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Curse on This CountryThe Rebellious Army of Imperial Japan$
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Danny Orbach

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781501705281

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501705281.001.0001

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“By Not Stopping”

“By Not Stopping”

Military Insubordination and the Taiwan Expedition, 1874

(p.38) 3 “By Not Stopping”
Curse on This Country

Danny Orbach

Cornell University Press

This chapter focuses on the Taiwan Expedition of 1874 and its ramifications for the development of military insubordination in Japan. On December 17, 1871, two ships from the Kingdom of Ryūkyū were washed up on the coast of southern Taiwan. The crew of these ships were butchered, sparking a debate about whether Japan should invade Taiwan. The chapter first describes the events that culminated in the Taiwan Expedition. In particular, it considers Japanese Foreign Lord Soejima Taneomi's diplomatic mission of inquiry to China in 1873 and the Taiwan problem under the administration of Ōkubo Toshimichi. It then examines the decision of Lieutenant General Saigō Tsugumichi, the commander of the Taiwan Expeditionary Force, to invade Taiwan against explicit government orders. Finally, the chapter discusses the end of the Taiwan Expedition.

Keywords:   military insubordination, Taiwan Expedition 1874, Japan, Kingdom of Ryūkyū, Taiwan, Soejima Taneomi, diplomatic mission, China, Ōkubo Toshimichi, Saigō Tsugumichi

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