Aussie nurses raped before being massacred by Japanese

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
The obsessive need for Blair like obessabce and who can be the most verbosely and obsequiously ‘sorry’ shows a complete lack of grasp of the Japanese.

Outrage! The Japanese only called ‘x’ regrettable!

Well, saying something is ‘regrettable ‘ for a Japanese is a pretty deep apology.


And the Burma Railway?

You’d think by the column inches expended, it was the defining event of the war in the Far East, not a VERY minor footnote in a very much bigger war.
It’s been mythologised to an absurd level. All the Japanese are utterly evil, ( they weren’t, plenty tried best to be decent in atrocious conditions), all the POWs are paragons of virtue, (they weren’t, plenty were stealing from and exploiting the other POWs).

Yes, the war in the Pacific and Far East had more than its fair share of barbarity, but that’s what happens when both sides paint the other as subhumans and act accordingly.

We’re seeing a lot of victors whitewashing. Things like the massacre of a Japanese medical column and it’s patients during the rout of the Japanese in Burma in 1945 get lost in the faux outrage.

General Curtis leMay - a total war hardass - at least had the intellectual honesty to admit if he’d been on the losing side, a war crimes trial would have awaited him for his actions in the bombing of Japanese civilians.
That's just lazy moral equivalence.

By 1945 the Japanese had an indelible and well-deserved reputation for extreme savagery so it's hardly surprising that those fighting them occasionally threw away the rule book.

A Japanese soldier falling into allied hands was at less risk of maltreatment, or worse, than the other way round and Japanese civilians were far better treated by the Allies - there are no Nanking's or Manila's on the Allied war record. As for bombing urban areas to cause mass civilian casualties, the Japanese and the Germans pretty much pioneered the tactic, we were just better at it by the end of the war.

It's very hard to believe that a Japanese occupation of the United States would have been anywhere near as benign as the US occupation of Japan.
 
It’s interesting how a lot of WW2 veterans have absolute lifelong hatred for the Japanese but managed to quickly reconcile with the Germans.

My father in law landed with the ERY on D Day, fought through to Berlin, wounded at Caen, quick detour via Belsen to witness the horrors of the holocaust.

Never set foot in the Far East.

By the 50s he was skiing in Germany and Austria every winter, had German friends, drove BMWs for most of his life.

By comparison, absolutely hated anything Japanese. Seriously protested when my missus moved out there in the early 00s to work as an English teacher.

Similar story with my great uncle. Merville Battery veteran. Ended up becoming good friends with the German officer in charge of the battery after the war. Hated anything Japanese.

Were they really that much worse than the Nazis?
It makes you wonder doesnt it, how about live human testing of disgusting acts of savagery on prisoners of war, removal of teeth whilst alive, starvation, rape and gassed to death for being Jewish.

I would say the German atrocities were much worse than the Japs and that is unquestionable. As for the response of Allied soldiers in Europe of the Germans vs. the Japanese I suspect propaganda to keep America in the war played a part to make it freezing in the East and that Nazi death camp atrocities were probably unknown for a number of years in the West.

Without trying to drag this into the gutter, I also find that from my internet searches of Pornography, the Germans and the Japanese are the biggest deviants on the planet by far with probably Germany leading. I think its telling that deprivation and punishment of women is still high on the agenda of these nations especially with the thread title, if there were another war, would they not act out their fantasies on prisoners?
 
The obsessive need for Blair like obessabce and who can be the most verbosely and obsequiously ‘sorry’ shows a complete lack of grasp of the Japanese.

Outrage! The Japanese only called ‘x’ regrettable!

Well, saying something is ‘regrettable ‘ for a Japanese is a pretty deep apology.
I don't think that anyone is expecting any public breast-beating, particularly from a generation of Japanese who were in no way responsible. However if the sins of the past are not being acknowledged or even being taught in the schools as part of a wider curriculum, how can we expect the lessons of history to be learned?

