My Dad the U.S. China Marine

My Dad the U.S. China Marine

Monday, June 21, 2010

New York Times Picture: 1st Marines Enter Tianjin for Japanese Surrender

This is a section of a larger printed photo celebrating the 170th anniversary of the founding of the U.S. Marine Corps. The clipping is in one of my father’s albums. This morning I found this same picture in the Wednesday, October 17, 1945 (page 6) edition of the New York Times.

The picture is of the 1st Marine Division marching into Tianjin (Tientsin) on September 30, 1945. On October 6 Japanese forces surrendered in that city.

The following is a New York Times story that was published on Sunday, September 30, 1945 on page 32, column 2:

U.S. Marines Land at Tientsin
TIENTSIN, China, Sunday, Sept. 30 (AP)

The veteran American First Marine Division landed today near this teeming political hotbed of North China where Chinese Nationalists and Communists have been at loggerheads.

Officially the Americans went ashore at Tientsin's harbor of Taku to help Chiang Kai-shek's troops dsarm and repatriate thousands of Japanese soldiers and civilians.

Marine and naval officers of the Seventh Amphibious Force, which brought the marines here, carefully refrained from terming the landing an occupation, pointing out that the troops were here to assist the Nationalist forces.

The Americans may get out of North China as soon as Generalissimo Chiang can get enough troops from the south to take full contgrol. But it is likely the burden of disarming the Japanese may fall on the Americans the first few months.

The Americans will take under protective custody United States nationals, property and records; liberate and care for an estimated 2,900 Allied prisoners of war and civilian internees in the Peiping-Tientsin area; keep close watch on an estimated 232,000 Chinese puppet troops north of the Yangtze and south of the Great Wall; arrest all war criminals, and feed, house and guard 200,000 or more Japanese civilians either in North China or pouring in from Russian areas and Inner and Outer Mongolia.

The marines are under the tactical command of Maj. Gen. DeWitt Peck, hero of the 1937 Shanghai Incident when he was a colonel in command of the Fourth Marine Regiment. With the division is marine Air Wing 1 under Maj. Gen. Claude A. Larkin. The overall command rests with Maj. Gen. Keller E. Rockey, commander of the Third Amphibious Corps.

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