British policy in the Far East in the period 1911 to 1915 aimed at preserving stability in the region as far as was feasible and at avoiding armed intervention of the powers in China. It was, therefore, essentially defensive in nature. Japanese policy, in contrast, was basically offensive in character — Japanese leaders wished to enhance the nation’s role in the Far East, the problem being that they were uncertain how to achieve their objective. Differences began to develop between Britain and Japan and the Anglo-Japanese alliance continued to lose much of its strength, although this was temporarily reversed following Japan’s entry into the world war in August 1914. In 1911 the alliance was revised and renewed with both governments possessing general confidence in each other. In 1915 this was no longer the case. Each harboured doubts concerning the other and disillusionment existed. However this must not be exaggerated. The alliance was still considered necessary by both countries for the immediate future, certainly for the duration of the war, but beyond that no forecast could be made.1
KeywordsJapanese Government Foreign Minister Pacific North British Policy Japanese Policy
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- 1.On Japan’s attitude during the war see F. W. Iklé, ‘Japanese-German Peace Negotiations during World War I’, in AHR LXXI (1966) 62–76.Google Scholar