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Gaining An R.A.F Pilots Brevet In WW II

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Gaining An R.A.F Pilots Brevet In WW II

Old 1st Aug 2016, 18:19
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A friend of my parents had been captured at Singapore and was forced to work on the Burma Railway. Fred treated me like an additional son, never complained but was never in good health. Although I had no personal experience I have as much difficulty with the Japanese treatment of prisoners as I do with the the Holocaust, and I cannot accept that the populations of both countries did not know what was being done in their name. On both issues I find "forgiveness" very difficult.
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Old 1st Aug 2016, 18:55
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Fortunately, I wasn't around at that time but my father definitely was.
He was an infantry medic during the SWPA campaign and, to his dying day, for numerous reasons, he never forgave the Japs.

He did tell me that, if one had been selected for beheading, one should have considered it a privilege.
Lesser mortals were used for bayonet practice.

At subsequent War Crimes trials, one of the most common defences offered was "military necessity".
Probably as a consequence of some of the things he told me, during my business dealings with the Japanese, I decline to bow before their menfolk.


p.s. Sergeant Siffleet, pictured above, was an Australian special operative and 'coastwatcher' who'd been operating behind enemy lines in the Aitape
area on the north coast of New Guinea.
That photo was found on the body of a Japanese officer in 1944.
.

Last edited by Stanwell; 1st Aug 2016 at 19:35.
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Old 1st Aug 2016, 19:19
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As with others here, my mother would never forgive the Japanese for what they did, even though no family member was involved.

They're just weird.


(Sorry, last sentence due to be deleted by Mods, but that's my belief. They are just SO different.)
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Old 1st Aug 2016, 21:32
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My father died as a POW in Japan within four months of its defeat. I have read enough to imagine his suffering but do not know the specifics. I once met some survivors of the same camp as his. They were polite but would not talk about their experience.

On the more general front the Japanese nation, in the guise of its governments or its emperors, has never shown contrition or remorse for the conduct of its troops in the 1930s/40s towards POWs or civilian populations in the occupied countries, though it has uniquely apologised to South Korea I believe.

British ex-POWs turned their backs on the Japanese Emperor, and hence their own Monarch, during a State Visit to London. One can only imagine the strength of feeling that imbued those old soldiers to do that.

Weird? Hardly begins to describe them in my view.
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 08:08
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The Chinese haven't forgotten either. Every time that there is a spat between the Chinese and Japanese governments Chinese TV rolls out the footage of the Nanking Massacre. There is no shortage of photographic records; almost all taken by the Japanese themselves, so if you want to be sickened, Google it.

One Japanese newspaper, the equivalent of a UK tabloid rag, kept it's readers up-to-date with a competition between two Japanese army officers as to who was leading in a competition to see who was beheading the most Chinese.

They were both past a century.
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 08:33
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Wander00
In my humble opinion (Danny's not keen on acronyms!) I believe that if you have never been in the shoes of a victim of such atrocities it is not your position to forgive but it is your duty to never, ever forget.
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 10:06
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FantomZorbin,
...(Danny's not keen on acronyms)....
"What do you feed 'em on ?" (from well loved "Fools 'n Horses"). Seriously, whatever gave you that idea ? Danny positively revels in them (and "Apocryphal" is another of his favourites - but he cannot abide "Incredibly", used as an all-purpose superlative).

Snag is, either he's forgotten what they stand for, or he can't think of the one he wants, gets annoyed, bad for his blood pressure !

On the matter before the Court: only those who suffered, or their loved ones did, at the hands of the Japanese, are entitled to forgive. The rest of us must look back in horror at what was done in those years, and never forget. For those who forget their history are condemned to repeat it.

On our part, we could not but admire the fanatical courage and tenacity of the Japanese infantry. They fought till they died - and regarded anyone of any race who did not as a sub-human coward, fully meriting the barbarous treatment they meted out to him. This goes some way to explaining - but not excusing - their actions.

Yet to what extent should we "visit on the sons the sins of the fathers ?"....After all: "The past is another country, they do things differently there". Is Germany now the country of Auschwitz or the country of Goethe and Schiller ?

On yet another front, Danny has finally despaired of trying to get "Pocketmags" to take his good money in exchange for a digital "Fly Past". Daughter (who runs very good Mitsuibishi "Lancer") went round to local newsagent yesterday, should be in tomorrow, will read, learn and inwardly digest - then deliver judgment in due course.

Danny.
 
Old 2nd Aug 2016, 10:14
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only those who suffered, or their loved ones did, at the hands of the Japanese, are entitled to forgive. The rest of us must look back in horror at what was done in those years, and never forget. For those who forget their history are condemned to repeat it.
an exceedingly difficult task to reconcile today. It is certainly idle and presumptuous in this context, to talk about forgiveness being accorded by someone not a victim of atrocities . It is wrong to ascribe any reaction or sentiment to circumstances however macabre in a way that implies the grief is being borne by proxy. In other words, and more broadly, never presume to believe you are 'entitled' to a judgemental viewpoint simply because you are appalled, or conversely over-joyed. Neutrality does not necessarily translate into indifference. Our world is full enough of people mouthing off every day as though their opinions are valid, well-founded and worthy of close attention. Pigs-arse. (I am probably just as guilty , considering the drift of this post.)

Last edited by Fantome; 2nd Aug 2016 at 12:57.
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 10:34
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Danny
I grovel in mortification ... is it the dreaded 'Smilies' that irk you?


