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Manchukuo (1932–1934)
滿洲國 or 满洲国  Mǎnzhōuguó  (Chinese)
満州国  Manshū-koku  (Japanese)

(Great) Empire of Manchukuo (1934–1945)
(大)滿洲帝國 or (大)满洲帝国
(Dà) Mǎnzhōu Dìguó  (Chinese)
(大)満州帝国  (Dai) Manshū Teikoku  (Japanese)
Puppet state of the Empire of Japan

Flag Imperial Seal
National Anthem of Manchukuo
Location of Manchukuo (red) within Imperial Japan's sphere of influence.
Capital Hsinking (Changchun)
Tonghua (Linjiang)
Languages Japanese
Mandarin Chinese
Manchu (unofficial)[1]
Government Single-party state (1932-1945)
Constitutional monarchy Under Authoritarian-Personalist Dictatorship
Chief Executive
 -  1932–1934 Aisin-Gioro Puyi
 -  1934–1945 Kangde (Aisin-Gioro Puyi)
Prime Minister
 -  1932–1935 Zheng Xiaoxu
 -  1935–1945 Zhang Jinghui
Legislature Legislative Council
Historical era Interbellum · World War II
 -  Established 1932
 -  Disestablished 1945
Currency Manchukuo yuan
Today part of  China
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese 滿洲國
Simplified Chinese 满洲国
Literal meaning Manchu State
Japanese name
Kanji 満州国
Kana まんしゅうこく
Empire of Manchuria
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese 大滿洲帝國
Simplified Chinese 大满洲帝国
Japanese name
Kanji 大満州帝国
Kana だいまんしゅうていこく

Manchukuo (traditional Chinese: 滿洲國; simplified Chinese: 满洲国; pinyin: Mǎnzhōuguó; Japanese: 滿洲国; literally: "State of Manchuria") was a puppet state in Northeast China and Inner Mongolia, which was governed under a form of constitutional monarchy. The area, collectively known as Manchuria by westerners and Japanese, was designated by China's erstwhile Qing Dynasty as the "homeland" of the ruling family's ethnic group, the Manchus, but the Manchus themselves never used "Manchuria" (滿洲) as a place name to refer to the area. In 1931, the region was seized by Japan following the Mukden Incident and a pro-Japanese government was installed one year later with Puyi, the last Qing emperor, as the nominal regent and emperor.[2] Manchukuo's government was abolished in 1945 after the defeat of Imperial Japan at the end of World War II. The territories formally claimed by the puppet state were first seized in the Soviet invasion of Manchuria in August 1945,[3] and then formally transferred to Chinese administration in the following year.[4]

Manchus formed a minority in Manchukuo, whose largest ethnic group were Han Chinese. The population of Koreans increased during the Manchukuo period, and there were also Japanese, Mongols, White Russians and other minorities. The Mongol regions of western Manchukuo were ruled under a slightly different system in acknowledgement of the Mongolian traditions there. The southern part of the Liaodong Peninsula was ruled by Japan as the Kwantung Leased Territory.


  • History 1
    • Background 1.1
    • Origins 1.2
    • Diplomatic recognition 1.3
    • World War II and aftermath 1.4
  • Politics 2
    • Head of State 2.1
    • Prime Minister 2.2
  • Administrative divisions 3
  • Demographics 4
    • Population of main cities 4.1
    • Japanese population 4.2
  • Economy 5
  • Transport 6
  • Military 7
    • Manchukuo Imperial Army 7.1
    • Manchukuo Imperial Guards 7.2
    • Manchukuo Imperial Navy 7.3
    • Manchukuo Imperial Air Force 7.4
    • War crimes in Manchukuo 7.5
    • Drug trafficking 7.6
  • Education 8
  • Culture 9
    • Film 9.1
    • Dress 9.2
  • Sport 10
  • National symbols 11
  • Stamps and postal history 12
  • In popular culture 13
  • See also 14
  • References 15
  • Further reading 16
    • Other sources 16.1
  • External links 17



