Manchuria, the Cockpit of Asia

By Colonel P. T. Etherton; H. Hessell Tiltman | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VII
INTERNATIONAL RIVALRIES IN THE FAR EAST

THE United States share much of the limelight playing upon the various nations of East and West, for they were the first to draw the Japanese in 1853 from their islands of seclusion and the policy of aloofness that had characterized them, whilst the first treaty that Japan ever concluded with a Western nation was that of March 31, 1854, with the United States.

By a policy of peaceful penetration the Americans brought about a new Japanese outlook, culminating in the opening up of the country to the commercial enterprise of the world. Whilst the foundations of progress and friendship were being laid, the years of isolation had been put aside, and the enterprising and imitative Japanese began to tour abroad and see something of the great world beyond their own shores. Missions set out to investigate the wonders of the West, the creation of armies and navies was gone into and how they might be adapted to Japanese needs. They studied the building up of a nation and its ordeal by battle, recognizing that there might come a time when questions would have to be answered by a tribunal to which all nations have, at one time or another, inclined--the assize of war.

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