Japan s drive for an empire
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Japan’s Drive For An Empire. Did Japan commit war crimes during WWII?. Invasion of Manchuria. Military leaders win control of Japan during the depression – think war/expansion will fix economy 1931: Japan invades Manchuria, a Chinese Province which was rich in coal & iron

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Japan’s Drive For An Empire

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Japan s drive for an empire

Japan’s Drive For An Empire

Did Japan commit war crimes during WWII?


Invasion of manchuria

Invasion of Manchuria

  • Military leaders win control of Japan during the depression – think war/expansion will fix economy

  • 1931: Japan invades Manchuria, a Chinese Province which was rich in coal & iron

  • When China complains to the League of Nations, Japan claims they are trying to help Manchuria

  • Japan creates a puppet government & Manchurians declare the independent country of Manchukuo

  • 1937: Japan claims one of its soldiers is missing, wants to enter China to search


Nanking massacre aka the rape of nanking

  • China refuses, Japan opens fire on China (Marco Polo Bridge Incident), Japan invades China

  • After conquering Shanghai, Japan ready to invade the capital, Nanking

  • As the Japanese Army drew closer to Nanking, civilians try to flee city

  • Japanese say they will only target Chinese soldiers but start killing civilianswhen they enter the city

Nanking Massacre aka The Rape of Nanking


Japan s drive for an empire

  • Japan had joined Axis powers, so using his position as a Nazi, Rabe set up a “safety zone”

  • Women were forcibly raped, some girls as young as eight years old, many are Chinese forced into prostitution becoming “comfort women”

  • One man who helped the Chinese was a Nazi businessman named John Rabe

  • Although Rabe saved close to 200,000 nearly 300,000 were killed in the six-week massacre

  • After the war, many in Japan denied genocide & war crimes – Forgotten Holocaust of WWII

  • Saburo Ienega, a textbook writer sued the Japanese govt (1965-1997) for censorship

  • Saburo won most of his lawsuits


Video clips john rabe

Video Clips: John Rabe

  • How was Rabe able to save Chinese citizens from a Japanese bombing attack?

  • What were Japanese soldiers doing to prisoners of war?

  • What issues did the intl committee face in creating the zone?

  • What was happening to civilians & prisoners, who does Rabe ask for help?

  • Based on the clips, what war crimes were committed?


Map time

Map Time!

  • Color Japan’s Empire in key red, Japanese occupation striped red

  • Color Japan (1), Korea (2), Taiwan (3) red

  • Stripe Manchuria (4), China (7) in red


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