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Quiz about The Fall of Singapore 1942
Quiz about The Fall of Singapore 1942

The Fall of Singapore (1942) Trivia Quiz


The great island fortress, impregnable Singapore, the Gibraltar of Eastern Asia. This quiz looks at how Singapore fell to the Japanese, an event that perhaps triggered a rise in nationalism throughout the colonies, long after the last shot was fired.

A multiple-choice quiz by bertho. Estimated time: 4 mins.
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Author
bertho
Time
4 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
129,692
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
7 / 10
Plays
2201
Awards
Top 20% Quiz
Last 3 plays: Guest 98 (8/10), Guest 120 (5/10), Guest 69 (5/10).
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Question 1 of 10
1. Which of these best describes the geographical location of Singapore? Hint


Question 2 of 10
2. The Japanese had planned the invasion of Malaya for over a year. Why was Malaya an important objective to them? Hint


Question 3 of 10
3. British Command had concluded that Singapore would be attacked, and could only be attacked from the sea and air.


Question 4 of 10
4. The British officers had preconceived opinions of what the Japanese soldier was like. Which best describes this opinion? Hint


Question 5 of 10
5. The Japanese landed in Malaya and Thailand on the 8th December 1941. How long was it before they met the final defences at Singapore, a distance of over 550 miles from their landing sites? Hint


Question 6 of 10
6. The troops that were cut off during the allies' full retreat were captured and sent to their units in Singapore after the island fell.


Question 7 of 10
7. A British battleship and a battlecruiser were dispatched to the eastern coast of Malaya to engage the invasion force. They were to be the first British capital ships sunk by aircraft on the high seas, and only a few days after Pearl Harbour. What were their names? Hint


Question 8 of 10
8. With the air defence wiped out, the navy out of action and the causeway blown up, allied troops had to make a final stand on the island of Singapore. General Percival was blamed for what poor strategy in the defence of the island? Hint


Question 9 of 10
9. If the British had of continued the fight in Singapore in 'street fighting', they would have beaten the Japanese forces as they were out of ammunition, food and fuel.


Question 10 of 10
10. 100,000 troops were now "guests of the Empire of Japan" and placed in a now infamous POW camp. What was the name of this camp? Hint



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Most Recent Scores
Apr 13 2024 : Guest 98: 8/10
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quiz
Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. Which of these best describes the geographical location of Singapore?

Answer: Off the southern tip of the Malaysian Peninsula

Singapore is separated from Malaysia by the very narrow Straits of Johor. The straits are only about a mile wide but still a formidable obstacle to even the most determined enemy.
2. The Japanese had planned the invasion of Malaya for over a year. Why was Malaya an important objective to them?

Answer: Natural resources of tin and rubber

In 1939, Malaya produced most of the world's tin. This was exported mostly to the USA. Malaya also grew around 30% of the world's rubber. The Japanese could get all the tin they needed and deny the USA this valuable wartime resource.
3. British Command had concluded that Singapore would be attacked, and could only be attacked from the sea and air.

Answer: True

Most of the large artillery weapons were pointing to sea in readiness for a seaborne attack. The gun placements and long trajectory AP ammunition where useless to aid the infantry in the defence from the main Japanese thrust. British planners could not conceive the island could be attacked in this way. The rest lies in the history books.
4. The British officers had preconceived opinions of what the Japanese soldier was like. Which best describes this opinion?

Answer: Poor fighters with poor eyesight

The Brits actually knew very little about who they where up against. Many of the 65,000 Japanese troops had been fighting in Manchuria, China and were battle hardened. They also had excellent tactical command. Two quotes best some up the attitude of the allies.

This from a junior officer: "I do hope we are not getting too strong in Malaya because if so the Japanese may never attempt a landing." Once the Japanese had landed in Malaya, Singapore's governor, Sir Shenton Thomas said, "Well, I suppose you'll shove the little men off." It's important to remember that there was a complete air of complacency. Singapore was a fortress and no one would dare front the British forces there. All this is in stark contrast to earlier insights.

In 1907, Richard (later Lord) Haldane, the then British Secretary of State for War, addressing Oxford undergraduates had urged his audience to emulate the Japanese officer corps, whose 'selfless devotion to duty exceeds even that of the German officer corps'.
5. The Japanese landed in Malaya and Thailand on the 8th December 1941. How long was it before they met the final defences at Singapore, a distance of over 550 miles from their landing sites?

Answer: 2 months

The attack on Singapore started on the 9th February 1942. The Japanese had made their way through 550 miles of jungle and mangrove on stolen bicycles, an incredible feat. The British army was in full retreat out of Malaya and blew up the causeway linking Singapore to the mainland on January 31, 1942. The Germans had their 'blitzkrieg' but this was lightning war on a new scale!
6. The troops that were cut off during the allies' full retreat were captured and sent to their units in Singapore after the island fell.

Answer: False

The ruthless Japanese were ordered to take no prisoners. A pamphlet issued to troops said "When you encounter the enemy after landing, think of yourself as an avenger coming face to face at last with his father's murderer. Here is a man whose death will lighten your heart." The allies were slaughtered, some in very cruel fashion. Captured Australian troops were actually burnt alive with petrol.
7. A British battleship and a battlecruiser were dispatched to the eastern coast of Malaya to engage the invasion force. They were to be the first British capital ships sunk by aircraft on the high seas, and only a few days after Pearl Harbour. What were their names?

Answer: HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse

Incredibly, and in complete contradiction to the Japanese land forces with their atrocities, Japanese pilots allowed the accompanying destroyers to tie up on their sinking capital ships and take off survivors without further attacks. It is claimed that many pilots flew back to the sight of the battle and dropped two wreaths, one for the lost Japanese airmen and one for respect to the lost sailors. HMS Prince of Wales had been involved in a skirmish with the famous Bismarck in early 1941.
8. With the air defence wiped out, the navy out of action and the causeway blown up, allied troops had to make a final stand on the island of Singapore. General Percival was blamed for what poor strategy in the defence of the island?

Answer: Spreading his troops out too far

General Percival spread his men across a 70-mile line when ultimately the thrust came in only two areas. There was no reserve available to plug the gaps in the line and the Japanese crossed with minimal resistance. Many have argued it would have made little difference in the outcome, only delayed the result. Percival was made a scapegoat.
9. If the British had of continued the fight in Singapore in 'street fighting', they would have beaten the Japanese forces as they were out of ammunition, food and fuel.

Answer: True

General Yamashita: "My attack on Singapore was a bluff. A bluff that worked. I knew if I had to fight long for Singapore I would be beaten. That is why surrender had to be at once. I was very frightened all the time the British would discover my numerical weakness and lack of supplies and force me into disastrous street fighting."
10. 100,000 troops were now "guests of the Empire of Japan" and placed in a now infamous POW camp. What was the name of this camp?

Answer: Changi

The fall of Singapore in only 7 days shocked the world. It happened so quickly and demolished all myths about the Japanese soldier. They were ruthless, efficient and working under superb military command (in a tactical sense). It was a demoralising blow to the allied forces on an unprecedented scale and opened a pathway of Islands to the Australian mainland.

The impossible happened, and Churchill's ability to lead was questioned - briefly.
Source: Author bertho

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor bloomsby before going online.
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