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MH-18: Victory in the Pacific. MH-18: Pacific Victory - Strategic Overview Naval & Amphibious War – Operational Level. US Grand Strategy : still Germany “first” => but… political reality could not be ignored: Japan bombed US first at Pearl Harbor

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MH-18: Victory in the Pacific

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mh 18 pacific victory strategic overview naval amphibious war operational level
MH-18: Pacific Victory - Strategic OverviewNaval & Amphibious War – Operational Level
  • US Grand Strategy: still Germany “first” => but…
    • political reality could not be ignored:
      • Japan bombed US first at Pearl Harbor
      • American Public demanded revenge on Japan
  • Result => Grand Strategic objectives & priorities adjusted:
    • Pacific theater gets higher political & military priority
  • Also: setting strategic priorities forced leadership:
    • Allocate scarce resources among competing CINCs
      • (i.e. forces, logistics and supplies)
      • Not => best strategic objective or COAto pursue (CINC personalities)
  • Result: logistics and politicalconsiderations drive=>
    • Allied Strategy => producing ad hoc strategic approach =>
    • “Dueling” operational strategies in Central & SW Pacific
      • US called them “complementing strategies;” Brits called them competing
strategic opportunity vs limited resources
Strategic Opportunity vs. Limited Resources
  • Following Battle of Midway (June 1942)=>
    • CINCPAC (Nimitz) still left with only limited resources
    • A Major limitation for prosecuting war in Pacific theater
    • Only able to assign 1 UMSC division to secure Guadalcanal
    • PACFLT ships barely able to protect Australian LOCs
  • Later US mobilization expanded MPN & logistics=>
    • Made sufficient forces available to Pacific (by latter half of war)
    • Enabled US to pursue & adequately support:
      • 2 separate pronged strategies led by MacArthur (SW) & Nimitz (Central)
  • As Pacific War was fought =>
    • Number of ships sunk surpassed all previous conflicts
    • Combined Air/Sea/Landops accelerated toward the War’s end
  • But what would finally put an end to the war with Japan?
south pacific august 42 december 43 guadalcanal
South Pacific (August’42-December’43)Guadalcanal
  • Navy & USMC conducted operations in South Pacific =>
    • Specifically in the Solomon Islands=> at Guadalcanal
  • USMC continued to defend against escalating assaults
    • Japanese conducted wave upon wave of frontal assaults
    • Suffered horrendous casualties in process
    • 15K killed or missing – 9K from disease - 1000 captured
  • Meanwhile=> Naval battles also fought throughout
    • Conducted in & around Solomon Islands (Salvo Island- USN defeated)
operation cartwheel
Operation Cartwheel
  • Series of battles then conducted in parallel in SW Pacific
  • Background:
    • CasablancaConferenceof Jan 1943
    • Key issue: unity of command in Pacific Theater:
    • Army (MacArthur)versus
    • Navy (Nimitz)
  • Question: who’s in charge & whose strategy will prevail:
    • (i.e. Given priority for resources & manpower)
  • Macarthur’s proposed strategy?
    • Capture?______________in 1943
    • CJCS response?
    • Too ?__________ & ?__________
fallback strategy
Fallback Strategy
  • CJCS Compromise:
    • 2 pronged drive converging on Rabaul
    • Tactical objective: capture orisolateRabaul
  • Concept of Operations(Map):
    • “Bull” Halsey to advance up Solomonsto Bougainville
    • MacArthur advance along New Guineaeast coast
      • Attack New Britain
      • Then isolate Rabaul
  • Significance?
    • PACFLTemployed to meet political objectives (PHrevenge)
    • Cartwheelalsowould become model for entire Pacific campaign
