Friday, April 13, 2007

LAST COMMAND POST

Outside the last command post THE LAST DAYS OF WWII ON SAIPAN
As the war was drawing toward the final weeks and days of the war the Japanese were pushed to the northern end of the island, there they established the "last command post" also nearby were the suicide cliffs and the banzai cliffs places of mass suicides. Following are some excerpts from a historian...... History..The island was garrisoned by Japanese Lt. General Saito's 30,000 troops. The story of the defense of Saipan was a sad chapter of fighting yet to come in later battles, with fanatical military defense and deaths of civilians. Lt. General Saito and Navy Admiral Nagumo committed heri-kari in a cave on July 9, 1944, the day the island was declared officially secured by the US forces.
Inside the last command post
The following is some more history of the war.......American Landing US Marines landed on June 15, 1944. The island was the first objective of the 2nd and 4th Marines Divisions of the 5th Amphibious Corps. The Army's 27th Infantry Division was in reserve. 20,000 US Troops went ashore on the south of the island, under heavy Japanese fire. There were approximate 20,000 men in each division for a total of approximate 70,000 if you include such outfits as ship board marines thrown into the fight and such elements as the 29th Marines also known as the Bastard Battalion. They went ashore on D-Day 6/15/44 and by the end of the battle, there were 3,500 US casualties. Several Japanese counter attacks and Banzai charges bloodied the US forces as they fought their way to the north The civilian population of Saipan committed mass suicide by jumping off cliffs at Marpi Point or committing suicide with hand grenades in caves. An estimated 22,000 civilians died in the battle. The Japanese committed suicide at at least two different locations on the north end of the island Suicide cliffs and Banzai cliffs. The Last Command Post is in a cave just below high cliffs. General Yoshitsugo Saito ordered his men to take seven lives for the emperor, then committed harakiri. Today, there is a memorial and several relics including a Type 95 Ha Go and other guns. The Okinawa Peace Memorial is nearby...........These remaining caves, tunnels, guns and memorials are a must to visit, you can still feel the desperation surrounding you like ghost and solemn is the only word. So there you have it and here we go...Now you have a very nice day......GED......

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