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Battle of Changsha (1941)
Part of the Second Sino-Japanese War of the Pacific War
Type 92 Heavy Machine Gun2.jpg
A Japanese soldier firing a Type 92 Heavy Machine Gun across the Milou river in September 1941
Date6 September–8 October 1941
Result Chinese victory
Taiwan National Revolutionary Army Japan Imperial Japanese Army
Imperial Japanese Navy
Commanders and leaders
Taiwan Xue Yue Japan Korechika Anami
1,410,000 troops
(10 armies)
120,000+ Army, Navy
Casualties and losses
Unknown 10,000+ deaths
Thousands more injured

The Battle of Changsha (6 September–8 October 1941) was Japan's second attempt at taking the city of Changsha, China, the capital of Hunan Province, as part of the Second Sino-Japanese War.


The offensive was carried out by more than 120,000 Japanese troops, including supporting naval and air forces. The Chinese forces under the command of General Xue Yue—the 9th Army Group—conducted a response that included street fighting in Changsha city. Ten Chinese armies eventually reached Changsha, retaking the city. The Japanese suffered over 10,000 casualties (killed, wounded and missing) and retreated.

Course of battle

The battle started when a small Chinese guerrilla force clashed with the Japanese 6th Division in the mountains southeast of Yueyang on 6 September. On the 17th, the Japanese crossed the Sinchiang River (新墙河) at four points and made rapid advances, crossing the Milo River on 19 September. The main Chinese force avoided confronting the enemy but marched in a parallel fashion, out-flanking the Japanese trail southward. The Japanese also attempted to out-flank and encircle the Chinese. This caused both the Chinese and the Japanese armies to reach the Laotao River (捞刀河) regions for an inevitable battle.

On 27 September, several hundred Japanese troops in plain clothes reached the north gate of Changsha but were unable to sabotage the city defenses, leading to heavy fighting on the 28th. Unable to overcome the defenders, the Japanese began a general retreat back to the Yueyang region on 30 September.


  • [1] 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.

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