2 Lt. Gen. Ryozo Sakuma, who became Chief of Staff of the Secund Area Army in December 1944, expressed his opinion concerning General MacArthur's tactics in the following words : " I think that they were excellent tactics. I say this without prejudice. If any other plans had been used, the Americans would have had a very difficult time.. . . What the Americans did, as a whole, in the entire operation was . . . When General MacArthur retreated from our advance in the Philippines, he was not relieved as. Commander-in-Chief of the area. . . . The fact that General MacArthur was kept at his post made it possible for him to conduct this campaign of retaking the Philippines as he saw best." Interrogations Files, G-2 Historical Section, GHQ, FEC.
5 Typical of air reconnaissance reports are the following: " Momote and Lorengau strips appeared unserviceable. Nil activity. Nil new aircraft. Nil unusual signs of activity in entire Admiralty Islands." GHQ, SWPA, Situation Report No. 54/44, 23 Feb 44. "Aircraft flew low but nil A/A fire encountered. Nil signs of enemy activity. The island [Lorengau] appears deserted." Ibid., No. 55/44 24 Feb 44. " No signs of enemy activity on Manus and Los Negros Islands. All crews claim these islands have been evacuated. Grass growing thickly on Momote and Lorengau strips. Runways unserviceable, and badly pitted. No A/A fire, even at low altitude. (The B-25's flew over Momote strip at 20 feet)." Ibid., No. 56/44, 25 Feb 44. "Both Lorengau and Momote strips are unserviceable. The wrecked aircraft and trucks on Momote are untouched and bomb craters still unfilled. Villages on Los Negros Island appeared deserted and'roads have not been used lately. Damage in Lorengau t0w.n has not been repaired. No activity of any kind observed." Ibid., No. 57/44, 26 Feb 44.
7 G-2, GHQ, SWPA, Daily Summary No. 695, 15/16 Feb 4 contained the following precise listing of enemy units, almost two weeks in advance of the actual landing ; compare these data with the negative reports of flight reconnaissance on 23-25 February. (See footnote 5 supra).
9 Ibid., No. 706, 26/27 Feb 4. Several days previously G-2 had also reported on the Admiralties: "A situation similar to Madang is encountered here in that no enemy activity is apparent. This is regarded as a case of passive antiaircraft defense necessitated by dwindling reserve ammunition. Other intelligence indicates that the enemy plans to defend the Admiralties with the forces at present located there." Ibid., No. 704, 24/25 Feb 4.
13 A desperate night counterattack of this kind had been forecast as one of the enemy's capabilities in the G-2 Daily Summary of 28/29 February 1944, viz: "Enemy capabilities are a) surreptitious withdrawal from the Admiralties via small craft, b) typical desperate counter-attack, probably at night."
19 GHQ, SWPA, Communique No. 726, 5 Apr 44. The Japanese described the effect of the Allied raids in their official report: " From the end of March, the enemy air attacks gradually intensified. Our air power was rapidly diminished as a result of the enemy attacks on 30-31 March and 3 April. The rise and fall of the fighting power of our fighter units exerted a decisive influence upon the future operations in the New Guinea Area. It also played a decisive role in the supply of the areas east of Hollandia and the operation of the bases in Western New Guinea." Japanese First Demobilization Bureau Report, Southeast Area Operations Record, Part III: Eighteenth Army Operations, Vol III, p. 36.
21 The effectiveness of these deceptive measures was clearly proved by later evidence. As late as 21 April, one day before the Allied landings at Hollandia and Aitape, the Japanese estimated enemy intentions as follows: ''The signs of an enemy plan to make a new landing in the New Guinea area . . . are clear. The probability of a landing between Madang and Hansa or on the Karkar Islands is estimated to be greatest.
