Who was the tougher World War II enemy?

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Who was the tougher World War II enemy, the Germans or the Japanese? Gen. J. Lawton “Lighning Joe” Collins fought in both theaters and offered these thoughts:

They were radically different. The German was far more skilled than the Japanese. Most of the Japanese that we fought were not skilled men. Not skilled leaders. The German had a professional army…. The Japanese army was very much like ours in a sense. They had a small corps of officers who were professionals. But the bulk of their people were not professionals in the sense of knowing their business and so on. They didn’t have the equipment that we had. They didn’t know how to handle combined arms — the artillery and the support of the infantry — to the same extent we did. They were gallant soldiers, though. They fought to the end and you had to knock them off — that was all there was to it. And we had to do that right on Guadalcanal…. The Japanese were very gallant men. They fought very, very hard, but they were not nearly as skillful as the Germans. But the German didn’t have the tenacity of the Japanese.”

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