Military Review

Malay operation. Britain's crushing defeat in Southeast Asia

Starting the fighting in Southeast Asia, Japan considered British Malaya as one of the first strategic objectives. Since 1826, the British Malaya and the fortress city of Singapore have made up a single British colony of the Straits Settlements.

The favorable geographical position of the Malay peninsula allowed the capture of the seaport of Singapore and the penetration of Indonesia (then the Netherlands East Indies). In addition, Malacca was rich in natural resources, which also attracted the Japanese leadership. However, the seizure of Malacca would not have been possible without a direct clash with the armed forces of Great Britain and Australia deployed on the peninsula and at the naval base in Singapore. However, in the fall of 1941, the Japanese command began to develop the Malay operation. To carry it out, it was necessary to concentrate significant forces in the nearby areas of Indochina, as well as to achieve the consent of Thailand to use its airfields and ports in the interests of Japanese troops.

In turn, the Allied Command did not anticipate that Japan would be able to attack several targets in the Asia-Pacific region at once. The British leadership mistakenly assessed the potential of the Japanese imperial army and believed that the Japanese would not be able to hit in several places. Such self-confidence cost the Allies dearly. On the night of December 8 1941, Japan attacked the territory of Thailand. Several units of the Thai army put up fierce resistance to Japanese troops, but at noon, Prime Minister of Thailand Major General Pibunsongram ordered a cease-fire at noon. A truce was concluded with the Japanese, after which the Japanese army was able to use the territory of Thailand to attack Malaya and Burma.

- Indian soldiers in Malaya, 1941.

By the time of the events described, British troops in Malacca were very few. Back in 1920's The Malay Command of the British Commonwealth was formed. He was tasked with defending the peninsula of Malacca and Singapore. Since the conflict with France or the Netherlands was virtually eliminated, and Thailand would hardly have attacked British possessions, the number of troops subordinate to the Malay Command was not significant. British units and formations were deployed in Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Serembane and Taiping. With the beginning of the Second World War, the British command decided to increase the number of troops of the Malay Command at the expense of the British Indian Army. November 18 The Malay Command 1940 was reassigned to the British Far Eastern Command.

On the Malacca Peninsula, in Singapore and in Sarawak (the northern part of the island of Kalimantan), British and Australian troops were stationed with a total strength of 88 thousand people, including 73 thousand British and 15 thousand Australian troops. Most of the British troops were soldiers of the colonial forces - 37 thousand Indians and 17 thousand Malays. The British in the troops of the Malay command, there were only 19 thousand people. The 3rd Indian Corps as part of the 9th Indian Infantry Division (8th Indian Infantry Brigade and 22nd Indian Infantry Brigade), 11th Indian Infantry Division (6th Indian Infantry Brigade), and 15 Indian Infantry Brigade, 28th Gurkha Infantry Brigade, Communications Brigade, 8th Australian Division (22nd and 28th Brigades). Aviation The Malay command had 158 aircraft.

Malay operation. Britain's crushing defeat in Southeast Asia All these forces were commanded by Lieutenant General Arthur Evans Percival (1887-1966), an experienced officer who passed all military service levels. In the 27 years, at the very beginning of the First World War, Percival, who had previously served as an ordinary civilian clerk, enlisted as a volunteer in the army, underwent accelerated courses and received the rank of second lieutenant. He participated in hostilities on the territory of France, was wounded, awarded the Military Cross. Already in 1917, he became the battalion commander with assignment of the temporary rank of lieutenant colonel (temporary ranks imply that after leaving the post the officer returns his former rank, that is, the lieutenant appointed by the battalion commander and received the rank of lieutenant colonel, again becomes a lieutenant). After the war, he studied at the Staff College, participated in the intervention of British troops in Russia, where he served as deputy commander of the 45 regiment of the Royal Fuzileras. Then Percival served as company commander in Ireland, participated in operations against the IRA. After graduating from Headquarters College in 1924, he received the rank of major, then, in 1929, he was again given the rank of lieutenant colonel. In 1930-1931 Percival studied at the Naval College in Greenwich, then served in the General Staff. In 1936, he was finally given the rank of colonel and was appointed chief of staff of the Malay Command. After the outbreak of World War II, Percival served again in France - commanded by the 43 (Wessex) Division. In April, Percival, 1941, was given the rank of lieutenant general, after which he assumed the post of commander-in-chief of the Malay Command.

