L is for … Leaders

China has just changed its leadership team, at the 18th Party Congress in Beijing. The photograph below, a favourite of ours, shows three Premiers in waiting, and the widow of one just deceased.

Revolutionaries at Canton, possibly during the Second National Conference of the Guomindang, 1st January1926, Fu Bingchang collection, fu-n086.

Here we have Wang Jingwei (second left); Chiang Kai-shek (fourth left); Mikhail Borodin (fifth left); Song Ziwen (sixth left waring cap); Eugene Chen (Chen Youren) (third right); He Xiangning (second right); Song Qingling (Madame Sun Yat-sen).  Sun Yat-sen and Chiang both served as President of the Republic of China, while Wang, Chiang and Song Ziwen all served as Premier. During the Sino-Iapanese war Wang also served from from 1940 until his death in 1944 as head of state of the pro-Japanese, collaborationist regime. From 1949 until 1968 Song Qingling served as a Vice-President in the People’s Republic. Unluckiest of all of these was Comintern agent Mikhail Borodin, who died in a Soviet prison camp in 1951 after being found guilty of a trumped up charge of espionage.

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