..I saw how the whole audience was coming under his spell as they were listening. ... when he finished they had acquired new life, new animation, new excitement….
Bose kept working with furious pace and determination to strengthen the Azad Hind Fauz, Azad Hind Radio - his only medium of contact with India his beloved yet bedeviled motherland, and ever so relentlessly in the diplomatic front to secure a tripartite declaration of support from Germany, Japan and Italy. He saw Mussolini. He frequented between the German foreign office and Japanese mission. He saw Hitler on 26th May 1942 to plead the urgency of his case. At the time Hitler was a little hesitant as his forces were advancing towards Leningrad and did not, understandably, want to take on additional burden right then. The German Chancellor suggested that the time was not right then and wanted to know exactly what kind of 'political concept' Bose had in mind. Netaji was extremely annoyed at this last comment and replied through the interpreter, Von Trott - chief of the Special India Office:
Tell his Excellency that I have been in politics all my life and that I don't need advice from any side.
A remark about Hitler very few would be brave enough to make in the
Spring of 1942 - when he was at the Zennith of his success and glory! But we are describing here a man of steel - he had no fear! Meanwhile, following the attack of Pearl Harbour on 7th of December 1941 Japanese forces made significant naval and army inroads in the East and South East. They virtually controlled everything from Sea of Japan to Bay of Bengal. Cities after cities fell under the Japanese forces by May 1942. Hong Kong, Singapore, Manila, Penang and Rangoon. The Japanese Government, persuaded by another fearless Bengali revolutionary, Rash Behari Bose, who was in exile in Tokyo for a considerable length of time and married a Japanese girl, Tosshiko Soma, declared its whole-hearted support for Indian revolutionaries in their fight against the British Raj. Prime Minister General Tojo announced:
It is a golden opportunity for India having, as it does, several thousand years of history and splendid cultural tradition, to rid herself of the ruthless despotism of Britain and participate in the construction of the Great East Asia Co-prosperity Sphere.
Japan expects that India will attain her proper status as India for the Indians...
Mussolini, who sent separate communication to Hitler on the subject, advised Bose to form a government in exile. But Germany considered the proposition a little premature. The above announcement from Japan, however, gave Netaji immense encouragement. Now convinced that he could play a much more active role on the soil of Asia - rather than agonising for ever staying in Berlin. Time was running out. He must be where the centre of action was. So, he decided to transfer to the East and asked for Axis help. The security risk of Bose's transfer