In May 1942 New Zealand was invaded.
It was of little strategic value to fight this far from the American mainland and it can be argued that it was in fact counter to the US war effort to expend resources when they were fighting a war they were not winning.
Two things saved New Zealand froma real invasion. A handful of Australian territorials on the Kakoda Trail and the US Navy getting into a fight in the Coral Sea they had little real expectation of winning. Although it uasually assumed that the Japanese had intended to invade Australia next their actual target was New Zealand from which they planned to isolate Australia. The currency for the ocupation had already been printed.
In stead of Japanese, we got Marines. A lot of them never got home again.
From here they left and fought in the Pacific War eventually driving the Japanese Empire back to its own islands;
We asked, they came.
Thankyou very much.