IBT Roundup Headline

 India-Burma Theater Roundup
Vol. IV,   No. 16          Delhi,  Thursday,  December 27, 1945.          Reg. No. L5015

HERE COMES 1946 Here's a Happy New Year in Hollywood's best tradition.
That's Mona Freeman of Paramount tooting a welcome.

 F.L.C. Sale Of Equipment
 Will  Mean  Earlier  Date
 For End Of Mission Here

Roundup Staff Article    

    Substantially all U.S. Army surplus property in India has been sold in bulk to the Government of India, according to a special official announcement yesterday which brought predictions that the action will assist in accelerating the final closing out of the India-Burma Theater.
  The sale, believed to be one of the largest in history, was announced jointly by representatives of the U.S. and Indian Governments at a press conference in New Delhi.
  Representatives of the Foreign Liquidation Commission said that under terms of the agreement the Government of India is taking over "possibly in excess of 600,000 long tons of equipment, with a book value probably in excess of $500,000,000."
  At Theater Headquarters spokesman hailed the sale and predicted it may result in the Theater closing by June, or possibly May. They emphasized, however, that "it is too early to give definite assurance now" as to when the closing date will be inasmuch as the U.S. Army still has a "very substantial" amount of equipment which it must send back to the States. In addition, they said, the Government of India must take custody of the surplus property remaining.

  Maj. Gen. Thomas A. Terry, Theater commander, told civilian and Army newspapermen that the surplus property will be turned over to representatives of the Government of India as quickly as they can visit the various properties and storage depots, make a survey of equipment and other property, give a receipt to the U.S. Government and move in personnel to take over custody.
  "There is no positive way of knowing just how long this will take," he said, "but I can tell you our U.S. Army personnel on duty at these depots and other installations will be withdrawn just as quickly as the Indian Government takes them over."
  Gen. Terry was asked if this U.S. Army personnel, thus relieved, could plan to return to the United States immediately if they are high-point men. He replied that men will be returned to the U.S. as rapidly as they become surplus to the Theater needs, and shipping space becomes available.
  The equipment which must be shipped home, he said, is known as "excess property" and should not be confused with the "surplus property" sold to the Government of India.
  "As in other Theaters," he said, "we have been given the task of getting this critically needed equipment home. We are well into this assignment and making excellent progress."

500,000 ITEMS
  In the meantime, members of the Foreign Liquidation Commission said the surplus property represents about 500,000 items, varying from armor plate to shoe strings, and including a great deal of engineering equipment.
  The F.L.C. said that the U.S. Government has agreed to provide the Indian Government with price inventories and a report of the condition of property both personal and real, and which will include scrap, salvage and waste material.
  The F.L.C. said the sales price and the method of payment by the Government of India will be worked out during conferences between representatives of both governments, which will be held in Washington, D.C., during January and February "on the subject of Lend-Lease and Reciprocal Aid obligations and other matters arising out of the war."
  The commissioners said there are some items which are not included in the sale. Generally, they explained, these include items for which negotiations had already started. Originally, before the bulk sale to the Indian Government, sales were carried out at a series of agencies throughout India under a priorities' system.
  First priority for all items went to U.S. Government agencies and NURRA. Priority Two was for religious, charitable, educational and medical institutions; Priority Three, agents or representatives and distributors of branded goods of American manufacture; Priority Four, the Government of India, and Priority Five, the general public.
  Despite the bulk sale, members of the commission said that surplus U.S. Army equipment will still be sold through the Army Exchange Service. This will include any items now in possession of the Exchange Service, or on order, it was declared.
  The commissioners emphasized that the sale involved only that surplus which is in India. A large amount of U.S. Army surplus property in Burma has already been sold, they said, including pipeline equipment. In both Burma and

This week's edition of the Roundup, delayed one day because of the Christmas holiday was held up an additional day so that the story on the bulk sale of U.S. Army surplus property to the Government of India could be included.
India, they said, the equipment is listed as being in "new," "good," "fair," or "poor" condition in order that a fair price can be ascertained.
  The negotiations between U.S. and Indian Governments were conducted by Maj. Gen. Donald H. Connolly, Deputy Foreign Liquidation Commissioner, O.F.L.C., Washington, D.C.; Brig. Gen. William Hesketh, Deputy Field Commissioner, India-Burma Theater, F.L.C. and Col. Henry W. Whitney, executive officer of the F.L.C., India-Burma Theater, which represented the U.S. Government, while representing the Government of India were: Sir Archibald Rowlands, Finance Member, Sir Robert Targett, Director General, Supplies and Disposals, M. W. M. Yeats, Secretary, Supply Department, Mohamed Ali, Financial Advisor, War and Supply, and A. C. Chanda, Additional Financial Advisor, Supply and Finance Department.

