Allied Submarines in the Pacific

Starting on the day of the Pearl Harbor raid, the US Navy fleet submarines designed in the 1930’s had a standing order: sink whatever you can of the enemy’s military and merchant fleet. Yamamoto had a different standing order for his boats: save your torpedoes and go for the capital ships. Both strategies had very different implications for their navies.

The Battle of Okinawa, April 1 - July 2, 1945

In March, 1945, the last of the great amphibious operations of the War was in the final stages of planning. Okinawa, in the Ryukyu Islands, was considered part of the Japanese Home Islands. Its proximity to Japan meant that it could not be bypassed.

The Nuremberg Trials

Norway in World War II

The Phony War ended on the night of April 8, 1940 when British warships mined the fjords of Norway to prevent Swedish iron ore from reaching Germany. The Norwegian Ambassador to London protested, but within hours the Allies learned of a massive German thrust through Denmark that was already landing in Norway.

The Invasion of Normandy, June 1944

The Manchurian Border Wars, 1938-1939

In 1938 and 1939, the Kwantung Army occupying Manchuria was severely defeated by the Red Army over a border dispute. Eager to score a victory, the Imperial Japanese Army was engaged in the border dispute near Khasan, where the borders of Manchuria, Korea and Siberia meet.

New Guinea in World War II

When General Douglas MacArthur arrived in Australia after evacuating Bataan, he was a General in search of an offensive army. The Americans did not yet have a fighting force in the Pacific, and the Australians were committed in North Africa, en route to Pacific stations, or in training or garrison in Australia.

The Netherlands in World War II

The Germans attacked The Netherlands on May 10, 1940 to provide access to France to bypass the Maginot Line and entice the Allies to cross the Dutch border to attack their spearhead in Belgium. Within five days they had surrendered. After the surrender, the same day, a bombing mission could not be recalled and killed 40,000 in Rotterdam.

Germany Under the Nazis

In 1932, German President Paul von Hindenburg was asleep in his home. His son woke him with the news that he had defeated Nazi Party leader Adolf Hitler and reelection to the Presidency. “It will still be true in an hour,” he said as he went back to sleep. Dismissive of the “Bohemian Corporal” as he called Hitler, Hindenburg hoped making Hitler Chancellor in January 1933 would appease and quiet him. A year later he was dead, and Hitler folded the powers of the Presidency into his own.

Battle of Midway, June 3-6, 1942

Midway Atoll is 600 miles away from Hawaii. Almost immediately upon taking command, Commander in Chief Pacific Fleet (CINCPAC) Chester W. Nimitz asked the island commander what he would need to defend the island against attack. "More of everything," the commander replied. Nimitz responded with more men, planes, barbed wire and guns.


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