Asia Betrayed

John Bell Smithback

How Churchill Sacrificed the Far East to Save England

“Somebody knew. Who knew?“ Did Winston Churchill lure Japan into attacking Pearl Harbor as a cynical ruse to pull the United States into the war against the Nazis to save England? Did he deliberately weaken the defenses of Singapore and Hong Kong to convince the Japanese to jump? Did he even run a double spy to feed information to Tokyo? John Bell Smithback examines the evidence in a shocking new assessment of the origins and backstory of one of the turning points of the twentieth century—the Pacific War 1941 to 1945. He looks at Churchill's role in how Japan came to make one of the biggest strategic errors in history, and the horrific consequences for tens of millions of people across East Asia.

Praise for Asia Betrayed

“Smithback writes engrossing history. This is the long, startling tale of Churchill’s misjudgments and, yes, betrayals of Asians as the war with Japan drew near. In the telling, Smithback displays a fine command of history’s sweep as well as its granular detail, much of which will fascinate. This is the best kind of history—rendered by a writer in comfortable command of his material and with a style that draws readers in—and then keeps them reading.” — Patrick Lawrence, Foreign Affairs columnist, The Nation

“Absolutely gripping! Thanks for teaching me so much! ” — Alan Riding, author of And The Show Went On: Cultural Life In Nazi Occupied Paris

“The failure of the Western leaders to consider the possibility of a Japanese land invasion and the effective abandonment of Southeast Asia is detailed in this serious and angry account. You could \\argue that they had much to worry about elsewhere, but they ignored clear signs of danger. An amazing book.” — Frances Wood, author of The Silk Road