Friday, July 31, 2009

The Michigan Dog Man

In 1987, as an April's Fool's prank, Michigan DJ Jack O'Malley got together with his production director Steve Cook, and made up a song about a half-dog half-man creature that roamed the backwoods of the northern portion of the state.

The creature, which they dubbed the Michigan Dog Man, was created from bits and pieces of creatures from other state legends, including the Bigfoot legend, the legend of the New Jersey Devil, the Boggy Creek Monster, and several other 'cryptids' (animals that appear in legend but heretofore have not been found in nature).

Cook was an avid fan of the paranormal and a student of folklore. The two men came up with a history of the Michigan Dog Man, which included a seven year cycle of appearances. The song played on the radio, the joke was a success, and then the reports started coming in.

But that wasn't the weirdest part.

Turns out there really is an Indian legend unique to the northern part of Michigan about a half-dog, half-man creature that early French explorers claimed to have seen and is referred to in historical texts as the loup garou.The loup garou is a half-man, half-wolf beast that is roughly equivalent to the werewolf of popular fiction and late night horror movies, and was native to the Canadian woodland areas, Michigan, Indiana, and parts of Illinois.

Linda Godfrey, an Elkhart Wisconsin writer, first heard about Dog Man sitings in the greater Chicagoland area, and began to research the phenomenon. Her first book, The Beast of Bray Road, started out as a tongue-in-cheek look at what she assumed would be a totally bogus collection of local lore and dubious anecdotes. However, once Bray got into her research and began interviewing eyewitnesses and collecting evidence, she found herself quickly coverted.

Today, a Dogman blog keeps Dog Man watchers up on the latest sitings, and Bray continues to research and write about what she now believes is an actual creature.

Is there any truth to the legend?

Well, I walk my dog every morning for an hour in a 700 acre nature preserve a mile from my Michigan home. I've never seen the Dog Man there. But I can tell you for sure that the woods in Michigan can be damned spooky, and there have been many mornings when if I had indeed run into a Dog Man, it wouldn't have really surprised me one bit. Seriously.

We are so isolated from nature, most of us, that we really don't 'get it' anymore. So when these legends surface, they become sensational because they are strange to us. For the native peoples of this region, legend and reality were not so sharply separated. They understood that every place also had spirit, and that spirit could change form, or be formless, or invade a human being. Spirit is fluid, shapeshifting. We have no word for that now. We have no concept. 'Legend' is as close as we come, and that's not quite the right word.

Eyewitnesses confirm the shapeshifting quality of the Dog Man, often reporting that at first they thought they were looking at a huge, unnaturally large dog or wolf, but that as they watched, the animal stood on its hind legs and its arms elongated right before their eyes, becoming more humanlike. The Dog Man is often said to have red eyes and a fierce contenance, a detail shared with the New Jersey Devil.

I have a fascination with the paranormal, and the cryptid branch of the paranormal is especially cool. I do believe that there are creatures that inhabit the netherworld between form and spirit, and that can move at will between these worlds.

Is the Michigan Dog Man one of those creatures?


Wanna go for a walk in the woods?


Bizarre animal in Japan

Here is some provocative video of a mysterious creature encountered by Japanese fishermen on a rocky seashore.

The excitement begins when the three men notice a group of strange animals on the side of a nearby cliff. Curious, they approach for a closer look and eventually manage to corner one. (The close encounter begins at 1:45 into the video.)

The slimy, pulsating beast — like something out of a Cronenberg film — appears to be some sort of amphibious sea animal that ventured ashore. After poking and prodding the creature with a stick and flipping it over to reveal an undulating, sphincter-like orifice, one of the men rashly — and unwisely — decides to give it a swig of his carbonated beverage. You don’t want to miss the explosive conclusion.

Is this a bizarre new species? Alien creature? Spectacular hoax? You be the judge.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Adam´s Bridge

Space images taken by NASA reveal a mysterious ancient bridge in the Palk Strait between India and Sri Lanka. The recently discovered bridge currently named as Adam´s Bridge is made of chain of shoals, c.18 mi (30 km) long.

The bridge´s unique curvature and composition by age reveals that it is man made. The legends as well as Archeological studies reveal that the first signs of human inhabitants in Sri Lanka date back to the a primitive age, about 1,750,000 years ago and the bridge´s age is also almost equivalent.

This information is a crucial aspect for an insight into the mysterious legend called Ramayana, which was supposed to have taken place in tredha yuga (more than 1,700,000 years ago).

In this epic, there is a mentioning about a bridge, which was built between Rameshwaram (India) and Srilankan coast under the supervision of a dynamic and invincible figure called Rama who is supposed to be the incarnation of the supreme.

This information may not be of much importance to the archeologists who are interested in exploring the origins of man, but it is sure to open the spiritual gates of the people of the world to have come to know an ancient history linked to the Indian mythology. Comment From Hugh Joseph (10-12-02) I read the story headlined above with great interest. This is a story of major significance, as understanding its implications will turn the entire world of Science and History on its head. This bridge, according to accounts in the Ramayana and the Srimad-Bhagavatam, was constructed in the age know as Treta, over 2 million years ago.

How did the writers without super space-ranging satellites know about the existence of this bridge? In these ancient accounts, written over 5,000 years ago, we find discussions of, among other things, space travel, inter planetary travel, what we call UFOs and what we mistakenly call ETs. This is not only the History of the planet Earth, but also of this Universe, (a mediocre universe among many millions of universes.)

Here one can also learn the real undisguised and uncontaminated truth about God. Our man-made religions are of little or no value when compared to the stunning and breathtaking revelations found in the pages of the Srimad-Bhagavatam, Ramayan, Bhagavad-gita, etc.

Here is the way the "Srimad Bhagavatam" describes the event:

nara-devatvam apannah sura-karya-cikirsaya samudra-nigrahadini cakre viryany atah param


"In the eighteenth incarnation (of Lord Krishna), the Lord appeared as King Rama. In order to perform some pleasing work for the demigods, He exhibited superhuman powers by controlling the Indian Ocean and then killing the atheist King Ravana, who was on the other side of the sea".

The Personality of Godhead Sri Rama assumed the form of a human being and appeared on the earth for the purpose of doing some pleasing work for the demigods, or the administrative personalities, to maintain the order of the universe. Sometimes great demons and atheists like Ravana and Hiranyakasipu and many others become very famous due to advancing material civilization by the help of material science and other activities, with a spirit of challenging the established order of the Lord. For example, the attempt to fly to other planets by material means is a challenge to the established order. The conditions of each and every planet are different, and different classes of human beings are accommodated there for particular purposes mentioned in the codes of the Lord. But, puffed up by tiny success in material advancement, sometimes the godless materialists challenge the existence of God. Ravana was one of them, and he wanted to deport ordinary men to the planet of Indra (heaven) by material means without consideration of the necessary qualifications. He wanted a staircase to be built up directly reaching the heavenly planet so that people might not be required to undergo the routine of pious work necessary to enter that planet. He also wanted to perform other acts against the established rule of the Lord. He even challenged the authority of Sri Rama, the Personality of Godhead, and kidnapped His wife, Sita. Of course Lord Rama came to chastise this atheist, answering the prayer and desire of the demigods. He therefore took up the challenge of Ravana, and the complete activity is the subject matter of the "Ramayana". Because Lord Ramachandra was the Personality of Godhead, He exhibited superhuman activities which no human being, including the materially advanced Ravana, could perform. Lord Ramacandra prepared a royal road on the Indian Ocean with stones that floated on the water. The modern scientists have done research in the area of weightlessness, but it is not possible to bring in weightlessness anywhere and everywhere. But because weightlessness is the creation of the Lord by which He can make the gigantic planets fly and float in the air, He made the stones even within this earth to be weightless and prepared a stone bridge on the sea without any supporting pillar. That is the display of the power of God.

