2-7 R.I. and Other Gains

On 12th April 25 men arrived from the depot Pantsertroepen KNIL in Batavia to Semarang where they formed the Semarang Eskadron Vechtwagens (Vew 3). Although it was not before on 15th May that it was up to full strength. They too were former POW for the most parts from Siam. They took over the Stewart tanks from the British-Indians. It is unbelievable how much there have been done with those tanks and how they had been stopped with different kind of oils and grease! It was also necessary. Not alone did they find things inside, which showed that humans had not seen parts of it since El Alamein. But also things, which have nothing to do in a motor and could, make big harm to it if they were not found. There was no work for these monsters in the area of Semarang. Since as a kind of faith, from higher up it was forbidden to use these heavy weapons. But their time would come too.

A very important day was 20th April when the Brigade was pleased with the arrival of a whole Battalion (2-7) from Amsterdam also consisting of OVW from the B.S. in the Capital. The Battalion was formed on 3rd October 1945. On 17th February it was sent to England and on 25th March it was sent to India. They were known as the singing Battalion and as such could be expect the ”veterans” to look on them as youngsters. But…… 5 days after their (without Malacca, without acclimation) arrival they were already at the bandjircanal and participating in patrols with other Battalion. And on 18th May they participated in a bigger operation. Their enthusiastic Commander Major H. H. C. Vos was already so seriously wounded on 31st July that he had to be evacuated back to the Netherlands. He was followed by Lieutenant-Colonel KNIL A. F. J. Brummer who was already known by the OVW’s from Malacca were he had been an advisor. The 7th knew how to win a place in the Brigade.


During the month of April the English left with their Brigade Commander as the last on 16th May. Because of this decrease of troops the up building of troops was given free. Also the staff could leave its narrow housing at Makamdowo and take over the Headquarter from The English at Dr. de Vogelweg. In the neighbourhood the support duties were established, 2-6 R.I. got the security for the N.I.S. at Wilhelminaplein. The Pegasus club of the Paratroopers was baptised the Tiger club and used as cantina for the garrison. Semarang ended up standing in the sign of the T-Brigade in this period, which in this period also made the sign of the Tiger. At the first place it was only the Tiger Villa in Bodjong, which used the name. But slowly it ended up being used by the whole Brigade. It was not only a name but also a sign on the courage and the offensive power from every individual man.



The Lux Theatre




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5 Pantsertroepen means calvary
6 Eskadron Vechtwagens mean Squadron Armoured Vehicles

Part 6

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