"Postwar Japanese No. 1" -The life of Kazuo Sakamaki, a POW of the attack on Pearl Harbor December 8, 20:16

It has been 80 years since the attack on Pearl Harbor.



There was a soldier of the Japanese Navy who sortieed in a small submarine called a "special submarine" and survived to become the "first prisoner of war in the Pacific War".



What does the trajectory of a man who boldly survived the harsh environment and supported Japan's postwar reconstruction after returning to Japan show us now?


(Nagoya Broadcasting Station, Tokushima Broadcasting Station, Network News Department)

Chapter 1 "Reunion" with Comrades for the first time in 80 years

The longest and narrowest peninsula in Japan, the Sadamisaki Peninsula in Ehime Prefecture, which protrudes to the western end of Shikoku with a length of about 50 km.



In the middle is a small bay that opens northward toward the Seto Inland Sea.

It is Sanki Bay.

December 8th, just 80 years after the attack on Pearl Harbor, which was the beginning of the Pacific War.



The unveiling ceremony of a stone monument was held in this calm sea.

The stone monument is written by Kazuo Sakamaki (1918-1999), a former ensign of the Navy, who participated in the attack on Pearl Harbor with a small submarine called a "special submarine."



Here at Mitsukue Bay, the training for midget submarines was held in secret just before the Pacific War.



All nine people who participated in the attack on Pearl Harbor with Sakamaki died in the war and were enshrined and praised as "Kyugunshin" in Japan.

However, Sakamaki, who survived and became a prisoner of war, was erased during the war.



There was a memorial monument to the "Kyugunshin" in Sanki Bay, and photographs of nine people were displayed for a long time, but there was no Sakemaki.



However, the stone monument built this time is decorated with a group photo of all 10 people who sortie in the attack on Pearl Harbor, including Sakamaki.



It's been 80 years since that day.

Sakamaki finally reunited with his comrades in this memorable place.

Kiyoshi, the eldest son of Sakamaki, who attended the unveiling ceremony, said, "80 years after I went to Hawaii, I finally came back to this place and could sleep comfortably with my nine comrades. I was talking with a relieved face.

Chapter 2 "Capture Captive No. 1" Sake Maki Kazuo

Kazuo Sakamaki was born in Tokushima prefecture in 1918.



From an early age, he showed excellent leadership qualities and went on to a naval school through a local junior high school.

After graduating, he was appointed as a second lieutenant and was selected and trained in a midget submarine.



And on December 8, 1945, I participated in the attack on Pearl Harbor.

It was planned that a total of 10 people, including Sakamaki, would board each of the five midget submarines and dive into the bay of Pearl Harbor to launch a surprise attack on the US military.

However, one of the ships on which Sakamaki was riding strayed because the machine for knowing the direction of the gyro compass was out of order, and after being attacked by the US military, it became uncontrollable and stranded.



Sakamaki, who jumped into the sea to blow up a submersible and escape to protect confidentiality, is launched to the beach while wandering alive and dead.



It was found by American soldiers and was taken prisoner.



It was the moment when I became the "first prisoner of war" in the Pacific War.



It's been four years since then.



Until Japan was finally defeated in the Pacific War, Sakamaki was moved to the mainland United States via Hawaii, moving from four prisoner-of-war camps from the snowy Midwestern Wisconsin to the scorpion-filled southern Texas. ..



In this process, the understanding of American democracy and rationalism will deepen, and Sakamaki will become a leader of the prisoners of war who are being held one after another.

Chapter 3 Expert “God of Salvation for POWs”

Tadamasa Fukiura, 80, who has been studying POWs for many years, points out that the presence of Sakamaki in an American camp was extremely important.

During the Pacific War, Japanese POW camps were everywhere.



Massive riots have occurred in Australia and New Zealand, resulting in many deaths.



However, in the United States, where the largest number of Japanese POWs were housed, such a large-scale riot did not occur.



Mr. Fukiura says that the work of sake rolls was great there.

Mr. Fukiura


"A few months after Sakamaki became a POW, new POWs came steadily, but he thoroughly told those people," Take care of yourself, "and" Let's go home and cooperate with the reconstruction of Japan. I went to the side of persuading them to say, "Let's do it together."



This is really a "god of salvation." Thousands and tens of thousands of Japanese POWs would have died in a riot without Sakamaki. May be "

Mr. Sakamaki who never killed other POWs.



