A sculpture resembling Marquis Komura Jutarō.
Marquis Komura Jutarō, GCB, GCMG, GCVO (小村 壽太郎?, September 16, 1855 – November 25, 1911) was a statesman and diplomat in Meiji period Japan.
The Russo-Japanese War (8 February 1904 – 5 September 1905) was fought between the Russian Empire and the Empire of Japan over rival imperial ambitions in Manchuria and Korea. The major theatres of operations were the Liaodong Peninsula and Mukden in Southern Manchuria, and the seas around Korea, Japan, and the Yellow Sea.
Russia sought a warm-water port on the Pacific Ocean for their navy and for maritime trade. Vladivostok was operational only during the summer, whereas Port Arthur, a naval base in Liaodong Province leased to Russia by China, was operational all year. Since the end of the First Sino-Japanese War in 1895, negotiations between Russia and Japan had proved impractical.[clarification needed] Russia had demonstrated an expansionist policy in the Siberian far-east from the reign of Ivan the Terrible in the 16th century. Through threat of Russian expansion, Japan offered to recognize Russian dominance in Manchuria in exchange for recognition of Korea as within the Japanese sphere of influence. Russia refused and demanded Korea north of the 39th parallel to be a neutral buffer zone between Russia and Japan. The Japanese government perceived a Russian threat to its strategic interests and chose to go to war. After negotiations broke down in 1904, the Japanese Navy opened hostilities by attacking the Russian Eastern Fleet at Port Arthur in a surprise attack.
Russia suffered numerous defeats to Japan, but Tsar Nicholas II was convinced that Russia would win and chose to remain engaged in the war; at first, to await the outcomes of certain naval battles, and later to preserve the dignity of Russia by averting a "humiliating peace". The war concluded with the Treaty of Portsmouth, mediated by US President Theodore Roosevelt. The complete victory of the Japanese military surprised world observers. The consequences transformed the balance of power in East Asia, resulting in a reassessment of Japan's recent entry onto the world stage. Scholars continue to debate the historical significance of the war.
omura was born to a lower-ranking samurai family in the service of the Obi Domain in Kyushu’s Hyuga province (present-day Nichinan, Miyazaki prefecture). He attended the Daigaku Nankō (the predecessor of Tokyo Imperial University). In 1875, he was selected by the Ministry of Education as one of the first students to study abroad under a government scholarship. While at Harvard University, Komura shared lodgings with fellow Japanese student Kaneko Kentarō. In due course, Komura graduated from Harvard Law School in 1878.
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