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Japanese Cannibalism Against Allied & Other POW's!

Discussion in 'Land Warfare in the Pacific' started by Spaniard, Apr 12, 2010.

  1. Spaniard

    Spaniard New Member

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    I did know that Cannibalism was practice in some Pacific Islands in WWII and read that a few Japanese, Russians also participated in this horific act. But I never knew the extent of it. While researching WWII War crimes against POW's I came across this, which I must add is very disturbing. Cannibalism was practiced by many Japanese soldiers,cannibalism was often a systematic activity conducted by whole squads under the command of officers, written reports and testimonials collected by the Australian War Crimes Section of the Tokyo tribunal, and investigated by prosecutor William Webb (the future Judge-in-Chief), indicate that Japanese personnel in many parts of Asia and the Pacific committed acts of cannibalism against Allied prisoners of war.

    One of the Accounts States, "[on November 12, 1944] the Kempeitai beheaded [an Allied] pilot. I saw this from behind a tree and watched some of the Japanese cut flesh from his arms, legs, hips, buttocks and carry it off to their quarters... They cut it small pieces and fried it."


    the Japanese started selecting prisoners and every day one prisoner was taken out and killed and eaten by the soldiers. I personally saw this happen and about 100 prisoners were eaten at this place by the Japanese. The remainder of us were taken to another spot 50 miles [80 km] away where 10 prisoners died of sickness. At this place, the Japanese again started selecting prisoners to eat. Those selected were taken to a hut where their flesh was cut from their bodies while they were alive and they were thrown into a ditch where they later died.

    Japanese war crimes - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Japanese soldiers killed and consumed five American airmen. This case was investigated in 1947 in a war crimes trial, and of 30 Japanese soldiers prosecuted, five (Maj. Matoba, Gen. Tachibana, Adm. Mori, Capt. Yoshii, and Dr. Teraki) were found guilty and hanged. In his book Flyboys: A True Story of Courage, James Bradley details several instances of cannibalism of World War II Allied prisoners by their Japanese captors.

    Cannibalism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    For more Info see these Links
    By Chester Nycum, paratrooper from 503 PIR on Noemfor.

    http://corregidor.org/Heritage_Battalion/nycum/ch5.html

    Reports about Japanese cannibalism are quite common.
    Look at page of War Diary of Australian 2/3 Machine Gun Battalion:

    http://www.awm.gov.au/database/awm52...=13&submit.y=5
     
  2. Icare9

    Icare9 Member

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    Just what is your agenda on this? You say "many" yet it must only be a minority, being camp guards, rather than the main fighting soldiers who were many miles away from PoW camps.... It just seems you go for inflammatory aspects to provoke and incite antagonism.

    Yet your tagline goes into eulogies about carrying a 34 inch Warrior Wakizashi knife? The wazikashi is the short knife, less than 34 inches - the katana is the sword....
    Are you admiring the Japanese or not? You seem confused, maybe a little sleep and study would help?
     
  3. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Good Ol' Boy Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    I was just commenting on this subject over at WW2Talk.

    James Bradley discusses this in his book Flyboys. The commander of Chichi Jima tortured and killed several aircrew who were shot down over that island, then ate their livers and other organs.
     
  4. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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  5. Spaniard

    Spaniard New Member

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    Is there something wrong with Japanese People or it's old Culture, I know many Japanese and never had a problem.

    It's a God Done Shame that a horrific act as Cannibalism in WWII, can't be discussed in a civil mater without unwarranted personal attacks and accusations.
     
  6. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    It wasn't a case of the Japanese (for the most part) wanting to eat human flesh, it was driven on by their sheer hunger in many instances. Cut off from Japan, with Japanese Command not resupplying the troops, what was a person to live off? People have this notion that tropical islands are lush and full of fruit and other things to eat, while this in reality is not the case. Tropical Islands, like all Jungles, have poor soil for growing things like crops. Apart from fishing, there is really no reliable food source on an Island. We've all read accounts on how emaciated (sp?) Japanese troops were...accounts of them being too weak to lift their guns up high enough to shoot, starvation, etc. I think this is why they resorted to cannibalism in several instances.

    I recall reading in one book (I forget which...maybe one about Burma) that a US Patrol was attacked and a few men were killed. The US troops pulled back, regrouped, and then pushed on trying to recover the bodies. Maybe an hour or two had passed, but it was enough time for the Japanese to basically splay open the dead bodies, for their livers and hearts, and also fut flesh from their legs - all for food - since they had no rations themselves.
     