Japan planned to invade through Malaysia through Thailand, and then capture both the Malacca Peninsula and Singapore itself. To implement this plan, the forces of the 25th Army were concentrated as part of the 5th, 18th, 56th Infantry Divisions, the Imperial Guard Division, 3rd tank brigades. The number of Japanese troops destined for the invasion of Malaya was 60 thousand people. The Japanese Air Force deployed 459 aircraft of the 3rd Aviation Group in this region. Maritime support was provided by the Malay Operational Association, which included 9 cruisers, 16 destroyers, 16 submarines, 158 naval aircraft. The command of the ground forces was carried out by the commander of the 25th army, General Tomoyuki Yamashita (1885-1946, pictured), a professional military man who had previously served as chief of staff of the Kwantung Army in Manchuria.

Early in the morning of December 8, Japanese troops began their landing operations on the Malacca Peninsula. This happened at the same time as the attack of Japan on Pearl Harbor. Japanese aviation from Indochina attacked British airfields in Malaika and Singapore.

The main forces of the Japanese troops invaded Malaya from the territory of the Thai border province of Pattani. Thus, the advantage of the first strike turned out to be among the Japanese, since the British command did not dare to launch a preemptive strike, violating the neutrality of Thailand. Already in the first two days of the Malaysian operation, Japanese aircraft destroyed one-third of British aircraft. In the evening of December 9, the naval unit of the United Kingdom naval force left Singapore, which included the battleship Prince of Wales and the battle cruiser Ripsals. Japan sent the 2 battleship, 3 cruisers and destroyers against him. The aircraft of Japanese aviation bombed British ships, sinking the battleship Prince of Wales and the cruiser Ripals. 840 people died. Japanese aviation losses accounted for all 5 aircraft. After this defeat, the troops of the British Commonwealth were left without substantial maritime support, since there were no more battleships in the waters west of Hawaii. At the same time, the ground units of the Japanese army quickly moved along the Malacca Peninsula, forcing the British commander, General Percival, to withdraw its troops to the southern province of Johor. Japanese troops were rapidly moving south, and the British were retreating. 8 January 1942 of the year in the battle of the River Slim, British troops lost about 4 thousands of people.

This serious defeat raised the question of whether the Malaysian command would be able to keep the defense until reinforcements arrived from the ports of the Middle East. The Far Eastern Command was abolished, and in its place was created the ABDA — the Command of the American, British, Dutch and Australian armed forces with headquarters in Java. His commander in chief was General Archibald Wavell (1883-1950, pictured), who previously commanded the British forces in the Middle East and by the beginning of 1941, practically freed North-East Africa from Italian forces. General Wavell decided to strengthen the defense of Johor. 11 January, the British left Kuala Lumpur. Meanwhile, the Japanese broke through to the roads of Johor and transferred two new divisions there, which made it possible to overcome the resistance of the Australian troops. January 21 British Commonwealth forces 1942 were forced to leave Eudau. The British and Australians continued to retreat south. 31 January Japanese troops occupied Johor Bahru - the southernmost city of British Malaya. After this, the British Commonwealth troops were forced to evacuate to Singapore.

As a result of the Malaysian operation, which lasted just over a month and a half, British troops suffered a crushing situation and completely left the territory of the Malacca Peninsula. 5,5 thousands of British and Australian soldiers died, 5 thousands more were injured, 40 thousands were captured. The losses of the Japanese side were much smaller - 1,8 thousand killed and 3,4 thousand wounded soldiers and officers. Under the control of Japan was extensive and rich British Malaya. But the main strategic victory of Japan in this region was ahead - the Japanese command could not feel calm until Singapore was captured - the most important naval base of the British Commonwealth forces.

After the withdrawal of British troops to Singapore, in order to protect the base from the land invasion from the territory of Malacca, British engineering units blew up the dam that connected the island with the peninsula. Singapore was under siege. In the city, by this time, there were 85 thousands of British soldiers, of whom 70 thousands served in combat units and 15 thousands in auxiliary units. These forces, by the way, were superior to the Japanese troops of General Yamashita, who were going to strike at Singapore. But General Percival, who commanded the defense of Singapore, made another mistake - he dispersed British forces along the coast, where they became an easy target for the Japanese troops. 8 February 1942, the Japanese artillery began a massive shelling of British positions in Singapore.

