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    Banadero (Last Command Post) Saipan | CNMI USA
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Peter Ording 1999

Click For Enlargement
Peter Ording 1999
Banadero is located near the northern coast of Saipan Island in the Mariana Island Group (Mariana Islands). Also known as "Laderan Banadero". Popularly known by the misnomer "Last Japanese Command Post".

Today located in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) in the Mariana Island Group (Mariana Islands) in the United States of America (USA).

Wartime History
During early July 1944 at the end of the Battle of Saipan, hundreds of Japanese soldiers and civilians jumped off the cliffs in this area to commit suicide rather than surrender to American forces.

Laderan Banadero (Suicide Cliff)
This cliff has an elevation of 800' / 244m overlooking the ocean. Also known as "Suicide Cliff". To the north is Puntan Sabaneta (Banzai Cliff). During early July 1944 hundreds of Japanese soldiers jumped 250 meters to their deaths rather than surrender. Today, the Okinawa Peace Memorial is located below the base of the cliff.

Banadero Memorial Park
During the late 1970s, the Banadero Memorial Park was established as a peace memorial in part by the efforts of local resident Stephen Atkin. Displayed at this location is a Type 95 Ha Go and three Japanese guns.

Puntan Sabaneta (Banzai Cliff)
Puntan Sabaneta is a large bluff that overlooks the ocean. Also known as "Banzai Cliff". To the south is Laderan Banadero (Suicide Cliff). During early July 1944 Japanese civilians committed suicide. just north of Suicide Cliff. Encouraged by Japanese troops, and told that they would be killed and raped by the Americans, women and children plunged to their death in sight of American soldiers who pleaded with them in Japanese not to jump. After the war surplus equipment was dumped off Banzai Cliff rather than ship it home. Divers have termed the place 'Million Dollar Hole'. Today there is a memorial and park at this location.

During 1968, a crew from the Trust Territory Department of Public Words led by Stephen Aiken collected and detonated 2,100 tons of explosives mostly collected from the area around nearby Marpi Point and placed them at the base of "Banzai Cliff". The resulting explosion caused a wave that crashed several feet above the cliff where the crew had taken cover and nearly washed several of the crew out to sea.

Marianas Variety News & Views "Demolition expert Aiken dies" June 24, 1983
Pacific Daily News "Aiken had one of most explosive jobs" June 29, 1983

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Last Updated
October 21, 2022


April 18, 1944
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