Reports

of

General MacArthur

 

THE CAMPAIGNS OF
MACARTHUR IN THE PACIFIC

VOLUME I

 


 

PREPARED BY HIS GENERAL STAFF


 

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 66-60005

 

 

 

 

 

Facsimile Reprint, 1994

CMH Pub 13-3


FOREWORD

The Reports of General MacArthur include two volumes being published by the Department of the Army in four books reproduced exactly as they were printed by General MacArthur's Tokyo headquarters in 1950, except for the addition of this foreword and indexes. Since they were Government property, the general turned over to the Department in 1953 these volumes and related source materials.  In Army and National Archives custody these materials have been available for research although they have not been easily accessible.  While he lived, General MacArthur was unwilling to approve the reproduction and dissemination of the Reports, because he believed they needed further editing and correction of some inaccuracies. His passing permits publication but not the correction he deemed desirable. In publishing them, the Department of the Army must therefore disclaim any responsibility for their accuracy. But the Army also recognizes that these volumes have substantial and enduring value, and it believes the American people are entitled to have them made widely available through government publication.

The preliminary work for compiling the MacArthur volumes began in 1943 within the G-3 Section of his General Staff, and was carried forward after the war by members of the G-2 Section, headed by Maj. Gen. Charles A. Willoughby with Professor Gordon W. Prange, on leave from the University of Maryland, as his principal professional assistant. Volume II of the Reports represents the contributions of Japanese officers employed to tell their story of operations against MacArthur's forces. The very large number of individuals, American and Japanese, who participated in the compilation and editing of the Reports would make a complete listing of contributors relatively meaningless.

Volume I narrates the operations of forces under General MacArthur's command from the Japanese attack on Luzon in 1941 through the surrender in 1945. While service histories have covered much of the same ground in separate volumes, no single detailed narrative of General MacArthur's leadership as commander of the Southwest Pacific Area has yet appeared. Chapters dealing with the reconquest of Borneo, plans for the invasion of Japan, and the Japanese surrender make a distinctly new contribution. Volume I Supplement describes the military phase of the occupation through December 1948, reporting events not treated elsewhere in American publications. Volume II on Japanese operations brings together a mass of information on the enemy now only partially available in many separate works. Collectively, the Reports should be of wide interest and value to the American people generally, as well as to students of military affairs. They are an illuminating record of momentous events influenced in large measure by a distinguished American soldier.

Washington, D.C.
HAROLD K. JOHNSON
January  1966
General, United States Army
 
Chief of Staff

iii


FOREWORD TO THE 1994 EDITION

I determined for several reasons to republish General MacArthur's reports to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of World War II. First, the Reports of General MacArthur still stand as a detailed account from MacArthur's perspective of his operations against the Japanese in the Southwest Pacific Area.   Second, the Reports offer a unique Japanese version of their operations in the Southwest Pacific that remains one of the few English-language descriptions of Imperial Army campaigns during World War II. Third, excellent illustrations, many of them original artwork commissioned for the Reports, plus superb maps give these volumes an enduring value for military historians and the American public. Finally, while General MacArthur remains a towering figure in American historiography, the passage of fifty years has dimmed the contributions of the U.S. Army units that first checked the Japanese southward advance in Papua New Guinea, then spearheaded the counteroffensive along the north New Guinea coastline that enabled MacArthur to make good his promise to return to the Philippines. The veterans of these campaigns, both men and women, deserve to be remembered for their contributions to the Nation in its time of greatest peril. These are General MacArthur's Reports, but they are also his testament to the American soldiers who served under his command.

 

Washington, D.C.
HAROLD W. NELSON
31 January 1994
Brigadier General, USA
 
Chief of Military History

 

 

iv


PREFACE

This report has been prepared by the General Staff of GHQ to serve as a background for, and introduction to the detailed operational histories of the various tactical commands involved.

The pressure of other duties having prevented my personal participation in its preparation, it has been entrusted by me to that magnificent staff group which actually conducted the staff work during the progress of the campaigns. They speak with that sincere and accurate knowledge which is possessed only by those who have personally participated in the operations which they record.

