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16.5 part 2. Postwar Japan. The defeat suffered by Japan in World War II left the country in ruins. Two million lives had been lost . The country’s major cities, including the capital, Tokyo, had been largely destroyed by bombing raids.

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postwar japan

The defeat suffered by Japan in World War II left the country in ruins.

Two million lives had been lost.

The country’s major cities, including the capital, Tokyo, had been largely destroyed by bombing raids.

The atomic bomb had turned Hiroshima and Nagasaki into blackened wastelands.

The Allies had stripped Japan of its colonial empire.

Postwar Japan
occupied japan

To ensure that peace would prevail, the US began a process of demilitarization, or disbanding the Japanese armed forces.

The Japanese were left with only a small police force.

General MacArthur also began bringing war criminals to trial.

Out of 25 surviving defendants, former Premier Hideki Tojo and six others were condemned to hang.

Occupied Japan
occupied japan1

MacArthur then turned his attention to democratization, the process of creating a government elected by the people.

He and his American political advisers drew up a new constitution.

It changed the empire into a constitutional monarchy like that of Great Britain.

Occupied Japan
occupied japan2

MacArthur was instructed to broaden land ownership and increase the participation of workers and farmers in the new democracy.

MacArthur put forward a plan that required landlords with huge estates to sell land to the government.

The government then sold the land to tenant farmers at reasonable prices.

Other reforms gave workers the right to create independent labor unions.

Occupied Japan
occupation brings deep changes

The new constitution was the most important achievement of the occupation.

A long Japanese tradition viewed the emperor as divine. He was also an absolute ruler whose will was law.

The emperor now had to declare that he was not divine he became largely a figurehead—a symbol of Japan.

Occupation Brings Deep Changes
occupation brings deep changes1

The new constitution guaranteed that real political power in Japan rested with the people.

The people elected a two house parliament, called the Diet.

All citizens over the age of 20, including women, had the right to vote.

Occupation Brings Deep Changes
occupation brings deep changes2

The government was led by a prime minister chosen by a majority of the Diet.

A bill of rights protected basic freedoms.

Onekey provision of the constitution that the Japanese could no longer make war.

They could fight only if attacked

Occupation Brings Deep Changes
occupation brings deep changes3

In September 1951, the United States and 47 other nations signed a formal peace treaty with Japan.

6 months later, the U.S. occupation of Japan was over.

However, with no armed forces, the Japanese agreed to a continuing U.S. military presence to protect them

The US and Japan, were now allies

Occupation BringsDeep Changes
assignment

1. Describe what consequences Japan suffered after WWII.

2. Define demilitarization.

3. How was Japan democratized?

4. What reforms took place in the area of land ownership?

5. Describe the relationship between the US and Japan after the war.

Assignment