Australia in World War II

Australia joined with the United Kingdom in declaring war on September 3, 1939 on Germany. New Zealand did so also, preferring to send a separate letter to demonstrate independence.

Allied POWs in Japanese Camps

Huge numbers of Allied POWs were captured by the Japanese between December 1941 and May 1942.

Deep racial hatred, led many Allied soldiers to prefer death to capture. But the large numbers of soldiers surrendered by their commanders in the Philippines and Singapore did not have much choice. They entered captivity at the start of the war, and only about half of them would leave the POW camps alive.

Australian British Dutch American (ABDA) Command

The rapid advance of the Japanese stunned even them. Their advance - formed by superior equipment, training, tactics, and in some cases, numbers - left the Allies confused and in disarray.

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