The Man Inside : The Bloodiest Outbreak
by Graham Apthorpe
Editor: Big Sky Publishing
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Graham Apthorpe’s account of the Cowra epidemic is superbTold in a fresh, original and elegant way in prose, and with a wonderful gift for taking the unexpected, he does great service to this amazing Australian-event in Japan, and will have the honor of placing in the canon fascinating works on the incidentThomas Keneally The War in the Pacific has turned; thousands of previously invincible Japanese soldiers are now being captured in New Guinea and interned at Cowra Prisoner of War CampUnlike other Prisoners of War, the traditional Japanese Bushido Code and their fanaticism leaves poorly equipped for surrender and imprisonmentShame, weakness and gloom, one man, Second Lieutenant of Maseo Naka is an exceptionObstruction of Australian authorities every turn, he was the first Japanese soldier to escape CowraThis action is the precursor for the more than 1000 Japanese prisoners who escape in the bloodiest outbreaks of World War II which eventually saw 234 Japanese and four Australian guards killedFrom his escape and the distrust, guilt and shame that animated him, led to a court martialNaka nevertheless stands out very human, the other tragic victim of the world of hell that was the Second World WarBy adhering to the Samurai Code of Bushido, he obstinately undertook actions that he considers necessary for the maintenance of his “honor”.Through the knowledge of those around Naka, with new research, including the personal accounts of the Australian interrogators, the author shows how this handsome loner gave impetus for the dramatic events in the early hours of August 5, 1944, when hundreds of Japanese soldiers stormed the Defense Camp for Honour, or death
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