0100 April 9th 1945.
The Skies Above the Palau Trench.
Japanese interceptors had fought off the Strategic and Close Air Support attacks throughout the Marianas but at a cost. There remained more work to do before the tiring squadrons could get some rest.
A Canadian Naval bomber squadron had returned to try and bomb the Submarines in the Palau Trench. Eight interceptor squadrons made sure that it would not return for some time, but they failed to completely destroy it.
0100 April 9th 1945.
North China Army Headquarters. Lashio, Burma.
The main Japanese force in Burma was marching towards Prome and its date with the defenders of Rangoon. Higashukuni was moving his headquarters towards the vacant Shan States to reduce the enemy held territory.
There remained one force to deal with in the north. Field Marshal Wilson had dug into the jungles of Toungoo and waited for the inevitable assault. It began at 0100 hours on April 9th as six divisions, led by General Yamashita, tried to attack his defences. Air support would arrive in a couple of hours to assist the attack.
By 1300 hours things were not going Yamashita's way but the main Japanese ground force had arrived in Prome. These troops were tired from their march but joined in the attack to try and force Wilson to retreat. It would be in vain on this occasion as the British forces held despite the odds against them.
At 1400 hours on April 11th Higashikuni ordered another attack. The target on this occasion was the mountainous province of Nakhon Sawan. Field Marshal Hata led ten divisions against the defenders, again with air support bombarding the rear areas of the defences. At 0000 hours on the 12th four more divisions joined in the attack, after capturing Chiang Rai, to provide an envelopment. The defenders would hold and more Japanese troops needed a rest period before they could try again.
Two fairly major attacks had both failed and it was becoming obvious that the remaining Allied forces in Burma were in no hurry to leave.
0100 April 14th 1945.
BB Division 1 Flagship. IJN Yamashiro, Gulf of Martapan.
Another enemy Transport fleet tried to penetrate the blockade in force around Rangoon. There was no indication of whether it was carrying troops or was there to extract some defenders.
Yamamoto's ships opened fire and the point became moot. The Captain of IJN Yamashiro added another ship to the growing list of vessels sunk by his crew.
A second Canadian Naval bomber squadron was sighted over the Palau Trench. This one would not be so lucky and it was totally destroyed by the hastily scambled interceptors.
0300 April 14th 1945.
North China Army Headquarters. Shan States, Burma.
Higashikuni had arrived in the Shan States which would allow another avenue of attack for his tired troops. Japanese bombers had been relentlessly bombing the British forces in the ever reducing pocket and he gave orders to try and advance into two provinces that had held his troops up.
Hata led a second assault on Nakhon Sawan with fifteen divisions as Higashikuni himself led ten divisions against Wilson in Toungoo.
The fighting was bloody with no quarter given on either side but the results were different this time. Both Allied defensive forces would be forced to abandon their trenches and retreat.
Higashikuni would advance towards Toungoo with just his headquarters division. Hata would advance with the three divisions from Phitsanulok.
The battles in Burma had turned Japan's way but the situation in India was deteriorating fairly quickly. Allied forces had advanced into Nagpur and Hyderabad in central India and enemy forces continued to build up in the north of the Country.
A multi-National force attacked Ueda's defences in Lucknow at 1400 hours on April 16th. Four different Countries forces attacked from Jabalpur as well as Canadian and British troops from further north. Ueda was not ready to withdraw just yet and held this assault off after a sixteen hour battle mostly fought at night.
The next batch of new infantry divisions began to deploy on April 17th. They would initially move to Fukuoka before being transported to their defensive positions in northern China and Manchukuo.