Darwin war history
Written by Norman Cramp, Director of Darwin Military Museum.
Seventy-three years ago, on the 15th August 1945, orders were issued to the US Pacific Fleet and other allied forces operating in the Pacific Region ‘to cease offensive operations against the Japanese’.
The ‘Naval Message – News Communique 15/8/45’, presented below is a copy of the original telegraphed communication sheet that effectively ordered, and announced, the end of the Second World War.
The 15th August is now commemorated as ‘Victory in the Pacific Day’. After six long and bloody years of war, it was all over. Japan had surrendered and peace had been restored – albeit for a few short years.
The war in Europe had ended on 8th May 1945 when German forces surrendered to the Allies following the fall of Berlin and the death of Adolf Hitler. The 8th May is commemorated as ‘Victory in Europe Day’ and the end of WW2, however, the war dragged on for another 3 months before Japan capitulated and the war had completely come to an end.
By war’s end, Australia’s contribution to the victories amounted to;
Even though the fighting was over, the pain, suffering and heartbreak for many would continue well into the future as the men and women and their loved ones tried to return to their ‘normal’ lives.
Lest We Forget
Darwin Military Museum
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