Diary of Arthur Seaforth Blackburn, April 1942 - November 1944, Part 25 of 26

Second World War, 1939–45
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ting a ralging ap graw around the oath 1944 Egt 15. His afternoon a large number of office as were tame is out to wat co gte camp yte bey bad slew on t there for3 some considerable lerie& ling or 20 the contry appric a arup ofthen who were resting for a moment or two & spoke & them indicating that they working hard enouga. Io was a very hot day. This group were not brought in from is until after 1730 hrs I before being dismissed from the parade ground four officers, De H aaeg adered to tell out. te Dinnidifia, man Dowe 7 a 11 cat Cung Sa9cast r typater of tafing n haman aha) was then sent for te told the four oftlen with a Canibes ea gat they had been logfing. the Nvertreter the Leniad beat them all i severely wird by medical r te & with nthgou the centrycaucam t husching two of them downs ugcking them wouldt t (to beat them all rep. When be got to made who has been eiebo to tu call breyg b eanest ther mrring be ste t that g 2t attende a caig Ftly bs struck lard against sacagas i b i were taffed & the souy officer were giatered to return to teisquarter gase One wep had aney do par bean daton up twice (Maj. Howe) being ordered t repre nexe morning pt obe lirs to receive his third beating up. On return to quarters all the officery conserned had to if camed by the glows. sorth artl arrival at his quarters t medus preatment to catoen collared had to be carried a sowto in a stratcher, &e was admitted to lospital were sefocted consesion Early vent io s sad be a author e eat oute turned out bopil. H lead ee admitted to hospital & ordered that was usable to walka bad to be car an a stretoher to his quarters, ase this was with =in jact a protect lodded with tim on a panin the full knowledge of tes camp com of lo sot wet with no satisfaction whatever. Arthr 5 Clabl
20 26 28 w Calance (if any shall be estributed upon p unistrative stay gveral plicin putsided t te a soring & enternal Dliging in agternoon. We lave a fw tyestck in latel living two quite good ones, hatslife was seleved from te clld today_ he was awarded three daysing the sells resauge he was raught in the enlisted neust a bad to speale to one of tep. He was no deto stand at attention in his geg for 5 Houro one drys to eet at attention for 3 urspn another occasion setting on the floor of couree, got & coal mick say Ball call last night at 0200 en. All equds tarned an mrning & a number turng oue out i policing for plicing uteede the p this aftern Weath she keeping peasant with pol nights. Exection today by a rflias from redical step He passed rapidly through tre end proar ouce rtat was all noe ed of him. Her ase day but rather Low night. Am defeeloping another voil Iuspection still continuing out wef have on no more opite Irspecting officer. A number of officers tead tr names taken tay fa various offences Brig Cuallon foral annure offteer out of another egelad when, boe of them bppened to be taking their grefcise of the same time out on the exercue ground. It will be interesting to de of there are any debelopents Very hot dully night last nigae. I was foote endlya & read for about & by Kange than Ja Alloted san of 1 ls yesterlay & 50 devplosed a violent heaslaghe & bain in my eyeswhich kept me awalie, until after midnight. Jout beine will call last night an annuun was wire that cans, gawes musit sto would be permitted all day today. Last might after ll call one of the Dutch officer, u telt a bit unwell & lay down on liii ted when wey went to him sbertly afterwards found that he was dead: Ven dull being day with ligle ron in the late of thnpon. Sundoy usual services. Hot day buy nice night arenson Wagled bty 50:6 an vcrease of Chilos Rig oday Another pleasue di road of cyney it cas with bvigly, bee sun but col orgage. td Bee call last nigat at 0280lrs ew number tickets for is to wear wsued ty. All a is vank ste is eliminated & the new fichet simply has our P.O.W. number on it. 40t day. Quite uneventful. Food peens to be a little better lately Roll call last night at O345 hes. Hat Suetry night. Case of typhoid bad occurped in the damp t precautions are being taken
