Australian commandos in the Pacific War, 1941-45
By Karl James
Published by New South/AWM
RRP $39.99 in paperback • ISBN 9781742234922
Published in association with the Australian War Memorial (AWM), Double Diamonds traces the Australian commandos force from its formation in 1941 through to the end of WWII. Eight independent companies were raised progressively and subsequently involved in arduous campaigns in the mountains and jungles of Borneo, Timor, Bougainville and New Guinea.
Senior Historian at the AWM, Karl James, has used his position to great effect. The images he chose for this book, from the AWM collection, are unique and compelling, some never before published.
The men who volunteered to join the fledging service were drawn from various walks of life but all were attracted by the mystique surrounding the ‘special forces’. They were trained in irregular and guerrilla warfare, demolitions, advanced field craft and signals work. And it was this training that they put to good use when they went into action in the jungles to attack and disrupt the Japanese communication centres and supply routes.
The Double Diamonds, so named for their distinctive double diamond insignia, were critically important in carrying out reconnaissance in enemy territory and gathering vital information on Japanese troop movements.