Japan After World War II
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Rebuilding Japan After WWII, The Korean War, and The Vietnam War
Rebuilding Japan After World War II
Japan Surrenders • In 1945, the United States dropped atomic bombs on two Japanese cities- Hiroshima and Nagasaki. • The Japanese finally admitted defeat and surrendered. • Japanese farms and industries had been destroyed, the government was in a shambles, and the Japanese people no longer saw their emperor as a god-like hero.
Japan’s Post-War Infrastructure • Much of Japan’s infrastructure had been completely destroyed by battle and atomic bombs. • infrastructure- the basic structures or features of a city or nation; transportation, communication, sewage, water, and electric systems are all a part of infrastructure.
• Atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the U.S. in August 1945.
Hiroshima Before the Bomb
Hiroshima After the Bomb
• Nagasaki before and after the atomic bomb
U.S. Occupation of Japan • The U.S. was put in charge of helping to rebuild Japan. • Japan was now controlled by a U.S. army occupation led by General Douglas MacArthur. • MacArthur’s job was to rebuild Japan in a way that would guarantee that it would not pose a military threat to other countries in the future.
U.S. Occupation of Japan • Previously, Japanese society had been heavily focused on the military and warring. • The U.S. wanted Japan to become a peaceful, democratic nation.
Rebuilding Japan • The U.S. believed the social, political, and economic conditions that led to this heavy military focus had to be destroyed and the Japanese mindset changed. • Business leaders who had been tied to the old militaristic Japan were stripped of their power. • Transportation systems, industry, urban infrastructure, and businesses had to be rebuilt.
Rebuilding Japan • A land reform program was started. • Labor unions were created. • Japan got to keep its home islands, but had to give up control of all its overseas possessions. • Japan gave Manchuria back to China and gave up Taiwan. • In general, the Japanese people were happy with these political and economic changes.
Japan’s New Constitution • General MacArthur wanted Japan to have a democratic government, but he also appreciated the important place the Japanese emperor held in Japanese culture. • He decided Japan would become a Constitutional Monarchy. • He wrote a constitution for Japan that is still called the MacArthur Constitution today.
Japan’s New Constitution • The constitution created a two-house parliament called The Diet. • Everyone over the age of 20 could vote for members of the Diet. • The constitution also included a Bill of Rights and guaranteed basic freedoms. • The emperor remained as a symbol of the country, but was stripped of his power.
Japan’s New Constitution • The constitution stated that Japan could never again declare war on another country. • Japan is allowed to fight only if it is attacked first. • Japan could not use its land, sea, or air forces to settle international disputes. • Today, the Japanese government is one of the strongest in the world.
The Cold War Heats Up
American Involvement • Containment– The US policy to stop Communism from spreading to other countries
• Domino Theory– The belief that if one country fell to Communism, other countries would follow
This map is from an American magazine from 1950. This shows how much the US feared communism in the far east.
The Truman Doctrine • The Truman Doctrine stated that the USA would lend aid to any country not wishing to be suppressed by the political ideals (communism) of any other country.
United Nations • It would fight with the South Korean army. • Commanded by an American General – Douglas MacArthur • MacArthur was later fired by Truman for getting the Chinese involved in the war. MacArthur wanted to use nuclear weapons on the Chinese.
Soviet Union • Soviets sold Chinese military equipment, including artillery and MIG fighter planes. • The USSR also provided advisers and military hardware to the North Koreans. • Soviet pilots flew MIGs against US planes. • However, Stalin was unwilling to become involved with the United States in a war over Korea.
United States • The US provided the majority of the UN military forces which drove the North Koreans out of South Korea and still stand guard along the border. The US moved their troops into South Korea quickly. • The US and the Soviets agreed to divide Korea temporarily to avoid long term decisions regarding Korea's future.
• Although the United States took the lead in the Korean action, it did so under the order of the United Nations.
Why did China enter the war? • UN forces pushed north to China • Crossed 38th parallel – Yalu River and border with China
• Mao Zedong already made it clear that China would not tolerate foreign forces on border
What happens next? • October 14 to November 1, 1950 – Chinese send 180,000 of the People’s Volunteer Army to cross Yalu River – They pushed the American forces back
• November 2 – UN realizes that the attack was done by Communist China
“Home-by-Christmas” offensive • November 24 – MacArthur launches offensive attack • Chinese army retaliates with full force • American and South Korean units retreat • Ends January 1951
The Korean War Armistice • Designed to insure an end to warfare and all acts of armed force in Korea until a definitive peaceful could be achieved • It was signed on July 27,1953 • Covered issues such as - exchange of prisoners of war - location of a Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) • Intended as a temporary measure, but the 38th parallel remains standing even today.
Map of Korea
• After three years, July 27, 1953- ceasefire stopped the fighting • Although there was no declared winner, South Korea never succumbed to a communist rule.
• Korea is still split up into North Korea (communist) and South Korea (noncommunist) • The border between the two countries has remained one of the most heavily-armed stretches of land on Earth
American Involvement • The Geneva Convention – Divided Vietnam into North and South • North: Communist, controlled by Ho Chi Minh [Supported by China and the USSR]
• South: non-Communist, controlled by Ngo Dinh Diem [Supported by the US]
– Would allow the Vietnamese people to vote on which government they wanted – The US was greatly concerned whether or not Vietnam would “fall” to Communism
American Involvement • Gulf of Tonkin Resolution (1964)– The North Vietnamese allegedly attacked US Navy ships in the Gulf of Tonkin – President Lyndon Johnson received full support from Congress to increase US involvement • 1965: US ground troops sent into Vietnam
US Difficulties in Vietnam • Ho Chi Minh Trail– The supply line used by Ho Chi Minh and his troops – The US was never able to stop the supply line • Viet Cong– The Communist forces in South Vietnam that fought against the US and the South Vietnamese government • The CNN Effect – For the first time Americans could watch news cover of the war from their homes, caused a loss of support from the general public
The End of US Involvement • Lost the support of the American public – “Counter-Culture” movement • Anti-war groups, hippies, flower children, etc…
• The Tet Offensive (1968)– Large assault by the North Vietnamese Communist forces
• Vietnamization– The process of the US turning over control to the South Vietnamese Government while the US withdrew
The End of US Involvement • Paris Peace Accord (1973) – US troops pulled out of Vietnam
End of the War • The war ended in 1975 when the South Vietnamese surrendered to the North • 1976- North and South Vietnam were united into the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
Summary • What was the role of the United States in the rebuilding of Japan after WWII? • What are the reasons for foreign involvement in Korea and Vietnam in terms of containment of Communism? • What were the results of the Korean and Vietnam War?