The Second World War

Prisoners of the Italians and Germans

About 8,000 Australians became prisoners of war of the Germans and Italians in the Second World War. They included airmen and soldiers of the 6th, 7th and 9th Divisions.

Most remained captive for more than three years. They endured cold, hunger and a spirit-crushing boredom. All put their lives on hold while awaiting a fate they could not control.

AWM P03075.001
Flight Sergeant John Ansell, 460 Squadron, RAAF.