The Rise of Japan in Manchuria and the Weak International Reaction As of September 1931, Manchuria was experiencing a crisis.Japan's meteoric rise: ContextIn 1853, the United States sent its fleet to Japan, breaking the country's long-held isolation.The entrance of the Americans caused concern and awe among the Japanese.They were anxious that the West would decide to conquer Japan like it had other countries.In 1868, a band of samurai rebelled and overthrew the government.Commited to making Japan as prosperous and powerful as the West so as to prevent its conquest.In the last decades of the nineteenth century, Japan's economy flourished, its population grew, and its military might rivaled that of the United States and Western Europe.Increased Military Strength and Defeat of Russia:Background picture of growing Japanese military strengthThey achieved big maritime successes over the Russians, which strengthened their pride and confidence in both their navy and their army, and their armed forces were so powerful that governments had little control over them in the 1920s.The results of Japan's modernization were so good that the country quickly challenged Russia.In 1904, war was declared.Defeating Russia and sinking their main fleet in 1905 stunned the international community and demonstrated Japan's military might. This victory bolstered national pride and confidence in Japan's navy and army.After their victory over a major European power, the Japanese assumed they would be recognized as a Western equal. They set their sights on expanding their industrial capacity by establishing an Asian empire from which to import raw materials. Empire BuildingBecause of the danger it posed to Western interests in Asia, many Westerners were dismayed by the news.Japan joined the Allies during World War I and went on to conquer all of Germany's Pacific possessions. However, the country was not given the recognition it deserved for its efforts.Joined the League's Council despite feeling patronized and excluded due to their perceived lack of European ancestry.There was hostility towards Britain, France, and the United States because of the lack of benefits.The Japanese were enraged by the Washington Naval Conferences ("5:5:3 Navaltreaty") because it required them to disarm to a lesser degree than Britain and the United States.Discrimination based on race in the League Less territory/colonies than projectedInvasion of Manchuria in the 1920s: The military had grown so powerful that it disregarded political directives.Military leaders in Japan desired more power over Manchuria.Justification for invading Japan — a fresh opportunity to sell their waresMore territory—resentment for their lack of colonies, imperialism; more living space—high population density backdrop image; the Great Depression had caused a large reduction in their trade, since they primarily sold luxury items.For raw resources like iron and coal and
inexpensive labor, as well as to alleviate food shortages caused by the Great Depression and the war.Assaulted the Chinese in September 1931 by staging an attack from Manchuria on Japan by destroying a train on the border, prompting the Japanese to invade Manchuria.The Japanese quickly prevailed in the subsequent conflict.In Manchuria, Japan installed a puppet government.Through propaganda, Japan urged its people to go to Manchuria.To get help, China contacted the League of Nations.Here, Collective Security and the League's authority were put to the test.The LoN included both Japan and China.The League's reaction was panned as ineffective.Almost nothing was done by the League. backdrop pictureThe Lytton Report successfully implemented the moral sanction against Japan. However, this was unsuccessful since it took a very long time (an entire year!) for Lytton to travel to Manchuria and for the report to be completed, and it still merely relayed information that had been known by the League from the start.The committee was critical of both Japan and China, but by the time the report was finished, Japan was firmly established in China.To no one's surprise, Japan departed the League of Nations in 1933 after the Council adopted the Lytton Committee Report and its damning criticisms of the country.It was demonstrated that the league was helpless; moral sanctions had no impact.The Role of the Superpowers as a result of this:The United States of America and the Soviet Union, two countries with interests in the region that were left out of the LoN, were conspicuously absent.USSR: picture for the backdropThe Soviet Union viewed Japan's efforts in East Asia as a threat.They were not prepared to act unilaterally, and they had no friends to protect them from a similar performance by Japan of its 1905 aggression.Had to take care of civilian matters:There was anarchy and mayhem when peasants were relocated to new group farms against their will.Lacking the resources to initiate hostilitiesSome US lawmakers were shocked by this.H. Hoover was averse to involvement and a staunch isolationist.The United States did not back trade restrictions, and isolationist attitudes continued.The LoN's power to threaten it was lessened because nations realized the United States would fill the void if they ceased trading.The United States was the'missing keystone'Italy and Germany, both fascist nations, were supportive of Japanese invasion.Background image: They were engaged in imperialism and sought to establish an empire for themselves.Italy's desire for imperial power extended beyond the Far East.Germany was curious as to whether or if Japan could get away with its aggressiveness in the Far East, where it had vested interests.Germany planned to utterly overturn the ToV and, if they could, get away with a lot more.Both sides were seeking territorial expansion."Hitler's lebensraum" was an important goal of his.The Manchurian
Crisis came a few years before Italy's Abyssinian Crisis and Germany's Anschluss; both were unhappy with the League but encouraged by their inaction.Among the concerned world powers was France, which voiced its disapproval of the Japanese actions.Totally worried about the Nazi menace.Germany's defenses would be weakened if they became embroiled in another war.They were unable to participate in hostilities because they had lately slashed their defense budgets.the Japanese were roundly criticized in public.In private, they conveyed their understanding of the challenges the Japanese were confronting in China.Background picture of BritainIt feared that Japan would become aggressive,The British fleet just lacked the resources to take on the Japanese.Military authorities were concerned that a conflict with Japan may have catastrophic results.The government was concerned about losing business from British companies that had established strong ties to Japan. Egocentrically focused on preserving its place in international trade, particularly in the wake of the Great DepressionIf the British went to war with Japan, they may lose important colonies like India, Singapore, and Hong Kong.Were unprepared for battle since defense expenditure had been slashed severely during the Great Depression.