The epic World War II story of Australia's 75 Squadron - and the 44 days when these brave and barely trained pilots fought alone against the Japanese.
In March and April 1942, RAAF 75 Squadron bravely defended Port Moresby for 44 days when Australia truly stood alone against the Japanese. This group of raw young recruits scrambled ceaselessly in their Kittyhawk fighters to an extraordinary and heroic battle, the story of which has been left largely untold.
The recruits had almost nothing going for them against the Japanese war machine, except for one extraordinary leader named John Jackson, a balding, tubby Queenslander - at 35 possibly the oldest fighter pilot in the world - who said little, led from the front, and who had absolutely no sense of physical fear.
Time and time again this brave group were hurled into battle, against all odds and logic, and succeeded in mauling a far superior enemy - whilst also fighting against the air force hierarchy. After relentless attack, the squadron was almost wiped out by the time relief came, having succeeded in their mission - but also paying a terrible price.
Michael Veitch, actor, presenter and critically acclaimed author, brings to life the incredible exploits and tragic sacrifices of this courageous squadron of Australian heroes.
About the Author
Michael Veitch is a multi-talented writer, performer and presenter. He has an academic background in history but made his name as part of the ABC's cult hit The D Generation, followed by Fast Forward, Full Frontal and more. He is a regular guest presenter and interviewer on ABC morning radio and is the face of ABC television's national weekly arts program, Sunday Arts. In 2006, he pursued his life-long interest in aviation with his first book, Flak, a series of interviews with airmen from the Second World War. The follow-up volume Fly, was released by Bolinda Audio in August 2008.
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Comments about 44 Days : 75 Squadron and the Fight for Australia (MP3):
This latest release by the author is about a little known air battle fought on Australia's doorstep, which lasted only six weeks, and was fought by a handful of barely trained pilots of RAAF 75 Squadron defending Port Moresby in what seemed like a futile attempt to turn the tide against such a mighty aggressor. By early 1942, Japan was quite possibly about to attempt an invasion of Australia. Michael Veitch - comedian, actor, radio and television presenter, as well as author - has created an incredibly carefully researched and sensitive account of this group of heroic young Australian airmen, led by their unlikely squadron commander who seemed almost devoid of fear: John Jackson. Though he was a man of few words, he was unanimously held in the highest esteem by the whole squadron of men he led. By now, we've all become well aware of the great sacrifices made during the Kokoda ground campaign which involved such unbelievable endurance and such an enormous cost in terms of soldiers' lives. However, during the prelude to Kokoda, some of those same ground troops, the 39th Battalion, eventually alongside 75 Squadron, were already defending Port Moresby. Therefore, it's surprising that this story hasn't been the subject of a major, well publicised book release before now, especially when the story is full of such drama and intrigue, as we find in Michael Veitch's telling of this tale of unbelievable heroism. While it is a long overdue account of this unique set of events in Australia's military history, the way the book has been so expertly written and narrated is undoubtedly a remarkable achievement in itself.
Format: MP3 CD
Number Of Pages: 1
Published: 26th July 2016
Dimensions (cm): 12.2 x 13.2
Weight (kg): 0.07
Edition Type: Unabridged