The baron Takeichi Nishi ( Nishi Takeichi ) (July 12th 1902 - March 22nd 1945 (?)) was an officer of the Armée imperial Japanese woman, victorious of the Olympic Games of summer of 1932 with Los Angeles in horsemanship. He was a chief of tank to the Bataille of Iwo Jima and was killed with the combat on this island.
Its family and her first yearsNishi was born in the district from Azabu, with Tokyo. It is the third wire of Tokujirō Nishi, a danshaku (noble hereditary of fifth rank, title translates in general by " baron "). His/her mother is not married with Tokujirō and must leave the house shortly after the childbirth. His/her father occupies several high level positions with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and within the imperial private Conseil, which leads it to the post of ambassador in China of the Emperors of the Dynastie Qing during the Révolte of the Boxers.
Takeichi Nishi goes initially to the nursery school Gakushuuin and, during its elementary schooling, it is taken several times to be fought with the pupils of the elementary school close to Chiyoda. In 1915, it enters to Tokyo First Junior High School (now Hibiya High School) respecting the wish of his father on his bed of death; among his/her classmates appear Hideo Kobayashi, future criticizes literary of foreground and Hisatsune Sakomizu, which will become General secretary of the Government in 1945.
In September 1917, Nishi integrates the Military academy of the juniors by Hiroshima, one of the Japanese schools established on the Prussian model , and in 1920, it takes courses with the central Academy of the Juniors by Tokyo. It is accompanied there by Tsuji Masanobu, leader student of the Academy of Nagoya. In April 1920, it continues its studies for six months at the central School of the juniors, because of the reorganization of the military academies and it starts courses with the Japanese imperial Military academy. In the middle of these studies, it is attached to the 1st regiment of cavalry of Setagaya based with Setagaya, Tokyo. In 1924, it is graduate Academy, thirteenth on the nineteen students of its class, and, continuing its assignment with the 1st regiment of cavalry, it receives its diploma of the school of cavalry.
Uranus and Olympic GamesIn 1930, Nishi meets in Italy what will become its Cheval fetish, Uranus. The army refusing to pay for the horse, Nishi buys Uranus with its own funds. Nishi and Uranus are distinguished in various competitions through Europe. In 1932, 1st lieutenant Nishi and his horse take part in the Olympic Games of Los Angeles, where they gain the gold medal with the individual jump of obstacles. This one remains the only Olympic medal of Japan in a test of horsemanship. This victory bores even the general hostility which reigns then against Japan following the Incident of Moukden (September 18th, 1931) and of the invasion of the Mandchourie. The Westerners, in particular the Americans, know it like the Baron Nishi. It is also very popular among the Americans of Japanese origin, who suffer at the time of a strong social ostracism.
During its stay in Los Angeles, Nishi makes speak about him at the same time for its love about transfered into convertible through the city and for its participation in the crested circle of the film stars Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks. After the Olympic Games, it is affected with the 16th regiment of cavalry Narashino and promoted instructor at the regimental school.
Nishi and Uranus take part in the Olympic Games of Berlin in 1936, but the rider falls in the middle of the contest. The assumption is advanced that was done intentionally to support the country host, the Germany, with which Japan was to sign in 1940 the tripartite Pacte and to form the powers of the Axe. Indeed, in 1936, the gold medal of the individual jump of obstacles was gained by the Germany. After is that, Nishi affected at the department of the Subdivision (brigade?) Tokashi responsible for the provisioning of the military horses.
Years of war until Iwo Jima
During this period, Japan reduces its forces of cavalry and the shape of the regiments of Chars. Nishi is named ordering 26e regiment of Chars Mudanjiang , which is stationed in the north of the Mandchoukouo, the part of Mandchourie occupied by Japan, for defensive tasks. It is then promoted with the rank of lieutenant-colonel.
In June 1944, the 26e regiment is affected with the defense of Iwo Jima under the command of the lieutenant-general Tadamichi Kuribayashi. During its transfer, the boat is touched by torpedes drawn from the submarine US Cobia (SS-245) on July 18th, 1944. Although only two soldiers are killed, the 28 tanks are lost, so that they receive from them soon 22 in replacement.
