Service, John Stewart

(1909-1999)
   John Stewart Service was born the son of missionaries in China. He completed his high school education in California and graduated from Oberlin College in 1931. After taking the Foreign Service entrance examination in 1933, he was posted to China. During World War II, Service was critical of Chiang Kai-shek. He also spent some time liaising with Mao Zedong and wrote positively about the communist leader. In 1945, Service returned home and was indicted but cleared by a grand jury in the Amerasia affair. However, in March 1950 he was accused of working with the communists by Senator Joseph McCarthy. Service was twice cleared by internal investigations but subsequently dismissed on grounds of “reasonable” doubt. He appealed the decision, and it eventually reached the Supreme Court, which ruled in his favor. Service returned to the State Department in 1957 but was given limited responsibility and retired in 1962. He completed an M.A. at the University of California, Berkeley, and became a librarian in the Center of Chinese Studies. In 1971, he was invited back to China in advance of the visit by President Richard M. Nixon.

Historical Dictionary of the Roosevelt–Truman Era . . 2015.

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