One could argue that these Japanese 

atrocities carried out were typical of the chaos 

and brutality that often accompany warfare; but this cannot be said for Unit 731.

-Derek Pua

Image: Pinterest

Started as an agency to promote public health, Unit 731 was meant to conduct research that would benefit Japanese soldiers, such as learning more about the ways in which the human body can withstand hunger and thirst and fight diseases. Early experiments were conducted on volunteers who had signed consent waivers, giving personnel permission. However, as the war intensified, they changed their methods.

They experimented by infecting test subjects with different types of diseases to see how their bodies would respond to pathogens. Scientists in Unit 731 also experimented on their test subjects through pregnancy and rape. Male prisoners infected with syphilis would be told to rape female prisoners as well as male prisoners in order to see how syphilis spreads in the body. Women were involuntarily impregnated and experimented on. Sometimes the mother would be vivisected in order to see how the fetus was developing.

Once it was clear that the Japanese were going to lose the war, the evidence of the experiments was destroyed. Upon the formal surrender of the Japanese in August 1945, Unit 731 was terminated, but the US made a lesser known deal using the information and granting freedom to political prisoners.