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|English to English translations [PRO]|
Social Sciences - History / WW 2
|English term or phrase: the Japanese marbles|
|"We now know that the Soviet Union, whose armies had raced across Manchuria and down Sakhalin Island in August 1945, intended to invade Hokkaido, the northernmost of the Japanese home islands. That invasion would have taken place I two months before Operation Olympic, our invasion of the south island, Kyushu. While Emperor Hirohito's surrender declaration awaited the official signing in Tokyo Bay on September 2, the Soviets continued to gobble up territory and were poised to make a leap to Hokkaido. That amphibious landing would have been an improvised affair, but no matter: Of Cold War confrontations that almost happened but didn't none is more frightening in its potential for fatal mischief.|
It's not just that the Soviets would, in just over two weeks and at minimal cost, have picked up a large share of **the Japanese marbles** that had taken the Allies almost four years and thousands of lives to gather. If their landing force had established so much as a beach hold on Hokkaido - and American raiders had apparently gone ashore there with little resistance that summer - the Soviets would have had a legitimate claim to the island, a significant (and no doubt troublemaking) role in the formal surrender preparations, and a zone of a partitioned Tokyo. Just think of the Cold War implications of a Berlin in the Pacific. (Looking on the positive side, we could have blockaded the Soviet zone of Tokyo in response to Stalin's blockade of Berlin in 1948, which might have ended that crisis - or created a more general one.) Consider, too, the deadening effect of a Soviet Hokkaido on Japan's reconstruction - or the inhibiting effect that a hostile occupying force on a home island would have had on our decision to intervene in Korea, using Japan as a base. The chances for future regional and international conflict seem infinite."
I don't understand what "marbles" means in this sentence. If someone could explain or rephrase...
I'd say your term is based on the phrase "all the marbles", meaning everything to be had. The US had been attempting to defeat Japan completely, i.e. to take all the marbles, every territory under Japanese control. The marbles are the prizes to be had.
all the marbles
1. (idiomatic) everything; all that is to be had
after a day's worth of events, it came down to one last match; this one was for all the marbles
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Local time: 21:13
|many thanks, your explanation was very useful!|
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