Riley Affidavit
Regarding Nagoya Branch 2 Narumi

Narumi Main        Nagoya-08 Tateyama Main

Source: NARA Record Group 331, Box 942; Mansell NARA 7


WALTER NORMAN RILEY make oath and says:

I am a medical practitioner and hold the degrees -M.R.C.S. L.R.C.P (Lond). My permanent home address is now No 649, Leeds Road, Bradford, and I am the assistant to Dr. David Black.
I have been qualified as a doctor since July, 1937.

On the 19th March, 1940, I volunteered for service with the Royal Air Force and was called up on the 28th January, 1941. I was granted a Commission as Flying Officer.

After service in England I sailed from England on the 8th December, 1941 and proceeded to Java. I served in Java, then Sumatra, again Java, and was made a prisoner of the 8th March, 1942 by the Japanese, due to the capitulation of the Allied Forces in the East Indies.
I have been a prisoner at eight camps under the Japanese, four in Java, one in Singapore, and three in Japan. I was not the senior medical officer at any of these camps, with the exception of two, i.e., first at Nagoya 8B [actually 2B], Prisoner of War Camp, from 15th January, 1944 to 10th May, 1945, and from 10th May, 1945 to September, 1945, at Toyama - British Prisoner of War Camp [actually Nag-08B Tateyama].
I arrived at Nagoya on the 15th January, 1944, having traveled alone under escort from Osaka Prisoner of War Camp [most likely Osaka 1B Chikko]. A few days before I arrived there, four hundred British Prisoners of War had been sent to Nagoya from Hong Kong. There was no officer in charge of these men at all, and I was put in charge by the Japanese in a purely medical capacity.

I had not previously been at this camp, nor did I know any of the British personnel there. This was a new camp, which had just been completed.

This camp was built on the side of a steep hill, and was constructed solely of wood. It was not well constructed, the place was very flimsy, and quite inadequate for keeping out the cold. The side of the buildings were of three ply type of wood, and the roofs were of some wooden composition material. The floors were of earth.
At first there were two large huts, each for the accommodation of two hundred men, subsequently a third one was built to accommodate two hundred Americans who arrived in August, 1944.

These huts were arranged in two tiers. The first tier was about two foot from the ground; the second tier, reached by means of ladders, was about five feet higher than the lowest one. It was not possible to stand up properly in either tier. The prisoners were not supplied with beds, but were given straw mats, approximately six feet by three feet - one mat for each prisoner. For the pillow we had a canvas container filled with rice husks. For the first winter, the men there were each supplied with five blankets, the the second winter it was cut down to three. There was not so much snow at this place as it was near the coast, but we had heavy frosts in the winter, and it was very cold.

The Japanese Officer in charge, i.e., the Camp Commandant, was named Lieutenant Tanaka [TANAKA, Hiroshi]. From what I could ascertain about this man, he was a University graduate, spoke perfect English and his home was in Osaka. He was 26 years of age, fairly tall for a Japanese, about 5'9' in height.

At first the impression gained of this was good, but as time went on, his true character became apparent. He was always issuing petty instructions and mass punishments. He would not allow the prisoners to wear greatcoats until the 1st of January, although the month of December was cold. He was disliked by his own Japanese staff.

My main complaint against him was on account of his attitude toward sick personnel. He always insisted that full working parties be sent out, irrespective of the number of men who were unfit for work. This was a very difficult task as far as I was concerned. The number of sick personnel allowed was being continually limited, irrespective of occasional epidemics. Once the figure for the permitted sick was fixed, I do not now know this figure, but it was gradually lessened on his instructions. I had to parade the sick men before the Japanese Medical Orderly, who varied from time to time. Each evening after the daily sick parade any new patients who I wished to keep in camp the following day had to be paraded before this man. The patients and myself would frequently be kept standing for half an hour awaiting his pleasure. Although I took particular care to select only those patients who were genuinely unfit for any type of work, it was seldom that permission was granted for all the men to remain in camp, usually there would not be more than five new patients of this kind. For every patient who received permission to remain in camp the following day one old patient had to be sent out to the factory to take his place in the working party. This meant that I had to be continually selecting sick men to put on the Working Party List. This put me in a terrible position. As far as I can gather these arrangements were followed on orders from a higher authority.

