Japanese Imperialism during World War II
Japan was desperate, in social and economic crisis, and racked by devastating natural disasters. Dozens of earthquakes leftdestruction in its wake. By 1926 over three-million workers were unemployed and thousands had lost their life savings.
For the first time in history, Japan was on the edge of revolt. A communistmovement became popular and was gaining force. In 1930 series of assassinations began. It was a brainless period of patriotism when zealots (described as one of the first example of the use of terrorism)tried to purify Japan by murdering its leaders. The public sympathized with the assassins and considered them heroes.
Japan, a nation dependent upon imported resources, suffered when the “The GreatDepression” hit America destroying their greatest economic industry, the export of silk to the United States.
Japanese leaders believed that Asian colonies could supply them with raw materials andaid them in their economic problems through conquest. Acting upon his initiative Lieutenant Colonel Kanji Ishihara began Japans military aggression by attacking Manchuria under the pretext ofwrong-doing to seize territory. By March 1932, the Japanese Kwantung Army was given the go-ahead to capture all of Manchuria, Jehol, and a part of Mongolia. The United States and other powers refused torecognize the new independent state of Manchukuo, which was made up of conquered lands that had been taken from China.
The Japanese were annoyed by “The League of Nations” criticizing their measures bydeciding to withdraw from the League and disregarding world opinion and peace treaties. In 1939 the United States rescinded its commercial treaty with the Empire of Japan and began to restrict essentialshipments of oil and metals. These actions created resentment for the West throughout the land.
By 1941 the U.S. joined in a full embargo which was a devastating blow to Japanese need and...