Here's the account from the "Ramayana" of Sage Valmiki:

"At Rama's command, those lions among the monkeys entered the mighty forest with alacrity in hundreds and thousands on every side and those leaders on the simian tribes, tearing up the rocks, which in size they resembled, and the trees also dragged them to the sea and they covered the ocean with Sala, Ashvararna, (list of tree names).Those foremost monkeys transported those trees, with or without roots, bearing them like so many standards of Indra (the king of heaven) and they heaped (list of tree names) here and there. With the aid of mechanical devices, those powerful colossi dug up stones as big as elephants and rocks, and the water suddenly spouted into the air only to fall instantly. Thereafter those monkeys churned up the sea by rushing into it on all sides pulling on the chains.

"That immense causeway constructed by Nala in the bosom of the sea was built by the arms of those monkeys of formidable exploits and it extended over a hundred leagues.

"Some brought trunks of trees and others set them up; it was by hundreds and thousands that those monkeys, like unto giants, made use of reeds, logs and blossoming trees to construct that bridge, rushing hither and thither with blocks of stone resembling mountains or the peaks of crags, which, flung into the sea, fell with a resounding crash.

"The first day those monkeys resembling elephants, or immense energy, full of high spirits and exceedingly merry, erected fourteen leagues of masonry. The second day, those highly active monkeys of formidable stature set up twenty leagues. Bestirring themselves, those giants threw twenty-one leagues of structure over the ocean on the third day and on the fourth, working feverishly, they built up twenty-two leagues in extent. The fifth day, those monkeys, industrious workers, reached to twenty-three leagues distance from the further shore.

"That fortunate and valiant son of Vishvakarma (architect of the demigods), leader of the monkeys, constructed a causeway worthy of his sire over the ocean and that bridge erected by Nala over the sea, the haunt of whales, dazzling in its perfection and splendor, was like the constellation of Svati in space.

"Then the gods, Gandharvas, Siddhas (living beings superior to humans) and supreme Rishis (great sages) assembled in the sky, eager to see that masterpiece, and the gods and Gandharvas gazed on that causeway, so difficult of construction, that was ten leagues in width and a hundred in length built by Nala.

"Those monkeys thereafter dived, swam and shouted at the sight of that unimaginable marvel that was almost inconceivable and caused one to tremble! And all beings beheld that causeway thrown over the ocean and by hundreds and thousands of kotis (millions), those monkeys, full of valor, having built that bridge over the immense repository of waters, reached the opposite shore.

"Vast, well-constructed, magnificent with its wonderful paved floor, solidly cemented, that great causeway like unto a line traced on the waves, resembled the parting of a woman's hair.

"Meanwhile Bibishana (brother of Ravana who joined Rama), mace (club) in hand, held himself ready at his post with his companions in case of an enemy attack. Thereafter Sugriva addressed Rama, who was valiant by nature, saying "Mount on the shoulders of Hanuman and Laxmana (brother of Rama) on those of Angada. O Hero, vast is this ocean, the abode of whales; those two monkeys who freely range the sky will transport you both."

"Then the fortunate Rama and Laxmana advanced thus and that magnanimous archer was accompanied by Surgriva. Some monkeys strode forward in the center, some threw themselves into the waves, some sprang into the sky, others marched on the bridge, some ranged through space like birds, and the terrific tumult of the trampling of that formidable army of monkeys drowned the roar of the ocean.

"When those simian troops had passed over the sea by the grace of Nala's causeway, the king ordered them to camp on the shore which abounded in roots, fruits and water.

At the sight of that masterpiece that had materialized under the command of Raghava (another name of Lord Rama), despite the difficulties, the gods, who had drawn near with the Siddhas and Charanas as also the great Rishis, anointed Rama in secret there, with water form the sea, and said: "Mayest thou be victorious over thy foes, O Thou, who are a God among men! Do Thou rule over the earth and the sea eternally!"

Thus in various auspicious words, did they acclaim Rama in the midst of the homage offered to him by the Brahmins.

Note: The monkeys mentioned here as comprising Rama's army, were not ordinary monkeys. They were in fact greatly powerful demigods who appeared on this earth to assist the Lord in his pastime of subduing this atheistic demon, Ravana. Note: There are 4 ages, or yugas, rotating through time like the 4 seasons: Satya, 1,800,000 yeas long; Dvarapa, 1,200,000 years long, Treta, 800,000 years long and Kali, 432,000 years long. In this most recent yuga cycle, the Dvarapara and Treta yugas were reversed. This event took place about 2 million years ago. Ram Sethu: Scientific evidence of ancient human activity Ram Sethu ( called Adam's Bridge by the British ) which is seen as one of Hinduism's holiest sites, is an ancient chain of shoals that once linked India's southern areas to Sri Lanka's northwest. It is being destroyed by the Sethu Samudram Shipping Canal Project (SCCP) to create a navigable waterway in the narrow sea dividing the two countries. By S. Kalyanaraman copyright© 2004 Bharat Prakashan(Delhi) Ltd. Scientific evidences point to human activity in ancient times on both sides of Ram Sethu as found by Deptt. of Earth Sciences and ocean technologists of Bharatam. This area should be declared a protected monument under the Protection of Monuments Act and declared as a World Heritage site by the Government of India and advised to UNESCO.

The Geological and geophysical survey of the Sethu-samudram Project clearly reveal that Rama’s bridge appears to be a major Geological feature. The surveys reveal that to the north of Ram Sethu on the Palk Bay side, the formation have undergone down faulting and the Ram Sethu came up as an up thrown block. This geomorphic feature is seem to be continuous and verified both by bathymetry survey and NASA land image.

One could clearly see that this is but a continuous feature with minor depressions upto about 100m width. In consonance with these things there are inter tidal marine sandy islands. These depressions and the islands appear to be neotectonic feature resulting in changes in bathymetry.

It is a well established scientific phenomenon that there has been a major glaciation period (ice age) with glacial maxima at about 18,000 years BP. This feature has been observed and studied in several parts of the world with the help of submerged Corals. During the glacial Maxima, the sea level was about 130m lower than what is today. This is evidenced both on the east and west coast of India, where submerged Corals occur around 1 to 2m water depths and they are clear indicators of near coastal zone.

The Ram Sethu ridge is a major marine divide. It separates the furious Bay of Bengal sea and sediments in the Palk bay and the very calm placid waters of the Gulf of Mannar. This ridge like feature is similar to the “Allaband” that was formed after a major earthquake in Arabian Sea in the early 19th century. In the Allaband, a long stretch of about 90km length and about 0.5 to 4km wide zone got uplifted because of a major tectonic event that was responsible for the earthquake. Since this event occurred in the recent past and such huge track of land was raised, people called that it is happened due to the will of Allah and named it Allaband.

The Ram Sethu is a similar feature but formed much earlier due to tectonic causes that were prevalent in these areas. However, during the last ice age (18,000 year BP) the entire area from India to Sri Lanka and further south and southeast were contagious land due to the highly lowered sea level. As and when there were major melting of glaciers both from the mountains as well as from the Antarctic area, the sea level was rising. These features were well recorded and studied by several submerged Coral formations all over the world. About 7,300 years BP the sea level in the southern part of India was about 3.5 m above the present level. This has been deciphered by Dr. P.K. Banerjee, who studied Corals that found in the land part as of Pamban, Rameswaram, and Tuticorin etc. Subsequently the sea level went down and rose +2m above than what is today between 5000 to 4000 years B.P.

