Army bombers were flown to Port Darwin, Australia, and the ships that were undamaged after the attack were moved south. After the destruction of the Navy yards at Cavite, the remaining II naval patrol bombers were flown to the Netherlands East Indies, The ground forces were left with little or no air support. The Japanese, having control of the air over the Philippines, began to mass their troops for the capture of the islands. The planes represented over 10 percent of the total U. The pilots and crews were well trained and lacked only combat experience.
The medium tank is a Type 94 , with a mm. It had a speed of 18 to 20 miles an hour, was manned by a crew of 4, weighed 15 tons, and was powered by a diesel engine. The Japanese forces moved down Luzon forcing the defending U. On 30 December a large-scale attack was launched and the U. After another enemy attack they fell back twenty miles farther. A secondary enemy attack at Tarlac failed to achieve important gains.
The northern U. All troops were beginning to converge in the vicinity of Manila and the Bataan Peninsula. Manila was declared an open city on the following day and the remains of the naval base at Cavite were blown up to prevent its supplies from falling into enemy hands. As the Japanese advanced, the defending forces withdrew toward the Bataan Peninsula.
The rugged terrain, protected flanks, and restricted maneuvering room on Bataan limited the enemy's ability to employ large numbers of troops. Preparations for the defense of the peninsula were intensified and the stocks of supplies jvere increased.
On 1 January the Japanese entered Manila and the U. S, troops withdrew toward Bataan. Army supplies were either moved to Bataan and Corregidor or destroyed. The remaining forces on Bataan, including some 15, U. The food, housing, and sanitation problems were greatly increased by the presence of over 20, civilian refugees. All troops were placed on half-rations. On 1 February the Pacific Fleet of the U. Navy began a series of offensive raids against the most prominent Japanese bases in the Central Pacific area.
The first of the attacks was carried out against Kwajalein, Taroa, Wotje, and other atolls in the Marshall Islands, as well as Makin in the Gilbert Islands. On 24 February a task force made a successful air and naval bombardment against Wake. The aircraft carrier Enterprise, two cruisers, and seven destroyers comprised the task force attacking the island of Wake. The Enterprise and two cruisers were the main ships used during the Marcus Island attack, 1, miles from Japan. Losses to the U. This was the standard Japanese heavy machine gun top.
Japanese firing a mm. Called a mountain infantry gun, it was replaced by a later model. Light and easily handled, it was very steady in action. When used as a regimental cannon company weapon it was issued on the basis of four per regiment. The Bataan Peninsula, 32 miles long and 20 miles across at the widest portion, is covered with dense woods and thick jungle growth. Through the center runs a range of mountains. The limited area and difficult terrain made the fighting more severe and added to the problems of the advancing Japanese.
However, the situation became steadily worse for the defending troops and on 9 April the forces were surrendered to the Japanese. In a small combined operation in the western Pacific by the U. Navy and the Army Air Forces, sixteen planes took off from the carrier Hornet, nautical miles from Tokyo, to bomb the city for the first time during the war. The Japanese were completely surprised because, even though they had received a radio warning, they were expecting Navy planes which would have to be launched from a carrier closer to Tokyo, and therefore would not reach the city on 18 April.
About noon on 18 April the medium bombers from the Hornet reached Tokyo and near-by cities. After dropping their bombs they flew on to China where they ran out of fuel before reaching their designated landing fields. The crews of only two of the planes fell into Japanese hands. The others lived in the mountains for about ten days after assembling and were later returned to the United States.
The news of the raid raised morale in the United States and while the damage inflicted was not great, it proved to the Japanese that they needed additional bases to the east to protect the home islands of Japan. The Japanese commander insisted upon unconditional surrender of all the troops in the Philippines and was furious when he learned that only the U. The forces on Corregidor held their fire until the captured Bataan troops were removed from the area. This picture was reproduced from an illustration which appeared in a captured Japanese publication.
Over 50, prisoners were held at this camp.
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A few U. With food, water, and supplies practically exhausted and no adequate facilities for caring for the wounded, and with Japanese forces landing on Corregidor, the situation for the U. The commander offered to surrender the island forts on Corregidor to the Japanese. When this was refused and with the remaining troops in danger of being wiped out, all the U. Couriers were sent to the various island commanders and by 17 May all organized resistance in the Philippines had ceased.
Corregidor's armament comprised eight inch guns, twelve inch mortars, two inch guns, five 6-inch guns, twenty mm. The fixed gun emplacements were in open concrete pits and exposed to aerial attack and artillery shelling. The Japanese kept up strong concentrations of fire against the defenses on Corregidor until most of the defending guns were knocked out. The 11, surviving troops on Corregidor became prisoners of war and on 28 May were evacuated to a prison stockade in Manila. The fall of Corregidor on 6 May marked the end of the first phase of enemy operations.
The Japanese had bases controlling routes to India, Australia, and many islands in the Central and South Pacific and were preparing for their next assaults against the Allies. This picture is reproduced from an illustration which appeared in a captured Japanese publication. The Japanese had been fighting in China since the early 's. Control over the latter gave Japan rich supplies of rubber, oil, and minerals—resources badly needed by the Japanese to carry on the offensive against the Allies.
In March the headquarters of the Allied forces in the Southwest Pacific was established at Melbourne, The Netherlands East Indies had fallen to the enemy and it was necessary to build up a force in the Southwest Pacific area to combat the Japanese threat to Australia. The Japanese air attack on Darwin in February proved that the north coast of Australia was too open to attack by enemy planes and thereafter the Allies concentrated their forces along the eastern coast from Melbourne to Townsville. The Japanese planned to strengthen their bases in the Southwest Pacific and sever the line of communications between the United States and Australia.