air power s role in sw pacific
Air Power’s Rolein SW Pacific
  • Key role in Cartwheel & future Leap-frog strategy
    • Employ CAS for invasion=> troops establish runways=>
    • Used as FOB & Air Field to attack next island target
    • Then US starts the cycle over again for next “Islandleap”
  • MacArthur’s top air commander & strategist
    • MG George C. Kenney
    • Developed new & innovative tactics
    • What kind of innovative tactics?
  • Employed land based air to strike Navy & defenses
    • Modified B-25s w/8 50 cal MGs in nose
    • B-25s fly low level sorties against ships
      • Skip 100# bombs into enemy shipping
      • Big improvement over past USAAF ops against Japanese ships
japanese response april 1943
Japanese Response – April 1943
  • Japanese successfully deploy 8th , 17th, & 18th Armies to SW area of operations from China & Japan
    • Then re-deploy 51st division from Rabaul to New Guinea
    • Magic forewarns allies of Japanese intent:
  • Battle of Bismarck Sea
    • MG Kenny’s modified B-25s make low level & B-17smake high levelattacks
    • Land based Air destroys Japanese troop transports for decisive Allied victory
      • Impact: loss of this huge armada, loaded with supplies and troops, ended Japanese hopes of retaining control of New Guinea
      • Also gains US Navy’s reluctant recognition of new Air Force (AF) tactic
  • Magicalso alerts allies of AdmiralYamamoto’s planned air trip:
    • Action taken by allies?
amphibious campaign island hopping
Amphibious Campaign- Island hopping
  • Macarthur & Halsey continue duel advance:
    • Conduct amphibious landings or isolate enemy at:
      • New Georgia, Bougainville, New Britain, etc.
  • Tactical & Operational objectives & strategy:
    • Capture Japanese built air fields (or build them on captured Island)
    • Occupy & stage for further advance up island chain
    • Skip & isolate heavily defended island defenses:
    • Close off enemy’s LOC instead (Illustrated byKolombangara)
  • Capture more air strips & “island hop” all the wayto Japan
sw pacific island hopping results significance
SW Pacific “Island Hopping:” Results & Significance:
  • Each seized island provided air/logistic base for next hop
  • Isolated Japanese units died on vine =>
    • Therefore it presented no more operational threat
  • Useful precedence established:
    • Successful operational strategy was used throughout rest of war for entire Pacific Theater
  • Allied buildup in Pacific & air/sea control enhanced
    • Success encouraged more support & higher priority
central pacific campaign nov 43 feb 44 strategic aims for pacific
Central Pacific Campaign (Nov’43-Feb’44)Strategic Aims for Pacific
  • Trident Conference (Washington DC- May’43)
    • FDR, Churchill, & CJCS establish strategic aims for Pacific Theater
  • Strategic aims included:
    • 1. Cut off Japanese raw materials
    • 2. Conduct strategic bombing on Japan
    • 3. InvadeJapan home islands & destroy military power
  • Operational Strategy:
    • Build on success in Burma, So. Pacific, China=>
    • Then launch strike against Japan itself
concept of operations two opposing concepts
Concept of Operations:Two Opposing Concepts
  • 1. Drive across central Pacific
    • (who’s proposal?):
    • Use Coral Atolls for launch sites (logistics, FOB staging, etc)
  • 2. Continue drive in So Pacific via New Guinea & PI (who?)
    • (“I shall return”)
    • But he needs Naval support in order to accomplish this concept
    • South Pacific Strategy- Halsey’s role (“MacArthur’s Admiral”)
  • CJCS compromise?
    • Balance two strategies –
      • Complimentary?
    • ADM King’s proposal modified– how?
      • Strategies converged where? _______________
      • To provide Sealift for MacArthur’s “return”

