The Consul General at Hankow (Josselyn) to the Secretary of State

No. 480

Sir: With reference to the Department’s instruction of February 10, 1938,42 concerning the submittal of information relating to the Communist Party of China, I have the honor to enclose a translation of an editorial43 on China’s foreign policy, appearing in the Hsin Hua Jih Pao, an official daily publication of the Chinese Communist Party.

[Page 247]

This editorial is believed to be the outgrowth of an acrimonious dispute during the last session of the People’s Political Council, which convocation met from July 5 to July 15, 1938.

The dispute arose when one of the delegates, Mr. Li Shen-wu, an editor of the Commercial Press and a member of the clique led by Mr. Wang Ching-wei, General Chang Chun, and General Ho Ying-ch’in, recommended that China take steps to come to an understanding with Germany and Italy. Wang Ming, formerly Chinese member of the Communist International, hotly replied that Germany and Italy were allies of Japan and that any rapprochement with them would lead to capitulation to the Japanese. The Soviet Union, Wang Ming declared, is the natural ally of China.

Li Shen-wu and those delegates of similar persuasion thereupon demanded of Wang Ming, “Are you a Chinese or a Russian?” A scuffle was avoided only by the intercession of more temperate elements and the appeal of the Chairman, Dr. Chang Po-ling, to remember the United Front.

The enclosed editorial carries Wang Ming’s, and of course the Chinese Communist Party’s, foreign policy platform to the public. The program is the alignment of China with the democracies and the Soviet Union and opposition to Japan, Germany and Italy, who are classified as “aggressors”.

The alliance of Germany and Italy with Japan is motivated, the Communists contend, by (1) a desire to make use of Japanese aid in prosecuting military adventures in Europe, (2) on Germany’s part, a wish to secure through joint action with Japan colonies in the South Pacific, (3) the need for assistance from the east in a combined attack on the Soviet Union, and (4) a hope that out of the Japanese invasion of China they may secure a share of the benefit. Because of the close understanding and association which Germany and Italy have with Japan, the Chinese communists consider those two European states as enemies of China. Therefore, any proposal of a rapprochement with Germany and Italy is viewed as a betrayal of China, through Germany and Italy, to Japan.

The ability of the democratic powers to take common action is conceded by the editorial to be weaker than that of the aggressor bloc. An advance, however, is professed to be noticeable, in joint restraint of aggression on the part of the democracies.

It is in the Soviet Union that the Chinese Communist Party places its greatest reliance for assistance to China’s cause. Only through alliance with the Soviet Union and through its assistance, the editorial maintains, can China maintain its place in international affairs and continue the struggle in the war of resistance.

Respectfully yours,

P. R. Josselyn
  1. Ante, p. 78.
  2. Not printed.