2016 25c Coin 'Anzac to Afghanistan' - KOKODA
Fighting in dense jungle, amid short supplies and tropical diseases, Kokoda was one of Australia's hardest fought battles of the Second World War. In July 1942, Japanese forces landed on the northern coast of New Guinea with the objective of making their way overland along the 96km jungle path known as the Kokoda Track, then capturing Port Moresby on the southern coast. This would have given the Japanese a base from which to attack Australia.
The Japanese assault on Port Moresby was initially successful. Despite winning battles in the early stages of the campaign, Australian troops were forced to retreat. Virtually all ammunition, equipment and supplies were carried over the mountainous jungle path by hand. Native carriers, known to the troops as “Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels”, helped carry and care for the wounded. By September, the Japanese were within 50km of Port Moresby. They too had to contend with the terrain and ultimately advanced beyond the limits of their supply line. The situation worsened for them once American troops occupied Guadalcanal, attacking Japanese ships. Following the Japanese decision to withdraw, Australian and American troops followed the Japanese until they reached their coastal bases at Buna and Gona. While a victory for the Allies, the Kokoda campaign resulted in more than 600 Australian dead, 1600 wounded and more than 4000 other casualties. The fighting in New Guinea continued until August 1945.
|Brand||Royal Australian Mint|
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