Chinese ruler Chairman Mao Zedong was one of the most important leaders of the 20th century. He was one of two communists titan who defined the age. But there is one unknown aspect of his life – he had a lifelong friendship with somebody who was born in the USA, China’s capitalist enemy.

The new issue of History is Now magazine is out now. And our main article tells the story of this lifelong friendship that would go on to influence the Cold War.

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And here is what our editor has to say about the new issue…

This month’s issue starts with a fascinating article on Chinese leader Mao Zedong’s American friend, Edgar Snow. Snow was a young American journalist living in China in the 1930s when he was selected to meet Mao and his rebel forces. This extraordinary article goes on to chart their relationship not only during the time when Mao was a revolutionary seeking power, but also when Mao assumed power in all of China. Our second article is another piece of fascinating writing. It charts the story of Lionel Wigram, a man who developed revolutionary military training in the British Army and went on to lead a very unique Anglo-Italian fighting force in World War II. And then we’re back to the Cold War in the article after that. In it, we consider the case of Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov. Markov became an exile from his Communist homeland and dared to continue to criticize Bulgaria’s leader when he was in the West. Despite Markov being based in London, there were a number of attempts on his life

Next up is an article on an idyllic English village that was evacuated during World War II. However, the village was evacuated for reasons that you may not expect. Rather than German airplanes driving people from their homes, it was the British Army. Following that, we continue our look at the Bay of Pigs Invasion. The invasion by a group of Cuban rebels based in the US sought to topple Communist Fidel Castro from his position as leader of Cuba. In this article, we look at how the battle progressed and how the rebels fought off repeated waves of attacks from Communist forces before the assault ended.

Finally, as we all know, 2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I, and with that in mind, we will have a number of World War I articles this year. First up is an interactive essay on a largely unknown aspect of the Eastern Front. The Battle of Lake Naroch was a major battle with disastrous consequences for one of the sides involved. By the way, an ‘interactive essay’ features text accompanied by many images as well as videos.

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George Levrier-Jones


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