Chiang Kai-shek a.k.a. Jiang Jiehi

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Chiang Kai-shek a.k.a. Jiang Jiehi

Chiang Kai-shek /

Chiang Kai-shek /

This Chinese general and statesman was born in 1887. He assumed control of the Chinese government (Kuomintang) in 1926, and led a far from pacific Northern Expedition from 1926 to 1928. He is said to have been ruthless in suppressing trade union and communist organisations, and actually shoved the communists out of the Kuomintang.

He established the national government in Nanjing in 1928, which lasted until 1937, and then succeeded in what was considered an impossible task – the unification of all China, or most of it. He improved education and communications, and expedited major financial reforms.

Chiang Kai-shek believed in Confucian values, and supported the ‘New Life’ movement from 1934 to 1937. He was eager to combat communist ideas or ideology. His government established an almost permanent war with the warlords, who maintained the fighting communists in their rural land bases; he also fought the encroaching Japanese. This did not prevent him from being kidnapped in 1936 in what was named ‘The Xi’an Incident’, but he was released, having agreed to co-operate with the communists (much to their surprise) in fighting the invading Japanese. In this he was supported by the USA, and encouraged by his wife.

He led nationalist forces in China from 1937 to the end of the Second World War, but failed to control most coastal regions, and lost most of the principal cities to Japan during the wars. Conversations with Mao Tse Tung (Mao Zedong) patently did not provide a basis for agreement in 1945 after the US nuclear attack on Japan, and the Chinese Civil War started, finished in 1949 with Chiang’s resignation as President and evacuation to the island of Taiwan.

Though few people could understand how, Chiang stayed with his ‘Republic of China’ on Taiwan, as President, although the island was under constant threat from Communist China – until his death in 1975. Taiwan is still there however, and China has emerged as a ‘democratic’ state dominsted by communist rules.

By | 2011-10-30T09:16:39+00:00 October 30th, 2011|World History|7 Comments

About the Author:

‘Dean Swift’ is a pen name: the author has been a soldier; he has worked in sales, TV, the making of films, as a teacher of English and history and a journalist. He is married with three grown-up children. They live in Spain.


  1. c .m .lam May 17, 2012 at 1:37 pm - Reply

    the photo above, i have doubt its Chiang kai shek in his younger days..please check.

  2. Dean Swift May 22, 2012 at 5:53 pm - Reply

    c.n.1am, the photo of Chiang Kai Shek when young came, as do all my illustrations, from Google Images. This source is as accurate as anybody on the Internet, and I have seen this particular pic in a biography of the man concerned.
    Thanks anyway,

    • Don Lynch July 9, 2012 at 8:27 pm - Reply

      Re: Richard/May 24 2012. Richard is 100% correct. Chiang Wei Kuo is the object of the photo. You will note he is dressed in a German Army uniform; CKS never served in the German Army. Wei Kuo was a fellow lodge member of mine in Taipei, Taiwan with the Taipei Bodies of the Masonic Scottish Rite and I knew him well. Also, there is a misspelling of the English spelling CKS name; the correct spelling is Chiang Jie Shi. Please recheck your sources and correct your posting.
      Sincerely, Don Lynch.

      • Dean Swift July 17, 2012 at 7:18 am - Reply

        I did not personally know either of the Chinese gentlemen, therefore have no means of checking to see if Images have got it right. I repeat that my source informs me the caption is correct. Please do not treat me as if I were your pupil. Good manners are the most important things in this life. Pomposity is a waste of time and energy.

      • Dean Swift July 18, 2012 at 3:48 pm - Reply

        Now let’s see. Some years ago the politically correct, because they had nothing better to do, decided to change the spelling in English of oriental names in Mandarin, Japanese etc. The versions used for centuries (Shanghai, Peking, Chiang-kai-Shek etc.) became redundant, though they were but versions of their originals of the SOUND produced in the original language. Thus we had to accept barbarisms such as ‘Beijing’ and so on. Neither the Chinese nor the Japanese could actually give a fuck. They have their own, correct sounds in their own, correct languages. Inventions by liberal European or North American changists do not interest, or exercise them. No-one in India, for instance, is bothered if I write ‘Bombay’ instead of ‘Mumbay’. It is only frustrated intellectuals in Cambridge or other centres of ‘change for the sake of change’ who are incensed by such indifferent nonsenses. A grite deel of lerve from Deen Swift.

      • Dean Swift July 28, 2012 at 4:28 pm - Reply

        Of course, of course. The photo has been changed. What is Scottish Masonry?

  3. Richard May 24, 2012 at 1:44 am - Reply

    This is not Chiang kai Shek, it’s his son Chiang Wei-kuo when he was in Military Academy in Germany before WWII. He trained as a Panzer commander, and was recalled to China in 1938 where he was made a Major in the fight against first the Communists, then the Japanese. He moved to Taiwan in 1949 at the defeat of mainland Republic troops by Soviet backed Mao. You can probably find Wei-kuo’s bio on Wikipedia. but if not there’ll be other sources.

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