By Michael A. Krysko

Interwar period efforts to extend US radio into China floundered within the face of fallacious US rules and ways. located on the intersection of media reviews, know-how reports, and US international relatives, this learn frames the ill-fated radio tasks as symptomatic of an more and more US-East Asian dating earlier than the Pacific struggle.

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Additional info for American Radio in China: International Encounters with Technology and Communications, 1919-41 (Palgrave Studies in the History)

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Chiang succeeded in reunifying China by 1928. 64 The new government immediately signaled its intention to cancel all the controversial radio contracts. Chiang’s regime would instead pursue new agreements that definitively brought China’s international radio traffic under Chinese control. In 1928, a near-delusional Schwerin unsuccessfully tried to persuade Harbord that better days for Federal were still ahead. RCA president James Harbord would hear nothing of it and ended the partnership. “[T]he Radio Corporation of America,” Harbord wrote, “is not willing to advance any more money or to authorize any expenditure for any further negotiations in China” on behalf of the Federal contracts.

The Federal Telegraph controversy demonstrated that for all its problems, China did not react passively to the “Great Power” politics that impinged upon the country. Comparable to earlier strategies that challenged the foreign introduction of the railroad and telegraph into China, the admittedly weak Chinese instead sought to influence the course of events by utilizing whatever the options and alternatives were available. indd 39 2/18/2011 6:28:26 PM 40 American Radio in China Federal Telegraph and its government backers never seriously grappled with Chinese nationalistic concerns.

Finding investors willing to risk their capital for a contract mired in international protest in a country wracked by chronic instability, civil war, and a history of defaulting on its bonds proved difficult. “I regret to say that I have not found among American bankers any particular or enthusiastic desire to invest in China,” Federal President Rennie Schwerin lamented to Hughes. 33 Fortunately for Schwerin, in the summer of 1922 RCA decided to partner with Federal in a joint venture. To RCA, the risks appeared manageable.

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