Mao's Army Goes to Sea: The Island Campaigns and the Founding of China's Navy (Paperback)

Mao's Army Goes to Sea: The Island Campaigns and the Founding of China's Navy By Toshi Yoshihara Cover Image

Mao's Army Goes to Sea: The Island Campaigns and the Founding of China's Navy (Paperback)


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New details about the founding of China's Navy reveals critical historical context and insight into future strategy

From 1949 to 1950, the People's Liberation Army (PLA) made crucial decisions to establish a navy and secure China's periphery. The civil war had been fought with a peasant army, yet in order to capture key offshore islands from the Nationalist rival, Mao Zedong needed to develop maritime capabilities. Mao's Army Goes to Sea is a ground-breaking history of the founding of the Chinese navy and Communist China's earliest island-seizing campaigns.

In this definitive account of a little-known yet critical moment in China's naval history, Toshi Yoshihara shows that Chinese leaders refashioned the stratagems and tactics honed over decades of revolutionary struggle on land for nautical purposes. Despite significant challenges, the PLA ultimately scored important victories over its Nationalist foes as it captured offshore islands to secure its position.

Drawing extensively from newly available Chinese-language sources, this book reveals how the navy-building process, sea battles, and contested offshore landings had a lasting influence on the PLA. Even today, the institution's identity, strategy, doctrine, and structure are conditioned by these early experiences and myths. Mao's Army Goes to Sea will help US policymakers and scholars place China's recent maritime achievements in proper historical context--and provide insight into how its navy may act in the future.

Toshi Yoshihara is a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments and an adjunct professor in the Security Studies Program at Georgetown University. He was previously the John A.van Beuren Chair of Asia-Pacific Studies at the US Naval War College and coauthored Red Star over the Pacific: China's Rise and the Challenge to US Maritime Strategy.
Product Details ISBN: 9781647122829
ISBN-10: 1647122821
Publisher: Georgetown University Press
Publication Date: January 3rd, 2023
Pages: 176
Language: English