Essay about Japan 's First World War

1054 Words May 24th, 2016 5 Pages
The Twenty-One Demands were a set of demands made during the First World War by the Empire of Japan under Prime Minister Ōkuma Shigenobu sent to the government of the Republic of China on January 8, 1915. The demands would greatly extend Japanese control of Manchuria and of the Chinese economy, and were opposed by Britain and the United States. In the final settlement Japan gained a little but lost a great deal of prestige and trust in Britain and the US.
The Chinese people responded with a spontaneous nationwide boycott of Japanese goods; Japan 's exports to China fell 40%. Britain was affronted and no longer trusted Japan as a partner. With the First World War underway, Japan 's position was strong and Britain 's was weak. Nevertheless, Britain forced Japan to drop the fifth set of demands that would have given Japan a large measure of control over the entire Chinese economy and ended the Open Door Policy. Japan obtained its first four sets of goals in a treaty with China on May 25, 1915.
Background
Japan had gained a large sphere of interest in northern China and Manchuria through its victories in the First Sino-Japanese War and the Russo-Japanese War, and had thus joined the ranks of the European imperialist powers in their scramble to establish political and economic domination over China. With the overthrow of the Qing dynasty in the Xinhai Revolution, and the establishment of the new Republic of China under General Yuan Shikai, Japan saw an opportunity to expand…

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