Facing Fearful Odds: The Siege of Wake Island

By Gregory J. W. Urwin | Go to book overview

PREFACE

The siege of Wake Island, 8-23 December 1941, was a relatively small affair, but it had a powerful effect on this nation's morale. The fight for Wake did not greatly alter the course of the Pacific war, but it took on a symbolic importance that outweighed its strategic consequences. The stubborn defense of the atoll lifted the spirits of the American people and affirmed their desire to avenge Pearl Harbor. Thanks to government propaganda and a cooperative media, the Wake Island campaign assumed a mythic quality before it even ended. Continuing press attention and a popular Hollywood film about the atoll's defense stirred American pride, increasing both Marine Corps recruiting and war-bond sales. Today, the last-stand quality of the Wake battle still attracts widespread interest.

Facing Fearful Odds is based on interviews and correspondence gathered from more than seventy of Wake's American defenders and on research in archival and printed sources. This study attempts to correct the myths that shroud what happened on the atoll.

On one level, this is a conventional campaign history. It explains how America's ambitions in the Pacific Ocean and the rise of airpower endowed a barren coral strip with strategic value. The book covers the planning and political struggles that began Wake Island's transformation into a naval air station and submarine base, the U.S. Navy's eleventh-hour efforts to garrison and fortify Wake, and the various air, sea, and land attacks that resulted in the atoll's capture by the Imperial Japanese Navy.

I have parted with convention, however, in how I reconstruct the battle for Wake. Most military history is told from the top down, resting on

-xv-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Facing Fearful Odds: The Siege of Wake Island
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 727

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.