1st Tank Division (Imperial Japanese Army)

1st Tank Division (Imperial Japanese Army)

Infobox Military Unit
unit_name= 1st Tank Division

caption=Tank from IJA 9th Armored Regiment captured on Guam
dates= 1942 - 1945
country=Empire of Japan
branch=Imperial Japanese Army
type=Armored division
garrison=Tokyo, Japan
nickname=拓 = "Taku"
battles=Second Sino-Japanese War World War II
command structure
name= Japanese 1st tank Division
parent=Thirty-Sixth Army (Japan)

* IJA 1st Armored Brigade
** IJA 1st Armored Regiment
** IJA 3rd Armored Regiment
*IJA 2nd Armored Brigade
** IJA 5th Armored Regiment
** IJA 9th Armored Regiment
* IJA 1st Mechanized Infantry Regiment
* IJA 1st Mobile Artillery Regiment

The nihongo|1st Tank Division|戦車第1師団|Sensha Dai-ichi Shidan, was one of four armored divisions of the Imperial Japanese Army in World War II


The 1st Tank Brigade was created out of four separate armored regiments based in Manchukuo on June 24 1942. With the addition of one infantry regiment, it was soon raised to the status of a full armored division. Stationed in Ning'an in northern Manchukuo, it was tasked primarily with border patrol of Manchukuo's eastern frontier with the Soviet Union under the overall command of the Japanese First Area Army.

As the situation in the Pacific War against the Allies deteriorated for Japan, in April 1944, the IJA 9th Armored Regiment of the 1st Tank Division was reassigned to the IJA 31st Army, and sent to Saipan, where it was annihilated at the subsequent Battle of Saipan and Battle of Guam. The remaining three regiments participated in Operation Ichi-Go in mainland China.

In March 1945, the 1st Tank Division was reassigned to the Japanese home islands in preparation for the expected invasion by Allied forces. It gained the IJA 1st Armored Regiment from the 3rd Tank Division, and formed part of the IJA 36th Army under the Japanese Twelfth Area Army. The headquarters unit and IJA 1st Armored Regiment were based in Sano, Tochigi, with the IJA 5th Armored Regiment stationed at Ōtawara, Tochigi (and later relocated to Kazo, Saitama, and the IJA 1st Mechanized Infantry Regiment and the Division’s mechanized artillery stationed at Tochigi. Anticipating that Allied forces would land at Kujūkuri Beach, the 1st Tank Division was to hold a defensive line stretching from Mount Tsukuba to the Tama River, with forward units deployed to Choshi, Chiba. The surrender of Japan came before the landing, and the 1st Armored Division did not see any combat on Japanese soil.

The 1st Tank Division was demobilized in September 1945 with the rest of the Imperial Japanese Army,

Commanding officer

ee also

* List of Japanese armored divisions



*cite book
last = Drea
first = Edward J.
authorlink =
coauthors =
year = 1998
chapter = Japanese Preparations for the Defense of the Homeland & Intelligence Forecasting for the Invasion of Japan
title = In the Service of the Emperor: Essays on the Imperial Japanese Army
publisher = University of Nebraska Press
location =
id = ISBN 0-8032-1708-0

*cite book
last = Frank
first = Richard B
coauthors =
year = 1999
title = Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire
publisher = Random House
location = New York
id = ISBN 0-679-41424-X

*cite book
last = Jowett
first = Bernard
coauthors =
year = 1999
title = The Japanese Army 1931-45 (Volume 2, 1942-45)
publisher = Osprey Publishing
location =
id = ISBN 1841763543

*cite book
last = Madej
first = Victor
coauthors =
year = 1981
title = Japanese Armed Forces Order of Battle, 1937-1945
publisher = Game Publishing Company
location =
id = ASIN: B000L4CYWW

*cite book
last = Skates
first = John Ray
coauthors =
year = 1994
title = The Invasion of Japan: Alternative to the Bomb Downfall
publisher = University of South Carolina Press
location = New York
id = ISBN 0-87249-972-3

External links

*cite web
last = Wendel
first = Marcus
url = http://www.axishistory.com/index.php?id=893
title = Axis History Factbook
work = 1st Tank Division

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