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Why did the Japanese love bayonets so much?

Discussion in 'Small Arms and Edged Weapons' started by Zefer, Sep 2, 2009.

  1. Obergefreiter

    Obergefreiter Member

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    My father was a veteran of the 1940 and 1941 campaigns. He had the luck to receive peacetime training in the German Wehrmacht before going to war. Once he demonstrated me how to use the 98K rifle and the bayonet storming an enemy entrenchment. First shot - fired from the shoulder - then reloaded - second shot - fired from the hip - then a thrust with the bayonet and the third enemy impaled. When I asked im if he ever used the bayonet he told me that he did it only once. Most soldiers avoided to come so close to the enemy and preferred to shoot.
     
  2. Totenkopf

    Totenkopf אוּרִיאֵל

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    I will not even start about how foolish a statement that is.
     
  3. A-58

    A-58 Cool Dude

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    Well, it did generate a few chuckles I'm sure....
     
  4. Totenkopf

    Totenkopf אוּרִיאֵל

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    Too true.;)
     
  5. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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  6. Richie B

    Richie B Member

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    Nobody seems to have mentioned useful the bayonet was to the Japanese when dealing with nurses, Chinese civilians and wounded POWs.

    Richie
     
  7. justdags

    justdags Member

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    "few meen are killed by the bayonet, however many are scared by it, Fix Bayonets at the onset of every engagement" Gen Patton

    I must wonder if that tank with the bayonet was Patton personal tank
     
  8. malinta

    malinta recruit

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    they even use babies...they throw them in the air and then catch them with a bayonet.
     
  9. Totenkopf

    Totenkopf אוּרִיאֵל

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    Where did you read that at????
     
  10. malinta

    malinta recruit

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    some of my relatives who survived the war told me about it..im from the philippines..they did that to babies..just to sow terror on the locals so as to discourage them from helping american soldiers in hiding or local guerillas..they do it as an example..or just for the plain fun of it..or they skin you alive..the japanese were pretty inventive on killing people..much more inventive than the germans or any other axis nation
     
  11. Totenkopf

    Totenkopf אוּרִיאֵל

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    Thats just beyond sickening. All I can say.
     
  12. malinta

    malinta recruit

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    yeah..very sickening..but that's war..but they were ferocious soldiers though..ready to die in a heartbeat..that's an admirable trait on a military perspective
     
  13. Kobalt04

    Kobalt04 Dishonorably Discharged

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    'Superb naval gunnery' notwithstanding, Japanese soldiers were counted poor shots with small arms by many of their enemies.
     
  14. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    I bet there are a lot of dead soldiers and Marines that will argue the point; many more than can be credited to "lucky shots". If you deminish that ability of the enemy you also deminish the accomplishments of those who fought them.
     
  15. Kobalt04

    Kobalt04 Dishonorably Discharged

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    I would not take it so personally. I am not diminishing or disparaging the Japanese soldier; I am telling any interested reader of what his military enemies thought of his ability to shoot military small arms. I am inclined to think, as they were there and I obviously was not, it is a realistic assessement.

    Below is a direct quote from the Soldier's Guide to the Japanese Army, published by the US War Department and dated 15 November 1944 and it reads on pages 12 to 14 as follows:

    'The Japanese soldier is a notoriously poor marksman; even snipers who are specially picked and trained men fail to capitalize upon the advantages which their infinite patience and skill in concealment otherwise would afford. In some combat areas it has been reported that Allied troops enjoyed virtual immunity to casualties from this type of fire at ranges greater than 50 yards, and snipers seldom have fired at moving targets.'

    This is clearly not a ringing endorsement of the Japanese soldier as a marksman or sniper. And as it is an assessment or evaluation of the Japanese Army and soldier by a major Allied power's war department or ministry for their own troops, I am inclined to believe it. This is hardly disparaging the Japanese soldier but merely pointing out a deficiency that he has or had. I had read similar reports from British and Australian soldiers over the years along the same lines.

    For the actual wepbages for the above quote, see: Soldier's Guide to the Japanese Army

    The fact remains that the Japanese were poor shots with military small arms.
     
  16. Triple C

    Triple C Ace

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    Kobalt,

    I suggest you to read SW Pacific Veteran's thread on his experience fighting in Buna Gona and other desolate islands. As he put it, sloppy thinking like what you espoused can get you killed. Most Japanese soldiers were poor with riflecraft, but they also used concealed marksmen extensively and many of these were good shots.
     
  17. Kobalt04

    Kobalt04 Dishonorably Discharged

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    Triple C

    First, some 64 years after the end of the war, your point is absolutely academic. And second, it is hardly 'sloppy thinking' but a valid observation made by the enemies of the Japanese, that is those who actually fought them. Why would the US War Department publish this fact if it were untrue? Surely not to get their own troops killed through 'sloppy thinking' by underestimating the 'riflecraft' [sic] of the Japanese. You can note that anyone can shoot accurately and hit a target at very short or pointblank range, even the Japanese, and shooting over short range was the usual practice of the Japanese and their enemies in fighting in the jungled regions of the Pacific . But I will repeat myself: the Japanese were poor shots with military small arms and this observation was made by those returned soldiers who had fought them and who obviously should know. I'll take their word over yours.
     
  18. Triple C

    Triple C Ace

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    SW Pacific Veteran is a resident Pacific veteran soldier of the forum, i.e. one of "the enemies of the Japanese". What I have quoted was his response to a forum member who posted the "Japanese Tactics" pamphlet that you are referring to and asked him about his opinion of it. His response is that arrogance like this got men killed.

    The US War Department's little pamphlets often erred. They were not objective analysis of the enemy's strength. They are written to inform, but also to boost morale. If you read more of those books, you would also find a large number that had been marked by Military Intelligence as containing erroneous information. One of the N. Africa booklets for example quoted a tanker who thought his Sherman was invulnerable to German 88 at ranges over 1,200 yards (see example here). Those little booklets were written, printed or distributed in great haste, often after nothing but a cursory interview of a small number of soldiers.

    If you want to live in a fantasy land where the Japanese were always poor shots and couldn't hit the broadside of the barn 'cuz they're Japanese and you read it one wartime pamphlet, you go straight ahead.
     
    formerjughead likes this.
  19. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    I wish I could find the Training film where the war department says the MG42's bark is worse than it's bite.

    A lot of the training films had a healthy dose of "propaganda" to help deminish the fear of new soldiers especially those in the "know Your Enemy" series.
     
  20. Hanz Gooblemienhoffen

    Hanz Gooblemienhoffen Member

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    Man..maybe its just me but some of the comments about the Japanese (poor shooters/bayonets to kill civilians) are kinda bugging me.

    Besides the "whole" its kinda racist, not to mention silly to say that the Japanese are poor shots?..why because their eyes are "slanted"?...thats not even a little funny. Not to mention sounds similar to the beliefs that Japanese would be bad pilots.

    As for killing of civilians...totally true but rather one sided way to view the Pacifac campaign...atrocities and crimes were committed by all sides and really some of the "holier than thou" beliefs are kinda irksome to me.

    I mean how many civilians (women and children etc) were incinerated by the dropping of the A-bombs? Is that any more of less offensive than bayonets..? Fire bombing of Dresden anyone? And more importantly ..does it add anything to this discussion?

    I really have come to appreciate this site for the knowledge and information that has been provided by the majority of posters here...but maybe im just sensitive or something...but it would be great if we could discuss issues of WW2 without the misunderstandings and erroneous assumptions about other cultures that typified the combatants attitudes in WW2.

    Sorry for rant but some of these comments annoyed me.
     

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