Gen. Terry Cites Task Still Ahead

    NEW DELHI - Major General Thomas A. Terry, Theater Commander, today made the following statement to the troops of the India-Burma Theater on the agreement signed by the Government of India and the Deputy Foreign Liquidation Commissioner:
  It is probable that you have already heard the good news concerning the agreement signed by the Government of India and the U.S. Deputy Foreign Liquidation Commissioner on the disposal of surplus property. Naturally, you are interested in the effect it will have on you.
  First, it means that men that would have been engaged in guarding and disposing surplus property will be released when the Government of India takes over installations and property. The procedure for this release and transfer are now being carefully worked out, and once worked out, will take further time to execute, for there are tens of thousands of tons of supplies and equipment located in various places in India. The men thus released will then be able to help other men in tackling the great task of shipping and estimated 155,000 long tons of excess goods to the United States and other overseas commands.
  Second, the change in the Foreign Liquidation Commission's program will not materially affect the Theater's evacuation program for some time - certainly not during the next two months.
  Third, this new situation will, of course, have a long range result and will send us home earlier than previously expected, but the inactivation of the Theater is still months off and speculation on it is impossible at this time.
  We had foreseen this latest development and made preparations for it. A gigantic task still remains before us - a task which cannot be completed simply by signing names to paper and blotting the ink. But, you can be certain that no effort will be spared in completing the job yet to be done as rapidly as possible.
  Now that the end of our mission is more clearly in sight, let us meet our responsibility with renewed determination and in the same efficient manner which earned the India-Burma Theater its excellent record.

Two Transports Added To I-B Shipping Lists
  Roundup Staff Article

    Two additional ships, the Marine Robin and the Marine Fox, have been assigned to the India-Burma Theater's January shipping as troop carriers, according to Theater Headquarters, New Delhi, which estimated the Theater strength is now expected to be reduced to approximately 28,000 men by Jan. 31.
  A Theater spokesman announced at the same time that for the first time since V-J Day, the prospects are excellent for the month of January that all persons eligible for separation on the first of the month will ship out during the following 30 days.
  With the two additional ships, the Theater will have 10 vessels carrying troops to the States during the month. Seven will leave from Calcutta with an estimated 18,000 men and will go by way of the Pacific, disembarking the men in Seattle. Three will leave from Karachi, with two ships going to Seattle and one, the Santa Rosa, going to New York. The three will carry an estimated 8,700 men.
  The Calcutta ships and their tentative shipping dates are:
  The Marine Wolf, Jan. 4; Robin, 6th; Fox, 9th; Angel, 12th; Panther, 18th, and the Generals Hodges, 30th and McRae, 31st. The McRae was diverted from Karachi.
  The Karachi ships and their tentative shipping dates are:
  The Santa Rosa, Jan. 2; Gen. Greeley, 5th, and the Gen. Morton, last vessel scheduled to sail from Karachi as a troop carrier, Jan. 21.
  Transportation officers emphasized that all shipping dates are liable to change, principally because of bad weather delaying arrival of some of the vessels. They also announced that a last minute change in the shipping schedule is resulting in Gen. Callan and the Gen. Stewart sailing to Seattle instead of New York.
  Meanwhile, at the request of the Roundup, a year-end recapitulation of troop movements in and out of the Theater was prepared by transportation officers.
  It shows the India-Burma Theater strength last Aug. 31 just before V-J Day was 164,500. With 3,000 replacements received from the U.S. and 45,000 men coming in from the China Theater, the total for men in the Theater increased to 212,500 men.
  A total of 167,500 men will have shipped home from Aug. 31 to Jan. 31, and 8,000 men have been transferred from the India-Burma Theater to China, for a total of 184,500 departures from this Theater.
  The difference between the total of 212,500 men who have been in the Theater and the 184,500 who will have left by Jan. 31 Transportation officers said, provides the figure of 28,000 men who are expected to be in the Theater at the end of January.
  Transportation officers reported the India-Burma Theater strength from month to month from the end of the war as follows:
  August, 164,500; September, 160,000; October, 129,000; November, 92,000; December (estimated), 55,000, and January (estimated), 28,000. All figures are for the last day of each month.
  Men shipped to the U.S. during these months are listed as:
  September, 14,684; October, 50,986; November, 45,832; December (estimated), 37,229, and January (estimated), 27,769, for a five-month total of 176,500 men.
  Although a total of 184,500 personnel have departed from this Theater, at the same time 45,000 China Theater personnel and 3,000 replacements arrived in India-Burma. The India-Burma Theater's net decrease from Aug. 31 to Jan. 31 will therefore be an estimated 136,500.


    Violent storms, which had held both eastbound and westbound first class mail at Casablanca for five days, abated between the West African city and India on Christmas Day to permit two tons of Stateside mail to be transported to Karachi.
  Postal authorities announced 105 pouches of letter mail arrived at Karachi Tuesday, and departed there the same day as follows: 56 to the Calcutta area, 12 to Ledo, 11 to Chabua, 7 to Delhi, 5 to China, 4 to Tezgaon and 1 to Agra. Nine were for Karachi and Malir.
  Meanwhile the storm continued over the Atlantic, keeping westbound mail grounded at Casablanca and permitting no new air mail arrival for the sixth day, Wednesday.
  At the same time the I-B Postal Officer announced that approximately 40,000 parcels, last of the expected Christmas mail for this theater, arrived in Calcutta on Dec. 18 aboard the S.S. Titan.
  Citing the task facing postal unit officers and GI's at Calcutta, the Post Officer said that each of the 40,000 parcels arriving on the Titan was on its way from Calcutta to its destination on Dec. 22 and that all should have been delivered to addressees on or by Christmas Day.
  This was done, he said, despite the fact that all the 40,000 pieces had to be checked for correct addresses, re-sacked, and all damaged parcels had to be re-wrapped, labeled and sacked. The work at Calcutta was done by personnel of the 6th P.O.

