Entry #68

“Oct 2 – Had several read alerts during movie.”

Entry#68(2)

So in this entry Mike mentions how these alerts took place during a movie. This is very interesting to me, even though he does not mention what movie.

Chances are him and the other soldiers were watching this at night, after finishing their duties for the day. It was most likely shown through a projector, while being projected onto a large sheet of some sort.

Movies were a large pastime of the soldiers during the war, to try and take their mind off the horror they saw on a day to day basis.

Entry #67

“Oct 1 – Had raid at 8:30 P.M. and also a scare. Were up all night, guard thought he saw someone fooling around our vehicles.”

Entry#67(2)

Alright so the beginning of this entry starts out fairly typical, with another raid taking place. This time it is at a different time and Mike wrote “and a scare.” If that is actually what is says, I’m guessing this raid must’ve been worse than the other ones and could’ve put his life in more danger than usual. He normally does not write that the raids or anything along those lines scare him, so I’m guessing this one was quite serious if he choose to write about it. This most likely also contributed to them being up all night. They were probably very anxious from that raid, and stayed up encase another raid were to happen.

We then move onto the second part of the entry. I honestly do not even know what to write about it, as it’s very vague. The next entry was written on October 2nd, one day after this one. He does not mention anything about the vehicles.

If the guard did see someone there is a possibility it could be one of their own soldiers, a native person, or a Japanese soldier. My best guess is that it would be a native person, as if it were a Japanese soldier the guard most likely would have shot at the person(even if they couldn’t hit them, at least to scare the person off). If it was one of their own, the uniform probably would have been noticed.

If someone was tampering with the vehicles, it was probably to sabotage them and possibly prevent the soldiers from using them. I think this also rules out the possibility of it being another American soldier.

If anyone knows more about things like this that took place during the war or has any ideas on what this means please feel free to comment down below.

Entry #66

“Sept 30 – Had raid at 7 P.M. Planes were after shipping. 4 more alerts later.”

Entry#66(2)

It looks like the Japanese have not changed their time of doing the raids, as this one also took place at “7 P.M.” just like in the last few entries.

Mike then goes on to write “Planes were after shipping.” This is very interesting, as up until now, he never wrote why the Japanese were doing these raids almost every night. Now this does not mean this was the purpose the Japanese did it the other nights, and could just be the reason they did it this night. Again that is only a guess of mine.

So you might be wondering why the Japanese would target “shipping” and exactly that means? When he wrote “shipping” I think he was referring  to the cargo & troop transports ships/planes they had. These vessels were used to ship/transport resources (food, water, ammunition, clothing, weapons, etc.) and soldiers. In Entries #22 and #51 I explained what these are and went into detail about the one Mike was.

Now if my guess is correct on what he meant by “shipping”, I will also try and guess why the Japanese would target this. If the Japanese were to destroy these planes/ships then they would not only stop the soldiers below from shipping out the above mentioned resources, but also from receiving them. If they could cut off their supply of these resources it would be much easier for the Japanese to fight the soldiers later on. It is very frightening to envision the possibility of this, that was fairly standard throughout the war. If one side (Axis or Allied) were to cut off the planes/ships used to import/export resources, the other side would essentially be trapped there until help would arrive.

The final part of this entry says “4 more alerts later.” As for what type of alerts these were, I am not too sure. I would imagine they were alerts of an incoming Japanese plane/ship or group(s) of soldiers. He does not say whether or not these turned into raids, so I am not sure what actually became of these.

 

Entry #65

“Sept 29 – 3 red alerts, no raid”

Entry#65(2)

In this one Mike talked about how three red alerts went out but there were not any raids.

I can not find any information about the exact meaning of a “red alert” during WWII or the alert systems that were used. My best guess is that red would be the highest tier in the alert system, and in Mike’s specific scenario most likely meant that a Japanese plane, ship, or unit of soldiers was extremely close by and would most likely start attacking. If I am wrong or you know more information please feel free to leave a comment down below and I will update this accordingly.

