Statement of Shinkichi Hosaka Related to Japanese Activities in Batangas in World War II - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore Statement of Shinkichi Hosaka Related to Japanese Activities in Batangas in World War II - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

Statement of Shinkichi Hosaka Related to Japanese Activities in Batangas in World War II

This page contains the testimony from one accused, Warrant Officer Shinkichi Hosaka, submitted as evidence in U.S.A. v Shumpei Hagino, et al., one of the war crimes trials conducted after the conclusion of World War II in the Pacific in 1945. This document was the record of a deposition conducted most likely at a Japanese prisoners-of-war where he was being held captive after the conclusion of hostilities. The pages contained herein are now declassified and were part of compiled documentation1 of war crimes trials conducted by the United States Military Commission after the conclusion of World War II. This transcription has been corrected for grammar where necessary by Batangas History, Culture and Folklore. The pagination is as it was contained in the original document for citation purposes.

[p. 1]


AGE: 35 years of age.
MARITAL STATUS: Married, 3 children.

Q What is your name and rank?

A HOSAKA, SHINKICHI, Warrant Officer, Japanese Army.

Q When did you come to the Philippines?

A On the 30th of September 1944, Manchuria.

Q What was your organization?

A From 8 July 1944 until captured, I was with the Shimbu Shudan, 8th Regiment Field Artillery, 4th Battalion Headquarters.

Q Where were you stationed in the Philippines?

A We were at Batangas from about November 1944 until January 29, 1945, and then we went near Dita and remained there until the middle of March 1945.

Q What were your duties with the 4th Battalion Headquarters?

A I was the liaison officer for the Headquarters.

Q Who were the officers of the 4th Bn. Headquarters?

1. Sato, Tomoyasu, Capt. – Commander
2. Sekiya, Sosaku, 1st Lt. – Operations.
3. Urita, Itsuo, 1st Lt. – Adjutant.
4. Sasaki, 1st Lt. – Observer

There were a couple more but I can’t remember their names.

Q How many companies were there in the 4th Battalion?
A There was the 10th Company, the 11th Company and the 12th Company. The 11th and 12the Companies were not with us but were around Manila with the Regimental Commander, Col. SETOGUCHI, IWAJIRO. One half of the 10th Co. was at Marupunio [most likely Mt. Malepunyo east of poblacion Lipa] with 1st Lt. Saito and the other half was at Dita under 1st Lt. KISHI.

Q Did the 4th Battalion come under Col. FUJISHIGE?

[p. 2]

A The units in his area, Headquarters and the 10th Company did but not the remainder of the battalion.

Q On what date did you come under Col. FUJISHIGE?

A I think sometime in January 1945.

Q Did you go on any expeditions to mop up Filipinos?

A Yes, I went to Taal in approximately the middle of February. Urita gave me orders to take nine soldiers and to report to the infantry commander, Lt. TAKEMOTO. Lt. Urita told me that we were to go with them to mop up guerrillas and that I would get further orders from Lt. TAKEMOTO.

Q Did you carry this order out?

A Yes. I took the nine men and met the Takemoto Group about halfway between Taal and Dita on the morning the expedition started.

Q What happened at this meeting?

A Lt. Takemoto explained to us that we were to carry out the orders of Col. Fujishige and to kill all people in the area. Lt. Takemoto assigned his units their duties and as my men were not infantry, I requested and we were assigned as rear security. I also requested this as I did not want to kill all people as we were ordered for I realized that this was against the rules of warfare.

Q How long did this expedition last?

A We went out for three days.

Q During these three days, did you and your men always act as rear security?

A Yes.

Q Were you able to observe the actions of the main body?

A No. We were two to three kilometers behind them and could not see what they were doing.

Q Did you and your men during these three days come across any Filipinos?
A On the first day, we saw two or three Filipinos that appeared to be dead in a rice paddy. On the second day, we passed through the town [of] Taal and we saw a number of people, but for some reason, these people were not touched. On the third day, my men and I were fired upon and two of the men were wounded. We hit the ground and when we finally looked up, we saw Filipinos running in the distance. We did not fire at them as they were too far away.

Q Did your men kill or harm any Filipinos?

A No.

[p. 3]

Q How were you and your men armed?

A The men had rifles and I had a sword.

Q Did you know how many Filipinos were killed on this expedition?

A No.

Q Do you know if any Filipinos were killed on the expedition?

A No. I was in a separate billet from the infantry and did not hear the others talking.

Q Did you go on any expeditions?

A No.

Q Did your organization go on any other expeditions?

A No.

Q Do you know who was responsible for the mopping-up activities in and around Cuenca?

A No. I just heard some of the soldiers talking about Filipinos being killed around Cuenca.

Q Do you want to make any further statement?

A I only want to state that, as a father of 3 children, I couldn’t very well go willingly on an expedition like this even if it was orders. I knew very well that killing innocent people was a direct violation of International Law and while I was on the 3-day expedition, I was in [a] daze.

The foregoing statement has been interpreted and read to me by Harold T. Oie, Sgt., and I have initialed each of the 3 pages, as evidence that I fully understand the same. That I make such [a] statement voluntarily, without hope of reward or fear of force or punishment, and with the full realization that it may be used against me in Court.

I solemnly affirm that the information contained therein is true.

/s/ Hosaka, Shinkichi
Also in Japanese characters

/s/ George D. Murphy, Jr., 2nd Lt. CMP.
/s/ Sgt. Harold T. Oie


1st Lt., JAGS

Manila War Crimes Trial US Army
Photo taken during the war crimes trials in Manila.  Image credit:  U.S. National Archives.

Notes and references:
1 “Statement of Shinkichi Hosaka, 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.
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