White Russians in Warlord Armies

Quite a few Warlords employed White Russian refugees to fight, and their combat experience was put to good use. Chang t'sung-ch'ang, the 'Dog Meat General', was one of the main recruiters of White Russians, with up to 4,600 in his army. He used them to crew armoured trains, which were a major weapon in the Warlord's armoury. Chang also had a so-called 'foreign legion' made up of 700 White Russians, 300 Japanese and two Chinese companies. The Manchurian Warlord Chang Tso-lin also used White Russians and had a unit known as the Mukden Lancers in his army. They wore a special uniform in dark green with yellow leather boots and were armed with a lance, a Mauser pistol and a beheading sword. Apart from elite units such as this, most White Russians wore the same uniform as their Chinese comrades.

Chinese With Mauser Pistol

Nationalist General Tsai Ting-kai, hero of Shanghai in 1932. He and his 19th Army valiantly defended the city against the Japanese, and he became a national hero. He wears the standard Nationalist officer's uniform, with his collar insignia of three triangles for general. His field cap carries the usual sun emblem of the Nationalists. (Gene Christian)

Nationalist General Tsai Ting-kai, hero of Shanghai in 1932. He and his 19th Army valiantly defended the city against the Japanese, and he became a national hero. He wears the standard Nationalist officer's uniform, with his collar insignia of three triangles for general. His field cap carries the usual sun emblem of the Nationalists. (Gene Christian)

Battle Shanghai 1932

TOP Nationalist soldiers in trenches near Shanghai in 1932 prepare to fight off the Japanese invaders. All wear the peaked cap worn by northern Nationalist troops and have blanket rolls over their shoulders. Their rifles are the Hanyang 88 copy of the German Mauser 88, produced in China in large numbers. (Fusiliers' Museum, Lancashire)

ABOVE More Nationalist troops shoot from behind a barricade in the city of Shanghai in March 1932, when they desperately fought off the Japanese. These men belong to the 19th Route Army, which shocked the world by beating off the Japanese. The peaked cap with Nationalist sun emblem is again worn and the rifles are Hanyang 88s. (Fusiliers' Museum, Lancashire)

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