By Stewart Lone (auth.)
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Extra info for Army, Empire and Politics in Meiji Japan: The Three Careers of General Katsura Tarō
9 Indeed, the regulation was only to be modified in 1921 by the then prime minister, Hara Kei. Katsura was chosen to be the first 'peacetime' governor-general of Taiwan. Part of the reason for this choice was the need for a soldier sensitive to local interests and to the international community. Katsura's persuasiveness was well known and his skill in handling foreign opinion had been evident during the Sino-japanese war. The question was whether he would physically be able to accept. In 1895, shortly after returning from the front, he had collapsed with acute stomach pains.
We should hold matters in the north and push south, reaching out from the japan Sea to the China Sea and all parts of its coast. The idea of 'holding in the north, pushing south' was later to be upheld by Katsura as army minister in the Yamagata cabinet. Already, it would seem, Katsura had shifted from Yamagata's insistence on a 'strong army' at any price, and was inclining more to a balance of economic and military strength. Katsura was, however, always ready to advocate force for practical ends.
Well aware their forces were seen as representatives of Japanese culture, army commanders issued strict warnings on discipline. In Manchuria, Katsura told his men: Scattered ahead of us are foreigners, especially missionaries. A cross marks their dwellings. If they are not fully protected, it will cause diplomatic trouble and dishonour the Japanese army before the world. You must protect foreigners and their homes and show the gulf between civilised troops and those of the enemy. 10 While occupying the town of Haicheng, Katsura posted men to safeguard the local Christian church; he also made contact with regional missionaries to assure them of his protection.
Army, Empire and Politics in Meiji Japan: The Three Careers of General Katsura Tarō by Stewart Lone (auth.)