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Identify and explain the main features of Japan's foreign policy in the 1920s.

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Introduction

Identify and explain the main features of Japan's foreign policy in the 1920s. During the 'liberal twenties', Japan adopted a more compromising policy towards foreign affairs. After the First World War, international relations were entering a new postwar phase. Moreover, party government became a peculiar political feature in Japan during this period. This paved the way for Japan in adopting a policy of internationalism. However, imperialism and militarism was never abandoned as education, Emperor worship, propaganda and fruits of victory in the Sino-Japanese war and Russo- Japanese war all made Imperialism an accepted program among all Japanese. Internationalism characterized all of Japan's foreign relations during the 1920s. this policy was also called 'Shidehara diplomacy' as Shidehara kijuro was the foreign minister in 1924-1927, and 1929-1931. this policy was supported by the parliamentary coalition in the Diet, the bureaucrats, and the businessmen, who were international in culture and whose ascendancy paralleled Japan's close ties with the United states, England, and France , the democratic victors in the first world war. ...read more.

Middle

All these controversies were to be settled by a conference of the four powers. The earlier Anglo Japanese alliance was to be terminated upon ratification of this new treaty. The five power pacific treaty limited the naval tonnage of capital ships of the signatories in 5-5-3-1.75-1.75 of US, Great Britain, Japan, France, and Italy respectively. The 'Nine Power Treaty' dealt with China. On the one hand it recognized unequal -treaty rights in china and tacitly recognized Japan's position in Manchuria. On the other hand it confirmed the 'sovereignty, the independence, and the territorial and administrative integrity of China.' This shows the willingness of Japan to cooperate with foreign powers. Although in the 1920's party politicians did try to work with the powers abroad through internationalism, exercise greater control over the services, and carry out liberal measures, they had not advocated abandoning militarism and imperialism. For instance, no party politician ever suggested withdrawal from Korea, Taiwan or Manchuria. Indeed, there was rise of militarism idea in the late 1920s. The Japanese want to search for glory and prestige. ...read more.

Conclusion

If we are successful in conquering china, the remainder of the Asiatic nations and the South Sea countries will fear us and surrender to us....' In fact, the success of the Northern Expedition in China worried Japanese militarists. They feared that after reunification, china would become strong enough to resist Japanese aggression. Her expansion towards Manchuria would be blocked therefore, Japanese militarists urged their government to strike before the Chinese gained strength. The Japanese were worried by the growing influence of the Soviet Union in northern Manchuria in the 1920s. Soviet ambition was revealed in the formation of a special army in the Far East. The double tracking of the Trans-Siberian Railway further aroused the suspicion of Japan. All this paved the way for the rise of militarism in the 1930s. As a whole, in the early period of 1920s, Japan's effort in cooperating with other countries was apparent. Following the decline of the party government, there was a weakening in the policy of internationalism. In the late 1920s, marked by the Tanaka Memorial, militarism and imperialism rose up and this also contributed to the rose of extreme nationalistic idea in the 1930s. Reference list: Japan (revised edition) Reischauer.Craig New certificate world history (volume 2) W.F.Wong ...read more.

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