Unbroken - Zamperini at Ofuna

Ofuna - Aerial View American History Biographies Disasters World War II Tragedies and Triumphs

During the Second World War, Ofuna was a secret interrogation camp where Japanese officials questioned Allied prisoners of war. This aerial view shows how its existence—at least to most outsiders—remained unknown until the end of the war.

Bulletin No. 113 - 45, dated 15 June 1945—from CINCPAC (Commander-in-Chief Pacific) CINCPOA (Commander in Chief Pacific Ocean Areas)—notes the following about Ofuna:

Location by description:  Two blocks south of OFUNA station within angle formed by railroad lines.

Description of Camp:  180-foot square area surrounded by barbed wire 10 feet high.  One source reports POWs live in large Jap houses.

Louis Zamperini provides more details:

Ofuna was just outside of Yokohama, in the hills.  It was actually an unregistered camp - a highly secret place.  I was called a special prisoner and therefore unknown to the world.  (Zamperini, Oral History, Amateur Athletic Foundation of Los Angeles, page 66.)

Louie was a prisoner at Ofuna for about eleven months.

What did rescuers find when they arrived at Ofuna to evacuate prisoners of war? The Commander of Task Group 30.6 radioed this message to the Commander of the Third Fleet:

…Bestial beatings were common especially at Ofuna, inquisitorial den of brutism. The cheers of POW as our boat hove into sight brought tears to our eyes… (See Reports of General MacArthur – MacArthur in Japan: The Occupation: Military Phase, Volume I Supplement, Chapter 4 at page 100.)

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5156stories and lessons created

Original Release: Mar 14, 2017

Updated Last Revision: Mar 15, 2017

Media Credits

Aerial photograph of Ofuna, online courtesy U.S. National Archives.


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"Unbroken - Zamperini at Ofuna" AwesomeStories.com. Mar 14, 2017. Apr 21, 2019.
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