Nationalism and Communism in East Asia

Nationalism and Communism in East Asia

Nationalism and Communism in East Asia

Nationalism and Communism in East Asia

Excerpt

It is desirable that more Westerners should take an informed interest in the political movements that are transforming East Asia, though it is not equally desirable that more Westerners should write books about them. It is to be hoped that experts will continue to write about the particular East Asian countries of which they have special knowledge, but it is also important to look at East Asia as a whole, for what is happening in any one country is generally very much mixed up with what is happening in neighbouring countries. For my part, I have no claim to expert knowledge of any single East Asian country, nor of the region as a whole. In the following pages I have tried, in a short and simple way, to distinguish and relate the three great contemporary political forces in East Asia, and to discuss the problems they create for the West.

Any delimitation of East Asia is arbitrary. India must certainly be included, but I doubt whether it is possible, on political grounds, to justify the omission of Pakistan and Ceylon. Yet a line must be drawn somewhere on the border of the Indian Ocean and the Middle East.

It is easy for a Westerner to make bad mistakes in trying to interpret the political situation in East Asia. It is often hard to get the Facts, particularly in those areas where political censorship is rigorous, and even when the main facts are available there will be a good deal of conjecture in any estimate of their significance.

My aim, which has been chiefly determined by the limitations of my knowledge, has been to present problems and stimulate thought, rather than to provide detailed information or full documentation.

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