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Chinese Spies Reviews

Chinese Spies by Roger Faligot, Natasha Lehrer

Chinese Spies

From Chairman Mao to Xi Jinping

Roger Faligot, Natasha Lehrer

Score pending

2 reviews

Imprint: C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
Publisher: C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
Publication date: 1 Jun 2019
ISBN: 9781787380967

In 1920s Shanghai, Zhou Enlai founded the first Chinese communist spy network, operating in the shadows against nationalists, Western powers and the Japanese.

3 stars out of 5
23 Jul 2019

"an encyclopedic knowledge of the history of China’s spy agencies"

A French journalist and longtime China watcher, Faligot has an encyclopedic knowledge of the history of China’s spy agencies. In an area where so much of even the distant historical record is strictly off-limits, his extensive research will be useful to academics. Although some general readers might be put off by the meticulous descriptions of different bureaus and their responsibilities, it also contains many fascinating stories.


3 stars out of 5
Rana Mitter
30 Jun 2019

"A French journalist looks at the global reach of the Guoanbu, ‘China’s KGB’"

Faligot’s book is fluently translated by Natasha Lehrer and is impressive in its level of detail, although the understandable lack of named sources is frustrating at times. It leaves the reader in limbo as to what will be the real significance of China’s growing spy network in the next few years. During the Cold War, the struggle was between hugely different western and Soviet models of the world, with each seeking to convert the other. Faligot’s account implies that the Chinese have more limited purposes.