Reunion letter from George Bainborough, May 1963

Reunion letter from George Bainborough, May 1963

The Romaji at the bottom right translates to ‘lots of toilets’, which may have had a less polite vernacular meaning to those incarcerated at Osaka. ‘More Louder’ refers to the demands for louder responses at roll call by the ‘mad doctor’ Surgeon Lieutenant Kunio Miyatake. In the oral history account of his capture and imprisonment, George Bainborough said:
Then we had Miyatake, who was a mad doctor. We called him mad because he would be in charge of the roll-call and after everybody had numbered he would shout, “Again. More louder!” and then they’d do it again, and “Again. More louder.” and then he’d do it again. And we’d do this as much as a dozen times and in the end people were shouting so loud that they couldn’t speak. If they didn’t shout then he would beat everybody on the top of the head with the scabbard of his sword.” (Imperial War Museum Sound Archive. Bainborough, George Harry (Oral history). 5210.)
Surgeon Lieutenant Kunio Miyatake was tried for war crimes and on 31 January 1947 and was sentenced to 20 years’ hard labour.
The Japanese script translates to ‘the great [word unknown]’.

(Photo Ian Topliff)

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