Between 1900 and 1908 the Chinese revolutionary leader, Sun Yat-sen, tried to obtain assistance from the French government for his movement to overturn the Manchu dynasty, and at one point he contacted a French army officer who gave the impression that such aid might be forthcoming. This connection between Sun Yat-sen and France, revealed in Sun's memoirs, has intrigued and puzzled historians who have been uncertain as to the policy behind this curious contact. However, French archival records reveal that the promise of assistance to Sun was ephemeral as the French government decided that its political and economic interests in Asia dictated against any support for an Asian revolutionary leader. Under pressure from the Imperial Chinese government French officials banished Sun Yat-sen from Indochina in 1908, thereby demonstrating a basic hostility toward revolutionary movements in Asia.

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