Yamamoto Isoroku

Overview

Admiral Yamamoto Isoroku was the defining Japanese naval commander of World War II. Although by no means part of the militarist clique that dominated Japanese politics in the 1930s, when war came Yamamoto was completely committed to his country's cause and planned and executed the daring pre-emptive strike on Pearl Harbor that so damaged the US Pacific Fleet and ushered in the Pacific War.

Yamamoto's career in the Imperial Japanese Navy started in the early years of the 20th ...

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Yamamoto Isoroku

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Overview

Admiral Yamamoto Isoroku was the defining Japanese naval commander of World War II. Although by no means part of the militarist clique that dominated Japanese politics in the 1930s, when war came Yamamoto was completely committed to his country's cause and planned and executed the daring pre-emptive strike on Pearl Harbor that so damaged the US Pacific Fleet and ushered in the Pacific War.

Yamamoto's career in the Imperial Japanese Navy started in the early years of the 20th century and he saw service in the Russo-Japanese War, being wounded in the battle of Tsushima in 1904, before going on to study at Harvard University and serve as a naval attaché in the inter-war years, an experience that was supposed to give him a unique insight into the American psyche. Despite his opposition to the Japanese invasion of Manchuria in 1931 and war with China in 1937, as well as the tripartite pact with Germany and Italy, he retained his position as commander-in-chief of the combined fleet in the warlike Tojo administration and was it was in this position that he led the IJN to war in 1941.
Despite the success of the Pearl Harbor operation, Yamamoto's subsequent handling of the Japanese combined fleet can be called into question. Seeking a 'decisive battle' against the US Pacific Fleet, Yamamoto took up an aggressive position in the Pacific and fought the US Navy at the battle of the Coral Sea in May 1942 and the battle of Midway. Midway can be said to be Yamamoto's 'hour of destiny' as he planned and executed the battle. Though unaware that the Japanese Naval code had been broken, he fatally divided his forces, leaving them vulnerable to piecemeal destruction. The final campaign commanded by Yamamoto was that around Guadalcanal, where Yamamoto's myth of excellence will be totally laid bare. Despite a considerable numerical advantage over the Americans, Yamamoto never brought this advantage to bear. The result was a devastating defeat for the IJN and, eventually, the death of Yamamoto himself.

This title will use these key campaigns to analyze Yamamoto's command style and strategies, and assess how these impacted upon the course of the war in the Pacific and Japan's chances for success.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"In Yamamoto Isoroku (Japanese nomenclature places family name first) author Mark Stille delves into key early-WWII Japanese campaigns orchestrated by arguably one of Japan's most famous admirals. And as he traces Yamamoto's life from upbringing to Imperial Combined Fleet Command, Stille offers insight into the mind of the man behind the legend."
--Rachel E. Veres, www.cybermodeler.com
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781849087315
  • Publisher: Osprey Publishing, Limited
  • Publication date: 6/19/2012
  • Series: Command Series
  • Pages: 64
  • Sales rank: 442,407
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark E. Stille (Commander, United States Navy, retired) received his BA in History from the University of Maryland and also holds an MA from the Naval War College. He has worked in the intelligence community for 30 years including tours on the faculty of the Naval War College, on the Joint Staff and on US Navy ships. He is currently a senior analyst working in the Washington DC area. He is the author of numerous Osprey titles, focusing on naval history in the Pacific. He is also the author of several wargames.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 4

The early years 6

The military life 8

The hour of destiny 14

Opposing commanders 51

When war is done 55

Inside the mind 59

A life in words 62

Further reading 63

Index 64

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