published bv 
John Day Company, 2 West 45lh Street, New York 19, N.Y. 
(1942), and The Battle for Asia by Ed»ar Snow, published 
by Random House. Inc., 20 East 57th Street, New York. N.Y. 
(1941), answer many questions about the China of today. 

Far Eastern War 1937-41 by Harold S. Qui«ley, published 
by the World Peace Foundation. 40 Ml. Vernon Street, Bos- 
ton, Mass. (1942) gives a good survey and analysis of the 
events within the period indicated in the title. 

Three novels about China in the war years are: Dragon Seed 
by Pearl Buck (John Day— New York! 1942) ; A Leaf in the 
Storm by Lin Yutang (John Day— New York, 1941); and 
Destination Chungking by Han Su Yin. published by Little. 
Brown and Company. 34 Beacon Street, Boston, Mass. (1942). 

Translations of modern Chinese literature also help to fill 
in the picture. Living China (John Day — New York. 1936) is 
a collection of contemporary short stories. Village in August 
published by Smith and Durrell. Inc., 25 West 45th Street, 
New York, N.Y. (1942) is a novel about the war by a Chinese 

1?? U. « GOVERNMENT PBIKTtNG OFFICE 600435—1944