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PLAQUE NO. 53 ... ISURAVA

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The original Isurava village located near here, was defended by 50 Papuans and 1,000 Australians against 6,000 Japanese. The Japanese who had just captured Kokoda village, attacked Isurava from three directions; the high ground to the west, directly along the Kokoda trail and 3 kilometres to the east on the other side of Eora Creek (660 metre below here). The thin Australian line held on all fronts despite continual attack between 26 to 30 August 1942. Australia's first Victoria Cross of the South-West Pacific was won here by Private Bruce Bingsbury on the 29 August.

Eventually the overwhelming Japanese numbers, especially in the West forced the Australians to withdraw towards Alolo, the battle of Isurava lost the Japanese four valuable days and a great number of casualties. Both these factors ultimately contributed to their retreat on the hills above Port Moresby.

 



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