They have attached much greater importance to their own cultural desire to 'save face' than to the millions who suffered under them (British Commonwealth and US POWs are just a tiny proportion compared to the vast number of Chinese victims of Japanese cruelty over a longer period).
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
It’s interesting how a lot of WW2 veterans have absolute lifelong hatred for the Japanese but managed to quickly reconcile with the Germans.

My father in law landed with the ERY on D Day, fought through to Berlin, wounded at Caen, quick detour via Belsen to witness the horrors of the holocaust.

Never set foot in the Far East.

By the 50s he was skiing in Germany and Austria every winter, had German friends, drove BMWs for most of his life.

By comparison, absolutely hated anything Japanese. Seriously protested when my missus moved out there in the early 00s to work as an English teacher.

Similar story with my great uncle. Merville Battery veteran. Ended up becoming good friends with the German officer in charge of the battery after the war. Hated anything Japanese.

Were they really that much worse than the Nazis?
The Germans generally fought a decent war, at least in the West, with the misbehaviour generally the trademark of specific units who were known for it. That said, Douglas Bader apparently attended a fighter pilot function involving ex-Luftwaffe and his opening gambit was:
"I didn't realise we'd left so many of you bastards alive."

By contrast, the Japanese seemed to take every possible opportunity to behave in the most barbaric fashion imaginable regardless of which units were involved, though there were exceptions as 'Tales of Japanese Soldiers' makes clear. It's a strange transformation because, remarkably, the Japanese were exemplary in their treatment of prisoners during World War One.
 
It's very hard to believe that a Japanese occupation of the United States would have been anywhere near as benign as the US occupation of Japan.
Maybe, but benign is not a word that I would use for the US and Commonwealth occupation.
I've used wiki for convenience but there are many accounts- almost invariably from allied sources, not the whinging of the vanquished.
Link;
Occupying Japan

The quoted Australian Intelligence Officer/interpreter's account is in a free ebook from here;
Link;
Time of Fallen Blossoms
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
Maybe, but benign is not a word that I would use for the US and Commonwealth occupation.
I've used wiki for convenience but there are many accounts- almost invariably from allied sources, not the whinging of the vanquished.
Link;
Occupying Japan

The quoted Australian Intelligence Officer/interpreter's account is in a free ebook from here;
Link;
Time of Fallen Blossoms
I'm fairly certain that, given the choice, the unfortunates caught up in the Co-Prosperity Sphere would have settled for the Okinawa experience.
 
Nobody of that generation who had any experience of the Japanese would be surprised by this. It was part and parcel of their horrific code of conduct towards all non-Japanese. My father rarely spoke of his war service in India and Burma but assured me that the Japanese were vermin - and he would, probably, hold that view today if still around.


I met a few men who served against the Japanese, including at least 2 who had been pow's. To a man the hated the Japs, the ones who had not been captured would recount tales of finding mutilated bodies of some of their comrades who had the misfortune to be captured.
One chap claimed to be part of a unit that had been sent to clear a Burmese Island of Jap troops. His regiment and half a dozen flame thrower tracked vehicles went in, not one prisoner out of a supposed garrison of 1500 Japs was taken!
 
I've been nagged by a vague memory of a story I was told about Hirohito's State Visit. The Burma Star Association had been told not to parade on or near to the Mall in case they caused offence or embarrassment. The "story" that I heard was that they arrived individually and managed to, sort of accidentally, form up just before his carriage went by. This fine body of men were noticed by the Emperor just before they about turned and showed their backs. The nearest I can find to any coverage of that was a NYT article which remarks on the large but subdued crowds that greeted him and the fact that Lord Mountbatten pulled a sickie to get out of dining with him.

