Marine Mind Set On Iwo Jima - Page 3




 
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February 1st, 2005  
Strongbow
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 03USMC
The issue was indoubt for the 1st Marine Division for along time on Guadalcanal. They lacked sufficient supplies, sufficient naval support, sufficient air power. What Air Craft they did have were held together by cannabilizing wrecked aircraft, and fuel had to landed by floating 50 gallon drums from lighters to the beach then manhandled by Marines to Henderson field.
For awhile they subsisted on captured rations. Better than 85% of the "combat ready" Marines were afflicted with Malaria or other tropical illness'.
The Japanese landed reinforcements several times due to lack of Naval support.
No Guadalcanal wasn't more even.
O3, Thanks for the above but I don't agree with your last sentence.

Guadalcanal was never as one sided as Iwo Jima.

The following is from my link that you hopefully have read.

The near parity of the forces involved, both on land and at sea meant that combat was especially intense and characterized by extreme desperation. Disease also played a significant role in the ground campaign, as both the Japanese and American forces were weakened by malaria in the insect-infested jungles. Both sides had difficulty maintaining their supplies to the island, and in some cases Japanese army units suffered from starvation.
February 1st, 2005  
serbianpower
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Popeye
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charge_7
Heavy firepower doesn't mean much when the enemy is burrowed into the native rock to effect a labyrinth of tunnels and redoubts such that not even 16" naval guns can dislodge them. Heavy firepower didn't win Iwo Jima. The M1 rifle and Marine Corps blood and sweat did.
Well said - as that proved to be the mindset for other valiant battles in WWII as well.

Not enough can be said for our veterans. The appreciation today tends to be very small in quantity because as of today we relish in technology that baffles mankind itself, and many forget the real sacrifices made. It isn't about the politics, money etc. It is ultimately the soldiers' life - which is why it makes me sick that we have people today who waste their time protesting against a war that won't be overturned instead of coming together and supporting our troops and military, not the cause or effect.

That is why WWII will be known as the last great war because that was the last conflict that drove us to a level of patriotism far beyond any other war we have experienced.

Anyways, sorry about that - I just sort of went on a tear... I'm 16 and about the only one that has an appreciation for our sacrifices and vets around my age. It is now almost something I don't go around talking about cos people in school don't really care - so I thought I'd get it off my chest here. :P However, I am sure most already agree, so I'm really not informing the right group of people.... oh well, atleast I feel better.
u can not compare WWII with today situation.
February 1st, 2005  
03USMC
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Strongbow
Quote:
Originally Posted by 03USMC
The issue was indoubt for the 1st Marine Division for along time on Guadalcanal. They lacked sufficient supplies, sufficient naval support, sufficient air power. What Air Craft they did have were held together by cannabilizing wrecked aircraft, and fuel had to landed by floating 50 gallon drums from lighters to the beach then manhandled by Marines to Henderson field.
For awhile they subsisted on captured rations. Better than 85% of the "combat ready" Marines were afflicted with Malaria or other tropical illness'.
The Japanese landed reinforcements several times due to lack of Naval support.
No Guadalcanal wasn't more even.
O3, Thanks for the above but I don't agree with your last sentence.


Guadalcanal was never as one sided as Iwo Jima.

The following is from my link that you hopefully have read.

The near parity of the forces involved, both on land and at sea meant that combat was especially intense and characterized by extreme desperation. Disease also played a significant role in the ground campaign, as both the Japanese and American forces were weakened by malaria in the insect-infested jungles. Both sides had difficulty maintaining their supplies to the island, and in some cases Japanese army units suffered from starvation.

Naval Parity wasn't achieved until late in the Campaign. Pearl Harbor, Coral Sea, and Midway had caused loss's to the Pacific fleet. The initial Task Force left the area with a great deal of the 1st Mar Div's supplies in their holds. Because the were unable to face a Japanese Task Force enroute from Rabual.
The Marines on Guadalcanal underwent nearly nightly Naval Bombardment from the Slot courtsey of the Toyko Express and Air Raids from the IJN base at Rabual. That hardly speaks of parity. It wasn't until The MTB Squadrons were implaced at Tulagi and Destroyers and Cruisers (American and Australian) were sent to the area to harass Japanese shipping.
The Japanese managed to land reinforcements because of lack of Allied Naval presence . It was only flawed tactics and tactical decisions that kept these forces from becoming more of a threat than they were,
The Air Elements on Guadalcanal were largely saved on many occisioans by timely warnings from the Austrailian Coast Watcher Establishment that saved the Cactus Air Force from being caught on the Ground by air raids.

While on paper Guadalcanal may look even. It wasn't . At this phase the US was still learning to Island Hop. They were learning to supply deployed forces.Turner's fleet Train had not been born. The Issue of Guadalcanal was indoubt until The 25th ID landed in late October.

Iwo Jima however was different, the 5th, 4th, and 3rd Mar Div's notice there are three. Were not in danger of being thrown back into the sea. Notice that Kuribayashi allowed the intial waves to land instead of engaging at the surf zone. The tactic was to stall the resupply and make the Marines pay thru attrition. The Island would fall.

