is to us a question of life and death. We must help China along the lines
of the awakening of Asia. Chiang Kai-shek, the head of the Central
Government is realising that to fight against Japan is racial suicide and
he and his party, the Kuomintang, are coming back to the old principle of
Sun Yat Sen, the principle of ‘Asia for the Asiatics’.”
statement was made to me by one of the most influential Japanese in
foreign affairs as he described to me Japan’s need for co-operation with
China. "Japan needed to develop, in peace, China’s vast
declared. "But China must stop the boycott against our goods."
children are educated by the Government in Nanking to boycott our products
and to hate Japan. The Chinese commercial guilds are boycotting
Japanese goods. All that must cease if we are really to co-operate
with China.” The great questions in the Far East today are:
Japan and China become friends?
China be dominated by Japanese influence?
China produce the raw materials for Japan’s factories and receive
textiles in return?
called on an important Chinese resident in Japan. Having read of the
warm welcome given to the Japanese official visitors to Nanking and having
studied Gen. Chiang Kai-shek’s plea for co-operation with Japan, I
expected to find in my Chinese host a supporter of a régime of friendship
between the two Asiatic nations. It was with surprise that I noticed
the indignation of the Chinese at the mention of co-operation.
“How can there be co-operation?” he shouted angrily. “We Chinese hate
the Japanese more than ever. Do you think that we have forgiven the
Rape of Manchuria? As long as our territory remains in the hands of our
enemies no friendship with them can be sincere.”
the Japanese could help you to fight against the Communist menace?”
replied: “They wanted to send their military advisers to help us to
fight against the Communists. We do not want their military
advisers. We know their plans. We realise that if the
Communists consolidate their position in Szechuan it will be very hard to
dislodge them, because the country is like Switzerland and is hard to
attack. Nevertheless, we refuse Japanese aid, because once we have
Japanese officers and men in the middle of China they will be as difficult
to dislodge as the communists in the north-west.
is the Japanese army’s policy? Are they really behind the Foreign
Minister, Hirota, wanting co-operation with. China?” I asked.
Chinese laughed. “The Japanese Army is very pessimistic about
co-operation with China. They are not really behind Hirota.
They think they will let him try out this co-operation policy, and if that
fails they’ll conquer North China.
the Army wants is to possess the areas north of the Yangtse. They
went Pu Yi or Emperor Kang Té as they call him, to go to Peking which,
being absolutely defenseless, could be taken one day. The Japanese
would say that they were helping the Manchus to regain their rightful
would be a costly policy,” I said. “Would it be worth it?
It would antagonise China, lead to further boycotts, and there would be
internal revolts in North China for the Japanese to suppress. Surely
the Japanese would be too wise for such a policy?”
course, it would be a foolish policy,” replied the Chinese, “but the
Japanese military are, in a mad mood. They think they can do
Japanese have asked you to stop boycotting their goods. Do you not
think that reasonable?” was my next question.
is impudence on the part of the Japanese, a young upstart nation, to
command the Chinese with, our thousands of years of history. We
resent the Japanese saying: “You must stop the boycott; you must do
this, you must do that.” We have quite as much right to say ‘Buy
Chinese’ as you have to says ‘Buy British.’ Moreover, we want
to have our own industries and not have our manufacturers crushed by
Chinese calmed down and suddenly smiled. “We have something to
thank Japan for, and it is this. China is being united by hatred of
Japan. If Japan had not aroused our hatred and thus moulded our
country into one we would not have put aside internal bickering and have
conquered, the Communists in that important, province of Kiangsi.”
the bitterness of the Chinese is so great against the Japanese, the course
of co-operation between the two nations will not run smoothly, and “Asia
for the Asiatics” will long remain an empty dream.