The Struggle for Taiwan

Sulmaan Wasif Khan


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Allen Lane
14 May 2024
ISBN: 9780241674857
336 pages

From the publisher

A gripping account of the past and future of Taiwan

'Deeply researched and fascinating' - The Guardian

In the overwhelming chaos across Asia at the end of the Second World War, one relatively minor issue was the future of the Japanese colony of Taiwan, a large island some one hundred miles off the coast of Fujian. Handed to the Kuomintang-ruled Republic of China, in 1949 it suddenly became the focus of global attention as a random cross-section of defeated Nationalists, including President Chiang Kai-shek, fled there from Mao's triumphant Communist forces.

The Struggle for Taiwan is a balanced and convincing account of the sequence of events that has left Taiwan for generations as a political anomaly, with issues around its status and future continuing to threaten war. With deepening democratization, Taiwan further goads Beijing, remaining functionally independent from China even as Xi Jinping clamours for unification.

This invaluable book allows readers to understand the complex story of this unique place and its role in international relations. With its striking economic dynamism and commitment to democracy, can Taiwan continue - as Hong Kong once did - to thrive, or will China conquer it? And will the world be able to maintain peace across the Taiwan Strait or will it stumble into war?