The prisoners were engaged upon work in a heavy industry factory; this factory was situated in the City of Nagoya about twenty minutes traveling distance away from the camp by train. The factory was engaged in the manufacture of heavy locomotive engines. I was given the opportunity on one occasion of visiting this factory. I was invited by the then Japanese Medical orderly- Sgt. Haisahi, but I later learned that much of the power had been turned off during my visit. The hours of work were approximately 8 a.m. to noon and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m day shift. In the middle of the morning they had a break of ten minutes, this was repeated in the afternoons. Work was carried on every day, including Sunday, and the men received one day's holiday every fortnight, this usually fell upon a Wednesday.

The type of work at the factory varied; the men were divided up into seven working parties, the personnel in each party varied. The largest party was engaged in the Moulding Shop, and this wrok was of an extremely heavy nature. Party No. 7 was composed of men who, under normal circumstance, would never be allowed to do any work at all.. Most of the men on No. 7 party suffered from malnutrition diseases, beri beri, etc. The party was first formed by the Camp Commandant as a 'wangle' to reduce the camp official sick figures. Their work consisted of sweeping, carrying pieces of scrap metal, making string, sorting nails, etc. This factory was run by civilians. Each workshop had its own civilian leader or honcho. Unfortunately, there were also semi military escorts, who conducted the men to and from the factory. These men were called gunzuko. They were recruited from ex-soldiers, who had received a war injury of an incapacitating nature. The gunzuko in charge of the No. 7 Party was named Tanaka (the same name as the Camp Commandant, but no relation). (He is shown on the extreme right of the back row on the
attached photograph - standing, as it appears on the photograph). This man was particularly cruel to the men in No. 7 Party. He refused to allow them to sit down and kept them on the move the whole time. I understand that the civilian personnel at the factory treated the men fairly well on the whole.

Prior to the men's departure from the Camp to the factory they had to parade for roll call, and afterwards to march down to the railway station. They would often have to wait half an hour for the train. During this time, they were obliged to stand in ranks and were not allowed to move about to keep warm. I remember an incident on this parade, it was an American. He asked permission to leave the ranks to void urine, and this was refused. He was in agony, so [he] broke ranks and voided urine against the wall. The gunsuko Tanaka was in charge, and he made the American (whose name I do not remember) lick up the urine off the ground.

These men had to travel in an electric train, accompanied by gunsukos and Japanese civilians known as 'Stickmen'. A dail incident occurred aas the men were entering and leaving this train. The stickmen used to puch the prisoners into the carriages, and the last man to enter or leave the train as the case may be, received a beating from these 'stickmen'. I complained many times to the Camp Commandant about this, but without result.

On one occasion there was an air raid on Nagoya, and this was during the time the men were on the train. The prisoners were lock in the train and all the guards, etc., left the train to take cover, The train, however, was not hit.

I produce a copy of a letter dated 22nd March, 1944 which I addressed to the Japanese Camp Commandant at the Camp, and this deals particularly with dietary deficiencies. [not scanned]

The prisoners were issued with second hand Japanese soldier's clothing. For the winter the same clothing was used, with the addition of an inner lining of ribbed thicker material. They were also issued with greatcoats, some of them were second hand Japanese issue, other were captured British garments. Each man was issued with two pairs of long underpants as used by the Japanese Army, and two pairs of thin white cotton socks. Footwear was always a problem because of the difficulty in obtaining repair materials; a certain number of the American boots were issued from time to time, but the number issued was nothing like adequate to supply the deficiences. For use in Camp, each man was supplied with a pair of Japanese wooden clogs.

Regarding hygiene and sanitation:
Personal hygiene- A small issue of soap was made to each man about once a month, this was distributed either in the form of bar soap or powder. Men who were performing particularly dirty work in the factory were allowed a little extra soap powder by the Factory authorities for the purpose of cleaning their hands, a regular issue of tooth powder was made. The bathing facilities at the camp were very good. Each man received a hot bath once a week, and in the summer in addition to the weekly hot bath each man was allowed a cold shower in the evening. The bathroom was spacious, and contained one large bath (communal) and about 12 showers. Wash basins, supplied with cold running water, were attached to the barrack room, and facilities for drying and airing clothing were totally inadequate. Requests were repeatedly made for increased facilities for airing blankets, but without avail. In the summer time and to a less extent during the winter, the Camp was grossly infected with fleas. These interfered with the mens' sleep to a very great extent. During the night, the latrines, where at that time the only light was available, was full of men stripped, picking the fleas off their night clothes. A small amount of insecticide powder was supplied time to time, but the effect of this appeared only to irritate the fleas and make them more lively. I asked for chemical sprays but these were not allowed. The latrines were situated immediately adjacent to the Barracks rooms. Each consisted of a large concrete tank, defecation was performed through a hole in the wooden floor of separate small cubicles. These tanks were periodically emptied by a man who came with a bullock cart loaded with wooden tubs.

