Defense of Japan 1945 (Fortress 99) by Steven Zaloga

By Steven Zaloga

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This two-man device would be anchored underwater until the American amphibious attack, then suddenly surface and fire on the approaching landing craft. (Author) a large limpet mine for attacking American transport ships farther from the shore. There were reports that the 71st Arashi deployed three of these pillboxes at the mouth of Tokyo Bay but other Japanese officers denied that they had been completed before war’s end. The Army was also sponsoring a variety of other unconventional weapons for shore defense.

The resources available for the fortification program were quite modest and included 21,200metric tons of concrete and 1,000 metric tons of steel for the This is the prototype of the Type 3 Submersible Pillbox in the Mitsubishi yard in Nagasaki. Contrary to its name, it was intended to supply the underwater gun positions. The structure on top of the hull contained coastal mines while the similar but smaller Type 2 Submersible Gun mounted a 7cm gun. (NARA) The defenses of Kyushu were heavily reinforced for Ketsu-Go.

Once the threshold had been crossed in the Leyte Gulf battle, the Navy began to expand its concept of tokko tactics to include manned torpedoes (Kaiten) and crash boats (Shinyo). The Army had already begun to plan the use of tokko tactics including suicide aircraft and an assortment of novel infantry weapons. Besides its military defeats in 1944, Japan was faced with economic calamity owing to US submarine attacks and mine warfare against its merchant marine. Japan was heavily dependent on imported food and fuel, and by January 1945 about 70 percent of its merchant navy had been sunk.

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