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By Nicholas Tarling

This booklet describes British coverage in Southeast Asia within the early years of worldwide conflict II. With its army power directed opposed to Germany, Britain drew on diplomatic assets to take care of its energy within the zone and to restrict the japanese risk. The booklet specializes in Britain's family with the US, Dutch India, the Philippines, French Indo-China and Thailand. Nicholas Tarling's large research of British documents, and documentary fabric at the international regulations of alternative states makes this a huge reinterpretation of the origins of the Pacific struggle.

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Sample text

The changes of the early twentieth century, particularly of the period immediately after World War I, added to the strategic importance of Singapore. It became the second home of the one-ocean navy that now had to fulfil two-ocean commitments. It became, under the Washington agreements, a forward base for British naval power in the Far East. Whether a navy could be placed there in an Eastern crisis came, however, to be doubted as the crisis in Europe prompted by the reassertion of German power developed during the 1930s and as Italian ambitions grew.

B. Harrison asked]. Must it conform exactly to American standards of government? If that is to be the test, must it conform to what we Americans would like to be, or to what we know of our institutions in actual practice? ""' In practice politics determined the answer to these questions. Republican administrations tended to slow the pace to Filipinisation, Democrat to increase it. The Filipino elite was itself ambivalent. In some ways it was better to travel than to arrive. They increased their power within the islands while calling for independence.

116 By July 1933 Quezon was toying with the idea of entering the British Commonwealth. He was reported to have said at a private dinner that 'if the Philippine Islands were so unfortunate as to become independent within a year or two, he would go himself to London to ask the British Government to admit the Islands into the British Commonwealth of Nations, if possible with Dominion status. He said this would give them almost complete freedom, and also security as a unit of the Empire .. ' The best way of avoiding a power vacuum was the permanent retention of the US bases, but American opinion tended to total withdrawal.

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