From the desk of the NZ PM, the Right Honourable Mr Bruce.
28 November 1943
Philippines liberated! Western China captured! Japanese army crushed! Beijing falls! ANZACs triumph!
Australia led the naval invasion of southern Philippines and then the push through the islands to capture Manila and the rest (1 on map).
New Zealand led the breakout from the port captured in southern China with the armour pushing up the coast and the infantry pushing inland (2 on map). Most of the Japanese army perished as it was trapped between the Chinese to the west and the ANZACs to the east.
With Japanese casualties caused by the ANZAC forces now exceeding one million, the popular press is full of stories about what ANZACs can do under their own generals. Staff officers instead point to the successful Australian submarines sinking transports laden with troops and to most front-line divisions having some tanks, which the Japanese cannot counter.
Diplomatic considerations have now arisen. China is not part of the Allies and has been fighting its own war against Japan. Whereas the Philippines was liberated and is again a US puppet (as US is in Allies), Western China is now controlled by New Zealand, which the Chinese must hate. If the Japanese are driven off the mainland and make a separate peace with China, will all those territories revert to Chinese control?
How will the Japanese home islands be invaded? The Japanese navy is bruised but still intact (about 7 carriers) and is defending its home waters. While the US and UK navies are larger, they are not concentrated on Japanese home waters but are largely devoted to defensive convoy escort roles. So, even with the Japanese army largely beaten, how can the home islands be invaded? Only time will tell…