Shawn Leonard

Geography of Japan

Japan is separated from the east coast of Asia by the Sea of Japan. Japan's four main islands are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Shikoku.The Ryukyu chain to the southwest was U.S.-occupied from 1945 to 1972, when it reverted to Japanese control. The Kurils to the northeast are Russian-occupied.

The Meiji Restoration (1868 - 1912)

On January 3, 1968, the Japanese emperor came back into leadership. It was led by a teenager named Mutsuhito. The Meiji Restoration took its place in Japanese history. The main policy of the restoration was to enrich the nation and strengthen the military.


The Japanese's main religion was Shintoism. Shintoism is the belief in spirits in nature. The Japanese also practiced Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and Sikhism. Japanese streets are decorated on Tanabata, Oban, Chirstmas, and mosques are decorated with lights and fireworks on Ramadan.

Rape of Nanking

In December of 1937, the Japanese Imperial Army marched into China's capital city of Nanking and proceeded to murder 300,000 out of 600,000 civilians and soldiers in the city. The six weeks of carnage would become known as the Rape of Nanking and represented the single worst atrocity during the World War II era in either the European or Pacific theaters of war. The Japanese had been bragging that they would conquer all of China in just three months. After finally defeating the Chinese at Shanghai in November, 50,000 Japanese soldiers then marched on toward Nanking.