Filling the Void: Anglo-American Strategic Relations, Philippine Independence, and the Containment of Japan, 1932-1937

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Abstract

The declaration in 1932 of the United States to allow Philippine independence in March 1934 was an act that had a number of unintended consequences for the stability of the Far Eastern balance of power system. Given the state of tension existing in the international system between the major actors in the region: Japan, China, the Soviet Union, Great Britain and the United States, any movement in the existing boundaries of the international spheres
of influence between them could generate a significant destabilizing reaction. The American proposal to allow Philippine independence was such an act. If America surrendered its position and interests in the Philippines, who would replace it? What would happen if it was not replaced? Was it realistic, given the nature of the international competition for resources and strategic position, all linked to the creation and use of maritime power, that the Philippines could exist ‘on its own..’. This essay will analyse how the United States and Great Britain dealt with this instability, as well as how those interactions allowed a closer and more harmonious Anglo-American informal strategic relationship to be developed. That relationship would thereafter evolve into a collaborative alliance aimed at deterring further Japanese expansion.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)836-859
Number of pages23
JournalINTERNATIONAL HISTORY REVIEW
Volume39
Issue number5
Early online date9 Feb 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Oct 2017

Keywords

  • Anglo-American Relations
  • Far East
  • Interwar period

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