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The use of opium in China is apparently regarded by the Japanese authorities as one of the causes of the decadence of that empire. To such an extent does this feeling exist that it is said that out of a number of Japanese coolies employed in the China-Japanese War, a certain portion contracted the opium habit and for this were brought before the Japanese commander. Rather than allow them to return to Japan and introduce the habit there, it is reported that he had them lined up and shot. Considering the community of political interests in the Orient, and general friendly feeling between Japan and Great Britain, the pro-opium tendencies of the British government are perhaps worth considering as bringing in a discordant element that may give trouble in the future.
THE JAPANESE AND OPIUM.. JAMA. 1900;XXXVI(13):896-897. doi:10.1001/jama.1900.02470130044008