Major-General Kiyotake Kawaguchi

Japan

Major-General Kiyotake Kawaguchi

Major-General Kiyotake Kawaguchi


Major-General Kiyotake Kawaguchi was promoted to rank of Major-General in 1940 and became Commander of the 35th Brigade (previously he had various staff assignments in China)

As commander of 35th Brigade, he participated in Borneo (December 1941), Cebu (March 1942) and Mindanao (April 1942) landings.

He arrived on Guadalcanal in late August 1942, still nominally commander of 35th Brigade but now also having under command three battalions formerly of "Aoba Detachment." He participated in both attacks on "Bloody Ridge" (the main Japanese commander in September assaults, criticized by Colonel Masonobu Tsuji-- a personal enemy since the Phillipines) and virtually relieved of command by Tsuji on the eve of the October attacks.

After that he was dismissed by Lt-General Hyakutake (Commander of the 17th Army) in November 1942 and placed on "unassigned" list in March 1943.

He remained on reserve list until March 1945, when he was reactivated as commander of Tsushima Island fortress zone (the Japanese Army had some massive turrets housing 410mm guns donated by the Navy there to dominate the Tsushima strait).

He was convicted of war crimes and served a prison term from 1946 till 1953 (which is something of a surprise, since the reason he became Tsuji's sworn enemy was his attempt to save the lives of Phillipine supreme court justices Tsuji wanted to execute).


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Copyright Klemen. L. 1999-2000
Forgotten Campaign: The Dutch East Indies Campaign 1941-1942

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