The Fight for Democracy in Asia

Courtesy Reuters

BURMA has fallen. Japan now holds a land wedge that threatens to split India and China apart entirely. By her successes in the Philippines she also has tightened her grip over communications in her home waters and along the coast of China. With courage and ingenuity, the United Nations can still improvise and maintain new communications with China -- certainly by air and probably also by land. President Roosevelt's promise to continue to get supplies to the armies of Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek can be carried out. Nevertheless it is clear that the fall of Burma has ended a phase of the war. In the new phase that will replace it the United Nations must overhaul their grand strategy and examine anew the concepts on which they base their coördination of land, sea and air power, of areas of industrial production, of lines of supply, and of actual fighting fronts.

In this new phase the political factor will determine the effectiveness of all other factors. Up till now, the undermining weakness of the United Nations, in the Pacific theater, has been that they have been fighting a makeshift war. There has been some confused discussion of the relative importance of the Eastern war and the Western war; but there has been no clear definition of what the war is about. Obviously, only men who know what a war is about can fight it successfully. Even if we restrict our war aims so narrowly as to speak only of a war of survival, it is necessary to know what is to survive.

First and foremost, this is a war about Asia. If the Axis nations were to win, there would be drastic revisions of the structure of power in Europe and America; but they would find their richest loot in Asia. This is as true in terms of the power to rule as it is in terms of raw materials. The core of Fascism is the dogma of master-men and subject-men; and

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