documents lift lid on WWII mutiny by black US troops in Australia

Discussion in 'The Fire For Effect and Totally Politically Incorr' started by jack404, Feb 10, 2012.

  1. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

    Jan 11, 2010

    An Australian historian has uncovered hidden documents which reveal that African American troops used machine guns to attack their white officers in a siege on a US base in north Queensland in 1942.

    Information about the Townsville mutiny has never been released to the public.

    But the story began to come to light when James Cook University's Ray Holyoak first began researching why US congressman Lyndon B Johnson visited Townsville for three days back in 1942.

    What he discovered was evidence detailing one of the biggest uprisings within the US military.

    "For 70 years there's been a rumour in Townsville that there was a mutiny among African-American servicemen. In the last year and a half I've found the primary documentation evidence that that did occur in 1942," Mr Holyoak told AM.

    During World War II, Townsville was a crucial base for campaigns into the Pacific, including the Battle of the Coral Sea.

    About 600 African-American troops were brought to the city to help build airfields.

    Mr Holyoak says these troops, from the 96th Battalion, US Army Corps of Engineers, were stationed at a base on the city's western outskirts known as Kelso.

    This was the site for a large-scale siege lasting eight hours, which was sparked by racial taunts and violence.

    "After some serial abuse by two white US officers, there was several ringleaders and they decided to machine gun the tents of the white officers," Mr Holyoak said.

    He has uncovered several documents hidden in the archives of the Queensland Police and Townsville Brigade detailing what happened that night.

    According to the findings, the soldiers took to the machine guns and anti-aircraft weapons and fired into tents where their white counterparts were drinking.

    More than 700 rounds were fired.

    At least one person was killed and dozens severely injured, and Australian troops were called in to roadblock the rioters.

    Mr Holyoak also discovered a report written by Robert Sherrod, a US journalist who was embedded with the troops.

    It never made it to the press, but was handed to Lyndon B Johnson at a Townsville hotel and eventually filed away into the National Archives and Records Administration.

    "I think at the time, it was certainly suppressed. Both the Australian and the US government would not have wanted the details of this coming out. The racial policies at the time really discluded [sic] people of colour," Mr Holyoak says.

    Both the Australian Defence Department and the Australian War Memorial say it could take months to research the incident, and say they have no details readily available for public release.

    But Townsville historian Dr Dorothy Gibson-Wilde says the findings validate 70-year-old rumours.

    "Anytime it was raised, people usually sort of said, 'Oh you know, no that can't be true. Nobody's heard about that', and in fact it must have been kept pretty quiet from the rest of the town," she said.

    Mr Holyoak will spend the next two years researching the sentences handed out to both the officers and the mutineers involved, and why the information has been kept secret for so long.
  2. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

    Jan 11, 2010
    be very grateful they did not recruit locals to help or they'd have snuck in and slit everyones throats

    i'd heard this rumour for years but thought it a bit much

    but we do know many african americans deserted while in Australia and tried to pass themselves off as aboriginals

    the indigenous council has over 200 reports of folks doing this
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2012

  3. glens67

    glens67 Well-Known Member

    Dec 19, 2010
    Middleton, ID
    Forcing the Blacks to work unsafe was common at that time.
    Port Chicago disaster

    Main article: Port Chicago disaster Concord Califorina (SF bay area)

    The munitions on board a Navy cargo ship exploded while being loaded during World War II, resulting in the largest number of casualties among African Americans in any one incident during that war. On the evening of July 17, 1944 a massive explosion instantly killed 320 sailors, merchant seamen and civilians working at the pier. The blast was felt 30 miles away. A subsequent refusal by 258 black sailors to load any more ammunition was the beginning of the Navy's largest-ever mutiny trial in which 50 men were found guilty. Future Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall sat in on most of the proceedings and declared that he saw a prejudiced court
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2012
  4. The_Rifleman

    The_Rifleman Well-Known Member

    Feb 10, 2010
    Wow! I never heard of it.
  5. Jackman

    Jackman Member

    Jan 12, 2008
    Reports like that show us how far we've come , I think we're blending nicely the present is much better than the past.
  6. Millwright

    Millwright Well-Known Member

    Jun 30, 2005
    Reports of this "Townsville Rebellion" shows how far the U.S. has come in racial "equality" or more correctly become "racially neutral" and how quickly its regressed under the OA ! >MW
  7. raven818

    raven818 Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2011
    Jax, Fl.
    During World War II, Townsville was a crucial base for campaigns into the
    How does building airfields during war time, and forcing blacks to do unsafe work compute? I don't see the connection between the two.

    Building the airfields was their assigned duties. They decided to fire machine guns into the tents instead of taking their complaint up the line. way to justify it.
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