Hardcore History Show 63 – Supernova in the East II Description: Deep themes run through this show, with allegations of Japanese war crimes and atrocities in China at the start leading to eerily familiar, almost modern questions over how the world should respond. And then Dec 7, 1941 arrives…

In “Hardcore History” journalist and broadcaster Dan Carlin takes his “Martian”, unorthodox way of thinking and applies it to the past. Was Alexander the Great as bad a person as Adolf Hitler? What would Apaches with modern weapons be like? Will our modern civilization ever fall like civilizations from past eras? This isn’t academic history (and Carlin isn’t a historian) but the podcast’s unique blend of high drama, masterful narration and Twilight Zone-style twists has entertained millions of listeners. Find the books mentioned in Hardcore History Show 63 – Supernova in the East II below.

Books Mentioned in this Podcast - Show 63 Supernova in the East II:

Book Title: The Nanking Atrocity, 1937-38 – Complicating the Picture

Author: Bob Tadashi Wakabayashi

Book Title: Documents of the Nanking Safety Zone

Book Title: Hirohito and the Making of Modern Japan

Author: Herbert P. Bix

Book Title: Hirohito’s War – The Pacific War 1941 – 1945

Author: Francis Pike

Book Title: Roosevelt to Reagan – A Reporter’s Encounters with Nine Presidents

Author: Hedley Donovan

Book Title: President Roosevelt and the Coming of the War, 1941

Author: Charles A. Beard

Book Title: War is a Racket

Author: General Smedley D. Butler

Book Title: The Rising Sun

Author: John Tolland

Book Title: Pearl Harbor – from Infamy to Greatness 

Author: Craig Nelson

Book Title: At Dawn We Slept – The Untolf Story of Pearl Harbor

Author: Gordon W. Prange

Book Title: Target: Pearl Harbour

Author: Michael Slackman 

Book Title: Day of Infamy

Author: Walter Lord

Hardcore History Show 63 – Supernova in the East II: Unraveling Japan's Path to Global Conflict

In Hardcore History Show 63 – Supernova in the East II, Dan Carlin continues his riveting exploration of Japan’s tumultuous past, focusing on the events leading up to World War II. Building on the foundation laid in Show 62, Carlin delves deeper into the political, social, and military factors that drove Japan towards global conflict. This compelling podcast offers an in-depth look at Japan’s complex history, providing listeners with a greater understanding of the nation’s role in shaping the course of the 20th century.

The Second Sino-Japanese War and Japan's Expanding Empire

Carlin begins by examining the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945), a brutal conflict that pitted Japan against China in a struggle for control over East Asia. He discusses the factors that led to the outbreak of hostilities, including Japan’s expansionist ambitions and a desire to secure valuable resources in the region. The war resulted in millions of casualties and further cemented Japan’s position as a dominant power in Asia.

The Marco Polo Bridge Incident and the Escalation of Conflict

The Marco Polo Bridge Incident in 1937 marked a turning point in the Second Sino-Japanese War, as it led to a full-scale invasion of China by Japanese forces. Carlin details the events surrounding the incident, explaining how a minor skirmish quickly escalated into a larger conflict. The war showcased Japan’s military prowess and its willingness to engage in total war, foreshadowing the nation’s actions during World War II.

Japan's Relationship with the Axis Powers

Carlin explores Japan’s alliance with Germany and Italy, highlighting the ideological and strategic motivations behind the formation of the Axis Powers. He explains how Japan’s leaders sought to align themselves with other powerful nations in order to advance their own imperial ambitions, as well as to counter the perceived threats posed by Western democracies. This alliance further isolated Japan from the international community, setting the stage for its eventual entry into World War II.

The Rape of Nanking and Japan's War Crimes

One of the most brutal chapters in Japan’s history was the Rape of Nanking, a horrific episode in which Japanese soldiers committed mass murder and atrocities against Chinese civilians during the Second Sino-Japanese War. Carlin discusses the event in detail, shedding light on the factors that led to such extreme violence and the lasting impact it had on the region. The Rape of Nanking remains a dark stain on Japan’s history and serves as a chilling reminder of the potential horrors of war.

Japan's Economy and the Drive for Resources

A key driver of Japan’s expansionist policies was its need for resources to fuel its growing economy and military. Carlin explains how Japan’s leaders viewed the acquisition of territories rich in resources, such as Manchuria and Southeast Asia, as essential to the nation’s survival and prosperity. This drive for resources would ultimately push Japan into conflict with the United States and other Western powers, as they sought to protect their own interests in the region.

The Tripartite Pact and Japan's Commitment to the Axis Powers

Carlin delves into the signing of the Tripartite Pact in 1940, which solidified Japan’s commitment to the Axis Powers and further isolated the nation from the international community. He explains how the agreement was designed to deter the United States from entering the war and to strengthen the alliance between Japan, Germany, and Italy. The pact represented a significant step towards Japan’s full participation in World War II, bringing the nation closer to the path of global conflict.

Japan's Preparations for War and the Attack on Pearl Harbor

As tensions between Japan and the United States escalated, Carlin discusses the preparations Japan made for a potential war, including the build-up of its military and naval forces. He also examines the decision to launch a surprise attack on the American naval base at Pearl Harbor in 1941, an event that would ultimately plunge the United States into World War II. Carlin provides a detailed account of the attack and the strategic motivations behind it, revealing the calculated risks taken by Japan’s leaders in their pursuit of territorial expansion.

The Pacific War and Japan's Military Strategy

With the outbreak of the Pacific War following the attack on Pearl Harbor, Carlin explores the military strategies employed by Japan during the conflict. He explains how Japan’s leaders sought to quickly conquer territories in Southeast Asia and the Pacific, believing that a rapid expansion would force the United States and its allies to negotiate a favorable settlement. Carlin also examines the challenges Japan faced as it attempted to maintain its gains and defend against the growing power of the Allied forces.

Japan's Society and the Impact of War

Carlin delves into the impact of the war on Japanese society, discussing how the nation’s people were mobilized to support the war effort. He explains how the Japanese government used propaganda and indoctrination to instill a sense of loyalty, duty, and sacrifice in its citizens, ensuring their unwavering support for the nation’s cause. The war also brought immense suffering to the Japanese people, as the conflict increasingly took a toll on the country’s economy, infrastructure, and civilian population.

Conclusion: Supernova in the East II and Japan's Descent into Global Conflict

In Supernova in the East II, Dan Carlin masterfully weaves together a captivating narrative of Japan’s path towards global conflict, exploring the myriad factors that contributed to the nation’s entry into World War II. From the Second Sino-Japanese War to the attack on Pearl Harbor, Carlin provides an in-depth analysis of the events, decisions, and motivations that shaped Japan’s trajectory during this tumultuous period. This gripping podcast serves as an essential resource for understanding the complex history of Japan and its role in the most significant conflict of the 20th century.