  7. GI546

    GI546 Member

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    wow.i never knew this happened.
    horrific.horrific.
    having your last sight being crazy japenese soldiers cutting out your organs to eat them.
    wow.
     
  8. Spaniard

    Spaniard New Member

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    This is one Book
    Hidden horrors: Japanese war crimes in World War II
    By Toshiyuki Tanaka

    Hidden horrors: Japanese war crimes ... - Google Books



    I read the same thing, many times it was a necessity for survival. Protean was badly needed and many of the Animals in some Pacific Islands were not eatable, supplies running low or long periods without being resupplied.

    In the beginning of the Japanese Chines conflict in 1937-38 I read accounts of Cannibalism from Japanese Soldier also.

    I can give 4 links with this same information blow.

    Almost all of them were sent to POW camps in Siberia or Central Asia where, due to being chronically underfed by their Soviet captors, many apparently resorted to cannibalism. Fewer than 5,000 of the prisoners taken at Stalingrad would survive captivity. During the 872-day Siege of Leningrad, reports of cannibalism began to appear in the winter of 1941-1942, after all birds, rats and pets were eaten by survivors. Leningrad police even formed a special division to combat cannibalism.

    Wapedia - Wiki: Cannibalism.


    "Later that evening, a senior Japanese officer, of the rank of major general, addressed a large number of officers. At the conclusion of his speech, a piece of fried flesh was given to all present who ate it on the spot."

    Facts and scary pictures of Cannibalism

    "The Knights of Bushido" by Lord Russell of Liverpool, published 2002 by Greenhill Books, London, at pages 235-239.

    Before a military tribunal on Guam after the Japanese surrender. Japanese army officer, Major Matoba describes a number of occasions on which the flesh of murdered prisoners of war was consumed in the Japanese officers' mess. This disgusting behaviour took on the character of a festive occasion, with the flesh being washed down with sake. Very senior army and navy officers attended the officers' mess when human flesh was consumed and Major Matoba claims that they encouraged this vile behaviour.


    I knew this happened due to Food shortages, and not only in WWII. But never new the details of the Military extent of it. Like I stated in the begging of the Thread I found it very disturbing.


    Yuki Tanaka, Japanese researcher in his book "Hidden Horrors" mentioned report from Archemi village.
    He omitted names having in mind family of KIA soldier.
    Report of Lt. McFie written 20 May 1945:

    "In the morning 9-th of March 1945 about 0900, together with late sgt Sewell we found body of private Josh KIA 8-th of March.
    The body was in following state:
    (a) all cloth was removed
    (b) both hands cut off close to armpits
    (c) stomach was removed together with heart, liver and entrails
    (d) all muscles cut off from the bones
    (e) we could not find hands, heart and entrails
    (f) the only untouched body parts were head and feet.
    Japanese mess tin full of apparently human meat was about five feet from body of Pvt Josh, right between two dead Japanese soldiers."

    Private Thomas William Josh, 27 years old from Marrickville, (Sydney suburb), textile worker, married... was eaten by Japanese.


    Reports about Japanese cannibalism are quite common.
    Look at page of War Diary of Australian 2/3 Machine Gun Battalion:

    http://www.awm.gov.au/database/awm5...arch+1945&lastpage=165&submit.x=13&submit.y=5


    Quite often Australians and Americans were finding corpses of Japanese soldiers which had muscles cut off by their colleagues
    obvious signs of widespread cannibalism.

    Here's two photos of dead Japanese soldiers with muscles cut off for consumption:
    Due to the Horrific disturbing nature, I removed the pictures.

    Just Google Japanese Cannibalism in WWII you'll see many links
    with Pictures.
     
  9. Mussolini

    Mussolini Gaming Guru WW2|ORG Editor

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    Right, I think we've established it wasn't a "once in a blue moon" type of thing, but have already gone over the reasons why they had to resort to it. I can see the 'fanfare' they made over eating human flesh in that one instance you mentioned as being a way to separate their minds from what they were doing (much like a soldier does so that he can kill the enemy) as it was truly a matter of survival.

    I think, had the Japanese tried to supply their Islands and troops all over, there would have been a lot fewer cases of cannibalism, and only due occurring in life/death situations in regards to food supply.
     
