To the Far Side of Hell: The Battle for Peleliu 1944

Overview


A poignant account and analysis of the bloody battle in the Pacific.

To the Far Side of Hell
is the story of the World War II battle for the Pacific island of Peleliu in the autumn of 1944. Although this battle is far less well known--even among U.S. Marine Corps veterans--than Tarawa, Iwo Jima, or Okinawa, the savagery of the fighting, the courage and determination displayed, and the casualty rate suffered ...
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Overview


A poignant account and analysis of the bloody battle in the Pacific.

To the Far Side of Hell
is the story of the World War II battle for the Pacific island of Peleliu in the autumn of 1944. Although this battle is far less well known--even among U.S. Marine Corps veterans--than Tarawa, Iwo Jima, or Okinawa, the savagery of the fighting, the courage and determination displayed, and the casualty rate suffered by the units of the 1st Marine Division can claim equal significance.

Peleliu was a troubled operation from the start.  Since the fast-moving situation in the Central Pacific seemed to have removed any pressing need to occupy the Palau Islands, it is arguable that the battle was not necessary. For the planners of the island-hopping campaign, the operation was a distraction from a more important goal--the Marianas.

The 1st Marine Division, weary from earlier campaigns, was not given needed resources prior to the invasion, and there were damaging tensions within the senior ranks. When the Marines landed, they came up against Japan’s new defensive technique--a garrison determined to die where they stood, fortified in deep, complex bunker systems. In searing heat, and exposed to the dug-in Japanese guns amidst the ridges and gulches of an unsuspected labyrinth of concrete-hard coral, the Marines found the predicted short conflict turned into a protracted, bloody 71-day battle.

 

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“A concise narrative overview of the American conquest of the island of Peleliu during World War II in an easy to read, appealing format. The maps and photographs are generally excellent, and the illustrations by Tom Lea are superb.”--Lance Janda, author of Stronger than Custom: West Point and the Admission of Women
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780817352813
  • Publisher: University of Alabama Press
  • Publication date: 8/7/2005
  • Series: Fire Ant Series
  • Edition description: Revised
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author


Derrick Wright is an independent scholar and author of Tarawa--A Hell of a Way to Die and Iwo Jima 1945: The Marines Raise the Flag on Mount Suribachi.
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Table of Contents

Ch. 1 Plans and planners 13
Ch. 2 Desecrate - task force 58 in March 1944 25
Ch. 3 The old breed 34
Ch. 4 'Here's Pavuvu' 44
Ch. 5 The tiger's den 56
Ch. 6 One day in hell 64
Ch. 7 Death in the afternoon 81
Ch. 8 The second round 93
Ch. 9 Wildcats on Angaur 101
Ch. 10 Bloody nose ridge 108
Ch. 11 Tightening the noose 126
Ch. 12 To the bitter end 141
Ch. 13 The reckoning 159
App. 1 USMC command & staff, Peleliu 164
App. 2 Estimated Japanese strength, Peleliu 169
App. 3 Casualties : American & Japanese 170
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