One enemy task iorce, sent to take Tulagi in the southern Solomons, was attacked at sea and lost a number of ships, but nevertheless landed troops and captured Tulagi. Another task force intended for Port Moresby did not reach its objective because of an attack by U.
This battle, called the Battle of the Coral Sea was fought on May and was the first carrier against carrier battle in history. The Lexington was so badly damaged that she had to be sunk by torpedoes from U. Both the U. The opposing forces withdrew at about the same time and the action can be considered a draw. Following this battle the enemy no longer tried to send troops to Port Moresby by sea, an advantage to the Allies who began to develop the area of northeastern Australia and New Guinea.
Instead, the Japanese sent troops overland to drive on Port Moresby and by 28 July had captured Kokoda, key to the mountain pass through the Owen Stanley Range. Cargo nets on a transport could be used with a great degree of efficiency as they could accommodate far more troops at one time than ladders. After firing, artillerymen open the breech of their mm. Fleet in a major battle, if possible, and at the same time to orrupy Midway Island. Fleet, turned of the impending attack, divided us ships into two carrier task forces consisting in all of 3 aircraft carriers, 8 cruisers, and 14 destroyers.
Twenty-five submarines covered all the approaches and heavy and medium bombers were flown to Midway to supplement the air power on the island. At the Battle of Midway the Yorktown was badly damaged and while being towed was torpedoed and sunk by an enemy submarine. After losing all four of its aircraft carriers and planes, the Japanese fleet abandoned the assault and retired from the scene.
During the battle the main body of the fleet had come no closer than miles to Midway. As in the Battle of the Coral Sea, surface vessels made no contact during the engagement. The Battle of Midway, one of the decisive battles in the Pacific, stopped Japanese expansion to the east, and Midway remained in U. From this time on the balance of power in the Pacific shifted steadily in favor of the Allies. On 3 and 4 June the Japanese attacked the Army installations there.
Of the two bombings, the first resulted in little damage, but the second considerably damaged ground installations. On 4 June the Japanese landed a battalion on Attu, and on the 6th troops landed on Kiska. Since most of the available U. Both the United States and Japan learned that, because of the extremely bad weather conditions, this area was one of the most unsuitable in the world for combat operations and the Aleutians were not used as an important base for operations. Great distances had to be traveled in Australia by rail and motor convoys, many miles of which were through barren or waste land such as shown in these photographs.
Troops arriving in Australia were prepared for transshipment to the enemy-held islands during the latter part of Since the number of troops in the Southwest Pacific was limited during the early stages, future operations were based on the movement of air force units from island to island to gain air superiority, provide cover for the advancing ground forces, and isolate enemy positions.
As the ground forces moved to a new position, airfields were to be established for the next jump. Some of the first enemy positions to be taken were near Port Moresby and in the Solomons. After receiving additional training in Australia, troops were sent out to carry the offensive to Japanese-held bases. Men cleaning their weapons aboard a transport bottom. Some troops arrived in New Caledonia directly from the United States while others went by way of Australia. Small infantry bivouac area, showing the native-type huts occupied by some of the U. Huts of this type were used as troop quarters and as office buildings since the material for construction was easily accessible and the huts were also an effective camouflage measure against enemy aerial observation.
It could operate on land or water and was often used to bring supplies ashore where there were no ports or harbors available for larger craft. Supplies loaded from ships onto the Ducks could unload at the supply dumps, saving the extra handling involved when lighters or similar craft were used. This vehicle could carry approximately 25 men and their equipment or a 5,pound payload. Throughout the Pacific natives were used whenever possible for construction work on airfields, to transport supplies and equipment, and in all other types of work calling for unskilled labor.
An Australian sniper in a camouflaged position during training bottom. Every effort was made to teach all troops all methods of jungle warfare so that they could better combat the enemy who was well trained in jungle fighting and living. By October twenty-five men were completing six vehicles a day on this assembly line. The hilt of the saber which shows on the right side of the pack is that of an Australian cavalry saber issued in lieu of a machete.
By August the Allies had established a series of defensive island bases, along an arc reaching from Honolulu to Sydney, which served as steppingstones for the supply system and the springboard for later offensive operations. The Japanese threat to these islands in late summer put the Allies on the tactical offensive, strategic defensive. Rabaul, the principal Japanese base in the Southwest Pacific, became the objective of a two-pronged Allied counterattack.
One prong, starting with Guadalcanal, was directed up the chain of Solomons; the other prong, starting from Port Moresby, was directed through northeastern New Guinea toward New Britain. Victory in Papua, John Miller, jr. Ciowl, The Seizure of the Gilberts and Marshalls, all three volumes in preparation for the same scries.
The Guadalcanal Campaign, first in the Solomon ladder, was undertaken with extremely limited means. Ground forces, aided by the Navy and Air Forces, fought tenaciously, bringing the campaign to an end on 21 February , a little over six months after its inception. Advancing further up the Solomon chain, the Allies made unopposed landings in the Russells on 21 February. Construction of airstrips, a radar station, a motor torpedo boat base, and facilities to accommodate a large quantity of supplies was immediately undertaken there.
In preparation for the assault on the Munda airfield, New Georgia, combat troops underwent rigorous training during the following months. Before this assault, Rendova was occupied on 30 June against only light opposition. This island provided gun positions and a staging point for the thrust against Munda Point two days later.
