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Differences regarding Togo’s surprise attack on Port Arthur

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Chapter Summary

In the first half of the twentieth century, Japan fought two wars— the Russo-Japanese War of 1904–5 and the Pacific War of 1941– 1945—against Russia and America respectively, the two great powers that would go on to divide the world during the second half of the century. This chapter outlines the status of the Japanese Navy in the Far East prior to the outbreak of war, to clarify the differences in the views of Admiral Togo Heihachiro and the Naval Staff, and finally to consider the impact of this clash of opinions on the subsequent development of the campaign, both on land and at sea. The chapter purposes to use the hitherto little read source, the “Confidential Naval War History,” to outline the planning process and implementation of operations against Russia by the Japanese Navy, paying specific attention to the surprise attack operation on Port Arthur.

Keywords: Admiral Togo Heihachiro; Japanese Navy; Naval Staff; Pacific War; Port Arthur; Russo-Japanese War

10.1163/ej.9789004154162.i-583.19
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