The stench from these tanks was unbearable throughout the summer, during which period the camp became infected with large flies which bred in the septic tank. During an earthquake the fluid in the tanks used to spill over in large quantities flooding into the Barrack room.

Medical supplies were issued from three sources:
1. The Japanese Army; 2. The Factory; 3. The Red Cross. Certain things were in reasonable supply, but the number of drugs which were required were not obtainable. Japanese medicines are of a very inferior quality and strength. The first consignment of American medicines was received in April, 1944. This included a fairly large consignment of multiple vitamin preparations, and lasted about four or five months, but had to be used sparingly because we did not know when to expect the next lot. The second consignment was received in January, 1945, and consisted of five large boxers of drugs of all descriptions. The administration of the Red Cross supplies was not left entirely in my hands. Treatment was often given against my wishes by the Japanese medical orderly, and quantities of Red Cross medicines contunually disappeared from the stock.

Owing to the distance of Nagoya from the Prisoner of War Camp Hospital which had been set up by the Japanese in Osaka, it was never possible to transfer any serious cases. The first Japanese orderly, Sgt. Haiashi, was cooperative and did his best to meet our requirements. On one occasion he arranged for us to have the use of the small operating theatre [sic] at the factory, where we were able to perform two appendicetomy [sic] operations, and others of a more minor nature. After this man's departure it was impossible to get anything done. I can remember one particular patient, his name was John Erskine Yule Walker, a Lance Corporal in the Hong Kong Volunteer Defense Corps [HKVD]. This man suffered for several months from a sub-acute intestinal obstruction. He was seen by the Japanese civilian doctor employed at the factory and also by Nosu Chewi, the Japanese Military medical officer in medical charge of the Osaka Prisoner of War Camps. These two doctors agreed that an operation was very necessary, but no facilities were provided. The patient was eventually evacuated in an American Army plane. Generally speaking we did not receive either the assistance or the cooperation which we ought to have done in the hospital cases, the obstruction was generally placed in our way by the Camp Commander, although some of the Japanese medical orderlies tried to do their best for us, particularly Sgt. Haiashi.

Sgt. Haiashi's successor was Sgt. YAMANAKA. He was sent to the Camp with the express purpose of reducing the sick figures, and increasing the working party strength. His method of doing this was to periodically parade all the sick men and pick out at random individuals for work in the factory. On one occasion he used violence to me as a result of a misunderstanding in the sending of a sick man to the factory. He was particularly detested by the British prisoners. He had no medical qualifications for making his decisions.

About 100 pairs of boots and 300 blankets, and sufficient pyjamas to issue one pair per man were received in February, 1944. In April, 1944 each man received one American Red Cross parcel. In addition to the food parcels we received a small supply of toilet articles, e.g., soap, razor blades, toilet paper, etc. The next Red Cross supplies arrived in November, 1944 and the first distribution was made at Christmas. Altogether each man received three parcels, a number of parcels were distributed to the sick and a further number were used in the cookhouse. From this batch of parcels, which numbered about 1950, approximately 20 were unaccounted for. From investigations made at the time, I am of the opinion that these were used by the Japanese. I should say that the Japanese responsible was probably Cpl. Meesno, as he was the Camp Quartermaster, and had access to the Store where the parcels were kept, but I have no proof of this.

During air raids which were frequent and heavy, all men working in the factory were sent back to camp. By the time the men reached the local railway station the bombers were usually overhead. The men had to march up the road for about two miles. I drew the attention of the Camp Commandant to the risk of such a large body of men in Japanese uniform being observed from the air, but this procedure continued to be followed. On one occasions just after the men had entered the camp, one bomber flew low and dropped a stick of bombs across the Camp. One Japanese was killed and one prisoner slightly injured, Extensive damage was done to the camp buildings, but fortunately all bombs landed outside the boundaries of the camp. During the autumn of 1944 when air raids became more frequent, the construction of the trench shelters within the barrack room was commenced.

Corporal punishment is a standard method of dealing with delinquents in the Japanese Forces. For minor offences, this usually takes the form of face slapping. This method of punishment was frequently adopted toward the prisoners, and face slapping and minor beatings up was a common everyday occurrence. I remember one particular incident, and that was concerning a Portuguese civilian named A.F. Joanilho, who had been attached to the Hong Kong Draft. This man committed some minor offence whilst at work at the factory, and he was punished by being made to stand close to a hot furnace. As a result of this he received very severe burns to the front of both legs. The Gunsuko who ordered this punishment and saw that it was carried out was nicknamed "Speedo". [
ITO, Jirokichi] I do not remember his proper name, but he is indicated on the photograph). I took this matter up with the Camp Commandant, but nothing was done about it, and he was under care medically for several weeks.

