A Military History of China

A Military History of China

Language: English

Pages: 344

ISBN: 0813135842

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Gaining an understanding of China's long and sometimes bloody history can help to shed light on China's ascent to global power. Many of China's imperial dynasties were established as the result of battle, from the chariot warfare of ancient times to the battles of the Guomindang (KMT) and Communist regimes of the twentieth century. China's ability to sustain complex warfare on a very large scale was not emulated in other parts of the world until the Industrial Age, despite the fact that the country is only now rising to economic dominance.

In A Military History of China, Updated Edition, David A. Graff and Robin Higham bring together leading scholars to offer a basic introduction to the military history of China from the first millennium B.C.E. to the present. Focusing on recurring patterns of conflict rather than traditional campaign narratives, this volume reaches farther back into China's military history than similar studies. It also offers insightful comparisons between Chinese and Western approaches to war. This edition brings the volume up to date, including discussions of the Chinese military's latest developments and the country's most recent foreign conflicts.













he envisioned started without him. THE ORIGINS OF THE RED ARMY Mao never had a chance to participate actively in the Autumn Harvest Uprising. However, he did arrive in time to organize its survivors into the 1st Division of the Worker and Peasant Revolutionary Army. In October 1927 he led them to Jinggangshan, a remote, mountainous region along the Jiangxi-Hunan border that would serve as a secure rural base from which to renew the Communist movement. It was there that he employed hit-and-run

long ago identified a cyclical pattern in their history, a rhythm associated with the rise and fall of dynasties. Imperial regimes emerged out of the chaos of civil war to impose order and reunify the country. They enjoyed a period of vigor (including expansion into foreign lands) but then, after the passage of several generations, fell gradually into decline. Eventually rebellions broke out that brought down the dynasty and ushered in a new period of civil war, out of which a new unifier would

example, by the Han-period documents of military administration recovered from Edsen-gol in Inner Mongolia), and the spread of woodblock printing during the Northern Song period must have led to an increase of popular literacy. Well-known Chinese innovations of the imperial period included not only printing, but also paper, gunpowder, and the mariner's compass. After 1500 C.E., Chinese technology began to lag behind that of the West, probably due more to revolutionary developments in Europe than

governor of a province could make one quite wealthy through the bribery and graft that was a normal part of civil government in the Qing. The emperor, Grand Council, and imperial commissioner organized the campaigns, creating a staff for the imperial commissioner to manage logistics, intelligence, and actual operations in the field. Great care was taken in assigning men to this staff, as well as to subordinate positions. Normally, veteran officers were chosen, and they usually brought along many

Zhili cliques began with a division of interests over the strategy and the spoils of the North-South War. Duan Qirui had been the main advocate of military unification and used the war to strengthen the positions of his closest associates. While Feng Guozhang initially supported the war, he soon found greater political benefits, in his rivalry with Duan, in supporting a negotiated settlement of north-south differences. Feng found support from Beiyang Army commanders in central China who feared

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