Shōzō Sakurai was a general in the Imperial Japanese Army during the Second Sino-Japanese War and World War II. Sakurai was born in Nagoya, although his official records list Hagi city, Yamaguchi prefecture as his hometown, he graduated from the 23rd class of the Imperial Japanese Army Academy in 1911 and the 31st class of the Army Staff College in 1919. He was an infantry officer, but became a specialist in military transport, he spent a short time in France as a military attaché. In the early 1930s he was an instructor at the War College from 1934 to 1936 commanded the IJA 77th Regiment. Sakurai served as an investigator for the Cabinet Planning Department and was in charge of harbor facilities and attached to Naval Transport Headquarters. In 1938 he became Inspector of Central China Harbor Facilities, he was promoted to major general in March 1938. In 1938, Sakurai was given command of the Infantry group of IJA 22nd Division and in 1939 was attached to Central China Expeditionary Army headquarters before becoming Chief of Staff of the Thirteenth Army in China.
He was promoted to lieutenant general in 1940. In 1941 Sakurai became commander of IJA 33rd Division in China under IJA 11th Army, participated in the invasion of Siam and of Burma in the Burma Campaign, was garrisoned in Arakan. In 1943, Sakurai was reassigned back to Japan as head of the Armored Warfare Department under the Army Ministry. However, in 1944, Sakurai returned to Burma as Commander of Twenty-Eighth Army, his army invaded Bengal to draw the British away from Imphal in support of Japanese armies in the U-Go Offensive. By February 22, 1944, the IJA 28th Army was in retreat. By July 20, 1945, Sakurai had withdrawn to Moulmein, he died in Tokyo at the age of 96, his grave is at the Tama Cemetery in Fuchū, Tokyo. Dupuy, Trevor N.. Encyclopedia of Military Biography. I B Tauris & Co Ltd. ISBN 1-85043-569-3. Fuller, Richard. Shokan: Hirohito's Samurai. London: Arms and Armor. ISBN 1-85409-151-4. Louis, Allen. Burma: The Longest War. Dent Publishing. ISBN 0-460-02474-4. Ammenthorp, Steen. "Lieutenant-General Shozo Sakurai".
The Generals of World War II. Budge, Kent. "Shozo Sakurai". Pacific War Online Encyclopedia
5th Air Division
The 5th Air Division is an inactive United States Air Force unit. Its last assignment was based at Sidi Slimane Air Base, Morocco, it was inactivated on 15 July 1958. The unit's origins begin with the World War II 5th Bombardment Wing; this unit was part of Twelfth Air Force before being reassigned in November 1943 to the Fifteenth Air Force. The 5th BW engaged in heavy bombardment B-17 Flying Fortress operations against Germany. During the Cold War, the 5th AD was an intermediate command echelon of Strategic Air Command, absorbed the resources and responsibilities of the USAF Mission to Morocco as part of Sixteenth Air Force in 1957. Inactivated in end of 1957 when the USAF drew down its forces from Morocco at the request of the Moroccan government, it was replaced by the SAC 4310th Air Division which absorbed the mission and personnel of the 5th AD. The 5th Air Division originated on 19 October 1940 at Washington, its initial mission was air defense of the northwest United States with three bombardment groups flying early B-17 Flying Fortresses, as well as the B-18 Bolo and its B-23 Dragon variant.
With the United States' entry into World War II, the mission of the 5th Bomb Wing was changed to that of a strategic heavy bomber wing, in July 1942 being assigned to the new Eighth Air Force. However, the 5th Bomb Wing was reassigned to the Twelfth Air Force in October 1942, to support the Western Task Force being assembled for the Operation Torch landings, planned for November; the 5th moved to North Africa in November, its subordinate units began flying missions from French Morocco in late 1942. The 97th and 301st Bomb groups, both being transferred from Eighth Air Force, were the pioneer heavy bomb groups in North Africa. Three weeks prior to the invasion saw a number of secret missions flown by the 97th BG; the first of these occurred on 18 October 1942 when General Mark Clark, commander of ground forces in the Western Task Force, flew to Gibraltar, along with a box containing $100,000 in gold 20 Franc coins, which were going to be paid to corrupt Vichy France officials in North Africa in order to secure their cooperation during the coming invasion.