Japan's Last Bid for Victory: The Invasion of India, 1944
Munda airfield was captured on 5 August and by the 25th all organized resistance on New Georgia Island ceased The next objective was Vella Lavella where landings were made on the southern end of the island on 15 August without opposition. Simultaneously, the lesser islands in the New Georgia group were occupied and the enemy evacuated Vella Lavella during the night of October. The New Georgia group operation was closed on 15 October.
On the night of October , New Zealand troops landed on the Treasury Islands which were to be used as a staging area for landing craft. On 28 October a U. Marine battalion executed diversionary landings on Choiseul in preparation for a surprise attack at Bougainville on 1 November. By the end of the year a naval base and three airfields had become operational on Bougainville. No further offensive action was undertaken by U. Naval engagements and air attacks throughout this entire period effected considerable damage on the enemy.
In the latter part of September , nearly two months after the invasion of Guadalcanal, the initial Allied blow of the second prong was made in Papua. On 16 September the enemy advance in Papua was halted at a point less than 20 miles from Port Moresby where it was met by stiffened Australian resistance. American troops were rushed into Port Moresby by plane and boat, and a counterattack was launched in the last days of September.
The enemy fell back to Buna and, while the Australian forces laboriously made their way over the steep mountain trails, American troops were flown overland toward Jaure. During this campaign U. By 23 January organized resistance had been wiped out, ending the Papua Campaign. While the ground forces were fighting the enemy in Papua, U. In the latter part of January, American troops followed by Australian troops, were flown over the mountains to engage the enemy at threatened points along his advance from his defense bases.
Fighting over the rugged terrain in this area was slow and costly. Salamaua was overrun on 12 September, and when troops entered Lae on 16 September the enemy had fled into the hills to the north. To prevent the Japanese from attempting further advances between September and December, pressure was maintained by the Allies in a slow move toward Ma-dang on the northeast coast of New Guinea.
New moves to isolate Rabaul started on 15 December, when troops landed on Arawe on the southern coast of New Britain, and on 26 December, when landings were made on both sides of Cape Gloucester. At the end of the year Rabaul was under constant air attack by U. Meanwhile, the plan of operation against the Japanese in the Aleutians was to attack Attu in an attempt to compel them to evacuate Kiska.
Attu was invaded on 11 May and for eighteen days a bitter and bloody fight ensued. The fighting ended on 30 May but mopping-up operations continued for several days. When Kiska was invaded on 15 August the island was deserted; the Japanese had withdrawn. While the enemy was fully occupied in the Southwest Pacific, an invasion of the Gilbert Islands was made on the Makin and Tarawa Atolls on 20 November.
This was the first in a series of moves to recover Japanese-held bases that could be used to further the Allied advance toward the heart of the Japanese Empire. Only moderate opposition was met at Makin and by evening of the 23d its capture was complete. At Tarawa much stronger resistance was encountered but was destroyed by the 24th, except for isolated groups which were later eliminated. Other islands in both atolls were occupied during the following days. Lunga River can be seen in right foreground.
The airfield, in the process of being built by the Japanese in the summer of , was the immediate objective of the marines who landed on the island on 7 August Gavutu Island, on left, is connected with Tanambogo by a stone causeway and is about a mile and three quarters to the east of Tulagi Island. These islands form the western side of Gavutu Harbour where the Japanese had developed a seaplane base. Occupation of the island group, Tulagi and its satellites, was accomplished in three days- The enemy garrisons were wiped out except for about 70 survivors who made their way to Florida Island.
Mopping-up operations on Florida continued for a few weeks. The mortar is an mm. Ml on mount Ml. On the evening of 8 August, the airfield on Guadalcanal was in U. During the following weeks enemy attempts to retake the airfield were repulsed. On 7 October six Marine battalions attacked westward to prevent the enemy from establishing positions on the east bank of the Matanikau River. Although this weapon was primarily used for operations in mountainous terrain, it was capable of engaging antitank targets. Several men and a plane can be seen at the bow of the ship.
This aircraft carrier, patrolling near Guadalcanal, was struck by three torpedoes from enemy submarines. Despite efforts of her crew, fires and explosions made such a shambles of the ship that she had to be sunk by her own men. Smoke from bomb strikes can be seen in the background. This ram was part of a series of air attacks on the enemy during the fight for Guadalcanal.
Boeing Hying Fortress heavy bomber B-I7. The USS Hornet after a Japanese dive bomber hit the signal deck; note Japanese dive bomber over the ship and the Japanese torpedo bombing plane on left top. The USS Enterprise, damaged during the one-day battle of Santa Cruz when a great Japanese task force advancing toward Guadalcanal was intercepted by a much weaker American task force bottom.
The American ships were forced to withdraw but the enemy turned and retired to the north instead of pursuing them. Japanese bombing at first was amazingly accurate. Smoking ruins are all that remain of an airplane hangar after a direct hit top. Marines extinguish fire destroying a burning Grumman Wildcat fighter by the bucket brigade method bottom. The raid also destroyed most of the ready ammunition available at the time. Four mm. MS antitank guns on the beach bottom. On 13 October sorely needed reinforcements for the malaria-ridden marines started to arrive, and by the end of the year U.
The Japanese situation on the island had deteriorated rapidly by this time, partly because of the costly defeats suffered while attempting to bring in supplies and replacements. A group of eleven transports proceeding to Guadalcanal were intercepted by aircraft from Henderson Field. Seven ships were sunk or gutted by fire. Four were damaged and were later destroyed near Tassafaronga Point where they had been beached. This transport struck an Allied mine in Pallikula Bay.
