After landing at Lingayen Gulf on the largest of the Philippine islands, Luzon, at the end of 1941, the Japanese had succeeded in forcing an Allied surrender by April of 1942. Two years later, the United States turned its attention again to the Philippines with the aim of retaking the territory from the Japanese occupying force.1 As the Allied fleet closed on the Philippines in late 1944 early 1945 a number of major engagements unfolded.
Australia contributed a significant naval force to this effort, including Tribal Class destroyer Arunta, County Class heavy cruisers Australia (II) and Shropshire, River Class frigate Gascoyne, Armed Merchant Cruisers Kanimbla, Manoora and Westralia, Improved Tribal Class destroyer Warramunga, and Grimsby Class sloop Warrego (II).2 These ships were part of the Bombardment Fire and Support Group assisting the American invasion of Luzon at Lingayen Gulf.
Japanese kamikaze attacks, first used during the American landing on the island of Leyte in 1944, would be used again at Lingayen. Sustained aerial attacks by the Japanese against the Allied Fleet saw the RAN Flagship HMAS Australia (II) hit five times.3
 Australian War Memorial London, “Lingayen Gulf: Fight for the Philippines, 1945,” Australian War Memorial London, viewed 04/04/2016 http://www.awmlondon.gov.au/battles/lingayen-gulf (www.awmlondon.gov.au).
 Royal Australian Navy, “Lingayen Gulf 1945,” Royal Australian Navy Battle Honours, viewed 04/04/2016, http://www.navy.gov.au/node/3832 (www.navy.gov.au).
 Australian War Memorial London, “Lingayen Gulf.”