Battle Scenes: “Our army attacks from sky, water and shore, and repulsed enemy of Siberia”. The Japanese propaganda version of The Siberian Intervention of 1918.

Japanese soldiers in Siberia, c. 1918-1920.
Japanese officers in Vladivostok with local commander
Lieutenant-General Rozanov, (1920).
“Japanese big guns in Siberia”,
from Fighting America’s Fight. 1918.
“Japanese artillery officers in Siberia”, from Fighting America’s Fight. 1918.
Japanese troops in Siberia, 1919.

The Siberian Intervention (1918-22) was the dispatch of troops of the Entente powers to the Russian Maritime Provinces as part of a larger effort by the western powers and Japan to support White Russian forces against the Bolshevik Red Army during the Russian Civil War. In July 1918, President Wilson asked the Japanese government to supply 7,000 troops as part of an international coalition. Prime Minister Masatake agreed to send 12,000 troops, but under the command of Japan, rather than as part of an international coalition.

The Japanese Army planned to attack on two fronts, from Vladivostok to Khabarovsk along the Amur River and via the Chinese Eastern Railway to cut off the Russian Trans-Siberian Railway at Lake Baikal. By November 1918, more than 70,000 Japanese troops had occupied all ports and major towns in the Russian Maritime Provinces and eastern Siberia.

The Imperial Japanese Army continued to occupy Siberia long after other Allied forces had withdrawn in 1920. Japanese casualties from the Siberian Expedition included some 5,000 dead from combat, frostbite or illness, and the expenses incurred were in excess of ¥900 million.

An edition of 17 wonderfully captioned propaganda lithographs describing (Japan’s version of) the Siberian Intervention, created & published by Shobido & Company of Japan, circa 1919:

No. 1. The landing of the Japanese army. Welcomed by every nation at Vladivostok.
No. 2. The march of the Japanese army at Vladivostok city.
No. 3. Captain Konomi died in the battle, fighting.
No. 4. The Japanese army defeated the German-Austrian Army near Usri (i.e. Ussuri), Siberia.
No. 5. The first battle near Manturia (i.e. Manchuria). The Japanese soldiers defeated the enemy’s cavalry.
No. 6. The brilliant exploit of the Noshido Infantry Company destroyed rail road, going around the back of the ememy.
No. 7. The Japanese cavalry taken possession of Khobarovsk pursueing (sic) and attacking the enemies.
No. 8. The Japanese cavalry advanced furiously in storm.
No. 9. The Japanese army occupied Habalofsk (i.e.Khabarovsk). Amur Fleet surrendered.
No. 10. Furious fighting at Amur.
No. 11. Starting of the head-quarters of the combined army in Siberia.
No. 13. The battle of Usri (i.e. Ussuri), Siberia. Captain Konomi died in the battle, fighting.
No. 14. Our cavalry’s occupied Khabarovsk, and march past took place in front of the enemy’s gun-boats.


No. 15. Fighting between the cavalry and the war ships. The letter (latter) surrendered.
No. 16. The Japanese Army occupied Vragaeschensk.
No. 17. Our army attacks from sky, water and shore, and repulsed enemy of Siberia.

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