Would Imperial Japan inevitably cause a world war?

hey, all.

recently, i've been developing some ideas for how Japan develops in my ASB ATL. these are still very early-development, but i wanted to get some peer review on the basic concepts so far. the gist of it is that, even considering other PODs, (the whole point of the TL is to make an interesting world, not to be 100% plausible) Imperial Japan still becomes a thing and tries to establish the Co-Prosperity Sphere. a major difference, though, is that there's no Axis for them to join and they're basically doing it on their own. without getting into too terribly much detail, it involves them reaching the Indian Ocean and maybe even expanding the Co-Prosperity Sphere into that larger region, possibly unifying with Ethiopia, (which was actually attempted, as some of you may know, but basically ended when Japan chose to side with also-Axis Italy over Ethiopia) and maybe even reaching far enough to get at the Suez Canal

hopefully without getting bogged down with those details--again, since this is still pretty early in development--does anyone think that Imperial Japanese ambitions might inevitably cause a world war? i'd long been designing TTL with a few basic premises, one being that the World Wars don't take place, but i'm starting to think that Japan may well force the issue (for the record, i'm well aware that there are plenty of other conflicts that could qualify as world wars, including in much earlier centuries). thoughts?
 

Ramontxo

Donor
Sadly neither the government controlled the Army nor the Army High Echelons did control what the actual front line officers did. As long as that situation is not addressed they are going to have a China war they cannot end ( in terms of their liking) so imho they would inevitably crash on a major war
 
The big issue is that you need wars to weaken Japan's potential enemies. WWI let the IJN go from 6 or 7th to 3rd in terms of Naval strength, and make lesser gains in terms of economic power (they were still not that far ahead of Italy by 1940 OTL). To expand into the Indian Ocean they need to beat the RN, to do that plausibly you need to drag the RN closer down to Japan's level, something that required a World War OTL. And to reach that far they would have to beat France, who without WWI is a very tough nut to crack, and beating them gives the UK warning. To weaken those too nations, not have someone else fill the vacuum and avoid World Wars will take fancy footwork

Japan was arguably the country that most Won WWI, having seen economic growth, suffered no significant losses, grabbed Truk Lagoon, and saw it's potential rivals interrupt Naval construction in favor of the land war. As for WWII, the war in Europe let them take French Indochina with minimal fighting, giving them the bases for the next wave of assaults, and limited the amount of resources the UK had available for use.
 
The big issue is that you need wars to weaken Japan's potential enemies. WWI let the IJN go from 6 or 7th to 3rd in terms of Naval strength, and make lesser gains in terms of economic power (they were still not that far ahead of Italy by 1940 OTL). To expand into the Indian Ocean they need to beat the RN, to do that plausibly you need to drag the RN closer down to Japan's level, something that required a World War OTL. And to reach that far they would have to beat France, who without WWI is a very tough nut to crack, and beating them gives the UK warning. To weaken those too nations, not have someone else fill the vacuum and avoid World Wars will take fancy footwork

Japan was arguably the country that most Won WWI, having seen economic growth, suffered no significant losses, grabbed Truk Lagoon, and saw it's potential rivals interrupt Naval construction in favor of the land war. As for WWII, the war in Europe let them take French Indochina with minimal fighting, giving them the bases for the next wave of assaults, and limited the amount of resources the UK had available for use.
also something that i'll have to consider, so thanks :)
 
Japan could not cause a world war. They couldn't even finish China. If Britain and France are in good terms with Germany they would crush the Japanese Navy, with Soviet and American help. This wouldn't be a world war. If the war in Europe doesn't happen Japan probably retreats from China or make a deal when the western powers decide to impose an embargo.
 
Japan could not cause a world war. They couldn't even finish China. If Britain and France are in good terms with Germany they would crush the Japanese Navy, with Soviet and American help. This wouldn't be a world war. If the war in Europe doesn't happen Japan probably retreats from China or make a deal when the western powers decide to impose an embargo.
Germany couldn’t win either World War, but it didn’t stop them starting one and helping the other come about. Starting a War doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be able to win it.

To the OP, if you have want Japan to achieve what you’ve laid out, a World War is certain. To even have the slightest of chances to succeed, Japan needs allies or a vastly expanded Empire of “lesser” nations, either of which requires a coalition of nations to defeat them.
 
Germany couldn’t win either World War, but it didn’t stop them starting one and helping the other come about. Starting a War doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be able to win it.

To the OP, if you have want Japan to achieve what you’ve laid out, a World War is certain. To even have the slightest of chances to succeed, Japan needs allies or a vastly expanded Empire of “lesser” nations, either of which requires a coalition of nations to defeat them.
Bullshit. Germany is different, they could win both wars with more luck and competence. Japan simply doesn't stand a chance alone, even if you force situations.
 
