Second World War 1939 - 1945
The Second World War was the most destructive conflict in human history. For Australia, the conflicted lasted for six years, from 3 September 1939 to 15 August 1945.
Defeat of Nazi Germany, fascist Italy, and expansionist militarist Japan came at a heavy cost: at least 60 million people died, tens of millions were displaced, and areas of Europe, Asia, and the Pacific were devastated as a result of the war.
Almost a million Australians served, over half of whom saw overseas service. Forty thousand Australian servicemen and servicewomen died in the conflict, and more than 30,000 suffered as prisoners of war, while 1,500 Australian civilians were interned by the Japanese in Asia and the Pacific. Tens of thousands of Australians were wounded or injured. Moral injuries were uncounted.