Every pond, stream and river was polluted with decomposing bodies. Shimada Toshio, a private second class, recounted his ‘baptism of blood’ on reaching the 226th Regiment in China later. A Chinese prisoner had been tied by his hands and ankles to a pole on each side of him. Nearly 50 new recruits were lined up to bayonet him. Toshio wrote: ‘My emotion must have been paralysed. I felt no mercy on him. He eventually started asking us, “Come on. Hurry up!” We couldn’t stick the right spot. So he said, “Hurry up!” which meant that he wanted to die quickly.’ Shimada claimed that it was difficult because the bayonet stuck in him ‘like [in] tofu’.