Sunday, August 16, 2009

New comment on "Thoughts on the Kokoda crash"

rsc186 has left a new comment on your post "Thoughts on the Kokoda crah":

Interesting thoughts on the role Kokoda plays in the life of Australians. Like Gallipoli this has fallen victim to the adventure tour market. The vast majority of Australians that take on the challenge of Kokoda do so for the right reasons and that is to honor the men who fought on this piece of turf, be they Australian, Papua New Guinean or even Japanese. Kokoda is special on many fronts not lease of all because of the use of Conscripts. These conscripts were supposed to be only used in the Defence of Australia. To many this was taken to be the mainland, with PNG being an Australian protectorate the men could and were sent north of the cape, many found this to be unfair and deceitful. I am an ex-Serviceman who has served overseas in Iraq, Africa and the Pacific and have a deep seated respect for those who have played a role in conflict. My grandfather also fought here in PNG and for this I am very proud.
I have gone to the Lae cemetery and commend those responsible for maintaining this piece of sacred ground; they are doing a great job. I have walked the Bulldog track and recommend this to anyone who wants to better understand the difficulties of building a road through this part of the country, not to mention the amazing terrain that you get to traverse.
Kokoda is important in Australia's military and social histories as are many other sites in PNG and the world. The Australians were the first fighting force to defeat the Japanese, on land, at Milne Bay. Milne Bay could easily have been the point to where the middle class of Australia start their pilgrimage if only an adventure tour operator had focused on this area.

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