Australian Army Campaign Series No. 14: To Kokoda

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Media: BOOK - paperback, 236 pages
Author: N. Anderson
Year: 2014
ISBN: 9781922132956
Other: b&w & colour photos, maps, bibliog, index
Publisher: Army History Unit

When the Japanese war machine swept through South-East Asia in early 1942, it was inevitable that conflict would reach Australian territory on the island of New Guinea. The ultimate Japanese target was Port Moresby. Conquering the capital would sever communication between Australia and her American ally and allow Japanese air power to threaten Australia's northern cities.

When a seaborne invasion was thwarted at the Battle of the Coral Sea, the Nankai Shitai landed in Papua on 21 July and launched an overland attack. Having captured the village of Kokoda with its vital airstrip, the Japanese headed for Port Moresby, traversing the treacherous Kokoda Trail that winds across the mighty Owen Stanley Ridge.

The Australian Army was ill prepared to confront the Japanese. Poorly equipped, undertrained, and unaccustomed to jungle warfare, the untested militia battalions were the first to face the battle-hardened invading forces. Later, when veteran AIF brigades were rushed forward to bolster the militia they also fell in the path of the Japanese onslaught.

But the over-extension of supply lines and disaster on Guadalcanal eventually cruelled Japanese aspirations and the Kokoda campaign became a bloody and protracted struggle as the Australian troops fought to drive the Japanese off the Owen Stanley's and out of Papua.

Series Introduction
1. The Prelude
2. The Landings
3. The First Battle for Kokoda
4. The Second Battle for Kokoda
5. Deniki
6. The Battle of Isurava-Abuari: The First Phase
7. The Battle of Isurava-Abuari: The Second Phase
8. The Dighting Withdrawal
9. The Battle of Brigade Hill
10. Battle of Ioribaiwa
11. Imita Ridge
12. The Cautious Advance
13. To Templeton's Crossing
14. The Battle of Templeton's Crossing
15. The Battle of Eora Creek: The First Two Days
16. The Battle of Eora Creek Continues
17. Kokoda Recaptured
18. The Command Crisis
19. Conclusion

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Australian Army Campaign Series No. 14: To Kokoda


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