Page 23 - Austin Roberts' Second World War
ISSUE : Issue 47
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1988/1/1
Above: Austin and his sister-in-law Reesie (Clarissa) Petrie Lumley, about 1948. Left: Nov. 16, 1941. Canadian troops land in Chi? na. Photo: Public Archives of Canada. had basements and so on. On Christmas Day, they dropped and fired a thousand and ten bombs and shells on that area on that day. Now we were dug down into the basements and everywhere we could get dug in. Every fel? low just hunted a hole and crawled into it. Myself, I went into a sewerage thing, under the road. Other fellows did the same, under everything. As I say, they chased us back and forth over the island, from one part to the oth? er. So, finally they got a foothold, any? way. Our camp is gone. But this island is 10 miles long and 3 miles wide. There's many houses on the island besides our camp. For instance, there was Stanley Village. Repulse Bay. different ones that were vil? lages. On one side of Hong Kong, there was this city of Hong Kong itself. Two million people into it. We didn't fight in Hong Kong at all. They didn't attack Hong Kong City at all. They were attacking all a- round, clear of that. They had good logic for not doing it. You'll find out. Anyway, as I say, they got a foothold in Stanley Village. That's how come we were in these different houses, trying to dislodge them and get rid of them. So it went on, back and forth and back and forth and back and forth and back and forth. Every now and then a plane would go over and drop leaf? lets saying. "Give up.... Give up. and we'll all be friends." sort of. And of course, we didn't want to be friends. We wanted to see what we could do. Anjrway. this contingent of Canadians--2200--in one sense we were there under British rule. We had our own brigadier and everything, but still the British were actually the head bosses. So on December the 21st they gave the Brit? ish commander an ultimatum: "Quit. Or we'll bomb the city of Hong Kong." Now, you have two million people you're responsible for, in a sense, eh? They gave them so long--I forget exactly how long it was--I think it was 24 hours--for an answer. They tried to haul it out as long as they could. But on December the 24th. the man that was in charge of the British forces in Hong Kong surrendered to the Japanese. He surrendered the island to the Japanese. There was a lull for 3 or 4 hours, until they found out that the Canadians hadn't surrendered. They gave the same ultimatum to the Canadians: the Canadians said, "Go to hell. The only way we'll surrender is if you guarantee you'll take prisoners." 'Cause they didn't plan on taking any pris? oners. And they said. No, they wouldn't do Home of Solid Birch Furniture Sofas Sofa Beds Coffee & End Tables tBfejfidt Rockers Recliners Tables & Chairs All Your Home Furnishing Needs 1115 Kings Road, Sydney River, N. S. BIS 106 * 539-1715 Enormous Showroom at SYDNEY RIVER STUBBERT'S Convenience Stores Film * Frozen Foods * Magazines ' ' 172MainStreet, Sydney Mines Snacks * Lottery Tickets " 24 Hours: • 1170 Kings Road, Sydney River • Corner George & Glenwood, Sydney • 275 Commercial Street, North Sydney • Florence • Bras d'Or • 83 Pierce Street, North Sydney "We're there to serve you whenever you need us!" (23)
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