You mention in your article that a regiment of Chinese troops arrived in Rangoon at the late of January and early February 1942. May I ask which regiment of which division was this? I know that the 227th Regiment of 93rd Division entered Burma on 24th January 1942, but where and where to it was heading? To Bhamo? Toungoo? Rangoon?
A regiment of Chinese herald troops arrived in Rangoon around the turn of Jan and Feb even though Chiang Kai-shek agreed to British request for organizing expeditionary force on Dec 23rd 1941...
Thank you for these most excellent information, ahxiang. This are precisely the same type of information I am searching for "my" 93rd Division and their war against Thai Army in May-December 1942.
At Toungoo, Japanese encountered 200th Division of Chinese 5th Corps and suffered fierce resistance not seen after entering Burma. Beginning on March 17th 1942, Japanese began to bomb Toungoon [Tonggu]. Chinese army took over the defense positions from the British, dug three defense lines, defeated 20 rounds of Japanese attacks, destroyed 20 tanks and armoured vehicles, killed about 4000 Japanese soldiers, and captured alive 400. On 18th, Japanese followed the retreating British 2nd Brigade to the city. After destroying dozens of Japanese on March 18th, three companies of soldiers ambushed about 600-700 Japanese and four tanks at railway and highway bridges on 19th, and inflicted a death toll of 200 onto Japanese. Deputy Cavalry Regiment Chief Huang Zunxian sacrificed his life during the battle. On 20th, another ambush killed about 200 Japanese from 2nd da dui 143rd lian dui. On 22nd, 2000 Japanese mounted an attack at Chinese positions for two days. Among the Japanese dead would be a Japanese Taisa [colonel equivalent] from 55th Cavalry lian dui and a Japanese shosa [major equivalent] from 2nd da dui of 112nd lian dui. Dai Anlan repeatedly beat back Japanese by means of 100 meter wrestling fightings. By March 26th, Japanese intruded into the city defence line. Japanese reinforcements arrived on 28th. Division Chief Dai Anlan, with 9000 soldiers against 20,000 Japanese, persisted at Toungoon from March 16th to 29th before retreating to Pyinmana. Du Yuming mounted an unsuccessful siege of Tongoo and had to evacuate from Tongoo on 30th. At Yedashe, a few miles to the north of Toungoon, Liao Yaoxiang's 22nd Division of 5th Corps persisted from March 30th to April 15th. Facing Chinese frontal resistance, Japan changed direction to attack British on the left side and to attack Chinese in Loikaw on the right side.
So this confirms that the area east of Taunggyi and Loilem was under the command of 6th Army (Lt.Genral Gan Li-Chu), i.d. Kengtung (aka Jingdong). BUT.... Do you know the exact dispositions of Chinese force sin the Golden Triangle? How was 93rd Division redeployed in April and May 1942? Where was 277th Regiment? Where 278th and 279th Regiment? Who defended Kengtung on 10th May 1942 whe Thai army invaded the so-called Golden Triangle from the south (Chiang Mai)?
200th Division Chief Dai Anlan, with about 6200 soldiers, arrived at Loilem on April 29th, but was ordered to retreat instead of fighting against the Japanese. Dai Anlan received conflicting orders from Du Yuming and Lin Wei, with Du Yuming asking him to go back to 6th Corps at Katha while Lin Wei directed him to Jingdong [Kengtung, i.e., later Golden Triangle]to be subordinate to Corps Chief Gan Lichu.
What was Ta An Lan hoping to achieve by this? Why did he not select the route to Kengtung? Being in Loilem (east of Taunggyi) he was certainly closer to Kengtung than Katha? Bhamo is far north and he had to cross some most treacherous mountains and forest to reach it....
Dai Anlan made a strategic mistake in crossing the forests to the north. While crossing a highway near Bhamo on May 16th, 200th Division was surrounded by armoured Japanese. Two days later, on May 18th, Dai Anlan was wounded when he personally led 599th Regiment for a circumvential attack. Dozens of remnant soldiers rotated to carry Dai Anlan back to China on shoudlers. On May 26th, at Mengguan [Maobang], Dai Anlan passed away.
Also ahxiang do you have perhaps any map of General An-Lan's march?
I agree with Zhang Langping. I doubt Chinese lost as nearly as 80,000 troops in only two good months of campaign. Most casualties have been inflicted by nature not by the Japanese. Same was the case in the British-Indian army.
Out of 100,000 Chinese expedition forces, possibly 60,000 were lost. Zhang Langping, however, stated that 80,000 out of 100,000 might have retreated to India or China, with majority deaths related to starvation, disease, and going astray.