The Geological logging of the bore holes drilled by NIOT in the inter tidal areas of Ram Sethu reveals very interesting details. In all the bore holes the top portion is seen to be occupied by recent marine sands. In almost of all the boreholes between 4.5 and 7.5m the borehole intersected hard formations, which have been found to be calcareous sand stones and corals. It is to be pointed out here that Corals are comparatively less dense, compact and somewhat easy to carry. The Corals normally grow atop compact to hard formations for the purpose of stability, and as the sea level rises, the Coral colony grows up vertically to maintain water depth of 1 to 2 m, which is essential for their survival. It is always observed that these Corals have continuous vertical growth like Lakshadweep, Andaman’s, and Gulf of Mannar Natural Park. These have always been found to grow on hard rock bottom. In the case of Ram Sethu area, we observe that the Coral formations hardly occur 1 to 2.5m in length and resting on loose marine sands. Most of these coral rock pieces are seem to be rounded pebbles of corals. These things appear to point these coral rock pieces and pebbles have been transported and placed in these areas.

Since the calcareous sand stones and Corals are less dense than normal hard rock and quite compact, probably these were used by the ancients to form a connecting link to Sri Lanka, on the higher elevations of the Ram Sethu ridge and this is analogous to modern day causeway.

In support of these observations there are many archaeological and geoarchaeological evidences on the south east coast of India around Rameswaram, Tuticorin and the western coast of Sri Lanka. There are raised Teri formations that supported a rich assemblage of mesolithic—microlithic tools indicating the presence of strong human habitation and activity in these areas as early as 8000 to 9000 years B.P and as recent as 4000 years B.P. On Sri Lanka side there are indications of human habitation extending to late Pleistocene (about 13,000 B.P) based on bone and fossils of human and animal form.

All these point to a flourishing human activity on both side of Adams Bridge and probably when the sea levels were just right the link between India and Sri Lanka could have been established.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Ghosts of Bar Harbor, Maine

Bar Harbor is one of America's favorite vacation spots. It also has a rich history, between its magnificent coastline and the colorful people who have chosen Mount Desert Island for their summer homes.

However, many of Acadia's residents close ranks rather than expose their many "visitors from the past" to the public. They would like their ghosts left alone, thank you very much.

We have just a few stories that we can share right now, and hope to expand this list in the future.

According to reader Jarrod, CleftStone Inn is haunted by two women who perished in a fire there, in 1947. These exhibit poltergeist-like manifestations: slamming doors, vases being thrown across the room, and so on.

In addition, the air feels heavy there, like you're in a slow-motion time warp. We've heard this kind of description before, and experienced it ourselves. Usually, this suggests ghosts more than poltergeists.

Jarrod also reports that, next door to the CleftStone Inn, the Blue Nose Inn is reportedly "cursed." It's burned to the ground three times so far.

Sure, it's almost a cliche, but we're informed that there's a haunted corner in the Bar Harbor Funeral Home. It has a white orb of light, and you can almost see it in your mind as well, if you step into that corner. The maids avoid dusting near it.

The site around Jesuit Springs is supposedly haunted by the eight Jesuit missionaries who were killed there in 1613, by English artillery. Their white shapes are seen at night, boats disappear (last reported: 16' skiff of the Colby family, 1975), and a man in brown robes carrying a cross has been seen in a ghostly boat nearby.

Not everything in Bar Harbor, Maine is as it appears; when the spooky shadows of the night roll in the undeceased appear. Some of the departed won't stay underground in this settlement. Doubters don't have faith in the local spirit reports, but creepy things sure occur here in Bar Harbor during the moonlight hours.

These are some of the spooky things that have happened here recently.

The ghost of a bound up gentleman can be spotted very frequently looking for a woman right by Acadia National Park. Regardless of what folks exclaim, it's a chilling ghost that is preferably not disturbed.

The phantom of a street bum has once in a while been perceived standing by a wild road close to Bar Harbor.

The ghost of a youthful woman drenched in blood is from time to time noticed sobbing by Great Meadow.

The ghost of an old witch has been said to have been witnessed on numerous occasions riding on a bicycle on a shady road near Bar Harbor.

A gentleman with a sizeable hole through his upper body can once in a while be noticed on the water's edge of Beaver Dam Pond gazing. A woman who lives here alleges that this ghost gets pleasure from startling foolish folks who have the courage to disturb the calm in Bar Harbor.

A female's body having a horse's head is regularly perceived studying Bald Rock Ledge in detail late in the night. One thing's for guaranteed, it in all certainty is a scary ghost that you wouldn't wish to bump into before sunrise.

A semi rotten human dead body has supposedly been witnessed on a handful of occasions attempting to grip something by The Bluffs.

source 1 2

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Teresa Fidalgo, the Portuguese "White Lady"

A White Lady is a type of female ghost purported to appear in many rural areas, and who is supposed to have died or suffered trauma in life. White Lady legends are found around the world. Common to many of them is the theme of losing or being betrayed by a husband or fiancé. They are often associated with an individual family line, as a harbinger of death. When one of these ghosts is seen it indicates that someone in the family is going to die, similar to a banshee.

Generally, the aspects of this phenomena are that the ghost is female, dressed in late era Victorian garb, seen along a rural road, and associated with some local legend of tragedy.

This is a re-enactment of a bizarre car accident caused by a spirit in Sintra Portugal.

At approximately 4mins 20seconds, the group of teenagers stopped to pick up a stranger on the road, that’s when the strange chain of events started acting up.

During that short ride after Teresa boarded the car, she actually told them she was killed in an accident 2 years ago but they didn’t believe her. Thereafter she pointed to the exact spot where she claimed she was killed before reverting to her true form.
She suddenly turns to the camera and screams, showing her face, which is now apparently badly scarred and bloody and vanishes immediately. The car, according to reports, flipped on its side, killing two of the travelers.

The video David made is dated 2003. Three years later there’s another car accident on that stretch of road on April 2006.

Tiago end Tânia died in this accident. David survived but he never could explain what really happened in that night...

Some bizarre facts:

- 2 years before the real victims of this accident met this spirit, there were actual police records, which depict another fatal accident, involved this girl by the name of Teresa Fidalgo back in 1983

- Although this video was only a re-enactment of the actual accident, for some unexplained reason, the frames somehow ‘jumped’ and went out of focus whenever the camera was focused on the girl who played Teresa’s role in that actual accident. Also notice that when the girl who played Teresa pointed to the road ahead, that particular streetlamp directly above was put out

- In the actual accident, police authorities found a DV camera recording, which is 13-14 minutes long, which shows what had actually taken place before the accident

- In the actual investigations, the police later released that the car crash had never hit anything it just flipped over without any actual explanation and coincidentally that very same streetlamp, which was taken out during this re-enactment

