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Stilwell and the American Experience in China, 1911-1945 (Grove Great Lives) (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 10. Oktober 2001

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Amazon.com: HASH(0x95246708) von 5 Sternen 123 Rezensionen
102 von 106 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x950ac1ec) von 5 Sternen Wonderfully Researched, Balanced, Well-Written Account 30. März 2001
Von Thomas R. Dean - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This book is about a period that is both so important and yet largely neglected in American education. The book is quite easy to read with its strong steady narrative flow, its interest in the personalities at play as well as its study of the background of their struggles. Since the book came out around the time of the Vietnam War, I assumed it would be more anti-American foreign policy in tone than it is. It's quite balanced.
Tuchman obviously regards Stilwell as the hero of the tale. It's hard to come to any other conclusion about this deeply humble but brilliant, unwearying but always frustrated man. Yet she is quite fair in assessing the difficulties faced by Stilwell's close-to-home antagonist, Chiang Kai Shek. She is also not sparing in describing the courage, success and tactical genius of Claire Chennault, whose (clearly wrong-headed) conception of the War was opposed to that of Stilwell.
The story of America in China in WWII and its aftermath is so fascinating, so HUGELY important - and still so relatively little publicized - especially in relation to the affairs of MacArthur, Nimitz and Halsey in the Pacific or Eisenhower, Bradley and Patton in Europe.
I long for a movie that will show the fascinating struggle among Stilwell, Chiang, and Chennault in relation to the Japanese and Mao's Communists. It can be said that America's foreign policy in 1943-50 has far less immediate impact in post Cold War Europe today than in Japan, China, Burma, and Indonesia. America's two costly wars since WWII have been in Asia. This book gives a wonderful background to anyone interested in how did the existing state of affairs in China come to pass?
America was intimately involved - particularly two Americans - 1) Claire Lee Chennault, a maverick Cajun from Louisiana who resigned from the American Air Force in rage at their refusal to adopt his revolutionary views on fighters and bombing - and became the head of China's Air Force in 1937; 2) Joseph Stilwell, an upper middle class WASP from a family that went back to the early 1600s, who had been intimately involved with China since the 1920s.
It's just a great story, and it's unlikely you know much of it.
121 von 132 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x950b27a4) von 5 Sternen ...And We Still Don't Get It 25. April 2006
Von P. M Simon - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Barbara Tuchman's Pulitzer-winning history, STILWELL and the AMERICAN EXPERIENCE IN CHINA should be a must-read for every US historian, politician, or businessman dealing with the Middle Kingdom. Tuchman makes a very valid central point- that America doesn't 'get' China, understand recent Chinese history, or interact well with Chinese officials.

That theme has been espoused by others and we should ask if it is so. I can confidently say that Tuchman makes a compelling case. She uses old Vinegar Joe and his relationship with Chiang Kaishek (Jiang Jieshi)as a case study. \

Thus, although STILWELL stands well on its own as a history of US-China relations during WWII or as a biography of the general, those strengths should not obscure the main theme: that the US has not pursued relations with China effectively or listened to our experts.

Before those reading this review start voting "not helpful," let me interject that I speak fluent Mandarin, have lived in Taiwan and the mainland, have been to most of the places described in this history, have been a US diplomat in the PRC, and had an association with the Stilwell Museum in Chongqing.

Tuchman's book is full of nuggets about the life of Chiang and Stilwell, and has many other interesting people woven in: MacArthur, Pat Hurley, Pershing, Mao, Zhou Enlai, Terry and the Pirates, etc. That alone makes the book an excellent read, a fact furthered by Ms. Tuchman's accessible style.