 

DOUGLAS MACARTHUR

 

 

 

v


TABLE OF CONTENTS

Chapter
 
Page
I
THE JAPANESE OFFENSIVE IN THE PACIFIC

......Pearl Harbor

1

......Japanese Strategic Objectives

1

......Initial American Dispositions

3

......Allied Strategy after Pearl Harbor

4

......The Attack against the Philippines

6

......Strategic Withdrawal to Bataan

14

......The Battle for Bataan

16

......United States Army Forces in Australia

21

......The ABDA Command

22

......The Threat to Australia

22

......Disposition of Forces

26
II
ESTABLISHMENT OF THE SOUTHWEST PACIFIC AREA

......General MacArthur Arrives in Australia

28

......Organization of the Pacific Theater

30

......Establishment of General Headquarters, Southwest Pacific Area

31

......The Organization of Forces

33

......Decision to Take the Offensive

34

......The Magnitude of the Task

40
III
HALTING THE JAPANESE

......Concept of the Offensive

45

......Strengthening Port Moresby

45

......Battle of the Coral Sea

46

......Kanga Force

49

......Battle of Midway

50

......Milne Bay and Merauke

50

......Kokoda Trail

51

......Intelligence in Operations

53

......General Headquarters Transferred to Brisbane

55

......Pursuing the Counteroffensive

55

......Japanese Landing near Buna

62

......Enemy Advance along Kokoda Trail

62

......Action in the Solomons

63

......Battle of Milne Bay

66

......Enemy Checked near Port Moresby

70

vii

IV
CLEARING OF PAPUA

......Plans and Preparations

72

......Clearing the Owen Stanleys

75

......Airlift to Wanigela

78

......Landings on Goodenough Island

79

......Guadalcanal

80

......The Advance in Papua Continues

84

......Attack Stalemated

88

......The Fall of Buna

91

......Gona-Sanananda

96

......The End of the Papuan Campaign

98
V
UP FROM PAPUA
......

......Concept of Strategy

100

......The Struggle for Wau

101

......General Situation in Early 1943

105

......Southwest Pacific Area Command

107

......Battle of the Bismarck Sea

110

......Final Plans

113

......Woodlark and Kiriwina

117

......New Georgia

117

......Nassau Bay to Salamaua

120

......Air Attack on Wewak

121

......Nadzab and Lae

122

......Securing the Huon Peninsula

124

......Bougainville

125

......New Britain

128

......Saidor

132

......Objectives of 1943 Achieved

132
VI
THE WESTWARD DRIVE ALONG NEW GUINEA
......

......Preliminary Plans

134

......The Admiralties

136

......Supplementary Operations

142

......Plan to By-Pass Hansa Bay

142

......Hollandia-Aitape Invasion

145

......Regrouping of Command Functions

149

......Capture of Wakde Islands

150

......Struggle for Biak

152

......Noemfoor Island

153

......Counterattack at Aitape

156

......Seizure of Sansapor

160

viii

......

......End of the New Guinea Campaign

160

......The Battle against Enemy Coastal Shipping

164

......New Strategic Situation

165
VII
THE PHILIPPINES: STRATEGIC OBJECTIVE
......

......Basic Strategy

166

......Initial Planning for the Philippines

168

......The "Musketeer" Plans

170

......Leyte Invasion Date Advanced

172

......Morotai

174

......Palau Islands

178

......Preparing for the Leyte Invasion

178

......Logistic Support

179

......Organization of Forces

181

......Additional Fleet and Air Support

183

......Operations Instructions

184

......Logistical Difficulties

190

......Japanese Forces in the Philippines

190

......The Filipinos in the Plan of Operations

191

......Preliminary Air Bombardment

193
VIII
THE LEYTE OPERATION
......

......Strategic Value of Leyte

196

......Clearing Leyte Gulf

196

......The Return of MacArthur

198

......Widening the Beachheads

199

......Naval Threat to Leyte Gulf

203

......Indications of Japanese Intentions

205

......Approach of Enemy Naval Forces

207

......Estimate of the Enemy Plan

209

......Battle of Surigao Strait

212

......Third Fleet Goes North

213

......Battle off Samar

216

......Admiral Kurita Breaks Off Engagement

221

......Defeat of the Japanese Navy

223

......Japanese Reaction to the Invasion

224

......The Advance Inland

226

......Resistance Stiffens

228

......Approach to the Ormoc Corridor

230

......The Japanese Attack Burauen

232

......Preparation for the Ormoc Landing

233

......Ormoc Captured

234

ix

......

