Study sets, textbooks, questions
Upgrade to remove ads
History P1: Japanese Expansionism (1931-41)
Terms in this set (69)
Originsof Japanese Militarism and Nationalism
Determination to transform Japan into a Western-style power, which was linked to the desire to gain equality with the Western powers.
Japan's belief that is would become the leader of Asia
The need to obtain raw materials and secure markets in East Asia
The need for strategic security
Actions of Western powers
Growing support for militarism and expansionism within Japan
These factors also promoted an imperialist foreign policy as Japan took over Asian territories in pursuit of its nationalist goals. Also linked with militarism because Japanese expansionism was dependent on the military taking action and making political decisions.
Why did Japanese Nationalism begin?
Japanese nationalism began in the second-half of the 19th century. Prior to this Japan was an isolated civilisation to protect itself from the perceived threat of Christianity (policy of Japan's rulers, the Shogun).
American naval officer, Commodore Matthew Perry, arrived in Japan to forge a trade agreement with Japan.
Intimidated by Perry and his "Black ships", Japan signed the Treaty of Kanagawa with the USA. As a result of the treaty, political power was returned to the emperor (Meji Restoration), whose government began dismantling the feudal system and established a limited democracy.
Reforms due to Meji Restoration
There were major reforms in all industries; fashion, education and most significantly, military. The military went through a process of modernisation, which included adapting German military tactics and the creation of a new navy with the assistance of the British. This lead to Japan's victory over China in the Sino-Japanese War (1894-95), thus positioning Japan as a world power.
Treaty of Shimonoseki
The Treaty of Shimonoseki (1895), following the First Sino-Japanese War, gave the Pescadores Islands, Formosa and Liadong Peninsula to Japan, recognised Korean independence and obliged China to pay a large indemnity to open additional ports and negotiate a commercial treaty.
Triple Intervention (1895) - As a result of the First Sino-Japanese War, Germany, Russia and France forced Japan to give up Liadong Peninsula. Japan was further infuriated when Russia took the Liadong Peninsula and Germany took Shandong Province.
France and Britain After First Sino-Japanese War
France and Britain manipulated changing positions of power in Asia by seizing China's port cities.
Growth of Japanese Militarism and Nationalism After the First Sino-Japanese War
The growth of Japanese militarism and nationalism was encouraged by the gaining of land and frustration of surrendering land to the West, which were effects of the Sino-Japanese War. The idea that a strong military was necessary for Japan to become a world power and defend against Western power (Russia) encouraged the growth of nationalism and militarism in Japan. Japanese military expansionism increased in 1895 to 1905. The political ministers were overrun by the highest ranking sergeants of the military and navy.
The Amur River Society was a patriotic society established to promote the idea of Japanese expansion on the mainland.
Why was Manchuria Important to Japan?
Area of China closest to Japan
4 times larger than the Japanese Islands
Agriculturally rich with mineral resources
Living space for the rapidly growing Japanese population
Physical buffer against Russia
Anglo-Japanese Alliance is signed between Britain and Japan, which ended Japan's diplomatic isolation and was the first military alliance between a Western and non-Western nation.
Japan launches surprise attack against the Russians following clashes over their interests in Korea and Manchuria (Russo-Japanese War).
Russia forced to accept Treaty of Portsmouth, which resulted in Japan gaining control of Korea and South Manchuria and railway rights in Manchuria and the southern half of Sakhalin Island. Japan also gained respect from the West and other Asian countries. There were concerns within Japan about the impact of such imperialism due to the impact of the cost of war on the economy and the need to defend new colonies demanded a stronger navy and fleet.
How did Japan Benefit from the First World War? (German territories)
Japan demanded German colonial territories in China, and when this demand was ignored, Japan declared war on Germany, seizing Germany's military bases on the Shandong Peninsula in 1914. Whilst Japan's navy occupied Germany's South Pacific possessions.
Following the First World War, Japan issued "Twenty-One Demands" on China, which involved China agreeing to the Japanese remaining in Shandong and to grant extra commercial privileges in Manchuria. These demands angered the USA and Britain, as well as the Japanese Government, resulting in the demands being modified.
Economic Benefits of the First World War
Japan took advantage of the First World War by supplying goods to the Allies and filled the demands of Asian markets that the Allies were unable to fulfil.
Bolshevik Revolution - the Japanese sent 70,000 men (originally was only going to send 7,500) to support the Whites in the Russian Civil war against the Red Army of Bolsheviks. However, they were eventually defeated by the Bolsheviks in 1922. The whole venture encouraged mistrust of Japan in the USA and Britain. There were also attacks on the Japanese Government because of the cost of intervention, loss of prestige and failure to control the army.
