The Sino-Japanese War(Campaigns in detail)

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The Sino-Japanese War(Campaigns in detail)

Postby tigre » 22 Jan 2006 08:15

Due to the excellent information in this topic I have slightly changed the title--Moderator


Hello to all, I'll start to post something about this topic; I hope all of you enjoy it (specially asiaticus)

THE SINO-JAPANESE WAR
(To 1 March 1938)

When the present undeclared conflict broke out at the Marco Polo Bridge 17 July 1937, Japanese staff officers predicted that it would be over by Christmas. After several months of fighting, the Chinese Army has been defeated and pursued hundreds of miles and the Japanese have spent Christmas in the enemy’s capital. The principal ports, railways and sources of revenue are in Japanese hands (Figure 1), yet Japan’s Prime Minister speaks of the successful campaign as a prologue and warns his people that the real war is yet to begin. Japan is preparing for a war of long duration and the army and navy have demanded an appropriation of $1,200,000,000, the highest in Japanese history.
It will be recalled that after a victorious drive from Shanghai, the Japanese forces captured Nanking, the capital of the Central Government on 13 December 1937. On 12 December, the U.S.S. Panay was sunk in the Yangtze River by Japanese aircraft while anchored 12 miles above Nanking. After two weeks of diplomatic tension, the United States accepted the Japanese note of apology for the attack, in which it was also promised that full reparation would be made and that specific measures would be taken to avoid further injury to American lives, property and interests.
During December Japan set up a puppet Chinese Government at Peiping and the naval blockade was extended to Tsingtao.

Regards. Tigre.
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Postby tigre » 22 Jan 2006 08:29

A glance at the map shows that between the territories conquered by Japan in North and Central China, lies a corridor about 190 miles wide, separating the Northern and Southern armies, which is still held by the Chinese. Its nerve center is Suchow, railway junction of lines running from north to south and from east to west. With the corridor removed, the Japanese would be able to resume rail service between conquered Peiping, Nanking and Shanghai.
They would also be in a good position to thrust westward, along the Lunghai railway, into the heart of China. Conquest of the Lunghai corridor would complete the occupation of the five northern provinces and give Japan full command of the Chinese seacoast as far south as Shanghai.
The campaign started as a concentrated drive against Suchow from north and south. Suddenly dropping Suchow as their main objective, the Japanese armies split into several columns and began to move on points between that rail junction and Chenghow, another rail junction two hundred miles west. Capture of Suchow alone wouId have left the Chinese a line of retreat westward, so the purpose of these Japanese maneuvers is to cut off Chiang Kai-Shek’s best troops from their source of supplies at Hankow. Reports indicate that the Japanese drive is spreading still farther to the west and is now aimed at the great bend of the Yellow River, where the Provinces of Shansi, Shensi and Honan are joined, Tungkwan, vital station on the Lunghai railway, gateway to S!]ansi ancl stronghold of the bitterly anti-Japanese Chinese Communists also lies directly south of the bend.
Judging from these maneuvers, it appears that the Japanese strategical plan now aims at crushing the Chinese armies in a vise-like movement from the north and south.
The immediate Japanese objective seems to be to effect a union of their northern and southern armies at Kweiten, cut off railroad communications and force the Chinese to retreat inland.
Japanese forces, moving down from Suchow and up from the Yangtze valley have been hammering for weeks against this corridor. It is reported that they are opposed by about 400.000 Chinese troops, commanded personally by Chiang Kai-Shek.
Of the many .Japanese thrusts seeking to cut the Lunghai railway, backbone of the Chinese military position, the one in Shansi Province alone (northwest of Suehow) has been making real progress. They have succeeded in capturing Sinsiang and Fengku, ten miles north of the Yellow River and only sixteen miles from Kaifeng, capital of Honan Province. A Japanese attempt to cross the Yellow River is to be expected very soon.
Below Suchow, Japanese troops which captured Nanking, after a brief period of rest, resumed the march north in two main lines: The eastern column along the Grand Canal and the western column along the Tientsin-Pukow railroad. Bad weather and stubborn resistance slowed up the advance, but the Japanese have succeeded in capturing Pengpn. However, Chinese engineers blew up dikes and levees along the Hwai (misty) River and the flood bogged down the ,Japanese columns advancing northward from Nanking toward Suchow, leaving still a gap of over 150 miles between the Pengpu column and the Japanese in Southern Shantung. (Figure 1.) In Gentral Anhwei Province, Chinese and Japanese are deadlocked in a series of bitter engagements with Japanese unable to make an appreciable advance north of the Hwai’ River.
Japanese columns have captured Wuhu, up the Yangtze from Nanking, but have been unable to advance because Chinese guerrilla bands have harassed them continually.
Guerrillas have been active in the entire Hangchow—Nanking—Shanghai triangle, holding up supply shipments and forcing Japanese to use part of their forces to garrison communication lines.
Recall of three of the highest Japanese commanders was announced 23 February following reports of a sharp Japanese setback in the front north of Nanking. General Shunroku Hata, inspector of military education in Japan has stepped into the shoes of General Iwane Matsui as commander-in-chief of the Japanese forces in the Shanghai-Nanking area, and faces the task of reorganizing Japanese Central China forces to provide fresh impetus for drives
against the vital I,unghai corridor. General Matsui was reculled, according to reports- because of the success of Chinese counterattacks in the Hwai River area, breaches of discipline in the Japanese Army and friction with other nations; The other two high officers ordered back to Tokyo were: Lieutenant General Prince Yashuhiko Asaka, commander of Japanese expeditionary forces and Lieutenant General Heisuke Yanagawa, commander of the Hangchow landing force.

