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Inada Masazumi (1896-1986)


Photograph of Inada Masazumi
Wikipedia Commons

Inada was chief of the Operations Section of the Army General Staff at the time of the Changkufeng Incident in the Korea-Manchuria-Russia border area. He proposed a limited offensive to expel the Russians from the area as a test of Russian intentions in the Far East. His strategy was adopted and resulted in a serious military setback for the Japanese.  However, the Soviets declined to exploit their victory, suggesting that they wished to avoid a full-scale war in the Far East.

Inada developed a respect for the Red Army as a result of that experience, and was shocked when informed by radio that Kwantung Army had launched an air raid deep into Mongolian behind Nomonhan in June 1939 (Goldman 2012):

You damned idiot! What do you think will be the real meaning of this little success of yours?

Inada strongly opposing Mutaguchi's plan for U-Go (Brown 1984):

It would no doubt satisfy you to go to Imphal and die there. But Japan might be overthrown in the process.

Inada suggested instead that the Japanese armies in Burma should move into Yunnan and make contact with China Expeditionary Army, thereby making Burma irrelevant as a barrier to Allied communications with China. He believed Japan faced a war of attrition that might go on for many more years. However, Inada was scapegoated for a diplomatic failure to realign Thailand's boundaries as promised to Phibul Songkram, and his replacement proved more pliant.

Inada took commanded of 6 Air Division in April 1944 after its previous commander, Itahana Giichi, was relieved in disgrace for the Wewak debacle. Inada gave up the defense of Hollandia in the face of the massive Allied invasion that month, surviving the subsequent retreat to Sarmi to hold staff postings at Singapore and in Kyushu for the final defense of the homeland.

Service record

1896     

Born
1938
Major general    
Chief, 2 Section (Maneuvers and War Plans), 1 Bureau, Army General Staff
1940

Commander, Hotory Fortress Artillery Regiment
1941

Vice chief of staff, 5 Army
1942-7-1

Chief of staff, 5 Army
1943-2-23     

Vice chief of staff, Southern Army
1943-10-11

Commander, 2 Field Operations Base Area
1944
Lieutenant general     
Commander, 6 Air Division
1944

Retires
1945-3

Recalled. Commander, 3 Shipping Transport Command, Singapore
1945-5-3

Chief of staff, 16 Area Army
1945

Retires
1946

Arrested for war crimes
1951

Released
1986

Dies

References

Allen (1984)

Generals.dk (accessed 2009-3-30)

Goldman (2012)
Pettibone (2007)



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