‘Overcoming and overcome by modernity: Japan at war’ charts Japan's early-20th-century emergence as a great imperial power in Asia. Radical chauvinism was one response to modernity. The Sino–Japanese war and the Russo–Japanese War were an attempt to gain recognition from the Great Powers and secure a sphere of influence. Japan's contribution to World War I further enhanced its status. The international environment remained somewhat unsympathetic, and Japan's gains were less than hoped. Economic collapse and isolation undid the democratic work of the Taisho period. War in China spiralled into an invasion of Indochina, leading to a US oil embargo and a disastrous war with the US.