Shanghai in the 1930s was one of the world's most dangerous cities, with kidnappings and murders as daily occurrences. British police officer E. W. Peters of the Shanghai Municipal Police leads the way down the city's dark lanes and alleys, through a crime-ridden underworld of brothels, opium dens, and gambling parlors. This often riotous, true-crime chronicle is filled with colorful criminals, fumbled police raids, and gross misunderstandings, one of which lands the author on trial for murder. Here, old Shanghai is depicted at its most exciting.
British Imperial Maritime Trade in the Nineteenth Century
Author: National Maritime Museum (Great Britain)
Publisher: Boydell Press
Britain's overseas Empire pre-eminently involved the sea. In a two-way process, ships carried travellers and explorers, trade goods, migrants to new lands, soldiers to fight wars and garrison colonies, and also ideas and plants that would find fertile minds and soils in other lands. These essays, deriving from a National Maritime Museum (London) conference, provide a wide-ranging and comprehensive picture of the activities of maritime empire. They discuss a variety of issues: maritime trades, among them the trans-Atlantic slave trade, Honduran mahogany for shipping to Britain, the movement of horses across the vast reaches of Asia and the Indian Ocean; the impact of new technologies as Empire expanded in the nineteenth century; the sailors who manned the ships, the settlers who moved overseas, and the major ports of the Imperial world; plus the role of the navy in hydrographic survey. BR Published in association with the National Maritime Museum. DAVID KILLINGRAY is Emeritus Professor of Modern History, Goldsmiths College London; MARGARETTE LINCOLN and NIGEL RIGBY are in the research department of the National Maritime Museum.
Putting the Kibosh on the Kaiser from the Bund: The British at Shanghai and the Great War: Penguin Special
Author: Robert Bickers
Publisher: Penguin UK
Category: Juvenile Fiction
After 1914, between tiffin and a day at the race track, the British in Shanghai enjoyed a life far removed from the horrors of the Great War. Shanghai's status as a treaty port - with its foreign concessions home to expatriates from every corner of the globe - made it the most cosmopolitan city in Asia. The city's inhabitants on either side of the conflict continued to mix socially to mix socially after the outbreak of war, the bond amongst foreign nationals being almost as strong as that between countrymen. But as news of the slaughter spread of the Far East, and in particular the sinking of the Lusitania, their ambivalence turned to antipathy.
W. E. Fairbairn and the Shanghai Municipal Police Reserve Unit
Author: Leroy Thompson
Publisher: Frontline Books
In turbulent Shanghai in the years between the World Wars, the International Settlement was a mercantile powerhouse that faced unrest from Communist labor unions, criminal gangs, spies, political agitators, armed kidnappers and assassins. Adjoining the Settlement were the French Concession and the Chinese city, both hotbeds of intrigue and crime themselves. Called the most sinful in the world, the Settlement relied on its police: the Shanghai Municipal Police, one of the most advanced forces in the world. After an incident in 1926 when the police fired upon demonstrators, which resulted in unrest and strikes, W. E. Fairbairn was charged with forming a specialized unit to deal with riots and armed encounters. The resulting Reserve Unit became the prototype for future SWAT teams, as it developed tactics for using snipers in barricade and hostage incidents, techniques for use of the submachine gun during raids, hostage rescue tactics, aggressive riot-dispersal tactics and various other tactical innovations. Out of the experiences of the unit came many of the techniques later taught by W. E. Fairbairn, E. A. Sykes, Pat O'Neill and others to the Commandos, Rangers, SOE, OSS, 1st Special Service Force and other Second World War elite units. Those same techniques still resonate today with special forces and police tactical units.
'This is a biography of a nobody that offers a window into an otherwise closed world. It is a life which manages to touch us all...' Empire Made Me Shanghai in the wake of the First World War was one of the world's most dynamic, brutal and exciting cities - an incredible panorama of nightclubs, opium-dens, gambling and murder. Threatened from within by communist workers and from without by Chinese warlords and Japanese troops, and governed by an ever more desperate British-dominated administration, Shanghai was both mesmerising and terrible.Into this maelstrom stepped a tough and resourceful ex-veteran Englishman to join the police. It is his story, told in part through his rediscovered photo-albums and letters, that Robert Bickers has uncovered in this remarkable, moving book.
This detailed study of the modern Chinese police force shows how the Nationalist forces under General Chiang Kai-shek set about to return Shanghai to Chinese rule, competing with the consular police forces of France, Japan and the International Settlement.