Sunday, March 8, 2009

China-Burma-India Booklets for Soldiers

Today's item is an interesting one, specially for people who love reading literature. I will be showing two of army pocket guides published by China-Burma-India division, one by India-China division, and another by private party.

To start with, shown below is "A Pocket Guide to India" booklet prepared by "SPECIAL SERVICE DIVISION" of United States army. The booklet was printed and approved by "WAR AND NAVY DEPARTMENTS", WASHINGTON, D.C. sometime in 1942.

The booklet was prepared for United States army men who were being positioned in India to serve on China-Burma-India front. The small booklet provides very interesting facts and figures about India. Some of the numbers and details were even unknown to me. It gives very appealing account of India from outsider point of view.

Well! I just love this booklet. If you read it, you will know why India has always been a altogether different country and one of most fascinating place on earth. Now, don't start on "When I was in India......" :D

The booklet has a statement by the United States' Department of State, dated August 12, 1942:

American Soldiers in India

1. The sole purpose of the American forces in India is to prosecute the war of the United Nations against the Axis Powers. In the prosecution of the war in that area the primary aim of the Government of the United States is to aid China.

2. American forces are not to indulge to the slightest degrees in the activity if any other nature unless India should be attacked by the Axis powers, in which event American troops will aid in defending India.

3. American forces in India will exercise scrupulous care to avoid the slightest participation in India's political problem, or even the appearance of so doing.

4. In the event of internal disturbances American troops will resort to defensive measures only should their own personal safety, or that of other American citizens be endangered or for the necessary protection of American military supplies and equipment.

You can read complete booklet here: A Pocket Guide to India

The link is maintained by one of the most resourceful website China-Burma-India: Remembering the Forgotten Theater of World War II. When such website exists then as less I talk about China-Burma-India division or CBI (as it was known popularly) here the better. The website is loaded with facts on contribution done by CBI in turning the tide. I leave all my readers to browse the gem of information on that website.

The same website lists another pocket guide "The Calcutta Key", prepared by "SERVICES OF SUPPLY BASE SECTION TWO", information and education branch of United States Army Forces in India & Burma sometime in 1945.

The booklet was printed by the "The Indian Press Limited", in Calcutta. The booklet has interesting forward section by then Brig. Gen. R. R. Neyland. The booklet provides an introduction to Calcutta.

Calcutta was one of important center on CBI front. The city served in war with its airbases and harbor which was one of largest in Asia at that time.

It was important transit point for all the allied forces moving in and out of Burma and China from India.

You can read complete booklet here: The Calcutta Key.

A third booklet on same China India front is shown below. The booklet was issued by India China Division of Air Transport Command of Unites States Air Force.

Note that all of these booklets were marked as restricted with the statement: "This publication is not approved for mailing home, but may be taken out of the theater by individual. FOR USE OF MILITARY PERSONNEL ONLY."

But the above booklet that I have carries another page pasted inside to it which states that you can mail this home!. The page shown below is dated 1 September 1945.

And the last of all booklet that I want to show today is a very small pocket guide welcoming allies forces to Bombay. The booklet is titled "Welcome to Bombay: V For Victory ...".

This is private booklet published by B. R. Gobhai & Co. and printed by G. Claridge & Co., Ltd. in Bombay. The booklet carries Churchill's message and a letter by Katharine Lumley who was president of the hospitality for forces stationed in Bombay. The booklet carries facts & figures about Bombay and lots of advertisements by companies located in Bombay. Another very interesting booklet!

I think with this I started another thread in my blog :D In coming weeks, I will continue to show more literature materials on war. So, keep hanging around!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I always inspired by you, your thoughts and attitude, again, thanks for this nice post.

- Norman

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