"Manchuria" is a transcription of the Japanese reading of the Chinese word "滿洲" which means Manchu, which in Japanese is Manshū, which in turn dates from the 19th century. The name Manzhou was invented and given to the Jurchen people by Hong Taiji in 1635 as a new name for their ethnic group, however, the name "Manchuria" was never used by the Manchus or the Qing dynasty itself to refer to their homeland. According to the Japanese scholar Junko Miyawaki-Okada, the Japanese geographer Takahashi Kageyasu was the first to use the term 满洲 (Manshū) as a place name in 1809 in the Nippon Henkai Ryakuzu, and it was from that work where Westerners adopted the name.[5][6] According to Mark C. Elliott, Katsuragawa Hoshū's 1794 work, the Hokusa bunryaku, was where 满洲 (Manshū) first appeared as a place name was in two maps included in the work: "Ashia zenzu" and "Chikyū hankyū sōzu" which were also created by Katsuragawa.[7] 满洲 (Manshū) then began to appear as a place names in more maps created by Japanese like Kondi Jūzō, Takahashi Kageyasu, Baba Sadayoshi and Yamada Ren. These maps were brought to Europe by the Dutch Philipp von Siebold.[8] According to Nakami Tatsuo, Philip Franz von Siebold was the one who brought the usage of the term Manchuria to Europeans, after borrowing it from the Japanese, who were the first to use it in a geographic manner in the eighteenth century, while neither the Manchu nor Chinese languages had a term in their own language equivalent to "Manchuria" as a geographic place name.[9] According to Bill Sewell, it was Europeans who first started using Manchuria as a name to refer to the location and it is "not a genuine geographic term."[10] The historian Gavan McCormack agreed with Robert H. G. Lee's statement that "The term Manchuria or Man-chou is a modern creation used mainly by westerners and Japanese", with McCormack writing that the term Manchuria is imperialistic in nature and has no "precise meaning", since the Japanese deliberately promoted the use of "Manchuria" as a geographic name to promote its separation from China while they were setting up their puppet state of Manchukuo.[11]

The Japanese had their own motive for deliberately spreading the usage of the term Manchuria.[12] The historian Norman Smith wrote that "The term "Manchuria" is controversial".[13] Professor Mariko Asano Tamanoi said that she "should use the term in quotation marks", when referring to Manchuria.[14] Herbert Giles wrote that "Manchuria" was unknown to the Manchus themselves as a geographical expression.[15] In his 2012 dissertation on the Jurchen people to obtain a Doctor of Philosophy degree in History from the University of Washington, Professor Chad D. Garcia noted that usage of the term "Manchuria" is out of favor in "currently scholarly practice" and he did away with using the term, using instead "the northeast" or referring to specific geographical features.[16]

The Qing Dynasty, which replaced the Shun and Ming dynasties in China, was founded by Manchus from Manchuria (modern Northeastern China). The Manchu emperors separated their homeland in Jilin and Heilongjiang from the Han Liaoning province with the Willow Palisade. This ethnic division continued until the Qing dynasty encouraged massive immigration of Han in the 19th century during Chuang Guandong to prevent the Russians from seizing the area from the Qing. After conquering the Ming, the Qing identified their state as "China" (中國, Zhongguo; "Middle Kingdom") and referred to it as "Dulimbai Gurun" in Manchu.[17][18][19] The Qing equated the lands of the Qing state (including present day Manchuria, Xinjiang, Mongolia, Tibet and other areas) as "China" in both the Chinese and Manchu languages, defining China as a multi-ethnic state, rejecting the idea that China only meant Han areas, proclaiming that both Han and non-Han peoples were part of "China", using "China" to refer to the Qing in official documents, international treaties, and foreign affairs, and the "Chinese language" (Dulimbai gurun i bithe) referred to Chinese, Manchu, and Mongol languages, and the term "Chinese people" (中國人 Zhongguo ren; Manchu: Dulimbai gurun i niyalma) referred to all Han, Manchus, and Mongol subjects of the Qing. The lands in Manchuria were explicitly stated by the Qing to belong to "China" (Zhongguo, Dulimbai gurun) in Qing edicts and in the Treaty of Nerchinsk.[20]

During the Qing dynasty, the area of Manchuria was known as the "three eastern provinces" (三東省; Sān dōng shěng) since 1683 when Jilin and Heilongjiang were separated even though it was not until 1907 that they were turned into actual provinces.[21] The area of Manchuria was then converted into three provinces by the late Qing government in 1907. Since then, the "Three Northeast Provinces" (traditional Chinese: 東北三省; simplified Chinese: 东北三省; pinyin: Dōngběi Sānshěng) was officially used by the Qing government in China to refer to this region, and the post of Viceroy of Three Northeast Provinces was established to take charge of these provinces.

During its reign the Qing Dynasty became highly integrated with Chinese culture. The dynasty reached its height in the 18th century, during which both territory and population were increased. However, its military power weakened thereafter and, faced with massive rebellions and defeat in wars, the Qing Dynasty declined after the mid-19th century.

As the power of the court in Beijing weakened, many outlying areas either broke free (like Kashgar) or fell under the control of Imperialist powers. In the 19th century, Imperial Russia was most interested in the northern lands of the Qing Empire. In 1858, Russia gained control over a huge tract of land called Outer Manchuria thanks to the Supplementary Treaty of Beijing that ended the Second Opium War. But Russia was not satisfied and, as the Qing Dynasty continued to weaken, they made further efforts to take control of the rest of Manchuria. Inner Manchuria came under strong Russian influence in the 1890s with the building of the Chinese Eastern Railway through Harbin to Vladivostok.


