Inoue, Shigeyoshi, born 09-12-1889, the same year as Adolf Hitler, was a native of Sendai in Miyagi prefecture, in the Tōhoku region of Japan. He attended the 37th class of the Imperial Japanese Naval Academy, graduating second out of a class of 179 cadets in 1909. As a midshipman, he was assigned to the cruiser Soya on its 1909 cruise from Dairen to Chemulpo, Chinkai, Sasebo and Tsu. He stayed with Soya on its cruise the following year to Manila, Ambon, Townsville, Brisbane, Sydney, Hobart, Melbourne, Fremantle, Batavia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Makung, and Keelung. On his return, he was assigned to the battleship Mikasa, and then the cruiser Kasuga. On 15-11-1933, Inoue was given command of Hiei. However, his administrative talents could not be overlooked, and he returned to shore duties after slightly over a year and a half. Inoue was a protégé of Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, and was strongly opposed to the Tripartite Pact with Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany. Inoue was a leader of the “leftist clique” within the Japanese military, which opposed Japan’s increasing trend towards fascism and overseas expansionism. Promoted to rear admiral on 15-11-1935, Inoue was made vice commander of the IJN 3rd Fleet, which covered the China theater of operations in 1939 and further promoted to Vice Admiral the same year. As with Yamamoto, he was a strong proponent of naval aviation. Inoue was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun, first class in 1940. In 1940, Inoue became commander of the Imperial Japanese Navy Bureau, and submitted his thesis for a radical restructuring of the Imperial Japanese Navy to Naval Minister Koshiro Oikawa, he died age 75 on 09-05-1958, early in 1941. He was highly critical of the Navy’s shipbuilding programme, with its emphasis on battleships over aircraft carriers. Inoue was given command of the IJN Fourth Fleet later the same year, based out of Truk. He was thus in command of Japanese naval forces during the Battle of Guam against General Roy Geiger
forces and Battle of Wake Island, defender was
James Devereux. He subsequently relocated his headquarters to Rabaul for Operation Mo, intended to occupy Port Morseby. However, after the Japanese defeat at the Battle of the Coral Sea in May 1942, he was relieved of his command in October, and returned to Japan to become commander of the Imperial Japnese Naval Academy. He became Vice Minister of the Navy in the closing stages of World War II, was promoted to full Admiral on 15-05-1945, and officially retired on 15 October of the same year.
Death and burial ground of Inoue, Shigeyoshi.
After the war, Inoue became an English and music teacher to children at his house in Yokosuka. The site of his home is now a public park. Inoue died at the old age of 86 on 15-12-1975 and is buried on the Tam Reien Cemetery in Fuchu, Tokyo. Also buried there are close General, Korechika Anami, the Russian spy Richard Sorge, General Kazushige Ugaki, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, Admiral NishizoTsukahara, and General Tomeyuki Yamashito.