On the night of February 8 and 9, units of the 18 and 5 Japanese divisions with the 21 heavy artillery division and the 1 tank regiment began to force the strait that separated Singapore from Malacca. Since the British saved electricity and turned on searchlights rarely, they did not have time to react to the crossing of the strait by the Japanese. As a result, instead of artillery fire, the Japanese were met only by fire from rifle weapons, which led the Australian infantry. On the night of February 11, the Japanese, defeating the 27 Infantry Brigade of the Australian Army, covering the destroyed dam, promptly restored its exploded areas and began to advance to the island. 12 February was captured by Ni Sung, where there was a water reservoir supplying all of Singapore. ABDA commander-in-chief, General Wavell, told Winston Churchill that he had received a message from General Percival that the Malay Command troops were no longer capable of serious enemy counterattacks.

On February 14, Japanese artillery began shelling Singapore. On February 15, the Japanese ground forces launched an offensive on the city, as a result of which the Japanese managed to take several strategically important positions. At the same time, General Percival informed General Wavell that there was one day of water left in the city, the streets were littered with corpses, and there was no way to continue the resistance. The ABDA Commander-in-Chief answered: “Whatever happens - I thank you and your troops for the brave actions of the last days.” It is noteworthy that the Japanese generals were approximately in the same demoralized state at that time. The ammunition and fuel of the advancing 25th army was almost over, so the only thing she could do if Singapore's defense lasted at least a couple of days longer was to abandon the capture of the city and move back to Malacca. But luck smiled at the Japanese. Just as the Japanese headquarters was discussing the future prospects of the operation, it was reported from the front line that a car with a white flag had arrived at Japanese positions. At 17.00 pm on February 15, 1942, General Arthur Percival personally arrived at the Japanese headquarters, carrying a white flag. Negotiations began on the surrender of the forces of the British Commonwealth, which defended the “Lion City” (namely, the name of Singapore is translated). As a result of surrender, Singapore was in the hands of Japanese troops. More than 80 thousand British and Australian troops were captured. The British army did not know of such surrenders during the Second World War. Never inflicted such crushing defeats on the European armies and fleets and Japan.

The fall of Singapore and the capture of British Malaya were a great victory for Japan in the Asia-Pacific region. As a result of these events, control of the most important British base in Southeast Asia turned out to be in the hands of the Japanese, which opened the way for Burma and the Netherlands East Indies. The victory over British troops in Malaya and Singapore had a great influence on the attitudes of the peoples of Southeast Asia, who were able to convince themselves that the invincibility of British weapons turned out to be a myth - the British Empire, which seemed invincible, suffered a serious defeat from the Asian state and lost its most important possessions. in the region. In many ways, it was this effect of the Japanese victory over British troops that subsequently led to the intensification of national liberation movements throughout the Asia-Pacific region. Singapore and Malaya were incorporated into the Japanese Empire. It was possible to free Singapore from the Japanese only after the final defeat of Japan in World War II.

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  1. Knizhnik
    Knizhnik 9 December 2016 08: 04
    Good article. But the author goes overboard a little with epithets like "crushing")))
    1. Reptiloid
      Reptiloid 9 December 2016 12: 27
      There is also the word grandiose, most serious, most important or most important ......
      I think that with these words the author scoffs at both sides. Since we all know what happened afterwards.
      I liked the article very much.
      1. Mikado
        Mikado 9 December 2016 13: 17
        Dmitry, there is a wonderful book by Igor Mozheiko "West Wind - Clear Weather". It does not investigate in detail the course of certain battles, but the events are described in general terms, including political ones.
        The British were not ready for war - there was no combat experience, units were poorly trained, and mainly consisted of Indians. The Australian division was not introduced in the early days, although it could be considered the most combat-ready unit. The tactics of the Japanese often boiled down to offsets and off-road coverage, which they also did not find what to oppose.
        It is also worth mentioning the attitude of the Japanese towards prisoners - for example, they simply did not bother with the wounded, stabbing with bayonets.
        For me personally, the role of Wavell is tragic - he bore on himself all the shame of the first stage of the war, a kind of English "Timoshenko". I don't know if he could have done anything. No one had any experience - neither the soldiers, nor the generals of peace. It took years for this experience to appear, but the victories are already associated with the names of Mountbatten and Slim. soldier
    2. avt
      avt 9 December 2016 13: 26
      Quote: Knizhnik
      But the author goes overboard with epithets like "crushing"

