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World War II: Battle of Midway and the Aleutian Campaign
The Atlantic ^ | Aug 28, 2011 | Alan Taylor

Posted on 10/04/2011 5:30:20 PM PDT by MtnClimber

Six months after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Japan prepared to deal one more decisive blow to the U.S. Naval forces in the Pacific. The aim was to destroy U.S. aircraft carriers and occupy the strategically important Midway Atoll, a tiny island nearly halfway between Asia and North America that was home to a U.S. Naval air station. American codebreakers deciphered the Japanese plans, allowing the U.S. Navy to plan an ambush. On June 3, 1942, the Battle of Midway commenced.

(Excerpt) Read more at theatlantic.com ...


TOPICS: History
KEYWORDS: aleutians; midway; pacific; wwii
Many WWII photos. Part 11 of 20 WWII retrospective. There are 45 photos in this part.Many photos that I have not seen before.
1 posted on 10/04/2011 5:30:23 PM PDT by MtnClimber
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To: tubebender; NormsRevenge

WWII ping.


2 posted on 10/04/2011 5:32:59 PM PDT by MtnClimber (Obama unemployment equals dependence on government.)
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To: MtnClimber
Midway Atoll:


3 posted on 10/04/2011 5:38:08 PM PDT by DeoVindiceSicSemperTyrannis (V'al kulam eloha selichot S'lach lanu m'chal lanu kaper lanu)
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To: DeoVindiceSicSemperTyrannis

No where to hide there!


4 posted on 10/04/2011 5:41:09 PM PDT by MtnClimber (Obama unemployment equals dependence on government.)
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To: MtnClimber

Breathtaking photos! Thanks! WWII Ping


5 posted on 10/04/2011 5:45:50 PM PDT by Huskrrrr
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To: MtnClimber

Yup. Tis a really small island. Nothing but an airstrip it seems...


6 posted on 10/04/2011 5:46:07 PM PDT by DeoVindiceSicSemperTyrannis (V'al kulam eloha selichot S'lach lanu m'chal lanu kaper lanu)
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To: DeoVindiceSicSemperTyrannis

You can link to previous photo essays at the article. Here is the list so far:

1.Before the War
2.The Invasion of Poland and the Winter War
3.Axis Invasions and the Fall of France
4.The Battle of Britain
5.Conflict Spreads Around the Globe
6.Operation Barbarossa
7.Pearl Harbor
8.The American Home Front in Color
9.Daring Raids and Brutal Reprisals
10.Internment of Japanese Americans
11.Battle of Midway and the Aleutian Campaign
12.The North African Campaign
13.Women at War
14.The Eastern Front
15.The Pacific Islands
16.The Allied Invasion of Europe
17.Coming October 9th
18.Coming October 16th
19.Coming October 23rd
20.Coming October 30th


7 posted on 10/04/2011 5:48:27 PM PDT by MtnClimber (Obama unemployment equals dependence on government.)
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To: MtnClimber

Super post. Thanks.

Midway was our Trafalgar. It should be celebrated as such.


8 posted on 10/04/2011 6:03:04 PM PDT by Jacquerie
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To: MtnClimber

what an awesome post. many thanks.


9 posted on 10/04/2011 6:14:39 PM PDT by beebuster2000
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To: MtnClimber
American codebreakers deciphered the Japanese plans,

And messed with their minds as well. The Japs kept referring to "AF" (their code for Midway). We thought it was but weren't sure, so we had Midway send an uncoded message saying they were out of water. Sure enough, the Japs telegraphed that "AF" reported they were out of water.

What blew my mind in reading about the Pacific War was that by FEBRUARY of 1942 we were already launching carrier-based air attacks on some of the Jap-held islands. I thought we didn't start to bounce back until the Coral Sea in May '42.

10 posted on 10/04/2011 6:36:27 PM PDT by Oatka ("A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves." –Bertrand de Jouvenel)
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To: MtnClimber
Yes, the photos are new to me also. The SBD with damage to the empennage is a good example as well as the stern quarter shots of Enterprise and Yorktown.

My dad was assigned to the Aleutians and said it was an ugly mess. The US troops were ill equipped to deal with the cold and suffered terribly. They were issued tropical gear.

11 posted on 10/04/2011 6:52:34 PM PDT by pfflier
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To: pfflier

One of my uncles was on a ship in Pearl Harbor that was hit by a bomb in the Japanese attack. He earned a medal from repeatedly going back onboard to bring out injured sailors. It was hard to get him to talk much about it.


