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As the Allied forces took the beaches of Normandy in June of 1944, hundreds of Axis soldiers were captured, but a young Asian man stood out.
The soldier was infamously photographed and identified merely as ‘Young Japanese man,’ but it is believed that he was Yang Kyoungjong, a Korean soldier who had crossed half the globe to fight in several theaters of World War 2.
Initially recruited in the Imperial Japanese Army from an occupied colony in Korea, Yang was later captured and forced to serve with the Red Army.
More impressively, he would also end up fighting alongside the Nazis with the Werchmacht, the only soldier in recent history presumed to have fought on three sides of a war.
Still, many historians claim that his story was a mere construction to emphasize a myth, but author Anthony Beevor disagrees: “Yang remains perhaps the most striking illustration of the helplessness of most ordinary mortals in the face of what appeared to be overwhelming historical forces.”
- As images and footage of actual events are not always available, Dark Docs sometimes utilizes similar historical images and footage for dramatic effect. I do my best to keep it as visually accurate as possible. All content on Dark Docs is researched, produced, and presented in historical context for educational purposes. We are history enthusiasts and are not always experts in some areas, so please don't hesitate to reach out to us with corrections, additional information, or new ideas. -