Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.
The tag 'Henry Luce' is associated with 4 posts.

FTR#1202 The Narco-Fascism of Chiang Kai-shek and the Kuomintang, Part 9

Con­tin­u­ing our series on the regime of Chi­ang Kai-shek–all but beat­i­fied dur­ing the Cold War–we draw still more on a mag­nif­i­cent book–The Soong Dynasty by Ster­ling Sea­grave. Although sad­ly out of print, the book is still avail­able through used book ser­vices, and we emphat­i­cal­ly encour­age lis­ten­ers to take advan­tage of those and obtain it.

(Mr. Emory gets no mon­ey from said pur­chas­es of the book.)

Tack­ling Amer­i­can ide­o­log­i­cal delu­sion vis a vis Chi­ang Kai-shek and the Kuom­intang, the broad­cast resumes analy­sis of the embrace of Chi­ang by the State Depart­ment and the allied U.S. press and the schism with the War Depart­ment (lat­er the Depart­ment of Defense.)

Chi­ang’s anti-Com­mu­nism endeared him to ele­ments of State, even–as we have seen–his obses­sion with fight­ing the CCP instead of the invad­ing Japan­ese was cor­rect­ly fore­cast by T.V. Soong, among oth­ers as dri­ving the Chi­nese peo­ple into the arms of the invaders.

” . . . . Washington–not as rep­re­sent­ed by Chief-of-Staff George C. Mar­shall but as typ­i­fied by FDR’s advi­sor Har­ry Hopkins–increasingly shared Chi­ang’s fix­a­tion with the post­war threat of Com­mu­nism. To please the Gen­er­alis­si­mo and his sup­port­ers in Amer­i­ca, the Wash­ing­ton of Hop­kins and the Depart­ment of State was pre­pared to sac­ri­fice any num­ber of its own peo­ple. . . .”

Fur­ther devel­op­ing the cir­cum­stances lead­ing to the replace­ment of the skilled, hero­ic Amer­i­can Gen­er­al Joseph Stil­well and the polit­i­cal defen­es­tra­tion of the State Depart­men­t’s best “Chi­na Watch­ers,” we note the role of the con­sum­mate­ly pow­er­ful Soong fam­i­ly in shap­ing U.S. ide­o­log­i­cal delu­sion con­cern­ing Chi­ang Kai-shek.

It is a con­sum­mate irony that the dog­mat­ic anti-Com­mu­nists allied with Chi­ang and the Soongs were the ones who “Lost Chi­na,” as the McCarthyites and the Chi­na Lob­by put it. (Of course Chi­ang and the KMT them­selves were the prin­ci­pal agen­cies involved in said loss.)

The War Depart­ment as embod­ied by Chief-of-Staff Gen­er­al George C. Mar­shall did not share the infat­u­a­tion with Chi­ang, and sided with Chi­ang’s neme­sis, Gen­er­al Joseph Stilwell–the top U.S. mil­i­tary offi­cer in the China/Burma the­ater.

” . . . . Amer­i­ca failed to under­stand the trap it was falling into because the State Depart­ment was not lis­ten­ing to its Chi­na Watch­ers. Very few of their secret reports actu­al­ly reached the Sec­re­tary of State, because the rest were being inter­cept­ed by par­ti­sans inside the depart­ment hier­ar­chy. . . . Accord­ing to infor­ma­tion gath­ered by the FBI at the time, some­one high in the depart­ment was pass­ing this secret infor­ma­tion straight over to Chi­na Defense Sup­plies, to be read by T V. Soong and to be act­ed upon as he saw fit. So the Amer­i­cans sent to Chi­na to watch Chi­ang’s regime were report­ing to the Soong fam­i­ly, not to Pres­i­dent Roo­sevelt. . . . At the War Depart­ment, the sit­u­a­tion was quite dif­fer­ent. Gen­er­al Mar­shall was sus­pi­cious of Chi­ang, and lis­tened to Stil­well’s warn­ings. . . .” 

Key ele­ments of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include: Joseph Alsop’s role as a Chiang/Soong par­ti­san; Alsop’s World War II role as the Chungk­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tive of Lend-Lease pro­gram; Intro­duc­to­ry dis­cus­sion of T.L. Soong (younger broth­er of T.V.) and his role as first, admin­is­tra­tor of U.S. Lend-Lease in Chi­na and, lat­er, admin­is­tra­tor of Lend-Lease in the U.S. (this will be dealt with at greater length lat­er in the series); Alsop’s post­war career as a not­ed jour­nal­ist, close­ly linked to the CIA; Gen­er­al Claire Chen­nault’s hatred of Stil­well; review of Chen­nault’s role as leader of the Fly­ing Tigers (the Amer­i­can Vol­un­teer Group); Chennault’s asser­tion to FDR that his Four­teenth Air Force could use for­ward bases to dec­i­mate Japan­ese ship­ping; Stilwell’s cor­rect counter-asser­tion that the Japan­ese would sim­ply destroy the for­ward air bases upon which Chen­nault based his asser­tions; the 1944 Japan­ese offen­sive known as Oper­a­tion Ichi­go; the resound­ing suc­cess of the Japan­ese offen­sive; review (from our pre­vi­ous pro­gram) of KMT Gen­er­al T’ang En-po’s dis­as­trous com­mand of the Chi­nese forces oppos­ing the Japan­ese Ichi­go offen­sive; the view of the State Department’s Chi­na watch­ers and Vice-Pres­i­dent Hen­ry Wal­lace that Chi­ang Kai-shek could not suc­cess­ful­ly rule post­war Chi­na; the War Department’s tem­po­rary ele­va­tion of Gen­er­al Stil­well to com­mand the KMT armies in Chi­na; Chiang’s fierce and suc­cess­ful resis­tance of Chi­ang to Stilwell’s ele­va­tion; Chiang’s insis­tence on a quid-pro-quo for agree­ing to allow U.S. observers into the Com­mu­nist-con­trolled areas of China—an agree­ment that fea­tured the replace­ment of Stil­well with Major Gen­er­al Albert C. Wede­mey­er; Chiang’s insis­tence on the replace­ment of Ambas­sador Clarence Gauss; the deci­sive appoint­ment of Major Gen­er­al Patrick J. Hur­ley as Roosevelt’s per­son­al rep­re­sen­ta­tive to Chiang—an appoint­ment which led to Stilwell’s replace­ment with Wede­mey­er.

Stilwell’s replace­ment by Gen­er­al Wede­mey­er was noteworthy—particularly in light of the back­ground and behav­ior of Wede­mey­er.

The pro­gram recaps infor­ma­tion pre­sent­ed in AFA#11.

In addi­tion to being part of a polit­i­cal and mil­i­tary milieu that infused iso­la­tion­ist ori­en­ta­tion toward involve­ment in World War II with pro-fas­cist sen­ti­ment, Wede­mey­er was a chief sus­pect in an act of con­sum­mate treason—the leak of the Rain­bow Five Amer­i­can mobi­liza­tion plan for World War II to anti-FDR pub­lish­er Robert J. McCormick (of the Chica­go Tri­bune.) (As cel­e­brat­ed anti-fas­cist jour­nal­ist and researcher George Seldes has doc­u­ment­ed, the “iso­la­tion­ist” Amer­i­ca First orga­ni­za­tion received financ­ing from the Abwehr [Ger­man intel­li­gence dur­ing the Third Reich.])