Queen and Quiet Crowds Greet Hirohito in London
 
I've been nagged by a vague memory of a story I was told about Hirohito's State Visit. The Burma Star Association had been told not to parade on or near to the Mall in case they caused offence or embarrassment. The "story" that I heard was that they arrived individually and managed to, sort of accidentally, form up just before his carriage went by. This fine body of men were noticed by the Emperor just before they about turned and showed their backs. The nearest I can find to any coverage of that was a NYT article which remarks on the large but subdued crowds that greeted him and the fact that Lord Mountbatten pulled a sickie to get out of dining with him.

Queen and Quiet Crowds Greet Hirohito in London
I don't know about the Burma Star Association but I do know that Federation of FEPOW clubs made a statement at the time to the effect of that while they did not support the visit, the Emperor was a guest of the Queen and, out of respect, for her they would not demonstrate.

I do recall the back turning on the occasion of son Akihito's later visit but I got the impression that few who turned their backs were war veterans.
I've only ever met one ex-FEPOW, a former private in the East Surrey Regiment, who had a lasting hatred of the Japanese (and who would blame him?) but I find that was not typical among those ex-POWs that I've encountered. One chap I met when I asked him about starvation he replied "Yes, but the Japs had the same rations as us" I'm not claiming that was a truth that applied everywhere, but that's what he said.

Maybe the selection I have met is not representative but I know that the ex-POW holding a life-long hatred is not as universal as might appear from this thread, and the ones who came to terms with their captivity and treatment seem to be the better off for it.
 

Nemesis44UK

LE
Book Reviewer
I don't know about the Burma Star Association but I do know that Federation of FEPOW clubs made a statement at the time to the effect of that while they did not support the visit, the Emperor was a guest of the Queen and, out of respect, for her they would not demonstrate.

I do recall the back turning on the occasion of son Akihito's later visit but I got the impression that few who turned their backs were war veterans.
I've only ever met one ex-FEPOW, a former private in the East Surrey Regiment, who had a lasting hatred of the Japanese (and who would blame him?) but I find that was not typical among those ex-POWs that I've encountered. One chap I met when I asked him about starvation he replied "Yes, but the Japs had the same rations as us" I'm not claiming that was a truth that applied everywhere, but that's what he said.

Maybe the selection I have met is not representative but I know that the ex-POW holding a life-long hatred is not as universal as might appear from this thread, and the ones who came to terms with their captivity and treatment seem to be the better off for it.
The Japanese might’ve had the same rations (I have trouble believing that) but they weren’t doing hard manual labour for 12-14 hours a day. The Japanese were certainly not as thin or malnourished as their POWs.
 

Nemesis44UK

LE
Book Reviewer
Like many others, my paternal grandfather fought in Burma. He and his platoon were resting when a Jap ran out from the undergrowth with a rifle which he fired at my grandad. He either had a stoppage or was out of ammo, so he used the rifle butt on my grandad, smashing out his teeth. A fellow soldier shot the Jap and killed him.

He never got dentures and wouldn’t have anything Japanese in later life.
 
in all fairness what's the point of wasting perfectly fine, white kitties?
it would be strange if they wouldn't be raped to be honest

(and before some moron will claim: no, I do not think it's something good).
 
I don't know about the Burma Star Association but I do know that Federation of FEPOW clubs made a statement at the time to the effect of that while they did not support the visit, the Emperor was a guest of the Queen and, out of respect, for her they would not demonstrate.

I do recall the back turning on the occasion of son Akihito's later visit but I got the impression that few who turned their backs were war veterans.
I've only ever met one ex-FEPOW, a former private in the East Surrey Regiment, who had a lasting hatred of the Japanese (and who would blame him?) but I find that was not typical among those ex-POWs that I've encountered. One chap I met when I asked him about starvation he replied "Yes, but the Japs had the same rations as us" I'm not claiming that was a truth that applied everywhere, but that's what he said.