The Fleet Train was also on station for resupply, Fire support Ships and Jeep Carriers had been introduced. The War in the Pacific had evolved.
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February 1st, 2005  
CO5060.20
 
Certainly, they were both very scary conflicts. Man they must have been set on destruction mode, because I have no doubt pure revenge is not what drove them to win those conflicts...
February 1st, 2005  
03USMC
 
 
Revenge over simplifys it. I believe from what many WWII vets have told me they believed in their cause. They believed they were right. And although they might have rather not been there they believed it was their duty.
February 2nd, 2005  
Young Winston
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Strongbow
Bloody battle. Bravery on both side but the firepower and manpower was totally onesided. The Japanese never had a chance really.

The Battle of Guadalcanal was a more even fight (for the 1st Marine Division)

Check out the battle on the link below.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Guadalcanal
Great link Strongbow.

The Marines certainly had a hard time of it capturing and holding Henderson Field (for the first two months) but it started to become more even after that.

Guadalcanal was certainly not as one sided as Iwo Jima (even though both were bloody affairs).

When I think of the Marines, I think of Guadalcanal first (when they were at a big disadvantage but came through) and Iwo Jima second. I am not putting down any of the veterans from either campaign. They were both extreme efforts.
February 2nd, 2005  
03USMC
 
 
That was point. Comparing the two campaigns is hard. Because the nature and conduct of the war had changed in the intervening years.
February 2nd, 2005  
Charge 7
 
 
As I mentioned earlier, I am the son of a Marine who fought at both Guadalcanal and at Iwo Jima (and other campaigns in between). He seldom spoke of his experiences and then only to myself and my youngest brother as the only other combat troops in the family (my middle brother joined the Air Force - go figure he he). As the oldest, and his namesake, I heard the most of all. He _always_ spoke of Guadalcanal as the toughest he saw for many reasons, but I think the hardest to deal with was the lack of support in the early months of the campaign with the Navy having left them all without even finishing unloading the original amounts of supplies and equipment and not a single ship to keep the Japanese Navy at bay. They had to scavenge food from the Japanese just to keep from starving and use captured Japanese weapons and ammo to supliment their own. It was far from even to start with and it was more than a few months before it was.
February 2nd, 2005  
Zucchini
 

Topic: Tassafaronga and Iwo Jima


My father was a Navy corpsman. He served on the USS New Orleans, which was torpedoed (150 feet of bow blown completely away) during the Battle of Tassafaronga.

photo: http://www.navsource.org/archives/04/0403205.jpg

They were trying to intercept Japanese resupply of Guadacanal.

With the ship out of action, he was assigned to a hospital unit on Tulagi. Eventually he came down with malaria and was returned to the states for care.

His next assignment was to the 28th Regiment of the the 5th Marine Division. He landed in the first wave on green beach at the base of Mt. Suribachi, and was wounded on the first day by shrapnel to the head, shoulder, chest, and knee. He still sets off metal detectors at airports. He stayed with his platoon until the very last day of the battle up in the gorges on the far side of the island from Suribachi. He was decorated for gallantry and wounds (Silver Star and Purple Heart.)

Iwo Jima was essentially an underground fortress. General Kuribayashi and his staff devised a defensive system intended to fight intelligently for every square foot of the island. Spotters flying above the battle said the Marines were like a beehive of activity, but when they flew over the Japanese positions they saw almost nothing. They were in thousands of caves and heavily fortified bunkers, and much of it was interconnected by underground tunnels. They knew exactly what they could hit, and knew exactly how to hit it. There were very few undisciplined and fruitless charges of massed troops. It was a defense designed to fight from positions of strength to the very last man.

19,733 Marines died in WWII - roughly 7000 of them died during one month on Iwo Jima.

I don't know which was worse, but the defense of Iwo Jima was both brilliant and lethal.
February 3rd, 2005  
Strongbow
 
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charge_7
Heavy firepower doesn't mean much when the enemy is burrowed into the native rock to effect a labyrinth of tunnels and redoubts such that not even 16" naval guns can dislodge them. Heavy firepower didn't win Iwo Jima. The M1 rifle and Marine Corps blood and sweat did.
Interesting to note what happened at Saipan. Obviously different conditions to Iwo Jima.


Seven American battleships and 11 destroyers shelled Saipan and Tinian for 2 days before the landings, firing 15,000 16-inch and 5-inch shells at the islands along with 165,000 other shells of other caliber. To even begin to comprehend the magnitude of this onslaught, one needs to realize that a single 16-inch round weighs slightly more than a Volkswagen Beetle, besides being packed with high explosives. On the second day of the bombardment, this force was joined by 8 more battleships, 6 heavy cruisers and 5 light cruisers. The islands were ringed by American warships with their guns blazing. Shells rained down on the island, its villages, inhabitants, and defenders, gouging huge craters in the sand and coral. The earth trembled under the tremendous explosions of naval bombardment and simultaneous air attacks.


http://www.navysite.de/ships/lha2about.htm