Background: In 1603, a Tokugawa shogunate (military dictatorship) ushered in a long period of isolation from foreign influence in order to secure its power. For 250 years this policy enabled Japan to enjoy stability and a flowering of its indigenous culture. Following the Treaty of Kanagawa with the United States in 1854, Japan opened its ports and began to intensively modernize and industrialize. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Japan became a regional power that was able to defeat the forces of both China and Russia. It occupied Korea, Formosa (Taiwan), and southern Sakhalin Island. In 1933 Japan occupied Manchuria and in 1937 it launched a full-scale invasion of China. Japan attacked US forces in 1941 - triggering America's entry into World War II - and soon occupied much of East and Southeast Asia. After its defeat in World War II, Japan recovered to become an economic power and a staunch ally of the US. While the emperor retains his throne as a symbol of national unity, actual power rests in networks of powerful politicians, bureaucrats, and business executives. The economy experienced a major slowdown starting in the 1990s following three decades of unprecedented growth, but Japan still remains a major economic power, both in Asia and globally. In 2005, Japan began a two-year term as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council.
Blogs from Saitama
Latest Blogs from Saitama
- October 15th 2010 I just had my first Japanese small talk with a total stranger!
by Words: 1289 Photos: 41
- September 5th 2010 First week at TIU, a trip to Tokyo, and the D Concert
by Words: 1745 Photos: 55
- September 5th 2010 Samishii and Fuji! (Part 2)
by Words: 2022 Photos: 8
- September 1st 2010 Miss me? I miss you!! "Samishiiiiii"
by Words: 1428 Photos: 3
- August 29th 2010 Japan is officially the Devil's armpit...
by Words: 957 Photos: 16
- August 28th 2010 Jet lag is a bitch
by Words: 733 Photos: 5
- August 26th 2010 This is Japan!
by Words: 874 Photos: 7
- May 7th 2010 Family Visit and a Bungy Vacation
by Words: 1185 Photos: 100
- April 30th 2010 Day 6 Update!!
by Words: 833 Photos: 17
- April 8th 2010 "We Are Diamonds!"
by Words: 1113 Photos: 46
- March 29th 2010 The gaijin has landed
by Words: 573 Photos: 1
- March 21st 2010 An entire street filled with Sweet Shops?!
by Words: 429 Photos: 9
- March 10th 2010 Japan-ada! Japan-ada! 14 GOLD!
by Words: 1364 Photos: 13
- February 8th 2010 Who cranked the fun dial to 11?
by Words: 1543 Photos: 25
- January 8th 2010 Fired and Coming Home
by Words: 820 Photos: 49
- December 21st 2009 Christmas and Karaoke!
by Words: 1294 Photos: 21
- December 6th 2009 More Vidz and Juicy Updates
by Words: 1198 Photos: 12
- December 3rd 2009 Welcome to my blog!
by Words: 144 Photos: 0
- November 24th 2009 Can't Stop Won't Stop!
by Words: 1024 Photos: 24
- November 15th 2009 Stories and Picture Time!
by Words: 1121 Photos: 27