Here is a gripping article that appeared in the September, 1946 issue of the U.K. magazine The Wide World (The Magazine for Men). The Wide World was an odd combination of pulp and slick. It was printed on much better paper than the pulps and contained mainly true to life adventure articles and stories (travel, hunting, exploration, war, law enforcement, sports, etc.). It was slightly smaller than pulps in size–both height, width and overall thickness yet had wonderful eye-catching covers that would look good on any adventure fiction pulp. The magazine ran from 1898 to the end 1965.
This article was written by Leslie J. Smith who was one of three Englishmen serving with the 5th Regiment of the Foreign Legion in Indochina. Smith provides a first hand account of the fighting between the Japanese occupation forces and the isolated French garrisons in early 1945. He served in the 3rd Battalion of the 5th Regiment during that unit’s epic rear guard action and forced march on the tails of the French evacuation of personnel into China. As Smith points out, this was a little known battlefield of WWII yet it involved incredible sacrifice and epic resistance to overwhelming odds.