A tale of betrayal

By Tom Clifford | China Daily | Updated: 2017-02-10 07:18

A tale of betrayal

The book, Betrayed Ally. [Photo provided to China Daily]

A new book by Frances Wood and Christopher Arnander shows how China played a vital role in the Allies' victory in World War I. But instead of honor and appreciation, its efforts were disparaged, discounted and disregarded. Tom Clifford reports.

One hundred years ago, Europe was convulsed. Its young men were fighting war on an industrial scale. The carnage was meant to result in the war to end all wars. It led in actual fact to Versailles, the peace to end all peace, the great betrayal made up of lesser betrayals.

Betrayed Ally (China in the Great War) by Frances Wood and Christopher Arnander, superbly written and informative, shows how China played a critical, though unheralded, role in securing victory for the Allies. But instead of gratitude and appreciation, its efforts were scorned, derided and ignored.

The peace conference of 1918-19 may have had high ideals but it was undermined by subterfuge, intrigue and that word again, betrayal.

The Chinese delegates refused to sign the Versailles treaty and with good reason.

The treaty gave Japan a foothold in China that would lead to outright invasion.

This book provides an invaluable insight. Both authors are well equipped to chisel out this rich seam of history.

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