The Pacific War: Japan versus the Allies

The Pacific War: Japan versus the Allies

The Pacific War: Japan versus the Allies

The Pacific War: Japan versus the Allies

Synopsis

Nineteen ninety-five is a year of celebration and remembrance of the Axis collapse that signaled the end of the Second World War. In August, the world will mark the 50th anniversary of V-J Day. Particularly important, then, is this new historical study o the Pacific phase of World War War II that coers not just the military, but also the political side of the war. Rejecting recent trends that tend to whitewash or demonize the Japanese, this book casts new light on many controversial issues from Pearl Harbor to Hiroshima. It treats the submarine campaign, the air attacks on Japan, the use of the atomic bombs, and Japan's surrender in unusual detail. Finally, it emphasizes that the war was primarily a struggle for the air and sea.

Excerpt

So much has been written about World War II that a new history of the Pacific War may require justification. This book is, at least partly, a product of dissatisfaction with much recent writing on the war, as well as a hope to do, better and to bring out some matters that have been overlooked. Unlike most of what has been written, this book attempts to cover the origins and political aspects of the war, as much as the military side, with detailed discussion of Japanese occupation policies and war aims, and that particularly controversial issue, the use of the atomic bombs, and to provide a concise treatment of the grand strategy of the war and the important technological developments that took place during its course. In the process, I hope, I have refuted many myths, from MacArthur's "letting his planes get caught on the ground hours after Pearl Harbor" to the guns of Singapore that allegedly would not cover the "back" of the island. I also hope that I have devoted due attention to the early part of the war and have avoided the tendency, noticeable in some postwar writings, to concentrate excessively on the victorious part of the war from Midway on.

A number of recent studies on limited topics, especially by Edward Drea, John Lundstrom, Richard Franks, and H. P. Willmott, have proven invaluable in casting new light on particular aspects of the war. But most attempts to provide overall accounts of the Pacific War in the last few decades have been badly flawed.Ronald Spector Eagle Against the Sun . . .

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