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Flying Dutchman

If you have heard of Captain Jack Sparrow in relation to At World's End, chances are you have at least heard the name, "Flying Dutchman". Although the movie gives scant detail of the actual legend, it does play it out at least in part. More than just the magnificent brainchild of screenwriters and the "magicians" at Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), the Flying Dutchman has roots in folklore as old as the pirates themselves-perhaps much older.
In keeping with "campfire ghost stories", the legend of the Flying Dutchman is one of those stories that crews might pass along during a nerve-itching fog or in waters where veteran sailors may have warned of horrendous beasts and ghosts of shipwrecked sailors. True maritime mysteries like the Marie Celeste would-in their day-only add to the mystique and fear of the Flying Dutchman's reputation. Like many legends, the story of the Flying Dutchman has many versions, all with certain similarities. Those similarities, in turn, share some commonality with legends and myths that precede it. As an overall principle, the legend states that the Flying Dutchman is a ghost ship that serves as a warning of impending tragedy. The first of such legends was written in 1795, when Irish pickpocket George Barrington wrote Voyage to Botany Bay. According to his report, sailors told a story of a Dutch Man-of-War (a type of ship) lost at sea during a horrendous storm. That same ship was later imagined to harrass and wreck other ships in bouts of ghastly fog. A suspected personage for the ship's captain was Bernard Fokke, a captain known for what some would call "devilish" speed on trips from Holland to Java. Some quite seriously postulated that Fokke was aided by the Devil, and thus he became ideal for the legend of the Flying Dutchman. Others claim to have seen the ship at the Cape of Good Hope, and the tutor of Prince George of Wales claimed to have seen the ghost ship near Australia in the late 19th century.
Despite the descriptions of ghoulish glows and the like, scientists have offered a more, well, scientific explanation. Called Fata Morgana (named for the legendary sorceress half-sister of King Arthur), the mirage would occur when warm air rested (in calm weather) right above dense, cold air near the surface of the ocean (though the effect also takes place on the ground in mountainous regions). The air between these two masses acts as a refracting lens, which will produce an upside-down, distorted image of the upright object within these masses of air. Even though a ship may be beyond the horizon, the observing ship may see an inverted, blurry image of the "mirage ship". The mirage ship could appear several times larger than its actual size, it may appear much closer, and the colors (due to the sun's position) may be distorted.
Despite modern scientific explanations, legends of the Flying Dutchman serve to stimulate the imaginations of sailors, movie audiences, authors, and others in the creative arts. Like the headless horseman of Sleepy Hollow or the creatures of The Village, such legends can serve to entertain us or frighten us into submission. Unlike Pirates of the Carribean, very few of the tales of the Flying Dutchman involve a giant sea beast, but instead serve as a warning of coming disaster. Whatever their intent at their advent, such tales-as benign as they seem in the modern world of scientific explanations-serve well to keep even the most veteran sailors on the lookout for true-to-life maritime dangers.

Flying Dutchman, Selected Sightings

While most people agree the “history” of the ship is a legend, the Flying Dutchman has been sighted by reliable witnesses. All of these were in the Cape of Good Hope. Lighthouse keepers reported seeing her.
  • 1823: Captain Owen, HMS Leven, recorded two sightings in the log.
  • 1835: Men on a British vessel saw a sailing ship approach them in the middle of a storm. It appeared there would be a collision, but the ship suddenly vanished.
  • 1881: Three HMS Bacchante crewmembers, including King George V, saw the ship. The next day, one of the men who saw it fell from the rigging and died.
  • 1879: The SS Pretoria’s crew saw the ghost ship.
  • 1911: A whaling ship almost collided with her before she vanished.
  • 1923: Members of the British Navy saw her and gave documentation to the Society for Psychical Research, SPR. Fourth Officer Stone wrote an account of the fifteen minute sighting on January 26th. Second Officer Bennett, a helmsman and cadet also witnessed the ship. Stone drew a picture of the phantom. Bennett corroborated his account.
  • 1939: People ashore saw the Flying Dutchman. Admiral Karl Doenitz maintained U Boat crews logged sightings.
  • 1941: People at Glencairn Beach sighted the phantom ship that vanished before she crashed into rocks.
  • 1942: Four witnesses saw the old ship enter Table Bay, then vanish. Second Officer Davies and Third Officer Montserrat, HMS Jubilee, saw the Flying Dutchman. Davis recorded it in the ship’s log.
  • 1959: The Straat Magelhaen nearly collided with the ghost ship.

The Legend

The legend of The Flying Dutchman is said to have started in 1641 when a Dutch ship sank off the coast of the Cape of Good Hope: Captain van der Decken was pleased. The trip to the Far East had been highly successful and at last, they were on their way home to Holland. As the ship approached the tip of Africa, the captain thought that he should make a suggestion to the Dutch East India Company (his employers) to start a settlement at the Cape on the tip of Africa, thereby providing a welcome respite to ships at sea. He was so deep in thought that he failed to notice the dark clouds looming and only when he heard the lookout scream out in terror, did he realise that they had sailed straight into a fierce storm. The captain and his crew battled for hours to get out of the storm and at one stage it looked like they would make it. Then they heard a sickening crunch - the ship had hit treacherous rocks and began to sink. As the ship plunged downwards, Captain VandeDecken knew that death was approaching. He was not ready to die and screamed out a curse: "I WILL round this Cape even if I have to keep sailing until doomsday!" So, even today whenever a storm brews off the Cape of Good Hope, if you look into the eye of the storm, you will be able to see the ship and its captain - The Flying Dutchman. Don't look too carefully, for the old folk claim that whoever sights the ship will die a terrible death. Many people have claimed to have seen The Flying Dutchman, including the crew of a German submarine boat during World War II and holidaymakers. On 11 July 1881, the Royal Navy ship, the Bacchante was rounding the tip of Africa, when they were confronted with the sight of The Flying Dutchman. The midshipman, a prince who later became King George V, recorded that the lookout man and the officer of the watch had seen the Flying Dutchman and he used these words to describe the ship: "A strange red light as of a phantom ship all aglow, in the midst of which light the mast, spars and sails of a brig 200 yards distant stood out in strong relief." It's pity that the lookout saw the Flying Dutchman, for soon after on the same trip, he accidentally fell from a mast and died. Fortunately for the English royal family, the young midshipman survived the curse.

source 1 2 3

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Unit 731

In the midst of continuous denial by important members of the Japanese government individually or collectively that Japan was an aggressor in World War II, the planned exhibition of the Smithsonian Institute to commemorate the end of WWII in Asia has turned into an unusually fervid debate, with which an interest in discussing and writing on Japan's wartime atrocities has been aroused. Most prominent among numerous writings on the subject is "Japan Confronting Gruesome War Atrocity" penned by Nicholas D. Kristof and published inNew York Times on March 17, 1995. The article has given us a detailed account of the most shocking, heinous, cruel crime the civilized world has ever known: Japanese Unit 731 used human beings for vivisection in order to develop biological weapons. Equally unbelievable is that the United States has covered up the crime in exchange for the data on human experiments, an act utterly ignoring international laws and human justice. What a great irony to the lofty ideal of democracy and the so-called "American civilization" of the 20th century!

The shock created by Kristof's article has been felt primarily in the U.S. and a few Western countries. However, as early as 1949, the Soviet Union held a week long trial at Khabarovsk of the Japanese war criminals for biological warfare. Among those tried, 12 people were associated with 731, including General Yamada Otozo, Commander-in-Chief of the Kuantung Army, Lt. Gen. Ryuiji Kajitsuka, Chief of the Medical Administration, and Lt. Gen. Takaatsu Takahashi, Chief of the Veterinary Division, both in the Kuantung Army; Maj. Gen. Kiyoshi Kawashima, longtime head of Unit 731's production department; Maj. Gen. Shunji Sato, head of Unit 731's Canton branch; and Lt. Col. Toshihide Nishi, Major Tomio Karasawa, Maj. Maso Onoue, Lt. Zensaku Hirazakura, Senior Sergeant Kazuo Mitomo, Corporal Norimitsu Kikuchi, and Private Yuji Kurushima, all of Unit 731. The entire proceedings of the trial were published under the title "The Trial of Former Servicemen of the Japanese Army Charged with Manufacturing and Employing Bacteriological Weapons" by Foreign Language Publishing House, Moscow, 1950.

