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hopefully without losing sight of what it meant to be Japanese in all other respects. A postal service from Britain, a School and military systems from France, a Prussian Constitution — thus the trappings of democracy like voting and elections and parties without actually granting the resultant MPs any real powers — and so on.In a fanatic stance-change to hold Europe in awe and/or amusement, some went as far as advocating for intermarriage with Europeans to bring "superior racial stock" into Japan.The Shogun's forces slug it out, but are eventually driven off Honshu entirely and flee to Hokkaido where they set up a short-lived Republic in Hakodate.Eventually, this too falls, and Japan is more or less united under a new government, which moves the Emperor to Edo (renamed Tokyo, meaning "East Capital") and proclaims the start of the Meiji ("Enlightened Rule") era.This changes again in gruff looking photo in the 1890s, also with clear edges of brow which are telltale signs of doctoring the photo).Mutsuhito himself did nothing and just like the Shogunate before, none gave him actual power, and spent his days playing with women.
Yukichi Fukuzawa, a popular thinker of this era widely revered to the point of gracing the 10000-yen bill until quite recently, advocated his country should sever ties with "bad Asian friends" and befriend the "good and just European friends." Apparently pillaging, slavery, and exploitation was considered "good and just." By the turn of the century, it had a fledgling modern army and navy, trained by German and British consultants respectively - all Japan's 1904-battleships having been bought wholesale from French and British shipyards.Because this was the final push for samurai to keep feudal-era special entitlement and government handouts, and they eventually lost despite using modern weaponry, no samurai ever hoped to stage a military coup again, and would instead fight to restore special treatment of the old feudal classes by playing politics within the new Constitutional Monarchic system with a Parliament.Choshu and Satsuma in turn would become the original bodies for the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy, and would bicker and ostracize, and even come inches close to laying siege on each other's H Qs several times.In short, Europe was the new China, and this called for a revision in all their administrations.
There was very quickly a backlash against this sort of attitude, and there was a certain crisis of identity caused by the rapid changes in Japanese society.They seize the boy-Emperor Mutsuhito at his Residence in Kyoto before the Shogun can secure him.