Saturday, July 16, 2011


Malesso' is the unfortunate scene of not one - but two - massacres at the hands of the Japanese.  Yesterday, sixteen people of Malesso' were killed sixty-seven years ago.  They were the village elite.  Today, thirty men of Malesso' were killed in a different location in the village.

On July 16, the Japanese rounded up the most physically powerful men of Malesso'.  The civic leaders and those with American ties were not the only threat to the Japanese; these big, powerful men could also prove a worthy adversary should they rise up against the Japanese.  The thirty men were taken to the hills of the northern side of Malesso', behind the present-day cemetery - a place called Fåha.  They were made to stand in an open trench, where they were open and visible targets for Japanese bullets.   No one survived.

The Memorial to the Victims of the Tinta and Fåha Massacres
San Dimas Church, Malesso'

At the Memorial Mass on July 16, 2011 for the Tinta and Fåha Massacres, chairs were marked with the names of the victims, so that a family member could sit and represent them at the ceremonies after Mass in front of the Memorial.
En Español

El pobre pueblo de Merizo es el sitio de no sólo una matanza, sino dos matanzas, hechas por las manos de los japoneses.  En el día 16 de julio de 1944, treinta varones, los hombres mas fuertes del pueblo, fueron fusilados en una zanja en el lugar llamado Fåha.  Ninguno de los treinta salieron con vida.

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