CONTROLLING THE WAVES

DEAN ACHESON AND U.S. FOREIGN POLICY IN ASIA

As the Clinton Administration prepares for a potential trade war with Japan, historian McGlothlen—drawing on interviews with contemporaries of former secretary of state Dean Acheson (Dean Rusk and Paul Nitze among them) and quoting from original policy memoranda—outlines in detail the evolution of US policy toward Japan's trading partners. First as undersecretary of state and later as secretary under Truman, Acheson, says McGlothlen, viewed America's Asia policy not as one of containment but rather as an essential element of Japan's postwar recovery. Japan was the ``workshop'' of Asia, dependent upon the other countries of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere—Korea, China, Taiwan, and Indochina- -for raw materials such as oil, iron, and coal, as well as for food to feed its growing population. Only by rebuilding Japan's delicate balance of trade with its Asian neighbors could the US ensure its control over ``every wave in the Pacific Ocean'' and continue to expand its own trade in the region while protecting itself from the drain of the collapsed Japanese economy. Acheson sought Japan's economic and political security by revising reparations obligations, replacing the US military economic staff, and negotiating a final, less burdensome, peace treaty. But these efforts, McGlothlen argues, brought about more than Japan's stability: They also drew the US into conflicts in South Korea (which provided much of the food for Japan) and in Vietnam (which, as China turned Communist, became an important export market). And Taiwan became an Asian linchpin as well, dominating Japan's trade routes. It's ironic, McGlothlen notes, that Japan's economy—rebuilt at great American expense—has risen up to challenge the US trade dominance that Acheson's plans were designed to protect. A provocative and—given our concern about an imbalance of trade with Japan—unusually relevant examination.

Pub Date: June 14, 1993

ISBN: 0-393-03520-4

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Norton

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 1993

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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DEAR MR. HENSHAW

Possibly inspired by the letters Cleary has received as a children's author, this begins with second-grader Leigh Botts' misspelled fan letter to Mr. Henshaw, whose fictitious book itself derives from the old take-off title Forty Ways W. Amuse a Dog. Soon Leigh is in sixth grade and bombarding his still-favorite author with a list of questions to be answered and returned by "next Friday," the day his author report is due. Leigh is disgruntled when Mr. Henshaw's answer comes late, and accompanied by a set of questions for Leigh to answer. He threatens not to, but as "Mom keeps nagging me about your dumb old questions" he finally gets the job done—and through his answers Mr. Henshaw and readers learn that Leigh considers himself "the mediumest boy in school," that his parents have split up, and that he dreams of his truck-driver dad driving him to school "hauling a forty-foot reefer, which would make his outfit add up to eighteen wheels altogether. . . . I guess I wouldn't seem so medium then." Soon Mr. Henshaw recommends keeping a diary (at least partly to get Leigh off his own back) and so the real letters to Mr. Henshaw taper off, with "pretend," unmailed letters (the diary) taking over. . . until Leigh can write "I don't have to pretend to write to Mr. Henshaw anymore. I have learned to say what I think on a piece of paper." Meanwhile Mr. Henshaw offers writing tips, and Leigh, struggling with a story for a school contest, concludes "I think you're right. Maybe I am not ready to write a story." Instead he writes a "true story" about a truck haul with his father in Leigh's real past, and this wins praise from "a real live author" Leigh meets through the school program. Mr. Henshaw has also advised that "a character in a story should solve a problem or change in some way," a standard juvenile-fiction dictum which Cleary herself applies modestly by having Leigh solve his disappearing lunch problem with a burglar-alarmed lunch box—and, more seriously, come to recognize and accept that his father can't be counted on. All of this, in Leigh's simple words, is capably and unobtrusively structured as well as valid and realistic. From the writing tips to the divorced-kid blues, however, it tends to substitute prevailing wisdom for the little jolts of recognition that made the Ramona books so rewarding.

Pub Date: Aug. 22, 1983

ISBN: 143511096X

Page Count: 133

Publisher: Morrow/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Oct. 16, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 1983

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