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Joe Stilwell comments

I have just finished reading the Stilwell Papers. General Joseph Stilwell was an officer in the USA army, and spent many years in China. His nickname was Vinegar Joe, because of his blunt way of speaking. The book is composed of extracts from his diaries for the period 1941 to 1944. A very interesting read, and the following, written in 1944, really caught my eye:

(I have) faith in Chinese soldiers and Chinese people: fundamentally great, democratic, misgoverned. No bars or caste or religion ….. Honest, frugal, industrious, cheerful, independent, tolerant, friendly, courteous.

I judge Kuomintang and Kungchantang (Communist Party) by what I saw: 

(KMT) Corruption, neglect, chaos, economy, taxes, words and deeds. Hoarding, black market, trading with enemy. 

Communist program … reduce taxes, rents, interest. Raised production, and stands of living. Participate government. Practice what they preach.

The fact that was written by someone who was a believer in the American Dream, and certainly had no time for communism, shows the respect he had for what the communists were doing for the people of China.

Dave Adamson


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