Since 1940, in Chinese theater, Ishii Shiro had led his Unit 731 to engage in biological warfare by attacking Ningpo, Chinhua, Chuchou of Chechiang province (during the Japanese-Soviet war at Nomonhan, Mongolia in the summer of 1939, Unit 731 was dispatched to the front to make bacterial assault). To retaliate the U.S. air raid of Tokyo led by Col. Doolittle in April 1942, from which over 60 U.S. airmen were rescued in Chechiang area, Japan launched a largescale mopping-up campaign, in which several hundred men from Unit 731 and its subsidiary Unit 1644 of Nanking took part. Early in November 1941, Unit 731 dispatched an airplane to spread bubonic plague at Changte, Hunan, which was verified by Dr. E. J. Bannon of American Presbyterian Church hospital at Changte. The event was well known to American and British intelligence agencies at Chungking and besides the Chinese government had fully informed the American and British government of it through its ambassadors Wellington Koo at London and Hu Shih at Washington. Chinese authorities had long learned that Japan used biological warfare against China and had repeatedly appealed to international communities for help. Before making their escape at the time of Japanese surrender, Japanese in Unit 731 set free scores of thousands of infected rats that caused widespread plague in 22 counties of Heilungchiang and Kirin provinces that took more than 20,000 Chinese lives. As the plague was well publicized in newspapers and periodicals, many Chinese became aware of Japan's employing biological warfare in China during the war. While the Korean was raging, North Korea and China accused the United States of using biological warfare that rekindled the public interest in probing Unit 73 1. Among thousands of Japanese prisoners of war (POW) repatriated from Siberia, some belonged to Unit 73 1. Together with those Japanese POWs then detained in China, they were tried in a special court at Shenyang (Mukden) in June 1956. Strikingly one of them was Ken Yuasa, the doctor mentioned in Kristof's article in the New York Times. Some others under trial included important members of Unit 73 1: Major Hideo Sakakihara who was in charge of Hailar branch of Unit 731 (there were four branches under Unit 731: Hailer, Sunwu, Linkou, and Mutanchiang), Dr. Yataro Ueda, Yukio Yoshizawa, Masauji Hata, etc. and also police affairs chief of the Kuantung Army Mibu Saito as well as many captains of Kempeitai (military police) who were responsible for providing Unit 731 with victims for vivisection (their oral and written testimonies were reprinted in a book entitled Chemical and Biological Warfares published by Chunghua Book Company in 1989).

Both chemical and biological warfares were banned by the Geneva Convention of 1925. Totally disregarding international laws and human morality, Japan employed poison gas bombs in the Wusung-Shanghai campaign at the beginning of the Second Sino-Japanese war in August 1937. But not until Japan dropped bacterial bombs at Changte, did President Roosevelt issue a strong statement of protest on June 5, 1942, warning against Japan by saying that if Japan continued to use poison gases or other forms of inhuman warfare, it would invite U.S. retaliation in full measure. It was about this time, U.S. started its own biological warfare research with the approval of Roosevelt, but that ever since has been kept secret from the public. Also kept from the public is the U.S. role in suppressing all efforts to put Unit 731 on trial in the Tokyo Trial and its subsequent cover-up. As a result, unlike hundreds of Nazi doctors who were duly tried and sentenced in accordance with the "crime against humanity," Ishii and members of Unit 731 have not been brought to justice.

In the United States, the first person who uncovered serious atrocities committed by Unit 731 and raised the issue of possible U.S. cover-up was John W. Powell, Jr. (who took over his father's publication, The China Weekly, at Shanghai, which was suspended in June 1953, followed by his return to America. After his return, he had suffered from inexorable persecution). In the October 1981 issue of Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, jointly with Gomer and Rolling, he published "Japan's Biological Weapons, 1930-1945." However, a detailed, book-length account of the Japanese biological warfare Unit 731 and U.S. cover-up had not been available until Peter Williams and David Wallace, two British journalists, published their book, Unit 731: Japan's Secret Biological Warfare in World War II (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1989; a translation was made by Tien-wei Wu and published by Academia Historica, Taipei, 1992).

On the foundation of the joint work of Williams and Wallace, Professor Sheldon Harris completed his monumental book, Factories of Death: Japanese Biological Warfare 1932-45 and The American Cover-up (New York: Routledge, 1994). This article will try to compare Harris's work with that of Williams and Wallace and see whether Harris has succeeded in solving those questions first raised by Williams and Wallace and what remains for further academic inquiries. Before making the comparison between the two works, this writer will first report on what has been regarded as new or unheard-of in Kristof s article. So far as atrocities committed by Unit 731 are concerned, the most shocking revelation made by Kristof may be: (1) without giving anesthetic to the victim, vivisection was performed by Unit 731 doctors; (2) even three-day old baby was used for experimentation; and (3) Japan planned to use biological warfare against the United States.

In December 1944, Japan started a balloon assault on the U.S. by sending about 200 balloon bombs, but not germ bombs, to the west coast, each 30 feet in diameter and 91 feet round. They caused the deaths of 7 people. The person taking charge of the investigation of the balloons was none other than Murry Sanders, the man who was first sent to Japan to investigate Unit 731. Forty years later, Sanders recalled:

The only explanation I had, and still have, is that Ishii wasn't ready to deliver what he was making in Pingfang; that he hadn't worked out the technology. If they had been, we were at Ishii's mercy. Moreover, Tojo had been the staunch supporter of Ishii and biological warfare. Dating back to his days as commander of Kempeitai of the Kuantung Army, Tojo was responsible for supplying Unit 731 with live experiment victims. Upon assumming premiereship in October 1941, Tojo personally presented an award to Ishii for his contribution to developing biological weapons and had a picture taken with him, which appeared in major newspapers. Unfortunately Tojo's responsibility for making biological weapons and using them was not charged at the Tokyo Trial. If Tojo indeed was opposed to using biological assault on the U.S. as Kristof believes, he did it probably not out of fear of U.S. retaliation rather than Japan's inability to deliver biological weapons.

Finally Kristof reports that one month before Japan surrendered, it still tried to send the "Kami kazi" suicide airplane with plague bombs carried by a submarine to attack San Diego on the west coast. Undoubtedly this is a piece of new information to fortify the belief that Japan on the eve of surrender still clung to a hope that the wheel of fortune might turn to its favor so as to escape the fate of unconditional surrender. The rest of Kristof s report was largely borrowed from the two books in question, which will be discussed in the ensuing pages.

I. The Origin of Unit 731

At the conclusion of World War I in 1918, the medical bureau of Japanese army set out to study biological warfare and assigned Major Terunobu Hasebe to head the research team, who was soon succeeded by Dr. Ito with a team of 40 scientists. This lasted a few years. However, the real beginning of Japan's biological warfare came only with the rise of Ishii Shiro. Ishii was graduated from the medical department of Kyoto University in 1920, and immediately joined the army. In 1924, he returned to Kyoto University for graduate studies, during which he married the daughter of President Torasaburo Akira of the University. He was awarded with Ph.D. in 1927. He rejoined the army and began to propagate biological warfare.

