From the commercial treaty of 1856, which accepted Japan's right to restrict U.S. opium exports severely, to the Philippine Commission's exploration of Japanese drug control policy at home and in Formosa ( Taiwan) in 1903-1904, American policy makers looked to Japan as a potential model for U.S. drug control policy abroad. 1 By the 1930s, however, the U.S. relationship with Japan had changed drastically. Despite participating in the Shanghai, Hague, and Geneva conferences, in apparent compliance with the American agenda, Japan had also emerged as a primary trafficker in morphine, heroin, cocaine, and opium.
This chapter explores Japanese drug policy, especially with regard to the trade in manufactured narcotics, from 1906, when allegations of Japanese morphine transshipment into China were first made, to 1938, when Japan withdrew from the Opium Advisory Committee of the League of Nations. This analysis reveals that state capacity had a selective influence on Japanese policy makers different from that found in the German case. Whereas German policy makers faced a well-established narcotics industry before American pressure began, the Japanese narcotics industry developed during the interwar period, in the aftermath of the Hague deliberations. The Japanese state was more fragmented between civil and military authorities than that of