imperial japan, part 2: imperial expansion

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History of Imperial Japan, Russo-Japanese War, Sino-Japanese Wars, and Zaibatsu

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IMPERIAL JAPANSino-Japanese War, Russo-Japanese War,& Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity SphereBy William P. LitynskiMilitary-Industrial Complex in Imperial Japan, Part 2:The Japanese Coloniation o! "orea, Man#huria, China, & East AsiaFrom the Grassy Knoll in Harbin, China:one Gunman or Patsy!The Assassination of Ito Hirobumi, Former Prime Minister of Japan, by Korean Patriot Ahn Jung-geun (October !, "#$#%"I#m $ust a patsy%&: Korean patriot Ahn Jung-geun assassinates an& 'i((s Japanese &ip(omat Ito Hirobumi, )ho ser*e& as +esi&ent ,enera( of Korea from -ecember ", "#$. to June "/, "#$#, at the Harbin +ai()ay 0tation in Harbin, 1hina 2Manchuria3 on October !, "#$#4(Painting5 http566)))4pennfami(y4org6K00-70A6'orean-on-stamp-.4htm(%Japanese &ip(omat Ito Hirobumi, Prime Minister of Japan &uring the First 0ino-Japanese 8ar, (ea*es the train at the Harbin +ai()ay 0tation in Harbin, 1hina on October !, "#$#4 9eft photo5 0un:ong, the (ast ;mperor of Korea (reign, Ju(y $, "#$ation Treaty4+ight photo5 Korean &ip(omat 9ee 8an-yong ("?.?-"#!% signe& the Japan-Korea Anne>ation Treaty, an une@ua( treaty in )hich Japan forma((y anne>e& Korea, in "#"$4Politi'al (ssassinations in Imperial Japan:)r*ani+ed Crime!From the Grassy Knoll in ,o-yo, Japan:one Gunman or Patsy!The Attempte& Assassination of 1ro)n Prince Hirohito of Japanby a Japanese 1ommunist (-ecember Bettmann"?@AB)S5Prin&e (umimaro 6onoe 3right8 rear5 #at&hes Prime .inister o% 0apan 6oki Hirota delivers a spee&h on administrative poli&y :e%ore the House o% Peers in 4okyo8 0apan on .ay *+8 19+=.3Photo! Bettmann"?@AB)S5(meri'an (mbassador Joseph C8 Gre6#s 7es'riptiono. the February 29 In'ident: In His )6n 6ordsNIn the ear(y morning of February ! there occurre& one of the most &ramatic an& tragic e*ents in Japanese history, permanent(y 'no)n as NThe February ! Inci&ent4O The )riter, ha*ing been persona((y an& intimate(y in touch )ith the inci&ent, its (ea&ing figures an& its aftermath, here narrates the story in some &etai(4On the night of the .th, Mrs4 ,re) an& I ha& gi*en at the;mbassy a &inner for some A! guests in honor of the 9or& Keeper of the Pri*y 0ea(, former Prime Minister Jiscount A&mira( 0aito an& Jiscountess 0aito, an& among our other guests )ere A&mira( Kantaro 0uLu'i, ,ran& 1hamber(ain to the ;mperor, as )e(( as Jiscount an& Jiscountess Ishii4 Jiscount 0aito ha& to(& me that he ha& ne*er seen a mo&ern soun&-fi(m an& in or&er to interest the o(& gent(eman, for )hom )e ha& great affection, I ha& chosen Jictor HerbertKs fi(m Naughty Marietta )hich )as sho)n, )ith the p(aying of its romantic music, in our sa(on after &inner4 Jiscount 0aito )as c(ear(y &e(ighte&, an& instea& of retiring at his usua( ear(y hour he remaine& through the fi(m an& e*en for supper after)ar&s4 I sa) him off at about ha(f past e(e*en )ith e*ery in&ication on his part of ha*ing thorough(y en:oye& the e*ening4In the (ight of aftere*ents it has a()ays been a source of gratification that )e ha& been ab(e to affor& Jiscount 0aito those (ast fe) hours of p(easure4 :ome .i;e hours later he 6as assassinated at his home, an& A&mira( 0uLu'i )as shot through the chest, a )oun& from )hich fortunate(y he reco*ere&4On the fo((o)ing morning I )ent to the JiscountQs house to pay my respects, 'nee(ing besi&e the bo&y an& burning incense accor&ing to Hu&&hist rites4 His )i&o) )as there, 'nee(ing at his hea&, )ith her arm in a s(ing because she a(so ha& been machine gunne& in attempting to &efen& him4 0he (ifte& the sheet, sho)ing a sing(e bu((et ho(e through the forehea&, an& sai&5 NMy husban& )ou(& )ish me to than' you for ha*ing gi*en him such a happy (ast e*ening on earth4O 0uch are the tragic moments of (ife )hich are ineffaceab(e from memory4In the (ight of aftere*ents it is interesting to (oo' bac' on our first te(egram to the -epartment )hich )as sent on February ! at "$ A4M45The mi(itary too' partia( possession of the ,o*ernment an& city ear(y this morning an& it is reporte& ha*e assassinate& se*era( prominent men4 It is impossib(e as yet to confirm anything4 The ne)s correspon&ents are not permitte& to sen& te(egrams or to te(ephone abroa&4This te(egram is being sent primari(y as a test message, to ascertain if our co&e te(egrams )i(( be transmitte&4 1o&e room p(ease ac'no)(e&ge imme&iate(y upon receipt4,he February 29 In'ident 6as 'arried out by a small *roup o. extremist military o..i'ers, none hi*her than the ran- o. 