NOVEMBER 25, 1941.
Memorandum for the Chief of Staff:
Subject: Far Eastern Situation.
1. The following are extracts from cables received in the Office of Naval Intelligence together with G-2 comment thereon:
a. From Shanghai November 21. Intense activity at Woosung since the 15th. Unusual number of ships present including former merchant craft 10,000 tons and up. Wednesday 10 transports sailed, eight of which carried troops. Same day 32 additional ships, similar type, anchored in lower Whangpoo. Landing boats included in outgoing equipment. On decks of three outgoing ships was observed a number of creosoted heavy timber trestles in sections each approximately 60 feet long and 8 feet wide. Several merchant vessels recently taken over observed installing machine gun mounts. One thousand troops departed from Swatow last Saturday.
G-2 Comment: Movement of troops from Central China believed directed toward Hainan and Indo-China. No evidences of heavy concentration on Taiwan (Formosa).
b. From Guam November 23. Increased naval activity Truk, Saipan area. Indicated increases base forces in Mandates. Additions to fleet;-Palao, one division Marus, Truk, two divisions Marus; and two seaplane tenders, also shore command (possible landing force). Saipan, two divisions Marus; Jaluit, three divisions Marus and three unidentified shore commands, also two seaplane tenders. Air force activity increasing. Eleventh Air Group believed in Palao. Airon 24 concentrated in Marshalls. Fifth Fleet apparently at Chichijima, portions possibly at Marcus. It is estimated that 70 itinerant ships arrived or departed from Mandates since November 1 with emphasis on Truk and Jaluit areas.
G-2 Comment: Marus are small cargo or passenger vessels requisitioned by the Navy for use as trains, supply vessels and tenders. A Division of Marus consists of some two to four vessels.
The Eleventh Air Group is something a little larger than an American Squadron. The Fifth Fleet consists of odds and ends of vessels not useable by the Combined Fleet. Airon 24 consists of one old carrier (Kamoi) and one converted carrier.
2. From information available in the Division the Japanese strength in the mandated islands is believed to be as follows:
15,000 ground troops. 8 destroyers.
100 aircraft of all types. 9 submarines.
4 light cruisers.
3. The Navy Department have supplied the following comment on November 24th regarding Japanese activity in the Western Pacific:
"Apparent establishment by Japan of combined air and surface patrol over shipping routes U. S. to Australia. Daily aircraft patrols observed extending
over Gilbert Islands from Jaluit. Surface craft believed covering area extending to Ellice Island. Fishing fleet reported cooperating with patrols. Fishing fleet divided in three sections: one in vicinity of Bathhurst Island, one near Arnham one near Thursday Islands. Fishing fleet expected to appear around Dutch New Guinea. These ships equipped with long range radio."
Brigadier General U. S. Army
Acting Assistant Chief of Staff, G-2.
Secretary of War
War Plans Division
G. H. Q.
(EXHIBITS OF THE JOINT COMMITTEE, PHA, PT. 14, EXHIBIT NO. 33 MILITARY INTELLIGENCE ESTIMATES PREPARED BY G-2, WAR DEPARTMENT)