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Date: Saturday, 27 June 1936
Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, right, Chairman of the National Military Council, Chairman of the Nationalist Government of China, and President of the Republic of China, with General Long Yun, left, Warlord and Governor of the province of Yunnan, Nanking, on June 27, 1936. Many Chinese commanders had enjoyed regional autonomy too long to risk their lives and power merely at Chiang Kai Shek’s command. Governor Han Fuju, for example, ignominiously abandoned Shandong province to the Japanese, although he, in contrast to most, paid for his disregard of Chiang’s orders with his life. He was executed in January 1938. Kuomintang's Army was not, however, a united, national army, but a coalition of armies which differed in degrees of loyalty to the central government as well as in training, equipment and military capabilities. Long Yun, governor of Yunnan, for example, resisted central government encroaches upon his provincial power; Governor Yan Xishan, commander of the Second War Zone in North China and vice chairman of the Military Council, ruled his native Shanxi as an autonomous satrapy. He prohibited units of the Central Army from entering his war zone. Since 1941, Yan had even maintained close and amiable relations with the Japanese invader.