Теократический Монархист (ign) wrote,
Теократический Монархист

Сун Мэйлин, “Democracy Reaps the Whirlwind” (1940, декабрь)

В связи с последними событиями в Китае и Гонконге, хочу предложить ознакомиться со статьёй бывшей «первой леди» Китая, Сун Мэйлин, написанной в разгар Китайско-японской войны и почти ровно за год до нападения Японии на Перл-Харбор. В интернете этой статье, по-видимому, нет, я отсканировал ее из одного из старых номеров Liberty.

Не знаю, многие ли сегодня помнят Сун Мэйлин, но это легендарная личность; она, между прочим, родилась в 19 веке, а умерла сравнительно недавно, уже в 21-м. Жена того самого Чан Кайши, она и сама немало занималась политикой и, как считается, имело большое влияние сначала в Китае, и позднее в Тайване.

Этот взгляд в события почти 80-летней давности интересен со многих точек зрения; и как взгляд в альтернативную историю, где Китай мог бы быть крупнейшей демократической страной; и как один из многих эпизодов умиротворения агрессора (Японии) уже после начала 2-й мировой войны; и как сравнение тогдашней политики западных стран и СССР.

The continued willingness of the democracies to regard Japan as an equal, to shake the bloodstained hands of her ambassadors, to court her trade emissaries, while lodging futile and empty face-saving protests which did not save any one’s face, presented an astonishing spectacle to the Chinese people, and encouraged the Japanese to laugh up their sleeves while they flouted the protests.

Статья целиком под катом.

There is nothing like a great conflagration to clear the way for large-scale city improvement, and there is perhaps nothing like a war such as we in China have been waging in self-defense to prepare the way for a far-reaching remolding of our national character in particular and our national life in general.

The fires of war have burned into our soul—and blazoned upon the sky for all who have eyes to see—some startling revelations and unexpected changes. Political disunity disappeared in a flash before Japanese aggression. More important, the physical and moral cowardice which was supposed to be born and bred in our bones and blood faded as if by magic. Instead of ancient China falling prostrate and groveling before the Japanese invaders, China’s ill-armed people, unsupported by other nations, stood on their feet in stalwart defiance, and were mowed down in their millions by the most ferocious and inhumane type of warfare that had ever been let loose upon human beings.

The Japanese invented and applied the “total” warfare now known as “blitzkrieg.” But, for three long years and more, the Chinese people have shown the world how to face and endure it. Truly a miracle, if ever a miracle has, in contemporary times, been chronicled. And if one miracle is possible, why not another?

This thought has led me to make an attempt to stimulate my compatriots to reform by laying bare certain evils within our country which became inherent solely because they were of benefit to the old-time official class, and have been tolerated up to this period because no one cared publicly to condemn them. What I should not like to see is that foreign readers of translations of my writings should gain the impression that I hold our people solely responsible for all that is wrong with China, or imply that what is right with China is due solely to foreign influence. Far from it.

Occidental science, technique, and learning of all kinds have conferred great benefits upon China. We have still much more to draw from the founts of foreign knowledge. But my countrymen probably would not agree, after these three tragic years of unrestrained desolation of their land, that much that is good or wise could be learned from the equivocal evolution, as they have witnessed it, of foreign policy. In fact, some rather strong views upon that subject are being entertained, and, since I have been free in pillorying the pet peccadilloes of our people for foreign edification, they consider it incumbent upon me to express their feelings and reactions with regard, at least, to the value of foreign promises and performances in the field of international politics.

Democratic statesmen have fallen far short of that lofty ideal of honorable recognition and fulfillment of obligations that has been set up before our people. Treaties, agreements, and understandings have gone with the wind of self-interest, and, so far as we of China are concerned, we have been virtually abandoned, and even victimized, by those in high authority whom we had been taught we could regard with unshaken confidence as our friends. To our people it is unutterably sad that for three weary, heartbreaking years of heroic resistance we have been left without help to combat a savage aggressor in a war which is not ours alone but which is that of all democracies.

It is painful to have to say that my countrymen, rightly or wrongly, have been forced by their terrible experiences to a conclusion derogatory to respect for the democracies. The people of China are convinced that the warfare now cleaving Europe and shocking the whole world is directly due to failure of the democracies to appraise correctly the character and intentions of Japan.

It is the opinion of the Chinese people, too, that the negative attitude of the democracies toward Japanese aggression in China constituted a violation of treaties and international undertakings which was as reprehensible and as disastrous to international honor and good faith as the positive abrogations and acts of violence of which Japan was guilty when she invaded Manchuria in September, 1931, and China proper in July, 1937.