      Local scale - not at all. And here is an interesting fact - there the cable lay underwater connection, and so lay untouched .... until the return of Singapore. And when the shaved decided to take it back - the submarine was sent and cut.
      1. Reptiloid
        Reptiloid 9 December 2016 20: 57
        Good evening, Nikolai. It is the book that you mention that I didn’t read, although I always read the author with pleasure. Of course, the end of British colonial rule evokes a feeling of deep satisfaction. The Indians in the troops have suffered for the interests of others. And how many people have suffered from the British in different places of the earth. .Also, a feeling of deep satisfaction is caused by the fact that the Japanese have again become limited in territory.
        The attitude of the Japanese towards prisoners of different nationalities is known, recently he wrote about a Soviet girl tortured by them in another comment. Respectfully.
  2. unknown
    unknown 9 December 2016 09: 03
    The situation is reminiscent of 1941. Both Germany and Japan succeeded in their "blitzkriegs".
    And then, a war of attrition, the advantage of which was on the side of the Allies.
    At the same time, the United States by the hands of the Japanese destroyed the British colonial empire.
    1. mroy
      mroy 9 December 2016 11: 46
      Well, just at the Germans the blitzkrieg plan began to burst at the seams in the very first days, and by the end of autumn the blitzkrieg died completely
      1. Alexey RA
        Alexey RA 9 December 2016 13: 14
        Quote: mroy
        Well, just at the Germans the blitzkrieg plan began to burst at the seams in the very first days, and by the end of autumn the blitzkrieg died completely

        So the Japanese blitzkrieg plan also began to crack immediately - as soon as it turned out that cowardly and pampered yankees they don’t intend to capitulate after the first defeats. And in general, judging by Wake, the Yankees are not very cowardly. smile
  3. Ruby
    Ruby 9 December 2016 09: 16
    Never underestimate the enemy. Before the war, the British regarded the Japanese as a kind of slightly civilized apes. Especially in the colonial troops, such sentiments prevailed. So we paid. At the same time, other "supermen" were raking off the "inferior" ones on the Eastern Front.
  4. hohol95
    hohol95 9 December 2016 09: 20
    One of the pages of the book of life of Arthur Ernest Percival -
    “Percival’s studies were interrupted in 1919 when he volunteered to serve in the Arkhangelsk Command of the British Military Mission during the foreign intervention during the Russian Civil War. earned the bar for his Order of Distinguished Service when, during an operation in the Northern Dvina region, he captured about 45 Red Army soldiers. "
  5. hohol95
    hohol95 9 December 2016 09: 24
    And here is another page of his life -
    “Percival spent some time as a prisoner in Singapore's Changi prison, and in August 1942, along with other British prisoners of the rank of colonel and above, Percival was taken to Formosa, and then placed in a camp in Manchuria. The camp turned out to be the American General Jonathan Wainwright, who capitulated in the Philippines.
    In August 1945, Percival, along with other prisoners, was liberated by the advancing Soviet troops. "
  6. bionik
    bionik 9 December 2016 09: 31
    The team leaves the sinking British battleship “Prince of Wales” (HMS Prince of Wales) in the Kuantan area in the South China Sea. In the photo on the right - the British destroyer Express (HMS Express), suitable for removing the crew from a heavily damaged battleship. The photo was taken by Express commander Lieutenant Commander Francis Jack Cartwright.
