Carrier Strike: The Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, October 1942

Carrier Strike: The Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, October 1942

by Eric Hammel
     
 

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CARRIER STRIKE The Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, October 1942 Eric Hammel The Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, a strategic naval action in the bitter Guadalcanal Campaign, was history’s fourth carrier-versus-carrier naval battle. Though technically a Japanese victory, the battle proved to be Japan’s last serious attempt to win the Pacific War by…  See more details below

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CARRIER STRIKE The Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, October 1942 Eric Hammel The Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands, a strategic naval action in the bitter Guadalcanal Campaign, was history’s fourth carrier-versus-carrier naval battle. Though technically a Japanese victory, the battle proved to be Japan’s last serious attempt to win the Pacific War by means of an all-out carrier confrontation. It was during the first four carrier battles—in the six-month period from early May through late October 1942—that the fate of Japan’s small, elite naval air arm was sealed. It was at Coral Sea, in May, that Japan’s juggernaut across the Pacific was blunted. It was at Midway, in June, that Japan’s great carrier fleet was cut down to manageable size. And it was at Eastern Solomons, in August, and Santa Cruz, in October, that Japan’s last best carrier air groups were ground to dust. After their technical victory at Santa Cruz, the Japanese withdrew their carriers from the South Pacific—and were never able to use them again as a strategically decisive weapon. Of the four Japanese aircraft carriers that participated in the Santa Cruz battle, only one survived the war. The Japanese “victory” at Santa Cruz cost Japan her last best hope to win the war in the Pacific. Once Japan’s veteran carrier air groups had been shredded at off Guadalcanal, at Eastern Solomons and Santa Cruz, Japanese carriers ceased to be a strategic weapon. Carrier Strike is the definitive history of the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands. Following Santa Cruz and the subsequent series of air and surface engagements known as the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal, the Imperial Navy’s Combined Fleet never again attempted a meaningful strategic showdown with the U.S. Pacific Fleet. Though several subsequent surface actions in the Solomons were clearly Japanese victories, their results were short-lived. After November 1942, Japan could not again muster the staying power—or the willpower—to wage a strategic war with her navy. The Santa Cruz clash was deemed a Japanese victory because U.S. naval forces withdrew from the battlefield. That is how victory and defeat are strictly determined. But on the broader, strategic, level, the U.S. Navy won at Santa Cruz—because it was able to achieve its strategic goal of holding the line and buying time. Japan was unable to achieve her strategic goal of defeating the U.S. Pacific Fleet in a final, decisive, all-or-nothing battle. The technical victory cost Japan any serious hope she had of winning the Pacific naval war. =========== Critical Acclaim for Carrier Clash: The Invasion of Guadalcanal and the Battle of the Eastern Solomons, August 1942: The Bookwatch says: Carrier Clash takes the reader into the air with brave U.S. Navy pilots . . . [It] is an important contribution to the military history of World war II’s battle for control of the Pacific. The Book World says: Carrier Clash is a stark revelation of a complex encounter. Military Magazine says: Mr. Hammel presents the entire battle in a clear, easy-to-follow manner while interjecting interesting views of the [Battle of the Eastern Solomons] as seen by the participants on both sides. Military Review says: The book is loaded with great charts (maps), order of battle, and other hard to find details. Although Hammel describes the land and surface ship battles, his forte is his vivid descriptions of the aerial dogfights during the [Guadalcanal] invasion and the Battle of the Eastern Solomons. Canadian Military History says: Eric Hammel continues his tradition of exciting, well crafted books on the Pacific War with this account of the carrier battles that accompanied the American landings on Guadalcanal. . . . There is no denying that this is a cracking good read and an excellent companion to Hammel’s other books on the Guadalcanal Campaign. Sea Power says: Acclaimed military historian Eric Hammel presents a landmark history of the Battle of the Eastern Solomons . . . Drawing on newly declassified information from U.S. and Japanese sources, and on numerous other archival sources, Hammel brings a fresh perspective to the outcome of the war as a whole. . . . [He] describes with precision and insight the key events in the Guadalcanal/Eastern Solomons campaigns, the strategic implications of the battle, and the impact on the overall battle plans of both adversaries.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781890988135
Publisher:
Pacifica Military History
Publication date:
01/25/2010
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
455
Sales rank:
1,238,425
File size:
356 KB

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