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Mao Zedong and his three American friends

CPC Encyclopedia

"All reactionaries are paper tigers."

- Mao Zedong told Anna Louise Strong in 1946

Mao Zedong and his three American friends

Anna Louise Strong was born in Friend, Nebraska, US on Nov 24, 1885. In 1908, she earned her PhD in philosophy from the University of Chicago.

Anna made her first trip to China in Oct 1925, during which she visited Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, and met with Feng Yuxiang, Soong Qing-ling and other famous figures. In June of 1927, she visited China for the second time, and she witnessed the failure of the KMT-CPC cooperation.

After the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression broke out, Anna made a 10-day trip to the anti-Japanese base areas in January 1938, during which she interviewed several high-ranking military officers including Zhu De, Liu Bocheng, He Long and others.

On July 6, 1946, she flied to Shanghai and began her fifth trip to China. In an interview with Mao Zedong in Yan'an on Aug 6, she had the chance to listen to Mao's famous thesis "all reactionaries are paper tigers". In January 1948, upon the invitation of the national conference on American policy towards China, she made a keynote speech on "the realities in China". Afterwards, she made speeches on several occasions to appeal to the American government to change its policy of supporting Chiang Kai-shek. In December, her new book "Dawn Comes Up Like Thunder Out of China: An Intimate Account of the Liberated Areas in China" was published. It was a book themed on her visit to Yan'an.

In early 1958, she visited new China upon the invitation of the Chinese government. On Oct 1, she was invited to mount the Tian'anmen Rostrum on the National Day to attend the rally in celebration of the 9th anniversary of the founding of new China, and Mao Zedong cordially received her on the rostrum.

In February 1962, she established the journal "Letters from China", through which she told American people and the people of the rest of the world about what she heard and saw in new China in the form of letters. The journal published 69 issues until she passed away.

On March 29, 1970, Anna died in Beijing. [more]