ADM King

navy s key role sea power pacflt order of battle
Navy’s Key Role- Sea PowerPACFLT Order of Battle
  • US shipbuildingon step by Summer’43:
  • Major positive impact on US Order of Battle
    • Essex class Fleet Carrier (CV): 27K tons & 100 A/C
    • Independence class light Carrier: 11K tons & 50 A/C
    • CV aircraft: F6F Hellcat
  • Commander 5th Fleet (Spruance) forces comprised:
    • 6 Flt CVs, 5 lite CVs, 12 BBs, 9 heavy & 5 lite CRs +
    • 56 DDs & required support: Oil, Ammo, Supply ships
    • Submarines had a special role*
submarine campaign pacific
Submarine Campaign- Pacific

Most effective offense throughout Pacific:

Submarine (SS) attack on Japanese commerce

Slow start at beginning due to number of reasons

Lack of leadership & tactical skill (peacetime COs)

Faulty torpedoes & denial of problem at BUWEPS

Resulting in self destruction of USS Tang

Once solved =>

Japanese Navy & merchants very vulnerable:

Japanese conducted no serious prep against SS threat

Prior to & during early part of War

No adequate staff or command level attention devoted

No convoy system developed or anti-SS resources

When problem finally recognized => too late


sustained combat operations at sea
“Sustained Combat Operations at Sea”
  • PACFLT dominated seas in & around Japan by Fall’43
    • USN Capacity & capability unsurpassed
    • Logistics, re-supply, & repair at sea unmatched
    • 5th & 3rd Fleet HQ staffs simply rotated
    • The Fleet itself was always at sea
      • HQ ashore planned for upcoming operations
    • Japan simply could not compete at this level
  • Fleetable to conduct opposed amphibious landings
    • Protect landing forces with air & sea power
  • Fleet also able to conduct major surface battles (CV air)
    • All the while remaining at sea indefinitely
    • Many sailors stayed at sea almost entire war
central pacific strategy
Central Pacific Strategy
  • The drive through the Central Pacific given higher priority
    • Especially by the Navy leadership & many members of CJCS
    • SW Pacific drive seen by many as based more on “political” considerations than strategic or operational priorities
      • (FDR wanted to keep MacArthur as far away from Washington as possible)
tarawa nov 43 objectives
Tarawa (Nov’43)- Objectives
  • Tactical & Operational Objectives:
    • Gilbert Islands were 1st objective of Central Pacific Drivestrategy
    • Target: Betio in Tarawa atoll
  • Battlefield preparation:
    • Inadequate NGF support
    • Poor recon (Photo from air)
    • Lack of critical Hydrographic Reconnaissance data
    • Reef ½ mile out from landing beach would block landing craft
    • Marines must wade ashore
tarawa execution
Tarawa: Execution
  • Lack of sufficient gunfire support & preparation = high casualties
    • Lack of proper coordination between landing force & sea commanders
    • USMC landing force come ashore to kill zone wading in head+ high water
    • Planners grossly underestimated enemy strength & defense
      • 5000 Japanese troops dug in with heavy weapons- pour it on Marines
  • Serious lack of adequate information about beach landing site:
    • Coral reefs ground landing craft far off shore
    • 2nd USMC forced to wade ashore – many drown w/heavy equipment & ammo
      • 5000 finally make it ashore through heavy fire, but 1500 are dead or wounded
tarawa results
Tarawa: Results
  • Bitter lessons learned
    • Casualties: USMC: 3381 (990 KIAs) out of 18,600
    • 4Medal of Honors (MOH) awarded
      • (3 post humorously)
    • Japanese: 17 survivors out 5000 man garrison
  • PACFLT concluded better & more up close hydrographic recons required prior to future amphibious landings
    • Underwater Demolition Teams(UDT) reason for being:
      • Reconnaissance & demolition
central pacific drive continued
Central Pacific Drive Continued
  • USN next month op was success:
    • Isolation of Truk(750 due west)
    • Precludes Truk’s use by Japanese Air Craft
    • Unable to stop US invasion of Eniwetok- Feb 44:
    • Luck: early US attack prevented Eniwetok adequate defense
    • Result: USMC lives saved due to earlier Feb assault
  • Eniwetok’s capture => Operational impact:
    • US now 1000 miles west of Tarawa:
  • Closer to next operational objective: Mariana atolls
    • Also 1000 miles closer to US strategic Objective: (what?)
    • ?________- US to use Marianas as air base to bomb ?_________________
sw pacific operations linked to central pacific
SW Pacific Operations Linked to Central Pacific
  • Two separate Pacific Drives continued
    • Mac isolated Rabaul & then seized Hollandia
