Instead of training for jungle warfare, the young Diggers guarding Port Moresby are used at labourers at wharves and airstrip.
The untested Militia troops of the 39th, 49th and 53rd Battalions have formed the garrison at Port Moresby since January but their leaders have shown little foresight in preparing them for the increasingly likelihood of jungle fighting. They are yet to fire a shot in anger. But their leaders are squandering their chance to learn the jungle warfare techniques the Japanese have already mastered.
They spend most of their time toiling in the tropical sun building defences at the Moresby airstrip or as navvies loading and unloading transport ships in Moresby's harbour.