Key points of dis­cus­sion and analy­sis include:

1.–Wedemeyer’s back­ground: “ . . . . he him­self had been edu­cat­ed in part at the Ger­man War Col­lege, in Berlin. He rent­ed his apart­ment from a mem­ber of the Nazi Par­ty, Ger­hard Ross­bach, and dur­ing his sojourn became a great friend of Gen­er­al Lud­wig Beck, chief of the Ger­man Gen­er­al Staff. . . . (Ross­bach was, in fact, the num­ber two man in the SA behind Ernst Rolm. As dis­cussed in AFA#11, Ross­bach went to work for the CIA after the war.–D.E.) . . . .Right­ly or wrong­ly, he was regard­ed by the Ger­man embasssy in Wash­ing­ton as part of the pro-Ger­man mil­i­tary clique in teh War Depart­ment. . . .”
2.–Wedemeyer’s asso­ci­a­tion with key per­son­nel on the Ger­man Gen­er­al staff: ” . . . . His intro­duc­tions to Beck were arranged by Lieu­tenant Gen­er­al Friedrich von Boet­tich­er, Ger­man mil­i­tary attache in Wash­ing­ton. He cor­re­spond­ed reg­u­lar­ly withy his Ger­man con­tacts until the advent of World War II in Europe. . . .” 
3.–The Third Reich’s devel­op­ment of a Fifth Col­umn with­in its Amer­i­can coun­ter­part: ” . . . . The numer­ous mem­o­ran­da of Hans Thom­sen and Boet­tich­er to Berlin at the time indi­cate that a series of con­tacts had been estab­lished in this group held meet­ings at the home of for­mer Amer­i­can mil­i­tary attache in Berlin Colonel Tru­man Smith. Although pro-Ger­man and a sym­pa­thiz­er of Amer­i­ca First, Smith had the ear of Gen­er­al Mar­shall. . . .”
4.–The theft of the Rain­bow Five man­u­script by a U.S. mil­i­tary offi­cer. ” . . . . On the night of Decem­ber 3, 1941, an office attached to the War Plans Divi­sion decid­ed on his own account to con­sult some of the doc­u­ments at home. It was a sim­ple mat­ter to unlock the steel cab­i­net and remove the large expand­ing fold­er of sev­er­al hun­dred pages. That he was not autho­rized to do so is indi­cat­ed by the fact that he found it nec­es­sary to wrap the file in heavy brown paper, to make it look like a par­cel for mail­ing. . . .”
5.–The fact that Wede­mey­er under­lined the same pas­sages in his copy of the man­u­script as even­tu­al­ly found their way into the Chica­go Tri­bune piece: ” . . . . . Back in his office, Wede­mey­er faced a very unpleas­ant sit­u­a­tion. [J. Edgar] Hoover had dis­patched his num­ber-one man, Edward Tamm, to the office, and Tamm was stand­ing by an open fil­ing cab­i­net while Wede­mey­er’s sec­re­tary was sob­bing into her hands. One of Tam­m’s men was hold­ing a copy of the Vic­to­ry Pro­gram. The same pas­sages were under­lined in red by Wede­mey­er as appeared in the news­pa­pers . . . .”

The pro­gram con­cludes with a look at the fate of the Third Force or Third Option formed by Mme. Sun Yat-sen (nee Ching-ling Soong) and Teng Yen-ta, a per­sis­tent crit­ic of Chi­ang Kai-shek.

Dis­il­lu­sioned with Com­mu­nism after a sojourn in Moscow, Mme. Sun Yat-sen part­nered with Teng Yen-ta, who rec­og­nized Chi­ang’s fas­cism and, yet, felt that the Chi­nese Com­mu­nist Par­ty (at that point in time) was over­ly loy­al to Moscow and was­n’t doing enough for the Chi­nese peas­antry.

Both Ching-ling and Teng Yen-ta sought an alter­na­tive to both Kuom­intang fas­cism and the Chi­nese Com­mu­nist Par­ty.

Find­ing the demo­c­ra­t­ic social­ism pro­posed by Ching-ling and Teng Yen-ta unac­cept­able, Chi­ang had the British and Amer­i­can police author­i­ties arrest him in the Inter­na­tion­al Con­ces­sion in Shang­hai, after which he was tor­tured for many months.

Ching-ling was report­ed to have vis­it­ed Chi­ang to plead for Teng Yen-ta’s release. Chi­ang had  already dealt with him in char­ac­ter­is­tic fash­ion: “ . . . . Days ear­li­er, on Novem­ber 29, 1931, near­ly a year after his arrest, Ten Yen-ta had been tak­en from his cell at Chiang’s com­mand and was slow­ly stran­gled with a wire. The exe­cu­tion­er was said to be famous for keep­ing vic­tims alive for half an hour while he tight­ened his grip. In his office, Chi­ang had remained silent while Ching-ling plead­ed for a man already dead, enjoy­ing the spec­ta­cle of her momen­tary vul­ner­a­bil­i­ty. . . .”


FTR#1201 The Narco-Fascism of Chiang Kai-shek and the Kuomintang, Part 8

Con­tin­u­ing our series on the regime of Chi­ang Kai-shek–all but beat­i­fied dur­ing the Cold War–we draw still more on a mag­nif­i­cent book–The Soong Dynasty by Ster­ling Sea­grave. Although sad­ly out of print, the book is still avail­able through used book ser­vices, and we emphat­i­cal­ly encour­age lis­ten­ers to take advan­tage of those and obtain it.

(Mr. Emory gets no mon­ey from said pur­chas­es of the book.)

The broad­cast begins with review of the denoue­ment of the Siang inci­dent, detailed in FTR#1200.

Points of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include:

1.–Eventually, Chi­ang grudg­ing­ly agreed to the coali­tion, appar­ent­ly after T.V. Soong saw to it that Chi­ang got a sig­nif­i­cant amount of mon­ey. “ . . . . The Young Mar­shal gal­lant­ly accept­ed all blame for the Sian Inci­dent, allow­ing Chi­ang to wash his hands in pub­lic and wipe them on him. (Inter­est­ing­ly he was put up at T.V. Soong’s home in Nanking.) He had done Chi­na a his­toric ser­vice by bring­ing about the long-sought unit­ed front, what­ev­er its lat­er fail­ings. . . .”
2.–Chiang’s reluc­tant agree­ment was trum­pet­ed by Hen­ry Luce: “ . . . . He put them [Chi­ang and Mme. Chi­ang] on the cov­er of Time’s first issue of 1938 as ‘Man and Wife of the Year.’ May-ling Soong Chi­ang now became an even big­ger inter­na­tion­al celebri­ty. . . .”
3.–As was his wont, Chi­ang broke his promise to the Young Mar­shal and Gen­er­al Yang. Laud­ed by Hen­ry Luce and his asso­ciates as an Exem­plary Chris­t­ian, Chi­ang promised an amnesty on Good Friday—a promise he prompt­ly broke. “ . . . . In his Good Fri­day mes­sage to Chi­na that spring of 1937, Chi­ang referred to the Sian Inci­dent and said pious­ly, ‘Remem­ber­ing that Christ enjoined us to for­give those who sin against us until sev­en­ty times sev­en and upon their repen­tance, I felt that that they should be allowed to start life anew. . . .”
3.–Similar treat­ment was afford­ed Gen­er­al Yang: “ . . . . The Young Marshal’s co-con­spir­a­tor, Gen­er­al Yang, despite the Good Fri­day amnesty, was impris­oned when he came back from Euro­pean exile and lan­guished for eleven years in one of Tai Li’s spe­cial deten­tion camps near Chungk­ing. His wife went on a hunger strike in protest and was allowed to starve her­self to death. . . .”

On his last trip through Chi­na before decamp­ing to Tai­wan, Chi­ang ordered the exe­cu­tion of Gen­er­al Yang and his sur­viv­ing fam­i­ly: “ . . . . As long as he was in Chunk­ing any­way, the Gen­er­alis­si­mo stopped by police head­quar­ters to fin­ish off one remain­ing bit of ‘per­son­al’ busi­ness. In the Chunk­ing prison, there was still a pris­on­er who was very spe­cial. It was Yang Hu-Cheng, the war­lord who had joined the Young Mar­shal to kid­nap Chi­ang in the Sian Inci­dent. . . . For eleven years, Yang, a son, and a daugh­ter (along with a loy­al sec­re­tary and his wife) lan­guished in Tai-Li’s con­cen­tra­tion camp out­side Chunk­ing. Now, before leav­ing Chi­na for good, Chi­ang made this spe­cial trip just to sign Yang’s death war­rant. The old man, his son, his daugh­ter, his sec­re­tary, and the secretary’s wife were all tak­en out and shot. . . .”

A sig­na­ture episode in China’s World War II his­to­ry is what became known as the New Fourth Army Inci­dent.

