NMBVAA Essay About The History of Malaya In The 40s and 50s 


National Patron
His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK Mc (Retd)


Essay About The History of Malaya In The 40s and 50s


MEMORIES OF YESTER YEARS

Author Unknown
(See footnote at the end of the essay)

For those who were born after 1948 they have been spared the terrifying experience and hardship faced by the citizens of Malaya during the years of communist insurgency war, arising from the attempt by the Communist Party of Malaya (CPM) under the leadership of Chin Peng who originated from Sitiawan, Perak to wrest political power from then the British Colonial Government which was administering the country. Through the militant arm of CPM Chin Peng waged the guerilla campaign of so-called war of liberation from 1948 until 1989. During the 41 years of insurgency war many innocent citizens of the country were killed and maimed, along with the soldiers of the Malayan Armed Forces and the British Commonwealth Forces who fought a hide-and seek war against the communist terrorists (CTs).

When Malaya got its independence from Britain the then Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman Jiwa met Chin Peng in Baling in 1957 to persuade him and the members of CPM to give up their so-called struggle and rejoin society. However, Chin Peng turned down the offer and returned to the jungle to continue the guerilla war until 1989 when he finally agreed for CPM to lay down their arms in a peace accord with the Malaysian Government signed at Haadyai, South Thailand. Some of his men were allowed to come back to rejoin society, but for Chin Peng he was barred from returning to his home town, Sitiawan for fear of retribution against him by those people who have lost their parents, siblings and relatives who were killed during the emergency.

This is a good summary of the history of the insurgency war of Malaya (later Malaysia) from 1948 onwards until the late fifties.

A piece of Nostalgia for us oldies who may still have vague memory of those years gone by. One thing that confuses me is that my memory tells me that Tungku declared Independence at the Mederka Stadium but now we are told that happened at Independence Square in front of Selangor Club. From the picture below, it was clearly at Mederka Stadium. I am afraid Malaysia has a tendency to alter events.

Excellent pictures-now very rare! Brings back what the Emergency meant to Malayans then.


"Come Out With Your Hands Up"!

"Come out with your hands up"!
"Berenti! Siapa dalam sana"! "Halt! who goes there"?

A walk down history lane, before Merdeka.

MALAYA: Circa 1948 - 1960:As I remember between the cobwebs of time. The Communist uprising.


YAM Tunku Abdul Rahman declaring Malaya's Independence. Aug. 31st. 1957.

Freedom has its life in the hearts, the actions, the spirit of men and so it must be daily earned and refreshed, else like a flower cut from its life, giving roots, it will wither and die.


The Malayan Emergency.

The 12 years jungle war fought by the Malayan Security Forces, British, Australian, New Zealand army, British Commonwealth against the communists led by their leader Chin Peng.


Chin Peng. Leader of The Malayan Communist Party.

It started with the assassination of three British estate managers at Sungei Siput, Perak. This was later followed by the burning of rubber estates, sabotaging of installations, derailment of trains, burning of buses, generating civil unrest all over the country.


Malayan communist soldiers. (Actual picture, taken from old military postings.)

The CT (Communist Terrorist) soldier was well used to living in the jungle. Food and other supplies came from the jungle gardens of the fringe squatters and surrounding kampongs (villages).


Actual picture of a communist camp in deep jungle.

He had jungle workshops to repair his weapons and equipment, jungle hospitals for first aid treatment, a network of agents and sympathizers in village, town and city, and a cowed rural population to coerce for food, money, information and sanctuary.


A burnt bus. The military checking out the area.

His discipline, field craft, navigation and minor tactics were good and his weapon handling adequate. He relied on surprise in 'hit and run' tactics such as the ambush and, (initially) could be ruthlessly cruel in murdering, mutilating or kidnapping people of influence and their families, village headmen, teachers, local government officials.


This was the currency in use then.

