Bombing of Darwin

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For 2 May 1943 air raid on Darwin, see Raid on Darwin (2 May 1943). For other air raids on Darwin, see Air raids on Australia, 1942–43. Bombing of Darwin Part of World War II, Pacific War The explosion of an oil storage tank and clouds of smoke from other tanks, hit during the first Japanese air raid on Australia's mainland, at Darwin on 19 February 1942. In the foreground is HMAS Deloraine, which escaped damage. Date 19 February 1942 Location Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia Belligerents Australia United States Empire of Japan Commanders and leaders David V. J. Blake Chuichi Nagumo Strength 30 aircraft 45 ships 242 aircraft Casualties and losses 250–320 killed 300–400 wounded 23 aircraft destroyed 10 ships sunk 25 ships damaged 7 aircraft destroyed[1] [show] v t e Axis naval attacks against Australia [show] v t e Pacific War The bombing of Darwin on 19 February 1942 was both the first and the largest single attack mounted by a foreign power against Australia. On this day, 242 Japanese aircraft attacked ships in Darwin's harbour and the town's two airfields in an attempt to prevent the Allies from using them as bases to contest the invasions of Timor and Java. The town was only lightly defended, and the Japanese inflicted heavy losses upon the Allied forces at little cost to themselves. The urban areas of Darwin also suffered some damage from the raids, and there were a number of civilian casualties. This event is, on occasion, referred to as the "Pearl Harbor of Australia".[2] The Japanese raid was not like the Pearl Harbour raid, since Australia had declared war on Japan on 8 December 1941 so the Japanese were legitimately attacking an enemy. Although it was a less significant military target, a greater number of bombs were dropped on Darwin than were used in the attack on Pearl Harbor.[3][4] The Australian government downplayed

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