FORMER AUSTRALIAN FLYER TELLS OF
A former Royal Australian Air Force captain has claimed that American prisoners were killed with poison gas bombs in an American-directed experiment toward the end of World War II.
The Americans, according to John Hampshire, who made the disclosure to Australian newspapers Sunday night, were all prisoners in U.S. jails who had been promised their sentences would be shortened if they survived the tests, conducted on an island off the coast of Australia.
Asked about the charges, a Pentagon spokesman said Monday, "Records immediately available indicate that no American tests of the type alleged were conducted. We are continuing to research our retired historical files. The Australian Defense Ministry is also checking the allegation.
THEY DIED LIKE RATS - DIDN'T HAVE A CHANCE
The American prisoners were told to hide in bunkers 30 feet below the ground, Hampshire said. He and other Australian pilots - none of whom, he said, knew that there were people there - then bombed the island with 360 canisters of mustard gas bombs on Jan. 21, 1944.
Hampshire told United Press International in an interview that the bombing mission, using U.S. Army planes, was led by a U.S. officer, Lt. Col. Jess Crowther of the 5th U.S. Air Force, then based at Charters Towers in northern Queensland.
The former RAAF officer said he was speaking out now because the Australian government recently agreed to give compensation to men who had suffered injuries in other gas experiments during the war.
The experiment in which he participated, said Hampshire, was to test whether gas could be effectively used against Japanese troops resisting Allied landings on Pacific Islands. Hampshire said he had been told that all the Americans had died, but he did not know how many prisoners had been involved.
[EDITOR'S NOTE: We are indebted to the United Press International bureau in Canberra, Australia who originated this dispatch on the UPI world wire April 14, 1975. At that time, Americans were preoccupied with the news out of Vietnam, as Communist forces were closing in on Saigon. We don't know how many newspapers in America even ran this dispatch, but we thought it speaks for itself and should be made available now to the worldwide reading audience of MilitaryCorruption.com
We also invite your attention to the third paragraph in the story - the one framed by brackets. Note that the Pentagon spokesman said records IMMEDIATELY AVAILABLE indicated that "no American tests of the type alleged were conducted." Then the PAO flack continued "we are continuing to research our RETIRED historical files."
What all that parsing and "double-speak" means is, is that the Pentagon was using an old trick - phrasing words so that they can be interpreted several ways. We have no doubt that the bombing incident in which many American prisoners were, in effect, killed, went into the proverbial "memory hole." When the statement said the Army was continuing to research "our RETIRED files," they weren't talking about the still active files marked SECRET and TOP SECRET. Those are the ones that covered up this, one of the more horrific episodes of moral bankruptcy that marked the history of fighting the war in the Pacific.]