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World War II
Transcript of World War II
Why was were the Australians called the 'Rats of Tobruk'?
Who were the 2 sides in this battle?
What were the experiences of the soldiers during this battle?
Do you agree with the title the 'Rats of Tobruk? Why or why not? Use evidence from the sources you have analysed. Speech by Robert Menzies: see Source 5.14 on p. 166 in the textbook.
Why are we going to war again? See p. 173 in your textbook.
1941: German tactic of blitzkrieg ('lightning war') allows Hitler to conquer Europe.
End of January 1941: Australian army (6th & 7th Divisions) returns to defend Australia from the Japanese.
Late Oct - early Nov 1942: 9th Div plays a large role in Battle of El Alamein. Communism: the government controls the nation's wealth in the belief that the state should provide everyone with an equal share, and where private ownership is limited. (see glossary in the textbook) Capitalism? Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December, 1941.
Hitler's success in Europe encouraged the Japanese to move south and take territory they believed to be necessary for Japan's survival.
Japanese attack force of 6 aircraft carriers and 24 warships sailed under strict radio silence in late Nov 1941.
- 7 US battleships were sunk/damaged
- >2400 men killed.
Fortunately, for the US, all 4 aircraft carriers were at sea and were not
This brought the US into WWII. Pearl Harbor Questions to Consider (p.168):
- Why was Japan considered to be an enemy?
- Why the bombing of Pearl Harbor so important?
- How can we explore different perspectives of the bombing of Pearl Harbour?
Compare Source 5.9 and 5.11 and answer the questions. (p.168) Japan moving South After attacking Pearl Harbor, where did Japan go next? The Fall of Singapore Why is Singapore so important? Singapore was regarded as a stronghold that is easily defended.
What did this mean for Australia and her security?
10 Dec 1941: Japanese bombers sink 2 British warships (the
'Repulse' and the 'Prince of Wales' off the Malayan coast.
Between these 2: Japanese continue air attacks - Allies were
not expecting air attacks and could not defend Singapore well at all.
15 Feb 1942: Singapore is surrendered and the Japanese capture
85,000 Allied troops, with 15,000 Australians of the 8th Division. Battle of El Alamein 'Rats of Tobruk' Pearl Harbor Declaration of War Australia and the desert war The perceived threat to Australia from Japan. Examine Source 5.13 and answer the questions.
- What is total war?
- Who is John Curtin and what influence did he have? The Fall of Singapore Activity: Read p.173-174 on the Fall of Singapore and write a newspaper article or news report on the events that occurred. Be ready to read and present yours to the class next lesson. After Singapore was surrendered, what did this mean for Australia? Battle of the Coral Sea Timeline Add the following events to the class timeline.
(Each group does one of the following - as allocated.)
Include dates, cause and effect of each event. - Start of WWII
- 'Rats of Tobruk'
- Battle of El Alamein
- Battle of Pearl Harbor
- Japan moving South
- Fall of Singapore
- Bombing of Darwin Foreign Policy Why were the US aircraft carriers important? For the first time, a naval battle was fought in which the ships never saw each other. Instead, the attacks were led by aircraft on the enemy ships. Battle of the Coral Sea Why was the Battle of the Coral Sea important? It was the first loss for the Japanese at sea. The Allied success was considered by most people at the time to have saved Australia from Japanese invasion. Before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, a Japanese invasion fleet approached Port Moresby in PNG. If invasion was successful, Japanese planes could easily bomb Townsville and other Australian cities. Japanese troops could also easily invade northern Australia.
4 May 1942: Allied naval force led by HMAS 'Australia' and 2 US aircraft carriers USS 'Lexington' & USS 'Yorktown' attempt to block a Japanese advance 700 kms from Cairns. For 4 days the Battle of the Coral Sea raged.
Allied bombers from bases in North Queensland helped torpedo planes launched from American aircraft carriers to find and attack the Japanese ships.
8 May, 1942: Japanese withdraw.
Despite aircraft sinking USS 'Lexington' & damaging USS 'Yorktown' & HMAS 'Australia', Japanese invasion force suffered more losses. 2 of their aircraft carriers had been destroyed & 16 other ships sunk. Bombing of Darwin How does the Fall of Singapore change Australia's foreign policy forever? Definition: strategies used to guard the national interests and goals of a particular country. Questions:
- Why do we need foreign policy?
