KAGOSHIMA – The memoirs of Jinzo Nomoto, an 84-year-old former intelligence officer sent by a unit of the Imperial Japanese Army to Tibet in 1939, are to be published in late August, according to Yuyusha Publishing Co. “Tibet Senko 1939” (“Tibet Underground 1939”) chronicles the state of affairs in Tibet and the author’s own experiences on an 18-month intelligence-gathering mission there.
In the book, Nomoto talks about his memories of a procession honoring the birth at the time of the 14th and current Dalai Lama.
Journalist Yoshinobu Emoto, an expert on the cultural histories of Japan and Tibet, has described Nomoto’s collection of notes as invaluable for readers who want to know about a time in Tibetan history on which little has been written.
In 1935, Nomoto, a native of Kagoshima Prefecture, traveled to Manchuria and was posted at a division of the Japanese Kwantung Army as a Mongolian language research student.
In May 1939, he secretly entered Tibet by disguising himself as a Mongolian and accompanying a Tibetan monk. He collected information about the condition of the people that was submitted mainly to the army. Nomoto fled the area in October 1940. The Kwantung Army was a unit of the Imperial Army established in 1906 and dispatched to occupy areas in southern Manchuria after the 1904-1905 Russo-Japanese War.
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