F.D.R., "Mrs. GI Joe" Named 1945's Top Figures
In I-B Theater Poll Of Enlisted Men

By SGT. MICHAEL J. VALENTI   Roundup Staff Writer

    The late Franklin D. Roosevelt and "Mrs. GI Joe" have been acclaimed "The Man and Woman of the Year" in a poll conducted by Roundup in Theater Headquarters area, New Delhi.
  Tribute to the late President and to the GI's wife whose war years were filled with difficulties, as well as anxiety till her "Joe" returned home, came from cooks, clerks, radio men, MP's, drivers, guards and several specialist categories, forming a cross-section of GI's in the I-B Theater. Many had served in forward areas for over a year before being stationed in New Delhi, and a number had seen combat.
  Although Roosevelt polled a good majority of the votes, the late President was pressed by Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, while there was no one who came close to "Mrs. GI Joe." Close behind Eisenhower in the opinion of the voters were the men who fashioned the atomic bomb.
  GI's gave many reasons for their choice of Roosevelt - some inarticulate, all of them sincere. The way they felt about him was summed up b y a GI who said:
  "F.D.R. was war hero No. 1. His effect on the world will always be felt as long as people have the desire to be free. Besides being a great general, with the foresight to allocate sufficient funds for development of the atomic bomb, he has given the world new hope, renewed faith in people and renewed faith in themselves. He laid the foundation of the new world we're about to enter."
  The poll turned up some original selections. Queried in a chow line, one GI announced to the Roundup reporter that he was picking Adolph Hitler for his man of the year. Glares from his fellows behind and in front softened to smiles of admiration for his ingenuity when he added:
  "Hitler was the motivating factor in fusing all the major powers and free thinking peoples of the world into a mighty combination to beat the Axis."
  One member of the 53rd Machine Records Unit, Sgt. Tony Fusco, stated that he couldn't make up his mind because he didn't think there was any man of the year.
  "There are many satellites - but no sun," he pontificated.
  The question of who is entitled to be called "The Woman of the Year" was settled quickly as a result of the indecision of the unmarried men over a choice while the married men were striking a clear-unanimity of opinion in favor of their wives.
  Mrs. Joe, they felt, had "sweated out" this war as much as her husband. She had kept the home together through the rough years. She had had to grit her teeth when she saw apparently fit males walking the streets of her town or city while her "Joe" was in the Army. She'd had to be father as well as mother to the kids. And too often, she'd have to smile when "Joe" came home minus a leg or arm, and sometimes he never came home at all. For all this, and more, Mrs. Joe was their woman of the year.

  Among the unmarried men there were a few could think of no single woman who leaped to the mind for outstanding achievement or character during the year.
  Actresses, mainly, got the nod from the celibates. Among them were Esther Williams, Ingrid Bergman, Bette Davis, Rita Hayworth, and Ann Miller. GI's liked Marlene Dietrich because of her USO activities for the boys in the ETO.
  Mothers who lost sons in the war received the votes of a number of GI's. A good many of the single men, after due deliberation - about ten seconds - raised their voices in favor of the youthful American memsahib.
  For his woman of the year, Sgt. Walter Flint, continuity director at VU2ZY, chose Mme. Chiang Kai-shek because she had converted her husband to Christianity and the European way of thinking.
  "I don't think we could have been as successful in our efforts at cooperation with the Generalissimo if Mme. Chiang hadn't converted her husband." Flint said.
  Plumping for Eisenhower, Flint seemed to express for the others why they had voted for "Ike." "He lived up to the job they planned for him," he said. "The shoe fit, so he put it on."
  GI Joe, himself, got plenty of "yea's" as the one most responsible for winning the war. But usually, the GI's were prone to soft-pedal their own achievement in favor of the man who had followed so many of them into death for the cause of freedom.
  The accolade was bestowed on a whole panel of other personalities running somewhere to the rear of Roosevelt and Eisenhower. This included Frank Sinatra for his talks to the bobby-soxers, against racial intolerance; Soviet Foreign Minister Molotov, because he had gotten the most for the Russian people; Ernie Pyle, who pictured the GI with such fidelity, and President Harry Truman, who had the difficult task of guiding the U.S. to a lasting peace.
  It was agreed, however, that everybody's unofficial man of the year would be the fellow who handed GI Joe his discharge papers.

Worst Jam In U.S. History Chokes Christmas Traffic
GI's, Civilians Form In Lines At Terminals
  By Army News Service

    The worst traffic jam in the nation's history spread throughout the United States last weekend as civilians, servicemen, and brand-new dischargees surged into trains, buses and planes in a gigantic home for Christmas movement.
  Determined to spend the gayest Christmas in five years with their families, tens of thousands waited in endless lines by ticket windows, pushed into buses, stood for hours jammed in aisles of trains and some even slept overnight at airports in the hope that someone might cancel reservations.
  Holiday travelers, who ignored warnings that military travel was at its highest peak in history, and found themselves stranded miles from their destinations, had little sympathy from 168,000 Pacific War veterans at San Francisco who knew they couldn't make it.