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Vaporized

Banned
It would at least cause a regional war in the Pacific. Roosevelt's government was going to put embargoes on it just for the intervention in China. Even if the US Pacific fleet isn't moved to Hawaii.

America places the embargo, Japan's fuel supply is threatened, it tries to scare the US off by attacking Pearl Harbor or a nearby territory like the Philippines. America goes to war afterwards. Britain and France probably are caught up in the war later because Japan fears they will let the US use their bases in the region.
 
It would at least cause a regional war in the Pacific. Roosevelt's government was going to put embargoes on it just for the intervention in China.
In OTL, FDR did not resort to any serious sanctions against Japan until July 1941, and that was after "a Japanese ultimatum to France on July 12 demanding the right to occupy airfields in southern Indochina and to use Saigon harbor and Camranh Bay for their fleet. Unlike the concessions obtained in June, 1940, these sites could not be justified as vital to the blockade of Chiang Kai-shek. They portended rather a drive south against the Anglo-Dutch possessions. This new advance spurred Roosevelt and Hull into action. …" https://www.alternatehistory.com/forum/threads/real-history-question-did-congress-play-any-role-in-fdr’s-sanctions-on-japan.479211/#post-19860611
 
Bullshit. Germany is different, they could win both wars with more luck and competence. Japan simply doesn't stand a chance alone, even if you force situations.
Charming. We also differ on Germany’s realistic chances of winning both wars following the strategy they did (hint, fighting every other Western Great Power all at once is dumb). Point still stands that you don’t have to be able to win the war to start it.
 
Charming. We also differ on Germany’s realistic chances of winning both wars following the strategy they did (hint, fighting every other Western Great Power all at once is dumb). Point still stands that you don’t have to be able to win the war to start it.
Germany knocket Russia out of the Great War, and doing the same with France wasn't unrealistic. Japan can't knock the USA, France, Britain or the URSS out of the war even in 1x1. They are not stupid, they would not start a war with the whole world. Even the germans didn't think that Britain and France would enforce their guarantee in WW2.
 
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Japan could not cause a world war. They couldn't even finish China. If Britain and France are in good terms with Germany they would crush the Japanese Navy, with Soviet and American help. This wouldn't be a world war. If the war in Europe doesn't happen Japan probably retreats from China or make a deal when the western powers decide to impose an embargo.
Thinking that the British and French would crush the Japanese in their home waters is pretty optimistic.

Whether or not Japan could start a World War depends on hw you define a World War. They wouldn’t be anywhere near as successful as the Germans at it though.
 
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Thinking that the British and French would crush the Japanese in their home waters pretty optimistic.
They would destroy the japanese fleet and ruin their war effort in China. I never said they would do the invasion of the Home Isles, they didn't need unconditional surrender to win. And as far as fleet battles go they could indeed defeat the japanese if they haven't to keep and eye in Germany.
 
Thinking that the British and French would crush the Japanese in their home waters pretty optimistic.

Whether or not Japan could start a World War depends on hw you define a World War. They wouldn’t be anywhere near as successful as the Germans at it though.
Given the cr*pfest that was IJN ASW, it's not that hard.
 
They would destroy the japanese fleet and ruin their war effort in China. I never said they would do the invasion of the Home Isles, they didn't need unconditional surrender to win. And as far as fleet battles go they could indeed defeat the japanese if they haven't to keep and eye in Germany.
That’s highly debatable. The Japanese arguably had the worlds greatest naval aviators and the best carrier doctrine in the period. The British and French also have globe spanning Empires and they can’t commit their full strength to the Pacific, even if they aren’t fighting a war in Europe.
 
Thinking that the British and French would crush the Japanese in their home waters pretty optimistic.
They don't have to. A submarine campaign conducted by the RN and the MN which strangles Japanese trade and cuts off the Home Islands from the resources necessary to feed Japanese industry would've been more than enough to bring the Rising Sun to its knees
 
They don't have to. A submarine campaign conducted by the RN and the MN which strangles Japanese trade and cuts off the Home Islands from the resources necessary to feed Japanese industry would've been more than enough to bring the Rising Sun to its knees
The British submarine force wasn't really geared toward mercantile warfare and its historical performance (tons sunk/year) was about on par with Japan's. Meanwhile the RN surface force couldn't compete with the Japanese in carrier operations while the French Fleet had no carriers to speak of.
 
They don't have to. A submarine campaign conducted by the RN and the MN which strangles Japanese trade and cuts off the Home Islands from the resources necessary to feed Japanese industry would've been more than enough to bring the Rising Sun to its knees
Why are you assuming that they wouldn’t try to challenge the Japanese surface Fleet?
 
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