He is somewhat dismissive of the reason for that deployment. Which he did. Of course Harry Truman did the right thing he sacked him. He [MacArthur] was just a big blowhard. What annoyed me was the fact that General George Bennett did the same thing from Singapore and he was regarded as — nobody. Most magnificent man, he used to go down with his urn of coffee to the Australian troops and he used to come back crying at the endurance.
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He looked at me and said. George witnessed first hand one of the most terrible acts of the war perpetrated by the Japanese against Prisoners of War. We were promptly taken there and these chaps came in and stood in front of us. For some one so young, George certainly had a good measure of compassion and maturity as revealed in the advice he gave to the survivors.
They kept us in Borneo another seven months. Then I came back and went to Liverpool transit camp and applied to get out of the army. They refused again, because I had experience in the printing trade. They sent me to the army printing presses in Surrey Hills. George says there was no point in lamenting missed opportunity and that his approach to people and circumstances in life is to take them as he finds them and make the best of things. I had to go back, I was 24 and a half, and I had to go back and finish three years.
Apprentices that were under me when I went into the army were now tradesmen and teaching me laughing about the fact that the roles had been reversed.
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I think that cost me a lot in time and patience. He does admit there is one thing he wished he could have done, that was to play cricket for Australia. He was a top player and captained a very good team during his army service. I was very very keen that I would play competitive cricket. Then he continues.
George has the most incredible memory for detail from all parts of his life, including that his first date with wife Barbra coincided with the first edition of the Sunday Telegraph. I did well in printing, I advanced myself. I also after that I became president of Probus, was editor of a journal there. I conducted outings, I did speeches, I wrote articles. I never worried about computers. If I had of got a lap top I could have written a book.
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source site Time Out says 3 out of 5 stars. Users say. Read more about the Canberra home front Canberra at war. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share using email. Molonglo internment camp Seventy-seven children and their parents were interned at the Molonglo Internment Camp.
Canberra home front Air raid trenches were dug in preparation for air raid drills and evacuations.