Source: The Sino-Japanese War. Military Review, march 1938.
Regards. Tigre.

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Re: Sino Japanese War.

Postby asiaticus » 25 Jan 2006 02:55

Looking forward to it, tigre. Your article about the Yangtze campaign provoked a lot if interest and turned up a lot of info.

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Sino Japanese War

Postby tigre » 25 Jan 2006 05:17

Hello asiaticus, glad to greet you. Yes I almost neglected this war and this is a mistake because the Sino-japanese conflict really was a drainage of the japanese's power (mainly men) and when Japan declared the state of war with USA (and allies), they fought in two (I think several) fronts. Against the bigest population of the world (human resources) and the first economy of the world (means); to much for anyone. Regards. Tigre.

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THE BATTLE OF TAIERCHWANG

Postby tigre » 11 Feb 2006 13:00

Hello to all greetings from Argentina, a little more.

THE BATTLE OF TAIERCHWANG.

We followed the Japanese operations to the Yellow River line and the campaign for the capture of Suchow, junction point of the Lunghai and Tsin-Pu lines. It will be recalled that the first and main attempt of Japanese strategy was the capture of Suchow by simultaneous advances from the north and from the south. This broadened out to an even better conceived plan — capture of Chengchow and of Puchow in Western Shansi, and then a pincer-like advance on Suchow to cut off and annihilate the Chinese Armies in Shantung province.

This campaign started on January 26, when the Japanese launched their general offensive, with the object of occupying the entire Tientsin-Pukow line; the campaign bogged down and at the end of three months the central Japanese armies operating northward from the “Nanking area were still about eighty miles from Suchow and had been stopped at the Hwai River. The drive from the north was also halted by Chinese guerrilla tactics and lack of sufficient men to defeat the Chinese forces. The gradual slowing of the Japanese advance culminated on April 6th, when the Japanese met their first real reverse at Taierchwang, an ancient brick-walled settlement on the banks of China’s Grand Canal.

On 14 March the Chinese high command learned of the Japanese general offensive southward along the Tsientsin-Pukow railway and, unable to cope with the enemy’s mechanized frontal attack, shifted large forces eastward to strengthen the Chinese right flank, leaving a comparatively small force to delay the Japanese advance until the latter’s lines of communication became overextended, permitting Chinese flanking attacks from the east.

On 6 April the Chinese under General Li Tsung-jen, one of the leading strategists of the National Revolution of 1926 and 1927, launched a counteroffensive against the weak Japanese left flank and advancing westward encircled the Japanese forces at Taierchwang. Led by the 31st Division, one of the Chinese crack units, the battle raged all day and through the night with about 50,000 Japanese engaging a force at least two or three times that number. The Japanese were finally smothered by weight of numbers and compelled to retreat, leaving behind many tanks for which they had no fuel and artillery for which they had no shells, with the victorious Chinese pursuing them to the gates of Yishien, where they were finally stopped by a Japanese stonewall defense.

The Japanese losses at Taierchwang were estimated at between 7,000 to 10,000 killed and 20,000 wounded, while the Chinese losses were two or three times as large.
The Chinese victory smashed Japan’s unbroken series of victories for a period of over 44 years and punctured the myth of invincibility of the Japanese armies. It was also China’s first great victory of arms.

Source: The Sino-Japanese War. Military Review, jun 1938.

Cheers. Tigre
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Map of Taierchwang battle

Postby asiaticus » 14 Feb 2006 03:26

Saw this map on the CDF history forum, of the battle in the immediate area of the city of Taierchwang:

Maybe someone could translate some of the Chinese in this.
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Map of Taierchwang battle

Postby tigre » 14 Feb 2006 04:54

Hello asiaticus glad to greet you, despite the language I can appreciate that the chinese 30 and 31 ID (red) and the japanese 10 and 50 ID (green?) were involved in the fight. Cheers. Tigre.