  • Wakde & Biaksoon taken after Hollandia
    • Wakde & Biak’sOperational significance?
    • Within range of PI with American Aircraft
    • Japanesealso realize the significance of threat
  • Impact of friction & good timing:
    • Macarthur’sluck holds at Biak
    • Spruance (5Flt) attacks Marianas
  • Japanese immediately cancelled attack on BiakIsland (never to return)
    • Prepare to deploy Task Force to Central Pacific
  • Spruance’s attack in Central Pacific sets in motion new Japanese Operation: “A-GO”
  • Tactical Objective:
    • Decisive Battle in Central Pacific to destroy PACFLT’s 5th Fleet
central pacific the marianas saipan tinian guam
Central Pacific => The MarianasSaipan, Tinian & Guam
  • Saipan - closest major Island in the Marianas:
    • USMC 2nd & 4th divisions tasked to take Saipan
    • Army 27th ID in support
    • Also tasked to take Tinian following Saipan
  • Saipanwas defended by 32K Japanese
    • (but its defense preparations were incomplete & soon fell)
    • Op. & Strategic significance?
    • Saipan is now within B-29 range
  • US secured Tinian & Guam by July & early Aug after hard fighting
battle of pi sea
Battle of PI Sea
  • Spruance’s advance on Marianas & attack on Saipan has major impact on Japanese strategy
    • Forces Japan to dump Biak& establish 1st Mobile Flt:
    • 1st Mobile Flt comprises:
    • 9 CVs w/400 AC, 5 BB, 13 CR, 28 DDs
      • All units re-deployed to Central Pacific
  • Tactical & Operational Objective:
    • DestroyAmerican 5th Fleet
  • Spruance kept Fleet between Saipan amphibious ops & Japan’s Fleet
    • Japan forced to attack=> 4 waves of 373 AC strike (only 100 penetrate CAP)
    • TF58A/Csink one CV & damage 3 others (US SS also sink 2 CVs)
  • Result: Although bulk of Japanese Fleet escapes:
    • Battle has big Operational impact on Japan-what?
    • Major loss of ?_________ __________ ________ _______________
  • USN Fleet structure/coordination & power projection validated
philippine invasion
Philippine Invasion
  • King & MacArthur disagree over final operational strategy of Pacific war
    • King wants to continue island hop to Mindanao
      • (in Southern Philippines)
    • Then to make big jump to Formosa & China Coast (Map)
    • This is here “scouts & raiders” have reconned potential beach landing sites in China
      • FutureFOBs for Japan’s invasion
  • MacArthur continues to press for liberation of PI people
leyte gulf oct 44 july 45
Leyte Gulf -Oct 44- July 45
  • Convergence to 2 prong drives=> both toward ?___________________
    • Key stepping stone to Luzon (main PI island)
  • Key events: Halsey conducts engagements off to east of PI
    • Destroyed much of Japanese land and CV basedaircraft
      • Forced Japanese to return to Japan for repairs & replace pilots
    • Halsey deduced that Japan lacked strong force in PI (wrong)
  • Japanese prepared for decisive battle with complex plan:
    • 4 separate TF to attack US force in waters off PI
    • CVs from Japan to draw US CVs away from Luzon
    • Surface Flt (BBs) to move through San Bernadino Strait:
      • Tactical objective: attack US landing forces landing at Luzon
    • Remaining Japanese TFto move thru Surigao Straits
leyte gulf execution
Leyte Gulf:Execution
  • Oct 20: MacArthur attacks NE coast of Leytewith LTG Krueger’s6th Army
    • Encounters moderate resistance but 6th Army fights inland
  • Japanese respond but are spotted by US submarine
    • US Navy attacks & sinks 2 heavy Japanese cruisers:
    • This rattles Adm Kurita, Commander of main San Bernadino Task Force
  • Japanese A/C from Leyte attack Halsey (Princeton is badlyt hit)
    • But Halsey’s A/C find Kurita’s TF & attacks:
    • Sink super BB Musashi
    • Kuritabecomes even more rattled & retreats from PI
halsey s blunder
Halsey’s Blunder
  • Halsey sails entire Fleet North in search of more targets
    • Leaves nothing behind to defend Amphibious ships!
  • Meanwhile Imperial HQ ordered Kuritato return to fight:
    • Kurita now unopposed for transit of San Bernie Strait
    • Only few DDs & escort CVs between him & what?
      • ?_______ ________ _______!
    • But still able to harass enemy & prompt Kurita’s withdrawal
    • Very close to disaster for Americans (& Halsey’s reputation)
    • By Christmas last Leyte port taken* by 6th Army- mop up ops follow
ominous new tactic revealed
Ominous New Tactic Revealed
  • Ominous new tactic makes its debut at Leyte Gulf:
    • A serious new threat used against US in future battles
    • What is the new tactic used by Japan near end of war as a last resort?
