Lieutenant Onoda fought in World War II in the Philippines. In 1944, the capture of territory allies twenty-two Onoda was ordered to lead a small squad, hidden in the jungle and guerrilla activity.
For all the war ended in 1945, and Onoda, loyal orders, continued to fight year after year. There was no one to stop him. Lieutenant emerged from the jungle and gave the Philippine authorities March 10, 1974, 29 years after the war, in full uniform, having the trouble-Japanese rifle, 500 rounds of ammunition for it, several hand grenades and a samurai sword. He surrendered only after the Japanese arrived and ordered his commander to surrender.
The result of guerrilla warfare during that time became 130 dead and wounded people. All these years Onoda organized hunting police, army and special forces, but could not catch him.
morning of March 10, 1974 to the management of the Philippine Islands Police Lubanga went taut elderly man in a half-decayed form of the Imperial Japanese Army. Bowed surprised policeman, he carefully placed on the ground an old rifle. "I - Second Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda. To obey the orders of my boss who told me to give up. " As many as 30 years, the Japanese, not knowing about the surrender of the country, continued to fight in the jungles of the Philippines.
- I talked to him shortly after his surrender. This person has not been able to recover, - told the "AIF" former "first lady" of the Philippines Imelda Marcos. - Onoda suffered a terrible shock. When he was told that the war ended in 1945, he simply went dark eyes. "As Japan could lose? Why I cared for his rifle, as for a small child? For what killed my people? "- He asked me, and I did not know what to answer him. He just sat and wept bitterly.
The history of many years of adventures Japanese officer in the Philippine jungle began on 17 December 1944, when the battalion commander, Major Taniguchi Onoda ordered to lead a guerrilla war against the Americans Lubanga: "We are retreating, but this is temporary. You go to the mountains and will make forays - to lay mines to blow warehouses. I forbid you to commit suicide and surrender. It may take three, four or five years, but I'll be back for you. This order can not cancel just me and no one else. "
Soon American soldiers landed on the Lubanga, and Onoda, dividing his partisans into small groups, retreated into the jungles of the island, along with two rows and Corporal Shimada.
- I remember Onoda showed us his refuge in the jungle - said the former deputy sheriff Lubanga Fidel Elamos. - It was clean, hung slogans with the characters "war until victory" and was fixed on the wall carved out of banana leaves portrait of the emperor. While they were alive his subordinates, Onoda spent training them, and organize competitions poems.
Onoda did not know what happened to the soldiers from other units. In October 1945, he found an American flyer with the inscription: "Japan surrendered on 14 August. Get down from the mountains and surrender! ". Lieutenant hesitated, but at that moment he heard shooting nearby and realized that the war is still going. A leaflet - just lie to lure them out of the woods. But they will be smarter enemy and go even further into the interior of the island ...
- My father fought against him, and then I became a police officer and also fought with the "detachment Onoda" it seemed to never end - says Fidel Elamos. - We combed the jungle and over again, and found no one, and at night the samurai again shot us in the back. We threw them newspapers that they saw that war is long over, threw off letters from relatives. Hiro then I asked: "Why did not you give up?" He said that he was sure - forged letters and newspapers.
Went from year to year, and Onoda fought in the jungle. In Japan, increased the ranks of skyscrapers, the Japanese electronics conquer the world, businessmen from Tokyo to buy the largest US corporations, and Hiro all fought for the glory of the Emperor Lubanga, believing that the war continues. Lieutenant boiled water from a stream in the fire, eating fruits and roots - all the time he once fell seriously ill with angina. Spending the night in the pouring rain to rain, he closed his rifle with his body.
Once a month, the Japanese ambushed a military jeep, shooting drivers. But in 1950, lost his nerve in one of the series - he went to the police with his hands up. Four years later, Corporal Shimada was killed in a shootout with police at one of the beaches. Lieutenant and the last soldier Kozuka dug ourselves in the jungle a new underground shelter, inconspicuous from the air, and moved there.
