Political map of Australia, New Zealand & the Southwest Pacific 19 February 1942 (Bombing of Darwin): Allied efforts under ABDA (American-British-Dutch-Australian Command) proved unable to halt the Japanese offensive. In mid-February the vital British naval base of Singapore surrendered (Battle of Singapore), followed 12 days later by the sinking of the main ABDA naval force when it tried to stop the Japanese invasion of Java (Battle of the Java Sea). Inbetween the Japanese bombed Darwin (Bombing of Darwin), the first and largest foreign attack on Australia in history.