Instead of closing their factories, the
fascist Japanese government chose
to invade China.
Before World War II, Japan exported all their goods—mostly silk, a luxury item. When the Great Depression began, luxuries were given up, leaving Japan unable to fuel her factories. To stop the depression, the Japanese had the choice of closing their factories or invading China for more resources. At this time, Japan's government - consisting of an emperor (Emperor Hirohito) and a parliament (known as a diet) - was slowly turning fascist. This allowed the military and factory owners to have more influence over the country's decisions. So, of course, Japan chose to invade China.