......Leyte Secured

235

......Leyte in Retrospect

237
IX
THE MINDORO AND LUZON OPERATIONS
......

......Plans for the Northern Philippines

242

......Choosing the Route to Luzon

243

......Final Plans for the Mindoro Landing

246

......Occupation of Mindoro

247

......Assault at Lingayen Gulf

254

......I Corps Advances Eastward

261

......XIV Corps Advances Southward

262

......Enemy Plan of Defense

263

......XI Corps Cuts Across Bataan

267

......Recapture of Clark Field and Fort Stotsenburg

269

......Final Drive to Manila

270

......Battle in Manila

271

......Bataan and Corregidor Retaken

277

......The Assault East of Manila

280

......Drive in the North

284

......Ipo and Wawa Dams Captured

288

......Clearing Batangas and the Bicol Peninsula

288

......Occupation of Kiangan and the Cagayan Valley

291
X
GUERRILLA ACTIVITIES IN THE PHILIPPINES
......

......The Philippine Resistance Movement

295

......Activities of the Allied Intelligence Bureau

298

......Activities of the Philippine Regional Section

304

......The Guerillas on Mindanao

308

......The Guerillas on Negros, Cebu, and Bohol

312

......The Guerillas on Panay and Adjacent Islands

315

......The Guerillas on Leyte and Samar

316

......The Guerillas on Luzon

318

......General MacArthur's Tribute to the Philippine Guerillas

324
XI
OPERATIONS OF THE EIGHTH ARMY IN THE SOUTHERN PHILIPPNES
......

......Southward Advance

327

......Clearing the Visayan Passages

328

......Operations on Palawan

328

......The Zamboanga Landing

333

......Clearing the Sulu Archipelago

337

......Planning for Operations in the Southern Visayas

339

......The Seizure of Panay

339

x

......

......The Attack on Negros Occidental

342

......Liberating Cebu

343

......Final Operations in the Visayas-Bohol and Negros Oriental

347

......The Enemy Situation in Mindanao

348

......X Corps Invades Mindanao

348

......Kabakan to Davao

351

......Clearing the Sayre Highway

352

......The Landing at Macajalar Bay

354

......Reduction of Enemy Forces in East-Central Mindanao

354

......Final Operations on Mindanao

355

......End of the Philippine Campaign

355
XII
FINAL SWPA OPERATIONS AND ORGANIZATION OF AFPAC
......

......Changing Concepts

363

......The Directives of 3 April 1945

366

......Pacific Theater Command Reorganization

367

......Army Air Force Reorganization

368

......Plans for the Borneo Campaign

369

......Final Southwest Pacific Operations: Borneo

371

......Assault along the West Coast

375

......Assault along the East Coast

379

......Final Actions in New Guinea, New Britain, and Bougainville

383

......Interim Plans

387

......Command Changes for "Olympic"

389

......Division of Southwest Pacific Area

391

......Demobilization, Redeployment, and Replacements

393
XIII
"DOWNFALL" - THE PLAN FOR THE INVASION OF JAPAN
......

......Evolution of "Downfall"

395

......Strategies under Consideration

397

......Concept of "Downfall"

399

......Japanese Plans and Estimates

401

......Geography and Road Net of Kyushu

406

......General Plan of "Olympic"

407

......Employment of "Olympic" Ground Forces

411

......Logistics Arrangements

411

......The Enemy Situation

414

......The Planned Defense of Kyushu

418

......American Plan for the Invasion of Honshu-Operation "Coronet"

423

......Geographical Considerations

426

xi

......
......Employment of "Coronet" Ground Forces
427
......Enemy Plans for the Defense of Honshu
427
XIV
JAPAN'S SURRENDER
......
......Continued Pressure on Japan
431
......Naval Pre-Invasion Operations
433
......The Potsdam Operations
435
......"Blacklist" Plan
436
......The Final Blows
440
......Japan Capitulates
442
......Preparations for Surrender
445
......The Manila Conference
447
......Reorganization of AFPAC
450
......Initiation of "Blacklist"
450
......Tokyo Bay: 2 September 1945
454
......Surrender throughout the SWPA Areas
458
......"The Guns are Silent"
466
Plate