Yet, her main point still hasn't poked anyone in Washington or the US public in the eye, apparently: that the US still sufferes from the delusion that it can somehow "control" or "change" China. As Tuchman remarks, China is not and has never been "ours" to lose, win, or modify.
46 von 48 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x950acd50) von 5 Sternen Tuchman's Vinegar Joe Is Easy To Swallow 19. Juni 2006
Von Chimonsho - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Employment in 1930s China gave Barbara Tuchman an early start three decades before beginning this book. The wait was worth it, since "Stilwell" is an enduring classic, combining sound scholarship with fluid, often brilliant writing that makes for great popular history. "Vinegar Joe" Stilwell was among the most interesting of WW2 generals, perhaps second only to friend and mentor George Marshall. Stilwell possessed an array of strengths (personal integrity, fluent Mandarin, well-informed sympathy for the Chinese) and weaknesses (lack of tact, acid disdain for Chiang Kai-Shek). But his task---maximizing China's war effort against Japan---was essentially impossible, since the deep roots of GMD-CCP rivalry reflected complex internal dynamics. US (and Soviet) attempts to influence the course of the Sino-Japanese struggle and subsequent civil war had only marginal impact. Recent research adds much detail to our knowledge of 1940s China, but Tuchman's cautionary tale has lost none of its relevance for today's policymakers, who seemingly still believe that it is possible (as per J. Spence's title) "To Change China." Among many works on this era, T. White ed., "The Stilwell Papers" features his blunt, earthy style, while J. Davies, "Dragon By The Tail" is a compelling account by an Old China Hand who served on Stilwell's staff.
33 von 34 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x950b4978) von 5 Sternen An exceptional study of one of America's least known heroes. 11. April 1999
Von Ein Kunde - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
"Stilwell and the American Experience in China" is a very interesting biography of one of America's great military leaders. It engages the reader on several levels.
Mrs. Tuchman weaves a study of an era in China's history around the biography of General Stilwell. The period spans approximately one hundred years, beginning with the Opium Wars of the mid 19th century. The history concludes with the Chinese Communists' assumption of power in 1949. Barbara Tuchman's research and analysis of the events and people who lived during this period provide a partial explanation for the success of the Communist revolution. She accomplishes this through her intriguing character studies of the main protagonists, Chiang Kai-shek, Mao Tse-tung, and President Franklin Roosevelt. The character studies suggest the motivation for their decisions.
Mrs. Tuchman also effectively exposes the vastly different management styles of the Allied military and political leaders. They include Churchill, Mountbatten, Roosevelt, Marshall, Eisenhower, Chiang Kai-shek, and Stilwell. She reveals how these men attempted to exert influence over each other in deciding the conduct of the war. She identifies which men prevailed in these negotiations. This book would serve as an excellent reference on management for either civilian or military leaders.
Mrs. Tuchman also provides interesting insights into the personalities of Major General Claire Chennault of the Flying Tigers and General George Marshall, who also authored the plan that restored Europe's economy after the war. She helps us understand the basis for their fame and determine whether they were worthy of the recognition they received.
Finally, this is a compelling biography of a man who played a significant role in World War II, but received little recognition during his lifetime. She details the reasons why General Stilwell is not as famous or held in the same regard as the other great military leaders of WWII. Even so, Mrs. Tuchman's analysis forces the reader to conclude that General Stilwell's devotion to this country and the people of China was unsurpassed.
I would like to see this book released again, so that more people can learn about General Stilwell and America's relationship with China during World War II.
29 von 31 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x950b46e4) von 5 Sternen Fascinating, and frustrating... 29. August 2006
Von Teresa Carpenter - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Stillwell and the American Experience in China, 1911-45, may not deliver that feel-good, "how we won the war" bump, but it does offer a thoughtful and highly readable account of America's attempts to come to terms with an emerging superpower.

Pulitzer laureate Barbara Tuchman follows the career of Joseph Stilwell, a dyed-in-the-wool Yankee and West Point graduate, who was posted as a military attaché to the Legation in Peking in l920 - only nine years after the Chinese threw off imperial rule. During World War II, he was named Allied Chief of Staff to Generalissimo Chiang Kai-Shek. The contest of wills between these two men occupies much of the book: Stilwell wanting to take over and train Chinese into crack units to resist the Japanese; Chiang insisting that the Americans handle Japan while he and his lackluster troops occupied themselves hunting down Communists. Their story reveals a larger clash of cultures, pitting Stilwell, the pragmatic, tactless Westerner, against Chiang, a would-be emperor trapped by inertia and the need to save face.

Tuchman revels in detail but keeps her story moving briskly. (It tends to get bogged down in Burma, but so did the Allies.) Generally favorable to Stilwell, she points out the folly of trying to impose top-down a set of Western values upon a non-Western culture. As for training a listless army to prop up a tinpot dictator? It was not a good idea then, and it's not a good idea now.
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