Forgotten Ally: China's World War II, 1937-1945
An Economist Book of the Year
A Financial Times Book of the Year
“A book that has long cried out to be written.” — Observer (UK), Books of the Year
In 1937, two years before Hitler invaded Poland, Chinese troops clashed with Japanese occupiers in the first battle of World War II. Joining with the United States, the Soviet Union, and Great Britain, China became the fourth great ally in a devastating struggle for its very survival.
Prizewinning historian Rana Mitter unfurls China’s drama of invasion, resistance, slaughter, and political intrigue as never before. Based on groundbreaking research, this gripping narrative focuses on a handful of unforgettable characters, including Chiang Kai-shek, Mao Zedong, and Chiang’s American chief of staff, “Vinegar Joe” Stilwell. Mitter also recounts the sacrifice and resilience of everyday Chinese people through the horrors of bombings, famines, and the infamous Rape of Nanking.
More than any other twentieth-century event, World War II was crucial in shaping China’s worldview, making Forgotten Ally both a definitive work of history and an indispensable guide to today’s China and its relationship with the West.
“In the manner of David McCullough, [Mitter] creates a complex history that is urgently alive.” — Kirkus Reviews
What people are saying - Write a review
Review: Forgotten Ally: China's World War II, 1937-1945User Review - Jennifer - Goodreads
Rana Mitter makes an excellent argument for why our ignorance of China's involvement (and heroism) in WWII has had a negative impact on diplomatic relations since then. A significant work, and compelling without being overly sensational in tone. Read full review
Review: Forgotten Ally: China's World War II, 1937-1945User Review - Richard - Goodreads
Well-written, engaging reminder of why China was so important even before WW2, and how events there shaped the world today. Read full review
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