Tag: Imperial Japanese Navy

Abe First Japanese PM To Visit Japanese-Bombed Darwin

In 1942, Japanese forces launched the only attacks on the Australian mainland, and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe became the first premier to visit Darwin, the most heavily damaged city bombed by the Japanese.
Apart from Darwin, Japanese forces also attacked Sydney, Broome, Katherine, Wyndham, Exmouth, Port Headland and Townsville in the early stages of World War II.
Abe’s grandfather, former Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi, was arrested for war crimes, but released without conviction. Kishi was instrumental in re-establishing a strong postwar trade relationship between Australia and Japan.

Shinzo Abe arrives in Darwin for first visit by Japanese leader

A Little-Known, Bizarre Australia-Japan Christmas Story

A memorial to Japanese military members on Christmas Island.

A memorial to Japanese military members on Christmas Island.

Dec. 25, the original date of this post, is Christmas Day, but Christmas also gives its name to an island with a little-known — and bizarre — role in Australia-Japan relations.
An Australian territory, Christmas Island was with Nauru and parts of New Guinea parts of Australian-governed lands the Japanese occupied during World War II.
A Japanese nameplate dating to the World War II occupation found on Christmas Island.

A Japanese nameplate dating to the World War II occupation found on Christmas Island.

There’s an interesting tale behind Japan’s wartime occupation of Christmas Island, though.
It was long thought the island would be targeted because of its rich phosphate deposits.
Indeed, the Imperial Japanese Navy headed to the island in March 1942. The Allied troops defending Christmas Island realized they were outnumbered by an overpowering force, dismantled the island’s defenses and raised a white flag of surrender. The Japanese, however, sailed away. Once again, the Allies raised the Union Jack.
Days later, though, members of the British Indian force mutinied, overpowered and killed their British officers and interred the remaining Europeans on Christmas Island. The Indian mutineers then invited the Imperial Japanese forces to take over the island, which they did under the command of Rear-Admiral Shoji Nishimura.
Imperial Japanese Navy Rear-Admiral Shoji Nishimura

Imperial Japanese Navy Rear-Admiral Shoji Nishimura

Sabotage by workers ensured Japan gained little phosphate and it soon withdrew all but a token force from Christmas Island, which was handed to Australia to govern following Japan’s defeat in World War II. Australia continues governing Christmas Island through to today.
More About Christmas Island

Christmas Island 2/7
Christmas Island 3/7
Christmas Island 4/7
Christmas Island 5/7
Christmas Island 6/7
Christmas Island 7/7
The Mystery of Christmas Island, March 1942


One of the Imperial Japanese Navy midget subs involved in the 1942 attack on Sydney Harbor


Sydney sub wreck opened to divers(英語)