  On the East Coast, servicemen arriving there spent their Christmases at separation centers because Army officials couldn't process them in time for their return to their homes.
  Meanwhile the United Press reported from Washington that railroad traffic conditions were such on Christmas Eve that an additional 1,000 cars diverted from other sections of the country had failed to make a dent in the West Coast jam. The use of Canadian railroads was believed to have started the day before Christmas.
  Demobilization continued to make news all over the world. At Marseilles, officials said that the work of redeployment through that giant southern French port is drawing to a close and should be completed in another 45
Concealing themselves aboard the S.S. Raymond Clapper, these two British girls landed in Boston last week. Discovered four days after the ship left Liverpool and transferred to a cabin, the 19-year-old girls claimed they have relatives in New York State. They are Joan Scott, left, and Mary Veronica Curtis.
  The War Shipping Administration in New York cited the greatest manpower shortage in the history of the American Merchant Marine as the cause of a critical situation in which 19 troop carriers are tied up in Atlantic coast ports for lack of crews.

  More than 500,00 troops arrived at New York, Boston, and Hampton Roads, Va., during November, the Merchant Marine announced, to establish the greatest trans-oceanic movement in history. Twelve GI's a minute went down gangplanks during the month.
  The Army announced that a new reduction in point scores needed for discharge will make an additional 600,000 men and women eligible. Requirements for enlisted men have been lowered to 50 points or three and one half years' service; 70 points or four years' service for officers; two years' and six months' service for enlisted WACs. Enlisted and officer WACs are now entitled to discharge upon application if they are wives of World War II veterans who have been discharged.
  The Navy also liberalized its discharge requirements with cuts in point requirements for all personnel ranging from one to eight points effective Jan. 1, Jan. 15, and Feb. 2. Because demobilization has sharply reduced officer personnel of the fleet the Navy has instructed all commands in the U.S. to submit lists of personnel available for sea duty.
  Selective Service ended the drafting of fathers last week.

China's Leaders Greet Marshall On His Arrival

    CHUNGKING - (ANS) - Gen. George C. Marshall, new American envoy to China, is moving briskly through the first steps on his admittedly difficult assignment of bringing peace and unity to China.
  He conferred with Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek after being met at the Chungking airdrome by notables including Gen. Chou En-Lai, head of the Communist delegation to forthcoming peace parleys here.
  Although Chinese Communists have proposed immediate unconditional truce and offered to put their oral proposal for armistice into writing, continued fighting was reported around Peiping. Twenty thousand Communist troops were said to be concentrated along Tsiman-to-Tsingtao Railway in Shangtung Province.
  Lt. Gen. Albert C. Wedemeyer has been authorized to assist in moving Chinese Nationalist troops to Manchurian ports when he deems it necessary, the State Department's press officer, Michael J. McDermott, disclosed at Washington.
  Also at Westmigton, shapers of naval congressional policy cast a dubious eye on a Navy proposal to turn over excess American fighting ships to the Republic of China. The proposal advanced by Navy Secretary James F. Forrestal in a letter to Speaker Sam Rayburn (D-Tex.).

Beaming GI's, bundled up against New York's cold, swarm along the rail of the USS Greeley, which sports a big sign proclaiming: "First Shipload From China." About 3,000 men were aboard the ship. This photo was made from the pier Dec. 11 as the vessel came alongside to drop down that wonderful gangplank.
New 'White Atabrine'
Proves To Be Effective
In I-B Malaria Tests

Roundup Staff Writer

    "White atabrine," a new malaria-killing drug which acts more swiftly than yellow atabrine, is taken only once a week as a suppressive, and does not turn the skin yellow, has been developed by Army medical authorities, the I-B Theater Surgeon's office disclosed this week.
  In field tests made from August to September, the new weapon against the scourge of the tropics proved itself in treatments of Indians, Chinese troops and GI's in the Ledo area. This area is know as one of the most malarious in the world.
  Over 11,000 drugs were tried and tested before "white atabrine" - designated by the Army as SN 7618 - was developed, according to Lt. Col. H. A. Van Auken, Theater Surgeon.
  A supply of the drug arrived in the India-Burma Theater in August and tests immediately were started, following procedures outlined by the Board for Coordination of Malarial Studies.
  Suppressive treatment was given to 36 Indian children at Namdang, India, along with 223 Indian coolies exposed to malaria. They were divided into three groups - one was given no drugs, a second was given yellow atabrine and the third was administered SN 7618. The first group showed malaria incidence while those taking the atabrine and SN 7618 faithfully were free of the germs. Yellow atabrine had to be taken daily, while one tablet a week of SN 7618 sufficed to ward off the disease in the third group.
  SN 7618 was also tried on three companies of the 382nd Engineer Construction Battalion and two companies of the 45th Engineer Regiment with approximately the same results. It was dispensed to malaria patients in the 25th Field Hospital and 20th General Hospital where reaction was carefully watched. Doctors found that only three days were needed to stop the progress of the illness instead of the usual five days with yellow atabrine.
  "White atabrine," emphasized Col. Van Auken, does not prevent the recurrence of vivax malaria, the recurring type, when treatment is stopped. But it is a stepping stone to more successful malaria-fighting drugs in the future, he added.

