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A major part of Japans history from the late Nineteenth Century up to 1914 was military aggression During this period there were many economic social and political pressures that facilitated military expansion Japanese militarism manifested on the Asian mainland in wars aggression and military presence on foreign soil Japans foreign policy was influenced by its government education religion and social structure Economic pressures facilitating military expansion up to 1914 Japan was a new consumer economy that had changed from feudal economy in a very short time period of forty years This caused many problems and in the 1890s Japan was in a severe economic depression and Japan was importing far more than they were exporting Japan found it difficult to break into established overseas markets where countries had been trading for much longer than Japan And so Japan was under pressure to expand its borders for raw materials and new overseas markets to sell to Japan also wanted recognition from the western powers as a valuable market During this time period there was also social pressures for Japan to expand The traditional Bushido the fighting spirit of Japan enabled the military to expand as opposed to if Japan were a more peaceful pacifist country A change in social structure meant that anyone could become part of the army from the old class of the Samurai warriors In 1873 conscription was introduced mainly from peasants to serve three years with the motto Enrich the country strengthen the army Another social pressure to expand was increased urbanisation By 1907 Tokyo and Osaka had water works and other public facilities but before this and in many other cities they had no amenities like modern sewerage systems There was also pollution a problem encountered by every country during industrialisation especially prominent due to the cramped conditions of Japanese cities Political pressures also helped Japan to expand up to 1914 There were many changes to the political
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