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Reader riposte: Choice or dependence?

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28 September 2011 12:58

Al Parkes writes:

Interesting article about our strategic situation in WW2. I will have to be contrary on some assumptions about where our strategic focus was before the entry of US and Japan into WW2. I do not believe there is any strong evidence Australia, as a Government or society, was ready to make a major shift in foreign policy, away from mother England.

The events in Europe were the total focus of Australia's interests until the Pacific theatre of war started. The prospect of The Axis cutting off supply routes held by the British Admiralty were very real and apparent. By mid 1941 the UK and the USSR were desperately strung out and looking down the barrel of defeat. Thanks to the competence of the RAF radar system, RAF tactics, naval superiority and Nazi high command incompetence, the UK survived before the US entered the war. The Pacific War brought WW2 into our backyards and naturally the US alliance followed. But let's not forget until the battle of the Coral Sea, we relied on the Royal Navy to keep most of our sea routes clear.

We had no choice. Our strategic neccesity, extrapolated our policy. And the horrors of Europe, gave us the resolve to commit.

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