Air Personnel After January Set At 4,500

    CALCUTTA - A sweeping reduction in AAF units and personnel in the India-Burma Theater loomed this week with the announcement from AAF Headquarters here that five Air Service groups and the 4th Combat Cargo Group are in the process of inactivation.
  At the same time AAF Headquarters said that the giant air supply and service machine which once sustained the weight of air operations in Burma and Hump transport to China will be slashed by the end of January to four depots plus one collecting point, necessitating a total of 4,500 troops for operation.
  Under present AAF plans for reduction, only four depots - Assam Air Depot, Chabua; Bengal Air Depot, Titaghar; Delta Air Depot, Ranaghat; East India Air Depot, Panagarh - and one collecting point at Agra will be required to meet the AAF mission here after January. The plan estimates that 4,500 troops will be needed, the bulk of which will be stationed at the four depots, AAF Headquarters, and possible staging areas.
  Among the units being deactivated:
  The 44th Air Service Group, stationed at Dinjan, served the tactical units of the 10th Air Force with supply, maintenance and repair for the air and ground elements. Air Service areas under its control included Sookerating, Ledo and Dinjan.
  Originally destined for Java from Australia, the 51st Air Service Group was the first of its kind in India when it landed in Karachi during the dark days of Japanese conquest in the Pacific. Several months later the group was transported to China where it operated through the war.
  The 52nd Air Service Group set up housekeeping at Jorhat in September, 1943. Here their Service Center area included ATC, 80th Fighter Group, anti-aircraft outfits and various other type units.
  Seven days after the fall of Myitkyina, Group Headquarters moved in and set to work. From Myitkyina detachments were sent out to Warazup and Sahmaw later to be the bases for 490th Bombardment "Bridge Busters" and the 33rd Fighter Group strikes in Central and Southern Burma.
  The 301st Air Service Group arrived in this theater at Lalmanirhat in 1943. After six months of servicing
These pretty WAVES, yo 2/c Sara Jo Forward, left, of Pittsburgh and Sp 2/c Helen Grimm of Buffalo, are shown above with the recently authorized Victory and American Theater ribbons at the U.S. Naval Training Center at Sampson, N.Y.
ATC ships there, the group went to Tezpur by air, taking on work from Misamari and Rupsi. Improvising was the keynote of the 301st accomplishment and as evidence they received the Meritorious Service Unit placques for building a modern, efficient bakery from old scrap.
  Service on three continents is the record of the 329th Air Service Group which for the past year and a half has been supplying and maintaining airplanes flying the Hump to China. Known as the "Global Planesmen," the 329th saw action in North Africa and Italy before coming to India.
  The first group ever to fly its entire complement of air and ground personnel from the States, the 4th Combat Cargo Group flew their initial combat missions from Sylhet less than three weeks after leaving Uncle Sugar.
  Setting up as part of the Combat Cargo Task Force, "4th Comcar" began participating in the aerial transport of material from India to the British 14th Army and 33rd Corps. Sixty-four airstrips from Ledo to Rangoon were used by this group throughout the operation. During the six months under CCTF, the 4th Combat Cargo Group carried 133,830 tons of supplies to the battlefronts and often beyond. This was accomplished in 465,302 hours of flight, or nearly 550 round-the-world trips.

Homing I-B Newsmen Find 'Home' At Malir

By SGT. ED SEMPRINI    Roundup Field Writer

    KARACHI - Officially it's the Information and Education Office. But to homeward-bound GI newspapermen and newscasters, the Replacement Depot No. 1 "I & E" office is both a sanctum where they can gripe in each other's suds, and a "city room" the likes of which they have never seen before, and most likely will never see again.
  Through the portals of this desert press room have stumbled some of the oddest characters in the newspaper and radio business. Despite their eccentricities these GI newsmen, crazed with thoughts of Stateside city rooms where they soon will hang their toupees (most of them lost their natural hair by overindulging in bamboo juice), have three things in common.
  First, they all dress alike. Second, they all eat the same grub, and last, they all drink the same bamboo juice. Otherwise the characters, who have transferred the I & E office from a quiet, sacred schoolroom into a noisy newspaper office, are as alike as chalk and cheese.
  Presiding over this sanctuary is Lt. Norman T. Walker, who has been watching the steady stream flow in and out of his office since back in September. The boys call Walker "The Publisher," but what the good lieutenant calls the boys is something else.
  "There are more newspapermen here then covered the Normandy invasion," quipped the lieutenant. "And I'll bet the first character I meet when I get off the boat will be a reporter."
  Walker, a chubby, cheerful, affable chap, comes from Chicago where "regardless of what you read about the Chicago newspaper characters they run a poor second to the assortment of scribblers who work here."
  Assisting Walker in official duties and as "chief reporter-greeter" is a veteran of the civilian and GI press. He is Sgt. Chet Holcomb who has shaken more hands and slapped more backs than a politician at a clambake. Holcombe, who besides serving as press secretary and looking after the needs of his dust-caked colleagues, edits a daily news sheet for the Depot.
  A native of Avon, N.Y., Holcombe was with International News Service and United Press in the Far East, and worked as a newspaperman in Washington before entering the service. He was formerly a Yank staff writer and has contributed articles to Roundup.
  Perhaps the biggest puzzle to both Walker and Holcombe is how these wandering GI reporters discover the I & E office with a minimum of difficulty.
  "We hear tell," relates Walker, "that Malir is a squirrel's cage and the easiest place in which to get lost. Yet, these characters, despite confusing burro paths, desert roads, nameless streets and what have you, sniff out the I & E in no time."

