The Great Fear of 1942

On March 1 1942, barely a fortnight after the bombing of Darwin, Cyril William [Bill] Clements, a deck hand on a vessel of the Triabunna fishing fleet, was surprised to be overflown by a Japanese aircraft. She was a float plane, stowed in the bow of the Japanese submarine cruiser I - 25, and launched into a southerly breeze from Oyster Bay by catapault from her foredeck to reconnoitre Hobart for major naval targets. When such things could happen so far south, it was little wonder that Australians feared a Japanese invasion. The late Bill Clements was the adoptive father of David Faber.

Map from Jenkins & Sullivan `Battle Surface: Japan's Submarine War Against Australia 1942 - 44'

 

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