Japanese war plans against USSR?

Discussions on all aspects of the Japanese Empire, from the capture of Taiwan until the end of the Second World War.
Petterson
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Post by Petterson » 29 May 2006 10:19

I think that this topic is related to the Japanese war plan against the Soviets that you are talking about. It`s about convoys of the Western Allies that sailed to Vladivostok. I have learnt that the Japanese never tried to stop these ships. Is it true? If it´s true I can imagine how the Germans pressured the Japanese to stop the convays.

Ishiwara Takehiko
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Re: Japanese war plans against USSR?

Post by Ishiwara Takehiko » 14 Mar 2013 20:12

Sven-Eric wrote:I have heard some story about a Japanese war plan against the Soviets called the Kantokuen plan. According to that plan the attack would begin on 29 August 1941 but was cancelled due to heavy Soviet resistance to the Germans. Does anyone know if it is any truth in this?
関特演(Kantokuen) or full name 関東軍特種演習(Kantō-gun-tokushu-enshū). Of course, at the beginning these training were made for possible attack USSR. But "persimmon are not ripe." On the other hand, it was and a red herring. Stalin did not want to transfer Far Eastern divisions on the Eastern Front. Thus, Japan hoped to give at least some advantage to Hitler. But absolutely Kwantung Army was prepared to defend the border from Red Army because "South problem".
Sven-Eric wrote:Also, another story and that is the meeting with the Japanese government on 9 August 1945 where PM Suzuki is supposed to have said that the Soviet entrance in the war that morning made it impossible for the Japanese to keep on fighting. Does anyone know an exact source for that statement?
Yes, correct, as stated above. But it does not mean surrender. Explaining the reasons which caused the surrender of Japan in August 1945, the most frequently mentions defeat of the Kwantung Army and the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Next, begin discussion of the significance (or insignificance) for Japan such a large ground force as the Kwantung Army, economic and strategic importance of Manchukuo, factor of the nuclear deterrent, or, conversely, its insignificance in 1945. Problem of all these arguments is that it do not take into consideration thoughts and motives of those who actually decided to surrender - the Emperor of Japan and his Cabinet. Some still believes it is possible to defeat enemy in the battle for the Japanese island and thus avoid unconditional surrender, to defend system of government, to protect the land and the Emperor and to provide basis for development of nation in the future. This was the decision of Supreme War Council since June 8, 1945. Another view was held by others, especially Foreign Minister Togo, believing that the United States and its allies are determined to force Japan to surrender and have all the means to do so, especially after the inevitable entry into the war the Soviet Union. This view soon gained support at the highest level - 22 June, it was an extraordinary meeting of the Supreme Council, and the Emperor expressed his desire to end the war. Morning of August 9, it became known that USSR entered the war against Japan. "The second group" decided to seize the moment - Foreign Minister Togo paid a visit to Prime Minister Suzuki and Minister of Marine Yonai by convincing them of need in the circumstances to accept the Potsdam Declaration. At 10:30 am the Emperor convened the Supreme War Council, with the surrender, in agenda of the meeting. "The first group" (primarily War Minister Anami, Chief of Staff Umezu and Chief of Naval Staff Toyoda) found themselves in a difficult position. And yet, the War Minister believed that Japan has a good chance to repel the invasion of the islands, inflicting unacceptable losses to enemy, and therefore not in a position to accept an unconditional surrender, without any counter-terms. The Cabinet has not come to an agreement, and the next day, August 10, continued meeting of the Supreme Council. The positions have not changed. But the prime minister Suzuki summed up by saying that decision of the Emperor will be decision of the Council. Emperor voted for the "second group." Finally, on the evening of the same day was published imperial declaration declaring acceptance terms of the Potsdam Declaration, "since that declaration does not contain any requirements that affect the prerogatives of His Majesty as a sovereign ruler". August 12 The Allies gave the answer, formulated in rather vague terms, in the spirit of what the adoption of the surrender, the whole authority of the Emperor and the Japanese government will be subject to the Supreme Commander Allied Forces, and the form of the Government of Japan will ultimately be determined by the freely expressed will of people. The same day, Foreign Minister Togo reported response to the Emperor. The Emperor gave his consent to Allied response and ordered to report to the Prime Minister. Such a harsh response of the Allies exacerbated the situation between the "first and second groups". Even on night of August 13, was the idea of a military coup, with elimination of government's supporters of "making peace", but idea was not supported. In the end, authority of the Emperor played a role, and after three days of meetings of the Supreme Council and the Cabinet, in August 14, 1945 was adopted imperial decree about end of war. Thus, we can conclude that neither atomic bombs nor entry of USSR into the war did not affected at surrender. The issue of Japan's surrender was not so much military as political. Japanese leaders realized loss of the war and opinions were different only in issue of whether it is possible to achieve more acceptable peace terms by stubborn resistance and diplomacy or should adopt a declaration at any cost. Soviet Union's entry into the war and the atomic bombing strengthened arguments of the"second group".
Larry D. wrote:
In Franks book about the Japanese government meeting on 9 August, does it say anything if the a-bombs were discussed by Suzuki and his cabinet?
From what I can gather, only indirectly. Hiroshima had been discussed during the two days before.
Yes. But what about Nagasaki - the atomic bomb was dropped during the meeting of the Supreme Council, so, probably, this fact was unknown for Council. But in any case, the "second group" would use it as an another argument against the "first".
Petterson wrote:I have learnt that the Japanese never tried to stop these ships. Is it true?
Yes, it is. I'm sure at 100%, if you've heard about it, then it could be from the Soviet/Russian literature/documentaries films. This myth same like the myth about the multimillion Kwantung Army. Actually, for Japan was important not to violate the neutrality pact.
Petterson wrote:I can imagine how the Germans pressured the Japanese to stop the convoys.
Moreover, the Germans put pressure on Japan to start a war against the Soviet Union.

Best wishes,
Takehiko

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