- Can Australia defend herself in WWII against the Japanese forces? Turn to p.171 - Source 5.13.
Australians, you must be seized with the dire fact that we are in imminent and deadly peril. The spearhead of the Japanese hordes reaches south - always south.
I can put it no more plainly than this...Australia faces the darkest hour in her history. Lands to the north of us which believed themselves safe and free already have known the iron heel of the invader; or momentarily await his landing.
The Government has striven ceaselessly on your behalf, has stated your claims overseas; has called on you for more and still more effort; has exhorted you to realise to the full that what was but a threat yesterday may mean invasion and desolation in the very near future.
If you fail to answer that call you help the enemy. Would you have supported Britain or America after the Fall of Singapore? Why? For many of you, life still moves along pleasant paths. For many, the working pace of peace time has not given place to the pressure appealed for in war production. For many of you, readiness to provoke strikes or lockouts suggests an ignorance of, or disregard for, national and personal security.
Those things cannot continue. We are now a nation compelled to fight, to organise every resource we have as an indispensible contribution to the total war effort of the united people.
Those Australians who are fighting, working, adapting themselves grimly to a wartime way of life cannot be let down by a careless, carefree section who may wreck the whole future of our race. Answer the Source 5.13 questions on p.171. Context Questions:
- Who is John Curtin?
- Why is he important in WWII? 1942: first period in Australia's history where we were under direct military attack.
Key Figures - bombing of Darwin is...
- 19 February, 1942: 4 days after the Japanese conquest of Singapore.
- About 6 weeks after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Why did they attack?
- Control seas to the north of Australia
- Secure conquest of Dutch East Indies 1st enemy attack:
- Early morning raid in Darwin by 188 Japanese planes.
- Midday: 54 Japanese bombers attacked Darwin's RAAF base.
- 250 people were killed, 100s injured (91 sailors, 16 Australian servicemen & 1 servicewoman were killed, with the rest being civilians).
- Lots of damage to town and ships in the harbour.
- To avoid mass panic, the government only stated that 15 people were killed, with 24 wounded. Over the next 2 years, Darwin was attacked at least 58 times, but no attack was as serious as the first two.
The town of Broome and ships in the Torres Strait were also attacked. Even QANTAS aircraft were shot down by Japanese planes. How do these interviews and footage help you in your understanding of the bombing of Darwin?
Write two sentences explaining the bombing of Darwin in relation to this footage. Where did they go next? Even though the Japanese fleet retreated after the Battle of the Coral Sea, Japanese bombers and submarines still attacked Australia.
What did we do?
- Barbed wire was placed on beaches to stop invasions.
- People practised what to do in case of an air raid.
- Placed a boom net over Sydney Harbour to stop submarines getting in. 30 May 1942: a Japanese seaplane flew down Sydney Harbour, then to Mascot and back out to its mother submarine.
- Why did nobody hear it?
- What was it doing?
31 May, 1942: 3 Japanese midget submarines entered Sydney Harbour. Each submarine had 2 crew members and 2 torpedoes. 1 submarine got caught but the other 2 followed a Manly ferry into the harbour.
- 1st submarine was detected at 9:30pm caught in the boom net and blew itself up to avoid capture.
- 2nd submarine was spotted and attacked at 11pm, but it responded by firing torpedoes at USS 'Chicago'. It missed, but a torpedo exploded and killed 21 sailors. (Interesting fact: nobody knew about what happened to the 2nd submarine until remains were found in Nov 2006 by recreational scuba divers.)
- 3rd submarine was detected near Taronga Park Zoo at 5am the next morning and was attacked, but the Japanese shot themsilves to avoid capture.
7 June, 1942: Sydney was attacked by a Japanese submarine off the coast. 10 shells were fired, and 4 exploded in Bondi. Newcastle was also shelled.
Now Australians knew what it was like to be directly involved in the war. Why do people not recognise the importance of battles such as the Battle of the Coral Sea?
How do you think the veterans feel when they are not recognised for their contribution to World War II? Next Topic