African American Views of the Japanese: Solidarity or by Reginald Kearney

By Reginald Kearney

African American perspectives of the japanese unearths a web page of historical past lengthy missed. In black the United States, jap weren't continuously identified for racist feedback, Sambo photos, and discriminatory hiring practices. as soon as, hundreds of thousands of African american citizens considered the japanese as "champions of the darker races." the following Reginald Kearney examines the position performed via Japan and its humans within the desires of prosperity for plenty of African americans. He additionally uncovers the surprise many blacks felt upon studying that this excessive regard for the japanese have been betrayed via discriminatory feedback and activities. yet total Kearney continues to be positive that the African American-Japanese rift should be mended.

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The Japanese government sent its plenipotentiaries to Portsmouth with objectives categorized as absolutely indispens page_32 Page 33 able, relatively and minimally important. Among its first items, the Japanese government wanted acknowledgment of its suzerainty over Korea, withdrawal of Russian troops from Manchuria within a specified time, and cession of the Liaotung Peninsula and Trans-Siberian Railway. These were considered absolutely vital to achieving Japan's war aims and guaranteeing its security.

Russia, found it even easier to choose the side of Japan: they could point to the persecution of Jews and slavic minorities as analogous to the racial system in America. The Washington Bee was quick to suggest that the sympathies of black folks ought to be with the Japanese, equating the Russian soldiers with Southern white men and a Russian triumph with a victory for color prejudice. 28 page_28 Page 29 Grimke succinctly summed up what he perceived to be the general black attitude toward the Russo-Japanese War.

It was the sense of the Freeman that Japan lost at the conference table in Portsmouth gains rightfully earned on the battlefield. The tone of the St. Louis Palladium was especially irate: "Japan conceded . . she withdrew . . she gave up . . she receded . . she abandoned. . " The Palladium sought consolation in the thought that, while Russia might have gotten the diplomatic victory, the Japanese could lay claim to the moral victory. 39 While the view that Japan should have pushed its diplomatic objectives further even at the risk of continued warfare was com page_33 Page 34 patible with the mass opinion in Japan, it demonstrated an ignorance of Japan's military situation.

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