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IJA Imperial Guards - 12/25/2018 5:56:39 PM   
el cid again

 

Posts: 16622
Joined: 10/10/2005
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I am surprised to report significant historical issues with stock
scenarios re such famous units. This may affect all mods based on them,
and certainly affected RHS.

Because almost everything Japanese is complicated, it is perhaps understandable
that confusion has crept in.

The Imperial Guards had origins in the 19th century, and were always based on
French military concepts, including their uniforms. In the 20th Century they
had formed a classical WW1 era "square" division of two brigades of two regiments
each (because with walking infantry, that is the largest formation which can go
from line of march to line of battle in a single day). But at the period just
before the Pacific War begins, these two brigades separated to fight in China, and
by the end of 1941, existed in the form of two organizations:

1) The Imperial Guards Division (in Indochina assigned to 25th Army)

2) The Guards Mixed Brigade (back in Tokyo in its traditional security role after
a period in China)

In June, 1943, both organizations renamed and reformed.

1) The Imperial Guards Division became the Second Imperial Guards Division.

2) A new regiment (the 6th Guards Regiment) formed, and this, plus an medium artillery
battalion and a few minor elements, folded into the Guards Mixed Brigade, turning it
into the First Imperial Guards Division.

In 1944, a 3rd Imperial Guards Division formed. It never left Japan.

Stock has a fictional 7th Guards Regiment. Only 9 regiments were formed. Eventually
the First Division had 1, 2 and 6 regiments, the Second had 3, 4 and 5 regiments,
and the Third had 8, 9 and 10 regiments. The reason for skipping 7 was to create the
impression there might be a larger force than there was.

Stock has a Guards Mixed Artillery regiment. This is more or less correct, but it cannot
easily be used. 2/3 of it is part of the Guards Mixed Brigade. 1/3 of it joins when
that unit becomes the First Imperial Guards Division. I handle this by making the
Guards Mixed Brigade subordinate to the First Imperial Guards Division (which does not
appear at start) and by creating a reinforced 6th Guards Regiment on the same date as
the First Division forms. That regiment has a (+) for reinforced, and includes the
additional artillery, a few AT guns, and a few extra support squads related to them. IF
one makes the artillery regiment separate, and combines that with the Guards Mixed Brigade,
one ends up with too much artillery. FYI the other two Guards division had artillery regiments,
but these were not mixed, and they do not appear as separate units in stock.






< Message edited by el cid again -- 12/25/2018 6:06:30 PM >
Post #: 1
RE: IJA Imperial Guards - 1/2/2019 8:20:40 AM   
Hrafnagud

 

Posts: 24
Joined: 12/9/2018
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Sources don't agree on whether there was ever a 7th Imperial Guards Regiment.

Leland Ness indicates that there was, in fact, a 7th Imperial Guards Regiment that was raised during May 1943. He indicates that the 1st Imperial Guards Division (ex-Guards Mixed Brigade) formed in Japan in May 1943 was, in fact, an understrength square division, composed of four infantry regiments (1st, 2nd, 6th and 7th Guards Infantry Regiments), a cavalry regiment and an artillery regiment. This seems to make organisational sense - the organisation of the Guards Mixed Brigade was retained (a brigade of two infantry regiments, the 1st and 2nd), a second brigade of a further two infantry regiments (the 6th and 7th) was added, and a new artillery regiment was raised in addition to the extant cavalry regiment.

Ness indicates that the 1st Imperial Guards Division was initially formed at a very low strength, with the infantry regiments only authorised 1,716 men apiece in two battalions (i.e., a total of eight infantry battalions - barely equal to three normal-strength infantry regiments). The newly-formed artillery regiment only authorised 1,031 men in two artillery battalions of three batteries each.

The initial five Guards Infantry Regiments that Japan started the war with were all A1 regiments, i.e., draft, and each composed of three infantry battalions. The 1st and 2nd Guards Infantry Regiments, therefore, had a total of six infantry battalions. I think what happened in May 1943 is that the 1st and 2nd Guards Infantry Regiments each shed one battalion to form the core of the new 6th and 7th Guards Infantry Regiments.

It is entirely possible that, in time, a ninth infantry battalion was then raised for the 1st Imperial Guards Division, at which stage the four two-battalion regiments were re-organised as three three-battalion regiments, at which point the 7th Imperial Guards Regiment became defunct, converting the 1st Imperial Guards Division to a triangular division.

If the above did happen, presumably this occurred after 6 July 1944 (which is when the 3rd Imperial Guards Division was raised, with the 8th, 9th, and 10th Guards Infantry Regiments).