Key points of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include:

1.–When the Chi­nese Com­mu­nist Fourth Army, act­ing under the aus­pices of the accord wrest­ed from Chi­ang at Sian, was prepar­ing a cam­paign that would have dis­turbed a sym­bi­ot­ic rela­tion­ship between the Japan­ese and Tu Yueh-sheng, it was ambushed by Kuom­intang gen­er­al Ku Chu‑t’ung. Ku Chu‑t’ung was the broth­er of Tu Yueh-sheng’s pow­er­ful har­bor boss Ku Tsu-chuan. “ . . . . Chiang’s defense of Chi­na was being por­trayed by T.V. Soong as a valiant defi­ance against Japan­ese hordes car­ried out assid­u­ous­ly by KMT gen­er­als. If so, it was pro­ceed­ing in a curi­ous fash­ion. Chi­ang was engag­ing in as lit­tle actu­al fight­ing as pos­si­ble. . . . Chi­ang was hus­band­ing his resources for a renew­al of his war with the Com­mu­nists. Once holed up in Chungk­ing, he let the peo­ple fend for them­selves. . . .”
2.–Worth not­ing in this con­text is the fact that Chi­nese troops were capa­ble of defeat­ing the Japan­ese in bat­tle and enjoyed cel­e­bra­to­ry sup­port from the country’s pop­u­lace when they did so. This dynam­ic became cen­tral to the entreaties made (in vain) by Gen­er­al Joseph Stil­well lat­er in the war and his sub­se­quent dis­missal and replace­ment: “ . . . . On only one occa­sion, a KMT army under Gen­er­al Li Tsung-jen proved that Chi­nese sol­diers could whip the Japan­ese when they had the will to do so, in the bat­tle of Taier­chuang in April 1938. Th Japan­ese in this instance were bad­ly beat­en and the peo­ple of Chi­na were elat­ed. But Chi­ang ordered the army not to pur­sue, and with­in weeks of Taier­chuang the Japan­ese had recov­ered the ini­tia­tive. . . .”
3.–Typical of the lethal­ly incom­pe­tent con­duct of the war by Chiang’s KMT armies was the Yel­low Riv­er dikes inci­dent. “ . . . . One of Chiang’s few attempts to slow the Japan­ese led him to dyna­mite the dikes on the Yel­low Riv­er. With­out warn­ing of any kind, three provinces, eleven cities, and four thou­sand vil­lages were flood­ed, two mil­lion peo­ple were made home­less, and all their crops were destroyed. The Japan­ese were only bogged down for three months. . . . Chiang’s gov­ern­ment tried to put the blame on the Japan­ese and the Tai­wan gov­ern­ment con­tin­ues to do so today. [1985—D.E.] . . .”
4.–Taking prece­dence over fight­ing the Japan­ese was Chiang’s political/military pri­or­i­ti­za­tion of wag­ing civ­il war against the Com­mu­nists: “. . . . By 1940–41, Chiang’s sphere of influ­ence had shrunk while the Com­mu­nists’ area had, expand­ed at the expense of the Japan­ese. In the red area, sol­diers, gueril­las, and peas­ants were fight­ing furi­ous­ly and with results. But, each time the reds enlarged their perime­ter, Chi­ang had his army attack the Com­mu­nists instead of the Japan­ese, to keep his rivals from mak­ing ter­ri­to­r­i­al gains. It was a war with­in a war. Chi­ang had half a mil­lion sol­diers occu­pied blockad­ing the red area in the North­west. . . .”
5.–Chiang’s anti-com­mu­nist strat­e­gy reached an extreme with the New Fourth Army Inci­dent. When a com­mu­nist army moved into an area in which the Green Gang and Japan­ese had estab­lished a coop­er­a­tive rela­tion­ship, it was ambushed: “ . . . . Part of the Unit­ed Front agree­ment involved putting Mao’s Red Army under joint KMT com­mand. . . . In 1941, the [Com­mu­nist] New Fourth Army was assigned to oper­ate under joint KMT-CCP com­mand along the south bank of the Yangtze Riv­er with­in the orbit of the Green Gang. . . .”
6.–Green Gang’s dope rack­ets had con­tin­ued in the area: “ . . . . The gang’s oper­a­tions had not seri­ous­ly dimin­ished because of the war. The gang oper­at­ed under the Japan­ese occu­pa­tion much as it had before, although Big-eared Tu, bear­ing the rank of gen­er­al in the KMTR, wide­ly moved to Chunk­ing. In his absence, the Shang­hai gang head­quar­ters was left in the hands of Tu’s har­bor boss, Ku Tsu-chuan. As a com­ple­ment Gen­er­alis­si­mo Chi­ang gave all mil­i­tary respon­si­bil­i­ties for the low­er Yangtze riv­er to Ku’s broth­er, Gen­er­al Ku Chu‑t’ung. . . .”
7.–The New Fourth Army was going to move against a rail­way. “ . . . . This was an area in which there was coop­er­a­tion between the Green Gang and the Japan­ese. In return for per­mit­ting its opi­um smug­gling and under­world oper­a­tions to go on unin­ter­rupt­ed, the Green Gang guar­an­teed the secu­ri­ty of Japan­ese gar­risons and enter­pris­es in the Yangtze Val­ley. . . .”
7.–“ . . . . Gen­er­al Ku, in con­sul­ta­tion with Chi­ang Kai-shek, decid­ed that the New Fourth Army was a threat to this fief­dom. . . .”
8.–Taking a safer route—to avoid being sent to an area which would have fed them into a Japan­ese ambush, the New Fourth Army left key parts of its troops and sup­port per­son­nel behind.
9.–“ . . . . sud­den­ly, ear­ly in Jan­u­ary, 1941, Gen­er­al Ku fell upon it with a much greater force and mas­sa­cred all but the head­quar­ters con­tin­gent and its women cadres and nurs­es. All five thou­sand com­bat sol­diers left behind as a guard were slain. Accord­ing to sur­vivors, the men of the head­quar­ters staff were then butchered. The KMT gen­er­al who had been com­mand­ing the New Fourth was arrest­ed, while the CCP polit­i­cal com­mis­sar of the unit—who had escaped the 1927 Shang­hai Massacre—was bru­tal­ly mur­dered. Mean­while the Com­mu­nist nurs­es and women polit­i­cal cadres, many of them school­girls, were being and raped repeat­ed­ly by hun­dreds of sol­diers. They were kept in army broth­els near the attack site for a year and a half. The women con­tract­ed vene­re­al dis­eases and some com­mit­ted sui­cide, singly and with each other’s help. . . .”
10.–General Ku Chu‑t’ung was reward­ed for this by Chi­ang, who made him com­man­der-in-chief of al KMT armies.

The pro­gram then reviews Gen­er­al Ku Chu-t’ung’s col­lab­o­ra­tion with Kodama Yoshio and the Japan­ese to–among oth­er things–re-sell them Amer­i­can Lend Lease goods that were flown Over the Hump or trav­el­ing via the equal­ly per­ilous Bur­ma Road. 

T.V. Soong’s broth­er T.L. Soong was in charge of the Lend-Lease pro­gram to Chi­na dur­ing World War II.

The col­lab­o­ra­tion between the Japan­ese and the Kuom­intang offi­cer corps—who, it must be remem­bered, were also king­pins of the Green Gang crim­i­nal syndicate—was a con­sis­tent pat­tern. The KMT avoid­ed fight­ing the Japan­ese when­ev­er pos­si­ble, and formed com­mer­cial rela­tion­ships with the invaders:  “ . . . . bar­ter­ing Amer­i­can Lend-Lease mate­ri­als for Japan­ese con­sumer goods. For­tunes were made. The only KMT armies that did fight were those under Stilwell’s con­trol in Bur­ma . . . .”

Embody­ing the cor­rup­tion that was part and par­cel to the Kuom­intang military’s offi­cer corps (mint­ed at the Wham­poa acad­e­my), was Gen­er­al T’ang En-po. In addi­tion to his col­lab­o­ra­tion with the Japan­ese invaders, he viewed his mil­i­tary com­mis­sion as license to steal and betray the men under his com­mand, as well as Chi­na and the Amer­i­can and oth­er Allies with which Chi­ang was offi­cial­ly arrayed.

Key points of dis­cus­sion and analy­sis:

1.–General Tang En-po’s close asso­ci­a­tion with the Ku broth­ers and the Green Gang.
2.–General Tang En-po’s role in blow­ing up the Yel­low Riv­er dikes.
3.–His bar­ter­ing of Amer­i­can Lend-Lease mate­ri­als to the Japan­ese.
4.–His plun­der­ing of the peas­ants in areas under his mil­i­tary com­mand.
5.–His theft of pay from the troops under his com­mand.
6.–His army’s total capit­u­la­tion to the Japan­ese when the invaders launched their Oper­a­tion Ichi­go offen­sive of 1944.
7.–General Tang En-po was reward­ed by Chi­ang with the com­mand of 14 KMT divi­sions com­pris­ing the Third Front Army.
8.–His cozy rela­tion­ship with the Japan­ese who sur­ren­dered to his army at the war’s end.

