The long road to Tokyo: Japanese aggression in China, Southeast Asia, and the South Pacific, with special attention to books about the Rape of Nanking, Japanese fighter planes and pilots, the Burma campaign, and the Hiroshima bomb

Flying Tigers
revised and updated

WARBIRD HOME > JAPAN

JAPAN AT WAR, 1931-1945

Thanks to Marty Irons, I've been able to update the fate of Marine 1st Lt Edward Croker (formerly listed as Crocker) on the grisly list of the Unlucky Prisoners of Rabaul. Flying a a TBF Avenger against Balle island on 16 September 1943, Croker's plane was damaged. He bailed out, was captured, and was sent to the hellhole of Rabaul, where he was murdered the following year. Bypassed by the Allies, Balle postwar proved to be itself a hellhole, containing the graves of nearly 500 British POWs who had been forced to work on the island's airfield.

Japanese navy operations in the Indies Leiden University Press in the Netherlands has released a Creative Commons PDF of The Operations of the Navy in the Dutch East Indies and the Bay of Bengal which you should grab if you have an interest in Japanese military operations in 1941-1942. In print, the book amounts to 785 pages and is priced accordingly, so free-to-download is a great opportunity. The publisher describes the content as follows:

"Between 1966 and 1980, the War History Office of the National Defense College of Japan ... published the 102-volume Senshi Sosho (War History Series). These volumes give a detailed account of the operations of the Imperial Japanese Army and ... Navy during the Second World War. The present volume ... describes the Japanese Navy's role in the campaign to gain control over the Indonesian archipelago - at that time the largest transoceanic landing operation in the military history of the world. It includes, among others, the first complete Japanese analysis of the Battle of the Java Sea, a much-debated battle that ended disastrously for the Allies and opened the way to Java for the Japanese."

Also available as a free download is The Invasion of the Dutch East Indies, detailing the Imperial Army's operations in the Indies.

I used two of the Senshi Sosho volumes in writing my history of the Flying Tigers. The one on China in the early years of the war was very good. The one covering the Battle of Burma was magnificent, and later enabled me to write Rising Sun Over Burma as a stand-alone ebook and a major part of Tales of the Flying Tigers. Blue skies! -- Dan Ford

Japan's long war:

Nomonhan (Japan v. Russia, 1939)
Russian aircraft losses at Nomonhan
Elusive target: Bombing Japan from China (Richard Dunn)
Did U.S. leaders know that war was coming?
A guest of the Japanese in the Dutch Indies (Arie Biemond)
"New Guinea was my introduction to war" (anonymous)
Ketsu-go (waiting for the Americans, summer 1945)
Olympic vs. Ketsu-go (the invasion that didn't happen)
Japan's Longest Day: how Japan surrendered
The U.S. Navy arrives in Tokyo Bay, August 1945
Did Japanese soldiers fight for the Vietminh?

The Hiroshima files:

Why Truman dropped the bomb (Richard Frank)
Why Truman dropped the bomb II (Wilson Miscamble)
Little Boy vs Operation Olympic (an internet debate)
How many died at Hiroshima?--counting the uncountable
What was the yield of the Hiroshima bomb?
Was there a third bomb? What was its target?
Been down that lonely road: NASM confronts Enola Gay
Hiroshima and the end of the war--a reading list

Flying Tigers

The Japanese Army Air Force files:

Notes on the Japanese Army Air Force
The decision to move south (Japan v. the West, 1941)
Mr. Suzuki recalls the Flying Tigers (December 1941)
Lucky Sevens? life and death of the 77th Sentai (Richard Dunn)
JAAF deployments against Rangoon, December-March (maps)
Japanese army aircraft met by the AVG
Joe Baugher's Hayabusa files
Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa ("Oscar") armament (Richard Dunn)
About those Nakajima Ki-43 machineguns
Regimental song of the 64th Sentai (video)
Japanese army aces and their victory claims
JAAF fighter pilots lost in China-Burma area, 1941-42
Ki-45 Toryu (Dragon Slayer, aka Nick)

Why's a Zero?

Why's a Zero? and a primer on the Japanese calendar
Japanese warplane names and designations (Osamu Tagaya)
Allied code-names in perspective (Richard Dunn)
Sussing out the 'Chengdu Zero'
Zeros over China, 1941-1942 (Ben Schapiro)
Unraveling the Zero's performance data (Richard Dunn)
'Never dog fight the Zero' (the San Diego evaluations)
A conversation with Saburo Sakai and a scrap of his scarf
'Winged Samurai': rethinking the Sakai myths
An interview with another Zero pilot

Kamikaze, cannibals, & other mysteries:

Bushido: the Japanese Field Service Code, 1941
'Be as one already dead' (Ruth Benedict)
The soldier who cut up living prisoners (London Times)
The butchered bodies of New Guinea (graphic photos)
The Rape of Nanking: Japan in denial
Meet Colonel Tsuji, genius and cannibal
Outram Road Prison, Singapore
Done to death: the unlucky prisoners of Rabaul
The man who didn't shoot down Pappy Boyington
Why the kamikaze volunteered (Yasuho Izawa)
A Japanese army pilot trains to die
'Crashing bodily into a target is not easy' (the how-to manual)
'I will be waiting for you at Yasukuni Shrine'
'Annihilate them all' (the order to murder PWs)

Books & stuff:

Japan at War--book reviews on this site
The webmaster's picks: 10 books worth reading
Books about Japanese aircraft and aces

Sign up for the newsletter

Once or twice a month, I send out an email newsletter about my books and the subjects covered in them, most often about military aviation and the wars of the past hundred years. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Question? Comment? Newsletter? Send me an email. Blue skies! -- Dan Ford

Cowboy: interpreter, warlord, one more casualty

Warbird's Forum: Front page | Flying Tigers | Chinese Air Force | Japan at War | Brewster Buffalo | Flying Wing | Vietnam | War in the Modern World | The Spadguys Speak | Bluie West One | Poland: War & Exile

Bookshelf | Book reviews | Question? | Message board | Google us | Website & webmaster | Site map

Other sites: Daniel Ford's Books | Flying Tigers: the history | Facebook | Piper Cub Forum | Raintree County | Reading Proust | Sailboat Seal

Posted January 2019. Websites ©1997-2019 Daniel Ford. All rights reserved.