Nishi briefly goes back to Tokyo in order to obtain the replacement of the tanks. During its stay, it borrows the car of Kawashima Daijiro, future directing Insurances Daihyaku (which will be repurchased by Manulife Financial), friendly near and heir to the Kawasaki industry group. As soon as it of on the occasion, it returns visit in Uranus, which remains with Bajiköen, with the stud farm Setayaga .
The battle of Iwo Jima
On Iwo Jima, in 1945, Nishi orders the 26e tank regiment in the Body Ogasawara (109e Division). He traverses the island, carrying his riding boots of mark Hermes and raising his favorite riding crop. The headquarters of the regiment, which was located close to the village of Maruman, is moved towards the oriental party of the island at the beginning of the battle. Because of the topography of the island, some of Chi-ha type97 and tanks type96 are dismounted and their turrets installed in sites strengthened in order to be used, in particular, against the American tanks Sherman M4.
Forces American, which knows that Nishi has a command at the enemy, diffuse each day of the calls so that it goes, ensuring that the world would regret the loss of the " baron Nishi". He never answers. The officer of the American information with which one owes this attempt is Sy Bartlett, of the 315e group of bombardment of Guam, which was to thereafter write the novel and the scenario of the film the iron man ( Twelve o' clock high ). In 1966, Bartlett will return visit to the widow of Nishi to Tokyo and will honor its memory with the Sanctuaire Yasukuni. The circumstances of died of Nishi remain unknown but are the subject of several concurrent assumptions. For one of it, it would have been encircled by the enemy forces in the morning of March 21st, 1945 and would have been killed by the fire of a machine-gun while it made movement towards the headquarters of the regiment. Another assumption is that its aide-de-camp and it would have given themselves death with their guns close to Ginmyösui or Futagoiwa. Another still that it would have been mortally burned by an American flame thrower on March 22nd or that it would have carried out an ultimate attack with several subordinates and would have died in the combat. Nishi was 42 years old.
Nishi will be promoted with the rank of colonel on a purely posthumous basis. His/her son Yasutoku Nishi (currently vice-president of the Association of Iwo-Jima) will succeed to him like danshaku . Yasutoku will be the only person born during the Period Shöwa with becoming danshaku , this title as well as other hereditary dignities having been abolished during the American occupation.
In film of 2006 Letters of Iwo Jima ( Letters from Iwo Jima ), Nishi is interpreted by Tsuyoshi Ihara. The film presents Nishi like a friend close to the Kuribayashi general, but there was actually an antagonism between them. Nishi was unaware of the prohibition of Kurikayashi to use the water, which was counted, to clean the tanks, as well as the orders to punish the soldiers who did it. Perhaps that resulted from their difference in education. At all events, the popularity (mainly in Japan) of the two men, like defenders of Iwo Jima, grows. An anecdote reported by Kakehashi Kumiko in the edition of February 2006 of the magazine Bungei Shunju is that in the last days of the battle, as the number of officers who refused to maintain their men in the caves increased, Nishi accepted that they can leave and fight together. In film of 2006, Nishi holds part of the thin medical provisioning to a wounded American soldier who it is questioning. The biography of Nishi by Öno Kaoru gives to believe that it is an actual fact. According to Öno, Nishi was the child of a medium high and privileged and, for better and for worse, sufficient experiment had not accumulated to apprehend subtleties of the human nature. Öno affirms that " little of anybody showed comprehension in its connection and that only Uranus had it compris".
Uranus died one week after Nishi, at the 25 years age. In 1990, its memory was commemorated with the Memorial of the horses of war of the Museum of History and the Folklore of Honbetsu on the island of Hokkaido.
References and other work(the English titles are a free translation of the Japanese original titles)
- Shiroyama Saburō, To die one Iwo Jima (硫黄島に死す), Shinchosha, 1984, ISBN 978-4101133164
- Ōno Kaoru, Disciple off Olympus: Why was the legend off Baron Nishi born? (オリンポスの使徒 “バロン西伝説はなぜ生れたか”), Bungei Shunju, 1984, ASIN B000J74FDC
- Futabashi Shingo (drawings by Kisaki Takashi), Dance with the Wind! Baron Nishi, the man who raced to the end off year will era (風と踊れ! 時代を疾走ぬけた男バロン西), 2003 comic published by Shueisha
- Baron Nishi: Olympic gold medal for Japan in 1932, Amateur Athletic Foundation off Los Angeles
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