If you want to increase your success rate, double your failure rate.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Jap Juice Chapter 6

Chapter 6
The Journal

Jack and I stared at that journal for what seemed an eternity.  The humming noise was fading in and out and Every so often I thought I smelled smoke although less and less.
I said to Jack," That's personal stuff we shouldn't be opening it".  Jack had already turned to the first entry.
He read aloud:

September 1st 1944

We have arrived at Saipan Island in the middle of the night.  The ship has been bombarding the Island from about two am this morning.  The constant booming has my head splitting in two.  I will be departing on the second wave we are set to go at 8 am this morning.  It has been a long ride to get here and I am anxious to get off of this ship.  The constant humming of the propellers has worked clear to my bones and I swear it will drive me crazy if I don't leave soon.  I am not anxious about where I am going though.  The Japs are dug in well and have been giving the 28th hell on the other side of the Island.  There's talk of a new weapon on board that we are supposed to try out once we hit the beach.  Some sort of chemical or gas thing.  However I'm not sure if this is just rumor.  Long days at sea have led to chatty lips.  Hope all goes well.  God be with us.

September 3rd 1944

So far so good.  We encountered only sporadic resistance upon hitting the beaches.  CO says the Japs are dug in at the air strip and will not be retreating at any cost.  We have established a decent beach head and will be headed inland at first light.  We spent the first two days mainly unloading and setting up command posts on the beach.  A few platoons went out for recon and have located the enemy not too very far ahead of us.  We keep hearing that the Japs will sneak in during the night and kill us while we sleep so sleep has not been easy to come by.  There is still talk of this so called secret weapon but I still have not seen it.

September 4th 1944

We spent the whole day yesterday in a constant firefight with the Japs.  Those little dinks are tough bastards.  CO was right,  they will not surrender.  We had a group of them pinned down in their bunker and when they ran out of ammo they tried a bayonet charge right at us in broad daylight.  They are fearless and although I hate them I respect their fighting spirit.  It seems as though we will have the airstrip secured by end of day on the 5th.  I am exhausted and we have lost 4 of our platoon members already.  I pray for a chance at sleep.

September 5th 1944

We have secured the airstrip and CO says that gives us a place to launch our heavy air bombers.   From here they can reach the Japanese mainland.  Casualties have been heavy nearly 3500 dead marines already and we are only half way through this horrible place.  Replacements are slow to come in and when they do they are killed almost as fast as they arrive.  We are trying to oust the Japs from these high hills and rocky ridges.  They are dug in well and we have to practically drag them out by hand to kill them.  I don't care anymore.  The more Japs I kill, the better I feel.  We have begun using flamethrowers.  We use covering fire while a marine runs up to the bunker with the flame thrower unit.  The Japs duck into their hole until we quit firing and when we stop it's too late he is already there burning them alive.  For awhile we were shooting them when they came running out on fire.  Now we just let them burn.  I feel my humanity being torn to shreds.

September 6th 1944
Same today as yesterday.  Kill more Japs.  I wonder if they have a limitless supply of them on this Island.  We have already killed thousands.  I am so tired.  No more talk of the secret weapon either.  Of course there is only a handful of us left alive that were first off the ships and had heard about it anyways.  The rest of them are all green.
Almost to the top.  CO says once we take the summit it will be all downhill from there.  Part of me says his analogy is truly based on geography.  I can't believe anything will be easy.

September 7th
I heard about the secret weapon again today.  said they were gonna drop it from a plane on the summit.  Seems as though we can't budge the Japs out of  there and they want to try something else.  We laid low most of the afternoon resting.  CO says to expect a charge tonight. Right at dusk some planes flew over the top of the hill .  I thought they were going to bomb them but I never heard any explosions.  We could hear a lot of screaming coming from the ridges tonight.  It's terrible.  I put my hands over my ears but I still hear it.    Maybe the Japs are just trying to scare us.  Psych us out before they charge.  They have to be running low on ammo and getting desperate.  CO says we will be taking the summit tomorrow at all costs.  I will say my prayers tonight.

     Jack continued to read the journals events of the next day.  Apparently a friend of this guy had died and he had wrote a tribute to him.  It was all so terrible what these guys had to go through.  The hair on the back of my neck was standing straight up and I shivered.  It was cold in there.  I hadn't noticed it before but it was frigid.  I wondered how that could be when it was almost ninety degrees outside.  I wanted to leave but Jack kept on reading.  I shivered again

September 9th 1944
May God help us.  I don't know what the hell is going on up here.  Miller is dead and I am the only one left in my platoon now.  They sent me up here to scout and get a body count.  It is quiet here I am scared.  Miller gave me a shock yesterday and I can feel something in the air.  It's not right.  An evil surrounds me up here and I can't wait to leave.  The stench of the bodies is overwhelming and I have wrapped a shirt around my face to block it out. 
They told me to wait here until reinforcements show.  Nothing is happening so I am taking a few minutes to write while I can.  I still can't figure out what happened here but it is terrible.  I keep noticing the barrel in the center of that clearing right in front of that jap bunker.   The bodies that are closest too it are all missing their eyes.  Many times the birds will pick them out and eat them but this doesn't resemble that.  Besides I have not seen one bird, animal or even flies on the corpses.  There is a noise coming from the area where the barrel is laying.  It sounds like something is in there crawling around perhaps a crab has made it's way in.  There are bunches of them crawling all over this place.  My mind says no but I must go have a look.  The barrel has markings on it although I can't decipher what they are.  They appear to be Japanese or Chinese characters or something resembling them.  In the center it appears to be two big markings that somewhat look like the letter J.  I will find out when I check on the noise.  God willing I shall return.

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