Battle of Liaoyang


Battle of Liaoyang

Infobox Military Conflict
conflict=Battle of Liaoyang
partof=the Russo-Japanese War


caption=Russian Reconnaissance Balloon in the Battle of Liaoyang.
date=August 24 – September 4, 1904
place=Near Mukden–Port Arthur Railway
result=Indesisive; Russian retreat
combatant1=flag|Empire of Japan
combatant2=flag|Russian Empire
commander1=Ōyama Iwao
commander2=Alexei Kuropatkin
strength1=115 battalions, 33 squadrons, 484 gunsThe Official history of the Russo-Japanese War / prepared by the Historical Section of the Committee of Imperial Defence Part IV p 12] [Русско-японская война 1904—1905 гг., т. 3, ч. 2. с. 257. ] 127,360 men
strength2=208,5 battalions, 153 squadrons, 673 gunsThe Official history of the Russo-Japanese War / prepared by the Historical Section of the Committee of Imperial Defence Part IV p 12] [Русско-японская война 1904—1905 гг., т. 3, ч. 2. с. 270. ] , 245,300 men [Свод материалов к отчету по интендантской части за время войны с Японией" стр. 398-399. табл. #30]
casualties1=22,922 killed, wounded or missing [The Official history of the Russo-Japanese War / prepared by the Historical Section of the Committee of Imperial Defence Part IV App D]
Official report:
5,537 killed
18,603 wounded
casualties2=19,112 killed, wounded or missingThe Official history of the Russo-Japanese War / prepared by the Historical Section of the Committee of Imperial Defence Part IV p 115]
Official report:
3,611 killed
14,301 wounded

The Battle of Liaoyang (Japanese: 遼陽会戦 "Ryōyō kaisen") (August 24 - September 4, 1904) was one of the major land battles of the Russo-Japanese War.

While the Japanese Army settled down in front of Port Arthur for a siege, a large force under Field Marshal Oyama moved north to secure the strategically-located rail junction of Liaoyang, on the Mukden–Port Arthur spur of the China Far East Railway, in Manchuria.

The battle began on 25 August 1904, with the 158,000 strong Russian armies, attempting to turn the flanks of the Japanese First, Second and Third Armies totaling 125,000 men.

On 26 August 1904, Japanese First Army took Kosarei Peak and Hung-sha Pass southeast of Liaoyang city after a hard-fought action. General Alexei Kuropatkin, commander-in-chief of the Russian armies, believed that he had been beaten and withdrew from the outer Russian defense line, with the Japanese in pursuit.

From 29-30 August 1904, the Russian troops managed to repel intense Japanese assaults on the main defense lines south of Liaoyang. By 31 August 1904, the Japanese First Army was crossing the river northeast of Liaoyang,

On 4 September 1904, after a few days of ineffectual counterattacks, Kuropatkin decided to evacuate Liaoyang for Mukden in the early morning. The unfortunate city was then sacked in succession by Russian, Chinese, and Japanese forces.

The Russian armies suffered about 17,900 casualties, the majority of which were captured or missing. However, despite the greater Japanese casualties (23,615 killed, wounded or captured), the Japanese were able to claim victory since the Russians quit the battlefield.

The dearly-won Japanese victory at Liaoyang and the fall of Port Arthur shortly thereafter contributed to the major Russian defeat the next year at the Battle of Mukden, which in turn helped start the Revolution of 1905.

References

* Kowner, Rotem (2006). "Historical Dictionary of the Russo-Japanese War". Scarecrow. ISBN 0-8108-4927-5


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