  By SGT. CHARLES KELLOGG    Roundup Assistant Editor

    Late in the evening of December 9, a khaki-clad GI leaned close to a microphone in what had once been an unused warehouse on the giant Southern India Air Depot of the USAAF in Bangalore and said simply: "This is VU2ZP, your Armed Forces radio station, signing off the air for the last time."
  With those words there came to an end broadcasting activities which started on January 29, only nine days after Col. Melville C. Robinson, the commanding officer of Southern India Air Depot, made known to AFR the need for a radio station at the sprawling air base, located in the south central part of India.
  During its short life on the India airwaves, VU2ZP was for American, British and Indian troops in the Bangalore area their main source of news and entertainment, due to the fact that Bangalore is out of the range of any station on the medium broadcast band. From its inception, the AFR outlet had an international audience and many of its programs followed that theme.

  Highlighting the news activities of VU2ZP was the first flash that the Japanese had accepted the terms of the Potsdam declaration. At 5:35 on the morning of August 14, VU2ZP brought that news to its audience, thus making Bangalore the first major city in India to learn of the surrender.
  Conversion of the warehouse in which the first broadcast was made, into a modern, well-equipped broadcasting center was completed on Feb. 18 with the assistance of American civilian employees of the Hindustan Aircraft, Ltd. At the time of its final broadcast VU2ZP boasted two studios, a reception room, an office and transmitter. Installation of equipment and the solution of technical problems were handled by Capt. Robert L. Black, radio officer of the I-B Theater, and Sgts. Henry Alto and Howard T. MacFarland.
  The station used regular AFR programs, made in the United States and flown to Bangalore and Army News Service material for its news broadcasts, as well as originating a number of "live" programs in its own studios.

Wartime queens of the annual Pasadena, Calif., "Tournament of Roses" announce the theme - "Victory, Unity and Peace," for the New Year's Day resumption of the floral fete in that city. The girls are Naomi Riordan (left), the 1944 queen, and Mrs. Robert Stephens, who, as Mildred Miller, was adjudged queen of the 1943 carnival.
Two of the latter, "Sunrise Serenade," and "Strike Up The Band," were extended from 30 minutes to an hour each as audience reaction proved their popularity.
  VU2ZP extended a "helping hand" to tens of thousands of British troops in South India when George Formby, Britain's leading musical star, visited the Bangalore area. Unable to make personal appearances before all the troops in that area. Formby stepped before a VU2ZP microphone and brought a touch of England and home to home-sick Londoners.
  Included on the staff of the station were Arthur J. Tracy of Goulds, Fla., William F. Keating, New Haven, Conn., Burt B. Urdank, North Hollywood, Calif., Kent Haven of Grand Rapids, Mich., Marvin M. Zelony of New York, Gordon J. Seopa, Tago, Minn., Howard T. MacFarland, Belmont, Mass., and Gilbert S. Croft of St. Louis, Mo.
  In an official commendation to personnel of the station, Col. Roy H. Lynn, commanding officer of the depot, said the "VU2ZP has been a constant source of entertainment to the officers and men of Southern India Air Depot, and has served with appreciable effectiveness as a factor in maintaining a high standard of morale.
  "Furthermore, as the comments of various Allied commanders have borne out," Lynn continued, "the benefits of the station have been limited only as its broadcast range has been limited. To British and Indian troops, as well as our own, the Armed Forces Radio Service presentations from VU2ZP have come as welcome entertainment features in the otherwise near-barren medium of radio."
  In commemoration of their stay at Bangalore, members of the staff recently published an illustrated brochure called Yank Radio . . . Bangalore, illustrated with photographs of the staff at work and the studio.

Dear Editor:
  We, the truck drivers, read the article in the Roundup and we are very sorry the casuals here are so dissatisfied with transportation at Malir.
  We, the truck drivers, are unhappy, but nevertheless we are not taking spite on you casuals in not riding you to your destination (Beer Garden, PX, Theater, Swimming Poll, etc.). These trucks are on dispatch. If we stopped to pick up each casual that wants a lift the truck would never get to its destination or do its job.
  We were sent here to do a job. That job is to take care of this post with details and to take lucky GI's to the ship for return home.
  It is not the intention of the drivers to run over any one, but if you notice, there are signs posted all over this post "Walk Facing Traffic." Now, if you have bumpers on, just do the opposite of what the sign says and you will find that our bumpers are not as soft as yours.
  As for your buddy who wanted sympathy from a driver because he was on crutches, he has made it hard for any GI who may be in that condition. We will think that its another prank.
  Oh yes, Sergeant Clark, our mothers taught us rules that we haven't forgotten, but we can't and you can't compare home training with military training in this respect. We are very sorry you and the rest of the casuals are dissatisfied but this is still the Army.
      3997th QM Truck Co, Drivers, APO 883 (Malir, India)

Dear Editor:
  In your Dec. 13 issue, I noticed an article stating that a General was flying home from Japan for his first Xmas with his wife since 1941.
  I also spent my last Xmas with my wife in 1941, and have been overseas 27 months and its only nine days before Xmas of 1945 and me and 68 points are still in Replacement Depot No. 1 waiting for a boat which I've been waiting for for 25 days.
  It is never considered that an EM cares just as much for his wife as the "Brass Hats" and would like to be home for Xmas as much.
  I've been eligible for going home ever since Nov. 1 but the "Big Wigs" haven't stopped to consider getting us fellows out of this tropical climate who have two years and more, for Xmas.
  Happy landing.
      Sgt. GEORGE CLAYTON, APO 883 (Malir, India)

