Meiji Restoration Thesis

Meiji Restoration Thesis-84
Each successive assault on China’s perceived centre-of-gravity met with a measure of tactical success, but never a strategic outcome.Meanwhile, Japan only made its own centre of gravity more vulnerable: the Japanese economy stalled, nationalism within China rose to levels previously unseen, and ultimately Japan found itself in a suicidal war with the United States that resulted in the complete collapse of Japan’s maritime security.captures the rise and fall of Japanese maritime strategy over time while applying a critical template to Japanese grand strategy in each of the separate wars between 18.

Each successive assault on China’s perceived centre-of-gravity met with a measure of tactical success, but never a strategic outcome.

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As Paine notes in the final line of the conclusion, Japan and her neighbours have yet to overcome the consequences of the wars from 1894 to 1945.

Each of the conflicts began with a surprise attack before a formal declaration of war (something planners at the Naval War College warned about in the decades before Pearl Harbor).

Each of the conflicts aimed at overturning the regional balance of power by replacing China, then Russia, and then the United States as the dominant regional power.

Thus, Japan’s strategic approach shifted in the early- to mid-twentieth century from a focus on maritime control to a focus on continental control, where Japan steadily lost its competitive edge.

The Sino-Japanese and Russo-Japanese wars were a narrow victory, but Japan prevailed through superior definition of objectives and unity of command.

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