The International Military Tribunal for the Far East (also referred to as the IMTFE, the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal, or the Tokyo Trial) was held to try the leaders of Japan for crimes against peace, war crimes, and crimes against humanity committed during World War II.

It was presided over by a panel of 11 judges, one each from victorious Allied powers (United States, Soviet Union, United Kingdom, France, the Netherlands, Republic of China, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, India, and the Philippines). The prosecution was led by Joesph B. Keenan, an American.

The tribunal convened on May 3, 1946, and was adjourned on November 12, 1948.

Hideki Tojo takes the stand.

Table of contents
1 Sentences
2 See also
3 Further Reading
4 External links


There were 28 defendants tried, mostly military and political leaders. Two defendants (Matsuoka Yosuke and Nagano Osami) died of natural causes during the trial. Okawa Shumei had a nervous breakdown during the trial and was removed.

Seven others were sentenced to death by hanging for war crimes and crimes against humanity. They were executed at Sugamo Prison in Ikebukuro on December 23, 1948:

  • General Doihara Kenji, spy (later Air Force commander)
  • Baron Hirota Koki, foreign minister
  • General Itagaki Seishiro, war minister
  • General Kimura Heitaro, commander, Burma Expeditionary Force
  • General Matsui Iwane, commander, Shanghai Expeditionary Force
  • General Muto Akira, commander, Philippines Expeditionary Force
  • General Tojo Hideki, commander, Kwantung Army (later prime minister)

Sixteen more were senteced to life imprisonment. Three (Koiso, Shiratori, and Umezu) died in prison, while the other thirteen were paroled in 1955:

  • General Araki Sadao, war minister
  • Colonel Hashimoto Kingoro, major instigator of the second Sino-Japanese War
  • Field Marshal Hata Shunroku, war minister
  • Baron Hiranuma Kiichiro, prime minister
  • Hoshino Naoki, Chief Cabinet Secretary
  • Kaya Okinori, opium dealer to the Chinese
  • Marquis Kido Koichi, Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal
  • General Koiso Kuniaki, governor of Korea, later prime minister
  • General Minami Jiro, commander, Kwantung Army
  • Admiral Oka Takasumi, naval minister
  • General Oshima Hiroshi, ambassador to Germany
  • General Sato Kenryo, chief of the Military Affairs Bureau
  • Admiral Shimada Shigetaro, naval minister
  • Shiratori Toshio, ambassador to Italy
  • General Suzuki Teiichi, president of the Cabinet Planning Board
  • General Umezu Yoshijiro, war minister

Two defendants received finite sentences. General Togo Shigenori died in prison in 1949, while foreign minister Shigemitsu Mamoru was paroled in 1950 and went on to serve in Prime Minister Hatoyama Ichiro's cabinet.

See also

Further Reading

  • Bass, Gary Jonathan. Stay the Hand of Vengeance: The Politics of War Crimes Trials. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2000.
  • Brackman, Arnold C. The Other Nuremberg: the Untold Story of the Tokyo War Crimes Trial. New York: William Morrow and Company, 1987.
  • Dower, John W. Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II. New York: New Press, 1999.
  • Horowitz, Solis. "The Tokyo Trial" International Conciliation 465 (Nov 1950), 473-584.
  • Minear, Richard H. Victor's Justice: the Tokyo War Crimes Trial. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1971.

External links