Skip to comments.The Amazing Saga Of Two-Gun Cohen
Posted on 08/29/2012 2:50:59 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator
In November 1947, the United Nations was considering the creation of a Jewish state in parts of Western Palestine and a new Arab state in the other parts.
The hopes of the Jews rested in large part on China. The five-member Security Council had to approve putting the resolution before the General Assembly, but China, one of the five, was threatening to veto it.
The head of the Chinese delegation was approached by a hero of the Chinese campaign against the Japanese during World War II, a man who had been a general and senior adviser to President Sun Yat-sen. The general persuaded the delegation to abstain. The Security Council voted approval and the Partition Resolution was sent to the General Assembly, where it passed. Modern Israel came into existence.
The general who persuaded the Chinese not to oppose the resolution was not Chinese himself but, in fact, a Jew born in Poland in 1887.
Morris Abraham Cohen was brought to London from Poland when he was still a toddler and grew up in the impoverished East End of London. By the time he was 12 he had become a skilled boxer and a pickpocket.
He quickly amassed a police arrest record and his family sent him to reform school until he was 16. Once released, he went to Canada to work on a farm in rural Saskatchewan, near some Indian reservations. The farming bored him; he preferred work as a carnival barker and con man. This got him arrested yet again and he did some jail time.
While wandering the Canadian West he became friendly with the local Chinese. Cohen liked Chinese cuisine (what Jew doesnt?) and the Chinese outlook on life.
One day Cohen wandered into a Chinese eatery and realized the owner was being robbed. Cohen beat the robber to a pulp. The Chinese were so impressed, they embraced Cohen as one of their own. He joined the local chapter of nationalist leader Sun Yat-sens political movement and started to pick up some basic Chinese. Cohen raised funds for Suns movement and helped procure arms.
After serving in World War I as a Canadian soldier, Cohen headed off in 1922 to China with plans to work as a railroad developer. But once in Shanghai he found work as a writer on the English-language newspaper associated with Sun Yat-sens movement.
The Chinese called him Ma Kun (clenched fist), which was as close as they could get to Morris Cohen. He procured arms for a warlord of Canton in the 1920s and was adviser to Wu Tiecheng, the Canton police chief who later became mayor of Shanghai. Cohen began to serve as part of Suns guard force, and eventually commanded the entire 250-man presidential bodyguard unit.
Always armed, Cohen managed to defend Sun from more than one assassination attempt. After Cohen was wounded in his hand while driving off one group of assassins, he started carrying a second pistol and local Westerners immediately dubbed him Two-Gun Cohen, the nickname he carried with pride for the rest of his life.
Eventually he was appointed head of the Chinese secret service. His sidekick was another Jew, an anti-Soviet Russian named Moses Schwartzberg who had been part of a plot to assassinate Lenin in 1918.
Because of the importance of the Schwartzberg-Cohen pair, Yiddish became one of the three languages of the Chinese secret service, after Mandarin and English. Schwartzberg would later organize a regiment of 1,200 Jewish volunteers to fight for Israel in its War of Independence.
After Sun Yat-sen died, Two-Gun Cohen was named commander of the Chinese 19th field army. He worked for a while for Chinese President Chiang Kai-shek. He led Nationalist troops in fighting against both the Japanese and the Chinese communists. He was the only European ever to serve as a Chinese general.
When the Japanese invaded China in the 1930s, Cohen worked for British intelligence. Just after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hong Kong was invaded by the Japanese. Two-Gun got Sun Yat-sens widow out safely on one of the last planes to escape. Cohen himself was captured by the Japanese and thrown into the Stanley Prison Camp, where he was beaten and mistreated.
After the war he lived in Canada, where he helped the Zionists obtain arms for Israels War of Independence. He eventually returned to England, where he died in 1970. On his tombstone in Manchester his name appears in English, Hebrew, and Chinese characters. His funeral was attended by representatives from both Chinas, which were still at war with each another. It was the only thing in the world on which they could agree.
There is a special entry about Two-Gun in the Spy Museum in Washington. Two books have been published about Two-Guns life. Rob Reiner is working on a movie about Two-Gun.
Two-Guns cousin, the journalist Marion Dreyfus in New York City, tells me her family still has many scrolls and silks that Two-Gun sent them from China. She found a plaque on the wall of the Shanghai synagogue commemorating Two-Gun as one of the ten most important Jews in Chinese history.
When Cohen returned to Manchester after the war, he and his cousins went into the raincoat business, the weather in England being ideal for such a venture. Two pistols and a Chinese generalship notwithstanding, Two-Gun was a proud Jew and he could even get you a raincoat wholesale!
Unfortunately, Nationalist China was (for whatever reason) not especially sympathetic to the Zionist cause, whether from the crypto-Communist origins of the Kuomintang or Chiang's long association with Chinese moslems or for some other reason (long after his departure, Taiwan once denied an Israeli flight to de-plane there, despite the commonality of the two nations as "pariahs" to much of the world). But it looks like in this one case they did the right thing (though they voted against the actual resolution when it came up) and didn't veto it from coming up for a vote.
Also unfortunately, Mme. Sun Yat-sen (whom Morris rescued from the Japanese) was a lousy Communist who lived out her years being lionized by the Russians at their "Sun Yat-sen University." Ironically, she was Mme. Chiang Kai-shek's sister.
As a final note, I'm not sure the claim that Morris was the only European to serve as a Chinese general is accurate. I recall Charles Gordon "Chinese" Gordon, the British military man who helped the Manchus subdu the Taiping rebellion.
Ping for y’all’s interest.
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Thanks Zionist Conspirator.
Very Interesting Z.C.
I am embarrassed to say that despite growing up in a Zionist household, I should know more about Morris Cohen than what I do.
Thank You for posted this very informative article.
Hey, I'd never heard of him till today!
I will ask her next time I speak to her if she remembers what book that was.
Until then, This was a Great Article Z.C. shows the commitment many had to make Israel a reality.
I had no idea you were a nonagenarian! Guess I'm not the oldest brony after all.
BOO! BOO! I saw that as soon as I posted it.
If you must know I was born in 1988, about the average age for one! XD
China was one of the few nations that let Jews settle to escape Nazi Germany. US and Europe due to Depression kept the Jews out to die in Germany. China after WW2 was economically devastated. The last thing they want is entanglements in the world. Voting for the partition meant war between Israel and the Arabs. China had no dog in the fight. We chose to back Israel, and we are entangled in the Arab Jewish conflict ever since. Maybe the Chinese were wiser then us.
Cool story - thanks for the ping.
Only if you assume that the Jewish G-d is not, in fact, G-d. I also note that many fanatically anti-Israel right wingers were all for choosing sides in other parts of the world.
Great story...I thought at first this was about Mickey Cohen
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