Wednesday, July 2, 2014

New Word for the Day: Hatevasion

I think I have discovered the only case in world history where the perceived humiliation of one world leader by another led to the mobilizing of an entire country and the deaths of tens of thousands. Toyotomi Hideyoshi's second invasion  of Korea was ostensibly to complete the goals he had failed to complete with the invasion of 1592 (integration into the Chinese world order, trade privileges, etc.) but according to accounts of the time, when the Ming sent a peace delegation and Konishi Yukinaga tried to hide the true terms from him, Hideyoshi flew into a rage. He expected to be made ruler on par with the Ming emperor (despite his lack of battlefield success), and felt the Koreans and Chinese were snubbing and mocking him. He was so angry, in fact, that he ordered a second invasion of Korea far more brutal than the first. The Japanese entertained no thoughts of making this a part of their empire anymore, but pillaged, razed, and murdered their way through the Korean countryside. Luckily for Korea, Hideyoshi was succeeded by the less vain Tokugawa Ieysu, who did not invade neighboring countries purely out of spite.

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