Archaeologists are investigating the lawn that is believed to cover the mass graves of the victims of the wartime slaughter in Singapore.
The vacant lot behind the main building of Alexandra Hospital hides the bodies of about 200 victims killed after Japanese troops struck the hospital ward and operating room on February 14 and 15, 1942. Is believed to be.According to the island Government of Singapore website..
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At that time, Alexandra Hospital was known as the British Military Hospital and was run by a unit of the Royal Army Medical Corps. Singapore was part of the British colonial Malaya at the time, and also governed several states in the southern Malay Peninsula.
After Britain withdrew from Singapore in 1971, the hospital became a government-owned private facility. And the area believed to cover the mass grave will be part of a major redevelopment of the site, which is scheduled to be completed in 2030.
A spokeswoman for the National Heritage Commission (NHB) in Singapore said in light of the historical significance of the hospital facility that authorities would “perform surveys and archaeological assessments and of the ruins prior to planned redevelopment. Document the heritage. ” The ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute, a government-run educational institution, told Live Science.
Massacre in the hospital
Japan’s invasion of Singapore from the occupied Malay Peninsula was one of Britain’s worst defeats. Second World WarJapan invaded Malaya in December 1941, and Japanese soldiers expelled British troops from the peninsula after only 70 days of combat.
On February 8, 1942, Japanese attackers, with extensive support from fighters and artillery, passed through the Straits of Johor, which separates the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula from Singapore. island.
The current massacre at Alexandra Hospital began on February 14 and ended on the morning of February 15, just hours before British troops in Singapore surrendered to Japan. As the BBC reported..
The hospital was at the forefront between the invading Japanese and the retreating British. According to witnesses, it was clearly indicated by a red cross, in which a British officer with a white flag attempted to formally surrender, but instead Japanese soldiers stabbed him with a bayonet. He then claimed to have been shot from the hospital grounds.
1 Witness is Arthur Haynes, British soldiers being treated malaria A hospital that was saved by the slaughter. According to Haynes, Japanese troops rampaged in hospitals and bayoneted or shot more than 200 patients and staff in wards and theaters.
Haynes wrote a four-page letter explaining the 2008 auction massacre of her daughter.
The body was later believed to have been buried in a mass grave behind the hospital building and is now covered with grass under investigation by archaeologists.
Archaeologists began investigating the site in December 2020, according to a spokeswoman for the Singapore government.
So far, a team of six has used ground penetrating radar (GPR) equipment to survey the lawn, which has been able to reveal where the soil has been disturbed by drilling and construction in the past. I will.
“The study aims to identify and identify the extent and nature of anomalous subsoil features, such as old building foundations and walls, soil cavities, backfills, and services that may result from past activity. “The spokeswoman said in an email.
The team has completed the GPR investigation and analyzed the findings to see if further investigation is needed. “If so, and if materials are found, they will be further evaluated by archaeologists and the NHB.”
by The Straits TimesFurther investigations include digging where GPR equipment has shown anomalies, but most areas remain untouched.
Archaeologist John Mixic of the National University of Singapore said the study could contribute to Singapore’s colonial knowledge by revealing more about the relationship between the British military and Singapore’s local community. He told the Straits Times. However, “although it may be possible to find mass burial sites for victims, it would be difficult to assign specific archaeological findings to the genocide event itself,” he said.
Initially published in Live Science.
Mass grave of WWII massacre victims could be hiding under field in Singapore Source link Mass grave of WWII massacre victims could be hiding under field in Singapore