The extraordinary engineering feat of the Thai-Burma Railway, or the Line as it is often called, was built with a slave labour force. A mixture of Australian, Asian, British, Dutch and American men built 688 bridges-eight made of steel and concrete-viaducts, cuttings, embankments and kilometres and kilometres of railway track through thick malarial jungle. The men of the Line died of starvation, torture and disease at the hands of the Japanese Imperial Army - here are their stories.Construction of the 415 kilometres of railway connecting Bampong in Thailand to Thanzanbuyat in Burma commenced in June 1942, finally joining up at Konkoita on 16 October 1943. An allied POW workforce of 61,700 men and an estimated native contingent of 250,000 workers laboured on the Line. One of the Japanese commanders at the time said, famously, 'many men must die' - and they did. "The Men of the Line" traces the working camps along the Line and is a potent mix of personal experience, history and illustration. "The Men of the Line" brings to life the horror, the humour and the camaraderie of these men's lives, in their own words.
For many of the men this may be their last, and for some their first, opportunity to put their stories on record.