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Listed under:  Social relations  >  War  >  World War II
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Broome during World War II

This web site focusses on the events in Broome during World War II, in particular the air raids in 1942 and the aftermath. The site includes a virtual museum that includes photographs, newspaper articles, film clips and interviews for students to engage with historical information from a range of sources. The education ...

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Japan enters World War II

The Japanese bombing of the American naval base at Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941 caught the USA, Britain and their allies by surprise, as did the rapid progress of Japanese forces through Southeast Asia. This British Movietone newsreel captures Great Britain's response to Japan's sudden entry into World War II.

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Towards World War II: appeasing the fascists

In 1935 and '37, Australian Prime Minister Joseph Lyons met Italy's fascist dictator, Benito Mussolini. Lyons supported the international policy of 'appeasement', which sought to avoid a second world war by placating the demands of fascist leaders such as Mussolini and Adolf Hitler. Neither Lyons's diplomacy or the notion ...

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Laptop wrap: Impact of World War II on Australian civilians

This resource is a page with a focus on the impact of World War II on Australian civilians, addressing empathy in History and ethical use of sources, with supporting activities and links to resources.

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World War II: summary outline of key events

This resource is a summary of key events of World War II from 1939 to 1945. It is organised as an annotated timeline with brief descriptions of the events of each year. Further information about the context and background to the main events of each year is included under the timeline.

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Life in a World War II commando company

Discover the hazards and the extreme hardships experienced by Australians fighting the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II. In this ABC Open report, World War II veteran Russell Blanch recalls some of his experiences while serving in an Australian commando company in the rugged mountains and dense jungles of New Guinea.

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The German Club in Adelaide decorated for Hitler's birthday, 1939

This is a black-and-white photograph that shows the German Club in Adelaide decorated for a celebration of the 50th birthday of the German Fuhrer (leader) Adolf Hitler. The photograph, which was taken on 20 April 1939 just five months before the start of the Second World War, shows a flight of flower-adorned steps leading ...

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Turning young civilians into regular soldiers

Australia was not the only country to debate the issue of conscription. This Movietone newsreel from the late 1930s shows Great Britain considering the merits of conscripting young men into the armed services.

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Invictus Games Sydney 2018 – HSIE/English Stage 5 – Veteran wellbeing

This Stage 5 HSIE/English resource examines Australia’s roles in war, including their involvement in WWI and WWII and highlights Australia’s role in the global context during the twentieth century. Students will examine the historical context of the wars and the perceptions that existed during the twentieth century regarding ...

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Equipment, more equipment! WW II

How could Australians at home contribute to military success in Africa and Europe during World War II? In this clip from a wartime Movietone newsreel, former Australian Prime Minister Billy Hughes explains the challenges facing the 2nd Australian Imperial Force in 1941. He implores Australians to contribute to the manufacture ...

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Allied forces strike back in the Pacific

World War II spread to the Pacific region following the Japanese bombing of the American naval base at Pearl Harbor in December 1941. Japanese forces took control of much of South-East Asia and the islands of the southwest Pacific. Having been overwhelmed by the speed and severity of the Japanese advance, Allied forces ...

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Bravery under fire: Australian war nurses

Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) nurses were ordered to leave Singapore in the days before the city fell to Japanese forces, a critical phase in World War II. The ship on which the nurses travelled came under fire and many were killed while attending to wounded soldiers and passengers. In this newsreel, listen to ...

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Labour camps in Australia

Japanese-Australians were interned in forced labour camps during World War II. Why? Why do you think the internees who worked for Captain Reed felt grateful to him? What does this tell you about their treatment, in general, in other internment camps?

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Australian Women's Land Army

Have you heard of the Australian Women's Land Army? See if you can find out more about this inspiring organisation and about the work they performed during World War II.

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Building the atomic bomb

The use of atomic bombs on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki hastened the surrender of Japan, bringing World War II to an end. The bombs killed more than 100,000 people immediately, while thousands more died of starvation, disease and radioactive exposure in the ensuing months. This US newsreel footage from 1945 presents ...

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Reinforcing the 39th on the Kokoda Trail

On 21 July 1942, thousands of Japanese troops landed on the north coast of Papua in order to advance south along the steep, muddy Kokoda Trail. Their objective: capture Port Moresby. In this clip from the Department of Veterans' Affairs, find out how reinforcements from the Australian Imperial Force's 21st Brigade contributed ...

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Museums as history

This resource is a module that examines the issues involved in creating a museum exhibition and how production decisions affect the 'history' that is presented to the public. Factors including an exhibition’s purpose, audience, choice of items and challenges are considered. Part of the Home front: Wartime Sydney 1939-1945 ...

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Sites2See: Indigenous Veterans

This resource is a page about the history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander veterans of the Australian armed forces, with case studies, activities and discussion points. The resource is relevant to selected outcomes of at least two topics in Stage 5 History including Australia's commemoration of World War I.

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From the front lines: the Battle for Tobruk

The North African port of Tobruk was the site of ferocious fighting during World War II. Here, Australian and other Allied soldiers repelled Italian and German attacks and even drove the enemy backwards. At the time, this was not only a strategic victory, but a psychological victory, proving that the Allies were capable ...

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Military success for WW II Allies in North Africa

In August 1940, Italian dictator Benito Mussolini ordered the invasion of Egypt. His plan was, in part, to take control of the Suez Canal and the rich oil fields that lay beyond. In December 1940, Allied forces launched a successful counterattack, recapturing the fortified town of Sidi Barrani and pushing on to Tobruk in ...