1944 a2 Two more suspected typhod mses, fope we are nt in tor an exidemic, Suger was issued yesterday add shortage of sotle is ofcoming very acute most ofter camp being entirely willlut cigarettes & tobaco cooter night last night this maning three squads, 9, 10 & 12 wae iete all duties ter a libsted nea were ousernel theis wit roed offa not allaw one outde te rop or ang plerpost wliteres. Have desclosed aw alcess on to righe leg,an ag which is petty peciful trouflerane vet Itag is Chectered agains be are unged to he extreact carl os wt we use. at y000 les onder were would bet all Anaici eneralo Crigs io Dutch& Antralan nrrow, caaring with the aMlorce of 10 Bilas of lugrage & rot would be prosed forwarded on in due vurse-destination innswn.
196 left Hhir Kawa at 1230 hre, cring land beagoge Sunda Acc. limited to 10 kiles, in weight, rest of our bagage being pashed ready for despatch subsequently Driven by lorry to Ragi Kulway etation, Extrained at 1400 lys & arrived at Haits at 1800 lin Trousfred to a small narrow mace engay bain & amiod at taits any go 1900 bn But but a but whise was roped off to egate usa ontend yot to communiate in an way with any widness in t camp good meal st as imatel on arrival soup with meat in it amgte rice. slap on raised soar pattrin with 2 Clarlets each. no pacility for Ostritse aree opeu bucket clanding sutalde ty dooy of the but Ne wasling arargento except some butheteruat nontyo2 Roveille at ot Roll cll at 0610 followed by breakfast imediately Ante says rice. working partee from camp were pradea & taken out as soon ao their ana was smiled at 0730 be we un pardet & led tod ruminetn acorgside canps allowed t strwgeg lavea good wasly ets, at 0830 hos we were again banded & canp conde led us out way exercise marcer of about swile we then balted did 5 minse plisical exerciten we me ben mancued back nr to cmp to a gua cane need which had sieneys + seauguls were Geentliamles & ordered t die ity & cat away all sugar are roots, big stond ots. We cntinued on this lgh wwith t min Emcheole in overy hour writte 1135 warched bak to came to middd well soup & rice at 1400 bro we were again praded & tken to same field to continue wer at 1500 ls wals was etohed & we wee ted to a swrming got- deep crowgle to sevenI give anotte balho tven returned to camp. soon after we arrived bac camn condt & conducting onices aae to de bet to enquire what warm clothing we bad will us. we expeaied that we had pactiy none laving been limited to 10 kilos. A disaunion took place about this & finally he went away to return some time later with the information that the ront party from shire lawe would arrive tomorow night tat our
heavy bargage would be koused on with ton, tt we ann epack taking 80 blos will us teat we mest pack all the leavy clothing we porsessed Aapt dola 9 that we would tall be leaving ts nent day Manerday Matay 5 Oct Talsen for a batle in strean at 0730& at 0830 taken out to a ploughed field & set to wh pecking up stones until 1115. In evening 18- 15 officers from no 2 squad 93O.R's arrived ald our heavy baggage. Reparlsed in our but taking all warm clotting. In ayternoon wee told we would be trovelling by asmplane In evening were told we must get up at 0500 los & leave at 0600 lis. Ry ttime all packing etc finished it was nearly midnight. Assured that our beavn baggage would come on after us general injression of tits camp is that food is aryle- new in coup 2 one of the tre days we were there. Work is pretty hand & men seom to be a bit harassed. Wed 4o Oct Reviille 0500 loved off at 06001 travelled by eagar train to Aerodnmeac Haits. There rivided into six parties, my party charp stevens, unl. Ac novery Callaghan, sef & keeton & but into very confortable planes. Well cushioned seats along side with ample room for buggage. Foole off at 0900 livs & landed in the Souther tolong of Japan I think) at 1400 lers. Treatment throuabout Grep was excellenc + arrangements its very efficient eningdiated on kanding were rushed in busee & a ot where an encelent meal te be

