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Title: Back Channel Diplomacy and the Sino-German relationship, 1939-1945
Author: Glang, Nele
ISNI:       0000 0004 5356 6956
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2014
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This dissertation employs a combination of diplomatic and intelligence history to challenge established narratives about the relations between Nationalist China and the Third Reich during WWII. This approach allows for the exploration of how Chiang Kai-shek’s wartime diplomacy influenced Chinese foreign policy in regards to the Axis Powers. Archival documents reveal that in the fight for China’s survival pragmatism, rather than ideology, was the most important force behind Chiang Kai-shek’s foreign policy strategy. As earlier research has shown, Republican Chinese foreign policy had many pragmatic traits, and in this project it becomes evident that diplomatic communication was maintained by Chiang Kai-shek with as many countries as possible. This foreign policy approach was influenced by the experience of having unreliable allies throughout the 1920s and 1930s. This approach resulted in the maintenance of communication with Germany, even beyond the crucial official break in diplomatic relations between the two countries in July 1941. This project explores how clandestine back channels emerged as the preferred tool for fostering Sino-German relations, and how these back channels continued from 1942 until 1945 in Switzerland. Special envoys with intelligence links, appointed by Chiang Kai-shek, conversed with representatives of the German party intelligence service, the RSHA, and with the German Resistance movement of 20 July 1944. These back channels reflected Chiang Kai-shek’s pragmatic foreign policy, and these connections subsequently contributed to the difficulties that arose between the Western Allies and China at the end of the war.
Supervisor: Dryburgh, Marjorie ; Taylor, Jeremy Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available