Japanese War Footage from WWII
dunchoke at hotmail.com
Fri Jan 14 23:22:12 EST 2000
In December of 1998 I visited Saipan where I toured Bonzai Cliff and Suicide
Cliff. Bonzai Cliff is the location where 1500 Japanese civilians committed
suicide by jumping into the sea. Suicide Cliff is considered the Last
Command Post for the Japanese in Saipan and is the location where hundreds
of Japanese soldiers jumped to their death. According to the tourist guide
the U.S. Marines were able to film the Bonzai Cliff incident. My guess is
that if this film exists (and it's a big if) then the Library of Congress
would have it.
Again in Saipan I picked up two books. One is "World War II Remnants: Guam,
Northern Mariana Islands" by Dave Lotz. This book shows the location of all
the important battles in Guam, Rota and Saipan. It has a pretty good
bibliography as well. Of interest to you would be the films titled "Official
Operational Report. Part 1 Saipan, Part 2 Guam, Part 3 Tinian" These films
were produced by the United States Marine Corps and are held in Washington.
The other book is titled, "Saipan, A Brief History and Tour Guide" by Don A.
Farrell and published by Micronesian Productions, CNMI Tinian, MP. This book
has scads of historical photographs of the location prior to, during and
after the occupation of these islands by the Japanese. Unfortunately there
are no credits with these photos but you could probably find them by asking
the author directly or contacting CNMI Archives, Northern Marianas College,
P.O. Box 1250, Saipan, MP 96950. Phone 670-234-5498.
One more thing, (my apologies to the people on the list). When I was working
at an archives in Montreal a couple of years ago, I recall a story about the
Okinawan government suing the U.S. for the return of over 100 declassified
films held at the Library of Congress depicting the capture and occupation
of Okinawa by the U.S. Sorry, I can't remember who won the suit and who hold
these films now.
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