Memorial to 36th Division Arakan 1944

Discussion in 'Burma & India' started by Shiny 9th, Mar 13, 2019.

  1. Shiny 9th

    Shiny 9th Member

    Thanks for that idea.It could well be there. I will see if there are any refs to Sinzeweya in the 9th Btn War Diaries . It is possible Major Cash did not take the photos of the memorial himself, but obtained them from other sources. Compared with some he took himself, they do appear of high quality. Thanks for all useful input
     
  2. JITTER PARTY

    JITTER PARTY Well-Known Member

    You may be correct for I believe that I may have seen those photos before. I can't remember if it was in a published source or elsewhere. I may even have copies in my collection, but my filing system, and memory, seem to have failed me, yet again.
     
  3. Shiny 9th

    Shiny 9th Member

    Jitter Party, I know the problem! But it does make me think that the photos may not be exclusive to Major Cash. I have found the reference to the memorial now in Murray Gillings, The Shiny Ninth.He says on p 128,speaking of those who did not make it back home " Many of them had not returned from Burma......In The Arakan a simple memorial to fallen comrades was fashioned on a rock.That may be their only lasting monument but rain and sun may have eroded even that."
     
  4. idler

    idler GeneralList

    Not what I was looking for...

    36dd.jpg

    And a useful wider view:

    36d.jpg

    From this 'lost photos' site:

    Lost McWilliams
     
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  5. Shiny 9th

    Shiny 9th Member

    That wider view gives a much better idea of the landscape. And clearly shows the ceremonial involved in the unveiling. Thanks for posting. All helps.
     
  6. Shiny 9th

    Shiny 9th Member

    AS006a Memorial construction Burma-L.jpg And here we have the same memorial under construction....Kindly sent on behalf of the son of Harold Squires who served with 9th Royal Sussex. View attachment 247111
     
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  7. PackRat

    PackRat Well-Known Member

    Finally found a very precise location for this memorial mentioned on page 129 of The Red Dragon: The Story of the Welsh Fusiliers 1919-1945 by Peter K. Kemp:

    To commemorate by name the officers and men of 36th Division who had fallen in the Arakan, it was decided to erect a permanent war memorial in Poona. A simple memorial tablet was also let into a large rock near the eastern side of the Bawli-Maungdaw road, three-quarters of a mile north of Wabyin and 300 yards north of Milestone 125. Beneath a small cross and the divisional sign are the words: "In memory of the Officers and Men of 36 Indian Division who fell in the Arakan, 1944."​
     
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  8. idler

    idler GeneralList

    Fantastic!

    But has the Google car got there yet?
     
  9. sol

    sol Very Senior Member

  10. sol

    sol Very Senior Member

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  11. idler

    idler GeneralList

    That's got to be it. Whilst a trace of the rings might remain, it looks like someone might have taken a potshot at it.
     
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  12. PackRat

    PackRat Well-Known Member

    Excellent find, Sol, that's surely what's left of the memorial tablet.

    closeup.jpg

    The book extract also mentions "a permanent war memorial in Poona". I wonder if that survives (or was ever constructed).
     
  13. Shiny 9th

    Shiny 9th Member

    So pleased you have this precise location. It makes sense that it was recorded in a book about the Welsh Fusiliers as they were part of same Division as 9th Royal Sussex . Thanks for getting back with the info.
     
  14. Shiny 9th

    Shiny 9th Member

    Agree that this is the rock.Looks like a new pagoda has been built behind it and there are white posts at the corners of the rock.Maybe someone has realised the significance of the memorial?
     
  15. sol

    sol Very Senior Member

    I highly doubt that. It looks to me more like someone thought that huge rock in the middle of the field would be a good place to build a pagoda. It wouldn't be a first pagoda build on the top of some unusual looking rock. While memorial plate is not clearly visible it seems to be in very poor state. I don't think that local population would have high attachments to some old memorial in foreign language, at least not high enough to build a shrine around it.
     
  16. idler

    idler GeneralList

    Looking at GoogleEarth, the pagoda appeared between 2010 and 2013. It looks like a result of the re-Burmanisation of the area now that they've got rid of the Rohingya. I think it's in that corner of the world.

    Which side took out the memorial is anybody's guess.
     
  17. idler

    idler GeneralList

    Wabyin-Memorial-lr.gif
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2021
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  18. Shiny 9th

    Shiny 9th Member

    Some educated Burmese are fairly interested in the history of their country in the war.I have had contact from a man trying to establish a museum in or near Katha, on the Irrawaddy and he wanted information about events there and the units who were involved. He has provided some information boards already.I realise that Katha is nowhere near the Arakan, but in time, who knows how things will develop.
     

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