Rising Japan: Sino-Japanese war, 1894

Sino-Japanese War, 1894–95 , a conflict between China and Japan over domination of Korea. It marked the beginning of Japanese expansionism on the Asian main-land. The war had its origin in Japan's ambition to gain an empire. The Japanese had found a pretext several times for sending troops into Korea, for centuries a semi-independent vassal of the Chinese Empire, which moved to defend it. In 1894, following a series of armed clashes in Korea, each side declared war. Japan's superior equipment brought about China's defeat within eight months. By the Treaty of Shimonoseki (1895), Japan was given Taiwan and the Pescadores Islands. Also, the treaty required that China recognize the independence of Korea, thus making it possible for Japan to bring the nation into its sphere of influence.

July 14, 1894: Lieutenant Kuroi of the Japanese Intelligence Department informs the Japanese Government that the British have chartered the steamer Kowshing as a transport for Chinese troops. The Kowshing is commanded by Captain Galsworthy of the British mercantile marine and carries, besides her officers and crew of 64 men, 1100 Chinese soldiers.

July 25, 1894 At the Battle of Pungdo the Japanese cruisers Yoshino, Naniwa and Akitsushima sink the British steamer Kowshing, knowing full well its charter status as a British transport. About half the Chinese are picked up by a French gunboat or escape to the islands. No attempt whatsoever to save any lives is made by the Japanese.

July 28-29, 1894 Major-General Oshima Yoshimasa leads 4,000 mixed Japanese and Korean troops on a rapid forced march from Seoul to face 3,500 Chinese troops garrisoned at Seonghwan Station. The Chinese gradually lose ground to the superior Japanese numbers, and finally retreat towards Pyongyang. Chinese casualties amount to 500 killed and wounded, compared to 82 Japanese casualties.

August 1, 1894 War is officially declared between China and Japan over Korea.

September 15-16, 1894 Imperial Japanese Army lays seige to Pyongyang, eventually defeating the Chinese by an attack from the rear. When the Chinese finally surrender, total casualties are: 2000 killed and around 4000 wounded for the Chinese, 102 men killed and 433 wounded for the Japanese.

September 17, 1894 The Imperial Japanese Navy destroys 8 out of 10 warships of the Chinese Beiyang Fleet off the mouth of the Yalu River.

October 25, 1894 Having crossed the Yalu river undetected the day before, Japanese forces invade Chinese territory at Jiuliangcheng with the loss of only 4 killed and 140 wounded. The Japanese lay siege to the strategic port of L�shunkou

March 26, 1895 Japanese forces invade and occupy the Pescadores Islands off Taiwan without casualties.

March 29, 1895 Japanese forces under Admiral Motonori Kabayama occupy northern Taiwan.

April 17, 1895 China and Japan sign the peace treaty of Shimonoseki. China recognizes the total independence of Korea and cedes the Liaodong Peninsula, Taiwan (Formosa) and the Pescadores Islands to Japan 'in perpetuity.'

April 23, 1895 Triple Intervention: Russia persuades Germany and France to gang up on the Japanese with unrelenting diplomatic pressure; an attempt to deny them their war prize of Port Arthur. The three powers successfully compel Japan to return the Liaodong peninsula to China this day.

This led to the subsequent Russo-Japanese war of 1904
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Points To Ponder


It is difficult to distinguish between the quality of both the German and Russian soldiers. Both were motivated by their love for their motherland. But there were others factors that drove the two sides to such desperate fighting.

One, both sides knew that this was a no-holds bar war. Not fighting was thus not an option.

Second, both Hitler and Stalin had squads that killed any deserter. Turning away from fighting was just not possible.

Thus was seen some of the most bitter, brutal and desperate fighting on the WW2 eastern (Russian) Front.
"Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
-- George Santayana


"Be polite; write diplomatically; even in a declaration of war one observes the rules of politeness."
--Otto von Bismarck

"When the enemy advances, withdraw; when he stops, harass; when he tires, strike; when he retreats, pursue.'
--Mao Zedong


"The main thing is to make history, not to write it."
--Otto von Bismarck

"When you have to kill a man it costs nothing to be polite."
--Winston Churchill


"In time of war the loudest patriots are the greatest profiteers."
--August Bebel

"God is not on the side of the big battalions, but on the side of those who shoot best."

Quotes about War....

"Anyone who has ever looked into the glazed eyes of a soldier dying on the battlefield will think hard before starting a war."
---Otto von Bismarck


"Naturally the common people don't want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor in America, nor in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
--Hermann Goering


"To conquer the enemy without resorting to war is the most desirable. The highest form of generalship is to conquer the enemy by strategy."
--Tzu Sun

"All men are brothers, like the seas throughout the world; So why do winds and waves clash so fiercely everywhere?"
--Emperor Hirohito