A Japanese treatise, "Hints for the Soldier" has
been circulated in some areas of the South Pacific during
recent months. This treatise places renewed emphasis
on such matters as individual firing of small-caliber
weapons, hand-to-hand combat, and physical endurance. It
recognizes that the hostile forces have a "superior
number of weapons," and recommends measures to
overcome this handicap.
Unfounded self-confidence arising from the tradition that "we've
always won" is of no great value. Confidence in victory
should be based on superior physical endurance and
thorough training. It is essential that a soldier be proficient
in the use of firearms, in the use of cold steel, and in marching.
With regard to shooting, large quantities of ammunition are
seldom available at the front; therefore expert marksmanship
must be developed during the training period. The principle
"Get a man with every round" is very sound. This is
particularly important with regard to heavy weapons. You
must avoid random firing; aim your shots well.
Train yourself to fire rifles and light machine guns from the
hip, and to fire the grenade discharger in a horizontal
position. [Under such circumstance the Japanese probably press the discharger
against a tree, log, stump, or rock]. In this manner,
you should be able to fire these weapons without conscious
effort in case hostile forces make an unexpected attack. If we
immediately take the initiative, the hostile forces will throw
away their arms and flee; conversely, it is essential not to let
the opposition take the initiative.
When fired upon unexpectedly by hostile artillery, deploy
and lie prone without moving.
Go about your duties silently. Hostile forces will fire blindly
in the direction from which they hear the sound of voices.
Never neglect to dig in whenever you make a halt; always
remember that digging in is essential^ whether you are going
to attack or to be attacked.
Deploying and crawling will reduce casualties, and are the
first steps toward victory. It should be known that if you
deploy and conceal yourself there will be no casualties from
hostile bombing, or from rifle or artillery fire.
A soldier should never forget his camouflage.
No soldier should lose his direction; When assigned as a
runner or on a patrol, mark your direction by breaking
branches of trees or by making notches on the hark of trees
as you go out.
You should engage in bayonet practice every day, with real
weapons. Practice until the mind, the body, and the weapon
are all coordinated in a perfect forward thrust. Drive the
bayonet home to the hilt, and immediately tackle a second and
third "enemy". Such practice is excellent for the morale.
Hand-to-hand combat is the deciding factor in an engagement, and
is most feared by the American and Australian forces.
Do not allow yourself to be captured, even if the alternative
is death. Bear in mind that capture disgraces not only
the Army but also your parents and family, who will never be
able to hold up their heads again. Always save the last round
Endure all hardships. Shortage of rations is a normal
condition. The saying "Poverty dulls the wit" should
not hold true for military men.