A Force So Swift, Kevin Peraino. New York: Crown, 2017.
Summary: A study of how the Truman adminstration, under Secretary of State Dean Acheson, framed America’s response to the rise of Mao as the Nationalist forces under Chiang Kai-shek fell to Communist forces in 1949.
The role of the People’s Republic of China as a world power is an accepted reality in today’s global landscape. Threats to Taiwan, seizure of coastal islands, influence throughout east and southeast Asia, and economic growth and trading relationships with the U.S. regularly are subjects of the evening news. What is often less understood are the events nearly 70 years ago that helped shape current realities.
In 1949 the world was recovering from war. China invaded by Japan in World War II, nominally was under control of a Nationalist government led by Chiang Kai-shek. Beginning in the spring of 1949, Communist forces under Mao…
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