12 posted on 10/04/2011 6:56:46 PM PDT by MtnClimber (Obama unemployment equals dependence on government.)
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To: MtnClimber
My dad opened up when I joined the USAF. By coincidence, we had been assigned to some of the same bases years apart, Chanute AFB for tech school, Malmstrom AFB (for him Great Falls AAFB) and the Aleutians (I was assigned to Shemya).

He told me things he didn't even tell my mother.

13 posted on 10/04/2011 7:19:19 PM PDT by pfflier
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To: pfflier

My uncle was married to my father’s sister who was just older by a year. My uncle passed away a few years ago and no one else knew much more about Pearl Harbor or anything after that. He just did not want to remember or talk about it.


14 posted on 10/04/2011 7:26:12 PM PDT by MtnClimber (Obama unemployment equals dependence on government.)
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To: pfflier

I also worked with someone, when I was just out of college, who was in the first wave to invade Iwo Jima. He was one of few to make it out from that first wave. He had a partner in a fox hole that went out at night to go to the bathroom. He was hit in the head by a stray bullet. That must have been real hell.


15 posted on 10/04/2011 7:34:55 PM PDT by MtnClimber (Obama unemployment equals dependence on government.)
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To: MtnClimber

Thanks for posting this. Some of the pictures were new to me. Very interesting.


16 posted on 10/04/2011 8:19:28 PM PDT by goldfinch
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To: Oatka
I enjoyed "The Lonely Ships"; by Edward P. Hoyt which chronicled the Asiatic Fleet in China and the Philippines at the outbreak of WWII. These were not the top-of-line American ships, and many were there to serve out their time mostly peacefully in coastal or close waters. They could maneuver, but could not make the speeds that modern warships of the 40's could in open waters. Some had formidable naval guns. None had the communications they could have used to operate in mass formations.Logistically they were virtually unsupportable. Most probably could not have withdrawn any further than Singapore and Manila Bay (at night) because the Japanese controlled the air and therefore the day. Though they were expendable since there was not much in early 1942 that the U.S. could do to bring them back, they did a remarkable job of tying up a vast number of Japanese military assets, sunk a few ships, slipped a few of their more valuable ships to India for repair and refitting, made good decisions about scuttling ships and large boats which would have been valuable salvage for the Japanese forces, and brought a lot of sailors and naval guns to Corregidor. As in many another war, the treacherous surprise action that trapped this fleet in the Yellow Sea and the East China Sea left this fleet, such as it was, right on the nautical threshold of waters strategically critical to Japan, and shackled them with the task of clearing the area. That took the Japanese time on the defensive that would perhaps have served them well on the offensive. In a classic strategic manner, we traded this old fleet with its antiquated fleet and its thousands of sailors first to try to help the Americans at Corregidor, and also to help the Brits at Singapore. We traded heroes for time, because that's about all we could do. These heroes helped by us by buying time for the likes of the Battle of Midway. There was a lot of war left after that, but there were still heroes left in America, at least enough enough for the remaining battles of WWII. Iam an elderly Marine, but I salute the swabbies of the Asiatic Fleet, most of whom lost their lives at the outset of WWII buying the time our Country needed to shift to the offensive and earn the unconditional surrender of the foe in the end
17 posted on 10/04/2011 8:42:46 PM PDT by mathurine
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To: Oatka
I enjoyed "The Lonely Ships"; by Edward P. Hoyt which chronicled the Asiatic Fleet in China and the Philippines at the outbreak of WWII. These were not the top-of-line American ships, and many were there to serve out their time mostly peacefully in coastal or close waters. They could maneuver, but could not make the speeds that modern warships of the 40's could in open waters. Some had formidable naval guns. None had the communications they could have used to operate in mass formations.Logistically they were virtually unsupportable. Most probably could not have withdrawn any further than Singapore and Manila Bay (at night) because the Japanese controlled the air and therefore the day. Though they were expendable since there was not much in early 1942 that the U.S. could do to bring them back, they did a remarkable job of tying up a vast number of Japanese military assets, sunk a few ships, slipped a few of their more valuable ships to India for repair and refitting, made good decisions about scuttling ships and large boats which would have been valuable salvage for the Japanese forces, and brought a lot of sailors and naval guns to Corregidor. As in many another war, the treacherous surprise action that trapped this fleet in the Yellow Sea and the East China Sea left this fleet, such as it was, right on the nautical threshold of waters strategically critical to Japan, and shackled them with the task of clearing the area. That took the Japanese time on the defensive that would perhaps have served them well on the offensive. In a classic strategic manner, we traded this old fleet with its antiquated fleet and its thousands of sailors first to try to help the Americans at Corregidor, and also to help the Brits at Singapore. We traded heroes for time, because that's about all we could do. These heroes helped by us by buying time for the likes of the Battle of Midway. There was a lot of war left after that, but there were still heroes left in America, at least enough enough for the remaining battles of WWII. Iam an elderly Marine, but I salute the swabbies of the Asiatic Fleet, most of whom lost their lives at the outset of WWII buying the time our Country needed to shift to the offensive and earn the unconditional surrender of the foe in the end
18 posted on 10/04/2011 8:43:01 PM PDT by mathurine
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To: MtnClimber
The WW2 vets were something else.

