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Other titles:BRITISH ARMY OPERATIONS IN SOUTH EAST ASIA DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR [Allocated Series Title]
Summary: In Bangkok, capital of Siam (Thailand) the SS Pangan arrives carrying a cargo of 21,240-yard consignment of Indian cloth, the first to reach Bangkok since the end of the war.
Description: A bale of cloth is swung towards a waiting lorry and is handled by interned Japanese labourers. The tailboard of the lorry is fastened. Thai officials check the bales. A bale is hoisted from the hold. A bale marked 'Textiles'. Lorries driving away. Onboard the Pangan the Thai Prime Minister, Pridi Phanomyong (Pridi Banomyong) addresses the ship's crew and congratulates them on delivering the cargo. The material is inspected by Mr Cairn (American Commercial Attache), Mr Charles Yost (American Charge d'Affaires), Phanomyong, and Mr Geoffrey Harington Thompson (British Legation Minister). Two more bales hoisted out and received by Japanese labourers. Alternative angle. Close-up of a bale with 'The Controller Clothing Punjab'.
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 1
Footage: 200 ft; Running time: 3 mins
Notes: The vessel may be the HTMS Pangan, a 1927 Japanese-built transport of the Royal Thai Navy.
During the war Pridi Phanomyong had been Regent and a leader of the Seri Thai, the Free Thai Movement, and cooperated with Allied intelligence.
The dopesheet for this film notes that this cloth was paid for by British authorities and intended for distribution to Thai rice farmers. The economic disruption of the war interrupted supplies of both cloth and foodstuffs, which meant by this period much of the population of south-east Asia was living hungry and in rags.