Espiritu Santo Island, 26 October Of the 4, troops aboard, only two men were lost; however, vitally needed equipment and stores went to the bottom with the ship. Trails such as this made the use of chains on wheeled vehicles imperative top. Engineers, constructing a heavy-traffic bridge across the Matan-ikau River, lay planking over framework of palm tree logs bottom , Advance on Guadalcanal was difficult and slow.
Troops cleared the areas from which the final drive was to begin and pressure slowly increased against the enemy until the offensive was in full swing. This trail, having many grades approaching 40 degrees, was slick and dangerous after heavy rains and was of little use for heavier vehicles. Note the use of steel helmets as cooking vessels. Fighting during the first part of the month had been bitter; the enemy had taken advantage of the numerous north-south ridges and streams to establish a strong defensive position.
On the 15th a loud speaker was set up on this hill and the Japanese were told to send an officer to arrange for a surrender. There was no response to the order. In the absence of reliable radio communications, wire communications were heavily relied upon. The EE-8 field telephone and the sound-powered telephone were used for long and short distances, respectively. Native carriers bringing supplies through the jungles into the hills top ; boat filled with radio equipment being pushed through a narrow, shallow portion of the Matanikau River. The boat line established on this river was called the "Pusha Maru" bottom.
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The supplies first had to be brought by boat up the shallow river and then carried over the trails which were passable only for men on foot. During January the enemy situation became hopeless and some senior Japanese commanders began deserting their troops. The jeep, converted into an ambulance used to transport patients to the rear areas, could carry three litters and one sitting patient top.
Casualties being unloaded near new bridge construction. The first part of their trip was in flat bottom boats pulled through shallow rapids; the latter part was made in outboard motor boats bottom. The procedure for moving supplies forward for the most part was reversed for the evacuation of the wounded. In mid-January ground force units attacked Mount Austen, the southern anchor of the enemy's position.
While some Army units pushed through the jungle in an enveloping maneuver designed to cut off the enemy at Kokumbona, other Marine and Army units advanced along the coastal road. Supply dump which was set up on Kokumbona beach after pushing the enemy back; note shell and bomb craters which were used as foxholes by the troops bottom. The enveloping movement trapped several enemy units at Kokumbona which were then quickly destroyed.
By the end of the month U. The Guadalcanal Campaign was a costly experience for the enemy. In addition to the loss of many warships and hundreds of planes with experienced pilots, the Japanese expended some two and one-half divisions of their best troops. The Guadalcanal Campaign drew to a close shortly after two U.
The enemy had committed at least 36, men on Guadalcanal. Of these, some 14, were killed or drowned while attempting to land; 9, died of sickness, starvation, or wounds; 1, were captured; and about 13, were evacuated. Sunlight Field can be seen across Renard Sound. Unopposed landings in the Russell Islands, located about sixty miles northwest of Guadalcanal, were made on 21 February By early evening all elements of the landing force could communicate by telephone, the troops had dug themselves into defensive positions, and outposts and observation posts had been established.
Construction of roads, airfields, and boat bases began in February and by 15 April the first of the two airfields was ready for operation. The torpedo boat base at Lingatu Wern-ham Cove went into operation on 25 February. During the tactical offensive of the U. By 16 March, 15, troops of all services had reached the Russells. Beach and antiaircraft defenses, including long-range and fire-control radar, mm.
The Allied base there was ready to support further advances northward. Only a few miles south of Munda Poin m New Georgia, Rendova was first to be occupied in strength to provide positions for mm. This operation was covered by fighter planes which shot down more than a hundred Japanese aircraft in a few days. The landing on Rendova, made on 30 June, met with light resistance.
Fire from enemy batteries on near-by Munda Point was effectively neutralized by naval bombardment. The later need for a dual-purpose weapon which could be fired against both aerial and ground targets led to the development of the mm. As soon as the Munda airfield and other strategically important points on New Georgia were taken, preparations were to be made for the capture of Kolombangaia.
It was anticipated that these forces would be sufficient to seize the airfield and other objectives within thirty days, but because of the strong Japanese defenses encountered, reinforcements were ordered to New Georgia in mid-July to supplement the initial landing. The first man on the left is armed with a. Strong enemy defenses, mud, dense jungle, and inaccurate maps all combined to slow the advance.
On 25 August, twenty days after the airfield was captured, all organized resistance on New Georgia ceased. During this operation Allied planes destroyed an estimated enemy aircraft at a cost of 93 Allied planes. The next step up the Solomon ladder became Vella Lavella instead of Kolombangara Island which was bypassed. While some units were still fight. Earlier in September Americans had moved north on Vella Lavella driving the small enemy garrison into the northwestern part of the island.
The results of executing a landing on Vella Lavella and cutting the enemy's supply and reinforcement lines to Kolombangara and other lesser islands which were bypassed became apparent when one enemy position after another was abandoned, or easily neutralized by U. Arundel was one of the lesser islands in the New Georgia group, located between Rendova and Kolombangara.
Without success the Japanese continually attempted to reinforce then- remaining garrisons in the New Georgia group of islands. Rifle in right foreground is a. The dense jungle on Arundel afforded the men excellent concealment from Japanese pilots. Before the New Georgia operation came to a close, the next phase of the Solomon campaign had begun. During the latter half of September , before the New Georgia operation had ended, the Air Forces turned its attention to the Bougainville area. Prior to the landing on Bougainville, the Treasury Islands were seized and developed as a staging area for landing craft, and diversionary landings were made on Choiseul in preparation for a surprise attack at Bougainville.
Enemy iction and heavy surf look their toll of many boats at the water edge. Marines, supplies, and equipment landed from the open bow of the ship to reinforce the men on the beachhead established on 1 November The troops that landed on the north shore of Empress Augusta Bay encountered only slight initial resistance and losses were considered negligible.