My dad spent 18 months in Italy. He talked about everything Italy except the war. When I'd ask, he tell me “Go talk to Gene (his older brother), he had more time in the Aleutians & Philippines than I had in the service”.

My uncle Gene would absolutely not talk about the Aleutians. He would talk a tad about the Philippines, but only how great the people were.

I found out just recently from my youngest uncle (the youngest brother), my uncle was one of the first to arrive on a graves detail after his friends were killed in friendly fire bombing\straffing in Kisak (Kiska?). I can't image the horror these guys went through.

They were something else.

19 posted on 10/04/2011 9:12:20 PM PDT by stylin19a (obama..."Fredo-Smart")
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To: IncPen

ping


20 posted on 10/04/2011 10:13:56 PM PDT by Nailbiter
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To: Oatka
What blew my mind in reading about the Pacific War was that by FEBRUARY of 1942 we were already launching carrier-based air attacks on some of the Jap-held islands. I thought we didn't start to bounce back until the Coral Sea in May '42.
Bounce back? Those were desperate operations to keep the Japanese distracted and off balance. The closest we got to any serious confrontation was the abortive campaign to rescue Wake Island. The operations were useful in giving us tactical experience and learning things like the poor quality of our 5" anti-aircraft ammunition.
21 posted on 10/05/2011 12:49:51 AM PDT by rmlew ("Mosques are our barracks, minarets our bayonets, domes our helmets, the believers our soldiers.")
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To: mathurine
I enjoyed "The Lonely Ships"; by Edward P. Hoyt

Other good ones: "The Fleet the Gods Forgot" by W.G. Winslow (nice detail on each ship), "The Last Battle Station" (USS Houston) by Duane Schultz, "Pawns of War" (total FUBAR on the loss of the USS Pecos and USS Langley) by Dwight R. Messimer, "Where Away" (USS Marblehead - kept in one piece by a steel cable) by George Perry and Isabel Leighton, and the off-the-wall "Cruise of the Lanikai" by an old China hand Kemp Tolley (possible suicide mission saved by the bombing of the Philippines).

"The Pacific War" by Costello is another comprehensive read of the naval and island battles.

we traded this old fleet with its antiquated fleet and its thousands of sailors first to try to help the Americans at Corregidor, and also to help the Brits at Singapore.

As well as the Dutch in Java. Brave men in antiquated ships sent up against the world's 3rd most powerful navy. At least two were sunk with all hands. The Charge of the Light Brigade had nothing on those men. Heroes indeed.

22 posted on 10/05/2011 9:03:42 AM PDT by Oatka ("A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves." –Bertrand de Jouvenel)
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To: rmlew
Bounce back? Those were desperate operations to keep the Japanese distracted and off balance.
I used that term as, from many books I had read, I got the impression that we were flat on our backs after Pearl Harbor and couldn't do anything to stop the Jap rampage.

. . . and learning things like the poor quality of our 5" anti-aircraft ammunition.
Boy, that period was a litany of how unprepared we were. When the USS Langley was under horizontal bomber attack in early '42 their WWI 3" couldn't reach higher that 15,000 feet. The Japs quickly recognized that, came in at about 17,000 and used the attacks as a training session for the green pilots and bombardiers.

On Bataan, we had WWI Stokes mortars that had an 80% misfire rate. The few times we retook a position, the contemptuous Japs had left flowers stuck in the tubes. I also understand that the Filipinos were issued M1917 Enfields that were missing cartridge case extractors, so they had to carry a wooden ramrod to knock out the cases.

23 posted on 10/05/2011 9:20:40 AM PDT by Oatka ("A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves." –Bertrand de Jouvenel)
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24 posted on 10/05/2011 10:31:53 AM PDT by TheOldLady (FReepmail me to get ON or OFF the ZOT LIGHTNING ping list)
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To: MtnClimber

Great pictures! One comment - in picture 18, should be “Mogami” class cruiser, not “Mogima”...


25 posted on 10/05/2011 12:11:58 PM PDT by bt_dooftlook (Democrats - the party of Amnesty, Abortion, and Adolescence)
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