  10. brndirt1

    brndirt1 Saddle Tramp

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    I really think we should differentiate between need, i.e. starving troops, and ritual cannibalism. One is akin to the starving rugby players in the Andes, the Donner Party in the Sierras, or starving troops on a desert island. The other is not born of need, but ritual.

    It must be remembered that in late December of 1944, the Australian Forces captured a top secret Japanese order signed by one General Major Aozu. This order clearly stated that any Japanese soldier who willingly consumes human flesh would be considered a criminal and penalized by death. This order excludes two circumstances from criminal definition, that of necessity (starvation) and if the human is the enemy.

    That order was put forward because to some men of Japanese decent; the cannibalism of dead Japanese soldiers by their colleagues was a form of bonding and mystical ritual for preserving the "memories" of the dead. Consumption of Allied soldiers was also considered a form of gaining their fighting power/spirit, a concept not alien to the Native Americans and other cultures. The Japanese order against cannibalism also mentioned that consumption of any enemy dead is excluded and in that case the practice is "all right".

    After the war Australian War Crimes Section collected many testimonies proving that cannibalism was common and took form of organized activity approved of in many cases by Japanese officers. Unfortunately cannibalism (at the time) was not a specific crime during war. War Law and International Law is based on precedents, and (at the time) cannibalism according to the existing law was not a crime per se, and not specifically mentioned.

    General Lieutenant Joshio Tachibana and eleven other Japanese officers were charged in the Tokyo Tribunal for Far East War Crimes for beheading two American pilots in August 1944 on Chichi Jima island in the Bonin Archipelago. Tachibana ordered their execution. One of the navy fliers, a USN radio operator was slaughtered and portions of his body consumed by the defendants.

    In another instance the US Tribunal sentenced to death Vice Admiral Mori and major Motoba for execution of five American pilots. Major Motoba pleaded guilty and admitted that he ate parts of the Americans because he hated them. Mori and Motoba were sentenced for "murder and prevention of honorable burial", but not for cannibalism.

    See:

    Welsh - Temp
     
  11. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    haven't we discussed this matter last year already?
     
  12. Spaniard

    Spaniard New Member

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    I did a Search on this Skipper before I posted the Thread. Not on the Japanese the only thing I found on this topic is Cannibalism On Bougainville.

    http://www.ww2f.com/wwii-general/33407-cannibalism-bougainville.html

    The link above just talks about the natives of some Pacific Islands doing it, on 5 posts no mention of the Japanese + participating in this Horrific act.

    Therefore two completely different Threads and discussion.
     
  13. Falcon Jun

    Falcon Jun Ace

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    Good point, brndirt1. It's a horrific subject yet you were still able to provide a context for it.
    A few years ago, I've personally come across one instance of this as a journalist and I don't want to repeat that experience. If it''s not easy for us, I can't imagine what those POWs who survived such an experience had to endure during such dark days in their lives.
     
  14. brndirt1

    brndirt1 Saddle Tramp

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    I think that the cultural differences between the Japanese and "western" thought are well exemplified by the case of Issei Sagawa.

    In 1981 he lured a Dutch girl (Renée Hartevelt), and fellow student at the French Sorbonne University to his place, killed her; and consumed parts of her.

    He was apprehended, but was freed using his father’s money for good legal help, and is now a minor celebrity in Japan who even has (or had) a job as a "food critic".
     
  15. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Good Ol' Boy Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    This forum will be better served by its members if they do not use Carlos Whitlock Porter as a reference for anything. He is a known, convicted Holocaust denier.

    Whether this was intentional or not, I am giving you the benefit of the doubt. Please use more care in selecting websites to support your discussion.
     
  16. Spaniard

    Spaniard New Member

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    Had no Clue No problem I removed, his name from the post, that kind of Garbage is not even worthy of mention.

    And however thinks on this site that I would support that type of individual Think again. And Since I don't know many of these Individuals and the so many sites that are full of these Nut jobs please inform me and I'll gladly remove faster then the wind.;)

    Thank you for the Heads-Up JW!
     
  17. SonOfStone

    SonOfStone Member

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  18. Chu 2

    Chu 2 recruit

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    My father fought on Leyte and Luzon w/the 511PIR (H Co)/11th AB. He and a number of his
    friends I have met at reunions over the years have related stories about finding GI bodies
    that had been cannabalized. My dad's information is confined to Leyte as he was seriously
    wounded fairly early at Nicholls Field during the battle for Manila.
     

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