Balikpapan Borneo 1945

Mr Paul Yang 提供楊文忠醫師的 1/10/1945 家書中,提到神靖丸的最終目的地,是婆羅洲東部的油田區 Balikpapan [巴厘巴板].

美國海軍的Operation Gratitude於1945年1月12日重創航行或停泊中的日本軍艦及各種運輸船艦,日海軍顯然無力再継續運送神靖丸生還者到 Balikpapan 報到任命,所以改為零星分送,到越南,新加坡,馬來,及印尼各戰地服役,到戰後次年從印尼戰俘營釋出返臺,或滯留原地參加當地革命反抗殖民統治,因而更遲的回到臺灣故鄉.

Wikipedia 竟有詳細 1942-1945年的戰史記載,現節錄部份如次:

1. "...On 24 January 1942, a Japanese invasion convoy arrived at Balikpapan and was attacked by four United States Navy destroyers which sank three Japanese transports. The Japanese landed and after a sharp but short fight the Japanese army defeated the Dutch garrison. The defenders had partially destroyed the oil refinery and other facilities. After this the Japanese massacred many of the Europeans they had captured. Several campaigns followed until the 1945 Battle of Balikpapan, which concluded the Allied Forces' Borneo campaign, after which they took control of Borneo island."

2. "The Battle of Balikpapan [見上圗: 澳軍進攻路線] was the concluding stage of the Borneo campaign (1945). The landings took place on 1 July 1945. The Australian 7th Division, composed of the 18th, 21st and 25th Infantry Brigades, with support troops, made an amphibious landing, codenamed Operation Oboe Two a few miles north of Balikpapan, on the island of Borneo. The landing had been preceded by heavy bombing and shelling by Australian and US air and naval forces. The Japanese were outnumbered and out gunned, but like the other battles of the Pacific War, many of them fought to the death.

"Major operations had ceased by July 21. The 7th Division's casualties were significantly lighter than they had suffered in previous campaigns. The battle was one of the last to occur in World War II, beginning a few weeks before the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki effectively ended the war. Japan surrendered while the Australians were combing the jungle for stragglers."

22 Base Force 及
454 Independent Infantry Battalion [commander: Major Misuaki Yamada], 37th Army

如果當年神靖丸人員最終是在 Balikpapan 服役,很可能也逃不過玉碎的命運(?) - 當然這也只是憑空測臆而已.



這張珍貴照片是 Mr Paul Yang (楊文忠醫師的孫子) 慷慨提供, 1944年8月8日拍攝的第八次南方派遣醫畢業照(背景地點不詳). 據吳平城的"軍醫日記"記載,神靖丸人員是1944年9月28日到高雄集合.所以這很可能是戰爭結束前最後一個訓練班.