Eagle Against the Sun: The American War with Japan

Eagle Against the Sun: The American War with Japan

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by Ronald H. Spector
     
 

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Historian Ronald H. Spector, drawing on declassified intelligence files, an abundance of British and American archival material, Japanese scholarship and documents, and the research and memoirs of scholars, politicians, and the military men, presents a thrilling narrative of American war in the Pacific.

Spector reassesses U.S. and Japanese strategy and offers…  See more details below

Overview

Historian Ronald H. Spector, drawing on declassified intelligence files, an abundance of British and American archival material, Japanese scholarship and documents, and the research and memoirs of scholars, politicians, and the military men, presents a thrilling narrative of American war in the Pacific.

Spector reassesses U.S. and Japanese strategy and offers some provocative interpretations. He shows that the dual advance across the Pacific by MacArthur and Nimitz was less a product of strategic calculation and more a pragmatic solution to bureaucratic, doctrinal, and public relations problems facing the Army and Navy. He also argues that Japan made its fatal error not in the Midway campaign but in abandoning its offensive strategy after that defeat and allowing itself to be drawn into a war of attrition.

Combining impeccable research with electrifying detail, Spector vividly recreates the major battles, little-known campaigns, and unfamiliar events of this brutal 44-month struggle. He reveals that the U.S. had secret plans to wage unrestricted submarine warfare against Japan months before Pearl Harbor and demonstrates that MacArthur and his commanders ignored important intercepts of Japanese messages that would have saved thousands of lives in Papua and Leyte. He skillfully takes the reader from top-secret strategy meetings in Washington, London, and Tokyo to distant beaches and remote Asian jungles with battle-weary GIs. Throughout, Spector contends that American decisions in the Pacific War were shaped more often by the struggles between the British and the Americans, and between the Army and the Navy, than by strategic considerations. Revealing what really happened in the course of a conflict that ended with the most deadly air raid ever, this contribution to WWII history adds a new dimension to our understanding of the people and forces that determined its outcome.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
A historian at the Army Center for Military History, Spector concentrates on the problem of command in the Southern Pacific theaters, the rivalries between the various U.S. armed services and the problem of allocating resources. PW praised his ability to ``show how even the most efficiently run campaigns unfold against a background of violent dispute.'' November
From the Publisher
"Spector has done the impossible and done it ,with dazzling brilliance. Mining a warehouse of material with absolute control, he has produced a superbly readable, insightful, gripping, unbiased one-volume history of the American-Japanese war that is at the same time a glorious celebration of the American spirit."

— Clay Blair. front page. The Washington Post Book World

"The best one-volume history of that complex conflict... No other presents as balanced a view or provides such terse and searching analyses not only of the great battles but of half-forgotten aspects, such as the impact of blacks and female participants on the services...No future book on the Pacific war will be written without paying due tribute to Eagle Against The Sun."

— Drew Middleton, The New York Times

"Clear, coherent, effective...this is an excellent book... likely to be for a long time to come the standard, comprehensive history of the Pacific Ocean War." — Russell E Weighley, Temple University.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781476727424
Publisher:
Free Press
Publication date:
12/11/2012
Sold by:
SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
592
Sales rank:
193,316
File size:
23 MB
Note:
This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

Ronald H. Spector graduated from John Hopkins University and received his PhD from Yale University. He served with the US Marines in Vietnam and was a Senior Fulbright scholar in India during 1977 and 1978. A frequent contributor to scholarly journals, his publications include: In the Ruins of Empire: The Japanese Surrender and the Battle for Postwar Asia (2007); Professors of War: The Naval War College and the Development of the Naval Profession (2005); At War At Sea: Sailors and Naval Combat in the Twentieth Century (2002); and After Tet: The Bloodiest Year in Vietnam (1994). He is professor of history and international affairs at the Elliott School of International Affairs at The George Washington University.

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