However, after Clark landed in Gibraltar, the coins were lost overboard when they were on the final leg of their journey. On 5 November General Dwight Eisenhower and British General Kenneth Anderson was flown on a 97th BG B-17 were flown from Britainto Gibraltar; the following day, General James Doolittle, the newly named commander of Twelfth Air Force was flown to Gibraltar. Doolittle's B-17 was intercepted by four Ju-88s over the Bay of Biscay, forcing the pilot to dive and make a run for it just above the ocean's surface; the co-pilot of the aircraft was injured by a strafing run of one of the German aircraft, Doolittle reached for the first aid kit and attended to the wounded man. Afterward, Doolittle helped fly the aircraft to Gibraltar. Shortly after the invasion, the 97th and 301st moved from their bases in England to an airfield at Tafraoui, Algeria; the conditions in Algeria were sparse compared to that in England, but by 24 November the two groups attacked the docks at Bizerte, Tunisia.
As the American forces moved eastward, the 5th's units flew from Algeria beginning in January 1943, attacking coastal targets in Tunisia, concentrations of Rommel's Afrika Corps. The 5th BW moved to Tunisia in August. Targets included airdromes, marshalling yards and troop concentrations. In February 1943, the 5th, in direct support of ground operations, bombed enemy troop concentrations in the Kasserine Pass. From its airfields in Tunisia, its subordinate units bombed Pantelleria and marshaling yards and airdromes on the Italian mainland. By October, the 5th Bomb Wing consisted of the two B-17 groups as well as two P-38 equipped fighter groups. On 1 November 1943, Fifteenth Air Force was established as a second American strategic air force in the European Theater, it was hoped that the 15th AF stationed in the Mediterranean would be able to operate when the Eighth Air Force in England was socked in by bad English weather. Twelfth Air Force would continue to operate, however it would be realigned as a tactical air force.
The 97th and 301st were joined with three additional B-17 groups with its reassignment to Fifteenth Air Force. Missions were flown from Tunisia in November against a Messerschmidt assembly plant in Austria, against some Italian targets, however the wing and its groups were in the process of moving to new airfields captured around Foggia in Italy in late September. Advanced echelons moved working with engineering units to prepare the airfields and extend runways to accommodate the B-17; the 2d Bomb Group moved to Amendola airfield, while the 97th moved to the Foggia airfield, as its base at San Giovanni was still not ready. The 301st flew into the 99th into Tortorella. Once settled into their new bases around Foggia the 5th began a series of raids, attacking enemy targets in Germany, Hungary, Yugoslavia and Bulgaria. In June 1944, its groups began landing on airfields behind the Russian front. On these missions, American aircraft took off from airdromes in Italy, made a bombing attack, landed on airdromes in the Soviet Union.
They reversed the process. In August 1944, the 5th Wing supported the invasion of Southern France; the 5th Bomb Wing continued strategic bombing missions until the Germans surrendered in May 1945. It was inactivated in Italy on 2 November 1945. Strategic Air Command formed two new air divisions in early 1951; the 7th Air Division was formed for its bases in En
Masazumi Inada was a lieutenant general in the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II. Inada was born in Tottori Prefecture in August 1896, he graduated from the 29th class of the Imperial Japanese Army Academy in 1917, where he specialized in artillery. He went on to graduate from the 37th class of the Army Staff College with honors in 1925. After serving in a number of administrative positions with the Imperial Japanese Army General Staff, Inada was assigned as a military attaché to France from 1929-1931. After his promotion to colonel, Inada served as Chief of the 2nd Section, 1st Bureau, of the General Staff from 1938 to 1939, was thus involved in the planning of the Battle of Wuhan and subsequent operations in the Second Sino-Japanese War. Inada was involved in the planning for the ill-fated Battle of Lake Khasan and Battle of Khalkhin Gol in the Soviet-Japanese Border Wars. From 1940 Inada was commanding officer of a heavy artillery regiment based in Acheng in northern Manchukuo. In 1941 he became Vice Chief of Staff of the 5th Army in Manchukuo.
