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by Eddiie Allan Stanton
Allen & Unwin 1996
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|The War Diaries of Eddie Allan Stanton
New Guinea 1945-46
Drafted into the Australian Army, Eddie Allan Stanton arrived in Port Moresby during 1942, just prior to the first Japanese air raids. Stanton was assigned to the Trobriand Islands. During the Battle of the Coral Sea, debris washed up on the beach and Japanese ships passed close to shore and an enemy aircraft overflew the island. He was involved with several aviators, including the crew of B-17F 41-24538 and A6M2 Zero 1575 pilot Maeda.
Intensely private, skeptical and intelligent, Stanton kept a diary during his four and a half years in Papua and New Guinea. Through his engaging prose, the reader shares the excitement of the early months of the war when invasion of was imminent and encounters with Japanese survivors of wrecked aircraft and ships were likely.
As the war moved north Stanton's confrontations were with thousands and thousands of Americans. He worked administering Papuans, his enemy was Japanese, and he encountered black and Hispanic Americans. Recorded with honesty, the entries in Stanton's diary reveal his experiences, his reactions to stress, his judgments and prejudices they reinforce the significance of race in the Pacific War. A product of White Autralia, Stanton can be a disturbing reminder of past attitudes.
Review by Justin Taylan
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