Hiroaki Takazawa, a professor at Japan’s Nihon University, found declassified US military documents. In them, he found data on the location of the remains of Japanese Prime Minister Hideki Tojo, who was hanged in 1948 by an international tribunal for war crimes. Until recently, this data was one of the biggest mysteries of the Second World War, the Associated Press reports.
According to the archives, the cremated ashes of Tojo, who initiated Japan’s entry into the war against the United States and the attack on Pearl Harbor, was scattered from an American army plane over the Pacific Ocean about 30 miles (50 kilometers) east of Yokohama, the second largest city in Japan, located south of Tokyo.
Professor Takazawa uncovered documents of Tojo’s 2018 death in the U.S. National Archives in Washington while investigating other war crimes trials. According to the scientist, Tojo and six others were hanged for war crimes by the International Military Tribunal in the Far East.
One of the recently released documents, dated December 23, 1948, contains the entry of Major Luther Frierson of the US Army. It reads: “I confirm that I received the remains, supervised the cremation, and personally scattered the ashes of the following people. Their ashes were thrown into the sea from the communications plane of the Eighth Army. “
The great-grandson of the warlord Hidetoshi Tojo told the publication that the absence of the remains of his ancestor was a humiliation for the family, so he is glad that this information was made public. “If his remains were at least scattered in Japanese territorial waters <...> I think he was lucky to some extent, ”said the great-grandson. According to Hidetoshi Tojo, he wants to “invite his friends and lay flowers to pay tribute to his great-grandfather.”
Hideki Tojo is a military leader and politician of the Japanese Empire. He took an active part in the discussion of Japan’s unleashing of the wars in the Pacific Ocean and in Southeast Asia. After Japan’s defeat in World War II at the Tokyo Trials of the International Tribunal in the Far East in 1946, he was recognized as a war criminal of the highest category. Sentenced to death, the sentence was carried out in December 1948.