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  1. See a Problem?
  2. Path of Infinite Sorrow (eBook, ePUB)
  3. Path of Infinite Sorrow | Souq - Egypt
  4. The path of infinite sorrow : the Japanese on the Kokoda Track

After a punishing fighting march across the Owen Stanleys, the Japanese reached Ioribaiwa Ridge, 42 kilometres from Port Moresby and within sight of the Gulf of Papua by 16 September The four- to six-week fight over kilometres of unforgiving terrain and intermittent strong opposition is described in graphic detail. Only of the eventual Japanese troops who set out were in any condition to fight. Even then, survivors were starving and exhausted. Some companies of had only 50 or 60 fit men, many of whom had to act as stretcher bearers for their own sick and wounded.

Other, much greater, events interacted with the fate of the South Seas Force.

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Between 4 and 7 June American carrier aircraft destroyed the cream of the Japanese carrier navy at Midway and turned back the Midway Island invasion fleet. The Japanese invaded Milne Bay on 25 August, but were defeated and pushed out within a fortnight. Their Guadalcanal toehold was also being seriously challenged by American Marines.

Importantly, the extended Japanese supply line was proving vulnerable to Allied aircraft and submarine interdiction.


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The Japanese expected little opposition to their Milne Bay landing. Instead, there were infantry and others dug in and waiting, including two RAAF squadrons of P Kittyhawk fighter-bombers. Of Japanese Marines landed on 25 August , only were evacuated a fortnight later. Of those, were wounded. If the Australians, in conditions very like ours, had done it, so could we.


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  4. They were so poorly equipped that all they had to dig in with were bayonets, bully beef tins and helmets. Even these professional soldiers found it hard going. The AIF pugaree was made of lighter-colored finer woven multi-layered khaki material. After working the Port Moresby wharves for months, B Company of the 39th Battalion Militia suddenly kitted up and tramped across the Owen Stanleys to be thrown virtually immediately into battle.

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