The Japanese entered the war by attacking
Pearl Harbour (a US Naval base) in the Pacific on 7th December
1941. Air raids and landings were also launched against Hong
Kong, Thailand, the Philippines, Malaya and Singapore. Burma
was invaded on 21 st January 1942, followed by the Dutch East
Indies (Indonesia) on the 14th February.
The Japanese used
their naval and air power to support their ground forces.
Lightly armed, dressed and equipped, their infantry frequently
used only hand carts for transport. In this way, using tracks,
often through dense jungle they by-passed their enemies who
were tied to main roads by their motorised transport. By using
novel jungle warfare tactics the Japanese caught the Allies
totally by surprise. In just over 6 months the campaign was