Results of WW1 for Japan
Japan secured former German Pacific Islands and Germany's former economic privileges on the Shandong Peninsula. This established Japan as an economic power in Asia and the main naval power in the Western Pacific. However, Japan was not able to get racial equality clauses in the Charter of the League of Nations.
Japanese Intentions in the 1920s
During the 1920's, Japanese foreign policy changed to one of internationalism influenced by Shidehara Kijuoro (US Ambassador - 1921 and foreign minister - 1924-27 and 1929-31). Japan's 2 main aims were to develop good relation with the USA and further economic advancement in China.
Washington Treaty System
1921 - the Anglo-Japanese alliance expands to a 4-power agreement (USA, Britain, Japan and France) at the Washington Conference.
1922, a 9-power agreement is formed whose signatories are to respect Chinese 'sovereignty'.
1922 - 5-power naval treaty restricted competition in battleships and aircraft carriers.
This formed the Washington Treaty System and indicated that Japan was committed to international cooperation.
Reforms in the 1920s
Japan adopted a 'Taisho democracy' in which those gaining political power were doing so due to experience rather than status. In 1925, all adult males were given the right to vote.
Prime Minister Hara's Government (1918 - 1921) introduced social and economic reforms, military was contained and led Japan into the League of Nations.
Problems for Japan in the 1920s: Fragile Democracy
Financial scandals, election law violations and political party relations with big business and landlords in the country eroded public support and evoked suspicion. The passing of laws that extended the franchise and limited the public's right to engage in open discussion, indicated a dilemma in the Meji Government as to how much political freedom to allow.
Problems for Japan in the 1920s: Growing Economic Crisis
The economic boom of the war only lasted until 1921, resulting in the devopment of unemployment and industrial unrest. When workers tried to organise themselves politically, they were supressed by the police. This further increased public dissatisfaction with the political system. Further economic depression occurred in 1929 with the Wall Street Crash in the USA.
Problems for Japan in the 1920s: Foreign Policy
The Washington Treaty System was viewed as a betrayal of Japan's interests. USA limited immigration from all countries to 150,000 per year, which was largely seen as provocation from the West. The new emperor Hirohito revived nationalism and the idea of Japan's destiny in the world.
Political Instability in China
China was defeated by the British in the Opium Wars (1839-42 and 1856-60), and as a result European powers gained economic, military and legal privileges in China. Japan saw European powers sharing out the spoils of China and Japan was concerned that it would lose out if they didn't stake claims on the mainland. Japan also didn't want other powers gaining control in Korea and China as it believed its security was dependant on having dominant influence in those areas. Further instability was caused in China by the rivalry between its two major political parties: Guomindong Nationalist Party (GMD) and the Communist Party of China (CCP).
Views on Japan vs. USA
1. War was inevitable because Japan aimed to dominate Asia and delayed international response.
2. Japan was willing to negotiate to achieve aims, therefore war was not inevitable.
3. USA and Britain forced Japan into war as they wanted control.
Causes of Expansionism
By the 1930s, Japan was modernised (keep up with the West)
Nationalism and militarism was popular with Japanese people (strategy, economy and destiny).
Military victories against Russia and China had helped secure Japan's position on Chinese mainland.
Japanese domestic economic and political crises
Chinese political instability; civil war (CCP vs. GMD)
Outrage over behaviour of foreigners in China had seen Chinese nationalism grow. GMD led by Chiang Kai-Shek started National Unification Campaign: anti-foreigner rhetoric and demands to end unequal treaties great powers, including Japan and China, had to sign. 1921 - CCP established under Mao Zedong. Initially, Communists and Nationalists joined forces (United Front) to launch the Northern Expedition with the aim to consolidate centralised government control and kick out warlords. However from 1927 civil war breaks down.
Causes of Manchurian Crisis
Manchurian Crisis of 1931 caused by changed political situation in China in late 1920s and growth of Japanese nationalism and militarism due to their own political and economic crises.
Japan's Reaction to Northern Expedition
There was concern in Japan over the Northern Expedition as the Japanese had backed the warlord in Manchuria, Zhang Zoulin, who had become very powerful and had begun expanding into Northern China, and if were defeated by Kai-Shek it would threaten Japanese special interests in Manchuria. The Japanese Government planned to use its army in Manchuria, Kwantung Army, to force Zhang to retreat back to Manchuria. However Kwantung leaders forced the Northern Expedition to halt in Jinan and assassinated Zhang on the 4th of June, 1928. Although Prime Minister Tanaka was instructed to enforce discipline in the army by the emperor, he was unwilling to punish them as it would weaken the prestige of the army.
