Human cannibalism, or the practice of humans eating another human’s flesh or internal organs, was first recorded in the 17th century in New Guinea and parts of the Solomon Islands and some other places. During World War II, the gruesome act happened on the island of Chichijima in Japan on what was known as the Chichijima incident.

Warning: Graphic content.

The Capture of the Flyboys

In 1944, the US Navy bombarded the Bonin Islands repeatedly in support of the campaigns to take the Marianas, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, and then Tokyo from mid-1944 to early 1945. More than one hundred American airmen were shot down throughout the period, and many of the American soldiers were held captive by the Japanese.

American troops hold up bullet-holed Japanese flag. History Collection/Pinterest

Nine airmen escaped from their planes after they were shot down during the raids on Chichijima, a tiny island 700 miles south of Tokyo. The anti-aircraft defense system of Chichijima was excellent in taking out the Americans’ planes. They were imprisoned and would, later on, all be executed, except for one who was the then-20-year-old George H. W. Bush, the future President of the United States who would escape capture and be rescued by the USS Finback.