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Thumbnail for Flagship : the cruiser HMAS Australia II and the Pacific war on Japan

Flagship : the cruiser HMAS Australia II and the Pacific war on Japan

Carlton, Michael, 1946-2016
"In 1928 the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) acquired the fast and heavy cruiser HMAS Australia, the second RAN ship to bear this name. After being virtually mothballed in the Depression years she would come in to her own as the flagship of the Australian fleet when the world awoke to the menace of Hitler's Germany. Australia saw her first action of the Second World War against the Vichy French, during the abortive 1940 attempt to install the young General de Gaulle in Dakar, West Africa, as the Free French leader. She then patrolled the North Atlantic on the lookout for German battleships and was bombed by the Luftwafe in Liverpool. The flagship returned home to join the war against the Japanese. She fought in the Battle of the Coral Sea near Papua New Guinea, the first sea battle to stop the Japanese advance in the Pacific - and then took part in the greatest sea battle of all time, the Battle of Leyte Gulf in the Philippines. There, she was struck by a kamikaze bomber, killing her captain and 28 other men. The next year, 1945, she was hit again and again, by no fewer than four kamikaze planes on four successive days, with another 44 men killed. This is the story of the last of our ships ever to be called Australia, as the RAN has now retired the name. Based on naval records, diaries and interviews with the handful of remaining survivors, it vividly brings to life our great sea battles of the Second World War in the Pacific, and also the private hopes and fears of Australia's crew, even encompassing a disturbing murder aboard ship."--Book jacket.
North Sydney, NSW William Heinemann, 2016.©2016
xiii, 642 pages, 24 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, colour maps, portraits ; 24 cm.
Includes bibliographical references (pages 603-609) and index.
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