This week, we’re turning our attention to the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05. In our first episode, we’ll introduce our stage — Manchuria — and our players — Russia and Japan.

Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Drea, Edward. Japan’s Imperial Army: Its Rise and Fall, 1853-1945.

Purdue, Peter. China Marches West.

Westwood, J.N. Russia Against Japan.

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Manchuria today. On this map, Port Arthur is labeled by its modern name of Dalian, and Mukden/Fengtian by its modern name of Shenyang.

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Territorial exchanges as a part of the 1689 Treaty of Nerchinsk. The Chinese actually defeated the Russians in this undeclared war, and gained control of a vast swath of territory.

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A French map from the early 1700s showing Manchuria. This territory was off limits to Han Chinese until the mid 19th century, when the pressures of imperialism necessitated mass migrations to the territory to secure Qing hold over it.

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Harbin in the 1950s. Though the photo comes from far later than our story takes place, the building depicted – St. Nicholas’s Church – dates back to the era of Russian occupation and is a good example of durable Russian influence in the area.