At long last my military history of China has been published! If you haven't been following along for the last 15 months or so, here is the description:
China is using its economic might and growing military strength to challenge America's long-standing hegemony. Yet besides the posturing and high-tech weapons, the West knows very little about China's military culture or history. This book helps fill that gap by offering a comprehensive yet compact study of China's military strengths and weaknesses, from the timeless maxims of Sun Tzu to the guerilla warfare pioneered by Mao Zedong.
Walls of Men provides a detailed examination of the factors shaping the Chinese way of war over more than 4,000 years. More than just a dry recitation of battles and rulers, this book is willing to challenge the conventional narratives. Why did China forfeit its edge in military technology? How could the declining Ch'ing Dynasty survive the Taiping Rebellion, sustaining a death toll greater than the entire U.S. population at the time? Was Chiang Kai-shek actually a gifted commander and strategist? What can China's most recent conflicts tell us about the state of its military power today? Has the Three Generation Problem of leadership finally been solved?
Only by studying the culture, geography, weapons, and beliefs of the dynastic cycles that have shaped China's history can we hope to understand the China of today.
Obviously, one can't dig too deep when covering thousands of years of history in 360 pages, but I think I struck the right balance between detail and keeping things moving. As with my other writing, when I found myself getting bored writing it, I figured the reader would be feeling the same way.