When Japan Used Bicycles To Invade China

Decades before mountain bikes were invented, bicycles have proven to be an outstanding means of transportation for impassable terrains, which is why the Imperial Japanese Army decided to use bicycles rather than horses. They allowed the soldiers to travel faster and with less effort, enabling them to surprise and confuse their opponents. At the start of World War II, the German Army used bicycles to invade both Norway and Poland, and on the other side of the world, the Imperial Japanese Army took note. In its invasion of China, Japan employed some 50,000 bicycle troops. Using bicycles, the Japanese troops were able to move faster than the withdrawing Allied Forces, often successfully cutting off their retreat. The Imperial Japanese Army accomplished the invasion of the entire 695-mile-long Liaodong Peninsula in less than 70 days and triumphed over the allied British, Australian, Indian, and Malaysian defenders. Their victory ushered in the end of the British Empire in Asia.