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Mengjiang: Japanese puppet state

Last modified: 2014-04-14 by zoltán horváth
Keywords: mongolia | china | inner mongolia | mengjiang |
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Mongol Military Government (1936-1937)

[Flag of Inner Mongolia, 1936]
by Mark Sensen 26 June 1996

Inner Mongolia or Mengjiang (Meng Chiang), northeast China, north to the independent (Outer) Mongolia. I don't know by heart the exact dates of its existence nor what the official political status was. It used a flag of light blue with a canton of vertical red-yellow-white (order ?) in unequal widths (the flag is in Whitney Smith's "big" book and e.g. in a recent issue of the Flagmaster).
Harald Müller 11 December 1995


The flag adopted 28 June 1936. There were different, possibly earlier, versions of this flag: one with the stripes in the canton horizontally, one with stripes vertically and unequal, and one with stripes vertically and equal. According to Flagmaster no.79 it is most likely the latter one that was the official one.
Mark Sensen 26 June 1996


Mongolian Federated Autonomous Government (1937-1941)

The United Autonomous Government of Mengjiang 蒙古聯合自治政府

(Second World War Japanese puppet State in Inner Mongolia)

[Mongolian Federated Autonomous Council, 1937]
by Mark Sensen

The Japanese controlled Inner Mongolia where was constituted an "Autonomous Council" in 1934. On 8 December, 1937, in advance of the Japanese invasion of China, the Mongolian Prince Teh Wang proclaimed independence, signed a cooperation agreement with Manchokuo, and adopted for the country the name of MENGKUKUO (as given in Spanish sources; Meng Chiang is the name used in English sources). The capital was established at Chan Pei, near Kalgan. Chinese dominance of the area ended after the murder of a Chinese delegate on 24 January, 1938. The Japanese imposed a government, in which the principal ministers were Japanese. In August 1945, the Mengkukuo went over to the communists, with Soviet help. I think that the earliest flags predate 1937 - perhaps between 1934 and 1937, or even earlier. Some sort of flag was presumably adopted in 1929 when the region of Burga was constituted as a republic for some months.
Jaume Ollé 30 June 1996

The only name I have ever heard is "Mengjiang" (or "Meng Chiang)" although "Mengguguo" also makes sense (both "guo" and "jiang" mean land, the latter rather in a geographical context and the former in a political context). On the coins or banknotes only "Mengjiang" is used, but they were issued by the Japanese puppet government. So possibly, "Mengguguo" was used between 1934 and 1937. The other possibility is a confusion with the name "Manzhouguo" (or "Manchu Kuo)", the Japanese puppet state in Manchuria. It is anyway interesting to notice that neither of the names is Mongolian, both are Chinese.
Harald Müller 01 July 1996


This government is actually called "Mengjiang Lianhe Zizhi Zhengfu," or "The United Autonomous Government of Mengjiang," or "The United Autonomous Government of the Mongolian Lands." It is a forced union of the puppet governments of Northern Shanxi, Southern Chahar, and the United Autonomous Mongolian Aimags. In the Japanese Empire, it is not really a "state" like Manchukuo or Republic of China-Nanking; it is formally a part of Republic of China-Nanking but it has absolute "autonomy" within Wang's government. As a fact, Mengjiang was more under the "control" of Manchukuo than Nanking; many of its Japanese officials had been in Manchuria before they took office in Mengjiang and the Mengjiang was exchangeable in par with the Manchukuo currency, which is in theory pegged with the Yen.
Prince Tek opposed the use of Mengjiang or Mongolian Lands as the name of the government since the name was too pan-Chinese and he always wanted Mongolian "statehood," but Japan always objected to the idea-- it wasn't until 1941 when the Japanese allowed them to call the government uls within its borders, while outside it's still a local autonomous government within the Republic of China.
The adoption date of this flag is actually 1 September 1939, not 28 October 1937. On 28 October 1937, three puppet governments-- United Autonomous Mongolian Aimags, the Autonomous Government of Northern Shanxi and the Autonomous Government of Southern Chahar, established a coalition called The United Committee of Mengjiang. At this stage, the three governments remained administratively separate, and they have their own flags.

On 1 September, after much Japanese deliberation, the three governments merged to become one "autonomous" government, the Mengjiang United Autonomous Government, nominally under China but actually more aligned with Manchukuo. On that day, the government issued its manifesto, the Government's Article of Corporation (i.e. Constitution) and any other things were issued. The mention of their flag was as follows:

In the past, the different governments in Mengjiang have their own flags. Now, as the Mengjiang United Autonomous Government has been established, there should be a symbol to symbolise the unitary government of the region. Therefore, it has been decided that a flag of seven stripes and four colours, from the top are yellow, blue, white and red, would be used to represent the government. Yellow symbolises the Hans, blue symbolise the Mongols, white symbolises the Muslims, and the red in the center symbolises Japan. That meant, we use [the idea of] uniting the nations of Han, Mongol and Muslims with Japan at the center as the symbol of the government.
John Ma 11-12 December 2004

Cavalry flag of Inner Mongolian Army

[postal ensign]
image by Jaume Ollé, 13 December 2009

Cavalry flag of Inner Mongolian Army supported by Japanese Army. The red flag charged with white disc which is reverse Hinomaru.
Nozomi Kariyasu, 13 December 2009


Mongolian League (1937-1945)

[Mongolian league flag]
by Jarig Bakker

This is from "Wie, wat, waar?", 1941. The almanac has this info on Inner Mongolia:
Federal state: 3 autonomous regions., belongs since the 17th century to China.
Since April 1934 autonomous state. Late 1935: an independent Mongolian government was formed, seated in Changpei; the territory of Prince Tek; remained autonomous. In 1936 Prince Tek joined the Manchu Japanese bloc. In Shakar and Shansi autonomous governments were formed in 1937. 28 Oct 1937 formation of an autonomous government of the Mongolian League in Suiyuan.
Area: 506.800 km2
Pop: 5,5 million
Capital: Kalgan
President: Tek Wang
This flag has a Manchuoko pattern.
This remained a Japanese puppet-state until 1945. Tek Wang is also written as Teh Wang. He was the prince of the Shilingol-region at the start of all turmoil. (from: "Die Mongolen - Beiträge zu ihrer Geschichte und Kultur", by Michael Weiers, 1986.)
Jarig Bakker, 22 December 2000


Postal flag

[Inner Mongolia postal flag - Japanese occupation]
by Phil Nelson

This is the flag of the Directorate General of Posts and Telecommunications (later Directorate General of Communications) of the Mongol Borderlands Federation Committee, under occupation in Inner Mongolia. The insignia was chosen by public competition (winner not named) and adopted on 15 May 1939. The barbs represent traditional Yuan dynasty feather messages. The flag is illustrated in a postmark as well as in a postcard commemorating the 5th anniversary of the Mongolian Postal and Telecommunications Systems. The image size is approximate.
Phil Nelson, 26 January 2000