China's WWI Effort Draws New Attention





World War One drew in people from around the world, including 140,000 Chinese workers who served on the Western Front. A new museum exhibition in Flanders, Belgium, highlights China's role in the war. It appears the curators have had to cancel plans to take it to China.

The little known story of the 140,000 Chinese who served on the Western Front during WWI has drawn new interest in recent years.

The Toiling for War exhibition at the In Flanders Fields Museum in Ypres, Belgium, is the first to detail the pivotal Chinese involvement in the conflict....

Xu Guoqi is a professor of history at the University of Hong Kong. His book, Strangers on the Western Front: Chinese Workers in the Great War, will be published this year. He says that sending as Chinese laborers to the front was a brilliant strategy to link China with the West.

And he underscores the link between the war and the founding of China's Communist Party. During the war, the young interpreters drew up education plans in spare moments away from the dangerous toil on the battlefields. As a result nearly two-thirds of the laborers returned home able to read. He says that effort inspired the men who went on to lead the Communist Party....



comments powered by Disqus

Subscribe to our mailing list