Double Victory: Chinese Canadians in the Second World War
Chinese Canadian veterans describe their experiences in the Second World War, fighting the Axis in Europe and the Pacific, and advancing civil rights at home.
2023 marks the 78th anniversary of V-J Day (Victory against Japan Day). Among the Canadian soldiers that fought against the Japanese were those of Chinese descent.
The discrimination that Chinese Canadians faced throughout their hard work on critical infrastructure projects, like the transcontinental railway, culminated in the 1923 Chinese Exclusion Act, when new immigrants from China were banned from entering Canada. This endured until the Second World War, when Chinese Canadians were called on to fight in the European and Pacific theatres of war.
From Force 136, run by the British Office of Strategic Services, to the Women’s Army Corps, Chinese Canadians played a critical role in fighting the German and Japanese armies. Their service and bravery during the war helped advance civil rights for Chinese Canadians in the postwar era.
This video was produced by the Memory Project, a program of Historica Canada. For more stories of service, visit the Memory Project Archive, now available on The Canadian Encyclopedia!
Illustrations by Jessie Durham
Featuring testimonies from:
Herbert Thomas Aquinas Lim
Mary Ko Bong
Music c/o Audio Network: OCPMJYNV5NJLB2FV