Japan Declares War
A Time-limit of nine days had been fixed by Japan for Germany's acceptance of her ultimatum, but Germany scornfully ignored
the mandate. Accordingly, on the day appointed, August 23, 1914, Japan formally declared war against Germany. There were many Germans living in Japan, but none of these were molested, all being permitted to pursue their regular vocations. In Germany, however, a different policy was adopted. Every Japanese subject in Germany was arrested and all the funds deposited by the Japanese Government in the Deutsche Bank of Berlin were seized. The German Ambassador remained at the Japanese capi- tol until August 30.
Bombardment of Tsing-tau Forts
ON August 25, 1914, the day before the formal Declaration of War, a squadron of twelve Japanese battleships, with a fleet of transports carrying 22,980 soldiers and 142 heavy siege guns, headed for Tsing-tau. The fleet was in command of Vice-Admiral Hiko- nojo Kamimura, while the land forces were commanded by Gen. Kamio Mitsuomi, Maj. Gen. B. Horiuchi and Maj. Gen. Hanzo Yamanashi.
Tsing-tau and its environs formed a large entrenched camp protected by 23 forts of concrete and steel, garrisoned by 5000 German marines. The first line of defence, on the seaside, consisted of five forts connected by trenches and protected by barbed wire entanglements.
The second principal defences were the heights known as Mt. Moltke, Mt. Bismarck, and Mt. Iltis, commanding the plain. The outer line of defence, eight miles long, was along the Litsum River to the sea, at a distance of some ten miles from the city.
The harbor mouth had been sewn with mines, and the shores for twenty miles were guarded by batteries. In the harbor was an Austrian warship, the Kaiserin Elizabeth, and four gunboats. Three airplanes assisted in the defence. The command of the German forces was vested in the Governor-General of Kiau-chau, Admiral Meyer-Wai deck.
Proposals were under way to remove the Austrian wa...