The above seems to me a logical way to explain the numbering issue around the Guards Infantry Regiments, and the disagreement on whether the 7th Guards Infantry Regiment existed.

So presumably Japan starts the war with fifteen Imperial Guard infantry battalions across five regiments. In May 1943, this is expanded to seventeen infantry battalions across seven regiments. By July 1944, this is increased to 26 infantry battalions across ten regiments; it is assumed that Japan ends the war with 27 Imperial Guard infantry battalions across nine regiments.

(in reply to el cid again)
Post #: 2
RE: IJA Imperial Guards - 1/2/2019 1:09:03 PM   
el cid again

 

Posts: 16622
Joined: 10/10/2005
Status: offline
IF you want more confusion, I have found maps in a new book (The Invasion of Japan) which has maps from
Operation Olympic indicating that the "fictional" First, Second and Third Imperial Guards Brigades were,
in fact, not fictional by 1945. I am skeptical and not including them, but stock did, and very early in the
war as well. I think AE and probably the US Army in 1945 were confused by the reorganized IG divisions
which indeed had IG brigades originally. By the early 20th century the IG was a square division with two
brigades of two regiments. Early in WW2, before the game begins, this began to change, and we in effect have
three brigades - two in the Imperial Guards Division and one in the Imperial Guards Brigade. Early in the
war there is a reorganization, described earlier in this thread, and all the divisions now have no brigades
at all, but three regiments.

I am sticking with this for now. I am very surprised to see new scholarship late in 2018 on these matters.
Perhaps I should not be. The official history is very hard to read and was still being written after the
century turned. Maybe we should expect more to come out in English over time. I am following Neihorster who,
in spite of being German, renders the Japanese in very readable English tables of organization (but,
unfortunately, only for December 1941). I also am sticking with several historians who declare there was no
seventh regiment. But I like your analysis. It is possible that the early reorganized three IG divisions
(or at least one of them) should "grow" over time from a smaller foundation (2/3 of theory?). I will be
watching current scholarship more closely, and may ask some questions of authors, to clarify these matters.
Maybe we can improve still more how well we model the Imperial Guards?

Although I have no source stating there WAS ever a 7th IG regiment, and several that state categorically there never
was one (including the relatively up to date Wikipedia where visibility tends to get eratta corrected), I CAN
AGREE you may be right "sources disagree." I am unfamiliar with your source. Can you provide a citation so I
can try to get it?

< Message edited by el cid again -- 1/2/2019 1:11:09 PM >

(in reply to Hrafnagud)
Post #: 3
RE: IJA Imperial Guards - 1/14/2019 11:28:17 AM   
Kereguelen


Posts: 1826
Joined: 5/13/2004
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: el cid again


Although I have no source stating there WAS ever a 7th IG regiment, and several that state categorically there never
was one (including the relatively up to date Wikipedia where visibility tends to get eratta corrected), I CAN
AGREE you may be right "sources disagree." I am unfamiliar with your source. Can you provide a citation so I
can try to get it?


At least he Japanese wikipedia site about the 7th (Imperial) Guards regiment states that is what organized on 1st June 1943, Colonel Minami Sadako was appointed commander on 10th June 1943, that it received its regimental colours on 7th September 1943 and was still in existence at the end of the war.

As source the Japanese wiki site names a book about Imperial Japanese Infantry regiments from 1990.

(in reply to el cid again)
Post #: 4
RE: IJA Imperial Guards - 1/14/2019 11:51:11 AM   
Kereguelen


Posts: 1826
Joined: 5/13/2004
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: el cid again

IF you want more confusion, I have found maps in a new book (The Invasion of Japan) which has maps from
Operation Olympic indicating that the "fictional" First, Second and Third Imperial Guards Brigades were,
in fact, not fictional by 1945. I am skeptical and not including them, but stock did, and very early in the
war as well. I think AE and probably the US Army in 1945 were confused by the reorganized IG divisions
which indeed had IG brigades originally. By the early 20th century the IG was a square division with two
brigades of two regiments. Early in WW2, before the game begins, this began to change, and we in effect have
three brigades - two in the Imperial Guards Division and one in the Imperial Guards Brigade. Early in the
war there is a reorganization, described earlier in this thread, and all the divisions now have no brigades
at all, but three regiments.



Don't know to what you are referring here. Stock did not include any fictional IG Brigades. You are probably confusing the Guards Brigade (with 1st & 2nd IG Regiments and the Guards Cavalry), which is in stock and can be expanded to 1st Guards Division in 1943, with the (1945) Guard Brigades, that were raised for the defense of the Tokyo Bay Area but not part of the Imperial Guards, but second-line 'guard' units.

(in reply to el cid again)
Post #: 5
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