Unit 731 was a Japanese facility in China during World War II where biological and chemical experiments were performed on human beings to create weapons. It almost manages to get worse from there.
Unit 731 was first founded in 1932 in occupied China by Shiro Ishi of the Imperial Army of Japan. It was originally called the "Army Epidemic Prevention Research Laboratory" in an apparently deliberate attempt to rub irony in everyone's face.
During it's operations, the facility would collect perople ranging from prisoners of war from China, the Soviet Union, Britain, America to "suspicious" babies. Or as they put it because these are some really scary fuckwads we're talking about, "maruta(logs.)" Then they killed them in nightmarish ways including conscious vivisections, plague (from bubonic to toleremea,) grenade testing, et fucking cetera. It's the sort of thing a Cracked topic page writer has no business describing. What do we know about this kind of tragedy or agony? Hell, to us, a tragedy is when an article pitch "14 Images You Will Believe Are Photoshoped" gets lukewarm feedback.
In 1945, the Soviet Union invaded the provinces in which the unit was located and the Japanese withdrew in haste. However, an attempt was made by the Japanese Army group to destory the buildings and remove records of the event. It failed because the buildings had been constructed so well for resistance during bombing attacks (you really don't want your containers of plague-ridden fleas to fall off the shelf when you're around.) It's like some cheap symbol of the evil people commit living after them no matter how they might wish to forget or ignore it. It's not quite satisfying considering how things turned out.
After the end of World War II, the administration of Unit 731 largely gets away with it almost flamboyantly. By act of Supreme Commander of Allied forces Douglas MacArthur, not only are those taken prisoner and under the jurisdiction of the Tokyo War Crimes Trial given immunity, they were given immunity under the condition THEY CONTINUE THAT WORK FOR AMERICA! Shiro Ishi is even given a post in Maryland and is in Korea during the Korean War where he continues work! Cause, ya know, if you have a prisoner that has a practically genocidal loyalty to his country that you have just torched and humiliated in the eyes of the world, what you really want to do is give him MORE pathogens and move him to where he could do the most damage. Christ, even Werner Van Braun, the Nasa Scientist/Nazi Rocketfucker wasn't given any nuclear launch codes!
Things fair a little better in the Societ Union. There, in 1949, twelve of the arrested military/medical personnel are sentenced to twenty-five years to life. It's not what they desrve. That would be to locked together in a small cell where within two minutes they would all shiv each other to death from force of habit. Oh sure, the Soviets set up a biological weapons research lab in Sverdslock based around the findings at Unit 731, but you take your justice where you can find it.
In Japan, in 2001 the film Japanese Devils was released, a bunch of interviews of former medical personnel from the Unit. This caused national protests because the event clashed with the version of events presented in history text books. To date, this is the only halfway decent movie about the event.
The first, probably best known movie about the event is Men Behind the Sun(1986). Although the dipshit director, Tun Fei Mou, contended that it was a serious attempt to educate people about the atrocities, its more like if Spielberg had tried to make Schindler's List and instead made ilsa, She-Wolf of the S.S. without the sex by mistake (or Empire of Men Behind the Sun.) It features real animal killing and an autopsy of a real Chinese kid.
Later an even dippier shit (or shitter dip) named Andrei Iskanov made a movie called Philosophy of a Knife(2008) about it. This time it's ostensibly a documentary about the event, using a combination of archival Soviet footage and reenactments. It makes the controversial claim that amongst the victims were Russian C-List porn actresses and that many of the laboratories in Unit 731 were computer generated with green screens being used. Additionally it claims something of this type should be four hours long and scored with the musical equivalent of a guy playing a casio player with his butt cheeks while suffering an epileptic attack. The best thing to come from this clusterfuck is the director's amusing myspace page where he acts like someone a third his age: www.myspace.com/philosophyofaknife . (Turn your sound way down first)