Mr. Fukiura explains that there was a certain belief there.

Mr. Fukiura


"He was trying to raise the POWs into a polite and orderly" gentleman "that the U.S. military was impressed with. . Show me what a respected Japanese is, how good a Japanese



is

.

I think the Japanese soldiers who are POWs have a better attitude and demeanor than the American soldiers who supervise them

.

I think this is his kind of patriotism. "

Chapter 4 "Mental Revolution" Brother

The National Archives of Japan holds an English-translated suicide note of Sakamaki immediately after being taken prisoner.

There is a song of death poem written by Sakamaki.

When cherry blossoms fall,


Let them fall!


Drenched are the its branches and leaves


With the sorrow of today!


(Sakurahana, when it should be scattered, scatter it. Wet the branches and leaves today's sadness)

You can see the feelings of Sakamaki who refused to be a prisoner of war and strongly wanted to die.



In this way, Sakamaki was initially thinking of dying from shame, but while spending time in the camp, he will eventually change his mind that valuing his life and striving for the reconstruction of his country will reward his deceased comrades. ..



In the memorandum published by Sakamaki after returning to Japan, the feelings at the time of receiving the news of the defeat are stated as follows.

"We have to work silently. We have to shake a hoe and hit a hammer to work to rebuild and rebuild our burnt homeland. That is an apology to our deceased comrades." A retrospective of four years ”Showa 22 *)

In January 1946, Sakamaki returned to his parents' home in Tokushima, but when it was reported in newspapers, he was exposed to severe criticism.



Eventually, Toyota Motor Co., Ltd., who joined the company after being introduced, will now support Japan's postwar reconstruction at the forefront.

In addition to his own personality that is strict to himself and kind to others, he has a strong international sense and deep insight cultivated in the life of the camp, and has been a president of Toyota Brazil and a construction company for 40 years. I have completed my life as a member.



Then, in 1999, at the age of 81, he died in a turbulent life.



Nobuo Matsubara (88), a younger brother who is 15 years younger than his siblings, is still alive in Tokushima City as the people who know Sakamaki are aging and entering the devil's register.



In this interview, Mr. Matsubara talked about his brother's memories.

For Mr. Matsubara, his older brother was a proud person wearing a white Navy uniform.



When my brother came back to his hometown, he followed the greetings of the neighborhood.



It is said that there were some locals who longed for Mr. Sakamaki and aimed at the Navy.

そんな兄の所在がわからなくなったのは、真珠湾攻撃の翌年1月からでした。



ある日、外で遊んでいた松原さんのもとに海軍の中尉を名乗る男性が現れたので、自宅を案内しました。



男性は父親に兄が戦死したことを伝えました。



ところが後日、今度は海軍の少佐を名乗る別の男性が家を訪れ、「生死不明。他言はしないように」とだけ言い残し去っていったといいます。



家族は戦死の報を受けて先祖の墓に灯籠を立てました。



3月になると真珠湾に特殊潜航艇で突入し戦死した9人が九軍神としてまつられました。



「9人はおかしい。1人は捕虜になったのではないか。もしかしたら兄かもしれない」と松原さんは思ったそうです。



しかし、兄に関する情報はその後もありませんでした。



そんな状況が一変したのが、終戦後の昭和21年1月のある夜。



寝ていた松原さんは急に家族に起こされました。



眠い目をこすりながら向かった先には予想もしなかった兄がいました。



4年以上にわたった長い収容所生活を終え、徳島に帰郷したのです。



「率直にうれしかった」と松原さんは再会したときの喜びを回想します。



ただ、兄の帰国後の生活は容易なものではありませんでした。



酒巻さんの帰国を喜ぶ人もいれば、好奇心で自宅を訪ねる人、ときには「切腹して詫びろ」という手紙も寄せられたといいます。



戦争について語ることのなかった兄は、その後、企業人として日本の戦後復興に貢献することになりました。



そんな兄について松原さんはこう分析します。

My younger brother, Mr. Matsubara,


"Once I was alive, I was killed in action in the past, and I should devote myself to the reconstruction of Japan after the war. I made such a" spiritual revolution "."

This time, Mr. Matsubara could not attend the unveiling ceremony of his brother's stone monument due to health reasons, but he said, "I am happy to be able to sleep with my friends" about the fact that the stone monument was erected in this way. I am.