As a direct result of the Russo-Japanese War (1904/05) Japanese influence replaced Russia's in Inner Manchuria. In 1906, Japan laid the South Manchurian Railway to Port Arthur (Japanese: Ryojun). Between World War I and World War II Manchuria became a political and military battleground between Russia, Japan, and China. Japan moved into Outer Manchuria as a result of the chaos following the Russian Revolution of 1917. A combination of Soviet military successes and American economic pressure forced the Japanese to withdraw from the area, however, and Outer Manchuria returned to Soviet control by 1925.

During the warlord period in China, the warlord Zhang Zuolin established himself in Inner Manchuria with Japanese backing. Later, the Japanese Kwantung Army found him too independent, so he was assassinated in 1928.

Japan-Manchukuo Protocol, 15 September 1932.
The throne of the emperor in Manchukuo, c. 1937.

After the Japanese invasion of Manchuria in 1931, Japanese militarists moved forward to separate the region from Chinese control and to create a Japanese-aligned puppet state. To create an air of legitimacy, the last Emperor of China, Puyi, was invited to come with his followers and act as the head of state for Manchuria. One of his faithful companions was Zheng Xiaoxu, a Qing reformist and loyalist.[22]

On 18 February 1932 the Manchu State (Manchukuo, volunteer armies to oppose the Japanese and the new state required a war lasting several years to appease the country.

The Japanese initially installed Puyi as Head of State in 1932, and two years later he was declared Emperor of Manchukuo with the era name of Kangde ("Tranquility and Virtue"; Wade-Giles: Kangte). Manchukuo thus became the Great Manchurian Empire, sometimes termed Manchutikuo (Pinyin: Mǎnzhōu Dìguó). Zheng Xiaoxu served as Manchukuo's first prime minister until 1935, when Zhang Jinghui succeeded him. Puyi was nothing more than a figurehead and real authority rested in the hands of the Japanese military officials. An imperial palace was particularly built for the emperor. All of the Manchu ministers served as front-men for their Japanese vice-ministers, who made all decisions.

In this manner, Japan formally detached Manchukuo from China in the course of the 1930s. With Japanese investment and rich natural resources, the area became an industrial powerhouse. Manchukuo had its own issued bank notes and postal stamps. Several independent banks were founded as well.

In 1935, Manchukuo bought the Chinese Eastern Railway from the Soviet Union.

Diplomatic recognition

Foreign recognition of Manchukuo

China did not recognize Manchukuo but the two sides established official ties for trade, communications and transportation. In 1933, the League of Nations adopted the Lytton Report, declaring that Manchuria remained rightfully part of China, leading Japan to resign its membership. The Manchukuo case persuaded the United States to articulate the so-called Stimson Doctrine, under which international recognition was withheld from changes in the international system created by force of arms.

In spite of the League of Nations' approach, the new state was diplomatically recognised by El Salvador (3 March 1934) and the Dominican Republic (1934), the Soviet Union (de facto 23 March 1935; de jure 13 April 1941),[24][25] Italy (29 November 1937), Spain (2 December 1937), Germany (12 May 1938) and Hungary (9 January 1939).

It is commonly believed that the Holy See established diplomatic relations with Manchukuo in 1934, but the Holy See never did so. This belief is partly due to the erroneous reference in Bernardo Bertolucci's 1987 film The Last Emperor that the Holy See diplomatically recognised Manchukuo. Bishop Auguste Ernest Pierre Gaspais was appointed as "representative ad tempus of the Holy See and of the Catholic missions of Manchukuo to the government of Manchukuo" by the Congregation De Propaganda Fide (a purely religious body responsible for missions) and not by the Secretariat of State responsible for diplomatic relations with states.[26]

After the outbreak of World War II, the state was recognised by Slovakia (1 June 1940), Vichy France (12 July 1940), Romania (1 December 1940), Bulgaria (10 May 1941), Finland (18 July 1941), Denmark (August 1941), Croatia (2 August 1941)—all controlled or influenced by Japan's ally Germany — as well as by the China's Wang Jingwei government (30 November 1940), Thailand (5 August 1941) and the Philippines (1943) — all under Japanese control.

Puyi as Emperor Kangde of Manchukuo

World War II and aftermath

Before World War II, the Japanese colonized Manchukuo and used it as a base from which to invade China. In the summer of 1939 a border dispute between Manchukuo and the Mongolian People's Republic resulted in the Battle of Khalkhin Gol. During this battle, a combined Soviet-Mongolian force defeated the Japanese Kwantung Army (Kantōgun) supported by limited Manchukuoan forces.

On 8 August 1945, the Soviet Union declared war on Japan, in accordance with the agreement at the Yalta Conference, and invaded Manchukuo from outer Manchuria and Outer Mongolia. This was called Manchurian Strategic Offensive Operation. During the Soviet offensive the Army of Manchukuo, on paper a 200,000-man force, performed poorly and whole units surrendered to the Soviets without firing a single shot; there were even cases of armed riots and mutinies against the Japanese forces. Emperor Kangde (known by reign title Xuantong during the Qing Dynasty; his childhood name was Puyi) had hoped to escape to Japan to surrender to the Americans, but the Soviets captured him and eventually extradited him to the communist government in China, where the authorities had him imprisoned as a war criminal along with all other captured Manchukuo officials.