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Forces involved in the battle

Postby asiaticus » 18 Feb 2006 19:50

My understanding is the defenders of the city were :

- 2nd Army Group - Sun Lien-chung - Defending Tai Er Zhang
-- 30th Corps - Tien Chen-nan
--- 30th Divison - Chang Cing-chao
--- 31st Divison - Chih Feng-cheng
-- 42nd Corps - Feng An-pang
--- 27th Division - Huang Chiao-sung[r]
--- 44th Division - Wu Peng-chu

- 20th Army - Tang En-po - counterattacked from the north of Tai er Zhang to cut off 10th Div.
-- 52nd Corps - Kuan Lin-cheng
--- 2nd Division - Cheng Tung-kuo[r]
--- 25th Division - Chang Yao-ming[r]
-- 85th Corps - Wang Chung-lien
--- 4th Division - Chen Ta-ching[r]
--- 89th Division - Division - Hsueh-chung[r]
-- 110th Division - Chang Chen

[r] reorganized Divisions


Japanese attackers were:

- 10th Division - Rinsuke Isoya
--8th Infantry Brigade
---39th Infantry Regiment
---40th Infantry Regiment
--33rd Infantry Brigade
---10th Infantry Regiment
---63rd Infantry Regiment
--10th Field Artillery Regiment
--10th Cavalry Regiment
--10th Engineer Regiment
--10th Transport Regiment
--? Tank Regiment(about 100 armor cars and tanks)*

* 10th and 12th, independent light armored car squadrons were attached to the Japanese 2nd Army that commanded 5th and 10th Divisions. I have no listing for a Tank Regiment with this Army but the 1st Army had two tank regiments thay could have lent to the operation:

--1st Tank Regiment – Col. Baba
--2nd Tank Regiment - ?

There was no 50th Division in China at this time, so I dont know what that character means up there on the map. However there was a 5th Division involved in a battle at Linyi off to the northeast of Taierzhang.

- 5th Division (Square Division) – Gen. Seishiro Itagaki
--9th Infantry Brigade
---11th Infantry Regiment
---41st Infantry Regiment
--21st Infantry Brigade
---21st Infantry Regiment
---42nd Infantry Regiment
--5th Mountain Artillery Regiment
--5th Cavalry Regiment
--5th Engineer Regiment
--5th Transport Regiment


It was defeated by this Chinese force.

- 3rd Army - Pang Pin-hsun - defending Lin-yi
-- 40th Corps - Pang Pin-hsun(concurrent)
--- 39th Division - Ma Fa-wu

-- 59th Corps - Chang Tse-chung (concurrent) reinforced Lin-yi from 27th Army, attacked from the north.
--- 38th Division - Huang Wei-kang
--- 180th Division - Liu Chen-san
--- 9th Division - Chang Teh-shun[g]
--- 13th Cav. Brigade - Yao Ching-chuan

[g] German trained reorganized Divisions

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A possible unit to to explain the 50th unit on the map

Postby asiaticus » 18 Feb 2006 20:06

That 50th unit on the map could be maybe this 5th Independant Mixed brigade that joined 2nd army in March 1938:

- 5th Independent Mixed Brigade
--16th Independent infantry battalion
--17th Independent infantry battalion
--18th Independent infantry battalion
--19th Independent infantry battalion
--20th Independent infantry battalion
--Independent artillery troops
--Independent labor troops
--Signal Communication Unit

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Forces involved in the battle

Postby tigre » 18 Feb 2006 21:37

Hello asiaticus, good job; a very detailed OOB indeed. Cheers. Tigre.

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Postby Windward » 19 Feb 2006 08:30

a rough translation of the map

regards
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Rough translation

Postby tigre » 19 Feb 2006 13:07

Hello Windward and thank you. So, we have a mistery with the 50 ID after all. Regards. Tigre.

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Thanks Windward

Postby asiaticus » 19 Feb 2006 18:52

Thanks for the translation Windward. That clears up a few questions for me.

I wonder what unit that might be if its not the 50th Division. I'm pretty sure after looking at my info that there never was a 50th Division in China at all ever, and certainly not in 1938.

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Postby Henry » 19 Feb 2006 23:00

Hi,

The Japanese 50th division was formed in May 1944 in Formosa. It never left the Island.

Henry

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Postby Windward » 20 Feb 2006 03:54

I guess the drawer of that map mixed up "5th" and "50th". :lol:


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