The Battle for Australia is a contested historiographical term used to claim a link between a series of battles near Australia during the Pacific War of the Second World War. Since 2008 these battles have been commemorated by Battle for Australia Day, which falls on the first Wednesday in September.
Peter Stanley—the former principal historian at the Australian War Memorial—argues that the concept of a 'Battle for Australia' is mistaken as these actions did not form a single campaign aimed against Australia. Stanley has also stated that no historian he knows believes that there was a 'Battle for Australia'. In a 2006 speech, Stanley argued that the concept of a Battle for Australia is invalid as the events which are considered to form the battle were only loosely related. Stanley argued that "The Battle for Australia movement arises directly out of a desire to find meaning in the terrible losses of 1942"; and "there was no 'Battle for Australia', as such", as the Japanese did not launch a co-ordinated campaign directed against Australia. Furthermore, Stanley stated that while the phrase 'Battle for Australia' was used[by whom?] in wartime propaganda, it was not applied to the events of 1942 until the 1990s and that countries other than Australia do not recognise this 'battle' of the Second World War.