Organized Panel Session
Unlike the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, which took place in Tokyo, the War Crimes Trials in Khabarovsk (Soviet Far East) over the Kwantung Army officers, including the Japan's bacteriological and chemical warfare unit (also known as Unit 731), has not attracted as much interest from historians for a number of reasons, including the limited access to the primary sources during the Soviet period. However, the Khabarovsk Trials (1949) and its consequences took a very important place in shaping the new global order after WWII in Asia.
The presenter uses newly declassified Russian archival documents, exposing the complicated character of the USSR’s stance toward Japan in the context of Moscow’s affairs with Washington on the path to geopolitical confrontation – the Cold War. He revisits the US-Soviet bargaining over the Japanese war criminals, Moscow’s attempts to organize a new trial over Emperor Hirohito, as well as the campaign launched by the Socialist bloc against the US accused in using the Japanese bacteriological warfare during the Korean War (1950-1953).