Sunday, August 08, 2010

Books: The imperial cruise : a true story of empire and war / by James Bradley

The imperial cruise : a true story of empire and war / by James Bradley

I picked the book up thinking it was about the World Cruise of the Royal Navy in 1923 which took my father to many countries. But it is about the 1905 diplomacy voyage on which Teddy Roosevelt sent his daughter Alice and the Secertary of War Taft to the far east.

James Bradley (author) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia also wrote Flags of our Fathers which covered WW2 and I have seen the Clint Eastwood film. James is very concerned about the impact on his father's generation of WW2 and in this new book
he lays the blame on Teddy Roosevelt and his encouragement of Japan in 1905.

The Imperial Cruise by James Bradley - Reviews, Discussion, Bookclubs, Lists ( star ratings) for some good comments on the book.

Yes its PC history BUT a lot of what he says seem justified. It is not just a history of 1905 he goes back to the Mexican War and 1853 Perry threat to Japan. His point is a racism in American policy and because the Japanese decided to become industrialised and started wearing western suits including top hats that USA was convinced they were above the other Asian countries. Then LeGendre advised Japan to take over Okinawa and Taiwen and Korea. Bradley seems to say that all was peace in Asia before the USA intervened - he does not mention the invasions of Korea by Japan in the 1590s.

The whole push of the book is that Roosevelt conducted secret and illegal agreements with Japan. He seems to imply he has seen confirmation of this and yet we are also told that Roosevelt continually wanted assuances that Japan would not attack the Phillipines. The book also goes into the horrible mess of USA involvement in the Phillipines.

It seems that Teddy Roosevelt was not altogether as wise he he appeared in Ron's "reviews": David Fromkin’s new book: The King and the Cowboy when he was dealing with the Kaiser and King Edward in Europe.

Bradley's book is very readable history. And you can follow the romance of Alice Roosevelt. All comes to a rather sad end.

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