    • ?_____________ ____________
  • Japan strips all available forces to reinforce Leyte
    • Taken from Luzon & Okinawa
    • Major future impact later
luzon jan 45
Luzon -Jan 45
  • MacArthur finally fulfills his promise to return
    • Navy pays dearly price in process => why?
      • ?_________________ attacks on USN
  • Meanwhile GeneralYamashita abandons cities for mountain defense
  • 6 Jan: 6th army lands on Lingayen Gulf:
    • 4 infantry divisions => total of 175K men
    • 6th Armymarches 40 mile in 2 weeks thru light resistance
  • 29 Jan US makes 2 more landings:
    • NW & SW of Manila
  • Though Yamashitaordered cities abandon =>
    • Japanese Marines fight on to keep Manila
      • (Not in his Chain of Command)
    • Manila virtually destroyed as result - 100K civilians die & Yamashita is blamed for it
      • And subsequently tried and executed for it
final campaigns iwo jima feb jun 45
Final Campaigns- Iwo Jima (Feb-Jun’45)
  • Background:
    • Operational significance of Iwo: Japan’s early warning
    • Also Japanese fighters based on Iwo harass B-29s
    • B-29s conducting bombing raids from Marianas
      • Suffer heavy losses without much to show for it
    • Also emergency landing field badly needed upon return flights
  • Order of Battle:
    • Japan: LTG Tadamichi commands 21K with 1000 guns
      • Strong defensive positions: dug in deep in caves and tunnels
    • US: VADM Turner commands Joint Expedition force
      • LTG Holland Smith commands Troops: USMC V corps
      • Comprised of: 3rd, 4th, & 5th Marine divisions
      • Armored amphibian tractors & Navy NFS
iwo jima plans objectives
Iwo Jima-Plans & Objectives
  • Strategic, Operational, tactical Objectives:
    • Japan: defend Iwo & prevent its capture
    • US: capture Iwo & use for B-29 emergency landings
  • Concept of Operations:
    • Japan: defend fm complex system of caves & tunnels
    • US: attack abreast on SW beach=> main effort to south
  • Iwo Battlefield preparation:
    • Japan: withdraw to mountain areas & await attack
    • US: Recon beach landing areas & NGF prep
iwo jima execution
Iwo Jima-Execution
  • 0935 19 Feb: 1st wave of armored tractors insert
    • 5th Div on left & 4th Div on the right (Map)
  • On left 28th infantry regiment turns South to Suribachi
    • Gains crest after 4 days of heavy fighting (plants American flag)
  • Main effort to North – slow advance of 5th & 4th Divs
    • Japanese conduct fierce resistance all along (red) defense lines from tunnel/ & cave network
    • Island finally secured after heavy fighting on 26 March 1945
iwo jima results
Iwo Jima- Results
  • USMC:
    • 5931 KIA/17372 WIA out of 71245 put ashore
    • (27 MOHs awarded – half post-humorously)
  • Japan: almost all defenders killed
    • 216 POW survivors taken (Korean civilian contractors)
  • US eliminatedfighter threat to B-29 raids on Japan
  • Emergency landing field secured
    • 2251 heavy bombers (B-29s) & crews saved from ditching
    • 24761 total made emergency landings on Iwo Jims airfields
okinawa april jun 1945
Okinawa (April – Jun 1945)
  • Background:
    • Final land battle of the Pacific war
    • Capture would provide a staging base for air strikes and invasion
  • Order of Battle:
    • Japan: LTG Ushijima commands 32nd Army (77K)
      • Plus 23K Navy and Oki conscripts = total: 100K
    • US: ADM Nimitz overall Theater commander- ADM Spruance, CMDR 5th Fleet w/1200 ships
      • LTC Buckner: 10th Army (III & XXIV corps) 182K
okinawa plans objectives
Okinawa: Plans & Objectives
  • Strategic, Operational, tactical Objectives:
    • Japan: prevent capture of Oki as long as possible:
      • Inflict maximum casualties on assaulters
    • US: Capture Oki & use it as base to stage invasion of Japan
  • Concept of Operations:
    • Japan: defense in depth with main strength to South:
      • 3 major defense lines following E-W ridge lines
    • US: Land III & XXIV Corps & attack defense lines to North & South
execution easter sunday 1945
Execution – Easter Sunday-1945
  • US: After heavy NGS bombardment, land 2 corps (2 div each) on west side
    • III corps proceeds to left & XXIV to right
  • Marines turn North & Army south into 1st defense line
    • Ushijimadelays counterattack until 12 April:
    • Awaited massive air-sea attacks on 5th Fleet
    • Counterattack easily absorbed by XXIV
  • MeanwhileIII corps overran most of central & North Okinawa
    • Buckner shifts portions of III Corps to southern engagement
final assault results
Final Assault & Results
