An Awkward Truth: The bombing of Darwin, February 1942 by Peter Grose

By Peter Grose

Darwin used to be a conflict Australia could fairly fail to remember. but the japanese assault on 19 February 1942 was once the 1st wartime attack on Australian soil. the japanese struck with an identical carrier-borne strength that devastated Pearl Harbor merely ten weeks previous. there has been a distinction. extra bombs fell on Darwin, extra civilians have been killed, and extra ships have been sunk.

The raid ended in the worst dying toll from any occasion in Australia. The attackers bombed and strafed 3 hospitals, flattened retailers, workplaces and the police barracks, shattered the submit place of work and communications centre, wrecked executive apartment, and left the harbour and airfields burning and ruined. the folk of Darwin deserted their city, leaving it to looters, a couple of anti-aircraft batteries and a handful of dogged defenders with single-shot .303 rifles.

Yet the tale has remained within the shadows. Drawing on long-hidden records and first-person debts, Peter Grose tells what relatively occurred and takes us into the lives of the folk who have been there. there has been a lot to be happy with in Darwin that day: braveness, mateship, decision and improvisation. however the darkish facet of the tale contains looting, desertion and a calamitous failure of management. Australians ran away simply because they didn't comprehend what else to do.

Absorbing, lively and fast moving, an ungainly fact is a compelling and revealing tale of the day conflict relatively got here to Australia, and the motley bunch of infantrymen and civilians who have been left to safeguard the nation.

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