Battle of Zaoyang–Yichang

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Battle of Zaoyang–Yichang
Part of Second Sino-Japanese War
Japanese troops crossing the Han River during the Hsiang-hsi Operation.jpg
Japanese troops in the battle of Zaoyang-Yichang.
Date 1 May – 18 June 1940
Location Vicinities of Zaoyang and Yichang, Hubei
Result Chinese victory[1][2][3][4]

 Republic of China

 Empire of Japan

Commanders and leaders
Taiwan Li Zongren
Taiwan Zhang Zizhong 
Japan Waichiro Sonobe
350,000 men[5] 1 Army (Corps)[6]
Casualties and losses
Over 60,000 killed and wounded
81 artillery pieces, 727 automatic weapons, 12,557 rifles captured[7]
2,700 killed
7,800 wounded[8]

The Battle of Zaoyang–Yichang (simplified Chinese: 枣宜会战; traditional Chinese: 棗宜會戰; pinyin: Zǎoyí Huìzhàn), also known as the Battle of Zaoyi, was one of the 22 major engagements between the National Revolutionary Army and Imperial Japanese Army during the Second Sino-Japanese War.


The Japanese were seeking a quicker solution to achieve a Chinese surrender. The Japanese contemplated moving directly down the Yangtze to the relocated Chinese capital, Chongqing. To do so, they would need to capture a critical town in western Hubei province, Yichang.

The Japanese attack did not commit many troops or materiel, which enabled the main Chinese commander, Li Zongren, who had frustrated the Japanese before, to repel the Japanese.


On first May, the Japanese forces began a drive towards Zaoyang. They pushed towards the 5th warzone's strongholds in the Tongbaishan and Dahongshan mountains, attempting to draw the Chinese forces into a battle and destroy them with a pincer movement. The Chinese strategy aimed to let the Japanese forces run low on supplies, and then destroy them.


The Japanese casualties were 2,700 troops killed and 7,800 wounded. The occupation of Ichang gave the Japanese an advantageous base for air attacks against Chongqing. Furthermore, it dealt a considerable blow to the morale and fighting capacity of the Chinese as no large-scale offensive was mounted after this operation.[9]


  1. ^ China. Hsüan ch'uan pu (1943). China After Five Years of War. Gollancz. p. 62. 
  2. ^ Bulletin of International News. Association for International Understanding. 1941. p. 1770. 
  3. ^ Philippine Magazine. Philippine Education Company. 1940. p. 62. 
  4. ^ Felix Reburreccion Hidalgo; Charles E. Griffith, jr. (1928). Philippine Magazine. Philippine Education Company. p. 62. 
  5. ^ JM-179 pp. 218
  6. ^ JM-179 pp. 218
  7. ^ JM-179 pp. 218
  8. ^ JM-179 pp. 218
  9. ^


  • Hsu Long-hsuen and Chang Ming-kai, History of The Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945) 2nd Ed., 1971. Translated by Wen Ha-hsiung, Chung Wu Publishing; 33, 140th Lane, Tung-hwa Street, Taipei, Taiwan Republic of China. Page 334-339, Map 20, 21
  • van de Ven, Hans. War and Nationalism in China: 1925-1945,

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 32°07′31″N 112°45′04″E / 32.1252°N 112.7510°E / 32.1252; 112.7510