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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

War Is The Grim Reaper and More...

Took a memory trip down the War History of Singapore, via this tour "Lion's Trail". A few destinations were covered. From Boat Quay to the Supreme Court, down to the Changi Museum.

Maybe I'm just too SNAG-gy, but certain points of the trip touched me emotionally. Narrations of the tragedies during WW2, coupled with the hard facts right in front of you, its tough not to feel.

There is a chapel at the Museum, or rather, the Museum was set-up at the chapel. I did not catch much of the starting lines during the narration but my attention was caught when it was mentioned that the artefact, a Cross, was made from empty bomb shells by a British soldier, Staff Sergeant Harold Stogden Raoc, who was held POW during the WW2. I can't remember details, but its goes around how he survived the war despite being sent to various zones, even the notorious Death Railway. After the war, he passed away on the plane home. His wife back in Europe had also died during the war thus leaving 3 orphans. It was only when one of their sons, George, became a grown-up that he learned the truth of his father's fate and also the will of this father that the Cross, is to be returned to Singapore. Thus, soon after, the Cross is sent back personally by George, to the chapel where it now resides, in what was a supposely very emotional trip for him. He had never gotten this close to his father before.

It is a humble chapel yet the message is very clear. War had taken lifes and torn families apart. You hear stories of these, and it easy to blame people, Japanese, who had invaded our land. And yet, at the very chapel, if you look carefully by the sides, were thousands of origami chains, sent by Japanese School Students, as condolences. Anger mellows into sorrows. You can only feel sorry for the events that had taken place. Messages were tagged on the board from people who had experienced WW2, who had felt the horror and remembered the pain.

How many of us had taken peace for granted? How many of us innately believe that War will never take place? In Singapore, we were brought up in an era of peace and War is just what we had read about in History text. It was all stories. It was all about memory work for grades.

Today, the War was real. It was all there, inside that chapel.

1 Comments:

At 2:20 PM, Blogger emiriyoshikawa said...

It makes me wanna rape all the jap girls that cross my path... sometime pretty jap boys too...

My blood boiled whenever the jap govt tried to cover up, white wash themselves or when their fucktard PM worship their war criminal.

But hate will just lead to more hate... and I shouldn't take it out on this generation as long as they admitted the country's past wrong doing and not make the same mistake... but I'll never forgive nor forget!

 

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