The main goal of this article is to present the historical development of the kokutai doctrine (pol. national policy), which emerged in the Empire of Japan in 1867–1945 and which was one of the ideological foundations of the Japanese internal and foreign policy. Its formulation and subsequent consolidation in the form of legal regulations is closely related to the period of modernization and rivalry with the European colonial powers and the United States for influence on the political map of East Asia. The kokutai doctrine embodies concepts such as chauvinism, nationalism, racism, militarism, expansionism and statism. Attempts to put them into practice led to the outbreak of the World War Two in the Pacific and the total defeat of Japan against the Allies.