    On December 8, 1941, the British Navy’s Compound Z, commanded by Admiral Thomas Phillips as part of the Prince of Wales battleship, the Ripals battlecruiser, and four destroyers, left Singapore to intercept the Japanese military convoy moving toward Cat Bar. On the morning of December 10, the compound was attacked by Japanese G3M bombers and torpedo bombers G3M and G4M. The second attack was fatal for the “Prince of Wales” - he received a torpedo hitting a port side in the area of ​​tower Y with the G3M Genzan air corps. This caused the loss of one of the propellers and the failure of the electrics of most of the ship; the latter made it impossible to use anti-aircraft artillery, with the exception of seven 20-mm guns "Oerlikon" and one 40-mm anti-aircraft guns "Pom-Pom."
    In total, the battleship was attacked six times by twenty G3M bombers, dropping 32-kg bombs (one hit) and fifteen torpedo bombers G500M and G3M (4 hits). The Prince of Wales killed 10 sailors, including Admiral Philips. The loss of Japanese aircraft during the attack on the Prince of Wales and Ripals amounted to one G513M and two G3M.
  7. bionik
    bionik 9 December 2016 09: 36
    The head of the Malay command of the forces of the British Commonwealth, British Lieutenant General Arthur Percival and his staff officers are sent, along with representatives of the Japanese army, to negotiate the surrender of the garrison in Singapore. Arthur Percival (Arthur Ernest Percival, 1887-1966, far right) was released from Japanese captivity in August 1945 and took part in the ceremony of signing the surrender act of Japan on September 2.09.1945, XNUMX.
    1. hohol95
      hohol95 9 December 2016 10: 59
      In August 1945, Percival, along with other prisoners, was liberated by the advancing Soviet troops.
  8. libivs
    libivs 9 December 2016 10: 20
    The article is too soft and politically correct. The author clearly spares the British. Already the first skirmishes with the Japanese knocked down the arrogant arrogance of the English gentlemen, and the whole history of the "defense" of Malaya is a description of a massive drape of regular English units without any hope of turning Singapore into Port Arthur. We often kick our generals for being relaxed and sluggish in RYA, but Percival and Wavell have clearly surpassed Alekseev and Kuropatkin combined. Yamashita, realizing that this was his chance, constantly attacked, preventing the British from gaining a foothold in their positions and his units constantly seeped from the flanks. By the way, the main weapon of the Japanese victory in Malaya is the bicycle!
  9. hohol95
    hohol95 9 December 2016 10: 58
    The British thought that the Japanese troops were similar to the Italian! And they were waiting for the deepest disappointment!
  10. Potter
    Potter 9 December 2016 11: 00
    The end of 1941 was not fun for the Saxo-Saxons at all.
    At the Mediterranean Theater, the sinking of the battleship Barem and the aircraft carrier Ark Royal. And then, at Alexandri, the demolition by the Italian fighting swimmers of the battleships Veliant and Queen Elizabeth. Which, although they were not sunk, failed the first for six months, the second for one and a half years. Malta was hanging by a thread, without escort of large ships, convoys of transports did not reach her. Well, Pearl Harbor in those same days.
    1. voyaka uh
      voyaka uh 9 December 2016 20: 22
      For Russians, too. Like the 42nd year. Only at 43 did a turning point begin, both in Russia and among the Americans and the British. A turning point in World War II, in which the Russians and Anglo-Saxons were allies.
      1. Boris Zhitkovsky
        Boris Zhitkovsky 9 December 2016 20: 34
        Be that as it may, the Russian people won. The price of victory was really huge. But, thanks to the victory of the Russian people in the Second World War, you have a small country. Otherwise, the Germans would pour you on the field in the form of fertilizer. Or still Tashkent or Bukhara was hiding.
        1. OLD FART
          OLD FART 9 December 2016 20: 46
          Quote: Boris Zhitkovsky
          Be that as it may, the Russian people won. The price of victory was really huge. But, thanks to the victory of the Russian people in the Second World War, you have a small country. Otherwise, the Germans would pour you on the field in the form of fertilizer. Or still Tashkent or Bukhara was hiding.

