|Died||23 Nov 1942|
Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbaseTomitaro Horii was born in Hyogo prefecture, Japan. He graduated from the Japanese military academy in 1911 and became an infantry officer. During the First Battle of Shanghai in 1932, he was assigned to the headquarters of the Shanghai Expeditionary Army. He commanded the 55th Infantry Group, later renamed the South Seas Force, beginning in 1941, with which group he participated in many landings during Japan's southward expansion. To curb the rampant atrocities being committed by his troops, he issued the "Guide to Soldiers in the South Seas" in late 1941, which consisted of five simple statements:
- Do not needlessly kill or injure the local inhabitants.
- Behavior such as looting and violating women is strictly forbidden.
- Buildings and property in enemy territory must not be burned without permission.
- Scrupulously keep secrets and main security.
- Treat ammunition carefully, and reduce waste to a minimum.
ww2dbaseDuring the New Guinea campaign, Major General Horii achieved the impossible by leading a column of 8,500 men of the 144th Regiment across the Kokoda Trail over the treacherous Owen Stanley mountain range. Even though he achieved surprised and initially drove back the Australian defenders, logistics across the trail broke down, and his troops began to fight on empty stomachs. Mainly because of a change in the overall war situation, Horii was ordered to fall back onto the trail, marching all remaining soldiers back across the Owen Stanley for Buna on the northern coast. He knew it was no easy task to cross the trail once again, but the food situation rendered him without choice even if he did not receive the order to fall back. En route, Horii took a misstep while crossing the Kumusi River and drowned.
ww2dbaseSources: Darkest Hour, Goodbye Darkness, Wikipedia.
Last Major Revision: Feb 2007
Tomitaro Horii Timeline
|1 Jan 1890||Tomitaro Horii was born.|
|23 Nov 1942||Major General Tomitaro Horii, his chief of staff, and another staff officer died when the canoe on which they traveled aboard capsized in the Kumusi River in Australian Papua.|
Did you enjoy this article? Please consider supporting us on Patreon. Even $1 per month will go a long way! Thank you.
Share this article with your friends:
Stay updated with WW2DB:
Visitor Submitted Comments
All visitor submitted comments are opinions of those making the submissions and do not reflect views of WW2DB.
» First Battle of Shanghai
» New Guinea-Papua Campaign, Phase 1, Bismarck Islands
» New Guinea-Papua Campaign, Phase 2
» New Guinea-Papua Campaign, Phase 3
- » 1,083 biographies
- » 331 events
- » 37,471 timeline entries
- » 1,075 ships
- » 336 aircraft models
- » 189 vehicle models
- » 352 weapon models
- » 107 historical documents
- » 217 facilities
- » 463 book reviews
- » 26,641 photos
- » 318 maps
Winston Churchill, on the RAF