Harnessing the rising tide of Japanese militarism, Ishii rose to power which was redounded to three elements. First, in the name of a military attache, Ishii was sent to Europe in 1928. He pent the next two years in Europe and America to survey biological research in Western countries. After his return, he was promoted to major, and devoted himself to promoting research and manufacturing of biological weapons buttressed up by a theory that modem war could only be won by science and technology and that manufacturing biological weapons is most economical, particularly suitable for a country like Japan who is poor in natural resources. Second, Ishii found willing, powerful supporters in the army: Col. Tetsuzan Nagata, chief of military affairs; Col. Yoriniichi Suzuki, chief of lst tactical section of Army General Staff Headquarters; Col. Ryuiji Kajitsuka of medical bureau of the army; and Col. Chikahiko Koizumi, the Army's surgeon general (at the end of the war, he served as Minister of Public Health and comniitted suicide for fear of being prosecuted on war crimes), known as "father of Japanese chemical warfare; and the Minister of the Army and later as Education Minister Sadao Araki, leader of the "imperial way" faction in the Japanese army. Third, shortly after Ishii's return from Europe, a kind of meningitis erupted in Shikoku, for which Ishii designed his water filter which helped stop the spread of the disease, thereby making his name known, especially in the army where he became the most famous bacteriologist. In spite of all this, Ishii's greatest asset to his success probably lies in his lack of morality strongly required for a physician. He apparently excelled others in being sycophantic to his peers, while oppressive to his subordinates. Finally he was so lavish with money as he became a frequent, valuable customer of geisha houses.

Less than half a year after Japan launched the September 18 Mukden Incident in 1931, Japan occupied the whole of China's northeast or Manchuria. Ishii and Japanese military seized the opportunity to move the center for bacteriological research at the Army's Medical College established in 1930 to northern Manchuria for expansion with a view to making the Soviet Union the hypothetic enemy. A special advantage for this move was that the Kuantung Army could kill Chinese at will and provide for unlimited supply of human experiment materials. With Chinese lives at no cost, Japan could lead the world in biological warfare.

At the end of August, 1932, Ishii led a group of 10 scientists from the Army's Medical College to make a tour of Manchuria and came back with the decision to make Harbin the center biological research, while choosing a site at Peiyin River, 20 kilometers south of Harbin. to build a factory for human experiments. To confuse the public, Ishii's center inaugurated at the end of 1932 was sometimes called Kamo Unit and other times Togo Unit. Then Ishii was promoted to lieutenant colonel and the 1933 budget of Kamo Unit was a staggering some of 200,000 yen.

The year 1936 marked the establishment of two units by order of Emperor Hirohito: one was Ishii's unit (to the outside it was called "Epidemic Prevention and Water purification Department of the Kuantung Army," whose name was not changed to Unit 731 until 1941), which was to be relocated to a new base at Pingfan, 20 kilometers southwest of Harbin. The other was the Wakamatsu Unit (after the name of its commander Yujiro Wakamatsu, later changed to Unit 100) to be built at Mengchiatun, near Changchun; to the outside it was called Department of Veterinary Disease Prevention of the Kuantung Army. In June 1938, Unit 731 moved to its new location at Pingfang occupying an area of 32 sq. kilometers which was marked off as "no man's land." In the meantime, Ishii had a promotion to full colonel with 3,000 Japanese working under him.

Both the joint work of Williams and Wallace and Harris's new book based their accounts of the early history of Unit 731 upon the Fifty Year History of the Tokyo Amy Medical College (Tokyo, 1988); Seiichi Morimura, The Devil's Gluttony. 3 volumes (Tokyo, 1982-85); and Kei'ichi Tsuneishi's two books, The Germ Warfare Unit That Disappeared (Tokyo, 198 1) and with Tomizo Asano, The Bacteriological Warfare Unit and the Suicide of Two Physicians (Tokyo 1982). Both works made a thorough use of the Khabarovsk Trial, particularly the testimony give by Ryuiji Kajitsuka who himself was a physician and a bacteriologist. Also both were consulted with a posthumous work by Saburo Endo who was a colonel in the general staff of the Kuantung Army and made an inspection tour of Unit 731 in 1933. Harris's work had even consulted Endo's diary which was published in 1985. Both works confirm the amount of Unit 731's 1933 budget as 200,000 yen and that Emperor Hirohito decreed the establishment of the two biological warfare Units 731 and 100 in Manchuria.

II. U.S. Authorities Well Aware of Japan's Using Biological Warfare in China

As mentioned earlier, at the outbreak of the Wusung-shanghai campaign on August 13, 1937 and in front of the watching eyes of the American and British navies and many Europeans and Americans, the Japanese army used poison gas against Chinese troops. In the succeeding eight years of war, Japan in 14 Chinese provinces had used poison gases for 1, 131 times.

In the book by Williams and Wallace, there is a translation of Chinese accusation of Japan's dropping from airplane plague bacteria at Changte, Hunan, submitted by Chinese Ambassador to London Wellington Koo to the British government and the Conunittee for the Pacific War which reads:

On at least five occasions during the first two years the Japanese armed forces have tried to employ bacteriological warfare in China. They have tried to produce epidemics of plague in Free China by scattering plague-infected materials with airplanes. These five times are: October 4, 1940, when Japanese airplane dropped plague bacteria at Chuhsien in Chechiang province which caused the deaths of 21 people. On the 29th of the same month, Japanese airplane spread plague bacteria at Ningpo, Chechiang which caused the deaths of 99 people. On November 28 of the same year, Japanese airplanes dropped a large quantity of germs at Chinhua but no death was reported. In January 1941 Japan spread plague germs in Suiyuan and Ninghsia provinces and again in Shansi that caused serious epidemic outbreaks of plague in these areas.

Not that the U.S. was not aware of the fruitful research on biological warfare the Japanese had accomplished. However, she did not take the Japanese biological program seriously, Harris believes, simply because Japan was far away from U.S. homeland and could not launch a massive attack on America and also because Japanese being Asian were incapable of developing sophisticated biological weapons without the help of white men. In the August 1942 Rocky Mountain Medical Journal , there appeared a lengthy article under the heading "Japanese Use the Chinese as 'Guinea Pigs' to Test Germ Warfare."

With increasing number of Japanese prisoners of war captured in the South Pacific, the U.S. found out that not only was Japan engaged in significant Biological research; its program was on a far larger scale than previously suspected. Americans then knew that Tokyo was the center for biological experimentation and that Ishii was the forerunner of Japanese biological warfare with his epidemic prevention and water purification headquarters at Harbin. Also known to the Americans, mainly from Japanese naval sources, were the size of Unit 731 and germ bombs being manufactured.

Not until September 1943, did the U.S. begin its own research on biological weapons with Lt. Col. Murry Sanders, a young bacteriologist, heading the program and with Camp Detrick in Maryland as its base. Although the United States was almost four years behind England in biological warfare research, its program grew rapidly and was capable of mass production. For instance, a spoonful botulinus toxin multiplied to fill the vat in 72 hours, to produce enough poison to destroy 50,000 or more men. The most successful experimentation achieved by Detrick was the virus being freeze-dried that could be delivered to the enemy's territory. It is natural that American scientists wished to acquire the fruits of Unit 73 I's research.

III. The Deal Between the United States and Former Members of Unit 731

Only one week after Japan surrendered, Col. Sanders was among the first group of Americans to land in Japan. His mission was to locate as soon as possible the Japanese biological warfare machine and Ishii himself. In the next three months, Sanders had interrogated many

important military leaders and Scientists of Unit 731, notably Yoshijiro Umezu, Chief of the Army General Staff and erstwhile Kuantung Army Commander-in-Chief, Ishii's deputy Col. Tomosa Masuda, germ bomb expert Major Jun'ichi Kaneko, but not Ishii himself.