Most guerrillas were Chinese, though there were some Malays, Indonesians and Indians. (Chin Peng, now 80, his Malay wife, his comrades-in-arms Abdullah CD, Rashid Maidin are today living in Southern Thailand).


Rover car. Made in England.  Petrol would be from Standard Oil (later becoming Esso).

The Malayan Emergency. Communist uprising. Circa 1940s & 1950s.
When I was young.

Going to Singapore during school holidays from KL to Singapore took 7 to 9 hours because of the many roadblocks, police checkpoints. The ferry across Muar river took 45 minutes. Ferry across Batu Pahat river 30 minutes, subject to river currents. If after a heavy rain add another half hour.


Muar river ferry, 1955.

The wooden ferry was actually a barge pulled by a motorboat tied alongside and could carry about 5 cars and a lorry on each trip across. There were no bridges then. Most times, the ferry landing ramp will not come down on reaching other side of river, so passengers, the men will have to jump up and down on the ramp to bring it down so the cars can disembark. I had fun jumping but my weight then did not help any.


Soldiers in a jungle camp

All the way there will be police or military checkpoints manned by local police or Gurkhas, or British, Fijian or Australian soldiers.


Military Checkpoint

Areas or regions with the most communist activities were known as 'black areas'. Negeri Sembilan, Segamat, Yong peng, Johore, whole of Pahang, Perak.


Road to Kluang 1950. With Police checkpoint.

Those areas deem safe were 'white areas'. Perak, Pahang and parts of Selangor were 'black'. New villages were constructed as well curfew was imposed.


Rural villages being moved to new villages.

New villages.

No food was allowed to be carried in your cars, or bicycles for fear the communists will get it. Rubber tappers on bicycles will be frisked. They were only allowed to carry enough for their lunch.


Food rations being given out to new villages.

Malayan police station. 1950's.

On one occasion going to Singapore, we had to turn back halfway because of communist activities. There was a communist ambush near Yong Peng where a bus was burnt.


Picture shows actual communists bandits as they were also known then. Taken from old military archives.

Johore Bahru customs checkpoint. 1950's.

Another similar incident was near Tanjong Bidara, Malacca when we happened on the scene of a bus burning, the passengers were safe waiting for the police or military to arrive.


Bus burning after ambush.

Malaya food ration card for those living in re-settlement black areas.

The communists had by then disappeared into the jungle. We turned back. Curfews were quite common at various small towns in 'black' areas. Thus any trip anywhere had its uncertainties of arrival. Unlike children of today the moment leaving for anywhere asking, "what time we arriving"? Those days was, "will we be arriving"?


A military police checkpoint.

People in the resettlement camps were subject to searches and curfews - and made to labour on the plantations.

Cooking then was with firewood, or charcoal. We would get ours delivered by bullock cart. A rolled up lighted newspaper would be used to start the fire. If I did not disappear fast enough, I had to 'volunteer' to help get the fire going by blowing air thru a short, hollow bamboo pipe.


A local bullock cart.

Needless to say, we sometimes had ash decorating our food receiving enquiring stares from my mother. I remember one incident, three days before Chinese New year, the Indian man arriving with his load of firewood (from felled rubber trees) and while he busy unloading the firewood carrying into our kitchen storeroom, I wanted to see how cows behave when firecrackers explode underneath them.


Fire Crackers

And those days firecrackers were the size of cigars and one can imagine the sound it makes! Traffic was stopped, people waiting for buses ran for their lives. Some cyclists fell into a drain as all first time witnessing a driverless bullock cart with two cows stampeding down the road helter skelter, with the Indian man running behind after them. One hand holding his sarong, other hand gesticulating frantically, cursing and swearing at his cow's ancestors. While cyclists scrambling out of the drains swearing at him and his ancestors.


Kuala Lumpur General Hospital, Circular Road.