I’m guessing the Japanese choose not to attack in this case to try and scare Mike and the other soldiers, which would keep their anxiety levels high.

Entry #64

“Sept 28 – Had raid at 7 P.M.. One Jap downed”

Entry#64(2)

Alright so this entry is keeping up the trend of the last few of being fairly short. As I mentioned in the previous entry I thought the Japanese would change the times they decided to conduct these raids, as two of their planes got shot down the day prior to him writing this. But I guess not as they did it again at 7 P.M. This time it was only raid  and the day of the week was a Thursday.

Mike wrote “One Jap downed.” This means that they shot one of the Japanese planes down, most likely using an anti – aircraft gun. I would imagine this along with the events that took place the previous day were huge boosts to Mike and the other soldier’s morale. But then again there is no way to tell  what Mike personally thought; if he thought this was right or wrong. I’ve mentioned this before,  but when he was alive he never spoke about the war and what he did in it.

From what my Grandmother and Mother has told me Mike was always a very reserved person in general and incredibly kind – hearted. So I could make an assumption of what Mike thought about war and killing but it would only be a guess.

Entry #63

Sept 27 – Two more raids at 6 & 7 P.M. Plenty of ack ack. 2 planes shot down.”

Entry#63(2)

Alright so the first part of this is almost identical to the last entry . If you notice the raids took place at the exact same times on the 26th & 27th. This is very interesting, as it leads me to believe the Japanese did them at this time for a specific reason. Possibly because they may have thought the soldiers were eating or relaxing at this time and would not be expecting it.

But I am guessing they changed the times after this, as Mike and the other soldiers prepared, which leads me into the second part of the entry.

Mike wrote “Plenty of ack ack. 2 planes shot down”. If you remember, in Entry #57 I explained what “ack ack” means. It is basically the term the soldiers used to describe what was being shot out of the anti – aircraft guns. The bullets being shot out were so fast they made an “ack ack” like sound. I would recommend going back and reading that entry to get a better idea of this if it’s confusing you.

Mike wrote “2 planes shot down”. This means that  the anti – aircraft guns shot those planes down. I would imagine this was a major morale boost for Mike and the other soldiers.

The Japanese lost anywhere from 35,000 to 50,000 aircraft’s through WWII while the U.S. lost 95,000 aircraft’s. If you’re interested in the actual number of equipment lost by each country in the war you can check out this website.

 

Entry #62

“Sept 26 – Had two sneak raids at 6 & 7 P.M.”

Entry#62(2)

Alright so just like the last entry this one is very short. Mike mentions how he had “two sneak raids”. Since it is so short I think the only thing that really needs explaining in this entry is the term raid.

When used in the context of military raid can have a few different connotations. First off, it can either take place by land, air, or sea. Then you get into what could actually take place during it, and what falls under the term raid.

raid could take place because of the following reasons:

  • To confuse / exhaust the enemy
  • To ransack the enemy’s goods or destroy them
  • To free prisoners of your side that the enemy may have captive (POW’s)
  • To capture or kill specific people
  • To gather intelligence

These are just a few of the main purposes of why raids are done. As you can see it is not normally intended to capture a specific area of land, and is normally a very quick thing done with a fairly small amount of highly trained people.

The best example I could give would be in modern times:

Let’s say there is a unit of U.S. SF soldiers in Afghanistan. Nearby in a small village there are two houses with key members of the Taliban. That small group of soldiers goes in quickly in the middle of the night to capture those terrorists and gain intelligence.

I hope maybe that could help you better understand and picture what type of military operation it is. Which in turn could hopefully give you a better idea of what this may have been like for Mike.

Now in terms of what Mike went through this day, I can not be sure. My best guess is that this was an air raid along with a unit(s) of ground forces. As for the purpose of the Japanese doing this or what they got out of it, I can not be sure. The Japanese most likely did this to put fear into Mike and the other soldiers and to constantly keep them on guard (which would eventually exhaust them). They were only an hour apart which is also why I think they were fairly small in nature. Since there were two raids, this most likely means Mike was in combat during these, but again there is no way for me to be certain on this.