From 1945 to 1948, Manchuria (Inner Manchuria) served as a base area for the People's Liberation Army in the Chinese Civil War against the National Revolutionary Army.[27] The Chinese Communists used Manchuria as a staging ground until the final Nationalist retreat to Taiwan in 1949. Many Manchukuo army and Japanese Kantogun personnel served with the communist troops during the Chinese Civil War against the Nationalist forces. Most of the 1.5 million Japanese who had been left in Manchukuo at the end of World War II were sent back to their homeland in 1946-1948 by U.S. Navy ships in the operation now known as the Japanese repatriation from Huludao.


Propaganda poster promoting harmony between Japanese, Chinese, and Manchu. The caption says (Right to left): "With the cooperation of Japan, China, and Manchukuo, the world can be in peace."

Historians generally consider Manchukuo a puppet state of Imperial Japan[28] because of the Japanese military's strong presence and strict control of the government administration. Chinese historians generally refer to the state as 'Wei Manzhouguo' ('false state of Manchuria'). Some historians see Manchukuo as an effort at building a glorified Japanese state in mainland Asia that deteriorated due to the pressures of war.[29]

The independence of Manchuria was proclaimed on 18 February 1932, and renamed to Manchukuo. The Japanese military commander appointed Puyi as regent (reign name Datong) for the time being, stating that he would become Emperor of Manchukuo but could not reign using the title of Emperor of the Great Qing Empire as he once held. Manchukuo was proclaimed a monarchy on 1 March 1934, with Puyi assuming the throne under the reign name of Emperor Kang-de. Puyi was assisted in his executive duties by a Privy Council (Chinese: 參議府), and a General Affairs State Council (Chinese: 國務院). This State Council was the center of political power, and consisted of several cabinet ministers, each assisted by a Japanese vice-minister.

The commanding officer of the Kwantung Army in Manchukuo was additionally the Japanese ambassador to Manchukuo. He functioned in a manner similar to that of a British resident officer in British overseas protectorates, with the power to veto decisions by the emperor. The Kwangtung Army leadership placed Japanese vice ministers in his cabinet, while all Chinese advisors gradually resigned or were dismissed.

The Legislative Council (Chinese: 立法院) was largely a ceremonial body, existing to rubber-stamp decisions issued by the State Council. The only authorized political party was the government-sponsored Concordia Association, although various émigré groups were permitted their own political associations.

When the Japanese surrender was announced on 15 August 1945, Puyi was "asked" to abdicate, which he did.

Head of State

Emperor of Manchukuo
Former Monarchy
Imperial Seal
First monarch Kāngdé
Last monarch Kāngdé
Style His Imperial Majesty
Monarchy began 1 March 1934
Monarchy ended 15 August 1945
Current pretender(s) Jin Youzhi
Manchukuo 1932–1945
Personal Names Period of Reigns Era names (年號) and their corresponding range of years
All given names in bold.
Aisin-Gioro Puyi 愛新覺羅溥儀 Àixīnjuéluó Pǔyì March 1932 – August 1945 Datong (大同 Dàtóng) 1932–1934
Kangde (康德 Kāngdé) 1934–1945

Prime Minister

Name Portrait Born-Died Term start Term end Political Party
Zheng Xiaoxu 1860-1938 9 March 1932 May 1935 Concordia Association
Zhang Jinghui 1871-1959 May 1935 August 1945 Concordia Association

Administrative divisions

See List of administrative divisions of Manchukuo for a complete list of prefecture-level divisions.

During its short-lived existence, Manchukuo was divided into between five (in 1932) and 19 (in 1941) provinces, one special ward of Peiman (Chinese: 北滿特別區) and two Special cities which were Hsinking (Chinese: 新京特別市) and Harbin (Chinese: 哈爾濱特別市). Each province was divided into between four (Hsingan-tung) and 24 (Fengtien) prefectures. Peiman lasted less than 3 years (1 July 1933 – 1 January 1936) and Harbin was later incorporated into Binkiang province. Lungkiang also existed as a province in the 1932 before being divided into Heiho, Lungkiang and Sankiang in 1934. Antung and Chinchow provinces separated themselves from Fengtien while Binkiang and Chientao from Kirin separated themselves in the same year.


Map of Manchukuo

In 1908, the number of residents was 15,834,000, which rose to 30,000,000 in 1931 and 43,000,000 for the Manchukuo state. The population balance remained 123 men to 100 women and the total number in 1941 was 50,000,000. Other statistics indicate that in Manchukuo the population rose by 18,000,000.

