New Guinea August–September 1943


Map Code: Ax00348

Following an arduous push through the thick jungle of Papua New Guinea’s eastern peninsula, Australian and US forces made their way to the Japanese bases at Salamaua and Lae to complete the Salamaua–Lae operation. As Allied reinforcements arrived in the area, the Japanese were gradually and deliberately pushed back towards Salamaua from Wau. More Allied troops encircled the Japanese from the east and after fierce resistance secured what little was left of the town. Meanwhile an amphibious assault was launched against Lae to the north under Operation Postern. With artillery support, troops landed near the town and closed in over the next few days. The Japanese resisted heavily but by the time the town was taken much of the Japanese force in the area had managed to escape. The Salamaua–Lae operation was completed by mid-September with two important air bases being constructed at Lae whilst Salamaua proved unsuitable.

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