 

ILLUSTRATIONS

Page
1
The Japanese Conquests which Isolated General MacArthur's Forces in the Philippines
(Facing) 1
2
The Japanese Invasion of the Philippines and the Forces Employed
5
3
Aerial Reconnaissance of Luzon
8
4
Operations on Luzon, December 1941
9
5
Terrain Features of Bataan
12
6
Route of Strategic Withdrawal to Bataan and Concept of Defense
13
7
Action on Bataan, January-April 1942
17
8
Disintegration of the Malay Barrier and the Threat to Australia
24
9
Orientation Map Showing Lack of Rail Transportation along the Vulnerable Northern Coast
25
10
The Boundaries of the Southwest Pacific Area and the Extent of the Japanese Advance
32
11
The Main Australian Defense Areas
36
12
The United States Superimposed on the Southwest Pacific Area
41
13
Relief Map of New Guinea
44
14
Battle of the Coral Sea
48
15
Section along the Kokoda Trail
52
16
Coast Watching Teleradio Stations
56
17
Operation Plan "Tulsa Two B"
60
18
Japanese Thrust toward Port Moresby
64

xii

19
Enemy Landings at Milne Bay, August 1942
65
20
Action from Oivi to Imita Ridge, July-September 1942
68
21
Japanese Dispositions and Capabilities, September 1942
69
22
Relief Map of Eastern Papua
73
23
Axes of Advance, Papuan Campaign
76
24
Owen Stanley Offensive
77
25
Coast Watchers Stations (AIB) along the Japanese Bomber Routes, August 1942-April 1943
83
26
Action in Kokoda-Oivi-Wairopi, November 1942
86
27
Terrain Features, Buna-Gona Area
90
28
The Capture of Buna
94
29
Sanananda Front, 22 November 1942-22 January 1943
95
30
New Guinea-Solomons Area
102
31
Strategic Location of Wau
106
32
Command Organization, Southwest Pacific Area
108
33
Operations Chart "Elkton Plan," New Britain-New Ireland-New Guinea Area
114
34
Operations, Nassau Bay to Salamaua
119
35
Nadzab and Lae
123
36
The Envelopment of the Huon Peninsula
126
37
Allied Operations and Estimated Enemy Dispositions, Solomon Islands
127
38
Enemy Ground Dispositions, Bismarck Archipelago, 30 November 1943
130
39
Westward Drive along New Guinea
135
40
Admiralty Islands Campaign
139
41
Hollandia Operation, 22 April-6 June 1944
147
42
Wakde-Sarmi Operation, 17 May-2 September 1944
151
43
Biak Island Operation, 27 May-20 August 1944
154
44
Noemfoor Island Operation, 2 July-31 August 1944
155
45
Japanese Counterattack East of Aitape
158
46
Sansapor-Cape Opmarai Operation, 30 July-31 August 1944
159
47
Enemy Shipping Routes Destroyed during the New Guinea Campaign
163
48
The Philippines
167
49
"Musketeer II" Plan
171
50
The Morotai Campaign, 15 September-4 October 1944
175
51
Enemy Airfields Reported in Use, September 1944
177
52
Allied Geographical Section Publications
180
53
Organization of Forces for the Leyte Operation
182
54
Plan of the Leyte Operation
185
55
Enemy Ground Dispositions, 30 September 1944
192
56
Leyte
197
57
Sixth Army Landings on Leyte, 17-20 October 1944
200

