The Japanese air raids on Darwin on 19 February 1942 are well known to most Australians, but what happened afterwards? For almost two years the airspace over north-west Australia was routinely penetrated by Japanese air raids, tallying about 70 in total. The 1942–43 air raids on Darwin constituted the only sustained and intensive direct assault on Australian territory in the whole of World War II. Telling the story of the RAAF’s No 1 Fighter Wing, composed of both Australian and British spitfire pilots, Darwin Spitfires explores the little-known 1943 season of air combat over the top end, recovering this important aspect of Australian history.
About the Author
Anthony Cooper is a former RAAF officer and retired school teacher with a Ph.D. in history on German civil aviation in the Weimar Republic, and the author of HMAS Bataan 1952 (New South 2010); Darwin Spitfires (New South, 2011 & Pen and Sword, 2013); Kokoda Air Strikes (New South, 2014); RAAF Bombers over Germany (Rosenberg, 2016); Paddy Finucane and the Legend of the Kenley Wing (Fonthill, 2016); and Sub Hunters (Fonthill, 2020). He has had media experience as an author, including interviews for print media, live radio interviews, and book talks.
‘This fascinating book reclaims an important, little-known aspect of our war history.’ —Brisbane News
‘It is a real pleasure to read Cooper’s careful dissection of each dogfight, a display of unselfconscious expertise.’ —Peter Stanley, The Canberra Times
‘Detailed and engrossing’ —The Newcastle Herald
‘For anyone with an interest in Australian aviation and/or military history’ —Sunday Tasmanian