He was promoted to major general in 1941, became Chief of Staff of the 5th Army from 1942. Inada was sent as Vice Chief of Staff of the Southern Expeditionary Army Group in the Pacific Theater from 1942 to 1943. To support Japanese forces in New Guinea he was sent in 1943 to command of the 2nd Field Operations Base Area. In 1944 he became commander of the 6th Air Division; that year, due to a diplomatic incident in Thailand, he was placed in reserve reassigned as commander of the 3rd Shipping Transport Command, based in Singapore. Promoted to lieutenant general in April 1945, Inada was Chief of Staff of the 16th Area Army until the surrender of Japan. After the end of the war, Inada was arrested by the American occupation authorities and tried before a military tribunal held in Yokohama for war crimes, he was found guilty of permitting atrocities against prisoners of war in the Fukuoka area during the war, sentenced to seven years in prison in April 1946. He was released in 1951, died in 1986.
Coox, Alvin. The Anatomy of a Small War: The Soviet-Japanese Struggle for Changkufeng/Khasan, 1938. Greenwood Press. ISBN 0-8371-9479-2. Coox, Alvin. Nomonhan: Japan Against Russia, 1939. Stanford University Press. ISBN 0-8047-1835-0. Ammenthorp, Steen. "Masazumi Inada". The Generals of World War II
Takeo Itō was a general in the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. Takeo Itō was born in the city of Fukuoka in the Fukuoka prefecture The commanding officer of the IJA 228th Infantry Regiment at the start of the Second Sino-Japanese War, he assumed command of 114th Infantry Regiment in August 1940. Upon attaining the rank of major general on August 25, 1941, Itō was given command of the IJA 38th Division's infantry group, the primary Japanese division in the invasion of Hong Kong. In early 1942, Itō was reassigned to an independent command in his own name, the "Itō Detachment", consisted of 228th Infantry Regiment, 38th Infantry Division and the 1st Kure SNLF, which took part in the Battle of Ambon in the Dutch East Indies, in the occupation of Timor. All of these campaigns were characterized by the massacre of prisoners. In November, Itō, along with one regiment of the 38th Division, was shipped to Guadalcanal. On 11 November, during the pivotal Battle of Guadalcanal, Itō was positioned by Lieutenant-General Harukichi Hyakutake to attack Marines under the command of United States General Alexander Archer Vandegrift who were involved in the Matanikau offensive against Japanese positions.
However, Vandegrift called off his offensive that day after receiving intelligence reports of Hyakutake's plans. Itō helped command 38th Division troops during the Battle of Mount Austen, the Galloping Horse, the Sea Horse, he and the 38th's survivors on Guadalcanal were evacuated by the Japanese navy during the first week of February 1943. Itō became commander of the 40th Independent Mixed Brigade, stationed at New Ireland on 8 July 1944, he was promoted to lieutenant-general on November 26 of that year. At the end of the war, Itō was taken into custody by Australian forces, was tried as a war criminal in a military tribunal for the murder of Chinese civilians, he was sentenced to death at Rabaul, New Britain on 24 May 1946. However, Ito was released on 28 October, sent to Hong Kong. In 1948, Itō was accused of war crimes at the Hong Kong's War Crimes Court, found guilty and sentenced to 12 years in prison, he died on 24 February 1965. L, Klemen. "Forgotten Campaign: The Dutch East Indies Campaign 1941-1942".
Chapter VIII:Advances Towards Kokumbona in United States Army in World War II: The War in the Pacific - Guadalcanal: The First Offensive by John Miller, pp. 196, 201-202, 204 Pearl Harbor to Guadalcanal: History of U. S. Marine Corps Operations in World War II, by Lt. Col. Frank O. Hough, USMCR. Shaw, Jr. Volume I, Chapter 8: Critical November The Hong Kong Society of Wargamers: "The Fall of Hong Kong, Christmas 1941", by Andrzej Cierpicki Benjamin Lai: Hong Kong 1941–45, First Strike in the Pacific War, Osprey Publishing 2014, ISBN 978-1-78200-268-0
Heitarō Kimura was a general in the Imperial Japanese Army. He was sentenced to death by hanging. Kimura was born in Saitama prefecture, north of Tokyo, but was raised in Hiroshima prefecture, which he considered to be his home, he attended military schooling from an early age, graduated from the Imperial Japanese Army Academy in 1908. He was commissioned into the artillery, he served during the Japanese Siberian Intervention of 1918–1919 in support of White Russian forces against the Bolshevik Red Army. He was subsequently sent as a military attaché to Germany. From the late 1920s Kimura was attached to the Inspectorate of Artillery and an instructor at the Field Artillery School, he was selected as a member of the Japanese delegation to the London Disarmament Conference from 1929 to 1931. On his return to Japan, he was promoted to lieutenant colonel and assigned command of the IJA 22nd Artillery Regiment. From 1932 to 1934, he returned to the Field Artillery School, followed by the Coastal Artillery School as an instructor.
