Why didn't China become Japan's Soviet Union?

The USSR and China were both massive countries in size and population with a mostly peasant population. However Russia put up a much harder fight against Germany than China did for Japan. Why the big difference and could China have learned anything from the USSR prior to Japan's invasion?
 
Well, for starters, the USSR was politically united while China wasn't at the time. The reason Japan was even able to take a foothold in China in the first place was due to said disunity.
 
The USSR and China were both massive countries in size and population with a mostly peasant population. However Russia put up a much harder fight against Germany than China did for Japan. Why the big difference and could China have learned anything from the USSR prior to Japan's invasion?
It kinda did. Sure Japan conquered a vast section of the country, but they were never able to force defeat on China after the 1937 war broke out. Japan poured endless amounts of money, materiel, and men into China, hell they went to war with the West to avoid withdrawing from China, and they never really seemed to make progress in actually winning the war after the initial major gains.
 

raharris1973

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China have learned anything from the USSR prior to Japan's invasion?
Japan's invasion of China happened before Germany's invasion of the USSR, so not really.

Unity and industry accounts for the difference- Essentially also, by October 1938 the Japanese had won the equivalent in China of what the Nazis would have gotten winning the Archangel -Astrakhan line or Urals line. And they held it until the end of the war.
 
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Slan

Banned
The gap was bigger. Japan was weaker than Nazi Germany, but the USSR was MUCH stronger than China, who wasn't a great power like the three.

And even if the Chinese had completely defeated and driven the Japanese out of China they would still not be able to invade Japan the same way the Russians invaded Germany, cuz Japan was one of the strongest naval powers of the world, much more stronger than Nazi Germany and the USSR in this regard.

The only country who could fuck up Japan the same way the Russians did to the Germans was the US.
 
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The soviet union was the world second industrial power after the USA, while China was probably comparable to italy or Brazil, and so while the USSR could overproduce germany on war machinery, China could not
 
The gap was bigger. Japan was weaker than Nazi Germany, but the USSR was MUCH stronger than China, who wasn't a great power like the three.

And even if the Chinese had completely defeated and driven the Japanese out of China they would still not be able to invade Japan the same way the Russians invaded Germany, cuz Japan was one of the strongest naval powers of the world, much more stronger than Nazi Germany and the USSR in this regard.

The only country who could fuck up Japan the same way the Russians did to the Germans was the US.
China could also probably drive Japan out of Korea in such a situation, maybe launch nuisance air strikes against Formosa and the Home Islands. But a complete collapse of the Japanese Empire on the mainland significantly alters the balance of power in the region, even more so if China insists on bringing Japan to heel once and for all, necessitating a naval buildup.

The strategic calculus in the USA is likely to change, moving away from propping up China as a counterweight to Japan, but propping up Japan as a counterweight to China.
 
China IS japan Soviet Union. The Kuomintang tie down millions of Japanese soldiers and equipment with barely any military aid at all. This with most of their industries destroyed and a country that still have warlords running around and a barely centralised government. The difference with China and USSR is ussr have a massive industrial complex while China has barely even complete their first five year industrial plan before japan decided to invade China.
if China has about 10-20 years of consolidation japan won’t stand a chance in hell
 

RousseauX

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The USSR and China were both massive countries in size and population with a mostly peasant population. However Russia put up a much harder fight against Germany than China did for Japan. Why the big difference and could China have learned anything from the USSR prior to Japan's invasion?
some combination of lack of industry but mostly political disunity in china itself
 
China IS japan Soviet Union. The Kuomintang tie down millions of Japanese soldiers and equipment with barely any military aid at all. This with most of their industries destroyed and a country that still have warlords running around and a barely centralised government. The difference with China and USSR is ussr have a massive industrial complex while China has barely even complete their first five year industrial plan before japan decided to invade China.
if China has about 10-20 years of consolidation japan won’t stand a chance in hell
On the mainland, that is. Formosa and the Home Islands are effectively invulnerable behind the IJN. China would need to build a gigantic navy to smash the IJN and bring Japan to heel once and for all. But doing so is likely to alarm the Americans, as they'll realize that if Japan falls, there's no one left in the region keeping China from asserting itself as the hegemon of Asia. Worse, unlike Japan, China would have the manpower, resources, and industry to match the USA as an equal.