Although the U.S. polit­i­cal leadership—as a whole—were blind to Chiang’s fas­cism, anti-demo­c­ra­t­ic behav­ior and the insti­tu­tion­al­ized cor­rup­tion of his regime, the same was not true of many U.S. fight­ing men.

One of Chiang’s detrac­tors was a cel­e­brat­ed Marine Corps fli­er and mem­ber of Claire Chennault’s Fly­ing Tigers named Gre­go­ry “Pap­py” Boy­ing­ton.

Boy­ing­ton despised Chi­ang, Mme. Chi­ang and was loath to die in a P‑40 for some­one he rec­og­nized as a tyrant.

When the Gen­er­alis­si­mo and Mme. Chi­ang vis­it­ed the base of the Amer­i­can Vol­un­teer Corps (“The Fly­ing Tigers”), Boy­ing­ton and sev­er­al of his fel­low “Tigers” got liquored up and buzzed Chi­ang and wife, forc­ing both to “hit the deck.”

There was a prime-time TV series craft­ed on the tem­plate of Boyington’s Marine Corps squadron called “Ba, Ba Black Sheep” with the late Robert Con­rad play­ing Pap­py Boy­ing­ton.

Among the vehe­ment crit­ics of Chi­ang Kai-shek and Mme. Chi­ang Kai-shek were U.S. fly­ers who had to make the run “Over the Hump”—the dan­ger­ous air sup­ply route that crossed the Himalayas.

(As we have already seen, U.S. Lend Lease mate­r­i­al that was flow through that route into Chi­na was often sold to the Japan­ese ene­my by cor­rupt Kuom­intang offi­cers, politi­cians and Green Gang func­tionar­ies.)

Fly­ing “Over the Hump” caused high casu­al­ties among Army Air Corps fly­ers, and when they dis­cov­ered the lux­u­ry items that Mme. Chi­ang includ­ed in her per­son­al bag­gage, they were out­raged. That out­rage found expres­sion.


FTR#1200 The Narco-Fascism of Chiang Kai-shek and the Kuomintang, Part 7

Con­tin­u­ing our series on the regime of Chi­ang Kai-shek–all but beat­i­fied dur­ing the Cold War–we draw still more on a mag­nif­i­cent book–The Soong Dynasty by Ster­ling Sea­grave. Although sad­ly out of print, the book is still avail­able through used book ser­vices, and we emphat­i­cal­ly encour­age lis­ten­ers to take advan­tage of those and obtain it.

(Mr. Emory gets no mon­ey from said pur­chas­es of the book.)

The pro­gram begins with review of the struc­ture of Chiang’s fas­cist infra­struc­ture, his secret police cadres in par­tic­u­lar.

Key points of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include:

1.–Chiang trans­lat­ed his admi­ra­tion of Hitler and Mus­soli­ni into the most sin­cere form of flattery—imitation: “ . . . . Chi­ang believed that fas­cism stood on three legs—nationalism, absolute faith in the Max­i­mum Leader, and the spar­tan mil­i­ta­riza­tion of the cit­i­zens. The New Life Move­ment [the chief pro­mot­er of which was Madame Chi­ang Kai-shek] was the pop­u­lar man­i­fes­ta­tion of Chiang’s fascism—a toy for his wife and the missionaries—and it was com­ic enough not to be tak­en seri­ous­ly by for­eign­ers in gen­er­al. The mis­sion­ar­ies . . . . were now eager­ly climb­ing aboard the New Life band­wag­on. . . .”
2.–There were three over­lap­ping orga­ni­za­tion­al ele­ments to Chiang’s fas­cist cadres—the Blue Shirts, the CBIS (Cen­tral Bureau of Inves­ti­ga­tion and Sta­tis­tics) which was run by the Ch’en broth­ers and the MBIS (the Mil­i­tary Bureau of Inves­ti­ga­tion and Sta­tis­tics which was run by Tai Li. Both Ch’en broth­ers and Tai Li were Green Gang asso­ciates of Chi­ang Kai-shek: “ . . . . Chiang’s fas­ci­na­tion with Hitler result­ed in the cre­ation of a new secret soci­ety mod­eled on Hitler’s Brown Shirts and Mussolini’s Black Shirts. Chi­ang called his the Blue Shirts, though he denied their exis­tence repeat­ed­ly. They were an off­shoot of his two secret ser­vices, the par­ty gestapo under the Ch’en broth­ers, and the mil­i­tary secret police under Tai Li. . . .”
3.–The CBIS was the Kuomintang’s secret polit­i­cal police: “ . . . . Chi­ang came to depend heav­i­ly on the two nephews of his Green Gang men­tor . . . . Ch’en Ch’i‑mei. The old­er nephew, Ch’en Kuo-fu, who had orga­nized and head­ed the dri­ve that recruit­ed sev­en thou­sand Green Gang youths for the Wham­poa Mil­i­tary Acad­e­my had since then been giv­en the respon­si­bil­i­ty of set­ting up a gestapo orga­ni­za­tion with­in the KMT. As head of the KMT’s Orga­ni­za­tion Depart­ment, his job was to puri­fy the par­ty and the Nanking gov­ern­ment con­tin­u­al­ly. To guar­an­tee the loy­al­ty of each par­ty mem­ber, Ch’en Kuo-fu built a spy net­work that touched every gov­ern­ment agency. To run this new appa­ra­tus, he select­ed his younger broth­er, Ch’en Li-fu [edu­cat­ed at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Pitts­burgh in the U.S.—D.E.]. Both the Ch-en broth­ers were “blood broth­ers” of Chi­ang Kai-shek, hav­ing tak­en part in a Green Gang cer­e­mo­ny after the death of their uncle. . . . Li-fu . . . . became the direc­tor of Chiang’s secret service—the Cen­tral Bureau of Inves­ti­ga­tion and Sta­tis­tics (CBIS), the euphemism cho­sen for the KMT’s polit­i­cal secret police. . . .”
4.–“China’s Himmler”—Tai Li—headed the MBIS: “ . . . . While the CBIS spied, con­duct­ed purges and polit­i­cal exe­cu­tions with­in the par­ty, large-scale pub­lic ter­ror­ism was the province of its mil­i­tary coun­ter­part the Mil­i­tary Bureau of Inves­ti­ga­tion and Sta­tis­tics (MBIS) was run by “China’s Himm­ler,” Tai Li—for twen­ty years the most dread­ed man in Chi­na. . . . Tai Li had spent his youth as a Green Gang aide to Big-eared Tu and was edu­cat­ed at Tu’s per­sona expense. In 1926, he was one of the Green Gang recruits enrolled at Wham­poa Acad­e­my. . . . All clan­des­tine oper­a­tions in Chi­na, except those con­duct­ed by the Ch’ens, were his respon­si­bil­i­ty dur­ing the 1930’s. . . .”
5.–Supplementing and over­lap­ping both CBIS and MBIS were the Blue Shirts: “ . . . . Both of these secret police orga­ni­za­tions were sup­ple­ment­ed by the Blue Shirts. Although it was a repli­ca of the Euro­pean fas­cist cults, the Blue Shirts also emu­lat­ed Japan’s dread­ed Black Drag­on Soci­ety, the most mil­i­tant secret cult of the Impe­r­i­al Army. [The orga­ni­za­tion that helped spawn Kodama Yoshio—D.E.] The Blue Shirts job was to reform Chi­na the hard way, by knock­ing heads togeth­er, car­ry­ing out polit­i­cal assas­si­na­tions, liq­ui­dat­ing cor­rupt bureau­crats and “ene­mies of the state.” . . . . They were offi­cered by old Green Gang class­mates from Wham­poa. . . .”
6.–Exemplifying the homi­ci­dal bru­tal­i­ty of Chiang’s secret police cadres was the liq­ui­da­tion of six of China’s most impor­tant writ­ers: “ . . . . The extreme was soon reached with the hor­rif­ic end of six of China’s fore­most writ­ers, all fol­low­ers of the lead­ing lit­er­ary fig­ure of the [1911] rev­o­lu­tion [led by Dr. Sun Yat-sen], Lu Hsun. . . . He [Chi­ang] ordered his secret police to arrest the writ­ers. Lu Hsun elud­ed arrest but six young lead­ers of the group—including Feng Kung, China’s best-known woman writer—were tak­en into cus­tody and forced to dig a large pit. They were tied hand and foot, thrown into the pit, and buried alive. . . .”

