logo

Singapore History: Reflections at Bukit Chandu

Museums and Galleries

Published on 07 Nov 2018

by WorldRoamer® Travel Team

Singapore History: Reflections at Bukit Chandu

Museums and Galleries

Published on 07 Nov 2018

by WorldRoamer® Travel Team

If you are interested in Singapore's History, go to Reflections at Bukit Chandu. Learn about the past and pay tribute to the heroes who defended Singapore.

“War has no glory, only what’s bitterly unkind”, a quote by Edwin Thumboo, is the epitome of the Bukit Chandu War Memorial. As I entered the grounds of the museum, I couldn’t help but think of what went down in history on the very site that I was standing on. I wasn’t sure if I was overthinking, but with the museum being isolated on top of a hill, there was an eerie atmosphere that filled the place. The scenes of the unfortunate events that occurred on this hill became clearer as I went through the galleries, listened to recollections and watched video clips of the Bukit Chandu battle.

Reflections at Bukit Chandu Article Photo WR 1 Resized Source: WorldRoamer®

Reflections at Bukit Chandu Article Photo WR 2 Resized Source: WorldRoamer®

On 14th February 1942, one of the fiercest battles took place in Singapore’s history, where 1,400 brave soldiers from the Askar Melayu (known as the Malay Regiment), led by Lieutenant Adnan Saidi, commander of the Malay Regiment, fought against the 13,000-strong Japanese army. Outnumbered and out of ammunition, Lieutenant Adnan Saidi remained undeterred and urged his comrades to fight till the last man standing. The Malay Regiment soldiers then put bayonets on their rifles and charged towards the enemy, with a unanimous fighting spirit for honour and glory.

Reflections at Bukit Chandu Article Photo WR 3 Resized Source: WorldRoamer®

Eventually, the inevitable happened and the remaining Malay Regiment soldiers were captured by the Japanese. They were told to remove their uniforms and ranks to surrender but neither soldier conceded defeat. Furious at the iron-willed soldiers, the Japanese hung them upside down from a tree and stabbed the soldiers to their deaths.

As I was watched the animation film re-enact the events that unfolded on Bukit Chandu, I couldn’t help but wonder what went through the minds of those men who left their loved ones behind to defend their country. Yet at the same time, I had immense respect for the exemplary heroism of those soldiers. The only remains left of their existence are memories that their families cherish and objects they once used, such as an army-issued tin mug, which are vividly kept alive through displays in the museum. Although their bodies were never found, their legacy lives on.

Reflections at Bukit Chandu Article Photo WR 4 Resized Source: WorldRoamer®

The museum depicted the despair, courage and grit of the Malay Regiment soldiers. This space serves as a reminder of the sacrifices made by the soldiers that fought in World War II, in hopes that the current and future generation will come to understand and appreciate the freedom we have today. After my trip to the Bukit Chandu War Memorial, my gratitude grew even stronger towards the fallen soldiers who fought till the very end for our country’s freedom, as well as towards the men and women serving our nation today.

Reflections at Bukit Chandu Article Photo WR 5 Resized Source: WorldRoamer®

Note: Reflections at Bukit Chandu is temporarily closed due to renovation till 2021. Please check before visiting.

About WorldRoamer®
WorldRoamer® believes that booking hotel experience should be personal and transparent, and aims to be the best hotel booking website and app for all roamers.

Share on