23 The importance of the time element as a decisive factor in the Hollandia invasion is emphasized in the following statements by Japanese commanders who served in western New Guinea. " The Allied invasion of Hollandia and Aitape was a complete surprise to us," said Lt. Gen. Jo Iimura, Commander of the Second Area Army. " Although, after considering the past operational tactits of the enemy, we were confident that the Allies would eventually attack Hollandia, we rather believed they would attempt to acquire an important position somewhere east of Aitape, prior to an invasion of either Aitape or Hollandia. Because we misjudged the time of the Allied invasion on Hollandia and Aitape, we were neither able to reinforce nor send war supplies to their defending units." According to Lt. Col. Nobuo Kitamori, Staff Officer of the Second Area Army, the attack on Hollandia " was not a complete surprise in that we expected the enemy to come some time or other because it was such an important place. However, we did not think that the attack would come when it did. The morning that we found out that the Allies were going to come to Hollandia, they were already in the harbor with their transports and battleships. In that sense it certainly was a surprise." Colonel Kazuo Horiba, Staff Officer of the Southern Army, offered the following opinion: "It was a surprise attack as far as operations go, but not so strategically. We had planned on the fact the enemy was coming, but it was a surprise when the enemy came when he did, far before the time we expected and our defense preparations were not completed." Interrogation Files, G-2 Historical Section, GHQ, FEC.
26 According to the Japanese official report on the war, there were approximately 14,600 personnel in the Hollandia Area: 6,600 Eighteenth Army ; 7,000 Fourth Air Army; 1,000 Navy. About go percent of these troops were rear area service units including 1,000 hospital patients. Japanese First Demobilization Bureau Report, Southeast Area Operations Record, Part III: Eighteenth Army Operations, Vol III, pp. 47-49.
27 "The Allied seizure of Hollandia indicated the battle of New Guinea was rapidly drawing to a close," said Colonel Kitamori. " We knew that it would only be a matter of time before the Allies would control the air and the waters of New Guinea, thus paving the way for their expected counterlanding on the shores of the Philippines. Its seizure only indicated that defensive preparations in the Philippines would have to be accelerated, and to facilitate this our troops were to stall the enemy in northwestern New Guinea, as well as in the Halmahera group, as long as possible.
37 According to Colonel Kitamori, a plan had been formed immediately after the Allied landing on Biak to regain that important area, utilizing Army-Navy co-operation for the first time in the western New Guinea area. The plan called for a strong naval task force, led by the battleship Musashi and composed of six cruisers and destroyers loaded to the brim with reinforcements, to make a landing behind the Allied positions. " I personally ordered this unit to be sent to Biak." said Col. Kazuo Horiba, former Senior Operations Officer, Second Area Army. " It was the 2nd Amphibious Brigade fresh from Japan. The Fleet got to the Sorong area but could not reach Biak because of the presence of enemy air and naval power, and it had to land at Sorong." Interrogation Files, G-2 Historical Section, GHQ, FEC.
40 The full text of General Adachi's speech may be found in the Japanese First Demobilization Bureau Report, Southeast Area Operations Record, Part III: Eighteenth Army Operations, Vol III, pp. 100-101.
43 Testimony of General Adachi during his trial in Rabaul, AP, World Service, Item 33, Sydney, April 14, 47. With reference to the casualties at Aitape, General Adachi's figures are in close agreement with G-2 reports. Daily Summary No. 887 for 26/27 August 1944 gives a total of 8,502 killed and taken prisoner to that date. This compares favorably with General Adachi's estimate of 10,000 killed, since the conditions of jungle fighting and malnutrition probably accounted for deaths not included in the G-2 report of identified killed.
45 CINCSWPA Radio No. C-15910, to CIS WD, 9 Aug 44, CIS, GHQ, WD 803 (S). This is characteristic of General MacArthur's unvaried concern with the health and safety of his troops. His abhorrence of bloody frontal assaults, of reckless plunging were predicated on his deep wish to reduce or avoid losses. The record of his campaigns is exceptional in this respect.
46 Col. Howard Smith, Public Health Service, on the Staff of USAFFE deserves great credit in this preventive campaign. An expert in tropical medicine and Chief of the Philippine Quarantine Service for many years prior to to the war, Colonel Smith was well known to General MacArthur. The latter's far-sighted planning brought Colonel Smith to his staff at an early date.
47 "The worst enemy of the Japanese Army in the withdrawal from Hollandia was malaria, and it was the major factor in causing much suffering and death during the march. Conditions were such that after a rain storm the men were forced to sleep in wet clothing without the benefit of mosquito netting. Because of the lack of medicine to counteract malaria, large numbers of stragglers fell by the wayside." Japanese First Demobilization Bureau Report, Southeast Area Operations Record, Part III: Eighteenth Army Operations, Vol III, p. 55.