Gen. Douglas MacArthur as 2016 GOP Candidate

Amid the current field of Republicans vying for the Party’s nod in 2016, how would General Douglas MacArthur fare? While MacArthur ended his career without having given a full run for the nomination, arguably reached his career peak in 1946, and lived out his retirement in the New York Waldorf Astoria, perhaps placing the General in the present tense will allow for a few points of … Continue reading Gen. Douglas MacArthur as 2016 GOP Candidate

Chinese Journalists and the U.S. Occupation of Japan

At the conclusion of eight years of Japanese occupation of nearly every major city in the Republic of China, Chinese journalists were prepared not just to celebrate victory but to join the Allied nations in occupying Japan. The desire to undo the fundamental reorientation of the Sino-Japanese hierarchy of 1894-95  and restore China to regional preeminence was nearly universal, as was the consensus of seeing China … Continue reading Chinese Journalists and the U.S. Occupation of Japan

North Korea: Examination Materials

I recently completed a month-long lecture series on North Korean-Chinese relations at Pacific Lutheran University.  Because these lectures were occasioned by a course I teach at PLU, I had the pleasure of writing an exam on the topic. Here, in no particular order, are a few of themes or questions which were covered in the lectures and which my students consequently suggested that I should … Continue reading North Korea: Examination Materials

Could North Korea Survive Without the Kim Cult?

In the early summer of 1945, various American military planners bobbed through Pacific typhoons, paced humid Sichuan airfields, and filled their War Department offices with tobacco smoke in anxiety, wondering what they would do with postwar Japan.  The end of World War II in Asia is primarily remembered for its horrifying conflagration of human flesh and the U.S. Air Force attacks on civilians, but the … Continue reading Could North Korea Survive Without the Kim Cult?

The Correspondent and His Typewriter: Keyes Beech in Northeast Asia in the 1950s

Foreign correspondents in East Asia in the late 1940s and early 1950s were a wild and wonderful bunch, but few were more incisive or entertaining than Keyes Beech. Perhaps because Beech had won a Pulitzer for his Korean War reporting, his writing was cocky and powerful; it has a verismo quality, and it is very 1950s. He went on to visit and cover communist China … Continue reading The Correspondent and His Typewriter: Keyes Beech in Northeast Asia in the 1950s