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Shinshū Fumetsu Special Attack Squadron Monument
Setagaya City, Tōkyō Prefecture

After the Emperor's announcement of the war's end, ten Japanese Army pilots in the Shinshū Fumetsu Special Attack Squadron based in Manchuria made a suicide attack on a group of Soviet tanks. Shinshū Fumetsu means "immortal divine land" and refers to Japan.

The Shinshū Fumetsu Special Attack Squadron Monument, erected in 1967, stands on the grounds of Setagaya Kannon Temple, the location of two Tokkō (Special Attack) Peace Kannon [1] statues and the Tenzan Corps Monument.

The monument has the following inscription that briefly describes the history of the Shinshū Fumetsu Special Attack Squadron:

On August 15, 1945, the end of World War II was realized as a result of Japan's defeat. However, after the war's end with Japan defeated and far from the country's mountains and rivers, at 2 p.m. on August 19, ten young officers who belonged to the Manchurian Detachment Unit 16675 under the command of Second Lieutenant Imada became departed spirits in defense of their country as they recognized that living was in vain. If they lived, they would have died. Moreover, they did not want to hand over to the Soviet Army their aircraft, which were valuable weapons. Second Lieutenant Tanifuji put his new wife, who he had just married, into his plane. They took off from Dahushan Airfield toward a group of Soviet tanks stationed near Chifeng that Warrant Officer Ninomiya had scouted out the previous day. Everyone crashed into the aforementioned tanks, killing themselves. Therefore, considering the nobility of their spirit of self-sacrifice, we erect this monument here to honor their heroic feat, and we pray that the spirits of these war dead may rest in peace forever.

Army First Lieutenant Tatsuo Imada, Hiroshima
First Lieutenant Iyoji Baba, Yamagata
First Lieutenant Teruo Iwasa, Hokkaidō
First Lieutenant Iwao Ōkura, Hokkaidō
First Lieutenant Tetsuo Tanifuji, Aomori
First Lieutenant Kōji Kitajima, Tōkyō
First Lieutenant Shinji Miyakawa, Tōkyō
First Lieutenant Toshikazu Hino, Hyōgo
First Lieutenant Itsuo Hatano, Hiroshima
Second Lieutenant Kiyoshi Ninomiya, Shizuoka

May 1967
Erected by Shinshū Fumetsu Special Attack Squadron Memorial Association

The listing of names above shows the men's ranks after their deaths, when they received a one rank promotion. The Japanese military typically granted a promotion of two ranks for men who died in a special attack (tokko), but this operation was not an official tokko mission since it took place after the Emperor's announcement of the war's end.

The Shinshū Fumetsu Special Attack Squadron used Type 2 Advanced Trainers and Type 98 Direct Co-operation Planes to make their attack on the Soviet tanks [2].

Notes

1. A Kannon is the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy.

2. Osuo 2005, 177.

Source Cited

Osuo, Kazuhiko. 2005. Tokubetsu kōgekitai no kiroku (rikugun hen) (Record of special attack corps (Army)). Tōkyō: Kōjinsha.


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