Japan’s easy conquest of Manchuria by unscrupulous means was but an example of how an aggressor could safely kick irksome principles into limbo and survive unscathed to enjoy not only the possession of the “conquered” territory, but also the continued political, economic, and social good will and friendship of those democratic nations which were originally the most vociferous in their denunciation of the aggression. Japan had tested international reactions to undeclared warfare, to the wholesale abrogation of treaties; and she found them empty of danger—–either immediate or remote.

What other encouragement did the militarists of Japan require to set about tackling China? None. When her plans were perfected for further outrage she expanded the “Manchurian Incident” into the “North China Incident,” and that, in turn, into the “China Incident.” Soon it promises to assume the stature of an “Asia Incident.”

When Japan invaded Manchuria we refrained from resisting because the League of Nations undertook to adjust matters. They lost the region for us. There was a difference, however, when the Japanese proceeded to invade China proper. Then we abandoned faith in international undertakings, and we fought. For more than three years now Japan has been gouging with ferocious intensity at the very vitals of our country. She set the example for the wholesale slaughter and destruction now running riot in Europe—–an example that might never have materialized had the democracies only fulfilled their obligations to China by restraining Japan. Penalization of Japan would have nipped aggression in the bud. The pity of it is that up to now there has been no actual punishment, nor has there been any rebuke for her impertinences, her trespasses upon the rights of the democracies, or her bellicose bluffing. Without any appreciable aid from the democracies, which professed to be horrified, the people of China have suffered hardships such as no other race on earth has ever been called upon to endure. We have survived the ordeal; and, contrary to all preconceived ideas entertained by foreigners claiming expert knowledge of China, we have succeeded in inflicting punishment in full measure upon the Japanese, and in bogging down their colossal military machine in our vast hinterland.

For those three years, however, the Chinese people saw the professed defenders of international law and order failing to come to our aid or even to support our cause openly. We know the explanation, the excuse—–that no one was ready to fight. Nor were we; but we fought. Think what would have been the situation in the world today had we refrained from defending ourselves, had we surrendered.

Those nations who were expected to employ every means in their power to defend right against might have made it abundantly clear to the Chinese people that they would not openly help to defend anything—–in Asia. On the contrary, they seemed to be striving to avoid difficulties by obeying the dictates of Japan. The American government ordered airplanes, bought by China before the opening of hostilities, to be removed from an American steamer then at a port on the West Coast of the United States; the Australian government refused to permit even the parts of a private passenger airplane to be assembled in Sydney and flown to China. But both countries eagerly supplied war materials to Japan. The British and French governments were meticulous in avoiding actions calculated to give umbrage to Japan. The British government refused to allow British military or air experts to aid China; the American government threatened its technical instructors working with the Chinese Air Force with loss of citizenship. A similar fate was to befall any American who volunteered to fight in the air for China. Yet quite a contrary policy was pursued with regard to the war in Spain.

All this our people had before their eyes while they saw their homes be¬ing blown to pieces and their fellow beings slaughtered, robbed, impoverished, or made victims of opium.

The continued willingness of the democracies to regard Japan as an equal, to shake the bloodstained hands of her ambassadors, to court her trade emissaries, while lodging futile and empty face-saving protests which did not save any one’s face, presented an astonishing spectacle to the Chinese people, and encouraged the Japanese to laugh up their sleeves while they flouted the protests. It was no wonder to our people that Japan refused any longer to respect or fear the democracies.

France capitulated to Japan’s pressure, and the route of supplies through Indo-China was closed with the suddenness of a pinpricked balloon; Great Britain vainly attempted to appease Japan by the temporary closing of the Burma Road. And America? It was three years before America did so much (although now she has recently done somewhat more) as to place a controlling hand upon the sale to Japan of scrap steel and aviation gasoline; and even that was done with the cautious explanation that this measure was adopted merely for the sake of self-defense, and was not necessarily aimed specially at Japan.

This has led the Chinese people to think that America could not in any wise explain away her attitude of the past three years, for it must be remembered that while impartial, justice-loving Americans did try to do all they could to point out the significance of China’s struggle and aid China in relief work, others in America amassed profits by selling to Japan the necessities of warfare. Eighty per cent of Japan’s war supplies came from America—–and 95 per cent of the aviation gasoline which was used by Japan in her ruthless bombing was American.

China has thus been compelled to fight a war not of her own making with a Power which has been aided and abetted unstintingly by the markets of the democracies. These markets were virtually closed to us, for no help was given us to avail ourselves of them. China has been the champion of the principles for which other democracies are now at war, but mention of what China has been able to do for the cause is seldom if ever made–—an amazing situation.

If China has done nothing else, she has at least crippled the might of Japan so that Japan cannot swiftly fulfill the program long ago revealed in the notorious Tanaka Memorial for securing the hegemony of Asia and the domination of the whole Pacific. With her army, her air force, and her navy intact, and with no such millstone round her neck as a tenacious and resisting China, Japan would have been able with consummate ease to destroy British, French, and American power in Asia.