'aptain, 6ho 6ere dissatis.ied 6ith the restrainin* in.luen'e o. the statesmen about the /mperor8 They ha& rehearse& their p(ans )ith so(&iers )ho, )hen ca((e& out on the morning of the !th, suppose& that the usua( routine practice )as to be un&erta'enD surroun&ing each of the mar'e& houses, the officers entere& an& shot Jiscount 0aito, stabbe& Finance Minister Ta'ahashi to &eath, an& shot -irector of Mi(itary ;&ucation, ,enera( Jotaro 8atanabe, an& A&mira( 0uLu'i4 The first three )ere 'i((e& outrightD A&mira( 0uLu'i reco*ere&4 ;ntering the officia( resi&ence of the Prime Minister the assassins mistoo' A&mira( O'a&aQs brother-in-(a) 21o(one( Matsuo3 for the Premier an& shot him )hi(e the A&mira( hi& an& escape&4 ;fforts to 'i(( Prince 0aion:i an& 1ount 0hin'en Ma'ino 2former Keeper of the Pri*y 0ea(3 fai(e&D both )ere in the country at the timeD the former )as apparent(y fore)arne&D the hote( in )hich the (atter )as staying )as set on fire, 1ount Ma'ino escaping by a rear e>it an& c(imbing a c(iff )here his heroic gran&&aughter, Kasu'o, an& his traine& nurse sprea& their 'imonos about him for concea(ment4 The officers assigne& to the assassination of 1ount Ma'ino )ere either 'i((e& or )oun&e& by his guar&, an& it is be(ie*e& that the so(&iers, a(though recogniLing 1ount Ma'ino on the c(iff, refuse& to shoot4Fo((o)ing the assassinations, the insurgents too' refuge in the officia( resi&ence of the Prime Minister an& the 0anno Hote(, ha*ing fai(e& in their intentions to capture strategicgo*ernment bui(&ingsD martia( (a) )as &ec(are& an& (oya( troops )ith tan's too' up positions in the *icinity of the Hritish an& ,erman ;mbassies )ith the intention of attac'ing the insurgents to )hom an u(timatum to surren&er ha& been sent4As the American ;mbassy )as in &irect (ine )ith the pro:ecte& (ine of fire, a ,enera( 0taff officer ca((e& on me an& as'e& us to e*acuate to a p(ace of safety )hich ha& been arrange&, but I &ec(ine& the offer )ith than's, )hi(e )arning a(( members of the staff an& their fami(ies not to e>pose themse(*es nee&(ess(y4This &ecision )as base& on the be(ief that our e*acuation )ou(& cause un&ue a(arm among the American community in To'yo4 8e fe(t that the ;mbassy ce((ars offere& a&e@uate protection in case of necessity an& se*era( fami(ies in a&:acent houses came to our resi&ence for the ensuing critica( &ays an& nights )hen )e scarce(y s(ept4 -uring that entire perio& the f(ag of the insurgents continue& to f(y from the Prime MinisterQs resi&ence4The atmosphere throughout the night of the ?th an& the morningR of the #th )as tense an& e*ery in&ication pointe& to the imminence of combat, but &uring the course of the morning of the #th a re(a>ation of this tense atmosphere became noticeab(e4 The ,o*ernment )as e>erting patience an& ma'ing e*ery effort,R through ra&io broa&casts an& by &ropping (eaf(ets from airp(anes, to persua&e the re*o(utionaries to &isban& )ithout resorting to arme& attac', an& it is significant that the (eaf(ets )ere a&&resse& on(y to insurgent so(&iers an& not to the insurgent officers, the so(&iers being as'e& to reconsi&er their position an& or&ere& to obey the ;mperorQs comman& to return to their barrac'sD other)ise they )ou(& be treate& as re*o(utionists an& shot4 From the )in&o)s of the chancery )e cou(& see sma(( groups of so(&iers continua((y emerging, an& at / oQc(oc' in the afternoon of the #th it )as announce& that a(( of the re*o(ting troops ha& surren&ere& an& that norma( con&itions )ou(& be restore& at /4"$4-uring the )ho(e perio& of the re*o(t it )as &ifficu(t to sort out the )heat from the chaff in the great *o(ume of reports an&rumors that reache& us4 In&ee&, it )as not unti( the e*ening of the #th that Haron ,onsu'e Hayashi, former ,ran& Master of 1eremonies, returne& from the Pa(ace an& to(& me that Prime Minister O'a&a, )hom e*eryone be(ie*e& &ea&, )as a(i*e an& unin:ure&4 It appeare& that his brother-in-(a), )ho some)hat resemb(e& him, ha& been 'i((e& by mista'e an& that the Premier ha& escape& an& ha& remaine& un&erco*er since the night of the .th4 He su&&en(y announce& himse(f to the ;mperor, )hereupon Home Minister Fumio ,oto, appointe& Acting Premier, )ith&re) from the premiership )hich )as resume& by O'a&a4 Fe) more &ramatic inci&ents ha*e e*er occurre& in history, an& &uring the crisis there )ere outstan&ing cases of heroism )hich nee& not be recor&e& here but )hich &eser*e their p(ace among the great e>amp(es of heroic beha*ior of a(( time4On March ( officia( announcement )as ma&am

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