  • 18 June Buckner launches final assault on 3rd line:
    • Buckner is killed by Japanese shell
    • III corps commander takes over
      • Declares Oki secure on 21 June 1945
  • Throughout numerous Kamikazeattacks conducted on the Fleet
    • Launched in 10 major waves severely damage fleet
    • Last wave launched on 22 June
  • Results:
    • Okinawa secured for base of operations for Allied invasion of Japan
    • Casualties:
      • 10th Army: 7613 KIA/31800 WIA
      • Kamikazes sink30 ships/damage 365 + 5K KIA
      • Japanese: 142K+
        • (including Oki civilians)
japan under siege
Japan Under Siege
  • Following establishment of base at Okinawa, Japan constantly under attack from air and sea
    • Duration: June-August 1945
  • The greatest direct impact came from land and sea based air
  • Curtis LeMay => introduces new Air Force tactic =>
    • From precision bombing to incendiary area bombing
    • Conducts low altitude night attacks (like RAF)
strategic bombing
Strategic Bombing
  • Strategic air campaign intensifies from Oct 1944 to Aug 1945
    • Tokyo fire storm kills 83K civilians;
  • Japan prepares to resist to end:
    • Prepares up to 5K Kamikazeplanes & pilots (300-400 launched/hour)
    • Also suicide speed boats with high explosives
  • US planned amphibious landing at Kyushu
    • Estimated casualties for invasion force => 700K!
manhattan project
Manhattan Project
  • Meantime Manhattan project successful
    • Proves feasible by summer of 1945
  • VP Truman succeeds FDR upon his death=>
    • Then informed for first time of Atomic Bomb weapon
  • Truman decides to use it on Japan:
    • On 6Aub45=> B-29 drops first Atomic Bomb over Hiroshima
      • 90K people die in huge blast
    • 3 days later => same thing over Nagasaki
  • The atomic genie is now out of the bottle!
japan surrenders
Japan Surrenders
  • Japan’s responseto Atom Bomb:
    • Japanese cabinet argued no such weapon exists until Nagasaki
    • Remained deadlocked over surrender
    • Emperor steps in and orders Japan’s surrender
    • Conditioned on his remaining in ceremonial position
  • Japan surrenders (Sept 2,1945):
    • Japan’s delegation sign surrender instrument:
    • Signed aboard USS Missouri (MacArthur presiding)
world war ii assessment
World War II- Assessment
  • WW2 most destructive war in human history:
    • Cold War begins with A-Bomb always in shadows
  • War finally ended Hitler’s threat of world domination
    • Along w/Mussolini & Japan’s Imp Gov
  • From a tactical & operational perspective:
    • WW2 restored tactical & Op mobility to Battlefield
      • Tanks, A/C, ABN units integrated & employed for land warfare
      • Carrier Air for war at sea
    • Amphibious operations for power projection:
      • Island Hopping strategy in SW & Central Pacific
      • Amphibious Ops at great distances in Central pacific
    • Logistics/supply system allowed nonstop deployed Fleet
assessment 2
  • New technology & weapon enhancements:
    • Radar/Sonar & submarine warfare proved effective:
      • Enhanced Interdiction & protection of SLOC
    • Improved C3I & better operational control & coordination
  • Superior allied Intel collection & analysis (Ultra & Magic):
    • Deception & perception management
    • All gave distinct advantage to allies
  • Superior command, control, & communications:
    • effective integration/coordination of allair/sea/land =>
      • directed forces together toward common op. purpose
  • Superior mobilization of industrial might:
    • all above supported by unmatched Log system & MPN
    • War economy & industrial capacity & vast available MPN
    • All effectively directed toward national objectives
assessment 3
  • WW2 continued WW1’s tactical develop & op concepts:
    • Evolutionary process of improvement & refinement for:
      • Blitzkrieg w/tanks;
      • strategic bombing;
      • submarine warfare;
      • Amphibious doctrine (w L/L)
  • In contrast to WWI:
    • Destruction was much greater scale (civilian & property)
    • Holocaust & Nazi atrocities shocking
    • Strategic bombing killed 100ks- cities/civilian population
    • Atomic bomb => Nuclear weapons => MAD Cold War strategy of 20th cent.
  • Post WWII Cold War would make world bipolar
    • West versus East Europe divided world following WWII
    • NATO versus Warsaw Pact
    • Democracy & capitalism vs. Soviet dominated Communism
  • War also ended or soon ended Western Empires
    • NTL: relative peace (i.e. no world wars) to present
  • Although certainly “a hard and bitter peace” followed- JFK
backup slides