Dear Editor:
  In reference to the article printed in the Roundup of Dec. 6 on the doings of the 1877th Engineers. I beg to inform you that the 1888th Engineers was the first heavy equipment engineering battalion in Myitkyina, and was the first engineer outfit to cut their equipment up and have it flown into Myitkyina.
  Another thing: when the 1877th arrived in Myitkyina, the fighting was over and we had damn near completed the building of the north air strip. I like to give credit where credit is due.
  The first B-29 strip in India was built by the 1888th Engineers at Piardoba, India, and for the first attacks on Japan the planes lined up and took off from the field we built.
  We arrived in Myitkyina on the 25th of July, 1944. That's the date the 1877th came to Myitkyina. The first Engineer outfit in Myitkyina before it fell was the 879th Airborne Engineers.
      Cpl. ALPHONSE STEWART, Co. A, 1888th E. A. B., APO 689 (Ledo, India)

Patton Buried Near Men He Led Through 'Bulge'

    HEIDELBERG, GERMANY - (ANS) - The body of Gen. George S. Patton, Jr. was laid to rest Monday beside the bodies of U.S. Third Army officers and men who fell during the desperate battle of the "Bulge" a year ago. Interment was in an American cemetery at Hamm, four miles east of Luxembourg City.
  Patton, who died last week as the result of an embolism caused by injuries sustained in an automobile accident nine days previous, was carried to his final resting place by enlisted men who served under him during his smashing drive to victory against the Nazi war machine.
  Funeral services were held in ancient Christ Church at Heidelberg as high-rankiong officers and plain GI's who fought with him bowed their heads in final tribute to Patton, who served as head of the Third and Seventh Armies during the European conflict. Lt. Gen. Waltos H. Walker represented Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower.
  Escorted by eight armored cars, Patton's body was moved Sunday from a hilltop villa near Heidelberg, where he had been lying in state, to the church. Armed guards lined Heidelberg's main thorofare as the procession moved slowly past throngs of soldiers and German civilians.
  Following Episcopalian services, Patton's body was moved by a half-track to the Heidelberg station, where it was placed aboard a train for the journey to Hamm. Six hundred men who served under Patton in combat were brought from Nuremberg to form the honor guard.
  Patton was born at San Gabriel, Calif., 60 years ago. He entered West Point in 1904 and graduated five years later, after an indifferent scholastic but outstanding athletic career. He was on the Army footbal team, excelled in track and was judged one of the finest horsemen of his class.
  He was the first American to participate in the gruelling modern Pentathalon 1913 Olympics.
  Patton served on the Mexican border in 1916-17 under General John J. Pershing and later went to France in charge of the headquarters unit of the first AEF ship. He was the first officer assigned to an American tank corps.

Victory In IBT, Return To Homes Highlighted 1945

It was men and animals like these Mars Task Force GI's and Missouri mules, pictured as they crossed one of Burma's many rivers last spring, that drove the Japanese from the hills and jungles of that land to bring victory and peace to the Burmese. Men and mules of three nations combined to run the Japs out of the I-B and hasten the end of the war.
Roundup Assistant Editor

    As the year 1945 drew to a close this week, personnel of three Allied nations in the India-Burma Theater looked back upon 365 days which included victory over the Japanese armies which held much of Burma a year ago and looked ahead to a world filled with plans for peace and reconstruction.
  During the initial months of the year American, British and Chinese troops, combined under the leadership of Lt. Gen. Daniel I. Sultan, drove the Jap armies back from northern Burma, opened the Stilwell Road to China, captured the principal Burmese cities of Mandalay and Rangoon and were clearing the last remnants of Nipponese might from the areas along the Burma-Thailand border when the end of the war came.
  Since then plans for the return of the American troops to the United States plus the disposal of vast amounts of U.S. equipment and supplies still in the I-B have occupied the minds of high officials and plain GI's alike. In the following summary the Roundup presents briefly the story of 1945, month by month.

  Mars Brigade and Chinese troops under NCAC drove south along the route to Lashio and blocked heavy enemy pressure near Wanting. Chinese troops took over the city of Loi-Wing, first place in China to fall to Burma-based troops. Work on the airstrip at Bhamo continued under Jap sniper fire. British troops, working in conjunction with Sultan's campaign in the north, seized Akyab Island without opposition, to end the Arakan campaign. The U.S. 10th Air Force set a record with 1,100 bombing sorties in a single day over Mandalay, Meiktila and the Ava Bridge. On Jan. 25 Sultan announced that the Stilwell-Burma Road route to China was open with the fall of Wanting. Mars troops marched 300 miles from Tonkwa to establish strong positions on the Burma Road 30 miles south of Mongyu.

  "Uncle Joe" Stilwell was named chief of Army Ground Forces. The Roundup ended its service to personnel of the China Theater, as a separate paper began publication in Kunming. The first convoy arrived in Kunming as Mars and Chinese troops drove down the Burma Road against heavy Jap opposition. The XX Bomber Command presented the Distinguished Service Cross to pilot Jack C. Ledford. Capt. Floyd Walter, Roundup Editor, visited Stilwell in Washington and reported that "he hasn't changed." As the month ended troops of the Chinese 50th Division were only 22 air miles from Lashio, important Burma Road city.

