Statement of Keiichi Kimura Related to Japanese Activities in Batangas in World War II
Akita Ken, Kajino Gun, Nanataki Mura Aza Fujiwara
Age: 28 – Single
Q What is your name, rank and organization?
A Kimura, Keiichi, M/Sgt., 17the Regiment, 2nd Battalion.
Q What company were you with in the 2nd Battalion?
A I was with the Headquarters from September 1944 until 25 July 1945, and from that date, I was with the Machine Gun Company until we surrendered.
Q While you were with the 2nd Battalion, did you go on any of their mopping up expeditions?
A Yes. I went on the expedition to Taal.
Q Who was in charge of this expedition?
A Lt. Takemoto. I was under Lt. Hagino Shumpei who had charge of us men from Headquarters.
Q How many men did Lt. Hagino have under him at Taal?
A Approximately 10 or 12.
Q Who were these men?
A I don’t remember them all, but I will give you the names of the ones I remember:
2. Sgt. Kamada, Masa o-70595
3. L/Pvt. Otsuka, Isamu
4. S/Pvt. Kikuchi, Ichiro
5. L/Pvt. Enda, Keizo
6. S/Pvt. Ito, Kiyoshi - 160482
Q Are these men alive?
A I believe that W/O Ito and Sgt. Kamada are but I don’t know what happened to the others.
Q How long were you on the expedition?
A For three days and three nights.
Q What were your duties?
A The first two days, I remained around the billeting area as I was in charge of the men preparing food. On the third day, Lt. Hagino took myself and about ten (10) other men and we went to the house of a Filipino on the outskirts of Taal. This man was an informer, I believe, as he took our group into an area where he thought the guerrillas were hiding. We searched the area but could find none of them, so we returned to the billeting area.
Q How was this group armed?
A Lt. Hagino had a sword and the remainder of us carried rifles.
Q While you were on this detail, did you harm any Filipinos?
A No. We didn’t find any as this was [the] third day of the expedition and all of them, I guess, had left the area.
Q Did Lt. Hagino remain in the billeting area on the first two days?
A No. I saw him leaving the area with the others. He was armed with a sword and the men under him had rifles.
Q Do you know whether he was going out to mop-up Filipinos?
A Yes. The men under him were all men from the Headquarters and these men told me that they were ordered by Lt. Hagino to kill guerrillas during those two days.
Q Was it possible that Lt. Hagino was going after food when you saw him leaving the billeting area on the first two days?
A No, I don’t believe so. Our food was sent to us from Hdqts and the men who were out on the expedition would always bring back some chickens, pigs or something like that with them.
Q Did you go with the 2nd Battalion on the expedition to Bauan?
Q Do you know what happened at Bauan?
A No. I did not hear.
Q Do you know anything about the mopping up activities in Cuenca?
I solemnly affirm the information contained therein is true.
/s/ George D. Murphy, Jr., 2nd Lt. CMP
/s/ Harold T. Oie
[Sgd.] GUILLERMO DE GUZMAN
2nd Lt., INF (PA)
|Photo taken during the war crimes trials in Manila. Image credit: U.S. National Archives.|
1 “Statement of Keiichi Kimura, part of the documentation in U.S.A. v Shumpei Hagino, et al.,” part of the U.S. Military Commission compilation of war crimes documentation, online at the Internet Archive.