I thank you for this most detailed article, ahxiang! I also checked your excellent website. You are definately a very knowledgeable man about the Burma Campaign 1942, but even you don't say in your article anything about the actions of 93rd KMT Division in Shan States in May, June and July 1942. Didn't you find any information? The information I am looking for mainly concern general Lu Kuo Ch'uan's 93rd Division operations in Jingdong (Kengtung) respectively the so-called Golden Triangle?
Here is a short summary of the battles between Thais and Chinese in Shan States that I have prepared:
Now here is a brief summary of what the Thai Official Sources say about the Thai Invasion of Shan States in 1942:
- On 10th May 1942 the 2nd Thai Division began advance in the Shan States in two columns. The left column with two infantry regiments occupied without the opposition the towns of Mongmaeken, Monghang and Mongton and prepared for the attack on Mongsart. The right column comprised one infantry regiment which also arrived unopposed to the outskirts of Mongsart, the first vital objective of the Thai Campaign. The MONGSART had fallen to the advancing Thais on 23rd May 1942 from a retreating Chinese battalion. Which battalion was this? From 277th Regiment?!?
- The mission of the Thai 4th Division was to capture the market town of Mongphyak. The division made their first moves across the border on 10th May 1942. Once the division reached the small town of Ban Ongluek, it was split into two columns, one moving northeast and the other northwest. The town of Mongphyak on 20 May 1942, but mopping-up operations of Chinese pockets of resistance continued until May 23.
- The Thai Cavalry Division, protecting the left flank, reported a small skirmish with the Chinese of unknown strength at Ban Piengluang near the Monghang Pass. After ca. two hours of fightings the Chinese pulled back.
- The 3rd Thai Division crossed into the Burmanese border town of Tachileik on May 10, 1942. From there on the division advanced along the Mongko-Monglen-Mongphyak route on the heels of the 4th Division before breaking off at the approach to Mongphyak, where it was divided into three columns. On 24th May, at Loimwe, a small hilly village just south of Keng-Tung, the Thais came first under Chinese small arms fire. With the help of artillery and Royal Thai Air Force the Thais overcome the Chinese resistance and on 27th May, after Chiang-Kai-Shek ordered the 93rd Chinese Division to withdraw from the Kengtung area to Puén [???], across the border in China towards the end of May 1942 because the Japanese were pressing from the west. Some 100 Chinese soldiers were captured in Keng-Tung.
- After the capture of Keng-Tung the Thais turned to northeast to take the second biggest city in the Shan States, the trading capital Mongyawng. The town was defended (so say the Thai sources) by a single battalion of the 93rd Chinese Division. The battle lasted from 19th to 20th May 1942, when the Thais entered the city.
- Meanwhile the 3rd Thai Division renewed its advance. Capturing the village of Ban Taping on 10th June 1942, a Thai infantry battalion successfully forced a crossing at a point south of the Taping ford, but sustained heavy casualties due to the heavy Chinese resistance. The battalion ended up surrounded by superior Chinese forces some thirteen kilometres northeast of Ban Taping. Isolated, the force rapidly came under the attack and was annihilated. Battalion commander Major Yong was captured and later died in Chinese POW camp. The Thai attempts to save the encircled Thais proved unsuccessful. Do you know anything about this battle???
- The attempt to capture town of Mongma was repulsed. The Chinese held on, while Thai rertreated back due to heavy casualtiues.
- The 4th Division advanced to take Mongyu on the southern banks of the Lwoi River and accomplished its task wit minimal resistance.
- The Thai army renewed its offensive in December 1942 and January 1943 and during this campaign, not without some fierce Chinese resistance, managed to capture Mongwa, Mongpan, Chieng Khang, Mongla and Lwuang.
As I said I would very much appreciate if someone could tell me the Chinese version of this story. Which battalion was defending Mongsart in May 1942? Which battalion of the 93rd Division was defending in Mongyawng? Which Chinese unit carried out the attack on the Thais at Ban Taiping area?
Do you know what was happening in East Burma after Central and North Burma have been lost? The kernel of my interest lies in East Burma (Golden Triangle) between May 1942 - January 1943. Do you have anything about this? Have General GAN LI-CHU or LU KUO CH'UAN written any memoires after the war? or any veterans of the 93rd Division? Do you know who were the regimental commanders of 227th, 228th and 229th Regiment in April-July 1942? Which of them defended Jingdong (Kengtung) from 19th to 20th May 1942, when there was a battle going going between Thai and Chinese for Kengtung?
Thanks again for your reply.
Edited by hanibal, 19 February 2006 - 08:38 AM.