xiii

58
Leyte Assault, 20-25 October 1944
201
59
Approach of Naval Forces
204
60
Battle for Leyte Gulf
210
61
Battle of Surigao Strait
214
62
Battle off Samar
219
63
Leyte Attack Continues, 25 October-2 November 1944
227
64
Ormoc-Carigara Corridor, 3 November-25 December 1944
231
65
General Situation, Leyte Campaign, 31 December 1944
238
66
Enemy Shipping Routes Destroyed during the Leyte Campaign
239
67
"Musketeer III" Plan: Love and Mike Operations
244
68
Luzon
245
69
Japanese Operational Airfields on Luzon, 31 December 1944
248
70
Mindoro-Marinduque
249
71
Organization of Naval Forces for the Lingayen Assault
253
72
Organization of Ground Forces for the Lingayen Assault
255
73
Approach of Forces to Lingayen
257
74
Sixth Army Landings, Lingayen Gulf, 9-17 January 1945
260
75
Drive to Manila, 18-26 January 1945
264
76
Japanese Plan for Defense of Luzon, 19 December 1944
265
77
The Envelopment of Manila, 27 January-5 February 1945
268
78
The Battle of Manila, 3 February-3 March 1945
274
79
Bataan Retaken, 13-21 February 1945
278
80
Recapture of Corregidor, 16-28 February 1945
279
81
Assault Eastward from Manila, 8 March-28 May 1945
282
82
Operations in Northern Luzon, 26 January-8 August 1945
286
83
Operations in Southern Luzon, 15 March-25 May 1945
290
84
Major Guerilla Forces in the Philippines, 1942-1945
299
85
Military Districts, 1943-1945
303
86
AIB and PRS Penetrations of the Philippines, 1943-1944
306
87
Philippine Islands Communications, 15 December 1943
307
88
General Philippine Intelligence Coverage, 1943-1944
310
89
Mindanao Guerilla Organization, 31 January 1945
311
90
Central Philippines Guerilla Organization, October-November 1944
314
91
Guerilla Forces on Luzon, October-November 1944
319
92
Cabanatuan Prison Raid, 30-31 January 1945
322
93
The Philippine General Radio Net Developed during the Japanese Occupation, 9 October 1944
326
94
Plan of "Montclair III": Victor Operations, 25 February 1945
330
95
Clearing of the Visayan Passages, 19 February-8 May 1945
331
96
Operations on Palawan, 28 February-30 June 1945
334
97
Seizure of Zamboanga and the Sulu Archipelago, 10 March-20 June 1945
335

xiv

98
Operations in Panay and Negros Occidental, 18 March-20 June 1945
340
99
Landings on Cebu, Bohol, and Negros Oriental, 26 March-20 June 1945
345
100
The Assault against Central Mindanao, 17 April-5 May 1945
349
101
Final Operations on Mindanao, 6 May-11 August 1945
353
102
The Philippine Campaign, October 1944-July 1945
356
103
Enemy Shipping Routes Destroyed during the Philippine Campaign
361
104
Enemy Ground Dispositions, General Pacific Area, 30 April 1945
365
105
Enemy Dispositions on Borneo, 30 April 1945
373
106
Tarakan Operation, 1 May-21 June 1945
376
107
Brunei Bay Operations, 10 June-14 July 1945
377
108
Balikpapan Operation, 1-18 July 1945
381
109
The Borneo Operations, May-July 1945
384
110
Mop-Up Operations in Eastern New Guinea, New Britain, and Bougainville
385
111
Organization of United States Army Forces in the Pacific
390
112
"Downfall" Plan for the Invasion of Japan, 28 May 1945
396
113
Kyushu
400
114
Disposition of Japanese Army Ground Forces in the Homeland, April 1945
404
115
Road and Railroad Net, Kyushu
408
116
Organization of Forces for "Olympic"
409
117
Staging of Forces for "Olympic"
412
118
"Olympic," the Invasion of Kyushu
413
119
Estimated Enemy Ground Dispositions on Kyushu, 28 July 1945
416
120
Japanese Ground Dispositions on Kyushu, 18 August 1945
420
121
Organization of Forces for "Coronet"
422
122
Honshu
424
123
Landing Beaches, Roads, Railroads, and Critical Defiles, Kanto Plain
425
124
"Coronet," the Invasion of Honshu
428
125
Japanese Ground Dispositions on Honshu, 18 August 1945
429
126
Allied Landings, August 1942 to August 1945
432
127
Third Fleet Pre-Invasion Operations against Japan
434
128
"Blacklist" Organization of Forces
438
129
Basic Plan for the Occupation of Japan
439
130
Aerial Bombardment of Japan
443
131
Organization of Ground Forces for the Occupation of Japan Proper
451
132
Surrender Document
456
133
Japanese Surrender throughout the Pacific
462
134
Japanese Strength Overseas, August 1945
463

xv


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