Unit 731 Facts: Facts About Unit 731 in English

Here are some key facts about Unit 731:

  1. Unit 731 was a notorious branch of the imperial Japanese army that conducted experiments on Chinese civilians during the 1930s and 1940s.
  2. The unit was formed in Harbin, northeastern China, and conducted lethal experiments on an estimated 3,000 prisoners, primarily Chinese and Korean.
  3. The unit was officially known as the Kwantung army’s Epidemic Prevention and Water Purification Department.
  4. Unit 731 conducted experiments such as vivisection without anesthesia on prisoners after they had been deliberately infected with diseases like typhus and cholera. Some prisoners had limbs amputated or organs removed.
  5. Japan reluctantly acknowledged the existence of Unit 731 in the late 1990s but has refused to discuss its activities.
  6. Accounts of the unit’s activities have been built around testimony from former members, photographs, and documentary evidence.
  7. As Japan headed towards defeat in the summer of 1945, the unit’s leader, Lt. Gen. Shiro Ishii, forbade researchers from discussing their work and ordered the demolition of the unit’s headquarters.
  8. At the end of the war, US authorities secretly granted unit officials immunity from prosecution in exchange for access to their research.
  9. Several former Unit 731 officials went on to have successful careers in medicine, academia, and business.
  10. Japan recently disclosed the names of 3,607 members of Unit 731 in response to a request by a professor at Shiga University of Medical Science, marking a potential re-ignition of the public debate over Japanese atrocities committed in occupied China before and during World War II.

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