Episode 94 – The Dragon and the Rising Sun, Part 4

This week we look at the Second Sino-Japanese War from the opposite angle: not those who fought, but those who collaborated. We’ll discuss the titular leader of Manchukuo and the head of the “reformed” Chinese regime with an eye towards shedding some light on who collaborated and why.

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Aisin-Gioro, Puyi. From Emperor to Citizen: The Autobiography of Aisin-Gioro Pu-yi.

Duara, Prasenjit. Sovereignty and Authenticity: Manchukuo and the East Asian Modern.

Drea, Edward. Japan’s Imperial Army: Its Rise and Fall, 1854-1945.

Mitter, Rana. Forgotten Ally: China’s World War II, 1937-1945.

Mitter, Rana. The Manchurian Myth.

Images

Puyi sits next to his father Zaifeng, Prince Chun. Circa 1909.
Puyi sits next to his father Zaifeng, Prince Chun. Circa 1909.
Puyi in 1922, during his "house arrest" in Beijing.
Puyi in 1922, during his “house arrest” in Beijing.
Pu Yi as Emperor of Manchukuo, c. 1940. The military uniform is reminiscent of the one the Showa Emperor (Hirohito) would wear during public appearances.
Pu Yi as Emperor of Manchukuo, c. 1940. The military uniform is reminiscent of the one the Showa Emperor (Hirohito) would wear during public appearances.
After the end of the war, Puyi was captured by the Soviet Union, which would later hand him over to China. After a decade of imprisonment, he was pardoned, reformed, and ultimately ended up joining the Communist Party.
After the end of the war, Puyi was captured by the Soviet Union, which would later hand him over to China. After a decade of imprisonment, he was pardoned, reformed, and ultimately ended up joining the Communist Party.
Wang Jingwei (left) with Chiang Kaishek, c. early 1930s. After Chiang came out on top in the battle for the control of the Guomindang, the two men maintained a cordial but frosty relationship which would ultimately collapse during the war with Japan.
Wang Jingwei (left) with Chiang Kaishek, c. early 1930s. After Chiang came out on top in the battle for the control of the Guomindang, the two men maintained a cordial but frosty relationship which would ultimately collapse during the war with Japan.
Wang Jingwei as President of the "Reformed" Republic of China. The banner behind him says "The Revolutionary Wang Jingwei."
Wang Jingwei as President of the “Reformed” Republic of China. The banner behind him says “The Revolutionary Wang Jingwei.”
Wang Jingwei greets Nazi diplomats on an official state visit, 1941.
Wang Jingwei greets Nazi diplomats on an official state visit, 1941.
Wang Jingwei (center) looks on as Subhas Chandra Bose and Hideki Tojo meet for the first time.
Wang Jingwei (center) looks on as Subhas Chandra Bose and Hideki Tojo meet for the first time.
The Greater East Asia Conference ,1943. From Left to Right: Ba Maw (Burma) Zhang Jinghui (Manchukuo) Wang Jingwei (China) Hideki Tojo (Japan) Wan Waithayakon (Thailand) Jose P. Laurel (The Philippines) Subhas Chandra Bose (India)
The Greater East Asia Conference ,1943. From Left to Right:
Ba Maw (Burma)
Zhang Jinghui (Manchukuo)
Wang Jingwei (China)
Hideki Tojo (Japan)
Wan Waithayakon (Thailand)
Jose P. Laurel (The Philippines)
Subhas Chandra Bose (India)

Episode 93 – The Dragon and the Rising Sun, Part 3

This week we introduce the man who led China’s war against Japan: Chiang Kai-shek. The reluctant military leader wanted no part of a war against the nation where he had trained, but the trends of the time forced him into a conflict that would eventually destroy not only Japan, but his own regime as well.

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Drea, Edward. Japan’s Imperial Army: Its Rise and Fall, 1853-1945.

Jansen, Marius. The Making of Modern Japan.

Mitter, Rana. Forgotten Ally: China’s World War II, 1937-1945.

Images

General Chiang Kai-shek, leader of the Chinese Nationalists (Guomindang) during the war against Japan.
General Chiang Kai-shek, leader of the Chinese Nationalists (Guomindang) during the war against Japan.
Chinese soldiers durign the defense of Shanghai in 1937. Note the German Stahlhelm-type helmets; at this point, German influence in the Nationalist army was very strong, and Chiang continued to work for assistance from the Nazis against Japan.
Chinese soldiers durign the defense of Shanghai in 1937. Note the German Stahlhelm-type helmets; at this point, German influence in the Nationalist army was very strong, and Chiang continued to work for assistance from the Nazis against Japan.
Chiang Kai-shek and Mao Zedong. The alliance between these two men served to temporarily halt China's ongoing civil war in the name of national unity, but the end of the fighting brought a rapid breakdown of their relationship. This photo is from the final full year of that alliance in September, 1945.
Chiang Kai-shek and Mao Zedong. The alliance between these two men served to temporarily halt China’s ongoing civil war in the name of national unity, but the end of the fighting brought a rapid breakdown of their relationship. This photo is from the final full year of that alliance in September, 1945.
Though the war in China stalled out strategically in only a few years, that did not mean that massive suffering did not continue. Air raids on the Chinese wartime capitol of Chongqing were constant; these civilians were casualties of one of those raids.
Though the war in China stalled out strategically in only a few years, that did not mean that massive suffering did not continue. Air raids on the Chinese wartime capitol of Chongqing were constant; these civilians were casualties of one of those raids.
Dai Li, Chiang Kai-shek's secretive spymaster.
Dai Li, Chiang Kai-shek’s secretive spymaster.
The Surrender Ceremony at Nanjing by Chen Jian. This image is actually very exaggerated; the real ceremony was not so grand, but perhaps this vision better describes the momentousness of the occasion in the Chinese consciousness.
The Surrender Ceremony at Nanjing by Chen Jian. This image is actually very exaggerated; the real ceremony was not so grand, but perhaps this vision better describes the momentousness of the occasion in the Chinese consciousness.
The actual surrender ceremony in Nanjing. Not quite as impressive as the painting.
The actual surrender ceremony in Nanjing. Not quite as impressive as the painting.

