Following the disastrous Java Sea campaign, the Allies went on the offensive in the Pacific in a desperate attempt to halt the Japanese forces that were rampaging across the region. With the conquest of Australia a very real possibility, the stakes were high. Their target: the Japanese-held Soloman Islands, in particular the southern island of Guadalcanal.
Hamstrung by arcane pre-war thinking and a bureaucratic mind-set, the US Navy had to adapt on the fly in order to compete with the mighty Imperial Japanese Navy, whose ingenuity and creativity thus far had fostered the creation of its Pacific empire. Starting with the amphibious assault on Savo Island, the campaign turned into an attritional struggle where the evenly matched foes sought to grind out a victory.
Following on from his hugely successful book Rising Sun, Falling Skies, Jeffrey Cox tells the gripping story the first Allied offensive of the Pacific War, as the Allies sought to prevent Japan from cutting off Australia and regaining dominance in the Pacific.
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About the Author
Jeffrey R. Cox is a litigation attorney and an independent military historian specializing in World War II, Ancient Greece, and Ancient Rome. His first interest was in the Pacific War, which he has studied for more than 30 years. A student of history, international affairs, and defence policy for most of his life, Cox holds a degree in National Security Policy Studies from The Ohio State University and a doctorate of jurisprudence from Indiana University School of Law. He is a contributor to Military History Online (www.militaryhistoryonline.com) and resides in Indianapolis.
Table of Contents
I. Now What? – Strategic situation in Summer 1942
II. Learning on the Landing – The Invasion of Guadalcanal
III. The Sleeping Watch – The Battle of Savo Island
IV. Expensive Bait – Battle of the Eastern Solomons
V. I am Aoba – The Battle of Cape Esperance
VI. Not Quite Midway – Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands
VII. Barfight in the Dark – The First Naval Battle of Guadalcanal
VIII. The Reckoning Begins – Second Naval Battle of Guadalcanal
IX. Just When You Think – Battles of Tassafaronga and Rennell Island
X. Cartwheeling – Bismarck Sea, Landings on New Georgia and Vella Lavella
XI. Guadalcanal – Minus All the Mistakes
XII. Anti-Climax – Isolation of Rabaul