Why did the Chinese empire collapse and why did it take so long for a new government to reunite China? Modern Chinese Warfare, 1795-1989 seeks to answer these questions by exploring the most important domestic and international conflicts over the past two hundred years, from the last half of the Qing empire through to modern day China. It reveals how most of China's wars during this period were fought to preserve unity in China, and examines their distinctly cyclical pattern of imperial decline, domestic chaos and finally the creation of a new unifying dynasty.
By 1989 this cycle appeared complete, but the author asks how long this government will be able to hold power. Exposing China as an imperialist country, and one which has often manipulated western powers in its favour, Bruce Elleman seeks to redress the views of China as a victimised nation.