1940-1949 | Nuclear Armageddon

Foreign Secretary on the need to get a Union Jack on the atom bomb

25 October 1946 A little over a year had passed since the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killing over one hundred thousand people, when, on 25 October 1946, Ernest Bevin, the Foreign Secretary of Britain’s first post-war Labour government, showed up late to a meeting of the Atomic Energy Committee at…

1940-1949 | Antisemitism | Collective punishments | Palestine

British commander orders troops to ‘show contempt for Jews’

25 July 1946 On 25 July 1946, General Sir Evelyn Barker, commanding British forces in Palestine, issued an order to all ranks instructing them that ‘all Jewish places of entertainment, cafes, restaurants, shops and dwellings’ were out of bounds and calling on his men to punish Jews ‘by showing our contempt for them.’  The order…

1940-1949 | Civilians slaughtered | India

British troops and police in Bombay kill two hundred protesters

21 February 1946 During this day in 1946 and the next, colonial police and British troops shot dead at least two hundred demonstrators in Bombay, who were demanding independence and a withdrawal of the British Army. The protests started with a general strike, called on 21 February, in solidarity with a widespread mutiny among Indian…

1940-1949 | Civilians slaughtered | Egypt

British troops in Cairo shoot dead twenty demonstrators with machine guns

21 February 1946 On 21 February 1946, British troops opened fire, with machine guns, on protesters in Midan Ismailiya (now better known as Tahrir Square) in central Cairo, killing twenty and injuring about 300.1  According to a report in the Scotsman the following day: ‘The Square outside the Kasr El Nil Barracks was a smoke-filled battleground…

1940-1949 | India

Indian sailors ‘loose control of their senses’ in anti-British mutiny

18 February 1946 On 18 February 1946, a mutiny erupted across almost the entire Indian Navy, against their British naval commanders. Starting with a strike over the quality of the food on board a warship, the Talwar, anchored in Bombay Harbour, it quickly spread to 22 other ships in the port and by 22 February,…

1940-1949

Singapore colonial police kill activists commemorating ‘wrong’ anniversary

15 February 1946 At about 11 am on 15 February 1946, British troops and colonial police armed with loaded rifles and batons, charged into a crowd of  protesters assembling on Bras Basah Road in Singapore. Journalists witnessed demonstrators beaten as they lay on the ground.  Live fire was also used and one protester was shot…

1940-1949 | Myanmar

18 MAY

BURMESE COLONIAL POLICE SHOOT DEAD PROTESTING VILLAGERS [ 18 May 1946 ] Today in 1946, Burmese colonial police shot dead five protesters in the town of Tantabin, near Rangoon. Most of the demonstrators were villagers. They had been demanding a delay on the repayment on loans due to food shortages and the release of 65…