|Born||9 Dec 1911|
|Died||4 Sep 2007|
Contributor: C. Peter Chen
Ryuzo Sejima was born in western Toyama Prefecture in the area now known as the city of Oyabe. His father was a farmer. He graduated from the Japanese Army Military Academy on 11 Jul 1932 and received a silver watch from Emperor Showa. He was promoted to the rank of second lieutenant on 25 Oct 1932. In Jul 1934, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant. In Jan 1935, he enrolled in the Infantry School for communications courses, and in Dec of the same year joined a communications unit in the 9th Division. On 14 Dec 1936, he entered the Army War College.
As WW2 began, Sejima fought in China between 1937 and 1938 during the Second Sino-Japanese War, serving with the Toyama 35th Infantry Regiment. He graduated from the Army War College on 8 Dec 1938, receiving a sword from Emperor Showa; during his studies, he was promoted to the rank of captain in Nov 1937. On 15 Jan 1939, he became the chief of staff of the 4th Infantry Division stationed in Manchuria, China. On 15 May 1939, he became the chief of staff of the 5th Army. On 22 Nov, he became Kwantung Army's liaison officer with the Army General Staff in Tokyo, Japan. On 27 Dec, he was transferred to the operations division of the Imperial General Headquarters. In Oct 1941, he was promoted to the rank of major. In this capacity, he played a role in the planning of operations across different regions including actions in Philippine Islands (1941-1942), Guadalcanal, New Guinea, Imphal (India), Taiwan, Mariana Islands, and Okinawa. Concurrently, he also served as a liaison officer to the Navy starting on 1 Aug 1944 and liaison officer to the Combined Fleet starting in Feb 1945. On 1 Mar 1945, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant colonel. On 1 Jul 1945, he returned to Manchuria as the chief of staff of the Kwantung Army. In this role he attended the ceasefire negotiations with the Russians at the end of the war. He was detained by the Russians on 5 Sep, along with other Kwantung Army officers.
On 17 Sep 1946, Sejima appeared at the Far East International Military Tribunal as a witness. For 11 years, he was detained by the Russians in Siberia in violation of article 9 of the Potsdam Declaration issued in 1945. He returned to Japan in 1957.
In 1958, Sejima joined the Japanese firm Itochu. In 1961, he became a managers in the operations area. In 1962, he was promoted to the director of the operations division. In 1968, he became the managing director, followed by a promotion to the position of vice president in 1972. In 1978, he became the president of Itochu. During Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone's government, he was active in politics. In 1984, he was awarded the Orders of the Sacred Treasure. He also served as the President of Asia University of Tokyo, Japan, as well as being active in veteran groups. In 2000, he resigned as a Special Advisor to Itochu. He passed away at 0055 hours on 4 Sep 2007 in his home at the age of 95.
Ryuzo Sejima Timeline
|9 Dec 1911||Ryuzo Sejima was born.|
|4 Sep 2007||Ryuzo Sejima passed away.|
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General Douglas MacArthur at Leyte, 17 Oct 1944