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Artistic License History / Australia

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  • In Real Life, the Japanese never set foot on the Australian mainland. (The famous battles along the Kokoda Track were what is now Papua New Guinea, which at the time was two separate territories administered by Australia.) They bombed Darwin, then left. The bombing also actually occurred in 1942, not 1941.
  • Japanese Sub Crews did occasionally go ashore in remote locations along the coast to gather fresh water, and float planes landed on the northern islands after the raid in an unsuccessful attempt to find and rescue downed Japanese aircrew. The large landing party shown exploring the beach for no logically explained reason in the movie was pure fiction.
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  • Darwin was never ordered to be evacuated. After the end of the first raid (the Japanese carriers), the RAAF base commander ordered his command to muster outside of the base in order to prevent further unnecessary casualities. It was while exiting the base that some troops encounted civilians leaving Darwin and, from lack of clear orders, 'hitched lifts'. It was while this troop movement was happening that the second raid (54 Japanese land based Nell and Betty twin engined bombers - also not shown in the movie) arrived and carpet bombed the RAAF base with some 530 60kg bombs, causing a massive morale effect but little to no extra damage or casualities.
  • Zero fighters carried drop tanks, not the bombs that were shown attacking the mission station.
  • Bathust Island was straffed by Zeros, not bombed. Their target was the American transport aircraft that had previously forced landed on the RAAF Advanced Operational Base (read 'basic airstrip') there.
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