In early 1934, the total population of Manchukuo was estimated as 30,880,000, with 6.1 persons the average family, and 122 men for each 100 women. These numbers included 29,510,000 Chinese (96%, which should have included the Manchurian population), 590,760 Japanese (2%), 680,000 Koreans (2%), and 98,431 (<1%) of other nationality: White Russians, Mongols, etc. Around 80% of the population was rural. During the existence of Manchukuo, the ethnic balance did not change significantly, except that Japan increased the Korean population in China. The majority of Han Chinese in Manchukuo believed that Manchuria was rightfully part of China, who both passively and violently resisted Japan's propaganda that Manchukuo was a "multinational state".[30]

From Japanese sources come these numbers: in 1940 the total population in Manchukuo of Lungkiang, Jehol, Kirin, Liaoning (Fengtien) and Hsingan provinces at 43,233,954; or an Interior Ministry figure of 31,008,600. Another figure of the period estimated the total population as 36,933,000 residents.

Around the same time the Soviet Union was advocating the Siberian Jewish Autonomous Oblast across the Manchukuo-Soviet border, some Japanese officials investigated a plan (known as the Fugu Plan) to attract Jewish refugees to Manchukuo as part of their colonisation efforts which was never adopted as official policy.

Population of main cities

  • Newchwang (119,000 or 180,871 in 1940)
  • Mukden (339,000 or 1,135,801 in 1940)
  • Hsinking (126,000 or 544,202 in 1940)
  • Harbin (405,000 or 661,948 in 1940)
  • Dairen (400,000 or 555,562 in 1939)
  • Antung (92,000 or 315,242 in 1940)
  • Kirin (119,000 or 173,624 in 1940)
  • Tsitsihar (75,000 in 1940)

Japanese population

In 1931–2, there were 100,000 Japanese farmers; other sources mention 590,760 Japanese inhabitants. Other figures for Manchukuo speak of a Japanese population 240,000 strong, later growing to 837,000. In Hsinking, they made up 25% of the population. The Japanese government had official plans projecting the emigration of 5 million Japanese to Manchukuo between 1936 and 1956. Between 1938 and 1942 a batch of young farmers of 200,000 arrived in Manchukuo; joining this group after 1936 were 20,000 complete families. When Japan lost sea and air control of the Yellow Sea, this migration stopped.

When the Red Army invaded Manchukuo, they captured 850,000 Japanese settlers. With the exception of some civil servants and soldiers, these were repatriated to Japan in 1946–7. Many Japanese orphans in China were left behind in the confusion by the Japanese government and were adopted by Chinese families. Many, however, integrated well into Chinese society. In the 1980s Japan began to organise a repatriation programme for them but not all chose to go back to Japan.


Shōwa Steel Works in early 1940s

Manchukuo experienced rapid economic growth and progress in its social systems. Its industrial system was among the most advanced making it one of the industrial powerhouses in the region.[31] Manchukuo's steel production exceeded Japan's in the late 1930s. Many Manchurian cities were modernised during Manchukuo era. However, much of the country's economy was often subordinated to Japanese interests and, during the war, raw material flowed into Japan to support the war effort. Traditional lands were taken and redistributed to Japanese farmers with local farmers relocated and forced into collective farming units over smaller areas of land.

See also:

Hsinking Railway Station


The Japanese built an efficient and impressive railway system that still functions well today. Known as the South Manchuria Railway Company or Mantetsu, this large corporation came to own large stakes in many industrial projects throughout the region. Mantetsu personnel were active in the pacification of occupied China during World War II.


Manchukuo Imperial Army

The Manchukuo Imperial Army was the armed force of Manchukuo.

Cavalry of the Manchukuo Imperial Army.

Manchukuo Imperial Guards

The Manchukuo Imperial Guards was the elite unit of the Manchukuo armed forces created in 1933. It was charged with the protection of the Kangde Emperor Puyi, and senior members of the Manchukuo civil government. Its headquarters was in the capital of Hsinking, near the Imperial Palace in the centre of the city.

Manchukuo Imperial Navy

The Manchukuo Imperial Navy (Manshu Teikoku Kaigun) was the navy of Manchukuo. As Manchukuo was a largely land-locked state, the leadership of the Japanese Kwantung Army regarded the development of a navy to have a very low military priority, although it was politically desirable to create at least a nominal force as a symbol of the legitimacy of the new regime.

Manchukuo Imperial Air Force

The Manchukuo Imperial Air Force (Dai Manshū Teikoku Kūgun) was established in February 1937, initially with 30 men selected from the Manchukuo Imperial Army and trained at the Japanese Kwantung Army aircraft arsenal in Harbin. The official air force's predecessor was the Manchukuo Air Transport Company (later renamed the Manchukuo National Airways) a paramilitary airline formed in 1931, which undertook transport and reconnaissance missions for the Japanese military.