Tanaka was forced to resign as he didn't follow the emperor's wishes. This made it clear that the army could ignore the government with impunity, undermining the liberal democracy.
Hamaguchi Yuko became Prime Minister due to his manifesto of good relations with China, disarmament and an end to corruption. However as a result of the Great Depression's effect on the economy, he was forced to cut government salaries. London Disarmament Conference - limit Japanese naval growth.
Hamaguchi was shot and forced to resign due to his injuries in 1931, and eventually died in August.
Economic Crisis in Japan in 1920s
Japanese Domestic Issues: Economic Crisis
The global economic crisis beginning in 1929 cast doubts on the trustworthiness of the USA and other democratic nations and on Japan's own parliamentary system. Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act (1930) caused duties on Japanese goods to rise by as much as 200%. 1932 - the price of sink was 1/5 of what it was in 1923, with over half of farmers relying on silk production leading to desperate poverty as unemployment rose to 3 million.
Effect of Economic Crisis in Japan in 1920s
Manchuria's wealth of resources (coal, iron and timber) were increasingly enticing with Yasuke Matsuoke (Foreign Minister) described Manchuria as Japan's "lifeline". Zhang was succeeded by his son Zhang Xueliong who allied himself with Kai-Shek. Japanese government aimed to follow peaceful principles to maintain Japan's position in North-eastern China, however the Kwantung Army planned to seize Manchuria despite the emperor's contrary instructions.
18th September 1931
Near Mukden there was an explosion on a section of Japan owned South Manchurian Railway. Kwantung army claimed Chinese sabotage, however evidence incriminates the Kwantung. This provided the Kwantung Army with an 'excuse' to seize Manchuria, forcing the Chinese to retreat from Mukden. Then the following day, the Kwantung Army entered Changchun to the north. Wakatsuki's government declared a policy of "non-expansionism of hostilities", but the victorious Kwantung Army ignored the orders from Tokyo.
24th September 1931
Government declared army are to fall back to the railway zone, but the Kwantung Army ignored the government and pushed further into the Manchurian countryside.
International Response to Manchuria
Outside world considered Japanese actions "deceitful". They do not yet grasp the actions of the Kwantung army are unsanctioned by the Japanese government. Relations between Japan and USA/Britain deteriorate through the 1930s. Western response to this crisis seemed rather cautious - it did provoke Japan to leave the League of Nations. Historian Pyle sees Manchurian Crisis as a "turning point" for Japan. Japan now increasingly isolationist (seems to have left Washington Treaty System behind).
Response to Manchuria in Japan
Within Japan, attacks international law and League of Nations and the West as a whole. Comparisons made between League's actions and those of the Triple Intervention in 1895. Foreign Minister Uchida stated recognition of Manchuko in no way conflicts with 9 Power Treaty. Growing admiration in 1930 Japan for Hitler and Nazi Germany (also a League of Nations walk out). Increasing threat from new Communist regime in Soviet Union - by 1930 viewed as key potential opponent in the region. By 1936, Japan signed Anti-Cominterm Pact with Nazi Germany. However unlike Italy and Germany, Japan never officially had a fascist party lead the government, also never got rid of elections.
The Results for Manchuria and China
By the start of 1932, Manchuria wholly under control of Japanese forces.
Japan establishes an independent government under puppet Pu Yi (last Chinese emperor) called Manchuko.
Fighting between Japanese and Chinese forces also breaks out in Shanghai (January 1932).
Japanese bomb Shanghai (especially in residentially dense Chapei - 1000s of refugees and causalities) intensifies Chinese outrage and turns world opinion against Japan.
4 Japanese troop divisions land in Shanghai to help Japanese navy - after 6 weeks, Chinese forces withdraw.
The Results for Nationalists in China
During the Manchurian Crisis - China calls on Leaugue of Nations. Chiang Kai-Shek wants to focus on defeating CCP - realistic about levels of Western support but thought could buy tinme to organise defences. Basically, Chiang Kai-Shek adopts non-resistance, no-compromise and non-direct negotiation with Japan, which is very unlikely to help the Chinese position. Chinese populace boycott Japanese products reducing sales by 2/3, however did not stop Japanese actions or change Kai-Shek's priorities.
Japanese control of Manchuria was accepted in the Treaty of Tanggu. Kai-Shek agreed to the seizure of parts of Mongolia and in Ju ne 1935, agreed to remove all troops from Hebei province. Kai-Shek considered his strategy as "selling space to buy time".
