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Takeshi Ruchang
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Some attributes
First Name: Takeshi Ruchang
Second Position: Crown Prince and Shogun
Third Nationality: Japanese
Other attributes
Fourth Allegiance: Democratic Party of the Empire of Japan
Fifth Birth: 2050
Sixth Died: 12 January 2107

Takeshi Ruchang was the Prime Minister, later dictatorial Shogun of the Japanese Empire. A cruel and ambitious man, he engineered military takeovers of East Asia under the guise of humanitarian relief that led to the Vietnam War and Pacific War.

In late 2105 Ruchang was appointed Shogun and proceeded to consolidate personal and political power, suspending the constitution and beginning a crackdown on opposition parties, culminating in the dissolution of parliament in 2106.

Despite maintaining high domestic approval, Ruchang's leadership turned the country into an international pariah, and he was charged with war crimes under United Nations Resolution 14. During the civil war sparked by the poison food crisis, Ruchang was assassinated by his brother and rebel leader Takeshi Shiro.

Ruchang was born in 2050. His mother was Chinese and his father claimed descent from the Tokugawa family. He joined the Democratic Party and became an MP at an unknown date, serving as Minister of Justice in 2095. He was a chess player and karate expert who wrote wuxia novels as a hobby. His brother, Takeshi Shiro, was a general in the Imperial Japanese Army and colluded in Ruchang's quest for power.

Ruchang became Prime Minister in 2098 and began an aggressive campaign to expand and modernize the Japanese army. In 2104 Japan launched a full-scale invasion of China in what it claimed was a peacekeeping mission to end anarchy and warlordism and restore "free trade". The operation immediately came under international scrutiny as its methodology resembled military conquest rather than humanitarian aid, and the United Arab Republic denounced what it claimed was an opportunistic land grab. Following reports of mass atrocities in Vietnam, Japan launched an identical mission to the region that provoked similar controversy after state news reports suggested Japan was using the 'freed' citizens for cheap labour. In order to ensure further international intervention adhered to humanitarian auspices, the United Nations established a peacekeeping mission shortly afterward. Japan refused to recognize the mission's legitimacy, and confusion over the Rosemary incident led to Japan's suspension in the General Assembly in 2105. Ruchang decried what he called an "international conspiracy" masterminded by the United Arab Republic, and Japan withdrew from the United Nations shortly afterward.

On 18 July, Japan launched a full-scale amphibious assault on Ho Chi Minh City, beginning the Vietnam War. Under the pretext of total war and national emergency, Ruchang began consolidating power and silencing the opposition. A resolution delivered to the Diet with Imperial assent that winter suspended elections, appointing Ruchang supreme commander of the armed forces and conveying the title of Shogun. He subsequently took personal command of the Imperial Japanese Navy. The Communist Party staged a protest against the coup that was violently suppressed, resulting in 300 deaths, 700 injuries, and 3000 arrests. In the Fall of 2106 the government began arming far-right militias to suppress peace activists and opposition parties, provoking waves of murder and violence resulting in tens of thousands of deaths. A later bombing of the Diet, widely suspected to be a false-flag operation, was used as an excuse to attack the Liberal Party, sparking another wave of public violence. Japanese use of a nuclear missile on Cairo led the UN to officially declare Japan a rogue state, and Ruchang and his government were charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity.

That same season, Ruchang, 56, married Princess Sutematsu, 19-year-old granddaughter to the Emperor, establishing himself as a potential successor. Ruchang planned to use an anticipated victory against the Allied fleet to shame Emperor Iwao and usurp the throne. Foreign scholars ridiculed the marriage, citing Ruchang's Chinese heritage as proof of illegitimacy. Nevertheless, Ruchang continued to amass power after the poison food crisis led to the deaths of many government ministers whose offices he promptly seized. The sabotage, initially pinned on the Allies, led to a brief surge in popular support; Ruchang was declared Crown Prince and heir apparent, dissolved the Diet and banned all parties.

However, with Japan's fighting capability on the verge of collapse by year's end and Ruchang stubbornly refusing to surrender, his brother Takeshi Shiro turned on him, provoking a brief but bloody civil war. Shiro executed Ruchang on 12 January 2107 as he attempted to flee the country, and the Japanese Empire unravelled soon after.

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