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Reviews 191 Xiaoyuan Liu. A Partnershipfor Disorder: China, the United States, and their Policiesfor the PostwarDisposition oftheJapanese Empire, 1941-1945. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996. xiv, 343 pp. Hardcover $59-95) isbn 0-521-55099-8. American and Chinese Nationalist policy planning in 1941-1945 for a postwar East Asia has generally been ignored or treated only brieflyby historians because the Nationalists lost mainland China to the Communists in the civil war of19461949 , and a policy thus never materialized. This joint effort is all too commonly dismissed as a sterile phase ofthe wartime alliance or as a precursor ofthe upcoming Cold War, both ofwhich have been given more detailed attention. A PartnershipforDisorderfills in the gap by examining U.S.-Chinese foreign-policy planning in World War II for decolonizing the Japanese Empire after the war. Basing his findings on extensive archival research in both U.S. State Department records and Chinese Nationalist documents, Xiaoyuan Liu provides due coverage of the Washington-Chongqing diplomatic cooperation on designing the peace and organizing a new international order for postwar East Asia. Integrating in excellent fashion the various subfields ofwartime Sino-American relations through a synthesized treatment of their interactions and conflicts, Liu's study traces the complex origins of the problems between the two governments. The book provides fresh insight into the often neglected but vital question ofwhy the United Sates and the Republic of China (ROC) could not reach agreement on many postwar issues and failed to forge an effective, long-term partnership that might have prevented the Soviet Union from expanding to the Pacific region and thus avoid turmoil in East Asia for many decades to come. Any Asia specialist and graduate student ofinternational relations history will find the book's previously unpublished sources of great interest and provocative ofimportant questions not raised before. The book begins with a narrative ofthe wartime Sino-American alliance, which drove the Kuomintang (KMT) toward a substantial renovation of ROC foreign affairs and which led to the initiation of a U.S. foreign policy that fostered its first Asian client state as "the representative ofthe emerging new Asia" (p. 7). The second chapter discusses how a working relationship regarding die postwar disposition ofJapan was slowly forged between Washington and Chongqing, although the American and Chinese leaders "were preparing different futures forĀ© 1998 by University JapanĀ» (p 53) Thdr differences are examined closely in the next two chapters ' with respect to many concrete issues and the postwar settlement in Korea, Manchuria , Taiwan, and the Ryukyu islands. Chapters 5 and 6 continue the chrono- 192 China Review International: Vol. 5, No. 1, Spring 1998 logical discussion of Roosevelt's and Chiang Kai-shek's diplomatic maneuvers and disagreements at the Cairo Conference in 1943. Chapter 7 compares Chiang's foreign policy with the intentions of the Chinese Communist leaders at Yanan. Chapters 8 and 9 point out that the Cairo Conference did not result in a definite Sino-American postwar alliance and that already in the wartime alliance there were many signs of erosion, proving its policy planning to be "futile" (p. 229). The subsequent divergent policies therefore led to the invitation of the Soviet Union "as an important party to the power configuration" (p. 241) into Manchuria , the strategic international center ofAsia and the likely place for any first Soviet military action against Japan. "Inter-Allied Manchurian diplomacy," as suggested in chapter 10, eventually created a new triangular relationship in East Asia among Washington, Chongqing, and Moscow. The triangular relationship, which was finalized by the Yalta Conference in February 1945, indicated the bankruptcy of the U.S.-Chinese partnership for peace when the two delegations negotiated with the Russians separately at the Moscow Conference in July. The "Yalta formula" had become a "paradox" since the consummation ofYalta at Moscow had "prepared the formula's dissolution" (chapter 11, p. 285). And the Soviet Red Army's eleventh-hour involvement in the Pacific war further complicated SinoAmerican relations. By the war's end, the triangular relationship had proved unworkable for postwar peace and order and instead had produced instability and disorder in East Asia. The last chapter concludes that Roosevelt was overconfident in power politics and that Chiang...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-9367
Print ISSN
1069-5834
Pages
pp. 191-194
Launched on MUSE
2011-03-30
Open Access
No
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