Why Did the Japanese Take over Manchuria and What Did the League of Nations Response Indicate About Its Position in 1930s? (9 Marks)

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There are a few reasons why the Japanese chose to take over Manchuria. One reason is that the Japanese had owed a rail line and had claimed that the Chinese had sabotaged the railway; this was called the Mukden incident. The Japanese then sent in their own troops to Manchuria and claimed that they had acted in self defence and were just resolving that issue.
Another reason is that the Japanese had suffered from the great depression and was seeking a way to overcome the depression by expanding its empire, the Japanese was at the time being run by the military and therefore was building up its army and therefore the Japanese invaded Manchuria to show how powerful their military was. Finally, Japan felt they needed to take over Manchuria was because Manchuria had much raw materials and by making Manchuria part of Japan they would have an unlimited supply of resources that there country was in need of and they will be able to expand their economy and therefore Japan wouldn’t be in such an economical crisis.

The League of Nations had responded by sending over some officers to asses which country was the aggressor although it was thought from beginning that Japan was the aggressive country. The league took a long time to respond and we see that the league wasn’t as powerful as before, as when they did impose economical sanctions Japan had not listened. Japan carried on with their invasion and the League was powerless to stop them as they had no army to stop them with. Another reason the League didn’t stop them was as they were a powerful country and we see that the league only sorted out successful disputes when dealing with countries that didn’t have much power. As well as that, Britain and France were also suffering from the great depression and focused on restoring their countries problems rather than sorting out disputes. Japan was also far away from Europe so the league didn’t feel as responsible to deal with the affairs that were not in Europe.
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