I had learnt cows don't appreciate firecrackers exploding underneath them, and can jump very high like in a cowboy rodeo as well outrun a car. It was fortunate no one had seen my experiment, as my mother was quite handy with our house status symbol, the rattan cane. The Indian fellow did however mentioned on his next delivery of firewood his cows produced less milk than usual.


Chinese New Year Firecrackers.

Very often while I was still sleeping in the morning, there would be loud screams downstairs, chairs being overturned, pots and pans falling on the floor and my mother or the maid standing on the kitchen table yelling my name. A snake had decide to appear between the firewood while they about to start the fire to boil water, or a 6 inch centipede, or a scorpion.


A Malay Kitchen

I could by then differentiate the kinds of screams. The loudest and longest one would be if their fingers had encountered a mice nest. It was not uncommon to hear similar screams from our neighbours too, as mice seems to love making homes in old, dried firewood.


1949. Malaya wins the Thomas cup.

I had by now come to learn my mother could jump on a table without the aid of a chair. Not an easy feat when wearing a sarong. Telling my mother to wait while I wash my face, brush my teeth would not be an option. She and the maid holding up their sarongs while standing on the table looked like table top striptease dancers in cabarets. Laughing was not advisable.


The 1949 Thomas Cup winning squad.
(From left): Chan Kon Leong, Yeoh Teck Chye, Teoh Seng Khoon, Ooi Teik Hock, Lim Chuan Geok (non-playing captain), Wong Peng Soon, Law Teik Hock, Lim Kee Fong and Ong Poh Lim.

Malaya Bt. USA 6-3, semi final. Malaya beat Denmark 8-1 in the finals to win Malaya's 1st Thomas cup.

Of course the neighbours would later hear of my prowess at getting rid of snakes, centipedes or mice. The Indian firewood seller would on his next delivery receive a ten minute lecture from my mother, of how her first born had risked his life, in tones befitting a sergeant major in the army, to save her and the maid. And he would in turn would swear and promise that we can pee on his grave after he dies of old age if any more snakes appears.


Old days fast food.

Can be quite tricky squatting and holding a steaming hot 10 cents bowl of noodles. Of course on and off my mother and the maid kept improving their table top jumping skills. The Indian man mastering his apology skills and we promising to visit his grave few times when he dies of old age.

It was during this period when the communists were very active with train derailments, burning of buses, ambushes on isolated police stations, and the murder of British, American as well local estate owners.


A typical jungle hut.

They lived in the jungles, though some did hide out in 'new villages', or towns. All villages on the west coast was now fenced with security personnel on armed duty ensuring no food was smuggled out or stolen by them. The government was going on a strict, 'starve them out' policy.


1948 Ford car.

My grandfather, an estate manager and planter owned a similar Ford car. However, his car was armoured, with a steel plate protecting the front screen with two small slots for the driver to navigate and an armed escort to look for any problems when on the road. There were steel plates covering all the windows, needless to say the car could only achieve 30 mph max because of the weight.


Lonely estate road.

You can imagine the heat in the car when traveling anywhere. No travel was done anytime after 4pm either due to a curfew being imposed in nearby towns or for fear of a communist ambush.


Communist camp in jungle.

Quite often if traveling to town to get food supplies it would be in a small, well armed convoy of 'SC's, (Special constables), and military personnel in their armoured vehicles.


Jerantut, Pahang, Malaya. 1950's.

There was no bridge then. Instead a ferry. Picture shows a military patrol waiting to cross.

We would during school holidays be invited to his estate somewhere in Central Pahang, especially during rambutan or durian seasons and staying at his huge, rambling, colonial style brick and wooden bungalow.


Old colonial home

'Coolie lines' (later known as labour lines,) where the SC's, rubber tappers, or estate employees, Chinese, Malays and Indians lived with their families in wooden terraced homes was down a laterite road about 500 hundred yards away. There was also a coffee shop and a small grocery store.


A rubber estate house

The bungalow and surrounding other estate homes are isolated and to reach the nearest neighbour, another estate owner, one has to travel many miles down a small narrow estate road with rubber trees in straight rows on either side, two miles off the main road, as well passing thru virgin jungle.