There's only enough room at the head of the table for a single nation to dominate the Asia-Pacific, and as far as the USA is concerned it should be them, even if it means propping up a former rival. A Chinese naval buildup will almost certainly see American-Japanese rapprochement, along with cooling Sino-American relations.
 
The gap was bigger. Japan was weaker than Nazi Germany, but the USSR was MUCH stronger than China, who wasn't a great power like the three.

And even if the Chinese had completely defeated and driven the Japanese out of China they would still not be able to invade Japan the same way the Russians invaded Germany, cuz Japan was one of the strongest naval powers of the world, much more stronger than Nazi Germany and the USSR in this regard.

The only country who could fuck up Japan the same way the Russians did to the Germans was the US.
I mean, given that it's Meji-Japan, it's not unheard of for the Japanese navy to literally attack the army and visa versa, meaning that theoretically the Chinese could just let the Japanese sort themselves out.
 

Slan

Banned
China could also probably drive Japan out of Korea in such a situation, maybe launch nuisance air strikes against Formosa and the Home Islands. But a complete collapse of the Japanese Empire on the mainland significantly alters the balance of power in the region, even more so if China insists on bringing Japan to heel once and for all, necessitating a naval buildup.

The strategic calculus in the USA is likely to change, moving away from propping up China as a counterweight to Japan, but propping up Japan as a counterweight to China.
But they would never march on Tokyo.
 
But they would never march on Tokyo.
They might if that's the only way to get Formosa back. Pardon the slight inclusion of modern politics, but as a reference, the PROC's willingness to risk (nuclear) war with the USA over Taiwan means that it's not exactly out there that the KMT would similarly risk total war with Japan (and thus upend the balance of power in the Asia-Pacific) just to get Formosa back.
 

Slan

Banned
They might if that's the only way to get Formosa back. Pardon the slight inclusion of modern politics, but as a reference, the PROC's willingness to risk (nuclear) war with the USA over Taiwan means that it's not exactly out there that the KMT would similarly risk total war with Japan (and thus upend the balance of power in the Asia-Pacific) just to get Formosa back.
They can't bro. They wouldn't be able to defeat the Japanese Navy so hard that they are able to invade Tokyo with ground troops, never. If they get close the US would be worried about them and would help the Japenese, as another fellow already pointed out.
 
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They can't bro. They wouldn't be able to defeat the Japanese Navy so hard that they are able to invade Tokyo with ground troops, never. If they get close the US would be worried about them and would help the Japenese, as another fellow already pointed out.
Then Japan retains Formosa, likely indefinitely. No, more than that, Japanization proceeds as per OTL, with Formosa - or rather, Takasago - becoming the fifth Home Island by the 50s at the latest.
 
Then Japan retains Formosa, likely indefinitely. No, more than that, Japanization proceeds as per OTL, with Formosa - or rather, Takasago - becoming the fifth Home Island by the 50s at the latest.
AFAIK Karafuto (Sakhalin) was already part of the Home Islands so 6th Home Island I think.
 

raharris1973

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Obviously OTL China has decided it has decades of getting richer to do before it actually goes about *enforcing* any such territorial claims.

A Soviet Union that is losing territory to the Nazis as late as 44-45 (like China was to Japan) and had not recovered any territory back to the invaders' start line by the time of surrender (like China in Aug-Sept 1945), is not the Soviet Union we know and love from WWII.

China's value was as a major and stubborn "force-in-being" Japan cannot finish
USSR's value was as relentless and unstoppable "force-that-is-beating" that finishes Germany
 
The gap was bigger. Japan was weaker than Nazi Germany, but the USSR was MUCH stronger than China, who wasn't a great power like the three.

And even if the Chinese had completely defeated and driven the Japanese out of China they would still not be able to invade Japan the same way the Russians invaded Germany, cuz Japan was one of the strongest naval powers of the world, much more stronger than Nazi Germany and the USSR in this regard.

The only country who could fuck up Japan the same way the Russians did to the Germans was the US.
As an alt-historian I consider that it is withing the realm of possibility that a more successful Kuomintang China can at least build up a powerful air force and hit Japan with chemical and biological weapons.
 
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