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Download The Chinese Ultimatum epub

by Edward McGhee,Robin Moore

Book by McGhee, Edward, Moore, Robin
Download The Chinese Ultimatum epub
ISBN: 0523404093
ISBN13: 978-0523404097
Category: Literature
Author: Edward McGhee,Robin Moore
Publisher: Pinnacle Books (April 1, 1980)
ePUB size: 1310 kb
FB2 size: 1106 kb
Rating: 4.1
Votes: 546
Other Formats: rtf mobi doc docx

For hardcore spy enthusiasts and far more dedicated Tom Clancy-esque crowds, this shall be a winner. For everyone else, you can find much more accessible and better dated spy fare (just read up the Top Ranking Spy novels on the Huffington Post type sites' lists). The book paces along but the details and pauses for exposition continually vary and test even the most patient person's time for a build-up that doesn't exaclty knock one's socks off. If you encounter it at a used book sale and need to find something for a relative who craves this type of reading, you can do worse but this isn't the kind of book that you truly have to label as a "Must-read."
We found our copy of "The Chinese Ultimatum" in a dusty corner of the attic (okay, not so dusty) with what appeared to be a bookstore receipt from 1977. The idea of reading some forgotten relic is always an appealing come-on for us at The Rotten Review - promising retro-thrills and (in the case of the 1970's) really, really bad sex. In neither respect did "Ultimatum" leave us hungry, but perhaps there is such a thing as too much of a good thing.

"Ultimatum" can be boiled down to the story of a massive Chinese/Soviet war and the myriad geopolitical shifts that war causes. The story is played out in the halls of the White House, the killing fields of the Far East and behind closed doors of other power brokers. When China and the Soviet Union are on the verge of another war (that others have been fought is only one of several salient geopolitical points that set the world of "Ultimatum" apart from our own), the Soviets throw everything they have into the mix, stripping their armies in Europe to supply the massed force arrayed against massed waves of Chinese troops. The Russians have technology on their side, while the PRoC has numbers and shorter lines of communication. Being closer to home has its advantages, and the Russians aren't the odds-on favorite to come out of the war. Sensing that the time is right, the Soviets' satellites in Europe sense the time is ripe for escape. Though some (Bulgaria) remain steadfast in support of the Soviet bloc, other client states appear to have planned in ahead for this very set of circumstances. With the Soviets facing military disaster in the east and secession in Europe, the rest of the world wonders at how far Moscow will go without resorting to the nuclear option. In the White House, the president grills his staff and his generals about the state of the war and how to navigate America through the international upheavals spreading from it.

"Ultimatum" was a fun book, but eventually you may find yourself tiring of its formula - scenes in which characters discuss international events, enjoy sexual favors, enjoy fine foods, fight major armored battles and start the whole thing over again. Also, the authors throw so many changes in the shape of national borders and politics that you soon realize that anything is possible - as opposed to the real world where some limits are expected - and "Ultimatum" begins to look like a plausible vision of our own world than some other world that shares many of the same names.

It's best if you enjoy "Ultimatum" as a symbol of its times (though also a possible warning to present day America). Seen through that prism, the battle scenes are especially satisfying, and it's easier to laugh at the cheap sex scenes and the way that the authors concentrate on minutiae of high-priced cuisine as the rest of the world falls around them.

For an even better retro-70's novel, check out Erdman's "Last Days of America".
It is rare that any novel unabashedly makes clear the politically incorrect writing style that sees the world solely from the male point of view. Edward McGhee and Robin Moore in THE CHINESE ULTIMATUM tell of a world of tough-talking military men bashing their fists on a huge oaken table as they bark their orders to properly subservient lessers. Battles are described in all their gore just as if the reader were right there getting drenched in a carmine blanket. And women exist solely as eye candy for powerful men.
The plot is surprisingly intricate. A pre-unified Germany stages a coup, routing the Russian soldiers from a post-Nazi Germany so that Germany stands again as one nation. The Russian Premier, Kharkov, is foaming angry, and to complicate matters, he learns that the only reason the Germans had the nerve to unite their country was a secret deal that the Germans made with the Chinese. The German act was to be only the preliminary surprise assault by the Chinese against Russia. Kharkov feels that he has no choice but to launch a pre-emptive strike. He places the venerable Marshal Korzybski in charge of the attack. Korzybski was a graduate of the cordite and bullet school of war, an education bloodily learned at Stalingrad and Moscow. His plan is simple: a good defense means a better offense. He is quite willing to shed as many casualties as necessary to smash the Chinese threat for ever. His reckless attitude worries Kharkov, who correctly recognizes that the Chinese can afford monstrous losses that the Russians cannot. Ultimately, he is forced to replace Korzybski with a more conservative general. The war between the two countries is inconclusive, and by the novel's end an uneasy bloody status quo is reached.
The charm of the novel is distinctly masculine. The battle scenes are replete with guns shooting, shells landing, and individual soldiers on both sides performing heroically. The switch in scene from one sector of battle to another recreates the confusion that must reign on such a battlefield. What McGhee and Moore make abundantly clear is that modern war involves masses of troops smashing into each other in a manner not unlike the Crusaders bullying their way through massed Moslem ranks of the tenth century. Men die by the scores of thousands in such warfare. The lesson that McGhee and Moore teach us is that war is bloody and chaotic, and if any modern leader of any country forgets that, then reading THE CHINESE ULTIMATUM may prevent in real life what was only described in print.
The previous reviewer was spot on. I will just flesh out the plot. It is in a time of American decline and it is postulated that our NATO commitment is down to a corps or so and everyone else accordingly as Russian attention gets diverted east to China. The Russians and Chinese go at it along the Amur River in Siberia. The Germans launch a reunification coup, ousting NATO and the Warsaw Pact. The Russians cut a deal with them, splitting Poland up while a bloody stalemate ensues in Siberia. The Russians win some early battles but find themselves bogged down in a war of attrition against a billion plus Chinese. The Israelis run wild in the Mideast, securing a Phoenician type empire from Tripoli to Damascus! Yes, folks, it's a pretty alternate universe. But it reads cool and what-ifs should always be presented in this entertaining a fashion!