  Pfc. Jack Nolan, former Roundup cartoonist, was awarded the Legion of Merit. ATC started regular flights between Calcutta and the Netherlands East Indies with connecting flights to Australia and the Philippines. Chinese New First Army captured Lashio, 50th Division forces took Hsipaw and the British 36th Division occupied Mogok. The British 14th Army had surrounded Mandalay to complete Sultan's three-pronged drive into Central Burma, and had 30,000 Nips encircled in a death trap. Ten GI's of Mars units were given field commissions.

  Personnel in the I-B joined with the rest of the world in mourning the death of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Sultan was awarded the second Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster to his DSM for his work as commander of Allied troops in Burma. B-24's of the 7th Bomb Group concentrated on Jap installations in the Rangoon area and the British 14th Army continued their drive on the ground toward that city. Mandalay fell.

  Announcement that the I-B-to-China pipeline was in operation came as the month opened. Pfc. Armand Spinelli was the first GI from the I-B to return home under the 45-day temporary duty plan. Rangoon fell. The first Congressional Medal of Honor to be presented a member of the I-B was presented posthumously to Lt. Jack Knight of the 124th Cavalry. Celebrations over the defeat of Germany were many but subdued as local GI's realized that the Japs were still in the war. I-B and SOS headquarters were consolidated with Sultan assuming command and an I-B ATC jeep was discovered in France although no one knew it had gone AWOL.

  The USAAF was withdrawn from the Eastern Air Command, having completed its combat mission. Redeployment of American and Chinese troops to the China Theater over the Stilwell Road and by air reached a new peak with Myitkyina in use as a staging area. Pilot Frank W. Peterson effected the first successful evacuation of a seriously ill GI from an isolated spot in Burma through the use of a helicopter. A trans-Himalayan telephone line was completed, connecting Calcutta and Kunming. Over 1,500 I-B troops were sent home for discharge. Lt. Gen. Raymond A. Wheeler replaced Sultan as I-B chief.

  Wheeler outlined the I-B mission as one of supply to China. Monsoon floods washed out the northern Burma section of the Stilwell Road for brief periods. S/Sgt. Charles Salerno, who flew more than 300 hours of operational flights in the I-B was awarded the DFC. Maj. Gen. Frank D. Merrill, head of the Marauders, left the I-B for a new assignment and Lt. Col. Gordon S. Seagrave said he would resign from the Army to return to his work among the hill tribes of Burma.

  Mongyu, once the scene of the bloodiest battle fought by Mars troops during the campaign, became a headquarters for U.S. forces fighting smugglers. "Uncle Joe" lost his famous campaign hat during a plane ride on Okinawa, but got it back after he offered $25 for its return. GI's joined with the rest of the world in a celebration of the end of the war and the Jap surrender, but convoys still pounded over the "Road" with supplies for China.

  Men with 80 points started their way home as demobilization got into full swing. Thirty tiny liaison planes showed the way to their big sisters with a mass flight over the Hump from Calcutta to Kunming. The Navy deserted the sea to run a convoy over the "Road" to Shanghai. Sgt. John Stevens dropped 7,000 feet with one arm in the ring of his chute and made it. The Roundup celebrated its third anniversary on Sept. 13. Maj. Gen. Thomas A. Terry replaced Wheeler as Theater CG.

  Terry promised he would get I-B personnel home with the greatest possible speed and asked for cooperation of essential men. The first mass shipment of I-B personnel arrived in New York aboard the USS General Greeley
with 3,075 troops aboard. ATC completed its second round-the-world flight, touching at Calcutta and Karachi.

  Sultan met I-B veterans on the New York docks and talked to them in his role as Inspector General of the Army. 45,000 troops left the Theater for the U.S. ATC announced that 776,532 tons of material had been flown over the Hump in three years with a loss of 594 planes with 910 crew members killed and 130 missing. Ground casualties in the Burma campaign were set at 27,905 Chinese, British and American troops. Motor vehicles delivered over the "Road" topped the 25,700 mark.

  Navy Secretary James V. Forestal announced that 70,333 I-B and China veterans had been returned to the U.S. by the first of the month. Sgt. Bill Unger, who arrived in Burma with the "Flying Tigers" in August, 1941, passed through New Delhi on his way home. A 30-ton locomotive came back over the Stilwell Road by trailer after serving on the Myitkyina-Mandalay line. The last Chinese troops to leave the I-B departed from Ledo. GI's with 50 points made ready for their trip to "Uncle Sugar" as the year made its final bow and historians closed the book on 1945 in the India-Burma Theater.

The Roundup is a weekly newspaper of the United States Forces, published by and for the men in Burma and India, from news and pictures supplied by staff members, soldier correspondents, Army News Service, and United Press. The Roundup is published Thursday of each week and is printed by The Statesman in New Delhi and Calcutta, India. Editorial matter should be sent directly to Major Floyd Walter, Hq., U.S.F., I.B.T., APO 885, New York, N.Y., and should arrive not later than Saturday in order to make that week's issue. Pictures must arrive by Friday and must be negatives or enlargements. Stories should contain full name and organization of sender. Complaints about circulation should be sent directly to Capt. Drexel Nixon, Base Section, APO 465, New York, N.Y. Units on the mailing list should make notification of any major change in personnel strength or any change of APO.

DECEMBER  27,  1945    

Original issue of Roundup shared by CBI veteran Bob Fagelson

Copyright © 2007 Carl Warren Weidenburner