South West Pacific theatre of World War II

South West Pacific theatre of World War II

The South West Pacific was one of two theatres of World War II in the Pacific region, between 1942 and 1945. The South West Pacific theatre included the Philippines, the Netherlands East Indies (excluding Sumatra), Borneo, Australia, the Australian Territory of New Guinea (including the Bismarck Archipelago), the western part of the Solomon Islands and some neighbouring territories. The theatre takes its name from the major Allied command, which was known simply as the "South West Pacific Area".

In the theatre, Imperial Japanese forces fought primarily United States and Australian forces. Dutch, Filipino, British and other Allied forces also served in the theatre.

Most Japanese forces in the theatre were part of the Southern Expeditionary Army Group, which was formed on November 6, 1941, under General Hisaichi Terauchi (also known as Count Terauchi), who was ordered to attack and occupy Allied territories in South East Asia and the South Pacific.

On March 30 1942, the Allied South West Pacific Area command (SWPA) was formed and U.S. General Douglas MacArthur was appointed "Supreme Allied Commander South West Pacific Area".Cressman(2000)p.84]

Major campaigns in the theatre

* Philippines campaign, 1941-42
**Battle of Bataan
* Netherlands East Indies campaign, 1941-1942
** Battle of Badung Strait 19-20 February 1942Dull(1978)p.61]
** Battle of the Java Sea 27 February 1942Silverstone(1968)pp.9-11]
** Battle of Sunda Strait 28 February-1 March 1942Dull(1978)p.75]
** Second Battle of the Java Sea 1 March 1942Dull(1978)p.91]
* Guadalcanal campaign 1942–43
** Battle of Savo Island 9 August 1942Potter&Nimitz(1960)p.695]
** Battle of the Eastern Solomons 24-25 August 1942Potter&Nimitz(1960)p.697]
** Battle of Cape Esperance 11-12 October 1942Potter&Nimitz(1960)p.699]
** Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands 26 October 1942Potter&Nimitz(1960)p.701]
** Naval Battle of Guadalcanal 12-15 November 1942
** Battle of Tassafaronga 30 November 1942
* Solomon Islands campaign 1943–45
** Battle of Kula Gulf 6 July 1943Potter&Nimitz(1960)p.732]
** Battle of Kolombangara 13 July 1943
** Battle of Vella Gulf 6-7 August 1943
** Naval Battle of Vella Lavella 6-7 October 1943
** Battle of Empress Augusta Bay 2 November 1943
** Battle of Cape St. George 25 November 1943
* New Guinea campaign, 1942-45
** Battle of the Coral Sea 4-8 May 1942
** Kokoda Track campaign 1942
** Battle of Buna-Gona 1942
** Battle of the Bismarck Sea 2 March 1943
** Landing at Nassau Bay 1943
** Salamaua-Lae campaign 1943
** Huon Peninsula campaign 1943
** New Britain campaign 26 December 1943Potter&Nimitz(1960)p.759]
** Admiralty Islands campaign 29 February 1944
** Aitape-Wewak campaign 22 April 1944
** Invasion of Hollandia 22 April 1944Sulzberger(1966)pp.332-333]
** Battle of Biak 27 May 1944
** Battle of Noemfoor 2 July 1944
** Battle of Morotai 15 September 1944
* Portuguese Timor, 1942-43
* Philippines campaign, 1944-45
**Battle of Leyte Gulf 20 October 1944
* Borneo campaign, 1945

ee also

*American-British-Dutch-Australian Command



*cite book
last = Cressman
first = Robert J.
authorlink =
coauthors =
year = 2000
chapter =
title = The Official Chronology of the U.S. Navy in World War II
publisher = Naval Institute Press
location = Annapolis, Maryland
id = ISBN 1-55750-149-1

*cite book
last = Drea
first = Edward J.
authorlink =
coauthors =
year = 1998
chapter =
title = In the Service of the Emperor: Essays on the Imperial Japanese Army
publisher = University of Nebraska Press
location = Nebraska
id = ISBN 0-8032-1708-0

* cite book
last = Dull
first = Paul S.
coauthors =
year = 1978
title = A Battle History of the Imperial Japanese Navy (1941-1945)
publisher = Naval Institute Press
location = Annapolis, Maryland
id =

*cite book
last = Eichelberger
first = Robert
authorlink =
coauthors =
year = 1989 (reissue)
chapter =
title = Our Jungle Road to Tokyo
publisher = Battery Press
location = New York
id = ISBN 0-89839-132-6

*cite book
last = Griffith
first = Thomas E., Jr.
authorlink =
coauthors =
year = 1998
chapter =
title = MacArthur's Airman : General George C. Kenney and the War in the Southwest Pacific
publisher = University Press of Kansas
location = Lawrence, Kansas, U.S.A.
id = ISBN 0-7006-0909-1

*cite book
last = Krueger
first = Walter
authorlink =
coauthors =
year = 1979
chapter =
title = From Down Under to Nippon: Story of the 6th Army in World War II
publisher = Zenger
location =
id = ISBN 0-89201-046-0

* cite book
last = Potter
first = E.B.
coauthors = Chester Nimitz
year = 1960
title = Sea Power
publisher = Prentice-Hall
location =
id =

* cite book
last = Silverstone
first = Paul H.
coauthors =
year = 1968
title = U.S. Warships of World War II
publisher = Doubleday and Company
location =
id =

* cite book
last = Sulzberger
first = C.L.
coauthors =
year = 1966
title = The American Heritage Picture History of World War II
publisher = Crown Publishers
location =
id =

*cite web
last = U.S. Army Center of Military History
first =
authorlink =
coauthors =
date =
year =
month =
url =
title = Japanese Operations in the Southwest Pacific Area, Volume II - Part I
format =
work = Reports of General MacArthur
pages =
publisher =
language =
accessdate = 2006-12-08
accessyear =
- Translation of the official record by the Japanese Demobilization Bureaux detailing the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy's participation in the Southwest Pacific area of the Pacific War.

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