Episode 92 – The Dragon and the Rising Sun, Part 2

This week, we turn to the life of the father of modern China: Dr. Sun Yat-sen. How did he help turn China from an empire into a modern nation-state, and how did his paths cross with Japanese allies and enemies along the way?

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Drea, Edward. Japan’s Imperial Army: Its Rise and Fall, 1853-1945.

Lary, Diana. China’s Republic.

Miyazaki, Toten. My Thirty-Three Years’ Dream: The Autobiography of Miyazaki Toten.

Schiffrin, Harold Z. Sun Yat-sen and the Origins of the Chinese Revolution.

Images (Courtesy of the Wikimedia Foundation)

Sun Yat-sen, the father of modern China.
Sun Yat-sen, the father of modern China.
Sun Yat-sen with Japanese and Chinese allies. Sun is seated on the far right; his confidant Miyazaki Toten stands in the center.
Sun Yat-sen with Japanese and Chinese allies. Sun is seated on the far right; his confidant Miyazaki Toten stands in the center.
Sun Yat-sen at a meeting of Chinese revolutionaries in Tokyo in 1898. The attendees are: (front row from left) Tasunaga Tonosuke, Yang Quyun, Hirayama Shu, Suenaga Takashi, Uchida Ryohei; (back row from left) Kani Choichi, Koyama Yutaro, Miyazaki Toten, Sun Yat-sen, Kiyofugi Koshichiro, Ohara Yoshitaka.
Sun Yat-sen at a meeting of Chinese revolutionaries in Tokyo in 1898. The attendees are: (front row from left) Tasunaga Tonosuke, Yang Quyun, Hirayama Shu, Suenaga Takashi, Uchida Ryohei; (back row from left) Kani Choichi, Koyama Yutaro, Miyazaki Toten, Sun Yat-sen, Kiyofugi Koshichiro, Ohara Yoshitaka.
Sun Yat-sen at a meeting of Tongmenghui sympathizers in Singapore.
Sun Yat-sen at a meeting of Tongmenghui sympathizers in Singapore.
Yuan Shikai negotiated the abdication of the Qing emperors, but then turned around and betrayed Sun's revolution for a shot to make himself an emperor. He would fail and died in 1916 as the country slipped into civil war.
Yuan Shikai negotiated the abdication of the Qing emperors, but then turned around and betrayed Sun’s revolution for a shot to make himself an emperor. He would fail and died in 1916 as the country slipped into civil war.
From 1912 to 1928 this was the flag of the Republic of China. The five colors represent the unity of the five major ethnic groups in China -- Han, Manchu, Mongol, Hui (Chinese Muslims), and Tibetans.
From 1912 to 1928 this was the flag of the Republic of China. The five colors represent the unity of the five major ethnic groups in China — Han, Manchu, Mongol, Hui (Chinese Muslims), and Tibetans.
Chiang Kai-shek with Sun Yat-sen (seated) in Guangdong in 1924.
Chiang Kai-shek with Sun Yat-sen (seated) in Guangdong in 1924.
Zhongshan-ling, the mausoleum of Sun Yat-sen in modern Nanjing next to (and modeled on) the tombs of the Ming Emperors. I've climbed (part of) those stairs -- they're every bit as tortuous as they look.
Zhongshan-ling, the mausoleum of Sun Yat-sen in modern Nanjing next to (and modeled on) the tombs of the Ming Emperors. I’ve climbed (part of) those stairs — they’re every bit as tortuous as they look.
The white sun on a blue background (shown here incorporated into the post-1928 flag of the Republic of China) is the symbol of Sun's party, the Guomindang.
The white sun on a blue background (shown here incorporated into the post-1928 flag of the Republic of China) is the symbol of Sun’s party, the Guomindang.
Sun Yat-sen and Miyazaki Toten, still together today (at least, in the courtyard of the Nanjing Museum of Modern History).
Sun Yat-sen and Miyazaki Toten, still together today (at least, in the courtyard of the Nanjing Museum of Modern History).