Rubber estate road.

The jungle.

An 8 feet high fence, with a barb wire perimeter fence running along both sides circled the approximate 10 acres of my grandfather's bungalow and Coolie Lines. There would be hundreds of empty cigarette tins, milk cans filled with small pebbles hung on the fence at regular intervals.


Barb wire perimeter fence

They rattle when touched, or when fence is shaken. Thus any disturbance or encounter with the fence would attract the many armed SC's on duty around the entire barricaded complex.


Special Constable's (SC), bunker.

There were sentry posts, well armed SC's with their Bren guns or Sten guns in bunkers constructed from coconut or rubber tree trunks at the four corners. As well some located at where the estate workers lived. In between there were powerful spotlights at nights, their bright beams directed at the surrounding rubber trees and nearby jungle. Armed SC's would patrol the perimeter regularly, day and night to ensure the fence had not been tampered with or broached.


Gun bunker.

The double story bungalow we stayed had sandbags at every window, upstairs and downstairs. And the thick Chengai (hard wood) wooden windows had slots to look thru as well aim a gun should there be a terrorist attack. My cousins and I were given very strict rules never to play near the windows and where to take cover should there be an attack.


A Communist Terrorist.

Even though we were in our very early teens, all of us were taught to handle the guns located in locked cabinets, from .45 calibre automatic pistols, shotguns to sub-machine guns and had fun when practicing at a nearby shooting range.


Colt .45 Automatic pistol.
Hit anything at 25 yards, it's habis cherita, or game over!

Should the sentries raise the alarm at night, by banging on a big tin drum, all the lights in the house would be switched off. We had all undergone training practices where to take cover in the darkness, and to only talk in whispers.


Bren light machine gun

A Tommy gun.
Shoots up to 50 bullets. This gun doesn't take prisoners. Anything within 30 yards will be minced meat.

Once a week a British or Australian army patrol would pay us a courtesy visit and we kids getting lovely chocolates, army biscuits. The SC's tins of Woodbine cigarettes. We would also offer them drinks and fruits of the season, but they declined our offer of durians when in season.


British soldiers on patrol.

Orang putehs (Caucasian soldiers) never acquired the taste for durians, they not too keen on the scent especially, 'like eating a banana in a bloody latrine', they would exclaim.


British army patrol.

Once a day, sometimes at nights at different times, there would be a phone call from a police station twenty miles away testing, ensuring our phone line was not cut and everything was alright.


An estate house.

A coded word would be used to identify either party as the communists were known to make phone calls to unwitting estates prior an attack. Should the call from the police station not receive a reply, an armed police or military patrol would be despatched immediately to the estate.


Malaysian forest stream.

Daytimes I would be playing football or badminton with my cousins and friends from the homes nearby, or playing in a nearby stream. Or looking for spiders to fight, always under the watchful eyes of sentries, we do not stray near the perimeter fence.


Valetta plane dropping leaflets.

Sometimes a plane would fly overhead, its several attached loudspeakers blaring out above asking the communists to surrender, same time dropping thousands of leaflets.

Government Leaflet Translation

ATTENTION.
ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT MESSAGE.
Since the federation of Malaya achieved independence on 31 August 1957, in the first seven months,
215 MCP (Malayan communist) PERSONNEL
HAVE COME OUT TO ACCEPT THE MERDEKA OFFER.

This number includes high ranking personnel who hold posts like Border Committee Secretary, Regional Committee member, etc. Even these high ranking personnel have realized that the Merdeka Offer is a good offer to accept.

THE PRIME MINISTER OF THE FEDERATION, TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN, IN A PRESS CONFERENCE HELD ON 27 MARCH HAD THE FOLLOWING WORDS TO SAY TO ALL MCP (Malayan Communist Party) PERSONNEL:

215 of your comrades have already accepted the Merdeka Offer which is the largest number for any similar period since the emergency began.
This merdeka offer is still open, and is being extended until 31 July. I know there are many more of you who want to come out.

