graduate

Higuchi Kiichiro (1888-1970)


Photograph of Higuchi Kiichiro

Wikimedia Commons

Higuchi joined the Japanese Army in 1908 and served in Siberia during the Allied intervention in 1918-22.  As part of a military mission to Germany, he apparently witnessed and was appalled by the treatment of the Jews by the Nazis: Shortly thereafter, as head of the Harbin Special Agency in 1937, and with the help of the president of the South Manchuria Railroad (and future Foreign Minister), Matsuoka Yosuke, he arranged for perhaps as many as 20,000 Jewish refugees to cross in to Manchuria and settle in Shanghai and elsewhere.

Higuchi was promoted to lieutenant general in 1939 and commanded 9 Division in Manchuria when war broke out. He was promoted to command of Northern District Army in Hokkaido in August 1942 and served in this post through the remainder of the war. He was the overall commander of Army forces in the Aleutians campaign.

Following the surrender, Stalin demanded his extradition for war crimes. The World Jewish Congress successfully petitioned MacArthur to refuse the demand.

Service record

1888     

Born
1908
Second lieutenant
Graduated from Military Academy
1918-1922     

Siberian Expedition
1933
Colonel
Commanding officer, 41 Regiment
1935

Chief of Staff, 3 Division
1937

Military mission to Germany
1937

Head, Harbin Special Agency
1938-7-21

Head, 2 Bureau, General Staff
1939-12-1
Lieutenant General     
Commanding officer, 9 Division
1942-8-1

Commanding officer, Northern District Army (later redesignated 5 Area Army)

References

Garfield (1965)

Generals.dk (accessed 2007-11-1)

Hotta (2013)

Asahi Shimbun (2010-5-4; accessed 2011-7-23)

ww2incolor.com (accessed 2011-7-23)


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