The number of casualties suffered by the enemy during the campaign has not been ascertained, and there is no possibility that anything like an accurate figure will ever be reached. The utter demoralization of the enemy forces during the last 60 days of the operation extended to all his activities. With the disorganization of his units the systematic keeping of records ceased. The thoroughness of the destruction caused by the American artillery in the bivouac areas and the command post locations west of Kokumbona during the same period caused the loss even of many of the records that had been kept.
Appendix A: Casualties of American and Enemy Forces
There can be no questioning the fact that the casualties inflicted upon the enemy in every major engagement exceeded by a tremendous margin those suffered by the American forces. The reasons for this favorable balance have been set forth in the account of each engagement and need no recapitulation. It will bear repeating, however, that enemy sources--prisoner of war interrogations and translations of documents picked up in the field--confirmed and in some cases increased the estimates made by the American commanders after each engagement.
The ending of the campaign, when two Army forces met near the Umasami River after having completed a pincers movement, verified what had been suspected during the final few days of the operation--that the frequent visits of a destroyer force to the neighborhood of Kamimbo Bay had been for the purpose of evacuation rather than for reinforcement. The two Army units had met only scattered opposition.
The number of enemy troops evacuated varies from a highly improbable 13,000 offered as an estimate by a prisoner of war under interrogation by the United States Bombing Survey to a more easily credible 7,000, also submitted as an estimate, given in the Japanese Campaign in the Guadalcanal Area.
The latter source is the authority for the following tabulation, taken from pages 34 and 35:
ESTIMATE OF JAPANESE LAND FORCES INVOLVED IN THE GUADALCANAL AREA Units involved Number of men Forces present 7 August 2,900 Yokosuka 5th Special Naval Landing Force 150 Ichiki Unit 1,750 35th Brigade Headquarters and 124th Infantry 3,090 2d Battalion, 4th Infantry 550 Sasebo 5th Special Naval Landing Force 500 Additional arrivals prior to October Battle 19,990 October 25--November 13 arrivals 3,050 November 14 arrivals 3,000 Replacements, October--December 2,000 Replacements, January 700 Total 37,680 Evacuations (including 2,100 normally transferred troops) 9,100 Estimated losses in Japanese land forces on Guadalcanal 28,580
As has been said in the narrative section of this monograph, there was a highly favorable ratio between enemy and American casualty rates. Figures compiled by the Casualty Division Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps are as follows:
FIRST MARINE DIVISION Nature of casualty Officers Enlisted Total Killed in Action 30 644 674 Died of Wounds 4 60 64 Missing, Presumed Dead 3 33 36 Wounded in Action 110 1852 1962 Total 147 2589 2736 SECOND MARINE DIVISION Killed in Action 10 212 222 Died of Wounds 3 28 31 Missing, Presumed Dead 1 14 15 Wounded in Action 58 874 932 Total 72 1128 1200 THIRD DEFENSE BATTALION Killed in Action 1 6 7 Wounded in Action 7 54 61 Total 8 60 68 FIFTH DEFENSE BATTALION Killed in Action 0 1 1 Total 0 1 1 NINTH DEFENSE BATTALION Wounded in Action 0 2 2 Total 0 2 2 FIRST MARINE AIR WING Killed in Action 21 9 30 Died of Wounds 1 3 4 Missing, Presumed Dead 32 33 65 Wounded in Action 37 49 86 Total 91 94 185 SECOND MARINE AIR WING Killed in Action 5 15 20 Died of Wounds 3 1 4 Missing, Presumed Dead 18 11 29 Wounded in Action 15 12 27 Total 41 39 80 GRAND TOTAL Killed in Action 67 887 954 Died of Wounds 11 92 103 Missing, Presumed Dead 54 91 145 Wounded in Action 227 2843 3070 Total casualties 359 3913 4272
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