Chapter 5 "War" that I didn't talk about silently

Sakamaki did not tell his family or others about the horrific war and his experience of prisoners of war.



This time, my son Kiyoshi (72), who lives in Aichi prefecture, responded to the interview and looked back while looking at his father's relics such as photographs one by one.

"My dad never talked about the time of the war and the prisoners of war, and I had never heard of it with interest. He was shutting out the media after the war.



History must be told accurately. Even more so, he said he didn't have to talk about himself. "

Sakamaki who did not tell his family about his experience of the war.

However, what remains in my son's memory is the figure of his father who fought "another war."

My son Kiyoshi


"My father has experienced two wars, the Pacific War and the business war during the high-growth period.



I was born after the war, and I know my father as an office worker, but anyway, I went to work early in the morning. He was the father who went out and came back late at night. "

In the notebook that Sakamaki used when he was an office worker, the sales of automobiles and the schedule of meetings are written down in small letters.

As the president of Toyota Brazil, Sakamaki was instrumental in expanding the Japanese car market.

Kiyoshi says that the experience of the POW era may have been alive.

His son Kiyoshi said,


"I think the language skills I acquired when I was in the Navy and when I was a POW was a weapon of business. On top of that, in order to get a Japanese car, I said" low attitude but tenacious ". It seems that he was cherishing

Kiyoshi's eyes also showed his father with a different face.



When I leave the business, I like mahjong and golf, and I always have a strong connection with my friends.



All the friends who participated in the attack on Pearl Harbor died in the war, and only one of them survived, and Sakamaki was once erased from history.



That is why, in the business world where he lived after that, he said that he valued the connection with his colleagues above all else.

Chapter 6 “Raising People” Second Half

After the war, Sakamaki, who devoted himself to the business world, aimed to compete with the world in business.

We especially focused on "human resources development."



Sakamaki worked hard to train apprentice engineers "training workers" who had just graduated from junior high school at Toyota Motor Corporation.



Kiyoshi Tsunoda (84), who received direct guidance from Sakamaki, remembers that time well.

"I was an English teacher because I was fluent in languages, but I was more impressed with mental education than English." The buttons on my uniform are off, "or" Tighten your collar. " "

In the background of the strict guidance, it can be seen from the experience of POWs that Sakamaki thought that it was necessary to hurry to develop "human resources who can fight the world" in order for postwar Japan to cross the world.



Sakamaki once talked to the trainer like a habit.

"Even if we do not form a technical tie-up with an overseas automobile manufacturer, we will improve our technological capabilities and become a global automobile manufacturer with purely domestic cars made by ourselves."

After that, Mr. Tsunoda himself received the Medal with Yellow Ribbon for his achievements such as training automobile engineers.



Whenever I gave guidance to engineers, I recalled that the teachings of Sakamaki were the basis.

Mr. Tsunoda


"After all, I value people. And I love the company. I learned from Mr. Sakamaki that I value" bonds "beyond my position. , There was always a word of Mr. Sakamaki invisible to me. "

Chapter 7 That great writer also pays attention

Sakamaki who survived many unimaginable adversities powerfully at the mercy of a strange fate.



There are writers who are strongly interested in that way of life.



Toyoko Yamazaki is a writer who has published numerous social novels such as "The Sun That Never Sets" and "Shiroi Kyoto".

He died in 2013 at the age of 89, but there is the last unfinished work.



It is the "sea of ​​promises".

The story of Sakutaro Hanamaki, a self-defense force member of the main character, reconsidering his life while following in the footsteps of his father, a former soldier.



Sakamaki was the model for the father of this former soldier.



I was able to hear a valuable testimony that Mr. Yamazaki had long wanted to write Sakamaki.



Shinichiro Yashiro, the editor of Shinchosha, who was a member of the "Promised Sea" coverage team.

It is said that the trigger was the process of interviewing "two homeland" depicting Japanese Americans who were at the mercy of the Pacific War.



During the interview, a Nikkei said, "Mr. Sakamaki was brought to the camp and only one person was put in another building. He sang Japanese military songs and popular songs when he passed through the building where he was. "



In "Two Homeland", Mr. Yamazaki made a few appearances of sake rolls, and he has been interested in sake rolls for more than 30 years since then.



