to perpetuate the memory and history of our dead

20.6 Gallery

Here is a Gallery of romusha-related photos; most taken by Australian Teams at the time of liberation. But some are from IJA archives


Ipoh War Memorial was built in 1927 to commemorate the soldiers from Perak State who had died in World War I. The original plaque on the War Memorial listed 91 names of British citizens living in Perak State who died in war. This memorial was updated in 2008 with additional references[1] to ‘The Malayan Emergency of 1948 – 1960’, the ‘Indonesian Confrontation of 1962 -1965’, and the ‘The Re-Insurgency Period of 1972 – 1990’.

During a more recent renovation and moving the memorial to a new site, an additional plaque was added to commemorate the Malayans Tamils and the Allied POWs who died in Thailand during WW II.

[1] Something about the mention of these other three conflicts, which involved Malaysian people being killed, seems to have offended local sensibilities and the new plaque was vandalized very shortly after being installed. This may be connected to the ‘Malayan Emergency’ having started in Perak State, near Ipoh, with the killing of three European plantation owners and the subsequent reprisals. It is easy to understand how a Malaysian living in Perak might be offended by a plaque commemorating soldiers from a foreign country involved in armed conflict with other Malaysians from Perak half a century ago.

The importance of original documents is very well shown in that this photo is published on the internet in various places as Thai TBR workers at NongPlaDuk. Yet, when one looks at the Japanese language inscribed on it it says Burmese TBR workers with no reference to the exact place. There would have been no Burmese romusha anywhere near NongPlaDuk.