Occupation of Manchuria Effect on Japan
Economic benefits of Japanese occupation of Manchuria were negated by the cost of maintaining an army in China. By going it alone internationally and its declaration to keep peace in Asia through the "Asia Munroe Doctrine", Japan may be overstretching itself. Japan needed to protect itself against Soviet Union and the US navy and also get China to accept its occupation. Following the Manchurian Crisis, it was unclear whether the government would be able to regain control especially because the Japanese people supported Kwantung actions.
After 1932 - divided Japan (not just government vs. military but within the military itself). Destabilised political situation even more. This caused the establishment of a military government, and decent into the "Dark Valley". After 1932 - Political crisis and growing influence of military. Despite few generals not keen on a military junta (dictatorship). There was a growing momentum behind the militarist groups. Both factions wanted more of a military influence and agree in a military dictatorship and Japanese expansion.
Koda-Ha Perspective During Dark Valley
Koda-Ha - imperial way, more radical
Koda-Ha saw Manchuria as the first step towards inevitable war with Soviet Union and emphasised national spirit over military force.
Toesi-Ha Perspective During Dark Valley
Toesi-Ha - control faction, conservative (ie gain power through legal means)
Toesi-Ha saw the Soviet union in a positive way and wanted good relations with them and focus on conquering China (modernisation of army and industry for mobilisation of the whole nation).
3 major assassination plots destabilised the government between 1932-1936 (due to internal struggle). May 1932 - Army and naval officers attack banks, party officers and police headquarters in Tokyo (PM Inukai shot and killed). The trial showed widespread support for the conspirators and disillusionment with ruling political parties. Therefore, the May incident increased army influence and further undermined the democratic government. Interim government - Admirals Saito and Okada saw army play out faction struggle.
Admiral Saito Role in Interim Power Struggle
Admiral Saito (May 1932 - July 1934) backed up Koda-Ha as three faction members were promoted to high ranking positions but when he discovered their plot to kill him he promotes a member of the Toesi-Ha faction as the minister of war.
Interim Power Struggle Between Koda-Ha and Toesi-Ha
Admiral Okada takes over in July 1934. During his rule Koda-Ha published a document promoting that the army should promote the economy. Koda-Ha minister sacked for not controlling his young officers and then a Koda-Ha official assassinated the head of Toesi-Ha faction (General Nagata). Sympathy for assassin but he was executed anyways and then young Koda-Ha officers attempt a coup (February 1936). 1500 soldiers attack Tokyo (police headquarters, parliament, etc.) Brutal murders and news spreads around the globe. 15 officers involved were shot and killed. From now Koda-Ha is discredited and Toesi-Ha is now in control of the army planning. Army can control country now. Okada resigns after attempted coup, Hirota Koki is now PM. Koki is weak from the start and compromises a stronger foreign policy.
Results of Toesi-Ha Control
Now that Toesi-Ha is able to control country: Hirota expanded arms for Manchurian army, signed the anti-Comminterm Pact with Hitler (1936) and National Diet declared the military had official control. Government declared General Hayashi was in power from February to June 1937. Diet was an instrument of power that attempted to limit the military's power. Politicians were divided.
Prince Konoye Fumimaro took over as PM. Konoye wanted to restrain the army. Soon apparent that could not (Toesi-Ha faction was dominant in leading the government and expansion in China was their objective). Toesi-Ha general Tojo Hideki became chief of staff to the Kwantung Army in July 1937.
7th of July 1937
Chinese and Japanese forces begin fighting at the Marco Polo Bridge incident. Unlike the Mukden incident, there is not much evidence to prove Japanese instigation. However, Japanese army moved forces into China from Korea with no government approval. By the end of July, Japan had taken Beijing and in August, there was also fighting in Shanghai creating a "War on 2 Fronts". The Japanese attack was brutal with more devastating air raids, which drove Chinese refugees to flee to the interior amounting to the largest human exodus in history.
Tanaka Memorial - an alleged Japanese strategic planning document showing Japan's intentions for global domination (Harries - "most successful dirty trick of the 20th century")
Rape of Nanjing
Nanjing is the National Chinese Government Capital. City fell to Japan on the 13th of December, followed by days of atrocities. Irye (1987) - "all but impossible for Japan still to be accepted as a respectable member of the international community". Spence (1990) - "terror and destruction... among the worst in modern history."
- 30 000 female rape victims
- 30 000 slain soldiers
- 12 000 murdered civilians
Results of the Second Sino-Japanese War
Although the Japanese did not want a war with China and rather planned for a major conflict with the Soviet Union, following the escalation of the Marco polo Bridge incident Prince Konoe declared his aim to obliterate the nationalist regime. Japan hoped that China would quickly capitulate, but they underestimated Chinese nationalism and outrage over the Rape of Nanjing. China refused terms for peace, forcing Japan to overstretch its supply lines becoming more vulnerable to guerrilla attacks as the Chinese moved further into the interior.