If any of you were thinking of holding out in the mistaken idea that operations against you will be relaxed after my target date of 31 August 1958 I give you this warning.

THERE WILL BE NO RELAXATION WHATEVER AFTER THAT DATE.


RAAF Dakotas

Dakota planes of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) used for dropping food supplies or government leaflets asking the communists to surrender.

The wind would sometimes blow them towards where our bungalow was, and we would pick them up...and as toilet paper was not in vogue yet, it became very useful, the right size too. Thus every time we hear a plane flying nearby we hoped for the wind to blow our direction.


A jungle terrorist camp.

I was also unanimously appointed chief chicken catcher and executioner, at 11 years old the oldest among the cousins. This when my two grandmothers, (grandfather had two wives) mother and several aunties, uncles decide to have chicken curry for lunch or dinner. I would select a couple of prospective chickens, all big Rhode Island chickens, my cousins and friends slowly encircling one, I then pounce on it. Then the next one.


Rhode Island chicken.

Apart from being an expert chicken catcher, I was also entrusted with their decapitating, though not without some hilarious moments when one decides to seek freedom, flying all over the kitchen minus it's head if my aim was not good enough.


Chicken curry.

Imagine the confusion in the kitchen with 9 kids, aunties, two grandmothers, my mother all yelling out advice to catch it. Or running away while I stalked the headless chicken, not to mention a couple of sentries rushing over with guns to check out the commotion.

During rambutan season my cousins and I would hide under the nearby rambutan trees with our catapults early evening, after informing the sentries and shoot the many flying foxes eating the fruits.

And having the experience of earning money from cutting newspapers, I would sell the two or three flying foxes I shot down to the Indian tappers who cook curry with them for 10 cents each. My mother thrilled to learn the apple of her eye having good business acumen at a young age.


Flying fox.

The outdoor latrine is situated about 30 yards behind the house. And if nature calls at nights, we have to call out to the nearby sentry post we making our way to it. It was just a fifteen feet deep hole in the ground.

The spotlights would be switched on as soon as its twilight, as darkness comes early in jungles and estates, and sentries on duty would be on high alert starring into the darkness beyond the trees. Some spotlights would be manually operated and the sentry would move the lights all around his section of the perimeter fencing.


Outdoor latrine.

While another sentry will keep an eye open for any unusual movements in the dark jungle outside.

One night I had an uncomfortable tummy and ran to the latrine forgetting to call out to the nearby sentry on duty. He, I guess was relaxing and smoking looking in another direction. In the darkness of the fairly large, brick latrine before I could turn on the light switch I knocked over an empty pail someone had carelessly left near the door. It sure made loud clanging sounds rolling around.


A 1950s sub-machine sten gun.

Just as I switched on the light, there was loud clicking of guns being cocked and a very loud, "BERHENTI! SIAPA DALAM SANA"? (HALT! WHO GOES THERE"! I immediately yelled out my name and what I was doing. Again, the loud threatening voice boomed out, "KELUAR! ANGKAT TANGAN TINGGI"! (Come out with your hands above your head!)

My urgent downloading had to be postponed.

One hand holding on to my unbuttoned shorts, one hand over my head I stepped out smiling sheepishly knowing it was my fault not calling out earlier.


Safe conduct pass.

Leaflets dropped by planes into known Communist areas offering them a safe conduct to surrender to the Malayan authorities.

There were four sentries aiming their guns at the doorway as I stepped out. They burst out laughing at seeing me trying to hold up my shorts, one hand on my head. Glad they had a sense of humour, at my expense.

But not my father, finishing my business and back in the house was given a finger in my face lecture about my forgetfulness, and not accepting my explanation it was an urgent call. Its funny how mothers will accept a son's explanation, but not fathers.


