GI RADIOMAN PULLS A JAP’S LEG ON, OR MAYBE THE COLONEL IS PULLING OURS

Written by a Coast Guard Lookout for YANK Magazine

SOMEWHERE IN ALASKA—An Army colonel here credits a Yank radio operator with pulling the leg of the Japanese on Kiska, several months before the evacuation of that Aleutian base.

This radio operator, the colonel says, knew the Japanese language, and he practiced for months to imitate sending peculiarities of a Domei (Tokyo news agency) operator who relayed daily news to the Nip garrison on Kiska.

One evening, as the Domei sender was almost through tapping out the good news from Tokyo, the American radio operator jammed the program so that Kiska did not hear Tokyo sign off. Then, imitating the Tokyo style of sending, the American continued:

“Domei News deeply regrets that Admiral Yamamoto is discredited in imperial circles because he has lost so many valuable ships. The defeat of our naval forces at Coral Sea, Midway and in the Solomons has saddened the imperial household.”

The Kiska operator, in precise Morse, acknowledged: “Thank you, Domei, for the excellent news. This is Radio Kiska signing off. Good night.”

At least, that’s the colonel’s story, and he’s sticking to it.



kiska battle colonel alaska

Yanks leave landing craft at Lilly Cove during the invasion of Kiska.

For More On the Battle for Kiska Check Out:

The Pacific is My Beat: A War Correspondent’s Experiences In The Pacific




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