Excellent air support for the assault was rendered by both carrier and land-based planes. LCV taking drums of gasoline to transports headed for Bougainville bottom. After the enemy had been driven off of Guadalcanal, efforts were directed toward improving the defensive strength of the island and establishing a base that could support further operations in the Solomon chain.
Artillery fire, prior to an attack by the infantry, was effectively used against the Japanese system of defense, usually consisting of well-dug-in, concealed foxholes, equipped with a high percentage of automatic weapons. Note collapsible rubber raft LCR on side of transport. Before the assault on Bougainville, combat troops underwent rigorous training based upon lessons learned in the Guadalcanal Campaign. One of the early objectives on the island was to establish a road block astride the Buretoni Mission-Piva trail, which led inland from one of the beaches.
The road block would serve to deny the enemy use of the trail, the main route of access from the east to an Allied position. Amphibian tractor, LVT l , passing men who have stopped to rest bottom. The advance on foot progressed at a rate of yards an hour. The Japanese resisted the advance using light machine guns and "knee mortars.
The barrage balloons over the LST's in the background of bottom picture helped to protect the ships from Japanese dive bombers. Balloons had been let down because of heavy rains. So rapidly were troops and equipment sent in that by the middle of November 34, men and 23, tons of supplies had been put ashore. Fuel-dump fire raging on near-by Puruata Island; note wrecked landing craft in foreground top. Fire and wreckage can be seen in background of the mm. Again on 21 November the same area was struck and fires continued all night, this time destroying a trailer loaded with 3, rounds of mortar ammunition and artillery propelling charges.
By the end of the year three airfields had been put into operation. The mission of the forces on the island at this time was to maintain a defensive perimeter, approximately ten miles long and five miles deep, guarding installations in the Empress Augusta Bay area. This gun was an automatic, recoil-operated, belt-fed, air-cooled machine gun top. Taking time out to make a batch of fudge, these men are using mess kits as cooking pans. Note treatment of identification tags dog tags on center man. Binding the edges of the tags eliminated the noise and made them more comfortable bottom.
Instead of infantrymen slugging it out on the ground, land-based bombers neutralized enemy airfields in the Buka-Bonis Plantation area of northern Bougainville, and American cruisers and destroyers shelled enemy coastal positions. Trucks in foreground are 4-ton 6x6's top. Troops continued to land at the base established on Cape Torokina for two months after the invasion.
Message center in operation, 9 January ; note the lamp shade improvised from a tin can bottom. By this time Allied air and naval power had isolated the enemy; his line of communication to Rabaul had been severed.
Japan's Last Bid for Victory: The Invasion of India, 1944
Emergency operation being performed in a dugout. This underground surgery room was dug about four feet below the surface and the sides were built up with sand bags and roofed with heavy logs. The entire structure was covered with a pyramidal tent, shielding the occupants from the sun bottom. The mortar is a mm. The Japanese lours had been ordered to drive the Allied forces from Bougainville becanse of the precarious situation at Rabaul. The bamboo poles on the right in the river form a fish trap. At the end of , further offensive action on Bougainville had not been planned because of expected new strategic plans of operations against the enemy; however, renewed enemy activity evidenced in February necessitated further action.
This vehicle was used to bring men and supplies to the fighting lines and had seating capacity for thirteen men. The roller in front assisted in climbing out of ditches top. Infantrymen, walking through a lane between barbed wire, carry mm. Between 8 and 25 March the enemy launched several major attacks against the Allied forces on Bougainville. The enemy fought with his customary tenacity and his resistance in defended positions won the grudging admiration of the U.
By 24 April , ground forces had crushed the last important Japanese counter-offensive against the Bougainville perimeter. Casualties were heavier than in any operation since the Guadalcanal Campaign in the Solomon chain. An Australian sentry is on guard near a Flying Fortress in right foreground as soldiers await planes to go to New Guinea top ; troops boarding a C transport plane for New Guinea bottom.
During the last days of September the Allies launched a counterattack in Papua, New Guinea, thus starting the Papua Campaign- American troops for this action were sent to Port Moresby from Australia, partly by plane and partly by boat. The enemy fell back under the weight of the 28 September attack. Australians laboriously made their way over steep mountain trails ol the Owen Stanley Range while most of the American troops, a total of about 4,, were down overland to Jaure in C's. This was the first large-scale airborne troop movement of the war.
From the 10tht troops advanced as rapidly as possible along the muddy trails and waded, often breast high, through streams to approach Buna. A surprise attack on Buna was not possible as Australian patrols had learned that "bush wireless" carried the news of the American airborne movement to the Japanese,. The rugged terrain of Papua includes the high Owen Stanley Range, jungles, and impassable, malaria-infected swampy areas as well as coconut plantations and open helds ot coarse, shoulder-high kunai grass encountered near Buna.
Only one rough and steep trail existed over the range from the Port Moresby area to the front, taking from 18 to 28 days to traverse on foot; however, American troops and supplies flown over the range made the trip in about 45 minutes. The Papua Campaign and the almost simultaneous action on Guadalcanal were the first victorious operations of US ground forces against the Japanese. Only a few trails led from Allied positions to the enemy's fortified areas at Buna and Sanananda. Food was so short during November and the early part of December that troops sometimes received only a small portion of a C ration each day.
The rain, alternating with stifling jungle heat, and the insects seemed more determined than the enemy; disease inflicted more casualties than the Japanese. Because of transportation difficulties which lasted until the end of November, only about one third of the mortars were brought with the troops- Allied attacks were made on both Sanananda and Buna with no material gains.