Upon his arrival in Japan, Sanders was immediately under the deception of his interprete Lt. Col. Ryoichi Naito. He was a student of Ishii at the Tokyo Army Medical College. When serving as assistant professor at the college in 1939, Naito was sent to America. His mission was to get yellow fever strain from the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research in New York, which was refused. Later at Pingfang, he became the right-hand man of Ishii. Eager to secure the experiment data of Unit 73 1, Sanders approached General Douglas MacArthur saying: "My recommendation is that we promise Naito that no one involved in BW will be prosecuted as war criminal." The recommendation was readily accepted by MacArthur. By September, Sanders discovered that Unit 731 was involved in human experiments and he took the issue to MacArthur whose response was, "We need more evidence. We can't simply act on that. Keep going. Ask more questions. And keep quiet about it."

Sanders spent only ten weeks in Japan and was ordered home. The second stage of investigation was taken over by his Detrick colleague Lt. Col. Arvo T. Thompson, a veterinarian. After his return, Sanders was protracted to tuberculosis and invalid for the next two years, having forever lost the chance to come back to Japan to renew the investigation of Unit 73 1. Forty year later, he told Williams and Wallace:

I talked to Arvo Thompson [who committed suicide in 1948] who was to carry of the next stage of the investigations. And I remember telling "Tommy" Thompson about the anthrax bomb and the experiments on the human beings. I told him specifically to look the anthrax experiments and the Uji bomb. When Col. Thompson arrived in Japan, the International Military Tribunal for the Far East just began the trial of Japanese Class A war criminals. In the meantime, Maj. Gen. Kitano, Commander of Unit 731 from August 1942 to March 1944, was brought back to Japan from China to face interrogation. Though Ishii was declared dead in newspapers and a mock funeral was held in Ishii's home town, he was available for Thompson's interrogation which was to last from January 17 to February 25, 1946. Ishii's tactics of resistance was to speak as little as he could and minimize the magnitude of biological warfare research as much as possible. He admitted neither human experiments nor Emperor Hirohito's involvement and instead took the entire responsibility upon himself. Yet sometimes he boasted of his knowledge of biological warfare, for which he could have written many volumes. Like Sanders before him, Thompson was fooled. He finished his investigation report at the end of May 1946, augmenting knowledge on manufacturing germ bombs and technique of mass production of germs achieved by Unit 73 1.

Taking a hint from MacArthur, Chief Prosecutor of the Tokyo Trial Joseph B. Keenan (a Democrat politician from Ohio) suppressed the Soviet accusation against Japanese biological warfare criminals. Maj. Gen. Charles Willoughby, MacArthur's intelligence chief, was in charge of the whole affair of Unit 731, shielding its former members from any outside contact in order to avoid any research data on biological warfare fallen into the Soviet hands. Despite the fact that Lt. Col. Thomas H. Morrow (a lawyer from Ohio) of International Prosecution Section of the Tokyo Trial and David N. Sutton, head of its Document Division, made a trip to China to collect evidenc on Japanese waging biological warfare in China, during the afternoon of August 29, 1946 no sooner was the Unit 731 case raised than it was dropped. MacArthur was empowered "to approve, reduce or otherwise alter any sentence imposed by "the International Military 'Tribunal the Far East." Chief Prosecutor Keenan, though deriving his powers from the US government, handed control of the whole International Prosecution Section to MacArthur.

Williams and Wallace have ascribed the whole deal--that Ishii and members of Unit 731 were exonerated from being sued for war crimes in exchange for their human experiment data, a price paid by several thousand lives, most Chinese but some Soviets, Koreans, and Mongolians-largely to MacArthur. This is not quite true. Harris's new book has proved that U.S. scientists, mainly those from Detrick, were equally willing to make the deal, therefore bearing considerable responsibility.

In April 1947, General Allen Waitt, Commander of U.S. Chemical Corps, sent Camp Detrick bacteriologist Norbert Fell to Japan for investigation to assess the progress and level of achievement in biological warfare. To Fell, Ishii, Maj. Gen. Hitoshi Kikuchi, Col. Tomosada Masuda and Dr. Kan'ichiro Kamei, particularly the last mentioned, who earned a Ph.D. from Columbia University, had repeatedly expressed that more valuable data were forthcoming on condition of their immunity from war crimes. They insisted that verbal promise would not do. On May 5, 1947, MacArthur sent a radio message to Washington making the following recommendation:

Ishii states that if guaranteed inmmunity from "war crimes" in documentary form for himself, superiors and subordinates, he can describe program in detail ... Complete story, to include plans and theories of Ishii and superiors, probably can be obtained by document immunity to Ishii and associates. The above message put the State-War-Navy Co-ordinating Conunittee at Washington into crucial dilemma. Its sub-committee for the Far East did not complete its report on MacArthur's May 6 recommendation until August 1, and in the report a comparison of Nazi scientists and doctors as war criminals was drawn:

Experiments on human beings similar to those conducted by the Ishii group have been condemned as war crimes by the International Military Tribunal for the trial of major Nazi war criminals in its decision handed down at Nuremberg on September 30, 1946. This Government is at present prosecuting leading German Scientists and medical doctors at Nuremberg for offenses which included experiments on human beings which resulted in the suffering and death of most of those experimented on. Ironically, the conclusion the Committee for the Far East reached was: "The value to the U.S. of Japanese BW data is of such importance to national security as to far outweigh the value accruing from war crimes' prosecution." In spite of the State Department strongly dissenting as such a course would be a violation of international laws and detrimental to human morality and once revealed, it would be a source of serious embarrassment to the United States, the SWNCC accepted MacArthur's recommendation and decided that "the BW information obtained from Japanese sources should be retained in 'top secret' intelligence channels and not be employed as war crimes evidence" and not be fallen into the Soviet hands. However, the formal reply to MacArthur's recommendation had dragged on until March 13, 1948, when the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff sent his cable of approval to Tokyo.

From Sanders's first investigation in the autumn of 1945, MacArthur acceded to granting immunity to members of Unit 731 in exchange for data of research on biological warfare. He also inculcated on Sanders to keep silence on "human experiments." And the belated reply from the Joint Chiefs to MacArthur's May 6, 1947 recommendation can only be construed on broad background. First, the Cold War between the U.S. and the Soviet Union began with Winston Churchill's March 1946 speech that the "iron curtain" was lowered in Eastern Europe, followed by Marshall's commencement speech at Harvard University next June which promised U.S. aids for rehabilitation of Western Europe. Then there was the Berlin blockade by the Soviet Union in June 1948, thus having constituted nearly 40 years of Cold War. Only viewed against this background, an we understand why the United States tried its utmost to get ahead in the biological warfare.

The second element which is also related to the first is that the granting of immunity from war crimes of Unit 731 fell in the province of MacArthur's authority. Then he was virtually a "super emperor of Japan." For the expediency of his rule in Japan or for his love for the Japanese that had been generated, by 1947 MacArthur had lost his interest in pursuing the issue of war criminals and in making Japan to pay war reparations to the victimized nations, particularly China. Just as Fell once said in connection with MacArthur Headquarter's secret funding for Unit 731: "The feeling of several staff groups in Washington, including G-2, is that this problem is more or less a 'family' affair in FEC [Far East Command]." Hence that Washington respected MacArthur's opinion was rather natural.