Backup Slides

(The Details)

two separate pacific drives continue 1943 44
Two separate Pacific Drives- continue (1943-44)
  • British question efficiency of Two Drive Strategy- (why?)
  • US response?
    • Both drives mutually supporting?
    • Real reason?
    • (Macarthur vs King & Nimitz)
  • Brits response: mutually competing (scarce resources)
  • Macarthur’s advance in South West Pacific- (Map):
    • Op Objective: Philippines (leap frog over hard points)
    • Establish air strips for fighter escorted bombers =>
    • Protect & further advance west
  • Order of Battle:
    • Australian 7th & US 32nd Divisions
    • Japan: 11K on New Guinea
  • Macarthur’s operational objective & strategy:
    • Defend & protect Australia & its LOCs
    • Control New Guinea
    • Deny secure Japanese basing in SW Pacific
papua execution
  • MacArthur deployed US & Australian forces to Port Moresby
    • Then attacked Buna(where allies get bogged down)
  • MacArthur becomes impatient with lack of progress
    • Sends LTG Eichelberger to fix hold up
    • He swiftly improves supply lines & combat power
    • Improves food & morale
    • Brings in tanks to support infantry
papua results
  • All operational objectives gained =>
    • US regains operational initiative:
    • Japanese driven from Port Moresby & US holds Guadalcanal
  • Buna captured within a month
    • Sanananda taken a month after
    • Several hard lessons learned WRT reducing Japanese defenses
    • US Casualties: 8500
sw pacific drive objectives
SW Pacific Drive- Objectives
  • Two separate Pacific Drives- continued (1943-44)
    • In SW Theater Mac’s Op Objective: PI
    • Mac’s immediateobjective: isolate Rabaul & accelerate his advance
    • 1st Calvary Det (1000 troops) assault Admiralty islands- specifically=> Los Negroes:
      • (High risk op- barely in range of CAS)
    • Mac is lucky: defenders concentratedwhere?
      • East end-=> Allows US attackers time for re-enforcements =>
      • Beat off Japan’s counter-attacks-
  • Hollandia (New Guinea)
    • The next target:
    • Tactical & operational objectives:
    • Isolate 40K more Japanese troops
    • Secure 3 Japan built air strips for further advances
biak island
Biak Island
  • Biaksoon taken after Wakde (325 mi west of Hollandia):
    • Wakde & Biak’sOperational significance?
    • Within range of PI with American Aircraft
  • Japan also recognized their Operational significance:
    • Prepare to attack Biak w/large Amphib & Naval force
    • Operational objective: preclude US air strikes on PI
  • Japanese strike force hastily withdrawn prior to attack:
    • False reports of large US Naval force prompts pull out
  • Japan soon assembles even larger assault force:
    • Prepares to attack Biakonce again:
    • Fortunately for Macarthur, what changes Japan’s mind?
  • Why do they cancel attack & deploy to Central Pacific?
submarine campaign pacific52
Submarine Campaign- Pacific
  • Most effective offense throughout Pacific:
    • Submarine (SS) attack on Japanese commerce
  • Slow start at beginning due to number of reasons
    • Lack of leadership & tactical skill (peacetime COs)
    • Faulty torpedoes & denial of problem at BUWEPS
    • Self destruction of USS Tang
  • Once solved => Japanese Navy & merchants very vulnerable:
    • Japanese conducted no serious prep against SS threat
      • Prior to & during early part of War
    • No adequate staff or command level attention devoted
    • No convoy system developed or anti-SS resources
    • When problem finally recognized => too late
measure of effectiveness
Measure of Effectiveness
  • MOE: total Japanese Naval tonnage sunk: 577K
    • 1113 Merchants & 201 warships
      • (to include: BBs & CVs)
    • SUBPAC losses: 52 subs (22% of force)
  • Strategic Impact:
    • Major impact on Japanese war economy – why?
    • Interdicted vital raw materials (oil & steel)
