The forgotten army of the first world war: how Chinese labourers helped shape Europe

The forgotten army of the first world war: how Chinese labourers helped shape Europe.

An article in The Guardian this morning (First world war’s forgotten Chinese Labour Corps to get recognition at last) reminded me of this much better piece on the South China Morning Post about the contribution of Chinese labourers on the Western Front during World War One.

But just as Europe has forgotten about the Chinese Labour Corps, so too has China, it seems. Although the country did enter the war late in the day (1917), there’s been no mention of the centenary of the start of WWI, and I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s no mention of the war in 2017, either.

This is also one of those disgraceful stories in which the Chinese themselves are treated badly from the way they were transported to Europe via Canada to the conditions they endured and lack of recognition for their work.

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