In October 1972, near a village lieutenant laid on the road the last remaining in his mine to undermine the Philippine patrol. But mine is rusted and did not explode, and then the two of them with ordinary Kozuka attacked the patrol - Kozuka shot, and Onoda was left completely alone.
The death of a Japanese soldier, who died 27 years after the surrender, caused a shock in Japan. Search companies rushed to Burma, Malaysia and the Philippines to look for the lost in the woods soldiers of the Imperial Army. And then the unbelievable happened. Almost 30 years Onoda could not find the best part of the special forces, but accidentally ran into him a Japanese tourist Suzuki, met in the jungle butterflies.
He told Hiro that Japan surrendered and the war ended long ago. Thinking Hiro said, "I do not believe. While Major does not cancel the order, I will fight. " Returning home, Suzuki threw all their forces to search Major Taniguchi. He succeeded with great difficulty - Major changed his name and became a bookseller. Taniguchi arrived in Lubango and traveled for three days through the jungle in a jeep with a loudspeaker, saying one sentence: "I order you to surrender!».
When Onoda emerged from the jungle, Taniguchi, dressed in military uniform, read out stand at "attention" the lieutenant ordered to surrender. After listening to the commander, Onoda raised his rifle on his shoulder and staggered toward the side of the police station, tearing off his uniform rotten stripe ...
Hiroo Onoda surrounded by police
- In the Philippines, there were demonstrations with the requirements put in jail Hiro - explains the widow of the then President of the Philippines Imelda Marcos. - After all, as a result of his "Thirty Years War" were killed and wounded 130 soldiers and police. But my husband decided to pardon 52-year-old Onoda and allow him to travel to Japan.
Onoda surrenders ...
He passes his sword to the President of the Philippines, the President returns the lieutenant
However, the very second lieutenant, with fear and wonder who considered overgrown skyscrapers Japan, this return is not pleased. At night he dreamed of the jungle, where he spent so much time. His frightened cars and trains, resulted in shock jets and televisions. A few years later Hiro bought a ranch in the thick forests of Brazil and went to live there.
In 1996, he returned to the Philippines. - Hiroo Onoda suddenly came to us from Brazil in 1996 - says the vice-governor Lubanga Jim Molina. - Do not want to stay at the hotel and asked for permission to settle in the dugout in the jungle. When he came to the village, no one filed his hands.
In August 2004, "AIF" has published an article entitled "The Last Samurai" about the fate of lieutenant, which caused unprecedented interest among readers and hundreds of emails with questions: how had managed to live so many years in extreme conditions? Respond to them could only himself Onoda. After three years of negotiations, he agreed to a brief meeting with the browser "AIF».
- Honestly, I do not see how you can 30 years hiding in the jungle ...
- The man in the big cities too broke away from nature. In fact, the forest has everything to survive. Mass herbs enhancing immunity, serving as an antibiotic, disinfecting wounds. Starve to death is also impossible, the main health - follow normal diet. For example, frequent use of the body temperature of the meat increases, and coconut milk drink from - on the contrary, reduced. For all the time in the jungle, I was sick only once. We should not forget about the simple things - in the morning and evening, I brushed my teeth pounded palm bark. When I then examined the dentist, then amazed: for 30 years I have not had a single case of caries.
- What's the first thing you need to learn how to do in the woods?
- Removing the fire. First, I set fire to the powder of glass cartridges, ammunition but it was necessary to take care of, so I tried to get the fire using the friction of two pieces of bamboo. If not immediately, but in the end it turned out. Fire is needed to boil the river and rainwater, it should be done necessarily, it has harmful microbes.
- When you give up, then gave a rifle with 500 rounds of police in excellent condition. How do you save as much ammunition?
