The Biggest Prison Breakout of WW2

During World War II, in the town of Cowra in central New South Wales, thousands of Japanese prisoners of war were held in a POW camp. On the icy night of August 5th they staged one of the largest prison breakouts in history, launching the only land battle of World War II to be fought on Australian soil. Five Australian soldiers and more than 230 Japanese POWs would die during what became known as The Cowra Breakout.

In this episode historian and podcaster Mat McLachlan joins Dan to tell him this extraordinary story of negligence and complacency, and of authorities too slow to recognise danger before it occurred - and too quick to cover it up when it was too late.

This episode was produced by Mariana Des Forges and it was edited by Thomas Ntinas.

If you'd like to learn more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today!

To download the History Hit app please go to the Android or Apple store.

Hosted on Acast. See for more information.