          They have forgotten everything .... Yes, and now we are fighting for them in Syria (so that the devils do not shoot them with pipes) .. But they only shoot us in the back and demand that we do not soak the devils so quickly!))) I am sure if we will clean up Syria , then they will brag with the United States like "If it were not for their support, Russia would have fought there for a long time ..."
          It's a shame the hell for our guys ... And what to do?
        2. voyaka uh
          voyaka uh 9 December 2016 23: 23
          , "thanks to the victory of the Russian people in the Second World War, you have a small country" /////

          So my posts about the same. fellow About the victory in the 2nd World War of the forces of the anti-Hitler coalition: USSR, USA, England, Australia, Canada over the Axis forces: Germany, Italy, Japan. About this and the article - about one of the episodes of this difficult war. In which, after the initial tragic setbacks (22.06/XNUMX, Pearl Harbor, Singapore, etc.), remarkable victories were won. With the decisive contribution of the Soviet army and the USSR drinks .
  11. Rotmistr
    Rotmistr 9 December 2016 11: 57
    Yes, Japanese Blitzkrieg in action. Thank!
  12. Alexey RA
    Alexey RA 9 December 2016 13: 09
    At uv. Eugene Pinak was a good analysis real the state of the British forces in Malaya - written for one of the alternatives:
    But since this is Panzerwelt, I will take a little stretch and ensure that the troops in Malaya are the same as in real life. These will be 6 Indian and 2 Australian infantry. brigades + 3 divisions (9 and 11 Indian, 8 Australian divisions) and 1 corps (3 Indian) sets of parts (incomplete). In addition to them, there was still the equivalent of 4 brigades in the form of garrisons of Singapore, Penang and airfields, but these troops (except 3 English and 1 Indian battalion in Singapore and 1 Indian battalion in Penang) were militias that did not have serious combat value.
    But not that the regular parts were anything extraordinary.
    Firstly, they lacked weapons (for example, only 1 Indian infantry battalion of 20 was staffed by state), and what was, was by no means the first grade (for example, almost all anti-tank missiles in Malaya were captured Italian 47 mm guns of delirium). In addition, the acquisition of new weapons also meant the reorganization of the unit (the states of the units with the "old" and "new" weapons were noticeably different) with the corresponding tactical retraining. How these perturbations affect the combat effectiveness of the unit is not necessary to say.
    Secondly, the quality of troops also left much to be desired. The unusually rapid growth of the British and Indian armies (in the beginning of 1939 the first was 7, and in the second 4 divisions - by the end of 1941 there were 36 and 15, respectively) led to a shortage of qualified command personnel. This especially affected the Indian parts. The fact is that they, like all units with a low level of education and recruitment initiatives, very much depended on the quality of the officers. With the commander who thoroughly knew their language, customs and needs, these soldiers worked miracles - the trouble was that the best officers were sent to Africa and the Middle East. However, the officers of the "peacetime" level of training was also insufficient due to the fact that combat training was not uniform and to a large extent theoretical. And the soldiers until the widespread introduction at the end of 1942 a single so-called. “Combat training” did not have a standard training system at all - only general directives that the commander of each regiment depot could carry out at his discretion.
    And thirdly, the British troops simply did not know how to fight in the jungle. This seems surprising, but, for example, the officer’s directory of the mid-20s does not contain the word “jungle” at all, although everything is described, from organizing a camp in the mountains to the weight of an 18-pound gun. In addition, of the 12 conditional brigades, only 2 were in Malaya for more than a year, of which only 1 (12th Indian) was a field unit. The rest at the beginning of the war were in Malaya for several months and prepared for action in the jungle according to their own understanding and, naturally, in the "appendage" to carry out other tasks (for example, the 11th Indian Division was simultaneously preparing for the offensive according to the Matador plan and preparation for the defense of northern Malaya).
    But if these troops even went through acclimatization to local conditions, then reinforcements (17 Indian and 18 English divisions) were even deprived of this luxury. Moreover, the 17th Indian division consisted of recently formed battalions, half and more of which consisted of recruits that had only undergone basic individual training, i.e. was actually unworkable. And the Australian replenishment, aimed at replenishing the loss in the combat units, _in general_ did not undergo combat training.
    The Air Force suffered from similar problems. Firstly, they simply didn’t have enough aircraft (there were only 158 aircraft available instead of 336, which were considered the minimum necessary), and those that were not the first grade — Buffalo fighters, for example, got into Malaya only after how it was decided that they were unsuitable for fighting in Europe, and the Wilbists were everywhere replaced by Beauforts a year and a half ago — everywhere except Malaya, the same with Blenheim 1 — in other places they’ve been half a year already were withdrawn from the first line. Pilots were not much better - New Zealanders, for example, arrived in combat units directly from flight schools and had to "finish up" them on the spot. Australians, according to one pilot: "flew reluctantly and basically studied all kinds of combinations of gin and tonic." But even such pilots were not enough. By the way, in real life the Dutch helped the British (about 40 aircraft) - here you can forget about them.
    The Royal Navy seemed to be able to "show the Japs." But here the question arises - why should the British keep a fleet in Singapore at Panzerwelt? In real life, the fleet was intended for joint operations as part of the ABGA, which, incidentally, were to provide the core of light forces. There is neither ABGA, nor the need to intercept the convoys to ensure the Matador plan (after all, the British are defending if you have not forgotten).
    But even the “hodgepodge” that had gathered in real life in the Compound Z of the Eastern Fleet (the “Prince of Wales”, which had not completed repairs before the Japanese attack, the Ripals and 6 old destroyers), could hardly seriously hinder plans of the Japanese.
    1. hohol95
      hohol95 9 December 2016 14: 00
      We will punish our own for defeats in the Crimea, regardless of the number and condition of troops and equipment! And the valiant sons of Misty Albion - UNDERSTAND AND SIMPLY!
      1. Cartalon
        Cartalon 9 December 2016 21: 30
        And what is the connection between the Crimea and Singapore? In general, nothing needs to be disassembled in detail? It is enough to say that we are good and brave, and they are evil and cowardly.
  13. Type 63
    Type 63 9 December 2016 18: 05
    The Japanese, to put it mildly, were not angels, but the white gentlemen-shaved faces cleaned
  14. tiaman.76
    tiaman.76 12 December 2016 22: 22
    in general, as in Europe, the Angles lost their positions so almost on the entire Asian front .. at the expense of the Indians and Australians barely got out