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The Manchurian Crisis

In our History class our teacher told us to watch a video in her blog about the Manchurian Crisis and then answer some questions.

1-  At the beginning, the video shows that although the role of League of Nations  was maintaining peace, it failed. Poland is presented as an example of this failure since it was attacked in 1939.

2- Japan faced many problems. These were:

  • Japan had suffered a lot from the depression;
  • The population was booming with 500.000.000 mouths to feed;
  • Japan was an isolated country. It had to open trade to maintain the population;
  • She didn’t have  natural resources of its own;
  • It relied on international connections to trade;
  • In 1930 the unemployment was high
  • The agricultural failure.

3- Politicians took the second place in the army, the army controlled the education system and martial techniques were obligatory from a very early age.

4- Since the Japanese didn’t have resources, they thought that by invading Manchuria in China they would get the resources they desperately needed. This included the elimination of the Chinese which was considered by them as a subhuman race.

5- The value of Manchuria was the railway system and its rich lands, so in 1931 the Japanese infiltrated guards in Manchuria and threatened to sabotage the railway system. Immediately China appealed to the League. This also helped Japan to expand their territories.

6- The Japanese Imperial Army had the permission of the Japanese government to launch retaliatory actions if the Chinese attacked any Japanese property in the area. As a result, Japanese troops responded to the explosion at Mukden by attacking the nearby Chinese Garrison, taking and securing it with ease as the Chinese government had ordered troops in the area not to resist any attacks by Japanese troops in this area.

The Incident was a masterstroke by Japanese officers determined to begin the process of territorial expansion. The explosion at Mukden was very probably staged by Japanese troops to enable a retaliatory attack. Following the seizure of Mukden Japanese troops began occupying other towns and cities in the area. Within 5 months the whole of Manchuria was under the control of the Japanese army.

7- It took a lot of time to answer the Chinese, in the end, they said that Japan should leave. The Japanese had to withdraw from the invaded land and Manchuria should became a semi – independent nation free from China and Japan.

8- As a consequence Japan decided to leave the League. She had successfully taken Manchuria and as they had left the League, no – one could control them and no – one would intervene. This episode showed the weakness of the League and its failure to play the role it supposedly had, it showed the fallacy in the system.

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