From: Eastern US
I bet none of those books were written by Macarthur or his group.
Read the CMH precis on 32d Division, fought the japanese back over the Kokoda track!!!!
The Australian Army was poorly served by the SWPAC Command, our Government sold us down the river by allowing Macarthur so much control.
I am sympathetic to the quandary facing Australian Prime Minister Curtin. Australia's four AIF divisions were fighting in Africa (three) or had surrendered in Singapore and the DEI (one) . . . and the Japanese were bearing down on Australia.
Australia only had a population of 7 million at the time. A comparable situation for the US would be if the entire Army mobilized in WWII was overseas, including 20 divisions in Mexico that were suddenly surrounded and captured in a surprise invasion by Axis forces that were driving north towards the Rio Grande . . . and all we had to defend ourselves was militia.
Curtin's situation was compounded by the 'Europe First' strategy of London and Washington, and the exclusion of Australia from senior Allied war councils. With the benefit of hindsight we know that the Japanese had no serious plan to attack Australia, and that the Japanese army determined that they lacked the troops and logistics to conquer the country.*
But for Curtin and his contemporaries, the threat of invasion was very real. They felt abandoned by the British: Singapore fell, there was no British fleet to contest the Japanese advance, and Curtin had to fight a nasty 'telegram war' with Churchill to get his own AIF divisions home. Curtin found Roosevelt's reassurances to be lukewarm, at best.
For the Australian government, the arrival of MacArthur was providential. Here was a senior US military figure with a strong political following whose voice would be heard in the USA and who could be relied on trumpet the need to get more US military forces committed to Australia. It is no wonder that Curtin allied the Australian government with him. He had to weigh the loss of sovereignty of Australian forces versus the risk of being abandoned by the Allies and invaded by the Japanese.
Here's an interesting read discussing the changing nature of the Curtin-MacArthur relationship during the war:
* fortunately, the Japanese Army had never played AE.
< Message edited by Blackhorse -- 2/11/2018 1:07:20 AM >
WitP-AE -- US LCU & AI Stuff
Oddball: Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves? Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here? Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?