British Commonwealth Occupation Forces Plaque

Location of British Commonwealth Occupation Forces Plaque

Shrine of Memories, ANZAC Square
Brisbane QLD 4000

Bronze plaque dedicated to the memory of those from the British Commonwealth Occupation Forces (BCOF) Australian Contingent, who served and died by example in occupation of Japan between 1945 and 1952. The plaque recognises the four services who participated and displays the BCOF insignia.

Inscription

BRITISH COMMONWEALTH OCCUPATION FORCES

AUSTRALIAN CONTINGENT

[RAN] [ARMY]

[BCOF]

[RAAF] [MERCHANT NAVY]

WE SERVED BY EXAMPLE

IN THE

OCCUPATION OF JAPAN

1945 - 1952

IN MEMORY

OF OUR COMRADES

WHO PAID

THE SUPREME SACRIFICE

TO DEMONSTRATE THE MEANING

OF PEACE TO THE WORLD

Conflicts commemorated
  • Second World War, 1939–1945
  • Unit memorials
Memorial type
Place
Commemorative services held
The Shrine is utilised for commemroative events.
Additional information

Participation in the British Commonwealth Occupation Force (BCOF) marked the first time that Australians were involved in the military occupation of a sovereign nation which it had defeated in war. BCOF participation in the Allied occupation force was announced on 31 January 1946, though planning and negotiations had been in progress since the end of the war. The main body of Australian troops arrived in Japan on 21 February.

The entire BCOF force totalled 45,000, from Britain, India, New Zealand, and Australia. About 16,000 Australians served in BCOF, including an infantry contingent of 4,700, base units consisting of 5,300, an air force wing of 2,200, and 130 from the Australian General Hospital. The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) also had a presence in the region as part of the British Pacific Fleet. For two-thirds of the period of occupation the Commonwealth was represented solely by Australians, and throughout its existence BCOF was always commanded by an Australian officer.

The primary objective of BCOF was to enforce the terms of the unconditional surrender that had ended the war the previous September. The task of exercising military government over Japan was the responsibility of the United States forces. BCOF was required to maintain military control and to supervise the demilitarisation and disposal of the remnants of Japan's war-making capacity.

(Source: Australian War Memorial www.awm.gov.au)

Recorded by
QLD War Memorial Register
Date recorded
14 April 2009

Nearby memorials

List all 167 memorials within postcode 4000.