Red China's Fighting Hordes by Lt. Col. Robert B. Rigg
Harrisburg, PA. : Military Service Publishing Company, 1952. Second Printing, Revised. Hardcover. 378 pages ; Illustrated, photograph ; 23 cm. Price-clipped dust jacket with 1' tear at the head of the jacket spine. Name & address rubber stamped on front free endpaper. Pages are clean and unmarked. Binding is firm.
RED CHINA'S FIGHTING HORDES
By Lt. Col. Robert B. Rigg, U. S. Army
No longer is Russian armed might the sole threat to the peace of the world. Another potent Communist force has arisen—in China. Soviet-trained, tough, ruthless, battle-tested, confident, the Chinese Communist Army seeks to dominate Asia.
In 1944 this army existed only in the minds of the ragged Communist guerrillas who, in the far-off caves of Yenan, formed grandiose plans for conquest. Six years later its ochre hordes had dominated China and were sweeping into Korea, challenging the United Nations. How in so short a time did the Chinese Red Army become so powerful, so cocky?
Colonel Rigg saw these events in person; he takes the reader through the birth pains of this army, now nearly three million strong with a huge militia reserve and with countless hordes of peasant laborers forced to support its rear services.
Rigg describes the pitiless brutality that has been an essential part of the remarkable metamorphosis, and the violent, sustained propaganda that has inflamed both leader and Jed. He tells of the China Civil War, the "phony" invasion of Tibet, the training now in progress to invade Formosa.
The military reader will find this book a straightforward, realistic description of the army's strengths and weaknesses, the character of its men and commanders, its weapons, its tactics and "shoestring" logistics, its organization, training, indoctrination, and future development. Colonel Rigg believes this army, even though it is willing to lose a million "expendable" soldiers a year, can be de-feated—and suggests how.
The reader interested in more than military aspects will find much that will help him understand the dynamic power of communism rampant among the underprivileged of Asia. This book is MUST reading for the well-informed citizen.
About the Author :
Twice arrested by the Soviets and jailed by the Chinese Communists, Colonel Rigg has seen intimately both communism and the Red Chinese army. As assistant military attache in China he witnessed the exciting years of 1945-48. Colonel Rigg saw the Soviet occupation of Manchuria in 1945-46 and for a time was the only American observer with Marshal Vasilevsky's forces.
Captured on the Sungari front in 1947, Colonel Rigg and his assistant, Major John W. Collins, III, spent 34 days in solitary confinement in Harbin, where they were placed on trial by the Chinese Reds, with many charges, including espionage. Because Rigg knew Li Li-san (now Red Minister of Labor), he and Collins were tried by a military tribunal rather than a People's Court, thereby escaping a probable death sentence. General Marshall interceded to secure their release.
Colonel Rigg has seen much of Asia and its peoples. In 1942 he was selected to go with Soviet Cossack units in Azerbaijan. In 1943 when the Axis was dropping parachutist spies and saboteurs among the Kurdish tribesmen of the Middle East, Rigg was there to counter German efforts to incite a revolt.
He was the American observer in Iraq during Mulla Mustapha's rebellion. He is known to Arab chieftains in Iraq and Turcoman nomads of Iran, as well as in the yurts of Inner Mongolia.
He began his military career by joining the Illinois National Guard in 1935, when he became a member of the Black Horse Troop of Chicago. Bob Rigg enjoys excitement. In the 1930's he entertained Midwest audiences with a revival of jousting—duels in armor that cost him and his soldier colleagues broken bones. When this activity was banned in his National Guard unit, he trained a group in Cossack stunt riding—picking up handkerchiefs at the gallop and saber-in-the-teeth obstacle riding. This "sport" too, was banned. In 1940 he was commissioned. Soon after, while serving in a mechanized unit, his realistic combat problems resulted in his injury and temporary blindness.
Colonel Rigg has served in armor and mechanized units and with the General Staff. In 1951 he participated in "Operation Greenhouse" in the South Pacific. He is a graduate of the Armored School and of the Command and General Staff College.
Colonel Rigg has sound judgment and a perceptive mind; he is a skilled observer and military analyst. He possesses to an unusual degree the ability to evaluate what he sees—and to describe it for others. The book's pen and ink sketches and the jacket design are also the work of this versatile officer.
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