An epic portrait of Japan in crisis, it combines graphic military history and highly readable fiction to depict an aspiring nation modernizing at breakneck speed. The two armies clash at the battle of Liaoyang, where Japan seals a victory which shocks the world.
Anyone curious as to how the "tiny, rising nation of Japan" was able to fight so fiercely for its survival should look no further. Clouds above the Hill is an exciting, human portrait of a modernizing nation that goes to war and thereby stakes its very existence on a desperate bid for glory in East Asia. The following ISBNs are associated with this title:.
Books by Shiba Ryotaro
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Clouds above the Hill by Shiba Ryotaro, Phyllis Birnbaum | Waterstones
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An epic portrait of Japan in crisis, it combines graphic military history and highly readable fiction to depict an aspiring nation modernizing at breakneck speed. ISBN: Titled Saka no Ue no Kumo in the original Japanese, Clouds Above the Hill, is both extremely obscure, and extremely important to the military and naval historian concerned with the Russo-Japanese War of It was not translated into English until in , at the expense of Shiba-admirer publisher Sumio Saito, essentially as a personal gift to the Western world.
But it has not been widely promoted, and remains generally unreviewed, unread, and unknown to those who would find it most valuable. For example, in H. But Shiba tells us that the howitzers were originally permanently emplaced coast defense weapons.
Clouds above the Hill
Only after two attempts to storm the fortress had already failed did engineer Gen. Arisaka Nariakira suggest the wholly novel idea of moving the guns into the field in September Without the existence of tractors, this was a remarkable technical feat; in required a huge number of men pulling on a huge number of ropes to move them into their field emplacements, much like the Egyptians building the pyramids.
This position permitted them to observe and spot the fire of these monster guns, and essentially sink the Russian Far Eastern Fleet in a day. How could this and many other misperceptions go uncorrected for so long? The answer is the language barrier; few Westerners have been fluent enough to freely consult Japanese-language sources, and translations into English of Japanese historical books and primary sources have until just recently been rather few.
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