The pivotal years in the Chinese civil war, 1947-8, found America locked in battle with Mao Zedong and the Communists for the allegiance of China's democratic middle forces. The stakes were high for both sides. As the clouds of Cold War gathered, the US needed the liberals to provide legitimacy to Chiang Kai-shek's increasingly discredited-but staunchly anti-Communist-Nationalist government; the Communists needed the democrats so that the revolution under their leadership could advance from the countryside to the cities. In the polarized atmosphere then engulfing China, whoever lost the battle for the middle forces would face political isolation-and, ultimately, defeat. China's Inevitable Revolution explores this tumultuous and decisive battle. It tells the compelling story of assassination, repression, and protest in urban China. It reveals how America's fixation wtih the containing of Communism led in China to the constraining of democracy. In so doing, it demonstrates how America alienated the very democratic forces on which it pinned its hopes, thereby, ironically, contributing to the Communist victory.

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