In 1935, Kimura first served in an influential role close to the centre of Japanese policy when he was appointed Chief of the Control Section in the Economic Mobilisation Bureau at the Ministry of War. The next year, he was appointed Head of the Ordnance Bureau, he was promoted to the rank of major general in 1936. He became a lieutenant general in 1939, was assigned a combat command with the IJA 32nd Division in China from 1939 to 1940. From 1940 to 1941, Kimura served as Chief of Staff of the Kwangtung Army in Manchukuo. Kimura returned to the Ministry of War in 1941 as Vice Minister of War, assisting War Minister Hideki Tōjō in planning strategies for campaigns in the Second Sino-Japanese War as well as the Pacific War. From 1943 to 1944, he was a member of the Supreme War Council, where he continued to exert a major influence on strategy and policy. Late in 1944, as the course of the war went against Japan after the disastrous Battle of Imphal, Kimura was again assigned to the field, this time as commander in chief of the Burma Area Army, defending Burma against the Allied South East Asia Command.
The situation was not promising as Japanese forces were under severe pressure on every front, the Allies had complete air superiority. Reinforcements and munitions were short, Imperial General Headquarters entertained the unsupported hope that Kimura would be able make his command logistically self-sufficient. Unable to defend all of Burma, Kimura fell back behind the Irrawaddy River to attack the Allies when their supply lines were stretched thin - a move which dislocated the Allied plans; such was Allied material superiority that the main weight of the offensive was switched, the vital positions of Meiktila and Mandalay were captured at the Battle of Meiktila and Mandalay. From that point, Kimura was only capable of delaying actions, he opted to preserve his forces rather than defend the capital, Rangoon to the last man. Promoted to the rank of general in 1945, he was still reorganising his forces at the surrender of Japan in mid-1945. After the end of World War II, Kimura was arrested by the Allied occupation powers and tried by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East for war crimes.
The tribunal cited his role in planning the strategy for the war in China and Southeast Asia, condemned him for laxity in preventing atrocities against prisoners of war in Burma. Although the Death Railway was built from 1942 to 1943, Kimura did not arrive in Burma until late 1944, Kimura was charged with the abuse and deaths of the military and civilian prisoners used to construct the railroad. Found guilty in 1948 on Counts 1, 27, 29, 31, 32, 54 and 55 of the indictment he was condemned to death by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East and hanged as a war criminal. Burma Campaign Fuller, Richard. Shokan: Hirohito's Samurai. London: Arms and Armor. ISBN 1-85409-151-4. Latimer, Jon. Burma: The Forgotten War. London: John Murray. ISBN 978-0-7195-6576-2. Minear, Richard H.. Victors' Justice: the Tokyo War Crimes Trial. Princeton University Press. ISBN. Ammenthorp, Steen. "Heitaro Kimura". The Generals of World War II. Budge, Kent. "Kimura, Heitaro". Pacific War Online Encyclopedia. Clancy, Patrick.
"IMTFE Judgement". HyperWar Foundation. Myanmar at www.worldstatesmen.org
Seishirō Itagaki was a General in the Imperial Japanese Army in World War II and a War Minister. Convicted of war crimes, he was executed in 1948. Itagaki was born in Morioka city, Iwate prefecture into a samurai class family serving the Nanbu clan of Morioka Domain, he graduated from the Imperial Japanese Army Academy in 1904. He fought in the Russo-Japanese War in 1904–1905. From 1924-1926, Itagaki was a military attaché assigned to the Japanese embassy in China. On his return to Japan, he held a number of staff positions within the Imperial Japanese Army General Staff during 1926–1927 before being given a field command as commanding officer of the IJA 33rd Infantry Brigade based in China, his brigade was attached to the IJA 10th Division from 1927–1928. Itagaki was transferred to command the IJA 33rd Infantry Regiment in China from 1928–1929, under the aegis of the Kwantung Army. Itagaki rose to become Chief of the Intelligence Section of the Kwantung Army from 1931, in which capacity he helped plan the 1931 Mukden Incident that led to the Japanese seizure of Manchuria.