These full-track, high-speed cargo carriers, designed to transport personnel, ammunition, and accessories, were produced for the British only. The presence of several Bren-gun carriers proved a surprise to the enemy. However, enemy soldiers picked off the exposed crews and tossed grenades over the sides of the carriers. In a short time they were all immobilized and infantry following behind them met with intense fire from the enemy's defenses.
During the latter part of December, tanks arrived by boat. Only one mm. After many set-backs, Buna Village was captured on 14 December. Although Allied attacks at various points were often unsuccessful, the Japanese, suffering from lack of supplies and reinforcements, finally capitulated on 2 January at Buna Mission. GUN M3A1 into enemy positions. The mm. Japanese tactics during the Buna campaign were strictly defensive; for the most part the enemy dug himself in and waited for Allied troops to cross his final protective line.
In general, the islanders were very friendly to the Allies, their work throughout campaign, in moving supples over the treacherous trails and in rescuing Allied survivors of downed aircraft, was excellent. Enemy fortifications covered all the approaches to his bases except by sea, and were not easily discerned because of fast growing tropical vegetation which gave them a natural camouflage.
Constant work was maintained to make routes passable for jeeps. Construction of airstrips near Dobodura and Popondetta, underway by 18 November, was assigned the highest priority because of the lack of a harbor in the area. Some supplies were flown to the airstrips and some arrived by sea through reef-studded coastal waters near Ora Bay. The last vital transport link was formed by a few jeeps and native carriers who delivered the supplies to dumps just beyond the range of enemy small arms fire.
Attacks from all sides by the American and Australian units in their drive toward Sanananda met with stiff enemy resistance after Buna Mission had been captured. This long, hard counteroffensive freed Australia from the imminent threat of invasion and gave the Allies a toe hold in the New Guinea area of enemy defenses protecting Rabaul, one of the main Japanese positions in the Pacific. Natives often acted as litter bearers for casualties. Of the 13, American troops taking part in the Papua Campaign, were killed, 2, wounded, and about 8, evacuated sick.
Troops fighting in this campaign learned the art of jungle warfare which proved of immense value in training divisions for subsequent operations. The enemy suffered heavy casualties in the Papua Campaign. Disease and starvation claimed many: only a few were evacuated and about were captured by Allied troops. On 29 January American transport planes began to ferry troops from Port Moresby to Wau, about 30 miles inland from the northeast coast of New Guinea. As the troops unloaded, they rushed to defenses around the edge of the field since the Japanese were then within easy rifle range of the airstrip.
The next day a determined enemy attack was repulsed. On 3 February the Japanese began to withdraw. After the enemy had withdrawn from the area of VVau, months of constant fighting followed in the jungle-clad ridges between Wan and Salamaua, during which time the enemy suffered heavy casualties. This facilitated the movement of troops and supplies by water to that area and gained valuable new airfields for the Allies. Smoke from bomb bursts can be seen on Salamaua.
While the ground forces were battling with the enemy, aircraft were striking at his bases at Salamaua, Lae, Finschhafen, Madang. Aircraft operating from Port Moresby and from newly won fields in the Buna-Gona area intensified their attacks on the enemy's bases. A sustained five-day air offensive against Wewak, which began on 17 August, destroyed about planes on the ground and in the air at a cost of only 10 U.
White parachutes were used by the troops, colored ones for supplies and ammunition. The men were dropped to seize the airdrome at Nadzab, located some 20 miles northwest ot Lae, on the morning of 5 September An advance on Salamaua was initiated by Australian troops with assistance from American units that had landed at Nassau Bay on 30 June. This nve was an attempt to divert enemy strength from Lae, the real objective of the Allies. As a result of this move the Japanese did divert their reinforcements arriving at Lae to Salamaua to strengthen their defenses there, as the Allies moved closer to the town.
Wrecked buildings and huge bomb craters resulted from earlier aerial attacks on the area. On this date Sala-maua was taken, the final attack having been delayed until the Lae operation was well underway. During the period from 30 June to 16 September, a total of about 10, Japanese had been overcome in the Lae-Salamaua area- About 4, and 2, were reported killed in the vicinity of Salamaua and Lae, respectively.
The remainder made their way north as best they could. This photograph was taken on 1 September After Finschhafen was captured by the Allies, US troops halted to consolidate their gaines. Offensive operations in New guinea during the remainder of consisted of a slow advance toward Madang to maintain pressure on enemy. Parachute bombs were used to prevent self-destruction of the attacking low-flying bombers by the blasts of their own bombs.
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It was claimed that more than enemy aircraft were destroyed or damaged on this raid, in addition to other materiel, ships, and installations. Infantryman relaxes on a cork life raft top while two men check and reassemble a flexible, water-cooled. While Army and Navy bombers pounded Rabaul, landings were made on Arawe peninsula on the southern coast of New Britain, 15 December Bomb splashes can be seen in water, resulting from the enemy's attempt to hit the LST in foreground. This was the only effective resistance offered by the Japanese at Cape Gloucester. The invasion of New Britain was the climax of the drive up the Solomon-New Guinea ladder; at the eastern end of this island was Rabaul, chief enemy base in the Southwest Pacific.
Eyemo movie camera, while the beachhead was being made secure three days after the landings on Arawe top. Infantryman watching aircraft from his camouflaged foxhole bottom. Five days after the landings the Americans had cleared the enemy from Arawe peninsula. Armored amphibian tractors proved to be valuable assault vehicles. They could be floated beyond the range of shore batteries, deployed in normal landing boat formations, and driven over the fringing reefs and up the beaches.
