IWM Harold Douglas James 3/2nd Bn Gurkha Rifles

Discussion in 'Burma & India' started by mikky, Sep 24, 2013.

  1. mikky

    mikky Member

    Another very interesting interview.

    IWM Harold Douglas James 3/2nd Bn Gurkha Rifles with 3 Column 77 Bde

    Object description

    British officer served with 3/2nd Bn Gurkha Rifles with 3 Column 77 Bde during First Chindit Expedition in Burma, 1943
    Content description

    REEL 1 Enlistment in Indian Army, 1942. Period with 8 Gurkhas in India, 1942- 1943: units recruiting areas in Nepal; Gurkha soldier's expectations of their British officers. Period with 3/2nd Bn Gurkha Rifles with Chindits in India, 1/1943-2/1943: transfer to Chindits at Jhansi, 1/1943; question of unsatisfactory sudden recruitment of Gurkhas to First Chindit Expedition; question of effect on Chindit morale of having to leave casualties behind; composition of 77 Bde; journey from Jhansi to Imphal, 1/1943; amusing story of doctor's criticism of Orde Wingate's use of flit gun, 2/1943; his first meeting with Orde Wingate; estimate of Orde Wingate and question of his misuse of Gurkhas. REEL 2 Continues: Recollections of operations with 3 Column, 77 Bde during First Chindit Expedition in Burma, 1943: question of using Gurkhas columns as decoys; entry of column into Burma, 2/1943; consequences of Gurkhas inability to swim; organisation of first air drop and inadequacy of rations; coping with rigours of march; arrival at Rangoon-Myitkina railway at Nankan, 6/3/1943; attack on railway, 6/3/1943; personal contact with Michael Calvert after blowing up of railway line; achievements and movement of Chindit columns. REEL 3 Continues: pursuit of column by Japanese, 3/1943; action with Japanese at River Irrawaddy crossing; decision to give lethal morphia dose to wounded Gurkha; crossing River Irrawaddy; effect on Gurkha morale of having to leave wounded Gurkhas in Burmese village; orders to Michael Calvert to blow Gokteik viaduct; sing song in jungle; ambush on Japanese near Pago. REEL 4 Continues: Japanese counter- attack; casualties during ambush; question of inaccuracy of official history's account of action; orders to return to India and abandon plans to blow Gotek Viaduct; crossing River Shweli; Michael Calvert's decision to leave two Gurkhas behind; decision to break up column; Japanese measures to stop dispersal groups from re- crossing River Irrawaddy; discovery of boat to cross river; refusal of Gurkhas to become wounded on last lap of expedition into India; reception in India.

  2. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    An interesting and brave young officer from 1943.

  3. mikky

    mikky Member

    Many thanks for the photograph, bamboo. I reckon it makes all the difference when you can picture the man. Brave indeed!


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