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World War II
Troops from New Zealand disembark from U.S. Landing Craft Infantry ship LCI-444 to occupy Green Island on February 16
New Zealand entered the Second World War by declaring war on Germany at 9.30 pm 3 September 1939 (NZT), Prime Minister Michael Joseph Savage declaring (from his bed) that:
- "With gratitude for the past and confidence in the future we range ourselves without fear beside Britain. Where she goes, we go; where she stands, we stand. We are only a small and young nation, but we march with a union of hearts and souls to a common destiny."
The U.S. declared war on the Empire of Japan on December 8, 1941, a day after the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7. Until that time, the United States had maintained neutrality, although it had, since March that same year, supplied the Allies with war materials through the Lend-Lease Act.
World War II was arguably the most military interaction between both the United States and New Zealand, working intimatly in the Pacific Campaign fighting the Empire of Japan and, to a much lesse extent, Nazi Germany.
Pacific War Council
The Pacific War Council was an inter-governmental body established in 1942 and intended to control the Allied war effort in the Pacific and Asian campaigns of World War II.
The Pacific War Council was formed in Washington on April 1, 1942, with a membership consisting of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, his key advisor Harry Hopkins, and representatives from Britain, China, Australia, New Zealand, the Netherlands and Canada. Representatives from India and the Philippines were later added.
The Battle of the Green Islands
The Battle of the Green Islands was fought from January 29 to February 27 1944, between Japan and Allied forces from the New Zealand 3rd Division and the United States (U.S.). The Green Islands, located between Bougainville and New Ireland, were part of the Australian Territory of New Guinea. The Allied forces invaded several islands and recaptured them from heavily outnumbered Japanese forces.
Battle of Kolombangara
The Battle of Kolombangara was a naval battle of the Pacific campaign of World War II, fought on the night of 12 July–13 July 1943, off Kolombangara in the Solomon Islands. A Japanese "Tokyo Express" reinforcement force, commanded by Rear Admiral Shunji Izaki and comprising the light cruiser Jintsu and a number of other Japanese Naval ships made a run down "The Slot" from the upper Solomons to land troops at Vila on Kolombangara by way of Kula Gulf on the night of 12 July 1943. An Allied force, commanded by Rear Admiral Walden L. Ainsworth and comprising the light cruisers USS Honolulu, USS St. Louis and HMNZS Leander and a number of other United States Navy vessels intercepted the enemy vessels, Jinstu was reduced to a wreck while Leander was struck by a torpedo and, severely damaged.
The Guadalcanal Campaign
The Guadalcanal campaign, also known as the Battle of Guadalcanal, was fought between August 7, 1942, and February 7, 1943, in the Pacific theatre of World War II. This campaign, which was a decisive and strategically significant campaign of World War II, was fought on the ground, at sea, and in the air, and pitted Allied, most notably, the United States, New Zealand and Australia and their respective military forces against Imperial Japanese forces. The fighting took place on and around the island of Guadalcanal in the southern Solomon Islands, and was the first major offensive launched by Allied forces against the Empire of Japan.
The Battle of New Georgia
The Battle of New Georgia was a battle of the Pacific campaign of World War II. It was part of Operation Cartwheel, the Allied grand strategy in the South Pacific. The battle took place in the New Georgia group of islands, in the central Solomon Islands from June 20, 1943, to August 25 1943, between Allied forces and the Empire of Japan.