There was another incident at this Camp, but I was not a witness, having left the Camp prior to it occurring, and learned about it later. This was concerning an American prisoner, whose name I do not recall. [DOYLE W. WAGGONER, U.S.N.] This man broke out of the Barrack Room one night in order to steal food from the cookhouse. He hid in the cookhouse on a shelf in the back of some vegetables, and on the following day could not be found. All the men were confined to Barracks whilst search parties went out to look for him. When eventually the cookhouse staff were allowed to go into the cookhouse to prepare a meal, one of the men found him. He had tried to commit suicide by cutting himself with a knife, but unsuccessfully. The Japanese charged him with attempting to escape, and he was sentenced to 30 days in solitary confinement on a diet of water and half a cup of rice a day. In spite of the efforts of the American doctor - Dr. Elack Schultz, [1st Lt, Med Corps, 27th Bomb Gp (L) 19th Bomb Sqn] this diet was not increased, and the man died of starvation after 21 days. Dr. Schultz lives at 1105 Boynton Ave, Bronx, New York.

I had to treat many cases of scalp wounds amongst the prisoners due to being struck on the head by stickmen.

On a number of occasions the Japanese forced the British N.C.O's to strike other ranks. Strong representations were made to the Camp Commandant on this matter and it was explained that this might lead to Court Martial of the N.C.O. after the war. But, as usual, nothing was done about it.

On the whole, the civilians at the factory treated the prisoners well. Many of them used to bring small parcels of food such as rice or beans which they gave to individual prisoners whom they considered working well.

Journeys by sea were indescribably bad. The ships were grossly overcrowded, and no opportunity was allowed for exercise, with the exception of about ten minutes drill whenever the ship put into a port. The sanitary arrangements were inadequate, and there was a continual queue the whole day long for the latrines. In a journey from Singapore to Japan lasting 30 days, we were only allowed two wash-downs with a sea hose, and one wash in fresh water. For this, one busket was provided for five men.

Railway journeys from camp to camp were on the whole quite good though overcrowded.

I produce a copy of Camp Regulations. I also produce a copy of the Rules and Regulations of the Osaka Prisoners of War Camps [scans available] This was applicable to Nagoya which formed a sub-camp of the Osaka Administrative district.

In May and in July, 1944, the camp was visited by representative of the International Red Cross. A very special show was, of course, put on for their benefit. This included the temporary stocking of the canteen, which hitherto been empty. A lorry arrived laden with goods which included canned milk, bottled beer, biscuits, and tinned fruit. With in ten minutes of the departure of the visiting party the lorry returned and took all the supplies away.

A nominal roll of the camp is appended. I chose a number where I know their regiments:
Pte. Bright, R.E. RAMC
Staff Sgt. Webb, J RAMC (Not on Nominal Roll)
Leading Sick B.A. Shipsides, K. RN
W.O. Ashman, C.R. Army Educational Corps
Colous Sgt. Bayly, T. Middlesex Regt.
W.O Coastes, W.H.E. Hong Kong RNVR c/o British American Tobacco (China) Ltd.
 BSM Oswald, J.L.C. Hong Kong Vol Defence Corps
Pte. Samuel, P.E.H.  do -Son of Viscount Samuel

I produced a photograph which I obtained from one of the Japanese, and their names are shown on the reverse side of the photograph. The date of the photograph was about February, 1944.

Shown on the photograph is No.1 Hara. Assistant Quartermaster. This man was friendly and gave me assistance in many respects. He gave me information before every organized camp search, and also informed me just before each visit by the Red Cross Representatives. We were thus able to get organized and to formulate any complaints which we might wish to make.

Camp Regulations. I produce a copy thereof.

The documents referred to in this affidavit, copies produced as follows:
Laws governing Prisoners of War
Rules and Regulations of Osaka Prisoners of War Camp.
Medical Report on the Health of Prisoners of War.
-do- Appendix 1.
-do- Appendix 2.

I left this Prisoner of War Camp on the 10th of May, 1945, being transferred to Toyama Prisoner of War Camp, Toyama, Japan. [ Nagoya #8 Tateyama]

/S/ W. Norman Riley

SWORN at Bradford in the County of York this 23rd day of July, 1946.
/S/ Annie Pitts
Justice of the Peace acting in and for
the City of Bradford