A fun­da­men­tal dynam­ic of Chi­ang Kai-shek’s regime was his stead­fast refusal to use his mil­i­tary forces to fight the invad­ing Japan­ese. (Japan invad­ed Manchuria in 1931 and the Sino-Japan­ese War preceded—and then overlapped—World War II.)

Chi­ang and his forces fre­quent­ly col­lab­o­rat­ed with the Japan­ese and “the Gen­er­alis­si­mo” stead­fast­ly refused to com­mit Kuom­intang armies against them, pre­fer­ring to hus­band his com­bat­ants for use against the Chi­nese Com­mu­nists. (This ide­o­log­i­cal man­i­fes­ta­tion of Chiang’s dic­ta­tor­ship won him favor with the Axis pow­ers, as well as dom­i­nant ele­ments of the Amer­i­can pow­er elite. As will be seen in future pro­grams, Chiang’s stance led to the replace­ment of Gen­er­al Joseph Stil­well with Albert C. Wede­mey­er as chief mil­i­tary advis­er to the KMT.)

Chief among Chiang’s crit­ics was T.V. Soong, who—correctly—forecast that Chiang’s mil­i­tary pos­ture would pro­pel the Chi­nese pop­u­lace into align­ment with the Chi­nese Com­mu­nist Par­ty whose fierce, suc­cess­ful mil­i­tary resis­tance to the Japan­ese was rec­og­nized as man­i­fest patri­o­tism.)

“ . . . . Shak­en by what he had observed of the Japan­ese assault, T.V. Soong began to draw some dan­ger­ous con­clu­sions. ‘If Chi­na is placed before the alter­na­tive of com­mu­nism and Japan­ese mil­i­tarism with its mil­i­tary dom­i­na­tion, then Chi­na will choose com­mu­nism.’ This rather dar­ing state­ment, giv­en dur­ing an inter­view with Karl H. von Wie­gand in March, 1932, placed T.V. in direct oppo­si­tion to Chi­ang Kai-shek. It was all the more icon­o­clas­tic for being made by a rich financier and Finance Min­is­ter. . . .”

T.V. Soong—in that same interview—noted that the West­ern pow­ers had pas­sive­ly col­lab­o­rat­ed with the Japan­ese attacks on Manchuria and Shang­hai: “ . . . . ‘The League [of Nations—D.E.] and the big pow­ers looked on. They even per­mit­ted the Inter­na­tion­al Set­tle­ment to be used as a base of oper­a­tions. Can you be sur­prised that Chi­na would turn to Com­mu­nism or Sovi­etism, if that were to unite the coun­try, rather than sub­mit to for­eign mil­i­tary dom­i­na­tion?’ . . . .”

We con­clude with dis­cus­sion of a major event in the his­to­ry of Chi­ang Kai-shek’s con­ser­va­tion of his mil­i­tary resources to fight the Communists–what has become known as the Sian inci­dent.

 The Sian Inci­dent was very important—though lit­tle recognized—event in the his­to­ry of Chi­na: the “kid­nap­ping” of Chi­ang Kai-shek by Kuom­intang mil­i­tary offi­cers who were intent on form­ing an anti-Japan­ese coali­tion called for by Madame Sun Yat-Sen (Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s wid­ow and the for­mer Ching-ling Soong.)

This became known as the Sian inci­dent, named after the locale in which Chi­ang was tak­en into cus­tody and held.

Inspired by the suc­cess of Mao Tse-Tung’s forces in fight­ing the Japan­ese, a mass stu­dent protest move­ment pre­cip­i­tat­ed the call by Mme. Sun Yat-sen, which was put into action by “The Young Mar­shal,” Chang Hsueh-liang. He was sup­port­ed in this by the forces of Gen­er­al Yang Hu-cheng.  “ . . . . Mean­while, Mao Tse-Tung’s Com­mu­nist forces reached Yenan at the end of the Long March, and began ral­ly­ing anti-Japan­ese nation­al­ism to their side. To many stu­dents, the authen­tic hero­ism of the Red Army com­bined with this blunt stand against Tokyo was a siren call. On Decem­ber 9, 1935, ten thou­sand Peking stu­dents demon­strat­ed against Japan. The protest drew nation­wide atten­tion and Madame Sun Yat-sen emerged from seclu­sion in Shang­hai to sup­port the stu­dents by launch­ing a Nation­al Sal­va­tion League. . . .”

Key points of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include:

1.–The Young Marshal’s return to Chi­na after kick­ing nar­cotics admin­is­tered to him Tai-li’s secret police (this dur­ing a recu­per­a­tive sojourn in Europe): “ . . . . When the Young Mar­shal returned to Chi­na in 1934„ he was trans­formed. Gone were the nar­cotics, and in their place was a tough new nation­al­ism. He decid­ed that China’s sal­va­tion lay in per­suad­ing Chi­ang to stand firm against Tokyo. He had long talks with T.V. Soong in Shang­hai about how to engi­neer this, and T. V., who must have real­ized that a pow­er­ful mil­i­tary lever had fall­en into his hands, burned the mid­night oil with the dap­per Manchuri­an gen­er­al, explor­ing all pos­si­ble maneu­vers against Chi­ang . . . .”
2.–“ . . . . Ear­ly in 1936, the Young Mar­shal qui­et­ly instruct­ed his troops on the fron­tier to stop shoot­ing at red guer­ril­las. He had reached the con­clu­sion that most of China’s Com­mu­nists were dri­ven into the arms of the CCP by the degra­da­tion of the coun­try at the hands of Chi­ang and the for­eign pow­ers. Chi­nese, he decid­ed, should no longer fight Chi­nese while the nation was being rav­ished by for­eign invaders. . . .”
3.–The Young Mar­shal then met, and reached agree­ment with Chou En-Lai, lat­er the For­eign Min­is­ter of Chi­na under Mao Tse-tung. “ . . . . That June, he met pri­vate­ly with Chou En-Lai to see if they could put aside dif­fer­ences and devel­op a joint strat­e­gy. He came away with his con­vic­tion reaf­firmed that the answer lay in a unit­ed front He was good to his word. All mil­i­tary action halt­ed, liai­son was set up between their two head­quar­ters, and bureaus of the Nation­al Sal­va­tion League were orga­nized through­out north­west­ern Chi­na. . . . Word of this ‘treach­ery’ reached Chi­ang Kai-shek at Nanking. . . .”
4.–Chiang refused to join the nation­al­ist coali­tion: “ . . . . When the Gen­er­alis­si­mo arrived, the Young Mar­shal told Chi­ang that his anti-red cam­paign that his anti-red cam­paign should be scrapped and a unit­ed front formed with Mao Tse-Tung. The time had come for a patri­ot­ic war, not a civ­il war. Chi­ang hot­ly reject­ed the argu­ment . . . .”
Chi­ang pub­li­cized his deter­mi­na­tion to con­tin­ue with his anti-com­mu­nist anni­hi­la­tion cam­paign: “ . . . . On Decem­ber 4, 1936, the Gen­er­alis­si­mo returned to Sian to announce that he was going ahead with the anni­hi­la­tion cam­paign, to begin on Decem­ber 12. . . .”
5.–In com­bi­na­tion with Gen­er­al Yang, the Young Mar­shal decid­ed to take Chi­ang hostage and extract his con­sent to a nation­al­ist coali­tion: “ . . . . At 5:30 in the morn­ing of Decem­ber 12—the day the new anni­hi­la­tion cam­paign was to begin—Chiang Kai-shek was star­ing out the back win­dow of his bed­room at the moun­tain beyond the gar­den wall. In the dark­ness, four trucks loaded with 120 armed sol­diers rum­bled to a halt at the gates. The bat­tal­ion com­man­der in the lead truck demand­ed that the gates be opened. The sen­tries refused. The men in the trucks opened fire. . . .”
6.–Despite being tak­en cap­tive, Chi­ang refused to form a nation­al­ist coali­tion: “ . . . . At Sian, Chi­ang stub­born­ly resist­ed the Eight Demands. ‘He refused to turn our guns against the ene­my,’ the Young Mar­shal explained in a pub­lic address to a huge crowd in a Sian park on Decem­ber 16, ‘but reserved the for use against our own peo­ple.’ . . .”
7.–Eventually, Chi­ang grudg­ing­ly agreed to the coali­tion, appar­ent­ly after T.V. Soong saw to it that Chi­ang got a sig­nif­i­cant amount of mon­ey. “ . . . . The Young Mar­shal gal­lant­ly accept­ed all blame for the Sian Inci­dent, allow­ing Chi­ang to wash his hands in pub­lic and wipe them on him. (Inter­est­ing­ly he was put up at T.V. Soong’s home in Nanking.) He had done Chi­na a his­toric ser­vice by bring­ing about the long-sought unit­ed front, what­ev­er its lat­er fail­ings. . . .”
7.–Chiang’s reluc­tant agree­ment was trum­pet­ed by Hen­ry Luce: “ . . . . He put them [Chi­ang and Mme. Chi­ang] on the cov­er of Time’s first issue of 1938 as ‘Man and Wife of the Year.’ May-ling Soong Chi­ang now became an even big­ger inter­na­tion­al celebri­ty. . . .”
8.–As was his wont, Chi­ang broke his promise to the Young Mar­shal and Gen­er­al Yang. Laud­ed by Hen­ry Luce and his asso­ciates as an Exem­plary Chris­t­ian, Chi­ang promised an amnesty on Good Friday—a promise he prompt­ly broke. “ . . . . In his Good Fri­day mes­sage to Chi­na that spring of 1937, Chi­ang referred to the Sian Inci­dent and said pious­ly, ‘Remem­ber­ing that Christ enjoined us to for­give those who sin against us until sev­en­ty times sev­en and upon their repen­tance, I felt that that they should be allowed to start life anew. . . .”
9.–Similar treat­ment was afford­ed Gen­er­al Yang: “ . . . . The Young Marshal’s co-con­spir­a­tor, Gen­er­al Yang, despite the Good Fri­day amnesty, was impris­oned when he came back from Euro­pean exile and lan­guished for eleven years in one of Tai Li’s spe­cial deten­tion camps near Chungk­ing. His wife went on a hunger strike in protest and was allowed to starve her­self to death. . . .”


