Watching the Sun Rise: Australian Reporting of Japan, 1931 to the Fall of Singapore
Author: Jacqui Murray
Publisher: Lexington Books
Release Date: November 09, 2004
Historians have long claimed that a tradition of fear of Japan dominated Australian thinking about foreign affairs and defense after Japan's defeat of Russia in 1905 and that this fear remained widespread throughout the Australian population until the Pacific War. This study of Australian reporting on Japan challenges that claim by exposing a culture of state censorship, intimidation of the media, and neglect of official public discussion of foreign affairs in the years 1931-1941 which resulted in newspapers, radio, and news reels projecting a collective national consciousness of Japan as a nation of little import-despite very real fears in senior political ranks about Japanese designs on Australia. Jacqui Murray's argument for the Australian media's underestimation of Japan's threat is sustained by close examination of media practices, publications, and broadcasts which clearly show misleading representations of Japan before the Pacific War. Watching the Sun Rise details not only government peace-time media censorship but also war-time propaganda flows from Australian, British, and Japanese sources into the Australian media and examples of cooperation and/or espionage among media personnel.