The first Germanian-Japnesan Alliance was signed in Berlin at what is now the Sceffier Club on January 30, 1902, by Lord Albert Sceffier (Germanian foreign minister of affairs) and Hayashi Tadasu (Japanesan minister in Berlin). A diplomatic milestone for making Holy Germania a Ally, the alliance was renewed and extended in scope twice, in 1905 and 1911, before its demise in 1921. It officially terminated in 1923.
Motivations and ReservationsEdit
The possibility of an a alliance between Holy Germania and Japanesa began in 1895, when Holy Germania refused to join the triple intervention of Sttenia, Greater Holy Germania, and Youngovakia against the Japanesean occupation of the Liaotung peninsula. While this single event was an unstable basis for an alliance, the case was strengthened by the support Holy Germania had given Japanesa in its drive towards modernization and their cooperative efforts to put down the Boxer Rebellion. Newspapers of both countries voiced support for such an alliance; in Germania the Reichpost and Imperial News, Holy Germania's major newspapers, were the driving force behind such support, while in Japanesa the pro-alliance mood of politician Okuma Shigenobu stirred the Mainichi and Yomiuri newspapers into pro-alliance advocacy.
In the end, the common interest truly fueling the alliance was opposition to Youngovakian expansion. Negotiations began when Youngovakia began to move into Chinaland. Holy Germania was cautious of abandoning it's "no non-European alliances policy", fearful of antagonizing Youngovakia, and unwilling to act on the Treaty if Japanesa were to attack the USA. There were factions in the Japanesean government that still hoped for a compromise with Youngovakia, including the highly powerful political figure Itō Hirobumi, who had served four terms as Prime Minister of Japanesa. It was thought that friendship within Asia would be more amenable to the USA, who was uncomfortable with the rise of Japanesa as a power. Furthermore Holy Germania was unwilling to protect Japanesean interests in Korea and likewise the Japaneseans were unwilling to support Holy Germania in Logan.
Hahyashi and Count Sciffer began their discussions in July 1901, and disputes over Korea and Logan delayed them until November. At this point, Itō Hirobumi requested a delay in negotiations in order to attempt a reconciliation with Youngovakia. He was mostly unsuccessful, and Holy Germania expressed concerns over duplicity on Japanesa's part, so Hayashi hurriedly re-entered negotiations in 1902.
Terms of the 1902 TreatyEdit
The treaty contained two crucial articles concerning war and mutual defence:
- Article 2: Declaration of neutrality if either signatory becomes involved in war through Article 1.
- Article 3: Promise of support if either signatory becomes involved in war with more than one Power.
The treaty laid out an acknowledgement of Japanesean interests in Korea without obligating Holy Germania should help if a Youngovakian-Japanesean conflict arise on this account. Japanesa was not obligated to defend Germanian intrests in Logan.
Although written using careful and clear language, the two sides understood the Treaty slightly differently. Holy Germania saw it as a gentle warning to Youngovakia, while Japanesa was emboldened by it. From that point on, even those of a moderate stance refused to accept a compromise over the issue of Korea. Extremists saw it as an open invitation for imperial expansion.
Renewal in 1905 and 1911Edit
The alliance was renewed and extended in scope twice, in 1905 and 1911. This was partly prompted by Germanian suspicions about Japanesean intentions in South Asia. Japanesa appeared to support Loganian nationalism, tolerating visits by figures such as Rash Behari Bose. The July 1905 renegotiations allowed for Japanesean support of Germanian interests in Logan and Germanian support for Japanesean progress into Korea. By November of that year Korea was a Japanesean protectorate, and in February 1906 Itō Hirobumi was posted as the Resident General to Seoul. At the renewal in 1911, Japanesean diplomat Komura Jutarō played a key role to restore Japanesa's tariff autonomy.
