Where Chiang Kai-shek Lost China

Where Chiang Kai-shek Lost China

The Liao-Shen Campaign, 1948
Harold M. Tanner
Distribution: world
Publication date: 7/29/2015
Format: cloth 384 pages, 10 b&w illus., 10 maps
6 x 9
ISBN: 978-0-253-01692-8
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Description

The civil war in China that ended in the 1949 victory of Mao Zedong’s Communist forces was a major blow to US interests in the Far East and led to heated recriminations about how China was “lost.” Despite their significance, there have been few studies in English of the war's major campaigns. The Liao-Shen Campaign was the final act in the struggle for control of China’s northeast. After the Soviet defeat of Japan in Manchuria, Communist Chinese and then Nationalist troops moved into this strategically important area. China’s largest industrial base and a major source of coal, Manchuria had extensive railways and key ports (both still under Soviet control). When American mediation over control of Manchuria failed, full-scale civil war broke out. By spring of 1946, Chiang Kai-shek’s Nationalist armies had occupied most of the southern, economically developed part of Manchuria, pushing Communist forces north of the Songhua (Sungari) River. But over the next two years, the tide would turn. The Communists isolated the Nationalist armies and mounted a major campaign aimed at destroying the Kuomintang forces. This is the story of that campaign and its outcome, which were to have such far-reaching consequences.

Author Bio

Harold Tanner is Professor of History and Fellow of the Military History Center at the University of North Texas. A specialist in twentieth-century and contemporary China and Chinese military history, he is the author of The Battle for Manchuria and the Fate of China: Siping, 1946 (IUP, 2012) and China: A History.

Reviews

"The Liao-Shen campaign is very important and well-deserving of the book's title." —Mark Wilkinson, Virginia Military Institute

"Not just a military history of the campaign, but a consideration of its broad diplomatic significance and its place in historical memory. Will add significantly to our existing knowledge of the Chinese Civil War." —Priscilla Roberts, University of Hong Kong

"A masterful contribution not simply to the history of the civil war, but also to the history of 20th century China. A compelling narrative that grips one's attention from outset and doesn't let go until the last paragraph." —Steven I. Levine, author,
Anvil of Victory: The Communist Revolution in Manchuria, 1945-1948

"Where Chiang Kai-shek Lost China is more than a fluidly written battle narrative or operational history. By tapping an impressive array of archival materials, published document collections, and memoirs, Harold Tanner has put the Liao-Shen Campaign in the larger context of the Chinese Civil War and significantly advanced our understanding of the military history of modern China." —Michigan War Studies Review

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Table of Contents

A Note on Chinese Names
Introduction
1. China: Lost or Won?
2. The Struggle for Manchuria Begins: August 1945-June 1946
3. Nationalist Offensive, Communist Reaction: South Manchuria, July-November 1946
4. Breaking the Nationalist Offensive: The Three Expeditions/Four Defenses Campaign, December 1946-March 1947
5. The Summer Offensive and the Wedemeyer Mission, May-August 1947
6. Encircling the Cities: the Autumn and Winter Offensives, September 1947-March 1948
7. The Battle Behind the Lines: Building the North Manchuria Base Area
Chapter 8. Army of Learning: the Transition From Guerrilla to Conventional Warfighting Capability
9. Contention Within: Summer, 1948
10. Preparing to Annihilate the Enemy: September 1948
11. Close the Door and Beat the Dog: the Battles of Tashan and Jinzhou, October 1948
12. Putting Changchun Under Siege: March-June 1948
13. Death, Treason and Surrender in the Garden City: June-October 1948
14. Avalanche of Defeat: October-November 1948
15. Assessing and Remembering
Bibliography
Notes
Index
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