Japan fought an "unwinnable" war against the United States, a 93-year-old Japanese veteran said in recalling the fierce World War II battle that killed his army comrades in Palau.

Takashi Oike, who was a corporal at that time, was among 800 Japanese soldiers who had attempted to land on Palau's Peleliu Island in a bid to help about 10,000 Japanese troops defending the territory from U.S. forces in September 1944.

To capture the Japanese-controlled island, the U.S. forces hit it with heavy naval bombardments and airstrikes.