Tojo, Hideki hēdā´kē tō´jō [key], 1884–1948, Japanese general and statesman. He became prime minister after he forced Konoye's resignation in Oct., 1941. His accession marked the final triumph of the military faction which advocated war with the United States and Great Britain. As the most powerful leader in the government during World War II, he approved the attack on Pearl Harbor and pushed the Japanese offensive in China, SE Asia, and the Pacific. His military coordination with Nazi Germany was weakened by mutual mistrust and divergent Russian policies. At home, the Japanese government asserted totalitarian control. Tojo resigned in July, 1944, after the loss of Saipan in the Marianas. In Apr., 1945, he recommended that the war be fought to a finish. He attempted suicide in Sept., 1945, but he was arrested by the Allies as a war criminal, tried, convicted, and executed.
See R. J. C. Butow, Tojo and the Coming of the War (1961).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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