French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

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French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Eustace » Sat Jun 18, 2011 6:06 pm

Does anyone know more about this? I knew that basically Vichy handed over Indochina to Japan in 1940 - I didn't know that up to mid 1945 they were helping them to run it.
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Sitri » Sat Jun 18, 2011 9:24 pm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_French_Indochina_Campaign
Seems they recognized the Free French, but were still Vichy through Japanese coercion.
PS:Hell of a question, BTW.
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Eustace » Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:20 am

Thanks for the link Sitri - I was just very surprised when I read it yesterday. I mean, Colonialism in itself is awful, but to help another occupying power (And I think I'm right in saying a much worse occupying power) to create a (much worse) Colonial presence in Cochin China seems almost cruel and unusual. According to a speech by Ho Chi Minh, if you believe it...

In the autumn of 1940, when the Japanese fascists violated Indochina's territory to establish new bases in their fight against the Allies, the French Imperialists went down on their bended knees and handed over our country to them.
Thus, from that date, our people were subjected to the double yoke of the French and the Japanese... more than two million of our fellow citizens died of starvation. On March 9 [1945] the French troops were disarmed [my emphasis] by the Japanese. The French Colonialists either fled or surrended, showing that not only were they incapable of 'protecting' us, but that, in the span of five years, they had twice sold our country to the Japanese.
On several occasions before March 9, the Viet Minh urged the French to ally themselves with it against the Japanese. Instead of agreeing to this proposal, the French Colonialists so intensified their terrorist activities against the Viet Minh members that before fleeing they massacred a great number of our political prisoners detained at Yen Bay and Cao Bang...


So, according to this the French gave up without a fight in 1945. Not only that but, if we can take the above as true, then haven't you got a good case for the French Colonial Regime hating its subjects to such a degree that it was happy to work with an invading power to clamp down on them even further?
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Destroyer25 » Sun Jun 19, 2011 4:18 pm

Eustace wrote:Thanks for the link Sitri - I was just very surprised when I read it yesterday. I mean, Colonialism in itself is awful, but to help another occupying power (And I think I'm right in saying a much worse occupying power) to create a (much worse) Colonial presence in Cochin China seems almost cruel and unusual. According to a speech by Ho Chi Minh, if you believe it...

In the autumn of 1940, when the Japanese fascists violated Indochina's territory to establish new bases in their fight against the Allies, the French Imperialists went down on their bended knees and handed over our country to them.
Thus, from that date, our people were subjected to the double yoke of the French and the Japanese... more than two million of our fellow citizens died of starvation. On March 9 [1945] the French troops were disarmed [my emphasis] by the Japanese. The French Colonialists either fled or surrended, showing that not only were they incapable of 'protecting' us, but that, in the span of five years, they had twice sold our country to the Japanese.
On several occasions before March 9, the Viet Minh urged the French to ally themselves with it against the Japanese. Instead of agreeing to this proposal, the French Colonialists so intensified their terrorist activities against the Viet Minh members that before fleeing they massacred a great number of our political prisoners detained at Yen Bay and Cao Bang...


So, according to this the French gave up without a fight in 1945. Not only that but, if we can take the above as true, then haven't you got a good case for the French Colonial Regime hating its subjects to such a degree that it was happy to work with an invading power to clamp down on them even further?


I wouldn't trust Wikipedia on matters like this.

Ask here.

http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forums/f ... .php?f=132

ACG has a number of PTO experts who will be able to shed a lot of light on this subject.
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Sitri » Sun Jun 19, 2011 8:34 pm

Just finished the book Rolling Thunder In a Gentle Land, and it mentions this in the first chapters. Lacks in details though, anyone know a good book?
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Eustace » Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:35 am

Actually my quote there is from a book - typed out by hand I might add, at my own personal expense... ;) it's from Seminar Studies: The Origins of the Vietnam War by Fredrik Logeval (And Sitri I hope you appreciate the I went upstairs to check that for you! ;) ). The book isn;t very long, but it has a great back section full of original documents like the Vietnamese Declaration of Independence (that's what I quoted from) the NLF program of 1960, the Taylor Report and on and on and on for about 30 pages. And obviously since I got my info from said book, it saids quite a few things about the matter at hand.
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Sitri » Wed Jun 22, 2011 12:33 pm

:thanks: Going to have to check it out. Payday's Thursday and the bookstores are looking that much more tempting.
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Witten » Sun Aug 21, 2011 11:59 am

on a similar note, i wonder how slowed down the Japanese advance through south east would've been if the french hadn't surrendered to the Japanese at Indochina and the British hadn't surrendered Singapore without a fight. They outnumbered the Japanese 3 to 1 , if i'm not mistaken, yet they Surrendered the moment the Japanese threatened to bomb the city.

