Hiroshima Peace Science Volume 8
1985 発行


Miscellaneous considerations on the Okinawa war of April-June, 1945
Kodera, Sayoko
This short article is the collection of some of reflections which have come about to this writer's mind while reading various documents and publications issued in regard to the Okinawa War. The battle on Okinawa Islands was the last and largest amphibious operation mounted by the U.S. Central Pacific forces and is recorded as to be the costliest operation in the Central Pacific area for both the United States and Japan. According to the Japanese formal statistic estimation, during the battle of Okinawa which lasted for three months, some 190 thousands Japanese were killed, a half of which were civilians, while 12,520 American men died on the islands. Why so many civilian people were killed in this war? The writer. in this paper, tries to sort out several causes for this too much loss of civilian lives. The article consists of six parts. Excepting the Prologue and the Epilogue, in the Chapter one, the writer tries to describe how the Okinawa War became the last war rather unexpectedly to both sides of belligerents. The Chapter two relates to various problems shown in dealing with non-combatant population in Okinawa. The Chapter three deals with the question of administrative responsibility for the civilian life in war time, and in Chapter four, the writer discusses the question of difficulties in deciding when to surrender. One of the main purposes of this writer in writing this paper is to find out possibilities to protect effectively civilians and save their lives during wars and armed conflicts of any kind.