Gurkha soldiers searching for bandits or communist terrorists.

Jungle night sounds can be intimidating to those not familiar. Cicadas with their shrill mating calls, night jars giving out their haunting cries, owls softly hooting away, faraway monkeys or gibbons calling out to each other.


Thick jungle undergrowth

The sentries listening for any unusual or unfamiliar sounds. Outside the perimeter fence, the SC's had laid lots of old dried branches and twigs thus anyone stepping on one would cause a loud crackling sound. Sometimes the noisy night sounds would suddenly all stop and there would be an errie silence. The sentries would immediately point their spotlights all over checking to see anything suspicious, suspecting most probably a python or king cobra snake out hunting for food.


Wild animal caught in spotlight foraging for food.

At night my uncle or one of the sentries would let loose the 6 half breed guard dogs from their respective kennels, the house's first warning should the dogs start barking at anything moving along the perimeter. The dogs were fed only in the morning and lunch time, nothing at nights so they wouldn't go to sleep.

Quite often we would hear bombs being dropped from planes on suspected terrorists camps somewhere far away beyond the hills, or planes flying low overhead dropping pamphlets in three languages asking the communists to come out and surrender.


Lincoln Bomber flying over Malayan jungle dropping bombs, or supplies to army outposts.

One night around 2am all of us got woken up in a hurry when the sentries sounded the alarm by banging on an empty oil drum.


Moonlight over the jungle.

Without waiting for instructions all of us rushed into a room which had sandbags all around and told to keep quiet while the men, my grandfather, my father, uncles all in their pyjamas would grab their shotguns, pistols and carbines and quickly positioned themselves at their previously arranged barricaded windows. Nobody talked but used hand signs.


Communist attack from ambush point. (Actual picture)

They seeing a bright orange glow in the sky some miles away, some sounds of gunfire.....a neighbouring estate was being attacked, some rubber trees being burnt. Everyone was tensed, guns at the ready and all of us kids, women were told to lie down on the floor and keep very still. Nobody made a sound.


A forest fire far away.

The communists were known to attack two estates simultaneously same night. The dogs were barking like crazy. The SC's were all at their posts, machine guns cocked and ready. My uncle would stand by the phone, first checking to see if the line had been cut. Then should there be an attack, he would immediately inform the police twenty miles away. Nobody slept that night. Dawn soon arrived, the first rays of sunlight coming thru the small window slots, but still terrorists were known to attack at first light. So nobody left their posts till the all clear was sounded, three loud, long blast from a shrill police whistle.


A burning rubber estate.

Everyone wondered whose estate it was and whether anyone was killed? The SC sergeant now instructing the men to be on full alert and doubling the perimeter sentry duties to two men now. All of us were told to play near the house. My father reminding me to call out to the sentry when going to the latrine. An only son does have health benefits.


Malayan security forces on patrol.

It was a week later, rain had been falling incessantly since afternoon and by nightfall it came down in torrents. Frogs were croaking everywhere, a heavy mist had come up and visibility outside was down to less than 20 feet. The rain coming down mercilessly beating a tattoo on the roof. We had all gone to sleep around 10 pm under our individual mosquito nets. A mosquito repellant lighted coil placed near the window.

It was about 1am, when without warning loud gunfire somewhere near the house startled all of us from our sleep. There were loud shouts, yelling from the SC's, "COMMUNIST DATANG,..COMMUNIST DATANG, COMMUNIST ATTACK"! The dogs barking like crazy now. More gunshots going off as my grandfather and all the men grabbed their guns rushing to the windows, we kids and the women were asked to crawl towards the sandbagged room and lie down.


The jungle at night

I heard an uncle saying our estate was being attacked. We were by now trembling with fear from the loud explosions of several machine guns going off next to the house. It sounded like coming from near the latrine. Upstairs nobody knew whether the communists had cut the fence, and now about to enter the house as all the yelling and gun shots sounded just next to the house.

