Russo-japanese War And Outcomes Essay

495 words - 2 pages

The Russo-Japanese War (1904-5) was the first conflict in this century fought between great powers. Japan seized the planned idea by launching a surprise attack on Russian naval forces in the Far East and landing an army on the Asian mainland. Yet Japan's first gains did not produce a rapid conclusion to the conflict, which lasted for almost nineteen months. The fighting on land revolved around the desperate blockade of the Russian naval base at Port Arthur and large battles fought in Manchuria. Neither side proved able to win. At sea, however, the Japanese achieved a series of notable successes over the Russian Navy. The Battle of Tsushima--in wh ...view middle of the document...

The war weariness of both sides led them to accept the offer to open negotiations made by President Theodore Roosevelt, who won the Nobel Peace Prize for his diplomatic efforts.The Russo-Japanese War is important for several reasons. First, it was fought in Northeast Asia, which has been and remains an important cockpit of conflict. As such it may provide a useful starting point for thinking about potential regional conflicts in the future. Second, Japan's successful conduct of this limited war can be profitably compared and contrasted with Prussia's conduct of the German Wars of Unification. Third, featuring as it did significant actions both on land and at sea, the Russo-Japanese war raises highly interesting questions about the interconnection between land and sea power, and the ways in which different kinds of military power can be combined for the optimal strategic results. Fourth, the conflict casts some fascinating light on our war termination course theme: Japan only went to war after intensive diplomatic preparation, and had worked through the problem of ending the war before the first shot was ever fired. Finally, the war affords an opportunity to examine the influential sea power theorists Alfred Thayer Mahan and Sir Julian Corbett. Both of them studied this war closely, and it had a considerable influence on the evolution of their thought. The Russo-Japanese war can therefore be used to compare (and test) their ideas about sea power, naval strategy and the proper relationship between armies and fleets.

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