Deadly Dreams: Opium, Imperialism and the Arrow War by J.Y. Wong

By J.Y. Wong

Many have permitted that the Arrow conflict (1856-60) was once as a result of an insult to the British flag belonging to the pirate boat Arrow. Dr. Wong argues that Britain's reliance at the opium exchange with China performed a miles larger position in pushing the diplomatic clash into warfare. The warfare was once now not an easy diplomatic squabble: it concerned important monetary pursuits in British India, which needed to be secure in any respect charges. Dr. Wong bargains penetrating insights into theories of imperialism and the way they could be reassessed.

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Di'erci yapian zhanzheng (The Second Opium War), written by a collection of anonymous officially chosen historians (Shanghai, Renmin chubanshe, 1972), p. 15. 44. , pp. 15-16. 45. Tong, United States Diplomacy in China, p. 186. 48 II. The bewildering issues But what lay behind all this? Where may we find the origins of the Arrow War? The chief antagonist of the British, Commissioner Yeh, has always been depicted by the British as a monster, as if the war were entirely his responsibility. The British prime minister, Lord Palmers ton,49 for instance, called him 'one of the most savage barbarians that ever disgraced a nation.

34. Notification by Commander Foote of the United States Navy, 29 October 1856, Parl. Papers 1857, v. 12, pp. 100-1. 35. See Tong Te-kong, United States Diplomacy in China, 1844-1860 (Seattle, University of Washington Press, 1964), p. 186. S. consul at Canton was Oliver H. Perry. S. 38 Who was correct, the consul or the commander? S. S. warship. S. flag had been insulted. S. 44 At a time when the Americans were already leaving the Britons at Canton to fend for themselves, it is intriguing that an incident which completely nullified Commissioner Yeh's diplomatic coup should have occurred.

128. Malmesbury, 26 February 1857, Hansard, 3d series, v. 144, cols. 1346-7 . 129. The blue books listed under this heading are no. 2173, entitled, 'Correspondence Relative to Entrance into Canton, 1850-5'; no. 2164, 'Correspondence Relative to the Operations in the Canton River, April 1847'; and no. 2172, 'Further Correspondence Relative to the Operations in the Canton River', in Parl. Papers 1857, v. 12, pp. 1-50. The blue books listed under the heading 'Bombardment of Canton' are also relevant.

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