The Pacific War’s Last Invasion
by John Diamond
Pen & Sword’s series Images of War is one of my favorite book ranges for photos of WW2. And Jon Diamond’s ‘The Battle Of Okinawa 1945’ is one of the better books in the series. It goes beyond the general format of tons of photos with interesting captions, because Jon also explains the prelude to the attack on the island.
He uses lots of very clear charts and maps to take us along on the complex offensive by the allied troops on their attack to clear the East Indies and the Philippines of the Japanese and ultimately beat Japan.
Although I still believe the battle for Normandy in France was the single most complex logistical operation of World War 2, we must admire the Americans for their enormous efforts in the War in the Pacific. Taking all these islands back required continuous and sustained amphibious operations, unlike the few large landings in Africa, Italy and France in Europe. And with over 1200 vessels nvolved, the landing on Okinawa was by no means a small undertaking.
Reading about the string of landings and subsequent battles really leaves one in awe regarding the courage and tenacity…… on both sides for that matter.
The book also shows that it was the combination of air, sea and ground forces that made the victory possible. The Americans continuously occupied islands and built new forward airfields on them, so as to constantly enlarge their air cover of the theatre. The US Navy was equally instrumental in the campaign, for their logistical role, their coastal attacks and their area defense against counterattacks a by the Japanese Navy and Air Force.
Last but not least the book shows the valiant role the US Marines played in this part of the world and the war, leading the way in so many of the landings and subsequent battles to free the entire region of the Japanese.
While the book clearly focuses on the battle for Okinawa it does a great job in showing the strategy and battles leading up to that final attack!
Oh, and if you are in for more…. then get Jon’s other book in the series ‘The war in the South Pacific’ (which I have read but not yet published the review of ).
Very much recommended for anyone with the slightest interest in the War in the Pacific! Excellent book. Now I want Jon’s other books too!
The Battle of Okinawa 1945 (Paperback), is available directly from the publisher here.
By Jon Diamond
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Series: Images of War
Published: 4th March 2019
£12.79 (was £15.99)