War crimes in Manchukuo

According to a joint study by historians Zhifen Ju, Mitsuyochi Himeta, Toru Kubo and Mark Peattie, more than 10 million Chinese civilians were mobilized by the Kwangtung Army for slave labor in Manchukuo under the supervision of the Kōa-in.[32]

The Chinese slave laborers often suffered illness due to high-intensity manual labor. Some badly ill workers were directly pushed into mass graves in order to avoid the medical expenditure[33] and the world's most serious mine disaster, at Benxihu Colliery, happened in Manchukuo.

Bacteriological weapons were experimented on humans by the infamous unit 731 located near Harbin in Beinyinhe from 1932 to 1936 and to Pingfan until 1945. Victims, mostly Chinese, Russians and Koreans, were subjected to vivisection, sometimes without anesthesia.

Drug trafficking

Poppy harvest in Manchukuo

In 2007, an article by Reiji Yoshida in the Nanjing and Mongolia.[34] This document corroborates evidence analyzed earlier by the Tokyo tribunal which stated that

Japan's real purpose in engaging in drug traffic was far more sinister than even the debauchery of Chinese people. Japan, having signed and ratified the opium conventions, was bound not to engage in drug traffic, but she found in the alleged but false independence of Manchukuo a convenient opportunity to carry on a worldwide drug traffic and cast the guilt upon that puppet state.... In 1937, it was pointed out in the League of Nations that 90% of all illicit white drugs in the world were of Japanese origin...[35]


Manchukuo developed an efficient public education system. The government established many schools and technical colleges, 12,000 primary schools in Manchukuo, 200 middle schools, 140 normal schools (for preparing teachers), and 50 technical and professional schools. In total the system had 600,000 children and young pupils and 25,000 teachers. Local Chinese children and Japanese children usually attended different schools, and the ones who did attend the same school were segregated by ethnicity, with the Japanese students assigned to better-equipped classes.

Confucius's teachings also played an important role in Manchukuo's public school education. In rural areas, students were trained to practice modern agricultural techniques to improve production. Education focused on practical work training for boys and domestic work for girls, all based on obedience to the "Kingly Way" and stressing loyalty to the Emperor. The regime used numerous festivals, sport events, and ceremonies to foster loyalty of citizens.[36] Eventually, Japanese became the official language in addition to the Chinese language taught in Manchukuo schools.



The Photograpic Division, part of the public relations section of the South Manchurian Railway was created in 1928 to produce short documentary films about Manchuria to Japanese audiences. In 1937, the Manchukuo Film Association was established by the government and the South Manchurian Railway in a studio in Jilin province. It was founded by Masahiko Amakasu, who also helped the career of Yoshiko Otaka, also known as Ri Koran. He also tried to ensure that Manchukuo would have its own industry and would be catering mainly to Manchurian audiences. The films for the most part usually promote pro-Manchukuo and pro-Japanese views. After World War II, the archives and the equipment of the association were used by the Changchun Film Studio of the People's Republic of China.


The Changshan and the Qipao, both derived from traditional Manchu dress, were considered national dresses in Manchukuo.

In a meeting with the Zhongshan suit. A pin of either a Manchukuo flag or a five-pointed, five colored star with the Manchukuo national colors were worn on the collars.[37] Court dress resembled those of Meiji-era Japan at that time.


The Manchukuo National Physical Education Association was established in 1932 to promote sport.

Manchukuo also had a national football team, and football was considered the country's de facto national sport; the Football Association of Manchukuo was formed around it.[38]

Manchukuo hosted and participated in baseball matches with Japanese teams. Some of the games of the Intercity Baseball Tournament were held in the country, and played with local teams.

Manchukuo originally was to join the 1932 Summer Olympic Games, but one of the athletes who were intended to represent Manchukuo, Liu Changchun, refused to join the team and instead joined as the first Chinese representative in the Olympics. There were attempts by Japanese authorities to let Manchukuo join the 1936 games, but the Olympic Committee persisted in the policy of not allowing an unrecognized state to join the Olympics. Manchukuo had a chance to participate in the planned 1940 Tokyo Olympics, but the outset of World War II killed the idea permanently.

National symbols

Aside from the national flag, the orchid, reportedly Puyi's favorite flower, became the royal flower of the country, similar to the chrysanthemum in Japan.[39] The

  • Manchukuo Propaganda Posters & Bills
  • Manchukuo Imperial Army
  • Manchu Money Museum
  • Education in Mongolia and Manchukuo
  • Manchukuo Flags
  • "On Macro-economic Statistics for Manchukuo" by Yuzo Yamamoto
  • "Toshiro Matsumoto s research over Manchukuo"
  • "Vaticano-Manchukuo no sirve de mea culpa" by Gianni Valente
  • "Manchukuo National Anthem"
  • "References over Manchukuo"
  • Zionism and the Japanese East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere
  • Japanese references to Mantetsu Railway Company
  • Mukden Incident photos
    • World War II database (1)
    • World War II database (2)