He was subsequently a military advisor to Manchukuo from 1932–1934. Itagaki became Vice Chief of Staff of the Kwantung Army from 1934, Chief of Staff in 1936. From 1937 to 1938 Itagaki was commander of the IJA 5th Division in China during the early part of the Second Sino-Japanese War, his Division took a leading part in the Battle of Beiping-Tianjin, Operation Chahar, the Battle of Taiyuan. However, in the Battle of Xuzhou his forces were repulsed during the Battle of Taierzhuang in the vicinity of Linyi that prevented them from coming to the aid of Rensuke Isogai's IJA 10th Division. Recalled to Japan in 1938, Itagaki served as War Minister from 1938-1939. On December 6, 1938, Itagaki proposed a national policy in accordance with Hakko Ichiu at the Five Ministers Conference, the Japanese highest decision making council, the council made a decision of prohibiting the expulsion of the Jews in Japan and China as Japanese national policy. Itagaki returned to China again as chief of staff of the China Expeditionary Army from 1939-1941.
However, the defeat of Japanese forces against the Soviet Red Army at Nomonhan in the summer of 1939 was a major blow to his career, he was reassigned to command the Chosen Army in Korea considered a backwater post. As the war situation continued to deteriorate for Japan, the Chosen Army was elevated to the Japanese Seventeenth Area Army in 1945, with Itagaki still as commander in chief, he was reassigned to the Japanese Seventh Area Army in Singapore and Malaya in April 1945. He surrendered Japanese forces in Southeast Asia to British Admiral Louis Mountbatten in Singapore on 12 September 1945. After the war, he was taken into custody by the SCAP authorities and charged with war crimes in connection with the Japanese seizure of Manchuria, his escalation of the war against the Allies during his term as War Minister, for allowing inhumane treatment of prisoners of war during his term as commander of Japanese forces in Southeast Asia, he was found guilty on counts 1, 27, 29, 31, 32, 35, 36 and 54 and was condemned to death in 1948 by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East.
Itagaki was hanged on 23 December 1948 at Tokyo. Bruno Birolli "Ishiwara, l'homme qui déclencha la guerre", ARTE éditions/Armand Colin. Ammenthorp, Steen. "Itagaki Seishiro". The Generals of World War II. Budge, Kent. "Itagaki Seishiro". Pacific War Online Encyclopedia
Kitsuju Ayabe was a general in the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. Ayabe graduated from the 27th class of the Army Cavalry School in October 1917. On receiving his commission as Second lieutenant, he was posted to the 12th Cavalry Regiment, he served in the Siberian Intervention from August 1918 to July 1919. Ayabe attended the Army War College in 1924, was promoted to captain after graduation, he served in a number of staff positions, was sent to Poland and the Soviet Union from August 1928-November 1930 as a military attaché. After his return to Japan, he was promoted to major, in 1934 to lieutenant colonel. From 1935-1937, Ayabe served as Chief of the Maneuvers Section of the Kwantung Army, from 1937–1939, as Chief of 1st Section in the Imperial Japanese Army General Staff, still based in Manchukuo at the start of the Second Sino-Japanese War. From 1939-1940, Ayabe was commander of the 25th Cavalry Regiment, based in China, was subsequently promoted to the position of Deputy Chief of Staff of the IJA 3rd Army in 1940.
From 1940-1941, he was sent on a military liaison mission to Berlin and Rome to coordinate efforts between Japan and the other Axis members of the Tripartite Alliance. Subsequently, from July 1941 – 1942, Ayabe was deputy Chief of Staff of the Kwantung Army and became Chief of Staff of the Japanese First Area Army from July 1942. After his promotion to lieutenant general in October 1943, Ayabe was reassigned to the Southern Expeditionary Army Group as Deputy Chief of Staff and was based in Singapore; the Southern Army became the Japanese Seventh Area Army in 1944, Ayabe was appointed as Chief of Staff. However, he was badly injured in an airplane crash in February 1944, was assigned to staff duty in Tokyo through the remainder of the war. Ayabe retired from active military service with the dissolution of the Imperial Japanese Army at the end of World War II. From 1955 to 1970, he worked as an advisor for Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. Hayashi, Saburo. Kogun: The Japanese Army in the Pacific War.
ASIN: B000ID3YRK: The Marine Corps Association. Ammentorp, Steep. "Ayabe, Kitsuju". The Generals of World War II. Budge, Kent. "Ayabe, Kitsuju". The Pacific War Online Encyclopedia