Maybe the selection I have met is not representative but I know that the ex-POW holding a life-long hatred is not as universal as might appear from this thread, and the ones who came to terms with their captivity and treatment seem to be the better off for it.
This is the reason I enjoy this site so much. The above is a knowledgeable and thoughtful response. I suspect that the truth of what FEPoWs felt and how they lived with their own personal experiences were as many and varied as the individuals themselves. I've learned a huge amount from this thread - and had much of what I thought I knew busted as a myth. As in all history we are only left with the writings and recorded narratives of the most articulate and least ashamed.
 
The Germans generally fought a decent war, at least in the West, with the misbehaviour generally the trademark of specific units who were known for it. That said, Douglas Bader apparently attended a fighter pilot function involving ex-Luftwaffe and his opening gambit was:
"I didn't realise we'd left so many of you bastards alive."

By contrast, the Japanese seemed to take every possible opportunity to behave in the most barbaric fashion imaginable regardless of which units were involved, though there were exceptions as 'Tales of Japanese Soldiers' makes clear. It's a strange transformation because, remarkably, the Japanese were exemplary in their treatment of prisoners during World War One.
One of the oddest acts of the japs to me was regarding USMC personnel in china

on Dec 7 they captured the legation Marines in Peking and they spent the war as POW

there was a small railstop detachment who forwarded replacement marines to Peking. these 29 men were repatriated with the embassy civilians while the embassy guards werent
 
The Japanese might’ve had the same rations (I have trouble believing that) but they weren’t doing hard manual labour for 12-14 hours a day. The Japanese were certainly not as thin or malnourished as their POWs.
I wouldn't argue about that; I only quoted him to illustrate that by saying what he did, whether he believed it or not, he was demonstrating to me that he harboured no grudge against his captors.
 
Gen Sir Philip Toosey RA is the hero whose story should be compulsory read
Percy Herbert rasc survived imprisonment becoming a recognisable supporting actor post war
Major Eric Moss A+SH survived imprisonment too, I met him shortly before he passed away, a proper highland gentleman he saw off his party of nurses at the docks, choosing captivity over escape.
Territorials hostilities only and regular sojers all endured Japanese captivity

Eric Lomax RS forgave his captor, we should respect his right to do so, instead of choosing to hate for hatreds sake
 
I wouldn't argue about that; I only quoted him to illustrate that by saying what he did, whether he believed it or not, he was demonstrating to me that he harboured no grudge against his captors.

By the middle iof 1944, food was critically short in the home islands.
As an example, 40% of the workers at a Mitsubishi plant were reported to be suffering from Beriberi impacting production. Specific Laws against crop thefts had to be introduced. By the Summer of 1945, famine was on the verge of outbreak, and yet, the ‘unspeakably brutal’ Japanese still provided food for POWs in the Home Islands.

Ditto when they surrendered. With surprisingly few exceptions, the allegedly irredeemably ‘evil’ Japanese acted pretty correctly and followed the rules agreed. Compare that with the dangerous days to be a camp inmate or POW assorted at the end of WWII in Europe where many prisoners were either killed outright or murdered during forced marches away from liberators
 
One of the oddest acts of the japs to me was regarding USMC personnel in china
on Dec 7 they captured the legation Marines in Peking and they spent the war as POW
there was a small railstop detachment who forwarded replacement marines to Peking. these 29 men were repatriated with the embassy civilians while the embassy guards werent
Were one lot technically "diplomats" or on the list as "Embassy Staff" and therefore not combatants and the other lot weren't? There are all sorts of oddities and technicalities on protocols and diplomatic stuff.
 
By 1945 the Japanese had an indelible and well-deserved reputation for extreme savagery
.
Abd yet, the Americans who’d been fighting them with equal extreme savagery came to realise during Okinawa that the Japanrse were actually just like them.
The average Japanese did value human life, and could and did show just as much concern abd care for a wounded comrade as they did.

45BE55A3-4E8A-45EE-B2CE-6F236D092E3F.jpeg


They could have just left their gravely injured friend to his fate.

Savagery begets savagery, but the protected nature of the hellish fighting on Okinawa did away with a lot of the racist BS on both sides.
 
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