One of the immediate missions of the forces landing on Arawe was to establish a PT boat base. Note that they carry their rifles high. On 26 December marines landed on the western end of New Britain at points east and west of Cape Gloucester. Their immediate objective, the airdrome on the cape, was a desirable link in the chain of bases necessary to permit the air forces to pave the way for further advances.
Craft in the background is an LVT; in the foreground a jeep is being pushed through the surf. Many of the men carry litters for the expected casualties. Troops succeeded in driving the Japanese out of the cape in four days. The lodgments on New Britain severed one of the main enemy supply lines between Rabaul and eastern New Guinea, and as the year drew to a close, Rabaul was rapidly being isolated.
The attack scheduled for 7 May was delayed until the 11th because of unfavorable weather conditions. The attack on Attu was planned in the hope that Kiska would be made untenable, compelling the enemy to evacuate his forces there. In the foreground can be seen a crashed Japanese Zero airplane. To the right, men and equipment are unloading from landing craft. It was soon found that the steep jagged crags, kmfelike ridges, and boggy tundra greatly impeded the troops and made impracticable any extensive use of mechanized equipment. A heavy fog on D Day caused several postponements of H Hour.
The first troops finally moved ashore at on 11 May. The cloud of smoke in the background is from an enemy shell; the men in the area can be seen running to take cover top. Men pause in the battle of the tundra to identify approaching aircraft bottom. Landings were made by forces at both Massacre Bay and Holtz Bay. A cradle was lowered into the landing craft, the patient and stretcher were placed in it, hoisted aboard ship. Landing craft in background as an LCVP. The more serious casualties were evacuated from Attu in the early stages og the battle.
Two of the tents were used for surgery, the other two for wards. Foxholes were dug in the side of the hill for protection at night top - Casualties suffering from exposure were housed in improvised shelters because of overcrowded wards bottom. There were as many casualties resulting from exposure as from Japanese bullets. Ponton of the wrecked Japanese airplane found at Holtz Bay; the wooden wheel was probably to be used by the enemy to obtain a water supply from a near-by creek bottom. The enemy put up a bitter fight which was to last for eighteen days.
After returning from the front lines on 20 Nfay, the men busied themselves by doing some much needed laundry and cleaning their weapons. The men needed heavy winter clothing to help protect them from the bitter cold and damp weather. American mm. In order to get the crane off, it was necessary to make a sand ramp leading from the shore to the deck of the barge. Tractor at right is a 7-ton, high-speed tractor M2 top -An oil and gas dump; at the left can be seen a motor pool bottom. The battle for Attu ended on 30 May but mopping-up operations continued for several days.
The P, on taxiway ready to take off, was used before twin-engined fighter planes were obtained. Often two pound bombs were put on each of these planes, which were used a dive bombers. Bombers used advanced airfields, set up in August on Adak and Amchitka Islands, to attack Attu and Kiska, two islands of the Aleutian chain which the enemy had occupied in June in an effort to limit American air and sea operations in the North Pacific.
During the first half of , 1, tons of bombs were dropped on enemy positions in the Aleutians. Men can be seen moving along the hillside like ants. At this time it was not known when the enemy would strike since prior to landing no ground reconnaissance had been attempted for fear of informing the enemy of the invasion. Captured Japanese machine cannon mm. When troops landed on Kiska on 15 and 16 August, prepared for a battle more difficult than that at Attu, the island had been evacuated by the enemy.
Occupation troops on Kiska, themselves with whatever comfort they devise. With the occupation of Kiska, US troops had reclaimed all of the Aleutians. The islands then became air bases for bombing the northern approaches to Tokyo. Having just landed on one of the beaches, 20 November, the men crouch low awaiting instructions to advance inland; light tank is in the background bottom. The Japanese, in September , had occupied the Gilbert Islands.
This group of islands included Makin Atoll and Tarawa Atoll. Only small enemy forces were placed on other islands in the Gilberts. Patrols came ashore in LVT's before trie mam body of infantry and tanks. As the amphibians came over the coral reefs, no barbed wire, mines, or other military obstacles impeded them. Some of the men scrambled over the sides of the amphibians to seek cover from enemy riflemen. The tactics for knocking out the fortified emplacements on the island were as follows: The BARman with his assistant would cover the main entrance of an emplacement encountered, and two other men with grenades would make ready on both flanks.
They would throw grenades into the pit and then without stopping, run to the other side and blast the entrance with more grenades. Once the grenades exploded, the BARman and assistant would follow up. Rifleman armed with a bazooka crouches behind a log near the front lines bottom.
The rocket launcher 2. Flanking machine gun and rifle fire from the enemy in the battered Japanese sea plane upper right harassed our troops on the 21st. This fire was silenced by the mm. Co-ordination between the infantry and tanks was good on the second day. Tank in foreground had bogged down in a water-filled bomb crater top. The remains of a Japanese light tank which did not get into battle bottom. During the morning of the first day American tanks could not make much headway against the combined obstacles of debris, shell holes, and marsh, but by afternoon they were able to render assistance to the infantry.
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The enemy had only two tanks on the island but they were not used since when they were found wooden plugs were still in the barrels of their guns. One of the antitank gun pits that ringed the outer defenses of one of the tank traps established by the enemy bottom. Air observation prior to the operation had revealed most of the defensive construction and led to correct inference of much that lay concealed such as these antitank emplacements. This weapon was fully automatic, air-cooled, and could be employed against both aircraft and tanks top. War trophies consisting of chickens and ducks captured on the island, were cherished in anticipation of Thanksgiving Day when they could be used to supplement the K ration bottom.