Would the Japanese have been able to secure the resources of the Dutch East Indies before the US intervened?
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Eustace » Wed Aug 31, 2011 5:33 pm

Let's see here... first off the British had no idea that they weren't outnumbered in Singapore - Yamashita actually was very forceful with Percival at their surrender meeting at the Singapore Ford Factory for this very reason. I'm not sure if the bombing was all that made them surrender, either - the troops on the ground seemed so sure they didn't stand a chance that they'd been pushing trucks and supplies into the harbour for a week before the Japanese demanded talks. At the end of the day Japan carried out a rather magnificent Blitzkrieg through terrain they were just as unhappy in as were the British, despite the claims of the losing power, and they put most of their success down to the common or garden bicycle. They fooled every colonial power using subtle tricks and tactics they'd been practicing for decades (Their training manuals called for guards on duty at all their embassies abroad to remain unshaven, look untidy and so on. Similar deliberate lack of discipline and slovenliness on parade when in sighting range of a foreigner had the Western powers convinced that the Japanese soldier was next to useless - they couldn't have been further from the truth). They took advantage of Fortress Singapore's most glaring defect - the lack of landward defences. And they sank the pride of the British Navy in Southern waters, the Prince of Wales. Saying that Britain 'gave up' is rather taking something away from them (And the British, who were taken completely by surprise).

I think that the Japanese would have been massively slowed in Indochina if France hadn't supported their occupation. As noted above, they would have had the support of the locals - the Viet Minh was quite prepared to work with the French against the Japanese. In unfriendly terrain that greater powers were to find insurmountable with better weaponry? I think Indochina could have sucked the life out of the Japanese war machine in mainland China.

Your question about the DEI is a bit confusing - I'm assuming you mean if Japan had attacked there and Singapore without attacking Pearl Harbour and the Phillipines? Probably - the Dutch influence there was minimal, and in the early stages at least Japan had the support of the local nationalist independence movements (Sukharno in particular, I was surprised to note). The problem was, the Phillipines stood across Japan's supply route to its would - be new territories.

To widen this a little, I'd be interested to hear what people think about the Japanese 'Co Prosperity Sphere'. I, until recently, held the conventional view that it was a front supported only by gullible Nationalists like in India, but then I found out that it had been supported by Sukharno in Indonesia, and that Japan had actually granted Burma near - autonomy in 1943... thoughts, anyone?
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Jorgios » Sat Oct 22, 2011 4:46 am

The British actually ordered the French to rearm the Japanese to fight the Viet Minh after surrender.

http://library.monmouth.edu/vietnam/EighteenYearsInVietnamWhyAnAnalysis_Outlook_19730302.pdf
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Re: French assistance to Japan in Indochina?

Postby Witten » Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:41 am

Eustace wrote:To widen this a little, I'd be interested to hear what people think about the Japanese 'Co Prosperity Sphere'. I, until recently, held the conventional view that it was a front supported only by gullible Nationalists like in India, but then I found out that it had been supported by Sukharno in Indonesia, and that Japan had actually granted Burma near - autonomy in 1943... thoughts, anyone?


true that, it's a piece of history that's looked over quite often in my native Indonesia. Fact of the matter is, the Indonesian nationalists even had their own militia, trained and armed by the Japanese, and run by a committee of Indonesian nationalist leaders like Sukarno himself.
It would be interesting to see what would've happened if the allies had landed in Java and expect to liberate the island ala the Phillipines in 1944. Except with Java you had a populous jungle island with a local people and semi-autonomous nationalists that largely supported the Japanese.

here's a video of what i'm talking about.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOOwTSwp ... re=related

propaganda i know, but when you've got Indonesian folk heroes like Sukarno supporting the Japanese, it's enough to make any Indonesian nationalist fight alongside Tojo. And that was certainly the case in Java, can't say the same about most of the other islands though.
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