The blockade by the Japanese occupying army in China of the British and French settlements in the North China Treaty Port of Tientsin in June 1939 originated as a minor administrative dispute and escalated into a major international issue. This book examines why the incident was not resolved locally, the reasons for escalation and why a solution continued to be elusive. In charting the development of the crisis, emphasis is put on the interaction of a broad range of local, regional, national and international factors. These include the hostility engendered by Japan's occupation of China; the role of Tientsin in Japan's narcotics trade; a growing tendency within Japan to utilize any opportunity to blame western powers and particularly Britain for Japan's Chinese occupation woes; and British and French efforts to take advantage of the incident to pressure the United States to shore up their waning imperial interests in Asia by adopting a more overtly anti-Japanese stance.
A major theme of the study is the extent to which the course of this incident was affected by both Japan and Britain's insensitivity towards China and their inability to contain a determined and creative popular Chinese movement to reclaim a greater control over the course of their national destiny.
Acknowledgements Maps Preface Chapter 1: The Origins of the Tientsin Incident Chapter 2: The Outbreak of the Tientsin Incident Chapter 3: The Widening of the Crisis (1): The Economic Dimension Chapter 4: The Widening of the Crisis (2): The Political Dimension Chapter 5: From Tientsin to Tokyo Chapter 6: The Anti-British Movement in Japan Chapter 7: The Tokyo Conference (1): The Arita-Craigie Accord (15-24 July) Chapter 8: The Tokyo Conference (2): Police and Security Chapter 9: The Tokyo Conference (3): The Talks Break Down Chapter 10: Aftermath (August 1939-June 1940) Conclusion Bibliography Notes