    • Key reason why Japanese started the war in first place
the marshalls kwajalein dec 43
The Marshalls: Kwajalein (Dec’43)
  • Following Tarawa => Marshall Island group next:
    • TF58 (Mitscher) & Adm Turner (COMPHIB) invade
      • Six CVs, 6 light CRs, 3 BBs plus SS screen & amphibs
    • Target: Kwajalein Atoll(Map)
    • 8000 Japanese defended (but mostly admin personnel)
  • US invasion success
    • (Thanks toTarawa’s L/L)
    • Several improvements in combat hydro recon made (UDT)
    • Extensive NGF support prep
    • Improved C3 & coordination between USMC & Navy
hollandia s execution
  • MG Eichelberger achieves tactical surprise w/2 infantry divisions
    • Japan responds by landing 18th Army:
      • Inflict 9K US casualties
    • CV air attack Japanese ships
    • But within month => Japanese demoralized troops withdraw
    • US now has 3 more airstrips to support its advance
  • Wakde& its airstrip successfully taken late May:
    • Wakde 150 mile west off New Guinea- (see Map)
saipan s execution
Saipan’s Execution
  • Nimitz insists that 5th Flt attacksSaipan before Japan’s defense completed
  • LTG Smith USMC attack w/2nd, 4th & 27th Inf. 20K complies
    • Sharp bitter fighting ensues & Japanese resist
    • Japanese eventually pushed to north side of Island
    • Then Japanese launch largest Banzai attack of war
  • Results: US 14K casualties
    • Japan: 32K KIA w/few survivors
    • Civilians also killed by own troops or commit suicide
guam tinian
Guam & Tinian
  • Guam & Tinianalso were slated to be taken:
    • USMC 3rd & Army 77th Infantry to attack Guam
    • USMC 2nd & 4th & Army 27th Infantry divisions
      • Tasked to take Tinian following Saipan
  • US secures Tinian & Guam by late July & early Aug after hard fighting
    • By late Fall => B-29sable to launch strikes on Japan
battle of pi sea58
Battle of PI Sea
  • Spruance’s advance on Marianas & attack on Saipan has major impact on Japanese strategy
    • Forces Japan to dump Biak& establish 1st Mobile Flt:
    • 1st Mobile Flt comprises:
    • 9 CVs w/400 AC, 5 BB, 13 CR, 28 DDs
      • All units re-deployed to Central Pacific
  • Tactical & Operational Objective:
    • Conduct decisive battle & destroy American 5th Fleet
  • Japanese have a small tactical advantage over US?
    • Japanese tactical advantage? (Zero vs. Hellcat)
    • Zero longer range (but no armor/self seal=> vulnerable)
battle of philippine sea execution
Battle of Philippine Sea -Execution
  • Spruance kept Fleet between Saipan amphibious ops & Japan’s Fleet
    • Japan forced to attack=>
    • 4 waves of 373 AC strike
    • Less than 100 A/C penetrateHellcats CAP
    • Survivors fly into heavy AAA from new BBs
    • Radar used to vector Hellcatsto intercepts
  • TF58 alerted by recon A/C to location of Japanese CVs:
    • VADM Mitshner launches his attack at edge of his aircrafts’ range
    • TF58A/Csink one CV & damage 3 others
    • US submarines also sink 2 Japanese CVs
  • Result: Bulk of Japanese Fleet escapes:
    • But battle has big Operational impact on Japan-what?
    • Major loss of Japan’s CV combat pilots
  • Fleet structure/coordination & power projection validated
leyte island assault continues
Leyte Island Assault Continues
  • LTG Krueger moves 6th Army slowly twd Ormoc on west coast of Leyte
    • Japan strengthen defenses along mountain range (N&S thru Island’s center)
    • 77th Div land south of Ormocport
      • Captured it 3 days later
  • Japanese continued resistance w/ground & ABN attacks:
    • Combined attacks made to seize airfield at Burauen
    • But soon resistance ceased soon after Ormoc’s capture:
      • (Main port for Japanese reinforcements & supply)
  • Result:
    • By Christmas last Leyte port taken- mop up ops follow
    • Leyte => High cost to Japanese: most of 5 divisions lost
    • Navy & air casualties will also impact remaining forces on PI