External links

  • KISHI Toshihiko, MATSUSHIGE Mitsuhiro and MATSUMURA Fuminori eds, 20 Seiki Manshu Rekishi Jiten [Encyclopedia of 20th Century Manchuria History], Tokyo: Yoshikawa Kobunkan, 2012, ISBN 978-4642014694
  • Toshihiko Kishi. "Manchuria's Visual Media Empire (Manshukoku no Visual Media): Posters, Pictorial Post Cards, Postal Stamps", Tokyo: Yoshikawa Kobunkan, 10 June 2010. ISBN 978-4-642-08036-1
  • Reginald Fleming Johnston. "Twilight in the Forbidden City". Soul Care Publishing, 18 March 2008. ISBN 978-0-9680459-5-4.

Other sources

  • Clauss, Errol MacGregor. "The Roosevelt Administration and Manchukuo, 1933-1941," Historian (1970), 32#4 pp 595–611.
  • Duara, Prasenjit. Sovereignty and Authenticity: Manchukuo and the East Asian Modern (2004)
  • Power, Brian. Puppet Emperor: The Life of Pu Yi, Last Emperor of China (1988), 240pp
  • Yamamuro, Shin'ichi. Manchuria under Japanese Dominion (U. of Pennsylvania Press, 2006); 335 pages; translation of highly infleuntial Japanese study; excerpt and text search
    • review in The Journal of Japanese Studies 34.1 (2007) 109-114 online
  • Young, Louise. Japan's Total Empire: Manchuria and the Culture of Wartime Imperialism (1999) 500pp; excerpt and text search; Google books
  • Mitter, Rana. The Manchurian Myth: Nationalism, Resistance, and Collaboration in Modern China (2000) 295pp.

