The recent release of the full text of Major-General CM. Maltby’s Official Dispatch as the General Officer Commanding at Hong Kong (Public Record Office WO 106/240113) prompted British and Canadian newspapers to run sensational stories quoting Maltby’s criticisms of the discipline and battlefield performance of the Canadian battalions. Maltby’s statements, which were censored when the Dispatch was initially released, require a detailed examination and will be discussed in a future issue of CMH. In addition, the Spring 1994 issue will carry an article by Paul Dickson on “Crerar and the Decision to Garrison Hong Kong.” For the present we are publishing an exchange of correspondence, dated January 1948, between Lieutenant-Colonel G.W.L. Nicholson, then Deputy Director of the Army Historical Section, and Brigadier John H. Price who was second-in-command of the Royal Rifles of Canada in Hong Kong. Brigadier Price was asked to comment, not on the censored Dispatch, but on extracts from a draft report prepared by the Historical Section of the British Cabinet Office. This report contained the substance of the most serious charges Maltby made about the conduct of the Royal Rifles. For the information of the reader, other officers mentioned in the exchange include Brigadier C. Wallis, Indian Army, commander of the East Brigade (to which the Royal Rifles belonged), Lieutenant-Colonel W.J. Home, commander of the Royal Rifles, Lieutenant-Colonel J.L.R. Sutcliffe, Commanding Officer, Winnipeg Grenadiers, Brigadier J.K. Lawson, Commanding Officer, “C” Force (as the Canadian contingent was known) and Colonel P. Hennessy, Lawson’s second-in-command.
Nicholson, G.W.L. and Price, John H.
"The Controversy over Maltby’s Hong Kong Dispatch,"
Canadian Military History:
2, Article 15.
Available at: http://scholars.wlu.ca/cmh/vol2/iss2/15