Voices from Syonan
- Occupation Lifestyle from the Perspectives of Civilians
Eter Foo (Right)
Eter Foo was a part of the Medical Auxiliary Service, also known as St. John Ambulance. During the Battle of Singapore, he was often deployed to the front lines with no proper weapons to defend himself. During the Sook Ching Massacre, he was caught twice. In the first time, he was able to escape; however, for the second time, he was tortured by waterboarding and electrocution. He was later released, and became a spy to collect intel from the Japanese until the Imperial Japanese Army surrendered.
Colin Hamley (Image by ABC News)
Colin Hamley was assisting the Dutch Navy when Singapore fell. Eventually, his unit surrendered, and he was taken to Changi prison. Later, he would be forced to work on the Burma railway. He remembers a diet consisting of only small amounts of rice and a thin watery stew for every meal for months. He managed to find his brother while transferring between work camps, but his brother died from malaria, malnutrition, and dysentery later.
"Billy: My Life as A Teenage POW"
(Image by Treloars)
Billy Young joined the Australian Imperial Force at the age of 15. When he arrived in Singapore with 15,000 others, he had just five weeks of training. His battalion was captured when Singapore fell to the Japanese in February 1942, and they were later imprisoned at Changi. One day, Young and 1,500 other Australian soldiers were sent to the Sandakan Prisoner of War camp in Borneo. Out of the 1,500 soldiers ordered to the camp, only six survived multiple brutal death marches around the city.
In September 2016, Billy spoke to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation Radio National program about his experiences publicly for the first time at age 91. He also authored “Billy: My Life As A Teenage POW.”
Fall of Singapore:
Apology for War
Japanese Royal Family
Leaders of Pacific Asia War
Modern Chinese History
Southeast Asia Military Tactics
Women in War