I have seen many documentaries and ready numerous mainstream media pieces about imperial japan.
They reference a constitutional monarchy where the militarist faction has taken control of the legislature, the emperor Hirohito stands by, and the generals and admiral begin pursuing foreign wars in China, etc.
But I have NEVER, not even in “life in Japan during WWII” vids, seen any documentary or read any mainstream article about the fascist phase
In fact I often hear if referenced that “Japan was never fascist only militarist” and that the county’s wartime leader was Hirohito.
This is just wrong. The only real difference between Tojo’s fascist state and Mussolini’s Fascist state (capital F) was that in Italy, the cult of personality surrounded Mussolini, while in Japan, the cult surrounded Hirohito.
If King Victor Emmanuel had a cult surrounding himself when Mussolini came to power, you can bet your was he would have promoted Victor Emmanuel’s cult over his own. But this changes nothing about the actual state structures or operations of the state
By 1942, the second year of the fascist regime, I challenge you to find significant difference in the state structures of Japan and those of Germany or Italy.
But the bigger question is, why??
Why is there almost no material on Japan’s transformation from a parliamentary system at war in 1940, to the personification of a warlike state, a one party state with no legal opposition and significant gleizaltung, just one year later?
The reason I want to know more about this period and think there should be plenty of documentaries on it, is because this was a rare case where that transition happened – not following a civil war or preceding an international war – but during an international war that was quickly becoming a world war.
And also whether Tojo could have even ordered the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1940, before he became the leader and later the supreme dictator (but not “The Leader” – as mentioned earlier the cult stayed with Hirohito since it was already established) of the country. By the time of the attack, Tojo had seized full control of society and had established a totalitarian government
Source: reddit post