Further reading

  • Clausen, Søren (1995). The Making of a Chinese City: History and Historiography in Harbin. Contributor Stig Thøgersen (illustrated ed.). M.E. Sharpe.  
  • Dvořák, Rudolf (1895). Chinas religionen .... Volume 12; Volume 15 of Darstellungen aus dem Gebiete der nichtchristlichen Religionsgeschichte (illustrated ed.). Aschendorff (Druck und Verlag der Aschendorffschen Buchhandlung).  
  • Elliott, Mark C. (Aug 2000). "The Limits of Tartary: Manchuria in Imperial and National Geographies". The Journal of Asian Studies (Association for Asian Studies) 59 (No. 3): 603–646.  
  • Garcia, Chad D. (2012). Horsemen from the Edge of Empire: The Rise of the Jurchen Coalition (A dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy). University of Washington. pp. 1–315. Retrieved 6 September 2014. 
  • Giles, Herbert A. (1912). China and the Manchus. (Cambridge : at the University Press) (New York : G. P. Putnam's Sons). Retrieved 31 January 2014. 
  • Hauer, Erich (2007). Corff, Oliver, ed. Handwörterbuch der Mandschusprache. Volume 12; Volume 15 of Darstellungen aus dem Gebiete der nichtchristlichen Religionsgeschichte (illustrated ed.). Otto Harrassowitz Verlag.  
  • McCormack, Gavan (1977). Chang Tso-lin in Northeast China, 1911-1928: China, Japan, and the Manchurian Idea (illustrated ed.). Stanford University Press.  
  • Pʻan, Chao-ying (1938). American Diplomacy Concerning Manchuria. The Catholic University of America. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  • Pozzi, Alessandra; Janhunen, Juha Antero; Weiers, Michael, eds. (2006). Tumen Jalafun Jecen Aku: Manchu Studies in Honour of Giovanni Stary. Volume 20 of Tunguso Sibirica. Contributor Giovanni Stary. Otto Harrassowitz Verlag.  
  • Sewell, Bill (2003). Edgington, David W., ed. Japan at the Millennium: Joining Past and Future (illustrated ed.). UBC Press.  
  • Smith, Norman (2012). Intoxicating Manchuria: Alcohol, Opium, and Culture in China's Northeast. Contemporary Chinese Studies Series (illustrated ed.). UBC Press.  
  • Tamanoi, Mariko Asano (May 2000). """Knowledge, Power, and Racial Classification: The "Japanese" in "Manchuria. The Journal of Asian Studies (Association for Asian Studies) 59 (No. 2): 248–276.  
  • Wolff, David; Steinberg, John W., eds. (2007). The Russo-Japanese War in Global Perspective: World War Zero, Volume 2. Volume 2 of The Russo-Japanese War in Global Perspective (illustrated ed.). BRILL.  
  • Wu, Shuhui (1995). Die Eroberung von Qinghai unter Berücksichtigung von Tibet und Khams 1717 - 1727: anhand der Throneingaben des Grossfeldherrn Nian Gengyao. Volume 2 of Tunguso Sibirica (reprint ed.). Otto Harrassowitz Verlag.  
  • Zhao, Gang (January 2006). "Reinventing China Imperial Qing Ideology and the Rise of Modern Chinese National Identity in the Early Twentieth Century" 32 (Number 1). Sage Publications.  
  2. ^ Encyclopædia Britannica article on Manchukuo
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ Note - Although the territories came under the jurisdiction of the Nationalist government before the Chinese Civil War came to its conclusion in 1949, the brief Soviet occupation helped transform the region into a power base for the Chinese Communist troops led by Mao Zedong where the People's Liberation Army could resupply itself with Japanese equipment and gain strategic advantage against the Nationalist government headed by Chiang Kai-shek.
  5. ^ [2]Pozzi 2006, p. 159.
  6. ^ [3]Pozzi 2006, p. 167.
  7. ^ Elliot 2000, p. 626.
  8. ^ Elliot 2000, p. 628.
  9. ^ ed. Wolff & Steinberg 2007, p. 514.
  10. ^ ed. Edgington 2003, p. 114.
  11. ^ McCormack 1977, p. 4.
  12. ^ Pʻan 1938, p. 8.
  13. ^ Smith 2012, p. 219.
  14. ^ Tamanoi 2000, p. 249.
  15. ^ [4]Giles 1912, p. 8.
  16. ^ Garcia 2012, p. 15.
  17. ^ Hauer 2007, p. 117.
  18. ^ Dvořák 1895, p. 80.
  19. ^ Wu 1995, p. 102.
  20. ^ Zhao 2006, pp. 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14.
  21. ^ Clausen 1995, p. 7.
  22. ^ Reginald Fleming Johnston, p. 438.
  23. ^ Between World Wars
  24. ^ Nish, Ian Hill (2002), Japanese foreign policy in the interwar period, Westport, CT: Praeger, p. 95,  .
  25. ^ Lu, David John (2002), Agony of choice: Matsuoka Yōsuke and the rise and fall of the Japanese Empire, 1880-1946, Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, p. 83,  .
  26. ^ Valente, Gianni. "Vatican-Manchukuo, mea culpas are not necessary". 30giorni. Archived from the original on 25 February 2013. Retrieved February 25, 2013. 
  27. ^ Borisov, O. (1977). The Soviet Union and the Manchurian Revolutionary Base (1945-1949). Moscow, Progress Publishers.
  28. ^ Columbia Encyclopedia article on Manchukuo
  29. ^ Doak, Kevin Michael (2004), by Prasenjit Duara"Sovereignty and Authenticity: Manchukuo and the East Asian Modern"Review: , The Journal of Japanese Studies 30 (2): 502–507,  .
  30. ^ Westad, Odd Arne (2012). Restless Empire: China and the World Since 1750. Basic Bokos. p. 252. 
  31. ^ Prasenjit Duara. "The New Imperialism and the Post-Colonial Developmental State: Manchukuo in comparative perspective". Retrieved 25 July 2010. 
  32. ^ Ju, Zhifen (2002), Japan's atrocities of conscripting and abusing north China draftees after the outbreak of the Pacific war .
  33. ^ Municipal Government Information Office (2005), Repatriation of one million Japanese via Huludao, Beijing: China Intercontinental Press, p. 25,  .
  34. ^ Japan profited as opium dealer wartime China,
  35. ^ Chapter 5: HyperWar: International Military Tribunal for the Far East 
  36. ^ Japan Focus.
  37. ^ Brandt, Kim. Kingdom of Beauty: Mingei and the Politics of Folk Art in Imperial Japan. Durham and London: Duke UP, 2007.
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^ 千田萬三『満洲事典』満鉄社員会、1939年(昭和14年)


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See also

The 2008 South Korean western The Good, the Bad, the Weird is set in the desert wilderness of 1930s Manchuria.

Haruki Murakami's 1995 novel The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle deals greatly with Manchukuo through the character of Lieutenant Mamiya. Mamiya recalls, in person and in correspondence, his time as an officer in the Kwantung Army in Manchukuo. While the period covered in these recollections extends over many years, the focus is on the final year of the war and the Soviet invasion of Manchuria.

Bernardo Bertolucci's 1987 film, The Last Emperor, presented a controversial portrait of Manchukuo through the memories of Emperor Puyi, during his days as a political prisoner in the People's Republic of China.

In Masaki Kobayashi's The Human Condition (film series) (1959) Kaji, the main protagonist, is a labor supervisor assigned to a workforce consisting of Chinese prisoners in a large mining operation in Japanese-colonized Manchuria.

In popular culture

Manchukuo issued postage stamps from 28 July 1932 until its dissolution following the final defeat of the Japanese Empire in August 1945. The last issue of Manchukuo was on 2 May 1945.

Stamps and postal history

" was used as a national motto. Five Races Under One Union (Manchukuo) "[40]

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