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Moon over Malaya

Title is "Moon over Malaya" by Jonathan Moffatt & Audrey Holmes McCormick. Published in 2002 by Tempus Publishing. 256 pages.

A tale of Argylls and Marines. The story of the 2nd Battalion, Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders during the campaign in Malaya 1941/42. First hand accounts from the best trained and most formidable British infantry formation in Malaya. You will be shocked and surprised to discover just how many casualties this unit inflicted on the Japanese 5th Division. How it had perfected jungle tactics and how it incorporated the devastating machine gun fire of armoured cars to savage Japanese outflanking moves. It remained intact with very light casualties until overwhelmed and almost destroyed by Japanese armour at the Slim Bridge battle. Returned to Singapore, it absorbed the Royal Marines from HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse and became known as the "Plymouth Argylls". It then fought in the final battle for Singapore Island. It tells the stories of survivors finding their way back to friendly lines, it details how many escaped after the surrender of Singapore. It covers the horrors of the POW's in Japanese hands.

If only every British and Indian battalion had been as well prepared and aggressive as this unit, the Japanese would never have reached Singapore! A first class book.

Image shows a Lanchester armoured car that the Argyll's used to such devastating effect against Japanese infantry. only 39 were ever built.


As an aside and a bit of useless military knowledge the RM inter unit rugby competition plays for the Argyle cup in honour of the "Plymouth Argyles" and there's usually one commando trained Argyle officer on secondment to the Corps.

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