FTR#1199 The Narco-Fascism of Chiang Kai-shek and the Kuomintang, Part 6

In this pro­gram we con­tin­ue our analy­sis and his­tor­i­cal dis­cus­sion of Chi­ang Kai-shek’s nar­co-fas­cist gov­ern­ment.

Encap­su­lat­ing the nature of Chi­ang Kai-shek’s regime and the pub­lic rela­tions per­son­ae con­struct­ed for it by the Soong fam­i­ly, Ster­ling Sea­grave appro­pri­ate­ly describes it as a “Tro­jan horse.” ” . . . . . . . . The Nanking gov­ern­ment was quite sim­ply a Tro­jan horse, paint­ed in bright col­ors by the Soong clan [and Hen­ry Luce—D.E.]. In its bel­ly were hid­den the gen­er­als, secret police­men, and Green Gang who actu­al­ly wield­ed pow­er in Chi­na.  It was skill­ful­ly done, and one of T.V.’s major accom­plish­ments. Amer­i­cans, more so than oth­er West­ern­ers, were tak­en in. . . .”

Lion­ized as a suc­cess­ful tycoon and giant of inter­na­tion­al finance and com­merce, T.V. Soong (who also served as Finance Min­is­ter and oth­er cab­i­net posts for Chi­ang Kai-shek) was deeply involved with the Green Gang/Kuomintang nar­co-fas­cist oper­a­tion: “. . . . Shang­hai police reports indi­cate that in 1930, T.V. Soong per­son­al­ly arranged with Tu to deliv­er 700 cas­es of Per­sian opi­um to Shang­hai under KMT mil­i­tary pro­tec­tion to sup­ple­ment deplet­ed Chi­nese stocks. All par­ties involved in set­ting up the ship­ment and pro­tect­ing it dur­ing transit—including T.V.—received fees. . . .”

Amer­i­can pub­lish­ing giant Hen­ry Luce of Time, Inc. was the son of Amer­i­can mis­sion­ar­ies in Chi­na, where he spent much of his youth.

His posi­tion toward Chi­na might be said to embody “the Mis­sion­ary Posi­tion.”

A doc­tri­naire fas­cist him­self, he saw the busi­ness tycoon as an Amer­i­can iter­a­tion of the fas­cist strong­man, exem­pli­fied by his idol Ben­i­to Mus­soli­ni.

Luce’s por­tray­al of Chi­ang Kai-shek, Mme. Chi­ang and their regime are utter­ly fan­tas­tic in nature, bear­ing no rela­tion what­so­ev­er to the real­i­ty of the Kuom­intang. Luce’s por­tray­al could be said to have set the tem­plate for cov­er­age of Chiang’s regime in the U.S.

As we con­tem­plate the cov­er­age of con­tem­po­rary Chi­na in this coun­try, it is worth recall­ing the depth of decep­tion in which our jour­nal­ists have indulged.

Key points of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include:

1.–The influ­ence of Hen­ry Luce’s mis­sion­ary par­ent­ing in Chi­na on his per­spec­tive on Chi­ang: “ . . . . ‘The trou­ble with Har­ry,’ observed the writer Lau­ra Z. Hob­son, wife of one of his class­mates at Yale, ‘is that he’s torn between want­i­ng to be a Chi­nese mis­sion­ary like his par­ents and a Chi­nese war­lord like Chi­ang Kai-shek.’ . . . .”
2.–Luce com­pro­mised: “ . . . . he could do the next best thing—he could adopt the Soongs and make Chi­ang over into a mis­sion­ary-war­lord. . . .”
3.–“ . . . . By the spring of 1933, when T.V. was ready to vis­it Amer­i­ca, Luce was rapid­ly becom­ing the world’s most pow­er­ful pub­lish­er. With him [Luce] to take care of their pub­lic rela­tions and image build­ing in Amer­i­ca, the Soongs, Chi­angs and Kungs were in for a sen­sa­tion­al ride. . . .”
4.–For Luce, T.V. Soong’s pro­fes­sion­al busi­ness per­sona man­i­fest­ed in the same man­ner as the fas­cist strong­men he idol­ized. “. . . . The busi­ness tycoon, Luce believed, was America’s answer to the need for fas­cism. . . . He found jus­tice in the sur­vival of the fittest, and saw quite clear­ly that a soci­ety build on greed was more dynam­ic than one based on char­i­ty. . . . ‘The moral force of Fas­cism,’ Luce pro­nounced, ‘appear­ing in total­ly dif­fer­ent forms in dif­fer­ent nations, may be the inspi­ra­tion for the next gen­er­al march of mankind.’. . .”
5.–For Luce, there­fore, T.V. Soong served the same func­tion as Mus­soli­ni: “. . . . Luce char­ac­ter­ized T.V. as a car­toon super-tycoon. Luce had a soft spot for super­heroes that enabled him prac­ti­cal­ly to ven­er­ate Chi­ang Kai-shek. ‘The hero-wor­ship­per in him,’ said his biog­ra­ph­er W.A. Swan­berg, ‘respond­ed to the Fas­cist super­man who could inspire the alle­giance and coop­er­a­tion of the mass­es. . . . He point­ed to the suc­cess of Mus­soli­ni in revi­tal­iz­ing the aris­to­crat­ic prin­ci­ple in Italy, ‘a state reborn by virtue of Fas­cist sym­bols, Fas­cist rank and hence Fas­cist enter­prise.’ . . . . Luce admired strong regimes in which the ‘best peo­ple’ ruled for the good of all . . . . In Mus­soli­ni, he saw such great­ness and in Fas­cism, such dra­mat­ic polit­i­cal inno­va­tions that he could not con­tain his excite­ment. . . .’”

Next, we exam­ine the sor­did, Machi­avel­lian, klep­to­crat­ic nature of the Soong fam­i­ly.

