War In The Pacific – Staying Upbeat In Canberra – Staying Determined In Chungking – February 1, 1942
News from Radio Australia and Radio Chungking via Shortwave – February 1, 1942 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
War as viewed from Australia and China this February 1, 1942 – In February 1942, an invasion of the Australian continent appeared imminent. Just ten weeks after Japan’s invasion of South-East Asia, Australia itself became the target of air and sea attacks.
Whether fighting on the front line in northern Australia, living on the land, or experiencing austerity measures in the cities, Australians found a unity of purpose they had not known before. They responded to the attacks and the threat of invasion in their own ways, depending on where they lived and what jobs they did. Civilians took air raid precautions like digging shelters, they trained for civil defense, learned first aid, budgeted their rations and worked in vital industries. Those in uniform crewed anti-aircraft artillery, staffed the lines of communication and supply, or searched for mines or submarines. This broadcast from Radio Australia was primarily a commentary (listened to with 2023 ears, a little strange at times) on how Australia was going to face this phase of the war, peppered with recent events and how the Armed forces were handling it. It was news and comment with a morale boost.
Meanwhile, the war viewed from Chungking – it was reported Japanese troops in full retreat toward Canton after being defeated in a five-day battle with Chinese forces east of the city, according to a Chinese communique and reported on this broadcast. News of other fighting going on throughout Asia – the latest on Malaya and gains by Japanese forces and an almost complete occupation of Jahore. Japanese landings on Borneo and several other key areas in the Pacific.
Much going on in the War, this February 1st, 1942 as reported by Radio Australia and Radio Chungking via Shortwave (and a bit difficult to hear at times, but only for short periods).
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