IV. U.S. Prisoners of War Used for Experiment by Unit 731 and the Issue of American Use of Biological Warfare in Korean War

As early as January 6, 1946, the Pacific Stars and Stripes, an official organ of the U.S. Army, reported that Americans were among the victims of Ishii's human experiments. A week later, similar reports was ensued in New York Times, hence news about Allied prisoners of war to have been used as human guinea pigs were sporadically divulged. An U.S. government document dated August 1947 has this to say:

It should be kept in mind that there is a remote-possibility that independent investigation conducted by the Soviets in the Mukden area may have disclosed evidence that American prisoners of war were used for experimental purposes of a BW nature and that they lost their lives as a result of these experiments. Until 1956, the Federal Bureau of Investigation continued to accept as fact that U.S. prisoners of war were used in human experiments. In the 1960s, the issue no longer riveted the public interest. In 1976, Japanese television broadcast a documentary entitled "A Bruise-Terrors of the 731 corps," which rekindled the public interest which grew apace in America in the 1980s. Out of 1,485 Allied white prisoners of war taken to Mukden, 1, 174 were Americans. In their first winter (1942-43) at Mukden, 430 perished, most Americans. No matter how desperate American survivors from Mukden, like Gregory Rodriquez of Oklahoma, tried to tell how they were used by Unit 731 for human experiments, an accusation verified by Naoji Uezono, former member of Unit 731, U.S. Congress turned a deaf ear , thereby being irresponsible for paying their medical benefits and compensations. A British Major Robert Peaty kept a diary while detained in Mukden that gives sufficient evidence of Unit 731's using Allied prisoners of war as guinea pigs. Another Australian doctor R. J. Brennan also kept a diary, indicating that how the prisoners of war underwent experimentation. What bothered him most was one day 150 American prisoners were forced to march out of the camp, from which they never returned.

For over ten years, Rodriquez's son has persistently lobbied in Washington on behalf of his father and other survivors from Mukden. Not only does he ask for compensations to the victims; moreover he wants that the crimes of Japan using the prisoners of war for human experiments be known to the world. He told this writer that there is a former Mukden prisoner now living in Oklahoma who was taken to Pingfang, Harbin. The chapter "BW Experiments on Prisoners of War?" of Harris's new book has given great details, but had some discrepancies in figures. Also it is hard to accept his conclusion. He says that death rate at Mukden Camp was about 12 percent, almost all being Americans. Both Jack-Roberts of the royal Army Medical Corps and Frank James, a sergeant in the U.S. signal Company, confirmed that in that first winter, 430 men died. In the August 6, 1943 entry of Major Peaty's diary, "there are now 208 dead"; in the November 21, 1943 entry, "there are now over 230 dead." 430 plus 230 have made 44 percent of the Mukden POW population. Further, how many more deaths would have been in the next two years!

According to Harris's tally, there were only 238 POW dead at Mukden Camp and 1,617 survivors, figures which are far apart from those given by former British and American POWs at Mukden. His conclusion is that "American POWs may have been victims of BW tests, but there is no substantive evidence to prove that the experiments took place at Camp Mukden."

It is unthinkable that Harris wrote only two pages on the issue of U.S. using biological warfare in the Korean War, which he apparently did not want to talk about; in contrast, Williams and Wallace used 51 pages, one-sixth of the whole book dealing with the subject. China and North Korean began to accuse the United States of using CW and BW on March 5, 1951, a campaign which was stopped only with the conclusion of the war in 1953. Most importantly, International Science Committee composed of renown "Leftist" scientists sent a delegation to China and North Korea, whose investigation lent support to the accusation. This writer would take issue with Professor Harris for his using the term "Leftist." Could we ask: Is J. Robert Oppenheimer, "father of atomic bomb" also labeled Leftist scientist? Does being Leftist make one non-scientific? And then how about "Rightist" scientist? The six that came to China and North Korea included Dr. Joseph Needham who just died last March. Needham's studies of Chinese culture (he had studied the history of Chinese science and technology for over fifty years) and his concern for China had won esteem of Chinese intellectuals both in Taiwan and the Mainland, who would not question the results of his investigation and regard them as propaganda. Harris believes that the issue of American use of biological warfare cannot be clarified until archives of all countries concerned are open. Surely we hope this can be realized soon, but at the same time should point out that the release of more archival materials cannot overthrow a scientific investigation already made.

Also, Harris tried to water down the issue of confession given by U.S. airmen under captivity. Col. Frank H. Schwable was the chief of the First Marine Air Wing. After having been captured, Schwable and Major Roy Bley made "confessions" stating that "the joint Chiefs of Staff had directed U.S. forces to carry out planned germ warfare and that the order was part of a directive given to General Ridgway in October 1951" (New York Times, February 23, 1953).

At least as important as Schwable were Col. Walker F. Mahurin, World War II fighter ace and an assistant executive to US Secretary for Air Finletter, and Col. Andrew J. Evans, a former secretary to Air Chief of Staff Vandenberg. Before coming to Korea, Mahurin was commander of the First Fighter Interceptor Group in California which supplied men and equipment to the 51st and 4th fighter wings near Seoul. After being released, Mahurin was elected as spokesman for all POW fliers. All the 25 airmen who made confession under captivity had repudiated their confessions and denied BW charges. But Mahurin wrote his memoirs (Honest John published by Putnam of New York without date) which reveals and contradicts some of his sworn repudiation to his confession.

Any fair-minded person would not believe that the United States had tried to unleash a large-scale biological warfare in the Korean war. Needham said in reminiscence:

I felt then, and still feel, that attacks using toxic aerosols would have been far more dangerous, but I think the Americans just wanted to see what degree of success could be obtained with the essentially Japanese methods. My judgment was never based on anything which the downed airmen had said, but rather entirely on the circumstantial evidence. As a matter of fact, over the issue of whether or not the United States was engaged in biological warfare, irrefutable evidence is still lacking; hopefully it could be resolved in the near future. Should it then prove that the U.S. indeed used biological warfare, one would not be surprised. Let us bear in mind that at his November 30, 1950 news conference, when asked "Does mean that there is active consideration of the use of the atomic bomb?" President Truman said: "There has always been active consideration of its use. I don't want to see it used. It is a terrible weapon."

V. Conclusion

The new work on Unit 731 by Harris as the joint work by Williams and Wallace certainly reflects years of studies, traveling for collecting archival materials which had long been closed and conducting interviews with former members of Unit 731 and others involved who otherwise would have kept silence on the sensitive issues of Japanese biological warfare and American cover-up. Despite the fact that the two works have not solved all the questions such as Japan's plan for using biological weapons to stop the invading Soviet army north of the Yalu River and to repel the landing of U.S. forces in Kyushu in the south, they together have given us a thorough understanding of the developments of Japanese and American biological warfare and how the immunity from war criminal charges granted to Ishii and members of Unit 731 had been done. Undoubtedly the two books combined represent a breakthrough in scholarship and have made a great contribution to the general public.

As in any excellent work, it is easy to carp some criticism, both works have made insufficient references to Chinese sources. Since Unit 731 caused a terrible havoc to the Chinese people, information about which has largely been found in Chinese materials. For instance, in the collection entitled Selected Archival Meterials of Japanese Imperialist Aggression against China: Biological Warfare and Poison Gas Warfare (Beijing: Chunghua Book Company, 1989), there are testimonies given by scores of members of Unit 731 and people aasociated with it are invaluable source materials. For the celebration of the 50th anniversary of China's victory in the War of Resistance against Japan, a comprehensive work treating the subject of Japanese biological warfare against China will make its appearance. Still, crucial to our knowledge of Unit 731 are Japanese sources. Recently a few former members of Unit 73 1, regardless of the pressure from the Japanese government, resolutely came out and gave their witnesses to truth and history and for their posterity. It is anticipated that what remain to be riddles of Unit 731 will soon be revealed to the world.