Thursday 15 October 2009 by Keiko Tamura. No comments
News, AJRP, Australian Japan Research Project

The Australia-Japan Research Project website has been updated with new contents. 

1. Japanese Midget Submarine attack on Sydney Harbour and its aftermath

The AJRP has conducted a study on the aftermath of the Japanese midget submarine attack in Sydney Harbour in 1942 and the research outcome has been added to our website. Dr Tamura, the AJRP project manager, carried out archival and field research in Australia and Japan to collect material and interview some family members of the submariners. The result is an extensive coverage of the series of incidents in Australia and Japan since the submarine attack up to present. We hope you enjoy exploring this issue on our website, which is primarily in English, but there are some bilingual pages in English and Japanese.

The site has sound and moving image files related to the submarine attack as follows:

  • You can listen to the broadcast of the military funeral which was held for the Japanese midget submariners in Sydney. The original broadcast was in English, but the dubbed version in Japanese is also available.
  • You are also able to listen to Prime Minister Koizumi’s speech, which was delivered in May 2002 in Canberra. In it, he referred to the attack and its aftermath.
  • The video file of Mrs Matsuo’s visit to the Australian War Memorial in 1968 will touch many people’s hearts. It depicts a frail elderly mother with a walking stick approaching submarine in which her son commanded and died.

It is hoped that the site provides comprehensive information on the series of incidents and the interactions between Australia and Japan over sixty-five years.

2. Japan-related articles in Wartime by AJRP staff

Over the years, staff of the AJRP have written various Japan-related articles for Wartime, the magazine of the Australian War Memorial. This magazine is published quarterly and has wide readership among veterans, military history enthusiasts and the general public in Australia. Its articles are richly illustrated from the Memorial’s extensive photographic collection. The topics covered by AJRP staff members are diverse: from Japanese soldiers’ experience on the Kokoda Trail, to Japanese war brides in Australia. Now, you can read these articles online on our site.

3. AJRP database entry work

The final work of entering all Japanese savings and pocket books which are housed in the collection of the Australian War Memorial has been completed. The AJRP would like to sincerely thank the dedication of our long-term volunteer, Haruki Yoshida, for his dedication in completing this task.

Suspension of research activities

The AJRP is winding up its activities at the Memorial for the moment. Originally a five-year project, it has run for thirteen. The project’s website will remain, but it will no longer be updated. The project would like to express its deep appreciation to the Japanese Government, particularly  the Japanese Embassy in Canberra,  for its support, and thank very sincerely the many Memorial staff, academics, volunteers and others who have contributed to the project’s success over the years.