Key points of dis­cus­sion and analy­sis include:

1.–H.Kung (Chiang’s Finance Min­is­ter at the time and the broth­er-in-law of T.V. Soong) and his finan­cial coup‑d’etat, real­iz­ing a takeover of much of China’s finan­cial infra­struc­ture and the banks com­pris­ing it. He did so in col­lab­o­ra­tion with T.V. Soong, his wife (the for­mer Ai-ling Soong) and Green Gang king­pin Tu Yueh-sheng.
2.–The bank­ing coup was rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the dizzy­ing cor­rup­tion with which the Chiang/Tu/Soong axis dom­i­nat­ed the Chi­nese econ­o­my: “ . . . . The Bank of China’s new board [of direc­tors] was elect­ed on March 30. Among the new direc­tors were T.V. Soong, [his broth­er] T.L. Soong, and Big Eared Tu [Yueh-sheng]. When the Bank of Com­mu­ni­ca­tions held its first meet­ing after the coup, T.L. Soong was on its board. Both T.V. and T. L. acquired seats on the board of the Cen­tral Bank. The Bank coup of March [1935] was fol­lowed by the method­i­cal sub­ver­sion of three oth­er impor­tant Shang­hai com­mer­cial banks that June. . . . All three banks were placed under the super­vi­sion of H.H. Kung’s Man­u­fac­tur­ers’ Bank, on the board of which sat T.L. Soong, T.A. Soong, and T.V. Soong. Big-eared Tu became the new chair­man of the board of the Com­mer­cial Bank. . . . The list went on and on, as bank after bank, then com­pa­ny after com­pa­ny, came under con­trol of the clan. . . .”
3.–In addi­tion to T.V. Soong’s younger broth­ers T.L. and T.A., the Green Gang hier­ar­chy com­prised anoth­er, vital com­po­nent of the Kuom­intang eco­nom­ic axis: “ . . . . L. was also the head of the Wham­poo Con­ser­van­cy Board with juris­dic­tion over Shang­hai har­bor, which was dom­i­nat­ed by the Green Gang. Every­thing that hap­pened on the water­front was the busi­ness of Big-eared Tu’s man Ku Tsu-chuan. . . . Although it was not wide­ly known, and cer­tain­ly not talked about, this water­front gang­ster was the old­er broth­er of one of Gen­er­alis­si­mo Chi­ang Kai-shek’s senior mil­i­tary officers—General Ku Chu‑t’ung, who even­tu­al­ly rose to be chief of the gen­er­al staff and, because of the New Fourth Army Inci­dent, one of the most hat­ed men in Chi­na. (We will say more about this top­ic lat­er. It was high­light­ed in FTR#1142.) . . . .”

Hav­ing been born in 1949, I grew up with World War II as a crit­i­cal ele­ment of my polit­i­cal, civic and cog­ni­tive upbring­ing. I vivid­ly remem­ber watch­ing the doc­u­men­tary “Vic­to­ry at Sea” on tele­vi­sion as a child. As I have grown old­er, more knowl­edge­able and wis­er, learn­ing the truth about World War II has been very sad and painful.

In FTR #1095, we not­ed the his­tor­i­cal back­ground to the ongo­ing con­flict with China–the bru­tal Japan­ese onslaught and the col­lab­o­ra­tion of Chi­ang Kai-shek’s Kuom­intang nar­co-dic­ta­tor­ship with Japan’s attack and occu­pa­tion.

As a boy, I was awed and moved by the hero­ism of Amer­i­can and Allied ser­vice per­son­nel who braved the dan­gers of fly­ing over the Hump to bring U.S. sup­plies to Chi­ang Kai-shek’s forces. Although offi­cial­ly allied with the U.S., Chi­ang Kai-shek’s forces were actu­al­ly work­ing “both sides of the street.”

We have encoun­tered noth­ing more grotesque­ly trag­ic and dis­il­lu­sion­ing than the aware­ness that Amer­i­can mil­i­tary sup­plies flown over the Hump and/or sent along the Bur­ma Road found their way into the hands of the Japan­ese, cour­tesy of KMT gen­er­al Ku Chu-tung and his orga­nized crime broth­er.

Col­lab­o­rat­ing with Kodama Yoshio, the Japan­ese crime boss and Admi­ral of the Impe­r­i­al Japan­ese Navy, the broth­ers swapped U.S. lend lease sup­plies for drugs.

In the pas­sage below, it is impor­tant to note the role of the Black Drag­on Soci­ety in the ascent of Kodama Yoshio. Black Drag­on, along with Black Ocean, are key Japan­ese ultra-nation­al­ist soci­eties and the appar­ent fore­run­ners of the Uni­fi­ca­tion Church and, pos­si­bly the over­lap­ping Shin­cheon­ji cult.

Kodama played a key role in the Uni­fi­ca­tion Church, as dis­cussed in FTR #‘s 291  and 970.

. . . . He [Kodama] was sprung from jail by [Gen­er­al] Doi­hara in April 1937, on the con­di­tion that he devot­ed his vio­lent ener­gies to loot­ing Chi­na’s under­world. This epiphany, the trans­for­ma­tion of Kodama from thug to super-patri­ot, was sug­gest­ed by Black Drag­on’s Toya­ma [Mit­su­ru], whose own stature as a patri­ot was affirmed in 1924 when he was a guest at Emper­or Hiro­hi­to’s wed­ding. . . .

. . . . All pro­ceeds were divert­ed from Chi­nese rack­e­teers to Gold­en Lily, minus a han­dling charge for Kodama him­self. Ulti­mate­ly, Kodama was respon­si­ble to Prince Chichibu, and to the throne.

Princes were not equipped to deal with gang­sters. Kodama saved them from soil­ing their hands. He con­vert­ed nar­cotics into bul­lion by the sim­ple method of trad­ing hero­in to gang­sters for gold ingots. How bro­kers got the ingots was not his con­cern. He closed a deal with water­front boss Ku Tsu-chuan to swap hero­in for gold through­out the Yangtze Val­ley. Thanks to Ku’s broth­er, KMT senior gen­er­al Ku Chu-tung, Japan also gained access to U.S. Lend-Lease sup­plies reach­ing west­ern Chi­na by way of the Bur­ma road, or on air­craft fly­ing over the Hump from India. Once in ware­hous­es in Kun­ming or Chungk­ing, the Lend-Lease was re-sold to the Japan­ese Army, with Kodama as pur­chas­ing agent. . . .

T.L. Soong—T.V.’s younger broth­er: “ . . . . who had been in charge of Lend Lease dur­ing World II, and whose Amer­i­can roots were in New York City, became some­thing of an enig­ma. Sources in Wash­ing­ton said T.L. worked as a secret con­sul­tant to the Trea­sury Depart­ment in the 1950’s, engaged in what they would not say. Trea­sury claims it has no record of a T.L. Soong what­ev­er. . . .”

Next, we high­light the cen­tral role of Ger­man gen­er­al Hans Von Seeckt in Chi­ang Kai-shek’s mil­i­tary cam­paign against the Chi­nese Com­mu­nists.

Key points of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include:

1.–“ . . . . The mil­i­tary cam­paign . . . . was engi­neered for Chi­ang Kai-shek by one of the best-known strate­gists of Nazi Germany—General Hans von Seeckt. When Hitler came to pow­er in 1933, Chi­ang asked for mil­i­tary help. Hitler sent von Seeckt and Lieu­tenant Gen­er­al Georg Wet­zell. The Generalissimo’s deter­mi­na­tion to fight Com­mu­nists, rather than Japan­ese, was to Hitler’s lik­ing. . . .”
2.–Unsurprisingly, the von Seeckt-engi­neered cam­paign was a slaugh­ter: “ . . . . [not­ed jour­nal­ist] Edgar Snow said the Com­mu­nists suf­fered 60,000 casu­al­ties, and that in all a mil­lion peo­ple were killed or starved to death. Of that mil­lion dead, there­fore, at least 940,000 were not ‘Com­mu­nist ban­dits.’ . . . .”

Chi­ang Kai-shek’s regime net­worked exten­sive­ly with the fas­cist dic­ta­tor­ships of Europe. Com­mer­cial net­work­ing between Hitler, Mus­soli­ni and Chi­ang involved Kuom­intang Finance Min­is­ter H.H. Kung and his wife, the for­mer Ai-ling Soong.

