Kangzhan: Guide to Chinese Ground Forces 1937-45 is the first ready reference to the organization and armament of Chinese ground forces during the Sino-Japanese War of 1937-45. The work integrates Chinese, Japanese and Western sources to examine the details of the structure and weapons of the period. Recent scholarship has contributed greatly to our understanding of China's role in the war, but this is the first book to deal with the bottom-level underpinnings of this massive army, crucial to an understanding of its tactical and operational utility.
An introductory chapter discusses the military operations in China, often given short shrift in World War II histories. The work then traces the evolution of the national army's organizational structure from the end of the Northern Expedition to the conclusion of World War II. Included are tables of organization and strength reports for the wartime period.
The armament section illustrates and details not only the characteristics of the many and varied weapons used in China, many seen nowhere else, but also their acquisition and such local production as was undertaken. This is complemented by a chapter on the arsenals and their evolution and production programs.
The Chinese army was one of the largest of the war and it, and Japan's, fought longer than any other. It faced unique challenges, including fragmented loyalties, huge expanses of territory, poor logistics networks, inadequate arms supplies, and, often, incompetence and corruption. Nevertheless, they fought bravely in major battles through 1941 and were able to counterpunch effectively in important regions through the rest of the war. Aimed at both military historians and wargamers, this work fills an important gap in our understanding of this, the most under-appreciated army of the war.
Leland Ness received a degree in Oriental Studies from the University of Arizona and served twenty-eight years in the US Army's reserves in infantry and intelligence, including active duty for Desert Storm. He published an industry-oriented newsletter on ground ordnance for fifteen years and served as an editor for the annuals Jane's Ammunition Handbook and Jane's Infantry Weapons 2003-2013. He is the author of WWII Tanks and Fighting Vehicles, Handbook of the Red Army (with Steven Zaloga), and Rikugun - Guide to Japanese Ground Forces. Bin Shih was born on Taiwan of parents from Fujian province. After graduation from National Chen Kung University he served as an infantry officer in Taiwan's Army. Living in the US since 1984, his interest in firearms led him to create the premier web site on modern Chinese firearms. His book China's Small Arms of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945) proved the definitive work on the subject and was published in Taiwan in 2005, in China in 2009 and the English edition in the US in 2011.