Today at The Independent, Andrew Buncombe writes:
One evening a couple of weeks ago, beneath a cavernous sky, I stood on the edge of a 7,000ft airstrip in the Philippines peering into the darkness.
The airfield at Guiuan, built by American forces in World War II as part of General Douglas MacArthur’s operation to drive the Japanese from the Philippines, was now being used by US troops to land emergency supplies for the town devastated by Typhoon Haiyan and to evacuate the injured and sick.
The Americans overseeing the supply drops were clearly tickled by the idea of history retracing itself more than six decades on. But it was something that an aid official had said a couple of days earlier that had me entranced; a few years after the war’s conclusion, the official said, the same airstrip had been used for a dramatic evacuation of White Russian refugees, fleeing the Communist forces of Mao Zedong.