Our people feel that America, instead of giving any further assistance to Japan, should fully recognize the debt she owes to them for keeping occupied in China 3,000,000 men of the Japanese army, including those killed and wounded, thus giving America time to catch her breath and strengthen her defenses. That it has been recognized by the democracies so tardily and honored so incompletely is causing our people to feel more and more that, if China’s rights and contributions continue to be ignored, China will be forced in the future so to conduct herself that the democratic governments may know that if she could get along without them in the turmoil of war, she can get along without them in the less perilous times of peace.

This would be a regrettable attitude for China to be constrained to adopt, since it has always been felt by intelligent Chinese that the destiny of their country lies with the democracies. I have personally expressed that conviction time and again.

It should be pointed out, however, that the trend of thought of our people toward a revision of their ideas of the value of association with the democracies is not the product of momentary fancy, nor has it been molded in any way by the startling and unexpected events in Europe. Whatever change of thought may take place will be born of the realization of democratic inadequacy in defending proclaimed principles; plus the studied refusal to treat Japan as an aggressor; plus the apparently considered refusal to credit China with her unprecedented contribution to democratic stability and defense; plus the absence of free and fair acknowledgement of her help, of her great and grievous sacrifices in fight-ing aggression and thus upholding democratic principles.

This list of delinquencies of the democracies cannot in any way be ascribed to that spurious wisdom which often comes after the maturity of an event. Space does not allow me to quote the many warnings I have uttered during the past three years with regard to the serious consequences of the indifference of the democracies to happenings in China. That these Cassandran prophecies have come true is no more gratifying to us in China than it must be to the democracies who have sown the wind and are now reaping the remorseless whirlwind.

Intellectual honesty constrains me to point out that throughout the first three years of resistance Soviet Russia extended to China, for the actual purchase of war materials and other necessities, credits several times larger in amount than the credits given by either Great Britain or America. Both these countries, indeed, circumscribed their advances with conditions which prevented even one cent of the money being used for badly needed munitions, equipment, or war material of any kind. Furthermore, at the meetings of the League of Nations, it was Russia who took an uncompromising stand in support of China’s appeal that active measures should be adopted to brand Japan as the aggressor. Russia acted similarly during the Brussels Conference. On both occasions Britain, France, and other member nations compromised their consciences. When Japan protested through her ambassador in Moscow that the aid extended to China by Russia was a breach of neutrality, Russia did not wilt, or surrender, or compromise, but continued to send supplies of arms to China.

It will doubtless be said that Russia has been aiding China for selfish interests. In reply to this I may point out that Russian help has been unconditional; that China has never asked any nation to fight for her. And, I may add, if democracy is to survive the policy of “One for one and all for none,” statesmanlike foresight should see that it is replaced with the policy of “One for all, and all for one.”

What has happened, however—–and what has not happened—–is another great lesson to the Chinese people, another bitter lesson that they will never forget. They will remember never to believe in international promises, no matter how many imposing seals adorn the documents.

One thing they have been taught is that China must aim, in her future national development, at attaining self-reliance. She will have to devise means so that for all time she will not need to depend upon others. I have been trying to emphasize this idea in the training of my students, so that they might have competency and be capable of facing life with¬out fear. If the war should end tomorrow, a firm foundation on this score can be erected by any one who is not afraid of hard work.

What the future holds no one can tell, of course. If, unhappily for the democracies as well as for China, we should be defeated in the end, at least the world ought to know that we were beaten not because of lack of courage —-- either moral or physical --— but because China was strangled to death by an economic noose fashioned by Japan out of British appeasement, American profiteering, and French fear.

The spirit of China is unconquerable. Whatever happens, we will prove our valor and our honor. An old-fashioned word–—honor, yet a word of sterling worth. It has suffered an eclipse, or a partial eclipse, in international relationship for some years, but we hope to see it emerge again shining like a lustrous beacon.

To all the citizens of the democracies who have given their time, their substance, and their sympathy to succor and encourage the millions of stricken ones in our country, goes out the abiding gratitude of all the Chinese people.

See copy at dreamwidth for more comments; currently it has comment count unavailable.
Tags: история, китай

  • Сегодня можно

    Я обещал в своём посте по итогам трамповского четырёхлетия, что как минимум в этом дневнике не будет сравнений каких-то актуальных событий с…

  • Mad King

    Сегодня мы попытаемся, как я уже обещал раньше, подвести что-то вроде итогов Трамповских 4-х лет. Я долго писал этот текст, переписывал,…

  • Немного статистики

    В преддверии смены власти в Вашингтоне, я собрал воедино несколько графиков и иллюстрации, показывающих, где мы сейчас находимся. При этом, моей…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.