On This Day

Mandalay Came Under Heavy Attack from the Air 77 Years Ago Today

By Wei Yan Aung 3 April 2019

On this day 77 years ago, around 80 Japanese aircraft bombed and strafed sites housing British troops in Mandalay. The aerial assault, which followed a smaller attack, targeted residential areas and killed dozens of civilians.

At the time, many people who had fled the Japanese bombing of Yangon and other towns were taking shelter in Mandalay. Hundreds of people died of cholera during the month-long aerial campaign.

Japanese forces finally seized control of Mandalay on May 1, 1942, and many facilities including hospitals, schools, markets, residential wards, pagodas and temples, railway stations and power plants were reduced to ash. Japanese forces then marched into towns in northern Myanmar. Japan ruled Mandalay from 1942 to 1945.