On 22 November it was announced that organized resistance had ended and on the next day forces on Makin were occupied with mopping-up activities. At this time enemy air activity was expected to increase. The Japanese had concentrated their strength on Betio Island.
Floated out to the reef, the wounded were then transferred to landing craft and removed further out to transports. The larger enemy force on Betio Island made the operation there very difficult for Allied troops and much more costly than the simultaneous operation on Butaritari Island in the Makin Atoll.
By late afternoon of D Day supplies for the forces were getting ashore and reinforcements were on their way. Onre ashore, the marines were pinned down by withering enemy fire lliat came from carefully prepared eniplatcments in almost every direction of advance. Powerful hand-to-hand infantry assault tactics were necessary to d. This gun was considered one of the most reliable weapons of the war. The island was declared secure on 23 November; the remaining enemy forces were wiped out by the 28th. Betio, with the only airfield in Tarawa Atoll, together with captured Butaritari in Makin Atoll and other lesser islands, gave the Allies control of the entire Gilbert Islands archipelago.
From these new bases an attack against the Marshall Islands was launched in The battle of production and supply, designed to build a foundation to support unprecedented Allied air and naval power, was won during and , while Japanese air and naval power greatly diminished. Hawaii, the most important naval base in the Pacific, had become a training center and staging area for U.
In , the strategic offensive against Japan began. Crowl, The Seizure of the Gilberts and Marshalls. Smith, The Approach to the Philippines; and M. All volumes are in preparation for the series U. Following the invasion of the Gilberts in late , U. According to plans for the assault on the western Marshalls, a Marine division was to seize the northern half of the Kwajalein Atoll, principally the islands of Roi and Naraur; Army ground forces units were to capture the southern half of the atoll, including the island of Kwajalein, and to occupy Majuro Island, one of the finest naval anchorages west of Pearl Harbor.
Supporting naval and air bombardment and artillery fire the artillery had been ferried ashore on the small near-by islands were brought to bear on the selected landing beaches of Kwajalein and Roi Islands of Kwajalein Atoll. Unopposed landings were made on both islands on 1 February , with slight resistance developing after advance was made inland. Six days after the main landings, all the islands of the Kwajalein Atoll were in U.
On 17 February landings were made on the islands of Eniwetok Atoll; resistance was wiped out five days later. A two-day strike against Truk, 16 and 17 February, was executed by a large carrier task force to screen the assault of the Eniwetok Atoll and to test strength of the Japanese base there. Although the strong enemy island bases in the eastern Marshalls were bypassed, the air forces maintained continual attacks on them throughout the year. Conquest of the western Marshalls provided air bases and a new forward fleet base in the Pacific.
The Mariana Islands, the next objective in ihe Central Pacific, differ from the coral atolls of the Marshalls and Gilberts. The individual islands are much larger and the distinguishing terrain features are precipitous coast lines, high hills, and deep ravines. Plans were made, ships and supplies collected, and the troops given special training for the invasion; meanwhile Japanese air and ground reinforcements poured into the Central Pacific.
An intense air offensive against enemy installations in the Marianas began on 11 June and a naval bombardment of Saipan began on the 13th, two days before the landings on the 15th. Opposition was heavy at first, but by the 25th U. Again advances were slow and difficult with heavy troop losses. On 9 July the mission was completed, except for mopping-up operations which continued for nearly two months. On the morning of 24 July an attack was made on Tinian, supported by artillery on Saipan. Enemy resistance, slight for first two days, increased when high ground was reached in the central part of the island.
The entire island was overrun by 1 August. Meanwhile, Guam had been invaded on 21 July by U. This invasion was preceded by a thirteen-day aerial and naval softening-up process. The two beachheads were joined after three days of fighting. The troops, greatly hampered by heavy undergrowth, concentrated on the high ground in the northern part of the island and, except for resistance from small groups of scattered Japanese, were in command of the island by 10 August. A force of nearly ships from the Guadalcanal area sailed for the Palau Islands, the next hop in the Central Pacific.
These were the two southernmost islands of the Palau group. Opposition on Angaur was relatively light.
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Much stiffer resistance was met on Peleliu, which contained the site of the major Japanese airfield on the islands. The troops succeeded, by 12 October, in pushing the enemy into a small area in the central hills of Peleliu, but many more weeks were spent destroying the remaining opposition. During the fighting in the southern Palaus, Ulithi Atoll in the western Carolines was taken to secure a naval anchorage in the western Pacific. Add to Wishlist. USD Sign in to Purchase Instantly. Usually ships within 1 week. Average Review. Write a Review. Related Searches. View Product.
Readers have come to expect a level of detail and critical rigor from the established Readers have come to expect a level of detail and critical rigor from the established military historian and author Bryan Perrett. They will not be disappointed at all here by this new publication. Focussing predominantly on the British armored car Escape from India. In it, Kendra recounts to Sita her attempt to flee from India to England with In it, Kendra recounts to Sita her attempt to flee from India to England with the aid of friends and the harrowing encounters she faces during that last five month journey to freedom.
He traveled widely, learnt the local dialects and built the Chilas Polo ground. Kohima The battle that saved India. Limbang Rebellion: Seven Days in December Between 8 and 12 December of , world attention focused on a surprise rebel uprising Between 8 and 12 December of , world attention focused on a surprise rebel uprising that sprang up in northern Borneo, where hostages were taken and threatened with execution.
The small river town of Limbang, administrative center of the Fifth Sebastien Le Prestre, Marshal Vauban, was one of the greatest military engineers of all time.