- I saved. The cartridges were strictly shootout with the military, as well as the fact in order to get fresh meat. Occasionally we went to the outskirts of villages and catching stray from the herd of cows. The animals were killed with one shot to the head and only during heavy rain: so the villagers heard the shooting. Beef vyalili in the sun, it was divided so that the carcass of a cow could eat for 250 days. Rifle ammunition I regularly oiled beef fat, disassemble, clean. Generally, berёg her as a child - to wrap up in a cloth, when it was cold, covered his body, when there was a rain.
- What do you eat more besides beef jerky?
- Cooked porridge of green bananas in coconut milk. Fish in the creek, a couple of times on the shop raided the village, took the rice and canned goods. Set traps for rats. In principle, any tropical forest there is nothing dangerous to humans.
- What about poisonous snakes and insects?
- When you are in the jungle for years, you become part of them. And understand that the snake never just will not attack, she is afraid of you to death. It is the same with the spiders, they do not aim to hunt people. Enough not to step on them, then everything will be fine. Of course, from the beginning of the forest will be very terrible. But then you get used to everything. We feared not predators or snakes, and people - even soup cooked bananas exclusively at night to smoke is not seen in the village.
- Do you regret that spent the best years of his life to ensure that wage guerrilla war meaningless alone, although Japan has long given up?
- In the Imperial Army decided not to discuss orders. Major said, "You must remain until I come back for you. This order can only undo me. " I am a soldier and following orders - what's so surprising? I insulted the assumption that the struggle was pointless. I fought my country to become a powerful and prosperous. When I came back to Tokyo, I saw that Japan is strong and rich - even richer than before. And it comforted my heart. As for the rest ... How could I know that Japan surrendered? I'm in a nightmare could not imagine it. All this time we were fighting in the woods, were convinced that the war continues.
- You dropped from the plane of the newspaper to let you know about the surrender of Japan.
- Modern printing equipment can print everything you need special services. I decided that these fake newspaper that their enemies are manufactured specifically to deceive us and the lure of the jungle. The last two years of the sky throwing letters of my relatives from Japan, who tried to persuade me to give up - I recognized the handwriting, but I thought that the Americans took them captive and forced to write it.
- For thirty years, you fought in the jungle with an army - against you at different times involved soldiers, special forces troops, helicopters. Frankly speaking, the plot of a Hollywood action movie. You do not have the feeling that you Superman?
- No. With the guerrillas always hard to fight in many countries for decades can not suppress the armed resistance, especially in difficult terrain. If you feel in the woods like a fish in water - your opponent is simply doomed. For example, I know that one open area should move in camouflage of dry leaves, on the other - only the freshest. Filipino soldiers were not aware of such subtleties.
- What do you miss most from home comforts?
- Hard to say. Soap, probably. I wash clothes in tap water, using ash from the fire as a cleaning agent, and washed every day ... but I wanted namylitsya. The problem was that the form began to spread. I made the needle from the wreckage of barbed wire and thread darn clothes that are made of palm heart. In the rainy season lived in a cave, in the dry season was building a "flat" from bamboo poles and covered with a roof of palm "straws": in the same room was the kitchen, the other - a bedroom.
- How did you survive the return to Japan?
- With difficulty. As if I had one time immediately moved to another: skyscrapers, girl, neon signs, incomprehensible music. I realized that I had a nervous breakdown happens, everything was too accessible - drinking water flowing from the tap, the food sold in stores. I could not sleep on the bed all the time lay on the bare floor. On the advice of a therapist, I emigrated to Brazil, where he bred cows on the farm. Only then was able to return home. But now, three months of the year, I'm going to the mountain areas of Hokkaido: they founded a school for boys, where they teach the art of survival.
- How do you expect: Can someone from Japanese soldiers and is now hiding in the depths of the jungle, not knowing that ended World War II?
- Perhaps because my case was not the last. In April 1980, surrendered to Captain Fumio Nakahira, who 36 years hiding in the mountains of the Philippine island of Mindoro. It is possible that in the woods was someone else ...
- But if Major Taniguchi did not cancel his order, would you fight so far?
Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda retired