Key points of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include: 

1.–” . . . . The Kungs then sailed to Europe and the most impor­tant part of their trip, the boom­ing Ger­man arms indus­try. H.H. arranged to pur­chase $25 mil­lion U.S. in weapons from Ger­many. Then, since fas­cism was fash­ion­able, and his broth­er-in-law [Chi­ang Kai-shek] was one of its lead­ing expo­nents, H. H. decid­ed to vis­it Mus­soli­ni . . .”
2.–The Kungs’ mis­sion to Italy was suc­cess­ful: “ . . . . When H.H. arrived, he cut a deal where­by the $2 mil­lion U.S. bal­ance of Box­er [Rebel­lion] indem­ni­ties still owed to Italy would be used to buy Fiat war planes. Mus­soli­ni left it to his hand­some, swarthy son-in-law, count Ciano, his Min­is­ter to Chi­na, to arrange the details. Ital­ian assis­tance to the infant Chi­nese air force was expand­ed to include a school to train pilots at Loyang and a Fiat air­craft assem­bly plant in Nan­chang. . . .”
3.–Chiang’s tac­tic of using his mil­i­tary to fight the Chi­nese Com­mu­nists instead of the Japan­ese was viewed favor­ably by the Axis—Nazi Ger­many, Fas­cist Italy and Impe­r­i­al Japan. Not even T.V. Soong could influ­ence Chi­ang to change strat­e­gy, one which Soong felt—correctly–would dri­ve the Chi­nese peo­ple into the arms of the Com­mu­nists. (Chiang’s anti-Com­mu­nism was a major sell­ing point used to cul­ti­vate sup­port in the U.S.: “ . . . . While T.V. Soong was try­ing to per­suade Chi­ang to for­get the Chi­nese Com­mu­nists and defend Chi­na against Japan­ese aggres­sion, the Japan­ese, Ger­mans, and Ital­ians were all encour­ag­ing Chi­ang to love Japan and kill reds. . . .”
4.–Chiang’s fas­cist infat­u­a­tion with Hitler’s Ger­many influ­enced his dis­patch­ing of his son to join the Wehrma­cht: “ . . . . The Gen­er­alis­si­mo dai­ly became more enam­ored of the Nazi mil­i­tary and police state. Even­tu­al­ly, he sent his younger son, Wei-kuo, to be schooled by the Nazis. . . . (Wei-kuo became a sec­ond lieu­tenant in the 98th Jaeger Reg­i­ment and before return­ing to Chi­na took part in the inva­sion of Aus­tria in 1938. . . .)

The pro­gram con­cludes by set­ting forth the struc­ture of Chiang’s fas­cist infra­struc­ture, his secret police cadres in par­tic­u­lar.

Key points of analy­sis and dis­cus­sion include:

1.–Chiang trans­lat­ed his admi­ra­tion of Hitler and Mus­soli­ni into the most sin­cere form of flattery—imitation: “ . . . . Chi­ang believed that fas­cism stood on three legs—nationalism, absolute faith in the Max­i­mum Leader, and the spar­tan mil­i­ta­riza­tion of the cit­i­zens. The New Life Move­ment [the chief pro­mot­er of which was Madame Chi­ang Kai-shek] was the pop­u­lar man­i­fes­ta­tion of Chiang’s fascism—a toy for his wife and the missionaries—and it was com­ic enough not to be tak­en seri­ous­ly by for­eign­ers in gen­er­al. The mis­sion­ar­ies . . . . were now eager­ly climb­ing aboard the New Life band­wag­on. . . .”
2.–There were three over­lap­ping orga­ni­za­tion­al ele­ments to Chiang’s fas­cist cadres—the Blue Shirts, the CBIS (Cen­tral Bureau of Inves­ti­ga­tion and Sta­tis­tics) which was run by the Ch’en broth­ers and the MBIS (the Mil­i­tary Bureau of Inves­ti­ga­tion and Sta­tis­tics which was run by Tai Li. Both Ch’en broth­ers and Tai Li were Green Gang asso­ciates of Chi­ang Kai-shek: “ . . . . Chiang’s fas­ci­na­tion with Hitler result­ed in the cre­ation of a new secret soci­ety mod­eled on Hitler’s Brown Shirts and Mussolini’s Black Shirts. Chi­ang called his the Blue Shirts, though he denied their exis­tence repeat­ed­ly. They were an off­shoot of his two secret ser­vices, the par­ty gestapo under the Ch’en broth­ers, and the mil­i­tary secret police under Tai Li. . . .”
3.–The CBIS was the Kuomintang’s secret polit­i­cal police: “ . . . . Chi­ang came to depend heav­i­ly on the two nephews of his Green Gang men­tor . . . . Ch’en Ch’i‑mei. The old­er nephew, Ch’en Kuo-fu, who had orga­nized and head­ed the dri­ve that recruit­ed sev­en thou­sand Green Gang youths for the Wham­poa Mil­i­tary Acad­e­my had since then been giv­en the respon­si­bil­i­ty of set­ting up a gestapo orga­ni­za­tion with­in the KMT. As head of the KMT’s Orga­ni­za­tion Depart­ment, his job was to puri­fy the par­ty and the Nanking gov­ern­ment con­tin­u­al­ly. To guar­an­tee the loy­al­ty of each par­ty mem­ber, Ch’en Kuo-fu built a spy net­work that touched every gov­ern­ment agency. To run this new appa­ra­tus, he select­ed his younger broth­er, Ch’en Li-fu [edu­cat­ed at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Pitts­burgh in the U.S.—D.E.]. Both the Ch-en broth­ers were “blood broth­ers” of Chi­ang Kai-shek, hav­ing tak­en part in a Green Gang cer­e­mo­ny after the death of their uncle. . . . Li-fu . . . . became the direc­tor of Chiang’s secret service—the Cen­tral Bureau of Inves­ti­ga­tion and Sta­tis­tics (CBIS), the euphemism cho­sen for the KMT’s polit­i­cal secret police. . . .”
4.–“China’s Himmler”—Tai Li—headed the MBIS: “ . . . . While the CBIS spied, con­duct­ed purges and polit­i­cal exe­cu­tions with­in the par­ty, large-scale pub­lic ter­ror­ism was the province of its mil­i­tary coun­ter­part the Mil­i­tary Bureau of Inves­ti­ga­tion and Sta­tis­tics (MBIS) was run by “China’s Himm­ler,” Tai Li—for twen­ty years the most dread­ed man in Chi­na. . . . Tai Li had spent his youth as a Green Gang aide to Big-eared Tu and was edu­cat­ed at Tu’s per­sona expense. In 1926, he was one of the Green Gang recruits enrolled at Wham­poa Acad­e­my. . . . All clan­des­tine oper­a­tions in Chi­na, except those con­duct­ed by the Ch’ens, were his respon­si­bil­i­ty dur­ing the 1930’s. . . .”
5.–Supplementing and over­lap­ping both CBIS and MBIS were the Blue Shirts: “ . . . . Both of these secret police orga­ni­za­tions were sup­ple­ment­ed by the Blue Shirts. Although it was a repli­ca of the Euro­pean fas­cist cults, the Blue Shirts also emu­lat­ed Japan’s dread­ed Black Drag­on Soci­ety, the most mil­i­tant secret cult of the Impe­r­i­al Army. [The orga­ni­za­tion that helped spawn Kodama Yoshio—D.E.] The Blue Shirts job was to reform Chi­na the hard way, by knock­ing heads togeth­er, car­ry­ing out polit­i­cal assas­si­na­tions, liq­ui­dat­ing cor­rupt bureau­crats and ‘ene­mies of the state.’ . . . . They were offi­cered by old Green Gang class­mates from Wham­poa. . . .”
6.–Exemplifying the homi­ci­dal bru­tal­i­ty of Chiang’s secret police cadres was the liq­ui­da­tion of six of China’s most impor­tant writ­ers: “ . . . . The extreme was soon reached with the hor­rif­ic end of six of China’s fore­most writ­ers, all fol­low­ers of the lead­ing lit­er­ary fig­ure of the [1911] rev­o­lu­tion [led by Dr. Sun Yat-sen], Lu Hsun. . . . He [Chi­ang] ordered his secret police to arrest the writ­ers. Lu Hsun elud­ed arrest but six young lead­ers of the group—including Feng Kung, China’s best-known woman writer—were tak­en into cus­tody and forced to dig a large pit. They were tied hand and foot, thrown into the pit, and buried alive. . . .”