- Year Book Australia,
After Great Britain declared war on Germany on 3 September , Australia raised a Probably the first Australian casualties after the declaration of war on 3 . World War II, also called Second World War, conflict that involved I. The 40,,–50,, deaths incurred in World War II make it . British and other Allied troops wading through the water to board Cowra, New South Wales, Australia 20th-century international relations: World War II, – World War II was the deadliest military conflict in history. An estimated total million Netherlands 25,; France 14,; Britain 13,; British Colonies 11,; US 10,; Australia 8, E. Bruce Reynolds, "Aftermath of Alliance : The Wartime Legacy in Thai-Japanese Relations", Journal of Southeast Asian.
A pilot and his observer were killed in a flying accident while ferrying a Wirraway to Darwin, where 12 Squadron RAAF was based for coastal patrol missions.Battle for New Guinea - 1942-1945 - Australian & American Soldiers in Action - WW2 Documentary Film
Unfortunately the arrival of the Wirraways was marred by a fatal accident. Three air searches were carried out. The Blenheim crashed near Kiel, Germany.
Flying Officer Sadler, who was serving in the RAF, was the pilot of a Handley Page Hampden bomber, serial L, part of a formation of five aircraft on a bombing mission on 29 September All five aircraft were intercepted and shot down between Heligoland and Wangerooge in Germany. Sadler, who has no known grave, is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial in England. Many members of their families would have been able to remember the horrors of the First World War. Australian defence and foreign policy since the end of the First World War had relied on British support in the event of attack.
Military history of Australia during World War II
Singapore, the largest Royal Navy base in Asia, was to provide a barrier for Australia and it was expected that Britain would provide forces to assist Australia against any Japanese aggression. However, as the war developed in the Northern Hemisphere, it became clear that the British would have to concentrate their forces there.
Blamey had his supporters in the army, but there were also many who had not supported his appointment. In Novemberthe government announced that the 6th Division would be sent overseas when their training had reached a certain standard of proficiency. Training abroad in terrain more European or North African would follow so that the 6th Division would hone their skills in a similar environment to one they would be fighting in.
When Britain announced that they were concerned for the safety of the Suez Canal, it seemed logical that the 6th Division should be sent to Egypt to act as a deterrent to Italy.
The Second World War
From Egypt, they could transfer to France it required. The first troops left for what was then Palestine in January and over the next few months more brigades from the 6th Division followed. The rapid collapse of France in the spring of ensured that the 6th Division would not be transferring to Europe. The European situation also led to the Australian government forming three new divisions the 7th, 8th and 9th Divisions.
Many in Australia simply assumed that the Australians would soon be involved in fighting major battles. After the Dunkirk evacuation, the Australian government started to re-focus on Australia itself. Many politicians rightly believed that the Axis victory in Europe would stimulate further Japanese aggression in the Far East and that Australia itself might be threatened. With so many of its army abroad, many felt that this would also stimulate Japanese aggression.
It was hoped that such a gesture would make it clear to the Japanese that any action by them would be met with an aggressive reaction. No such naval force was sent to Singapore. Another idea to stop Japanese aggression was to greatly increase the military power the Australians had in Malaya. This would require troops from the 6th Division to be removed from the Middle East and sent to the Far East. However, at this time, Italy was expanding aggressively in the Mediterranean region and all the men from the 6th Division were needed where they were based.
In Augustthe Australian government received an assurance from Winston Churchill that any threat to Australia or New Zealand would result in the Mediterranean Fleet being sent to the Far East immediately. They met in Singapore.
They all agreed that the defence of Malaya was vital if any Japanese aggression was to be halted. The Australians wanted the Indian Army to take the responsibility for defending Malaya while the Australians would provide a naval force for the region. It became obvious to many that Singapore had the potential to be an Achilles heel for the Allies.
It would be an obvious target for the Japanese but its power had been built around the navy and not land and air defences. In lateits vulnerability to a land attack was a major fear for many, even if few thought that the Japanese could come down the Malayan Peninsula.
In Decemberan Australian brigade was sent to Malaya. The plan was that an Indian brigade should replace it in May They also fought in the Greek campaign and their stand at Thermopylae allowed a relatively successful Allied evacuation to take place.
Australia at War - History Learning Site
The Australian 7th Division successfully occupied Vichy Syria. These recommended that as many personnel as possible should be sent back to Japan. These cables convinced many in the Australian government that an attack in the Far East was imminent.
Clashes also occurred with senior British commanders in Singapore. Even Churchill referred to Singapore as a fortress — much to the concern of military figures in Australia who held the opposite viewpoint. To complicate matters more, America stated that though the loss of Singapore would be unfortunate, it would not be a vital loss.
It was inthat relations between Canberra and London became strained. On June 10th,Menzies reported to his government after meeting with Churchill:
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