2 January: New Guinea: Australian and US forces take Buna after 6-week campaign.

14 January: Morocco: SYMBOL Conference. Churchill and Roosevelt meet in Casablanca. Agreed that 30 per cent of war material should go to the Pacific Theater.

16-31 January: New Georgia: The Battle of Wau. General Okabe launches attack on Wau but is repulsed.

22 January: New Guinea: The Battle of Buna, Gona and Sananda. Australian forces defeat Japanese and occupy the garrison Sanananda thus ending one of the hardest fought land battles of the Pacific War.

23 January: North Africa: Montgomery’s Eighth Army takes Tripoli.

24 January: Morocco: At Casablanca President Roosevelt demands unconditional surrender by Japan and calls for their barbaric leaders to be punished.


2 February: Burma: General Wingate and 3,000 Chindits cross into Burma to conduct guerilla operations behind Japanese lines in an known as Long Range Penetration 1.

Russia: General Paulus surrenders to General Zhukov at Stalingrad.

8 February: Guadalcanal: Japanese forces secretly withdraw from Guadalcanal. 32,000 out of the 43,000 Japanese troops deployed died during the campaign – a death toll 20 times higher than the 1,592 American troops killed.

Russia: Soviet troops retake Kursk.

MARCH 1943

2-4 March: New Guinea: The Battle of the Bismarck Sea. Japanese troop transports bound for Lae in southeast New Guinea destroyed.

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