Last battle of ww2 in the pacific
Okinawa: The Last Battle of World War II by Robert LeckieI enjoyed Robert Leckies autobiography, Helmet for My Pillow (one of the biographies that inspired the HBO miniseries The Pacific). So when I found out that he had written a book on the battle of Okinawa, Okinawa: The Last Battle of World War II (1996), before I was scheduled for my second visit to the island I knew it would be my background reading there. Leckie points out some astonishing facts: Never before...had there been an invasion armada the equal of the 1,600 seagoing ships carrying 545,000 American GIs and Marines that steamed across the Pacific. In firepower, troops, and tonnage it eclipsed even the more famous D day in Normandy. Furthermore, 100,000 Japanese soldiers and 80,000 (many by suicide) were killed. The Japanese lost 7,830 aircraft and 180 ships. The US saw 12,520 killed (5,000 at sea-the most ever for the Navy) and 37,000 wounded. The invading force lost 800 aircraft and 36 ships. He charts the movements of the invading force as well as those of the Japanese. Particularly unnerving are all of the kikusui defensive kamikaze attacks the largest with 300 at one time as well as sacrificing their largest ship the Yamato, which was sunk before it could do any damage. There were fast hard to control single engine planes called baka bombs (baka means stupid in Japanese) being deployed, sometimes with great damage. There were many descriptions of valor. For example, Desmond Doss, a conscientious objector, who joined as a medic was awarded the Medal of Honor for his courageous actions in the campaign. There are some fascinating descriptions of battles and attacks: 20 Japanese twin engine bombers attacked an airfield late in the war and only one got through and crash landed and only 6 of the crew of 14 survived and attacked the field with grenades and blew up eight planes, damaged another 26, blew up two fuel dumps with 70,000 gallons of fuel, killed two and injured 18 before being hunted down and killed. Leckie adds an analysis of the significance of the battle, which he narrates authoritatively that the Japanese were defeated at the time, but no one knew it, which I think is a bit misleading. That analysis I think was written a bit too authoritatively in my opinion. However, overall I think it was well researched and a compelling narrative.
The Second World War: The War in the Pacific
Battle of Okinawa: The Bloodiest Battle of the Pacific War
Army and U. Marine Corps troops descended on the Pacific island of Okinawa for a final push towards Japan. The invasion was part of Operation Iceberg, a complex plan to invade and occupy the Ryukyu Islands, including Okinawa. By the time American troops landed on Okinawa, the war on the European front was nearing its end. After obliterating Japanese troops in the brutal Battle of Iwo Jima , they set their sights on the isolated island of Okinawa, their last stop before reaching Japan. They knew if Okinawa fell, so would Japan. As dawn arrived on April 1, morale was low among American troops as the Fifth Fleet launched the largest bombardment ever to support a troop landing to soften Japanese defenses.
Private First Class Eugene B. Sledge of the 1st Marine Division had been fighting in on the miserable island of Okinawa for six weeks. Every crater was half full of water, and many of them held a Marine corpse. The bodies lay pathetically just as they had been killed, half submerged in muck and water, rusting weapons still in hand. Swarms of big flies hovered about them. Army and Marine troops would long retain haunting memories of that island only miles southwest of Japan. It was called Okinawa.
Okinawa is located just miles km south of Kyushu , and its capture was regarded as a vital precursor to a ground invasion of the Japanese home islands. In addition, at least , civilians were either killed in combat or were ordered to commit suicide by the Japanese military. - Ground units : Tenth Army.
The Japanese rolled through the Pacific at will. Although more symbolic than anything, it showed the Japanese that the United States was in the fight. The next crucial move took place two months later, on August 7, when the 1st Marine Division invaded Guadalcanal. The struggle for Guadalcanal lasted for nearly eight months and combined sea, land, and air forces in a joint effort for the first time in history. It was another major defeat for the Japanese. By the situation in the Pacific was looking brighter, and there was hope for optimism. By November , there was reason to believe the tide of the war was turning in favor of the United States.
This is a list of military engagements of World War II encompassing land, naval, and air engagements as well as campaigns, operations, defensive lines and sieges. Campaigns generally refer to broader strategic operations conducted over a large bit of territory and over a long period. Battles generally refer to short periods of intense combat localised to a specific area and over a specific period. However, use of the terms in naming such events is not consistent. For example, the Battle of the Atlantic was more or less an entire theatre of war, and the so-called battle lasted for the duration of the entire war.