LEADERS IN JAPANESE HISTORY

 

 

 

 

 

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LEADERS IN JAPANESE HISTORY

The success and rise of Japan to being a dominant player in the world economy is to a large extent attributed to its leaders who mostly had military background. In other words, Japan evolution has it foundation on its leaders who were often drawn from the military. Given their influence and ranking not just within the military ranks but more so in the national politics and the society in general, the leaders with military background assisted in shaping, protecting and driving the economy of Japan to where it is today; world class economy. While most military leaders made good country leaders, it is important to note that not all such leaders were successful or made important contribution to evolution of Japan. One such remarkable leader however is the 40th Prime Minister of Japan, one Tojo Hideki. Tojo who was elected in 1941 masterminded social unrest and political chaos, which was felt not just in Japan but in the entire world.

Tojo’s decisions and dictatorial powers lead to devastation economically, socially and politically of Japan.  This type of leadership culminated to tension and bad foreign relations between Japan and the Western countries as well as other countries in the world. Despite the fact that Tojo as a leader greatly impacted on Japan history and subsequent evolution, his was a devastation and destruction role. While in public, Tojo presented himself as a people servant, self effacing individual who was doing his best to serve his people[1]. However, behind doors, Tojo was an apt bureaucratic individual who sole interest was gathering power and ruling by the fist.  In fact, it is accurate to say that Tojo lead to the ultimate non-realization of Japan’s evolution.

Hideki Tojo was born on 30th December 1884 in a town referred to as Tokyo in Japan.  He was from the family of samurai descent and was the third son of Hidenori. His father was Japanese general therefore he decided to take Tojo to Military Academy and later to Army College. Tojo made great achievement after he graduated in 1924 where he afforded to be attached in Switzerland as a military member while still teaching at the Army Staff College. He was a sharp and a quick decision maker and thereby he was referred to as Razor in the military circle. Above all, Tojos greatest achievement was his ability to arrest of the main conspirators in the incident that took place in 26th February before the occurrence of the World War II.

The incident on 26th February was the coup d’état attempt to the government of Japan. It was as a result of bitterness of the Japanese military younger officers because of increased corruption and poverty in rural areas. The younger officers in Japanese military believed that removing some of the government official could help to solve the problem. Some of the target official to be removed included Keisuke Okada the prime minister and Makino Nobuaki who had a great relationship with Hirohito the Emperor. Tojo and some of the military members were able to prevent and arrest many of the conspirators and end the rebellion because they were against it. Therefore, the incident made Tojo to be promoted to be the Chief of Staff and later in 1929 he became the Commander of the First Infantry Regiment which is well known.

Tojo was supported military actions for instance the Second Sino Japanese war and the 1931 Manchurian invasion because he believed in the hostility of foreign policy and had a great right wing views. Japan had established a small government in Manchuria referred to as Manchuko where Puyi was the leader. The participants of the invasion were the Manchuria and Korea under the control of Japan. The Second Sino Japanese War was caused by the colonial policy to take over China and start using it raw material and resources. The two wars caused death of many Chinese and japan was banned from the international community. Japan was banned from the League of Nations blaming them for military aggression.

At this time, Tojo had admiration for Hilter and Mussolini who were great dictators in Europe. Hilter for instance was a great mentor to Tojo because of his passion and toughness in his operations. Because of this increased interest on European dictators, Japan signed a Tripartite Pact that was to join them together with Italy and Germany. Many Japanese especially Tojo considered Americans to be self indulgent, lazy and immoral hence lacked respect for them as they did to the European dictators[2]. The attitude led Tojo to authorize the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Tojo was later appointed as the Prime Minister by Emperor Hirohito where he had belief that war with United States could not be avoided because of the high tension that existed between the two. United State established a restriction to export of oil to Japan which had a negative impact to the expansion of Japan military. Therefore, Tojo argued that an attack on Pearl Harbor could lead the US to lose many ships preventing them from interfering with the naval interest of Japan[3]. It would also give Japan enough time to reinforce and it navy. Tojo still argued that the attack could enable Japan to have full control of Southern Asia region because the morale of United State was to be lowered[4].

Tojo also lead the Battle of Midway where Japan wanted to withdraw United State as controller in the Pacific theatre of World War II. The incident was a great hope for Japan as it could cause the United State to end it operation on the Pacific and therefore Japan was to dominate countries in the East Asia[5]. Before this battle, the empire had gained victories from many battles especially Battle of the Philippines. Later, Japan started experiencing many defeat after they lost against United State on the Battle of Midway. The war includes the battle of Okinawa and Iwo Jima which has some historical remembrance to Japanese.

In Conclusion, the discussion on the paper is clear evidence that most of the Japan leaders had a great contribution and participation in the military. Tojo Hideki played a significant role in Japan’s evolution. This is properly evidenced in this essay by the various important events that Hideki initiated. The events include but not limited to the Battle of Midway and the Pearl Harbor. Despite the fact that Tojo was not the most “notorious’ leaders in Japan, he made his military skills felt during his leadership. Through the many pivotal initiatives, Hideki conjured; he proved that he was indeed a leader to look out for in as far as Japan’s evolution is concerned.

Tojo participated directly in the military sector of Japan there by qualifying to have authority over the citizens. Many of these leaders had great idea on how to strengthen the economy of Japan but it could only be achieved through wars tactics. For instance, Tojo could plan a battle with a certain objective of improving the status of other citizens. Therefore, I agree with the statement that many leaders in Japan were in military.

 

 

Bibliography

Brown, D. (1962). The Journal of Asian Studies, 21(2), 231-232. doi:1. Retrieved from             http://www.jstor.org/stable/2050535 doi:1

Bowers, J. (1962). Tojo and the Pacific War. The Review of Politics, 24(1), 153-155. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/1405463

Hinder, M. (1942). Hideki Tojo. Zeitschrift Für Politik, 32(10), 705-707. Retrieved from             http://www.jstor.org/stable/43348565

Grajdanzev, A. (1943). The “Ethical Elevation” of Japanese Politics. Far Eastern Survey, 12(7),            67-71. doi:1. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/3022768 doi:1

Wetzler, P. (1998). Tōjō and the Emperor: Mutual Political Convictions. In Hirohito and War:   Imperial Tradition and Military Decision Making in Prewar Japan (pp. 61-81).           University of Hawai’i Press. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt6wqzs6.7

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] Brown, D. (1962). The Journal of Asian Studies, 21(2), 231-232. doi:1. Retrieved from             http://www.jstor.org/stable/2050535 doi:1

 

[2] Hinder, M. (1942). Hideki Tojo. Zeitschrift Für Politik, 32(10), 705-707. Retrieved from             http://www.jstor.org/stable/43348565

 

[3] Wetzler, P. (1998). Tōjō and the Emperor: Mutual Political Convictions. In Hirohito and War:             Imperial Tradition and Military Decision Making in Prewar Japan (pp. 61-81).       University of Hawai’i Press. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt6wqzs6.7

 

[4] Grajdanzev, A. (1943). The “Ethical Elevation” of Japanese Politics. Far Eastern Survey, 12(7),          67-71. doi:1. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/3022768 doi:1

 

[5] Bowers, J. (1962). Tojo and the Pacific War. The Review of Politics, 24(1), 153-155. Retrieved            from http://www.jstor.org/stable/1405463

 

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