New Order in East Asia proposed as a political, cultural and economic union between Japan, Manchukuo and China. Kai-Shek rejected the union, as well as Japan's other strategies to end the war.
Conflict After 1938
Militarists take control. Prince Konoe returned to PM in July 1940 after resigning in December 1938. Aimed to limit military power by forming a unity party called The Imperial Rule Assistance Association. However still failed to control the militarists. Multi-party politics suspended in 1940. Military were in total control in October 1941, Prince Konoe was replaced by General Tojo.
Impact of the War in Europe on Japan
Summer of 1940, Hitler's swift victories opens up potential European colonies in the Asia Pacific region.
November 1940 - French Indo-China pressured into allowing Japanese troops and use of airfields.
September 1940 - Japan signed the Tripartite Axis Pact which agreed that Germany and Italy would dominate Europe leaving Japan to dominate East Asia.
Victory of the Nazi's allowed Japan to take control of the Asian colonies of Britain, France and the Netherlands.
Japan signed the Neutrality Pact with the Soviet Union and was able to secure its northern border and move forces further south.
24 of July 1941
USA and Britain froze all Japanese assets bringing foreign trade with Japan to a halt. They also increased defences in the region and aid to Kai-Shek.
Japan expanded its ambition for the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere to include South-East Asia.
Economic Concerns --> Pearl Harbour
The US trade embargo created long term fatal flaws in the Japanese economy (response to Japanese occupation of Indo China). Only option was the seizure of European colonies in the Pacific if a war of conquest was desired. Divided public opinion in Japan (i.e: could retreat from Indo China and get sanctions lifted). US/Japan diplomatic efforts continue to 1941. US wants Japan to respect regional territorial sovereignty and "open door" policy and achieve aims peacefully. Despite Prince Konoe's efforts this was not agreeable.
4 of December 1941
Japanese military and government agreed alternative plans on the 4th of December 1941: complete preparations for war, take all diplomatic measures with USA and Great Britain and if demands haven't been met by 10th of October, Japan will launch an attack. Japan sent a final diplomatic mission to agree terms, whilst a huge naval force secretly prepared to attack the US if negotiations fail.
2 of November 1941
Council President Hara states in a final Imperial Conference that "it is inevitable that we must start a war with the United States".
Historian Viewpoints on Pearl Harbour
Michiko Hasegawa (Japanese historian) - the attack was caused by the US oil embargo
Revisionist historians - USA provoked Japan into launching an attack.
7 of December 1941
Japanese attack Pearl Harbour with the intent to destroy the US Pacific fleet, which would have allowed Japan to consolidate power in South East Asia before the USA would be able to rebuild its naval capability. The attack destroyed 90% of the mid-Pacific air and sea power, however there were several aircraft carriers remaining. Roosevelt described the attack as "dastardly" as there were 2403 killed and 1178 injured military personel and civilians before declaration of war.
Japanese Attack Plan After Pearl Harbour
As Japan attack Pearl Harbour, they concurrently attacked Hong Kong and Singapore. Followed by the Dutch East Indies, the Philippines and Malaya on the 8th of December. Japan seized control of Guam, Hong Kong and Wake Island by the end of December. Japan also sunk 2 British Battleships. By mid-1942, Japan had captures Indo China, Siam, The Dutch East Indies, Malaya, Singapore and the Philippines.
Sets with similar terms
WWII Japanese Expansionism (1931-41)
1.1 The impact of nationalism and militarism on Ja…
History 80b Final
Sets found in the same folder
History P1: International Response to Japanese Agg…
P2: Cold War
P2: Cold War Crises, Leaders and Countries
Other sets by this creator
ACFI1003 - MIDSEMESTER TEST
ECON1001 FINAL EXAM
ACFI1001 FINAL EXAM
ACFI1001 MID TERM
Other Quizlet sets
Terms Test 2
Sencond Set Final
egemony 【名】 〔政党などの国家に対する〕覇権、支配権、ヘゲモニー 〔ヘゲモニーを持つ〕覇権…
President of the United States (1913-1921) and the leading figure at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919. He was unable to persuade the U.S. Congress to ratify the Treaty of Versailles or join the League of Nations. (p. 762)
Which conclusion can best be drawn from the creation of " Dust Bowl " conditions during the Great Depression
What does the Legistlative branch do?
"I do not want to miss a good chance of getting us a slice of this magnificent African cake." Does this support imperialism or oppose it?