Northern Eurasia 1904: Outbreak of the Russo-Japanese War
Russia's tightening influence in Manchuria and Korea led to tensions with Japan. With the Russians also building the Trans-Siberian Railway to connect their European heartland to the Far East, the Japanese decided they had to act quickly to prevent total Russian domination of the region. On February 8, the Japanese launched a surprise torpedo attack on the Russian Pacific Fleet at Port Arthur, triggering war.
30 Jan 1902 Anglo-Japanese Alliance▲
The United Kingdom and the Empire of Japan signed the Anglo-Japanese Alliance in London, promising that they will support each other if either country became involved in a war with more than one Great Power. The Alliance was announced on 12 February 1902 and marked the end of Britain's Splendid Isolation.
8–9 Feb 1904 Battle of Port Arthur▲
The Empire of Japan launched a squadron of destroyers on a surprise night attack against the Russian fleet anchored at Port Arthur, Manchuria. Engagements continued over the following morning, ending at midday when the Japanese withdrew. Although neither side had lost any major ships in the battle, the Russians were ill-equipped to repair their damages. The next day, on 10 February, the Japanese declared war, formally beginning the Russo-Japanese War.