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Old 02-24-2011, 08:36 AM
 
Location: Harrison, OH
910 posts, read 1,489,379 times
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This is something I've recently started researching. I find it very interesting how long some Japanese soldiers held out long after the official end of WWII. It truly goes to show how deeply they embraced their culture of not surrendering and holding out even after the war was long since over and lost. It also makes me wonder what would have happened if a land invasion would have been done instead of the atom bombs being used.

Links to a few of the famous holdouts:

Japanese holdout - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Chronology of Japanese Holdouts
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Old 02-24-2011, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
964 posts, read 2,437,107 times
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I read the book on Onoda. Very interesting. Imagine living for 29 years in the jungle. The first thing he ate other than what he caught or stole was a can of pork and beans. He hadn't eaten sugar in 29 years.
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:01 AM
 
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I remember Private Teruo Nakamura surrenduring when I was a kid. There was a lot about these guys back then- obviously because they were still on "active duty" so to speak. Some TV shows even started using the theme for plots- the Six Million Dollar Man was one.

Its a fascinating subject. Almost like the Japanese counterpart to Nazis hiding in South America, but with obvious differences. Instances where WWII had not quite ended.
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Old 02-25-2011, 06:34 PM
 
48,508 posts, read 87,729,894 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jon1987 View Post
This is something I've recently started researching. I find it very interesting how long some Japanese soldiers held out long after the official end of WWII. It truly goes to show how deeply they embraced their culture of not surrendering and holding out even after the war was long since over and lost. It also makes me wonder what would have happened if a land invasion would have been done instead of the atom bombs being used.

Links to a few of the famous holdouts:

Japanese holdout - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Chronology of Japanese Holdouts
One alos has to realise how isolated i knowig anyhting about the enemy other than what they were told all japnaese where. Look at the actions of civilians says alot. I amny cases the reacvtion was from being told that americans would rape and kill their women etc. Loki g at the rape of Chun King; they might have reasonably assumed that other would act has they had as far as soldiers go.
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Old 02-26-2011, 09:17 AM
Status: "Uncomfortably numb" (set 9 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
64,867 posts, read 61,145,580 times
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I remember reading about some of these instances when I was a kid. They also got absorbed into pop culture like Gilligan's Island, etc, as story lines.

EDIT: Just went back and read the Wikipedia article, which mentioned Gilligan's Island, lol.
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Old 02-27-2011, 11:54 PM
Status: "Write me in for POTUS" (set 16 days ago)
 
Location: Near Manito
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Living in Japan as I do, it is not difficult to comprehend the mentality of those soldiers. I know plenty of people here in various occupations who, had they not received instructions to the contrary, would continue doing their jobs even if the world came to an end around them.

Although we may make light of this trait, it is what has made Japanese technology the world standard in many fields, including automobiles, optical equipment, musical instruments, watchmaking, and many other areas which require almost fanatical attention to detail and refusal to take shortcuts.

I remember back in the 1970s, when Japan first started to dominate automaking, I asked a friend how he could possibly buy one of those little silly cars instead of a big ole Chevy or Ford. He said this: "Who would you rather have building your car? Some guy in Detroit, who smokes a joint at lunchtime and comes back to work wearing headphones and listening to R&B, or some little guy in Nagoya, wearing a clean, pressed uniform, and worried sick that the three bolts he has to fasten might be loose?" I had to admit he had a point...
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:48 AM
 
12,694 posts, read 18,429,615 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeledaf View Post
Living in Japan as I do, it is not difficult to comprehend the mentality of those soldiers. I know plenty of people here in various occupations who, had they not received instructions to the contrary, would continue doing their jobs even if the world came to an end around them.

Although we may make light of this trait, it is what has made Japanese technology the world standard in many fields, including automobiles, optical equipment, musical instruments, watchmaking, and many other areas which require almost fanatical attention to detail and refusal to take shortcuts.

I remember back in the 1970s, when Japan first started to dominate automaking, I asked a friend how he could possibly buy one of those little silly cars instead of a big ole Chevy or Ford. He said this: "Who would you rather have building your car? Some guy in Detroit, who smokes a joint at lunchtime and comes back to work wearing headphones and listening to R&B, or some little guy in Nagoya, wearing a clean, pressed uniform, and worried sick that the three bolts he has to fasten might be loose?" I had to admit he had a point...
Well, like most things, there are positive and negative aspects. You gave an example of the positive. The negative is that you can end up on island for 28 years fighting a war that has long ended.
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Old 02-28-2011, 08:49 AM
 
13,703 posts, read 19,844,266 times
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I was in Okinowa as a kid in the late 70s and even then they were talking about possibly Japanese holdouts up in the hills.

By the way I am going to take this time to recommend a book about the WW2 Pacific theather from a combat soldiers perspective "With the Old Breed" by E.B. Sledge. Show's just how fanatical and ruthless the Japanese soldier was and does not hesitate to get into the aspect of the absolute hatred between the two opposing forces for each other, as well as the inhuman living conditions of jungle and coral island warfare (elements missing from the European theater).
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Old 03-04-2011, 07:30 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,017 posts, read 18,722,705 times
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Default Second the motion on Sledge, and add one more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd714 View Post
I was in Okinowa as a kid in the late 70s and even then they were talking about possibly Japanese holdouts up in the hills.

By the way I am going to take this time to recommend a book about the WW2 Pacific theather from a combat soldiers perspective "With the Old Breed" by E.B. Sledge. Show's just how fanatical and ruthless the Japanese soldier was and does not hesitate to get into the aspect of the absolute hatred between the two opposing forces for each other, as well as the inhuman living conditions of jungle and coral island warfare (elements missing from the European theater).
Yes, "With the Old Breed" ranks right up there among the best World War II memoirs by a front-line combatant. Later in life, Sledge wrote a follow-up entitled "China Marine". It's a slim little volume which tells of his experiences with his Marine unit in China following the Japanese surrender. It's a fascinating and little-known story; I hadn't even known we had sent ground troops into China to keep order and to repatriate Japanese forces who were stuck there.
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Old 03-04-2011, 09:04 AM
Status: "Uncomfortably numb" (set 9 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
64,867 posts, read 61,145,580 times
Reputation: 79042
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeledaf View Post
Living in Japan as I do, it is not difficult to comprehend the mentality of those soldiers. I know plenty of people here in various occupations who, had they not received instructions to the contrary, would continue doing their jobs even if the world came to an end around them.

Although we may make light of this trait, it is what has made Japanese technology the world standard in many fields, including automobiles, optical equipment, musical instruments, watchmaking, and many other areas which require almost fanatical attention to detail and refusal to take shortcuts.

I remember back in the 1970s, when Japan first started to dominate automaking, I asked a friend how he could possibly buy one of those little silly cars instead of a big ole Chevy or Ford. He said this: "Who would you rather have building your car? Some guy in Detroit, who smokes a joint at lunchtime and comes back to work wearing headphones and listening to R&B, or some little guy in Nagoya, wearing a clean, pressed uniform, and worried sick that the three bolts he has to fasten might be loose?" I had to admit he had a point...
Interesting statement that sparked a memory.

A bomb went off in the basement of the World Trade Center on 2/26/1993. The smoke ran up the staircases like chimneys, and it became very difficult to breathe. If any of you recall this bombing, you will remember the TV shots of us coming out of the buildings with our faces blackened.

Some people in the stairwells who were having difficulty breathing made stop-offs on different floors, in some cases breaking windows to let in fresh air. A group from my floor did this on a floor where a Japanese bank was located. They reported later that all the while refugees from higher floors were stopping there to get air, the Japanese remained at their desks, busily working on their computers.
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