There were loud shouts of, "SANA, SANA! TEPI PAGAR!!...TEMBAK!...TEMBAK"! (There! There! Next to the fence. Shoot! Shoot!) Then more gunshots, the deafening staccato of the several Bren guns going off drowned out everything else. Several more SC's from nearby bunkers rushed over as reinforcements, all taking cover behind sandbags or lying on the ground.


Jungle trail at night

The spotlights could hardly penetrate thru the heavy mist as more shots were fired. We could hear in spite of the rain the tin cans strung along the fence was clanging away, obviously the communist now trying to scale the fence. But my grandfather and my uncles held back their fire for fear of shooting at the SC's below. More loud yelling from the SC's downstairs, "SANA..SANA! TEMBAK,..ADA ORANG SANA! TEPI PAGAR! CHEPAT TEMBAK..."! (There...shoot...shoot! Somebody at the fence"!) The loud gunfire continued for several more minutes when we heard loud shouts of, "BERHENTI TEMBAK, BERHENTI TEMBAK!....HOLD YOUR FIRE!....HOLD YOUR FIRE". The silence now deafening. The smell of cordite, gunpowder strong in the air.


SC or Special constable on guard duty.

My grandfather and the men all rushed downstairs, guns cocked at the ready to investigate. There were SC's everywhere now, some pointing to where they were shooting at, their Sten guns ready to shoot. Everyone in the house thought the communists had cut thru the barb wire and we were all going to be killed and the house burned down.

A few of us crawled to the windows and peeped thru the window slots. We could see the SC's lying prone on the wet grass, guns aimed at the fence all soaking wet from the rain now coming down in torrents. The heavy mist engulfing them like ghostly figures. We could all now hear loud squealings, grunts and screams, the tin cans rattling along the fence. Everyone thought some communists had been shot. We saw the sergeant slowly crawling towards the fence, then still aiming his Sten gun at the fence yelled out, 'BUKAN COMMUNISTS, BUKAN COMMUNISTS!...BABI HUTAN, BABI HUTAN'. (Not communists, wild pigs"!)


Wild pigs.

Later we learned some wild pigs had tried to get thru the fencing to get at the tapioca, sweet potato and sugar cane plants nearby. Their favourite food. Three of them, all about 40 kilos somehow got tangled up in the perimeter barb wire and struggling to get loose causing the tin cans to rattle. And in the darkness, heavy rain, with the mist obscuring the spotlight's beam, the wild pigs dark brown or black colour was easily mistaken for terrorists.


Jungle at night.

Altogether seven were shot, four fatally, three lying wounded and squealing loudly. The sergeant then shot them dead. There were a lot of red faces among them that night and muted laughter. Apparently when the sentry on duty hearing the tins clanging had shouted his, "BERHENTI, SIAPA JALAN SANA, HALT! WHO GOES THERE"? And after two warnings not getting a reply, he seeing dark shadows trying to break thru the fencing immediately opened fire followed by other SC's in their bunkers. Everyone was still on edge after the previous week's attack on the neighbouring estate. You can guess what the menu was for the next few days among the Chinese and Indian tapper families, including ours.


Tapioca plants.

My grandmother felt sad when her vegetable garden was dug up and all replanted nearer to her flower garden beside the house. The above two incidents as well my latrine adventure was the highlight of my stay there.


Tunku Abdul Rahman, PM of Malaya 31 August, 1957. Declaring Malaya's Independence.

It was on 31st July 1960 when the emergency was finally declared over. The country was declared 'white'. Malaya had achieved its Independence in 1957.

'A good article, please put it in your library and show it to our children and grand children'


Note:Some time ago I 'captured' this article from a (now closed) website. I held off publication for some time while trying to find and request permission from the original author, but my search was unsuccessful. In creating this web page every effort has been made to retain the authenticity of the original work.
Dave Barton - NMBVAA Webmaster - November 2012


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