As he grew older and became ill and it became difficult to write a feature-length novel, Mr. Yamazaki was passionate about "there are only three people I still want to write."



One of them was Sakamaki.



"At the end, I want to write about the theme of my life, war," so Mr. Yamazaki chose Sakamaki as the total settlement of his life as a writer.



Mr. Yamazaki wrote the meaning of drawing a sake roll as follows.

"He was a prisoner of war while Japan and the United States were at war with weapons, and he was at war with no weapons alone. There is a clue to what separates war and peace in the future. I felt like there was

Chapter 8 "Postwar Japanese No. 1" -What You Learn from That Way of Life

海軍の俊英として生きた真珠湾攻撃の日まで。

捕虜第一号として広大なアメリカを転々とした流浪の4年。

そして戦後、帰国してから日本の復興を支えた後半生。

まさに波瀾万丈としか表現できない人生ですが、酒巻の生き方から、いまの日本を生きる私たちは何を学ぶことができるのでしょうか。

その答えを探る中で、ある1本のテープにたどり着きました。

収められているのは、捕虜生活について酒巻が語った肉声。

捕虜について長年研究を続けている吹浦忠正さんが、終戦から30年あまりたった1977年にインタビューした際に録音したものです。

公になるのは今回初めてです。

1時間ほどのインタビューの中で、アメリカの日本人捕虜たちをまとめ上げるリーダーとなっていったことについて酒巻はこう語っていました。

「後の者をむしろ導いていかなくちゃいけない。生きてしまった結果の事実に対して、それ(命)をまたお粗末にしてもいけない。だから結局生きておるという事は、生命を大事にして、より立派な日本人として、人間として、もっとより有意義な生き方をしていかなくちゃいけない」

聞いていて思わず背筋が伸びるような声でした。

インタビューをした吹浦さんは、酒巻は誰よりも早く“戦後”を迎えた日本人だったのではないかと言います。

吹浦さん
「戦争直後に書いた本の中で、『広い視野を持て』、『教養を身につけろ』、『知識は大事にしろ』とか、そういうことを言っている。すでに軍国主義を捨てている。アメリカ人のいいところはいいと評価している。

捕虜の身でありながら、教育者に変わっていった。彼は“捕虜第一号”であり、“戦後日本人第一号”でもあったのではないか」

酒巻を遺作「約束の海」で描いた稀代の作家、山崎豊子さんも、酒巻を“大日本帝国の呪縛から最初に逃れた人”だと評していました。

編集者として伴走した矢代さんは、「約束の海」を通じて山崎さんが訴えたかったことについてこう述べました。

矢代さん
「山崎先生の小説によく出てくるんですが、酒巻さんもいちばん最初にものすごい挫折をしているわけです。けれども、そこから立ち上がって何事かをなしていこうとする、自分で考えて行動する、つまり酒巻さんは自分の頭で考えて捕虜収容所の中でいろいろ変わっていったわけですよね。

悩んでもいい、挫折してもいい。そのうえでこれからのこの国をどうすべきか、一人一人が自分自身の頭で考えてほしい。そのヒントにしてほしいということじゃないでしょうか」

広い視野を持ち、日本人として、人間として、有意義な生き方をしなければならない――

苛烈な人生を送った1人の男が残したメッセージは、太平洋戦争の開戦から80年が過ぎ、戦争の記憶も薄れつつある中でも、決して色あせていません。

(付記)
*酒巻和男氏が帰国直後の昭和22年と昭和24年に出版した2冊の捕虜生活の体験記は入手困難となっていましたが、有志によって復刻版が出版されています。
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名古屋放送局記者
星和也
2017年入局
名古屋放送局に配属後
愛知県警や選挙取材の担当を経て
検察や裁判などを担当

Tokushimahosokyoku reporters


Terai Kannori


2017. He joined


Tokushima station starting salary place


in Nara Prefecture native, familiar to ancient tombs and ruins from an early age, majored in Japan ancient history at the university


motto is "I want to go if there is a burial mound"


favorite history The person is "Emperor Tokushima"


My recent boom is mountain climbing

Tokushimahosokyoku reporters


Arimizu Takashi


2017. He joined


starting salary area is responsible for the incident in Sapporo station


was transferred to the then Wakkanai bureau, fishing and carried out interviews on Sakhalin


responsible for the municipal administration and the economy in Tokushima stations from this year November


hobby is running

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