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Emperor Hirohito and the Pacific War


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This is a strong book. It sets out in careful detail the maneuvering in and about the emperor on the key issues of the war, and it comes to considered judgments. -- Richard Minear, University of Massachusetts Amherst Kawamura offers a novel perspective on the role of Emperor Hirohito in the Pacific War and in the years which preceded it. Based on new and reappraised sources, she draws a human portrait of him, different from the caricatures that have been presented until now. -- Ben-Ami Shillony, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction1. The Aftermath of the Paris Peace Conference, 1919-1933 2. Crises at Home and Abroad: From the February 26 Incident to the Sino-Japanese War 3. The Road to Pearl Harbor4. An Uneasy Commander in Chief5. Imbroglio: Moves to End the War6. The "Sacred Decision" to Surrender Epilogue Notes Bibliography Index

About the Author

Noriko Kawamura is associate professor of history at Washington State University. She is the author of Turbulence in the Pacific: Japanese-U.S. Relations during World War I.


This is an eye-opening book. . . . Kawamura's research reveals the real Hirohito.

-- Geoffrey Wawro * History Book Club *

A well-balanced analysis of the controversial role Emperor Hirohito played during the Pacific War, drawing on previously unavailable primary sources. . . . Kawamura does a fine job of describing Emperor Hirohito's complex positions and his historical situation.

-- Takeshi Suzuki * Pacific Affairs *

Noriko Kawamura's Emperor Hirohito and the Pacific War provides a convincing reappraisal of Japan's Hirohito few Westerners would recognize whenever they are reminded of Pearl Harbor and the Pacific conflict.

-- Norm Haskett * The Daily Chronicles of World War II *

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