1944 Sept 15. This afternoon a large number of officers were turned out to work, cutting raking up grass around the outside

of the camp.  After they had been out there for some considerable time - 2 hrs or so - the sentry approached

a group of them who were resting for a moment or two & spoke to them indicating that they were not

working hard enough.  It was a very hot day. This group were not brought in from work

until after 1730 hrs & before being dismissed from the parade ground four officers, Din Major

Dinwiddie, Major. Howe, I.A.K, Capt. Cumper, J.E & Capt Fraser H. L (Aus) were ordered to fall out. The Interpreter

(Yamanaka) was then sent for & told the four that the sentry accused them of loafing on the job. They

denied that they had been loafing. The Interpreter then beat them up - all of them - with a bamboo pole

& with his fist. The medical corp. (Grumpy!) then took his turn & beat them all up severely with his

fists, knocking two of them down & kicking them whilst they were on the ground. The sentry concerned

was then call over & he proceeded to beat them all up. When he got to Fraser - who has been sick & had

attended sick call & received treatment this morning - he struck him so hard that Fraser was

knocked completely off his feet & his head struck hard again some concrete causing a severe

gash. Proceedings were then stopped & the four officers were ordered to return to their quarters, the

one who had only so far been beaten up twice (Maj.Howe) being ordered to report next morning at 0800

hrs to receive his third beating up. On return to quarters all the officers concerned had to receive

medical treatment for cuts etc caused by the blows. Shortly after arrival at his quarters, Fraser

collapsed & had to be carried across to hospital on a stretcher. He was admitted to hospital

with suspected concussion. Early next morning 16 Sept. The nipponese authorities found that he

had been admitted to hospital & ordered that he be at once turned out of the hospital. He

was unable to walk & had to be carried on a stretcher to his quarters.  All this was with

the full knowledge of the Camp Comdt - in fact a protest lodged with him on the morning 

of 16 Sept met with no satisfaction whatever. Arthur S Blackburn Brig.



Sept 19

Contd balance (if any) shall be distributed upon payment therefore

to the Administrative Staff. General policing outside all

morning & internal policing in afternoon. We have

had a few earthquakes shocks again lately, yesterday

having two quite good ones. Ratcliffe was released

from the cells today - he was awarded three days in the

cells because he was caught in the enlisted men's hut

where he had gone to speak to one of them. He was

made to stand at attention in his cell for 5 hours

one day & to sit at attention for 3 hrs on another 

occasion - sitting on the floor of course. Got a bottle

of milk today.

20. Roll call last night at 0200 hrs. All squads turned

out for policing this morning & a number turned out

for policing outside the camp this afternoon. 

Weather still keeping pleasant with cool nights.

21. Inspection today by a 2/Lieut from medical staff. 

He passed rapidly through one end of our hut

& that was all we saw of him, clear cool

day but rather close night. Am developing

another boil.

22. Inspection still continuing but we have seen

no more of the Inspecting Officer. A number of

officers had their names taken today for

various offences. Brig. Challon for talking to 

an man officer out of another squad when both

of them happened to be taking their exercise at the 

same time out on the exercise ground. It will be

interesting to see if there are any developements.

23. Very hot sultry night last night. I was foolish

enough to read for about 1/2 hr longer then my 

allotted span of 1 hr yesterday & so developed a

violent headache & pain in my eyes which

kept me awake until after midnight. Just

before roll call last night an announcement

was made that cards,  games, music etc would

be permitted all day today. Last night after

roll call one of the Dutch officers, Posthumous,

felt a bit unwell & lay down on his bed.

When they went to him shortly afterwards they

found that he was dead! Very dull heavy 

day with light rain in the late afternoon.

308 24. Sunday. Usual Services. Hot day but nice night.
Heavy rain in afternoon.

25. Weighed today. 50.6 an increase of .6 kilos. Big

load of syrup etc came in today. Another pleasant day 

with bright, hot sun but cool breeze.

26 Hot day. Roll call last night at 0230 hrs. New

number tickets for us to wear issued today. All reference

to rank etc is eliminated & the new ticket

simply has our P.O.W. number on it.

27 Hot day. Quite uneventful. Food seems to

be a little better lately.

28 Roll call last night at 0345 hrs. Hot 

sultry night. Case of typhoid has occurred

in the camp & precautions are being taken



Sept 29. Two more suspected typhoid cases. Hope we

are not in for an epidemic. Sugar was issued

yesterday but shortage of smokes is becoming

very acute most of the the camp being entirely 

without cigarettes or tobacco. Cooler night

last night.

