Ceylon’s Importance in Resisting the Japanese War Machine in the 1940s

Tony Donaldson has retrieved an old  war film which presents some aspects of these moments  …. and a nostaalgic visit to the island by retired British fighting personnel


Some PHOTOGRAPHS to capture the situation facing the Allies forces in British ceylon in 1941 and thereafter

Hermes sinking

Lt. Birchall whose Catalina [out of Koggal airport] spotted the Japanese raiding fleet and provided some warning before his plane was downed

SEE Jayantha Somasundaram: ““The Japanese Air Raid on Ceylon, Easter 1942,”  21 April 2019, https://thuppahis.com/2019/04/21/the-japanese-air-raid-on-ceylon-easter-1942/



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3 responses to “Ceylon’s Importance in Resisting the Japanese War Machine in the 1940s

  1. K. K. De Silva

    The gentleman in the white suit behind the Admiral at the Inspection looks like Sir Oliver Goonetilleke.

  2. Vinod

    The Japanese never intended this to be any more than a raid, not having the resources to invade. However, they chased the Royal Navy, with its tail between its legs, to Kenya.
    Admiral Layton called OEG, then civil defence commissioner, a “Black Bastard”, thus revealing the racism underlying the British Empire.
    The local population (though not the colonialist elite) basically hated their British overlords. Janaka Perera has described how a British/Malayan Chinese party penetrated 60 miles inland from the East Coast, pretending to be German-led Japanese, and were greeted as liberators by the British. My father used to take pot shots at British planes in Galle, and organised a company of local boys to act as guides to the Japanese, when they landed. The Cocos Islands Mutineers intended to hand the islands over to the Japanese, as the Indian mutineers had done on Christmas Island.

  3. Patrick Delaney

    Ha, ha, ha. The Japanese would have treated the locals the way they treated the Philippine people before.

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