The eight-year War of Resistance, 1937-1945, witnessed the catastrophic decline of the Kuomintang's fortunes and the striking improvement of the Chinese Communist Party's prospects. Yet the causal role of the war in the collapse of the KMT regime and the Communist victory is problematical. With regard to the CCP's success, powerful arguments hold that the Japanese invasion, with its accompanying social abuses, gave rise to new forces of "peasant nationalism, " which the Chinese Communist Party was able to harness to its own ends. 1 As for the KMT, it is widely assumed that the wartime dislocations forced upon the Nanking regime — the loss of prewar revenue bases, the economic and psychological distress caused by long exile in the underdeveloped interior, the rampant inflation caused by material shortages and the hopeless inadequacy of government revenues — produced pressures with which the Nationalists could not cope and thus dealt a fatal blow to a regime which otherwise might have been able to regain its balance after the war. 2