30. This morning three squads, 9, 10 & 12 were isolated - taken off

all duties - so far as enlisted men were concerned, their huts

roped off & not allowed to come outside the ropes for any

purpose whatever. Have developed an abcess on the right

leg, on the calf, which is pretty painful & troublesome. Water

shortage is threatened again & we are urged to be extremely

careful of the water we use.

At 1400 hrs orders were issued that all American, 

Dutch & Australian office Generals & Brigs. would

move tomorrow, carrying with them a total of

10 kilos. of luggage & rest would be packed &

forwarded on in due course - destination 



Sunday 1944 Oct 1. Left Shiri Kanwa at 1230 hrs, carrying hand baggage

limited to 10 kilos, in weight, rest of our baggage being

packed & ready for dispatch subsequently. Driven by

lorry to Kagi railway station. Entrained at 1400 hrs

& arrived at Haito at 1800 hrs. Transferred to a small

narrow guage "sugar" train & arrived at Haito camp

at 1900 hrs. Put into a hut which was roped off to

isolate us & ordered not to communicate in any way

with any prisoners in the camp. Good meal served to

us immediately on arrival. Soup with meat in it &

ample rice. Slept on raised board platform with

3 blankets each. No facility for latrine except three

open buckets standing outside the door of the huts.

No washing arrangements except some buckets of water.

Monday Oct 2. Reveille at 0600. Roll call at 0610 followed by

breakfast immediately. Ample soup & rice. Working

parties from camp were paraded & taken out as

soon as their breakfast was finished. at 0730 hrs 

we were paraded & lead to a running stream

alongside camp & allowed to strip off & have a

good wash etc. At 0830 hrs we were again

paraded & Camp Comdt led us out for an

exercise march of about 1 mile. We then halted

& did 5 mins physical exercises. We were then

marched back nearly to camp to a sugar cane

field which had been cut & ploughed & were

given “chunkles” & ordered to dig up & cart away

all sugar cane roots, big stones etc. We continued

on this work (with 10 mins smokeoh in every hour)

until 1135. marched back to camp to midday meal.

Soup & rice. at 1400 hrs we were again paraded

& taken to same field to continue work. at 1500 hrs

work was stopped & we were led to a swimming

pool - deep enough to swim - & given another bath &

then returned to camp. Soon after we arrived

back Camp Comdt. & conducting officer came to our

hut to enquire what warm clothing we had with

us. We explained that we had practically none

having been limited to 10 kilos. A discussion took place

about this & finally he went away to return some time

later with the information that the next party from

Shiri Kawa would arrive tomorrow night & that our


heavy baggage would be brought on with them, that we 

could then repack taking 30 kilos with us,  that we must 

pack all the heavy clothing we possessed (up to 30 kilos)

& that we would all be leaving the next day (Wednesday)

Tuesday 3rd Oct. Taken for a bath in stream at 0730 & at

0830 taken out to a ploughed field & set to work

picking up stones until 1115. In evening 18 - 

15 officers from no 2 squad & 3 O.R's arrived - also

our heavy baggage. Repacked in our hut taking

all warm clothing. In afternoon were told we

would be travelling by aeroplane. In evening 

were told we must get up at 0500 hrs & leave

at 0600 hrs. By time all packing  etc finished it

was nearly midnight. Assured that our

heavy baggage would come on after us. 

General impression of Haito camp is that food

is ample - meat in soup 2 out of the three days

we were there. Work is pretty hard & men seem

to be a bit harassed.

Wed - 4 Oct. Reveille 0500 moved off at 0600 & 

travelled by "sugar" train to aerodrome at

Haito. There divided into six parties, my party, Sharp

Stevens, [[?Neil], De Fromery, Callaghan, seef & Beeton & 

put into very comfortable 'planes. Well cushioned

seats along side with ample room for luggage.

Took off at 0900 hrs & landed in the Southern Island

of Japan (I think!) at 1400 hrs. Treatment throughout

trip was excellent & arrangements etc very efficient

Immediately on landing were rushed in buses to

a hotel where an excellent meal - the best 



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