Author Topic: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91  (Read 554 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

SPQR

  • Guest
By: Richard G. Latture

An Imperial Japanese Army officer who hid on a Philippine island refusing to surrender until 29 years after World War II ended died on Friday at age 91. Lt. Hiroo Onada had waged a guerilla campaign against villagers on the island of Lubang, ignoring pleas from Japanese officials and family members to lay down his arms. It took a March 9, 1974, face-to-face meeting with his former commander, Major Yoshimi Taniguchi, at a remote location on the island to convince Onada that the war was over.

Onada had been trained as an intelligence officer and guerrilla tactics coach before arriving on Lubang in 1944 with orders never to surrender, never to resort to suicide attacks, and to hold out until reinforcements arrived. He and three soldiers diligently obeyed the commands after Japan officially surrendered to the Allies on Sept. 2, 1945.

The four men kept busy surveying military facilities, attacking local residents, and sometimes clashing with Philippine troops. For food, they trapped game and birds, stole rice and fruit, and occasionally killed villagers’ cows and made dried beef.

One of the men emerged and returned to Japan in 1950, and another, Corporal Shoichi Shimada, was shot in killed by a search party in May 1954. The last of Onada’s comrades, Private First Class Kinshichi Kozuka, died in October 1972 as a result of a shootout with local troops. Less than two years later, after cautiously arriving for his meeting with Taniguchi, who had since become a bookseller, the lieutenant received orders from his old commander to “cease all combat activities and operations immediately.”

In his memoir, No Surrender: My Thirty-Year War (Naval Institute Press, 1999), Onada recalled that he was skeptical to the end: “I stood still, waiting for what was to follow. I felt sure Major Taniguchi would come up to me and whisper, ‘That was so much talk. I will tell you your real orders later.’ . . . Major Taniguchi slowly folded up the order and for the first time I realized that no subterfuge was involved. This was no trick—everything I had heard was real. . . . We really lost the war! How could they have been so sloppy? Suddenly everything went black.”

Wearing his 30-year-old uniform, Onada surrendered to Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos before setting off for Japan, where he received a hero’s welcome. He was one of the last of many so-called Japanese “holdouts,” servicemen scattered around the Pacific who refused to surrender and came to symbolize Japan’s wartime perseverance and devotion to Emperor Hirohito.

Later in life Onada lived in Brazil, where he raised cattle, and since 1984 he had organized Onada Nature School, which provided nature and life education in Japan.

In a 1995 interview with the Associated Press, he said: “I don’t consider those 30 years a waste of time. Without that experience I wouldn’t have my life today.”

http://news.usni.org/2014/01/17/japanese-soldier-surrendered-29-years-world-war-ii-dies-91?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=japanese-soldier-surrendered-29-years-world-war-ii-dies-91

SPQR

  • Guest
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2014, 05:15:05 AM »
I remember they did a news piece on this on television
« Last Edit: January 18, 2014, 05:29:51 AM by SPQR »

Offline olde north church

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 5,136
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2014, 06:48:35 AM »
to Hell with denim, what was that uniform woven from?
Why?  Well, because I'm a bastard, that's why.

Offline rangerrebew

  • America defending Veteran
  • TBR Contributor
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 61,220
  • “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2014, 10:40:11 AM »
I remember this very well.  I was in the Philippines at the time and at first thought it was some kind of joke.
Abraham Lincoln:

There is no grievance that is a fit object of redress by mob law.
--January 27, 1838 Lyceum Address

Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties. And not to Democrats alone do I make this appeal, but to all who love these
great and true principles.
--August 27, 1856 Speech at Kalamazoo, Michigan

Let us then turn this government back into the channel in which the framers of the Constitution originally placed it.
--July 10, 1858 Speech at Chicago


Offline Cincinnatus

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 5,514
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2014, 05:41:12 PM »
I'm not sure whether to admire the guy's devotion to duty or to wonder whether he isn't some kind of nut job.
We shall never be abandoned by Heaven while we act worthy of its aid ~~ Samuel Adams

Offline olde north church

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 5,136
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2014, 05:42:47 PM »
I'm not sure whether to admire the guy's devotion to duty or to wonder whether he isn't some kind of nut job.

Maybe his wife looked like Godzilla!
Why?  Well, because I'm a bastard, that's why.

Offline Charlespg

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1,122
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2014, 05:54:47 PM »
to Hell with denim, what was that uniform woven from?
coconut fiber
Rather Trump Then Cackles Clinton

Offline olde north church

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 5,136
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2014, 06:28:25 PM »
coconut fiber

I'm guessing somewhat a bit less scratchy than Russian toilet paper?
Why?  Well, because I'm a bastard, that's why.

SPQR

  • Guest
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2014, 09:11:04 PM »
coconut fiber


In 1941-42 the infantryman wore the Model 98 uniform, introduced in 1938. This was made in both khaki-brown cloth for winter and lighter cotton for summer and tropical use.
http://www.reenactor.net/ija/1a-une_early-war.html
« Last Edit: January 18, 2014, 09:11:33 PM by SPQR »

Offline Charlespg

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 1,122
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2014, 10:24:42 PM »
In 1941-42 the infantryman wore the Model 98 uniform, introduced in 1938. This was made in both khaki-brown cloth for winter and lighter cotton for summer and tropical use.
http://www.reenactor.net/ija/1a-une_early-war.html
maybe a different Japanese  holdout but here

or  might be this guy i was talking about
 http://www.wanpela.com/holdouts/profiles/yokoi.html
Rather Trump Then Cackles Clinton

Offline olde north church

  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 5,136
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2014, 06:21:06 AM »
maybe a different Japanese  holdout but here

or  might be this guy i was talking about
 http://www.wanpela.com/holdouts/profiles/yokoi.html


I remember one of these these in the National Enquirer from the mid-70s.  I've had Levi's for 10 years but nothing like this.
Why?  Well, because I'm a bastard, that's why.

SPQR

  • Guest
Re: Japanese Soldier Who Surrendered 29 Years After World War II Dies at 91
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2014, 06:14:59 PM »
maybe a different Japanese  holdout but here

or  might be this guy i was talking about
 http://www.wanpela.com/holdouts/profiles/yokoi.html


The uniforms are similar


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf