Quotations: Jiang Jieshi and nationalist China

This page contains a collection of Chinese Revolution quotations about Jiang Jieshi and nationalist China, made by prominent leaders, figures, observers and historians. These quotations have been selected and compiled by Alpha History authors. If you would like to suggest a quotation for these pages, please contact Alpha History.

“For 40 years I have devoted myself to the cause of the people’s revolution with but one end in view: the elevation of China to a position of freedom and equality among the nations… To attain this goal, we must bring about a thorough awakening of our own people and ally ourselves in a common struggle with those peoples of the world who treat us on the basis of equality. The work of the Revolution is not yet done.”
Sun Yixian, writing shortly before his death, March 1925

“Our Master [Sun Yixian] thought that to accommodate the communists was one of the principles of our revolution. I also think that the revolutionary front will not be united if we do not accommodate the communists.”
Jiang Jieshi

“Only after it [the Shanghai Massacre] was all over did I learn of [the CCP’s] plan to seize me on board the Chungshan, when I was to travel back to the Huangpo Military Academy. They would then send me as a prisoner to Russia via Vladivostok, thereby removing the major obstacle to their scheme of… setting up a ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’.”
Jiang Jieshi, reflecting on the Shanghai Massacre of April 1927

“Jiang Jieshi is found guilty of massacre of the people and oppression of the Party. Whereas he deliberately engages himself in revolutionary acts, and his crimes and outrages are so obvious, the Central Executive Committee has adopted a resolution that Jiang be expelled from the [Guomindang] party and dismissed from all his posts.”
A resolution of the Wuhan Guomindang faction, 1927

“The Japanese are a disease of the skin; the communists are a disease of the heart.”
Jiang Jieshi, 1932

“I will never talk about it [fighting the Japanese] until every Red soldier in China is exterminated and every Communist is in prison.”
Attributed to Jiang Jieshi at Xi’an, December 1936

“After the war the question of the Chinese communists will have to be settled by military force. But the Soviet Union is different. We cannot negotiate with the Chinese communists because the same words have different meanings to us and them. But we can rely on Stalin: he keeps his word.”
Jiang Jieshi, 1943

“Although he [Jiang Jieshi] is the acknowledged leader of China, he has no record of personal military achievement and his basic ideas of political leadership are those of a warlord.”
Brooks Atkinson, US journalist, 1944

“[Jiang shows a] loss of realistic flexibility and a hardening of narrowly conservative views. His growing megalomania and his unfortunate attempts to be ‘sage’ as well as leader have forfeited the respect of many intellectuals… Criticism of his dictatorship is becoming more outspoken.”
John S. Service, US diplomat, 1944

“Sewage piled up in the gutters and smelled. Mosquitoes bred in the stagnant pools of water deep in the ruins and malaria flourished. Dysentery grew worse, so did cholera, rashes and a repulsive assortment of internal parasites… Rats grew fat… and the press reported that they killed babies in their cribs.
Theodore H. White, US journalist, on conditions in Chongqing, 1946

“[Jiang Jieshi is] a little depressing, a little ridiculous, at all times contradictory and sometimes tragic… an atrocious strategist, a bad organiser and a worse administrator… unstable… treacherous… vain and touchy to the point of hysteria.”
Jack Belden, US journalist, 1949

“Jiang Jieshi was a sincere patriot, preeminently concerned with the interests of his country and his people. He knew very little about modern military strategy… but he knew a great deal about the political art of holding his people to the job at hand. He was skilful at playing one person against others.”
Albert C. Wedemeyer, commander of US forces in China, 1944-45


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