For those who forget their history are condemned to repeat it
Oh so very true, if only those who inhabit Whitehall would remember it.

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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 11:24
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I had a Dutch neighbour here in SA, as a boy he spent WWII in a Japanese internment camp. His father was in the Dutch Colonial Service in the then Dutch East Indies. As an officer in the Colonial Service he also had a commission in the Army Reserve.

The family was captured and because he was in army uniform, the father went to a POW Camp, the mother and my neighbour to be went into an Interment camp.

The father died soon after VJ Day, but the mother survived to almost 100.

I never understood why my neighbour drove a Nissan.
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 11:32
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Fantome (#2029).
...Our world is full enough of people mouthing off every day as though their opinions are valid, well-foundered and worthy of close attention...
Just like this Thread ! (My opinions are very well "foundered", indeed).
...I grovel in mortification ... is it the dreaded 'Smilies' that irk you?...
Wot Smilies ? (No grovelling allowed here - except by me).

Danny.

EDIT:
...It is certainly idle and presumptuous in this context, to talk about forgiveness being accorded by someone not a victim of atrocities..
Recalls a past Prime Minister of this country, who famously apologised for the British part in the Slave Trade (which was ended by law in 1807 - three or four generations before his time !) You cannot judge the past by the standards of the present.
D.

Last edited by Danny42C; 2nd Aug 2016 at 18:09. Reason: Addn.
 
Old 2nd Aug 2016, 11:50
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I think the biggest problem with Japan is that they have never apologised for their soldiers actions. Germany did inasmuch they accepted the wrongs of the Holocaust and the Swastika is a prohibited symbol.

Chinese womenhood had a bad time in the 20th Century what with the end of the Q'ing Dynasty and numerous civil wars and invasion by Japan. It continued during the post war civil strife and one thing that the women's branch of the Communist Party demanded was that rape be written into the Constitution as a capital offence.

It still is.
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 12:59
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My father, who served with the Chindits and gurkas in Burma against the Japanese, would never afterwards deal with them in business. His later job took him all over the world, and he happily dealt with Germans, Italians etc, as friends but would never travel to Japan, or talk to them, sending colleagues to meet them if need be. He lost several friends in the jungle, so its very understandable.
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 13:00
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Fareastdriver,

Trouble is, in the words of a learned Judge long ago: "It is an accusation easy to be made, but hard to be proved, and harder still to defend, be one ever so innocent".

Danny.
 
Old 2nd Aug 2016, 16:06
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FZ - I never will.


At the going down of the sun, and in the morning
We WILL remember them
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 17:34
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Danny #9032

My opinions are very well "foundered"
Think you missed your vocation mate . . .what a proof-reader you might have been. You'd have had no trouble sorting out all the labels on all the rum bottles. Incidentally in Tasmania today you still hear occasionally "It's a rum do" . . orů "Jeese cobber. . . . he's a rum 'un.". Digressing further, Australian white-fella history as once taught, used to cover the so-called Rum Corps. Because in the early days of the colony (say 1788 to 1820) there was rum aplenty and little in the way of coin of the realm, the payment in rum for goods and services was common practice. So the NSW Corps quickly became known as the Rum Corps.

That shocking photo you posted of the Jap with the raised sword and his victim, the bravest of brave coast watcher, would be for many people quite obscene. It is disturbing enough to know that these atrocities occurred without graphic depiction. Is not the subject at root, mans' inhumanity to man, with many sub-headings such as crime and punishment?
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 17:41
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From the Australian War Memorial records -

CHERRY, Percy Herbert

Enlisted: 15 March 1915, Franklin, Tasmania
Last Rank: Captain
Last Unit: 26th Infantry Battalion
Born: Drysdale, Victoria, 4 June 1895
Home Town: Cradoc, Huon Valley, Tasmania
Schooling: Cradoc Public School
Occupation: Orchardist
Died: Killed in Action, Lagnicourt, France, 27 March 1917, aged 21 years
Cemetery: Queant Road Cemetery, Buissy
Plot VIII, Row C, Grave 10
Memorials: Australian War Memorial, Roll of Honour
Awarded Victoria Cross


Last week at Pozieres in France a ceremony was held in remembrance of Australians who fell
in one of the most bloody battles in history. It was indeed moving to read about Captain Cherry
and grand- niece who was there last week.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news...19df6e767eac1b
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 18:30
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Coastwatchers played a significant part in the Battle of Guadalcanal. After the naval battles the Japanese tried to bomb the Americans into submission. The defending Hellcats, were no match for the escort Zeros unless they had a height advantage. The coastwatchers, predominately Kiwis, used to observe from the western Solomon Islands and pass on the information about the attacking aircraft. This gave the Hellcats time to take off and climb so that could dive and build up inertia to get through the Zero escort.

They used to be there on their own, totally reliant on the locals for food and also trust that they wouldn't let the Japs know where they were.
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 19:06
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Danny

A question that is asked because of your combination of WWII experience and current abode.

When in India/Burma did you ever come across the battalion of the Green Howards that was out there?

If so, have you since met up with any?
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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 19:20
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Yes, Fareastdriver.
Sergeant Siffleet and his small team were betrayed by a local tribe who thought that they knew on which side their bread was buttered.
I understand that other local clans soon sorted them out 'New Guinea Style'.
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