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Fall Of Singapore

Discussion in 'The War In The Pacific' started by Dave War44, Oct 21, 2007.

  1. Dave War44

    Dave War44 Member

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    [​IMG]

    Newly Arrived Indian Troops in Singapore​


    Singapore was Britain's largest military base in South East Asia. The Japanese had recently kicked the British out of Malaya, and taken 50,000 prisoners in the process. Then, on February 15th 1942, general Percival was forced to surrender Singapore, and a further 80,000 British, Indian and Australian troops were made captive.

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    The Unconditional Surrender of Singapore Lt. Gen. A E Percival sitting opposite Gen. Tomoyki Yamashita.

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  2. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    I remember reading something about this debating Percival's early and easy surrender to the Japanese, the debate was about whether he should have taken more defensive actions and at least should have taken a fight to them! It ended with the conclussion he did the right thing as he was under equipped to fight the local villages never mind the Japanese army.. Something along these lines anyway .. :cry:

    Nice post Dave.. :thumb:
     
  3. Dave War44

    Dave War44 Member

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    I know there was at least a hell of a fight before surrendering Malaya. But the Indian III Corps, Australians and British were eventually overwhelmed. Maybe they knew the same would happen in Singapore...
     
  4. 10cents

    10cents New Member

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    Hmmnnn, almost everybody in Asia were overwhelmed. But every day paid for in blood bought another day for the Allies to prepare for a counter offensive. Let's just say the Japs were right on schedule in Singapore. :happy:
     
  5. Spitfire XIV-E

    Spitfire XIV-E New Member

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    Percival was in a hopeless situation I feel. Had he not surrendered then the cost would've been much greater in lives lost. However you do have to consider that most of the prisoners taken were used as Slave Labour on the construction of the Burma - Thailand Railway where many did not survive the brutality of the Japanese during it's construction.
     
  6. Jim

    Jim New Member

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    FALL OF SINGAPORE: General Percival's Choice

    It fell to an unfortunate young major named Wilde to carry the white flag toward Japanese headquarters. He reached Lieut. General Tomoyuki Yamashita at 2:30 p.m. and asked for conditions of surrender.

    General Yamashita had the conditions written out. At 4:15 Major Wilde left for the British lines. He promised to be back with an answer by 5:30.

    And so, what with the comings & goings, Major Wilde's commander, Lieut. General Arthur Ernest Percival, had less than an hour in which to make his decision.

    In less than 60 minutes he had to decide what to do with one of the four great bastions of the British Empire; he had to dispose of Britain's fate in the Far East. In less than an hour he had to make up his mind to do something that no sizable British Army had done since Major General Sir Charles Townshend capitulated at Kut-el-Amara in Mesopotamia in 1916, and, before that, since Cornwallis gave up at Yorktown in 1781. He had a matter of minutes in which to decide whether to shake Winston Churchill's Cabinet, to depress all of Britain, to undermine the Allies' faith in British fighting men.

    That was not much time in which to decide whether or not he would live up to the words which A. P. Correspondent Yates McDaniel had expressed just five days before: "For the defenders, this was the test of tests. Alternatives were simple and unqualified: death or victory."

    And yet, for such a civilized man, the decision was inevitable. Not death, not victory; something worse than death. There was no other solution, because the Japanese had done their job so very well.

    They had captured Singapore's reason for existence, the Naval Base. They had captured its means of subsistence, the Peirce and MacRitchie Reservoirs. They had flanked the city and destroyed or seized the airfields. They had cut off its rear by knocking out so many evacuating ships. They claimed to have sunk a light and an auxiliary cruiser, a submarine, two gunboats, a "special vessel" and eight transports, including one of 30,000 tons; to have damaged a light cruiser, a destroyer, two "special vessels," one torpedo boat and ten transports; to have forced the beaching of a Dutch cruiser, a minelayer, a transport.

    Victory was no longer the question. The opposite choice, death, would have meant the useless slaughter of civilians. And so General Percival made the hard, the humiliating choice. He went, as directed, to a Ford Motor plant at the foot of Bukit Timah, a hill where, earlier that day, there had been bloody fighting. There, at 7 p.m., after some palaver, he signed away large pieces of the land, the power and the pride of the British Empire.

    Source
     
  7. Tiffinata

    Tiffinata New Member

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    Something I have been trying to find more information about are the last mail boats out of Singapore.

    An uncle was on this boat and we only found out about it after he died.
    So far I have found very little information, other than digitised newspapers, but it is probable I'm looking in the wrong places.

    Hoping someone might be able to point me in a better direction.

    Thanks.
     

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