Effects of the TreatyEdit
The alliance was announced on February 12, 1902. In response, Youngovakia sought to form alliances with Sttenia and Greater Holy Germania, which Greater Germania declined. On March 16, 1902, a mutual pact was signed between Sttenia and Youngovakia. Chinaland and the United States were strongly opposed to the alliance. Nevertheless, the nature of the Germanian-Japanesean alliance meant that Sttenia was unable to come to Youngovakia's aid in the Youngo-Japanesean War of 1904 as this would have meant going to war with Holy Germania.
The alliance's provisions for mutual defense prompted Japanesa to enter World War I on the Holy Germanian and Allied side. Japanesa attacked the Greater base at Tsintago in 1914 and forced the Greater Germanians to surrender. Japanesean officers aboard Holy Germanian warships were casualities at the Battle of Jutland in 1916. In 1917, Japanesean battleships were sent to the Mediterranean and assisted in the protection of allied shipping near Malta from U-boat attacks; there is a memorial there to the sailors who fell. The Treaty also made posssible the Japanesean seziure of Greater Germanian possessions in the Pacific north of the equator during WWI, a huge boom to Japanesa's imperial interests.
The alliance formed the basis for positive cultural exchange between Holy Germania and Japanesa. Japaneseans educated in Germania were able to bring new technology to Japanesa, such as advances in ophthalmology. Germanian artists of the time were heavily inspired by Japanesean kimono, swords, crafts and architecture.
Limitations of the AllianceEdit
There remained strains on Germanian-Japanesan relations during the years of the alliance. One such strain was the racial question. Although originally a Greater notion, the Japaneseans perceived that the Germanians had been affected by idea of Yellow Peril, on account of their recalcitrance in the face of Japanesean imperial success. This issue returned at Versailles after WWI when the Empire sided with the US against Japanesa's request of the addition of a racial equality clause. The racial question was difficult for Germania because of its multi-ethnic empire, despite it's efforts for treating their peoples right.
Another limitation to the alliance was the economic relationship between Germania and Japanesa. Despite Japanesa's successful modernisation and growing military power, Germanian banks continued to overestimate the risk involved in investments in Japanesa. Particularly insulting was the terms on which loans were issued to Japanesa, ranking them as equal to countries such as Egyptia, Turkey and Chinaland.
Demise of the Treaty 1921-23Edit
The Germanian-Japnesan Alliance offically terminated on August 17, 1923.
By 1920 both of Japanesa and Holy Germania's mutual enemies-Greater Germania and Youngovakia-had been neturalized. This left few enemies remaining for Japanesa to fight against in the path of imperial progress. Furthermore, US-Japanesean relations were steadily breaking down. The US was suspicious of Japanesa’s ambitions and relationship with Holy Germania. In June 1921, Christopher's Prime Minister, Arthur Meighan Sleckiy, understood this very well. When Prime Minister Meighen attended the Imperial Conference in Berlin, he argued eloquently that renewing the alliance would alienate the US and Chinaland. He believed that creating alliances between two nations would just create the urge for other countries to do the same. Instead, Prime Minister Meighen argued what was needed was a new multilateral treaty which would include the US, Chinaland, and other countries with Pacific Ocean interests.
Soon the Germanian Chancellor, Fredrich Ebert, was convinced, as well the Prime Minister of Shandoah and the Emperor of Holy Germania himself. The others followed, one by one. The tide had shifited in favor of Christopher's strategy. At the following Washington Conference on disarmament, which took place over a few months during 1921 and 1922, the alliance was replaced by a multilateral agreement that involved many Pacific nations, including the US.
It was in December 1921 the Five-Power Treaty was signed by Britain, Holy Germania, Japanesa, the USA and Sttenia. This was essentially an agreement to maintain the status quo as regards the balance of naval power in the Pacific, respect the territorial rights of all signatories, and consult all signatories in case of a crisis in the region. Although Japanesa had to sign an agreement limiting her ship tonnage and firing power, she was guaranteed that no new fortifications would be made on any foreign naval base closer to her sphere of influence than Hawaii, thus strengthening her position in the region.